All posts by Auntie Patricia

Patricia Robinett has been leading A Course In Miracles study groups for over 20 years. December 27, 2008 she began a new project – to video tape the ACIM Workbook lessons, even though she had never made a video before. Between January 1 and December 31, 2009 she released 365 videos. In 2009 she also released her 35-year project, "Knowledge, The Essence of World Scriptures" which can be purchased at amazon.com.

Lesson 023 – I can escape from the world I see by giving up attack thoughts

The idea for today contains the only way out of fear that will ever succeed. Nothing else will work; everything else is meaningless. But this way cannot fail. Every thought you have makes up some segment of the world you see. It is with your thoughts, then, that we must work, if your perception of the world is to be changed.

If the cause of the world you see is attack thoughts, you must learn that it is these thoughts which you do not want. There is no point in lamenting the world. There is no point in trying to change the world. It is incapable of change because it is merely an effect. But there is indeed a point in changing your thoughts about the world. Here you are changing the cause. The effect will change automatically.

The world you see is a vengeful world, and everything in it is a symbol of vengeance. Each of your perceptions of “external reality” is a pictorial representation of your own attack thoughts. One can well ask if this can be called seeing. Is not fantasy a better word for such a process, and hallucination a more appropriate term for the result?

You see the world that you have made, but you do not see yourself as the image maker. You cannot be saved from the world, but you can escape from its cause. This is what salvation means, for where is the world you see when its cause is gone? Vision already holds a replacement for everything you think you see now. Loveliness can light your images, and so transform them that you will love them, even though they were made of hate. For you will not be making them alone.

The idea for today introduces the thought that you are not trapped in the world you see, because its cause can be changed. This change requires, first, that the cause be identified and then let go, so that it can be replaced. The first two steps in this process require your co-operation. The final one does not. Your images have already been replaced. By taking the first two steps, you will see that. this is so.

Besides using it throughout the day as the need arises, five practise periods are required in applying today’s idea. As you look about you, repeat the idea slowly to yourself first, and then close your eyes and devote about a minute to searching your mind for as many attack thoughts as occur to you. As each one crosses your mind, say:

I can escape from the world I see by giving up attack thoughts about _______

Hold each attack thought in mind as you say this, and then dismiss that thought and go on to the next.

In the practise periods, be sure to include both your thoughts of attacking and of being attacked. Their effects are exactly the same because they are exactly the same. You do not recognise this as yet, and you are asked at this time only to treat them as the same in today’s practise periods. We are still at the stage of identifying the cause of the world you see. When you finally learn that thoughts of attack and of being attacked are not different, you will be ready to let the cause go.

Lesson 021 – I am determined to see things differently

The idea for today is obviously a continuation and extension of the preceding one. This time, however, specific mind searching periods are necessary, in addition to applying the idea to particular situations as they may arise. Five practise periods are urged, allowing a full minute for each.

In the practise periods, begin by repeating the idea to yourself. Then close your eyes and search your mind carefully for situations past, present or anticipated that arouse anger in you. The anger may take the form of any reaction ranging from mild irritation to rage. The degree of the emotion you experience does not matter. You will become increasingly aware that a slight twinge of annoyance is nothing but a veil drawn over intense fury.

Try, therefore, not to let the “little” thoughts of anger escape you in the practise periods. Remember that you do not really recognise what arouses anger in you, and nothing that you believe in this connection means anything. You will probably be tempted to dwell more on some situations or persons than on others, on the fallacious grounds that they are more “obvious”. This is not so. It is merely an example of the belief that some forms of attack are more justified than others.

As you search your mind for all the forms in which attack thoughts present themselves, hold each one in mind while you tell yourself:

I am determined to see ________ [name of person] differently.
I am determined to see ________ [specify the situation] differently.

Try to be as specific as possible. You may, for example, focus your anger on a particular attribute of a particular person, believing that the anger is limited to this aspect. If your perception is suffering from this form of distortion, say:

I am determined to see _________ [specify the attribute] in _________ [name of person] differently.

Lesson 020 – I am determined to see

We have been quite casual about our practise periods thus far. There has been virtually no attempt to direct the time for undertaking them, minimal effort has been required, and not even active co-operation and interest have been asked. This approach has been intentional, and very carefully planned. We have not lost sight of the crucial importance of the reversal of your thinking. The salvation of the world depends on it. Yet you will not see if you regard yourself as being coerced, and if you give in to resentment and opposition.

This is our first attempt to introduce structure. Do not misconstrue it as an effort to exert force or pressure. You want salvation. You want to be happy. You want peace. You do not have them now, because your mind is totally undisciplined, and you cannot distinguish between joy and sorrow, pleasure and pain, love and fear. You are now learning how to tell them apart. And great indeed will be your reward.

Your decision to see is all that vision requires. What you want is yours. Do not mistake the little effort that is asked of you for an indication that our goal is of little worth. Can the salvation of the world be a trivial purpose? And can the world be saved if you are not? God has one Son, and he is the resurrection and the life. His will is done because all power is given him in Heaven and on earth. In your determination to see is vision given you.

The exercises for today consist in reminding yourself throughout the day that you want to see. Today’s idea also tacitly implies the recognition that you do not see now. Therefore, as you repeat the idea, you are stating that you are determined to change your present state for a better one, and one you really want.

Repeat today’s idea slowly and positively at least twice an hour today, attempting to do so every half hour. Do not be distressed if you forget to do so, but make a real effort to remember. The extra repetitions should be applied to any situation, person or event that upsets you. You can see them differently, and you will. What you desire you will see. Such is the real law of cause and effect as it operates in the world.