IV. Healing as Release from Fear P 4
4 All material means that you accept as remedies for bodily ills are restatements of magic principles. This is the first step in believing that the body makes its own illness. It is a second misstep to heal it through non-creative agents. It does not follow, however, that the use of such agents for corrective purposes is evil. Sometimes the illness has a sufficiently strong hold over the mind to render a person temporarily inaccessible to the Atonement. In this case it may be wise to utilize a compromise approach to mind and body, in which something from the outside is temporarily given healing belief. This is because the last thing that can help the non-right-minded, or the sick, is an increase in fear. They are already in a fear-weakened state. If they are prematurely exposed to a miracle, they may be precipitated into panic. This is likely to occur when upside-down perception has induced the belief that miracles are frightening.
I love how gentle Jesus is in this course of his. He knows that we have a lot of fear and he goes out of his way to be sure we don’t use the Course to increase that fear. I notice that when I read this part about maybe being in a fear-weakened state and so taking medicine for now, that ego wants to take that as a challenge. Or sometimes it wants to use it as a sign that I am guilty of not being better than that. But these kinds of ego ploys don’t work on me anymore. They are just thoughts passing through and find no hook in me so they don’t stay.
Jesus is very gently guiding me to let go of certain magic remedies. It is time for this because I no longer believe that I am victim to pain and sickness and I am comfortable accepting responsibility. I know that the body is an image projected from my mind and I know that pain and sickness are simply more images projected from a sick mind. This idea is not uncomfortable for me at all and just awakens in me a strong desire to heal the mind. So now is a good time for me to start letting go of some of my crutches.
I am not going at this with a vengeance. I am just following guidance one moment at a time, and if I temporarily go back to magic solutions, I do so without guilt or concern. Taking medicine or not taking it is not cause for judgment. The ego, of course, wanted to set me up for failure as soon as I heard the guidance. It said that if I didn’t need one form of magic then I don’t need any and I should stop everything.
I let that thought sit for a moment because I wasn’t sure where it was coming from. But then I felt fear, small and mostly hidden, I knew the idea came from ego so I ignored it. At one time this process would have been miserable and would have raised a lot of fear and guilt. That is why it is best not to try to take charge of my awakening but to allow it to gently unfold.
Yesterday I got a new thought related to this. I have been a real germophobe. (I made that word up.) I have always been afraid of germs and go to extremes to avoid contact. My kids share food from the same plate and even the same spoon and roll their eyes at me because I am aghast. If they thoughtlessly dip their spoon in my food, I just give it to them. They kindly try to remember not to do that.
When I go into a public restroom, which I used to do many times a day since I traveled in my work, I carefully avoid touching anything and then wash my hands as if I have been rolling in germs. I carry disinfectant with me to hotels. I know all kinds of facts about germs and how long they live on surfaces. I’m not OCD about it but I am pretty neurotic. Anyway, yesterday I was washing up in a public restroom and carefully avoiding touching the faucet with my clean hands when I was given the thought to forgive this.
I was not given the thought to be careless or to stop acting like I must avoid germs. This would have definitely been too big of a step for me. I was told to simply forgive it. So every time now when I have a thought about germs I will remind myself that germs are just an image I have projected onto the world that I have also projected. This is the step I am to take. A tiny step forward, a gentle awakening to the truth.
I am so grateful to God. He loves me so much.