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“I choose the second place to gain the first.”
Sometimes I feel on the verge of experiencing unity with Holy Spirit. There is a sense of inner joy mixed with anticipation, like the feeling of getting close to home after a long trip away. Sometimes I experience deep peace and a feeling of Love and compassion for everything I think about. Sometimes I feel like I am just on the surface of this experience and other times I’m able to go deeper into it. Yet I know that I have yet to plumb its depths.
My attachment to the world of form that I have thought was home is still too strong for me to let it go completely, which I must do to fully experience unity with the Holy Spirit and my Creator. It seems that when I get too close to this experience, something will distract me. A sound will get my attention and I will start thinking about what it is or what it means. Or I might think of something on my “to do” list. Or I might think of a conversation I had or even expect to have. These are a few of the ways my ego mind will distract me so that I don’t fully experience my unity with all.
This distraction is essential to the ego’s existence. The ego is the idea of separation and disappears in the experience of unity. That is why to the ego, salvation is autonomy and complete independence from God and all His Creations, extensions of Love. It is helpful to remember that this mind wandering is just the ego’s defense against Love. It is its attempt to make it appear that it has succeeded in making a will of its own and therefore has usurped God and become “number one.”
I can choose differently. By choosing to put this ‘will’ second and accepting that God’s Will is really mine, I open the door to the memory of my Self, which is still one with Love, Its Creator. This is why I must “choose the second place to gain the first.”
These tastes or hints of the experience of unity with the Holy Spirit motivate me to keep practicing. I know there is much more to experience — greater joy, greater peace and greater love — than I have yet to experience. And so today I practice again putting the Holy Spirit’s Will in the lead and choosing to follow so that I may once again experience my Home in Heaven.
This world is a distraction from knowing God’s Will. This world is the effect of choosing independence from God’s Will. The distraction of the body could take up all my time if I let it. This distraction will continue until I change my mind about the purpose of the world. My experience of this false world will continue until I am willing to follow the Holy Spirit’s lead.
The Holy Spirit will lead me in a thought reversal. The Holy Spirit will lead me into peace. But I must let go of thinking that I know what anything means on my own. I must have an open mind. Following Holy Spirit’s lead, I will gradually wake up from the dream completely. I will let go of the idea of having an independent reality. I will learn to see past the ego’s image making and become aware of God’s Thoughts. To do this I must be willing to follow and not lead. “I choose the second place to gain the first.”
I appreciate knowing that I am not the only one who has that problem — distractions when I meditate. I get very discouraged sometimes because even when I seem to be doing well, I will suddenly realize that my mind has gone off on a tangent that has nothing to do with my meditation. Now I understand what is going on. Thanks for that. Also, I think that this is the first time I have really understood the phrase “I choose the second place to gain the first.”
This distraction is essential to the ego’s existence. Thank you. That helps me, because that is a big problem for me at times. With this, I will work to go beyond, rather than giving up, which is what ego demands.
© 2003, Pathways of Light. http://pathwaysoflight.org
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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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