ACIM Lesson 5 I am never upset for the reason I think.
I am never upset for the reason I think.
1. This idea, like the preceding one, can be used with any person, situation or event you think is causing you pain. ²Apply it specifically to whatever you believe is the cause of your upset, using the description of the feeling in whatever term seems accurate to you. ³The upset may seem to be fear, worry, depression, anxiety, anger, hatred, jealousy or any number of forms, all of which will be perceived as different. ⁴This is not true. ⁵However, until you learn that form does not matter, each form becomes a proper subject for the exercises for the day. ⁶Applying the same idea to each of them separately is the first step in ultimately recognizing they are all the same.
It’s interesting that we must use specific instances for practice throughout A Course in Miracles only to learn that they are all the same and non-specific. It makes sense, though, when I think about it. I learn that an upset with my child is not about what I think, and I discover the same thing about an upset with an unrelated situation. I do this with each person or situation and I come to the same conclusion. It becomes obvious that if not in form but in content, they are all the same.
I Choose God
2. When using the idea for today for a specific perceived cause of an upset in any form, use both the name of the form in which you see the upset, and the cause which you ascribe to it. ²For example:
³I am not angry at _________ for the reason I think.
⁴I am not afraid of _________ for the reason I think.
3. But again, this should not be substituted for practice periods in which you first search your mind for “sources” of upset in which you believe, and forms of upset which you think result.
We are not being asked to discover the true source of the upset as we do this lesson. This will become obvious once we truly want to know. Right now, we are just practicing the idea that we don’t know. In the beginning, that is challenge enough. When I truly desire to know the truth, it is given to me. When I struggle to know the truth, I realize that I am holding onto the desire to assign guilt somewhere outside me. And so, I remind myself of my true desire, the desire to know my Self and to know God. No other purpose approaches this one in importance. I continue to choose God over and over until my mind accepts the truth.
There Are No Small Upsets
4. In these exercises, more than in the preceding ones, you may find it hard to be indiscriminate, and to avoid giving greater weight to some subjects than to others. ²It might help to precede the exercises with the statement:
³There are no small upsets. ⁴They are all equally disturbing to my peace of mind.
5. Then examine your mind for whatever is distressing you, regardless of how much or how little you think it is doing so.
6. You may also find yourself less willing to apply today’s idea to some perceived sources of upset than to others. ²If this occurs, think first of this:
³I cannot keep this form of upset and let the others go. ⁴For the purposes of these exercises, then, I will regard them all as the same.
In these three paragraphs, I find two ideas that have been essential to me in my practice. This first one is, ³There are no small upsets. ⁴They are all equally disturbing to my peace of mind. The ego thought system depends on us accepting that there are degrees of upset. If there are degrees of upset it would mean that some upsets might be justified. And it would mean that some upsets don’t matter. I know I used to believe this.
But with this unequivocal statement, I realized that couldn’t be true. As I watched my mind and my feelings, I saw that if I was upset in any way, I was simply not at peace. Since my only goal is the peace of God, it made no sense to hold onto that which disturbed my peace. With a little practice I proved this was true and now I never doubt it.
The second idea is this. ³I cannot keep this form of upset and let the others go. ⁴For the purposes of these exercises, then, I will regard them all as the same.
How is it that I can’t keep this form of upsets and let the others go? Why not? It is because they are all the same in content if not in form. If I hold onto a grievance, then I believe in the value of grievances. Thus, I will not see the value in releasing them. In failing to release any grievance I am teaching myself that I need grievances. This applies to any upset. Upset accepted is upset believed to be more important than the peace of God and the form it takes is irrelevant.
Directing My Mind Toward God
7. Then search your mind for no more than a minute or so, and try to identify a number of different forms of upset that are disturbing you, regardless of the relative importance you may give them. ²Apply the idea for today to each of them, using the name of both the source of the upset as you perceive it, and of the feeling as you experience it. ³Further examples are:
⁴I am not worried about _________ for the reason I think.
⁵I am not depressed about _________ for the reason I think.
⁶Three or four times during the day is enough.
These days, I use this idea any time I feel upset. It is automatic for me to realize that I am not upset for the reason I think. I simply accept this is true regardless of the form it takes. If I follow an upset to its source, I will eventually get to this core belief. I think I need upsets to keep my ego intact so that I don’t lose my personal self.
I am changing my mind about this and I welcome each upset so that I can direct my mind toward God, instead. Consistent practice has made thinking like this possible and natural. My decision to accept this as true opens my mind to healing. Sometimes I receive clarity as to what it is about on this level so I can change my mind. Or I remember my purpose is God, and choose that instead. Sometimes I just receive healing.
To enjoy the Pathways of Light Insights on ACIM Lesson 5 click here.
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