Miracles News

July-September, 2020

The Virus in Our Mind

by Rev. Maria Kingsley, Ordained Ministerial Counselor

A friend of mind used to say, “What a world, what a world!” and rolled his eyes. Indeed, what kind of world are we living in today?

Every day we are confronted with information on what to do and what not to do. The apparent threat of infection and disease, or death, is all around us. It is affecting all of our lives, our communication with family, friends, neighbors and helpers. It is affecting our work, our finances, our movements, and we are asked to look at life from another perspective. How do we deal with life when we are not focused on worldly careers, school, shopping, dining out, movie going, and other community events?

As students of A Course in Miracles, we want to remember that we are learning to ‘see things differently.’ And now it becomes even more important to say, “Above all else I want to see things differently,” as Lesson 28 urges us to practice. But how do we actually shift from fear to seeing Peace, and good, happy things? Of course, this is not seeing things in the world, but in our mind.

In Lesson 28, Jesus says, “… you will be making a series of definite commitments. The question of whether you will keep them in the future is not our concern here. If you are willing at least to make them now, you have started on the way to keeping them. And we are still at the beginning.” (W-pI.28.1:2-5)

So, let’s look at how to see this virus differently. How have we defined it; what thoughts and feelings have we attached to it; where does our fear come from? Are we afraid to get sick, to die, to have no money to pay for food or medical costs; are we afraid of other people who may give us the virus? I’m sure there are many more ideas that all lead to the same negative state of mind: We are not safe, and we will react as a body. It is the body identity that brings on fear and worry and loneliness etc. We intellectually know we are not the body; at least that’s what we read in the Course. But to trust and identify with our Spirit Self is a more difficult task. And yet, we are asked to only do this exercise now. Don’t worry about the future. But let go of the past, which is not here now.

In this lesson, we are asked to see this virus and the world differently. The virus is just another object in the world. It is not different than any other ideas that bring up fear in us. Whether we know it or not, we are choosing to be in fear, and we can choose love or peace or joy or harmony or excellent health.

We have the power of Christ within us, but very few know how to connect with It and apply It. Again, we know it is an intellectual thought but, by itself, it has no power. What keeps us away from that power is our choice to join with worldly powers and so we have given ideas and things in the world power over us. We make the virus a powerful force in our mind. We agree that it can hurt us, take things from us, make us poor and sick. And yes, it can do these things if we hold on to our attachments and rely on worldly goods, services, and safety instead of those given to us by our Creator.   

The commitment Lesson 28 is asking us to make is: “…  to withdraw our preconceived ideas about the table, (the virus) and open our mind to what it is, and what it is for. You are not defining it in past terms. You are asking what it is, rather than telling it what it is. You are not binding its meaning to your tiny experience of tables (or viruses) nor are you limiting its purpose to your little personal thoughts.”  (3:1-4)

The Course tells us that “The world I see holds nothing that I want.” (W-pI.128)

And yet, we want so much from the world. How can we combine those two thoughts: I want a wonderful, easy life, and I want the Peace of God. We are desperately in need of the Peace of God, but as the Course says, in order to have it, the cost is losing the world. It is either the world or Peace of Mind. Which one do we want more? We can say, “I am in danger no where in the world” (W-pII.244), but that would not be true for many people.

The body has a strong hold on us. We don’t believe that we are safe if we choose Peace or Love or God’s Protection. We are not practiced in feeling the Peace of God often enough and so it has a vague pull on us. We feel that this is somehow true, but we have not given it our full attention.

Siding with the ego and the all-pervasive fear has made us weak and eroded our will to choose. And yet we read, “I have given everything I see … all the meaning that it has for me.” (W-pI.2)

The Course tells us that we can choose differently any moment, at any powerful NOW. And yet, this seems to be so difficult. We have given our perceptions the power that God has given us and made the illusion true. We still believe that we are the victim of the world around us. These are the obstacles to the Peace we truly want.

There are many obstacles in our mind that keep us from choosing the Peace of God. We can, this moment, let go of all fears and choose to trust our Divine Creator that S/He will guide us safely. Sometimes we choose that for a moment, and we feel the power and joy in that. But the world can quickly come back into our mind as soon as we hear the news on TV or feel discomfort in our body.

Lesson 28 tells us that, “you will not question what you have already defined” but questioning we must do and listen for the answer. And we want to ‘see’ with vision, which includes ‘hearing’ the quiet gentle Voice within which reminds us of how to envision things differently.

Jesus continues in this lesson that simple items like the table, or perhaps seemingly complicated items like a virus, can help us gain vision from them if we can withdraw all our own ideas from it. “It has something to show you; something beautiful and clean and of infinite value, full of happiness and hope. Hidden under all your ideas about it is its real purpose, the purpose it shares with all the universe. You are therefore really asking to see the purpose of the universe.” (W-pI.28.5:2-3)

The purpose of the universe is the same as the purpose of this world. The world is here for us to remember that we are Love. Our function here is to forgive, to see beyond the illusion of viruses, to return to trusting That Which is trustworthy. We are not of this world, yet, we are in this world and we have a function.

The lesson that this virus has shown me is to see that this is another opportunity to go deeper within myself and find what I am really afraid of. What is the lesson here, and there may be many. But, when I meditate and go within and join with the purity of the Divine, at least for a while, I know that I can trust that the Holy Spirit is right there with me, guiding me safely, no matter where I go or what I do.

I’ve experienced this many times, and it is always very uplifting, joyful and energizing. And when my thoughts get pulled to worldly events or fears, I can adamantly tell my little self to no longer believe that I am a weak little child who is trying to be loved by her parents, but that there is a loving Father in a real world who keeps me happy and safe. I am so grateful for that.

So, what kind of world do you want to live in? Your answer will tell you whether you are coming from fear or Love. Choose wisely, choose Love!

Rev. Maria Kingsley is a Pathways of Light minister living in Tucson, Arizona. Email: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  520-780-0170 P.O. Box 35122

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