Pay attention to your obsessions. When a line or phrase or concept from A Course in Miracles leaps out at you, take it with both hands and do a real waltz. One of the blessings of the Course is that each part of it contains the whole. It’s a bit like being in a house – the light comes through many windows, but it’s all the same sun.
Reading this section this morning – and then meditating a bit on it – led me to the phrase “no private thoughts.” I have no private thoughts (W-pI.52.5:2). The thoughts of which I am aware are not real thoughts – they’re fakes, hand shadows on the wall that distract me from my real thoughts, the thoughts that I think with God, and which have the power to wake me up.
At the level of the world, I resist this idea. I like my privacy! I don’t want you seeing the crazy thoughts that spiral around in my brain. And so I read that and I shut down a little. I decide that’s a part of the Course I won’t take, even though I’ll take some others.
But when I do that, I shut down the whole. There is no middle ground here. I experience that as a fearful thing, but in truth it contains the seed of my release. I have no private thoughts because there are no private minds – there is just one mind that is remembering its wholeness. And the Course is simply removing those obstacles that block my awareness of this fact. That’s all.
Sometimes when I write, I am very aware of readers. And I know that what you read is only there because you put it there. It’s not my words but our words. And they are always helpful, even if it doesn’t seem that way. Even if they point us to other students and teachers, other resources. We are aiming for a feeling rather than understanding a group of concepts. I don’t have to perfectly understand “no private thoughts” so much as be willing to have the experience of “no private thoughts.”
In the summer I spend a lot of time in local brooks and rivers. I know the best swimming holes, the places where the rocks are smooth and the current throws your body like a rocket through the water. When I am in those places, I am not reasoning. I am trusting. I am letting the flow direct me. There is an intelligence at work but my brain is not the director. It’s a joyful rush of the sort that my brain, my egoic thinking is not very good at creating.
The Course is like that, I think. We are aiming at a letting go, a trusting that enables us to pass through – to flow – through our experience in a very present way. We are not judging according to the dictates of the past and we are not manipulating with an eye on the future. We are simply trusting God – what is – to handle it. We can’t think our way to this. Study – which is a good thing – only takes us so far. Sooner or later we step into the river. Sooner or later we place our faith in the flowing that surrounds and carries us home.