VIII. The Body as Means or End, P 1
1 Attitudes toward the body are attitudes toward attack. The ego’s definitions of anything are childish, and are always based on what it believes the thing is for. This is because it is incapable of true generalizations, and equates what it sees with the function it ascribes to it. It does not equate it with what it is. To the ego the body is to attack with. Equating you with the body, it teaches that you are to attack with. The body, then, is not the source of its own health. The body’s condition lies solely in your interpretation of its function. Functions are part of being since they arise from it, but the relationship is not reciprocal. The whole does define the part, but the part does not define the whole. Yet to know in part is to know entirely because of the fundamental difference between knowledge and perception. In perception the whole is built up of parts that can separate and reassemble in different constellations. But knowledge never changes, so its constellation is permanent. The idea of part-whole relationships has meaning only at the level of perception, where change is possible. Otherwise, there is no difference between the part and whole.
Jesus has been talking to us about the body as a communication device. He has pointed out that we fail to use it to communicate when we use it to attack. Now he is helping us to understand how this works. The ego judges everything according to what it believes a thing is for. It sees the body as a way to attack, a tool for attack. If I believe I am the ego then I will think the body is for attacking. If I listen to the ego voice I will use the body to attack.
I started thinking about this and opened my mind to the ways I use the body to attack. I see that sickness is an attack. The body becomes the way I prove I am not invulnerable because it is so defenseless against sickness. I further use it to attack as I try to defend it by separating myself from my sick brothers so they don’t give me their sickness. I use it to further attack as I look to the ego for solutions to sickness rather than to God for the only Solution.
I use the body to attack when I move it away from someone who has offended me. If I gossip about someone, or say something unkind, I am using it for attack. If I use the body to attract or repel someone for purposes other than love, it is an attack. If I use the body to prove I could not be holy, it is an attack. Any use to which I put it that promotes the idea of separation is an attack.
Sometimes I try to hide the attack under nice words, but if I examine my feelings and notice that I am annoyed, or frustrated, angry or fearful, if there is any thought of guilt, then I have used the body for attack. But there is a solution. I can remember what Jesus said about this.
Freedom from illusions lies only in not believing them. There is no attack, but there is unlimited communication and therefore unlimited power and wholeness.
There is no attack. Attack is something we made up, like pain and guilt and death. It is not real. I can be free when I stop believing in these illusions, and my freedom lies only in not believing them. So as I use the body for attack, I also remind myself of the truth. The problem I am attacking is an illusion and the ego solution to the problem as attack is also an illusion. I choose not to believe in illusions and I ask that the Holy Spirit purify my thoughts and remove all those thoughts that illusion could be true.