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“To give and to receive are one in truth.”
I have experienced both sides of this truth. I have experienced guilt and fear when I have judged (attacked) another. And I have experienced great feelings of peace and love when I have offered peace and love to others. In fact it seems that sometimes I feel the love stronger when I offer thoughts and words of love to another than when someone offers loving expression to me. Perhaps that is because there are some aspects in my mind that do not feel worthy of love. Perhaps it is because as I offer love and peace, I identify with it first in order to offer it. Or perhaps it is a combination of both. On thing is sure: It is clear that giving and receiving are the same.
Because of this truth, if I want to experience love, peace and joy, it certainly behooves me to offer them to everyone I meet or think of. Peace does not come through criticism, trying to change others so that their behavior will be to my liking, trying to make others guilty, defensiveness, berating myself for “dumb” mistakes, or any of the myriad other ploys the ego uses to try to make it seem that my lack of peace is the result of some external cause.
Peace comes through connecting with the Source of peace that is always within me, my true Self. This peace is then magnified again and again as I share it with anyone and everyone. It is a blessing to bless. I know that I am blessed when I bless.
Today I will seek to only bless with all my thoughts. Holy Spirit, I ask Your help to guide my thoughts that I might share only loving thoughts throughout the day.
Practicing the process in paragraphs 7-9 today is quite convincing. What I offered, I received. As I offered everyone quietness, I received quietness. As I offered everyone peace of mind, I received peace of mind. As I offered everyone gentleness, I received gentleness.
I am realizing that this truth — that to give is to receive — is happening all the time. What I am accepting into my mind is what I am giving and what I am giving is what I am accepting into my mind.
This is the beginning of understanding the truth of unified thought spoken of in paragraphs 2-3 of this lesson. What particularly stands out to me is, “It is a state of mind that has become so unified that darkness cannot be perceived at all. And thus what is the same is seen as one, while what is not the same remains unnoticed, for it is not there.” (2:2-3) and ... “This is the light that brings your peace of mind to other minds, to share it and be glad that they are one with you and with themselves. This is the light that heals because it brings single perception, based upon one frame of reference, from which one meaning comes.” (3:2-3)
When I practiced the process in paragraphs 7-9, I was led to the experience of vision referred to in paragraph 1. This vision reconciled all seeming opposites that I saw before doing the process. As I accepted true perception, I gave true perception. What a powerful practice to use to transform my mind whenever I find myself not at peace! This Course is truly very practical to apply to every part of my daily life.
Thanks for the reminder not to try to change others so their behavior will be more to our liking. I was just about to do that. Now that I think about it, I can see that my Inner Guide was trying to direct me away from that course of action, but my ego wanted to do it so bad, that I wasn’t paying attention. I will offer silent blessings instead and see how that feels.
I, too, have, a million times, experienced both sides of this truth. Unfortunately, if I look back, my ego tells me that I’ve experienced more fear than love, which, in turn, causes guilt. But the Course tells me to hang on to the power of the Holy Spirit and bring from the past with me only those thoughts of love; anything else than that has but given me the strength to seek and find my Heavenly Father.
Many times I just don’t feel like I have it in me to forgive or to love the way I think I should. It is these times that I’ve learned to withdraw from the thoughts of this world for awhile and work on my relationship with my Higher Self until I am able to receive love and forgiveness for myself; at that point I can then give it away and it’s at that point that I see I don’t need to be critical or unforgiving of others. It is only myself I need forgive.
Holy Spirit, help me have the willingness today to offer peace and love to everyone, especially the people my ego tells me have hurt me. Help me know that to give to them is to give to myself. Amen.
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How to Read References for Quotes from A Course in Miracles
Below are example references to specific sentences using the notation of the Second & Third Editions of A Course in Miracles published by the Foundation for Inner Peace:
T-26.IV.4:7 = Text, Chapt. 26, Section IV, paragraph 4, sentence 7.
W-pI.169.5:2 = Workbook, Part I, Lesson 169, paragraph 5, sentence 2.
M-13.3:2 = Manual for Teachers, Question 13, paragraph 3, sentence 2.
C-6.4:6 = Clarification of Terms, Term 6, paragraph 4, sentence 6
The above numbering system
of the Second & Third Editions is © Copyright 1992,
The Foundation for A Course in Miracles.
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