Let me recognize the problem so it can be solved.
Let me recognize my problems have been solved.
I’ve said many times that lessons 79 and 80 are amongst my favorites in the entire ACIM workbook. If you can “get” these two, then you’ve got “it.” You’re home free. Lesson 34 is another one. I could see peace instead of this. When we believe that – when we can bring it into application – then we’re home.
These two lessons were also the first that seemed to necessitate one another. Indeed, they feel less like separate lessons and more like halves of a bigger whole. I tend to take them that way now.
Lesson 79 asks us to get clear on what the problem is. This is important. We have to see the problem in order to see the solution. Nothing happens if we can’t muster the willingness to look at what’s going on. We need that clarity and that certainty. We need to be able to say, okay, this is the problem.
Our real problem is separation. Every other problem – cash shortages, fights with friends and partners, dead or dying parents, headaches and spotty cable signals are all symptoms of our belief that we are separated from God. We only have multiple problems because we’ve given credence to this one problem. Does that make sense? Can you allow that it might at least make a little sense?
A Course in Miracles is really asking us to look and pay attention. We don’t hide our problems under a glossy happy dream. We don’t waltz around singing how beautiful life is. It might be from time to time but if we are really doing the work of forgiveness – which is right seeing – then we are going to be wading through the muck and the muck’s going to stink and it’s not always going to stop at our knees.
Let’s say that I have a problem. My problem is that I’m confused about what the separation is. Can I see the confusion? There’s a lot of resistance to that! I want to be smart and I want to be well. Being confused feels like failure. So I glance at it and then find something better to focus on. Or I say, yes, I’m confused but I’m not as confused as so-and-so. They’re really confused. Right?
But then one day – maybe practicing lesson 79 – I don’t do that. Instead of judging the confusion, I just let it be. I say yes, I am confused about what it means to be separated. I let it be. I don’t fight it. And then it’s just there sort of. I’m not trying to fix it, or hide it, or project it, or do anything with it. I am seeing the problem where it is: in my mind. It’s not your problem. It’s not the world’s problem. It’s here in my thoughts.
And here is what is so powerful and cool about that: when I am not judging my confusion, then it is no longer confusion. It just is. Does that make sense? It can only be confusion if I compare it to some standard of clarity. It’s only confusion when I bring some other idea in to compare it to. If I don’t get into the judgment and the comparison, then there is no problem. The confusion is no longer good or bad. It’s no longer a state I have to fix in the future. It’s no longer a state that results from my poor study of the text in the past.
There is such freedom in seeing that! There is such freedom in that because when we let go of the judgment, then we see that we do not have the problem. There is no problem – the problem was we thought we had a problem. And we thought we had a problem because we were bringing all this other crap into the equation. As soon as we let that crap fall to the side, we realize – as per lesson 80 – that our problems are indeed solved. They just aren’t there.
Now that is easy to write and maybe it’s easy to say. I understand that. I appreciate it. And it’s hard to get into that state where you don’t judge. But you can do it! You can make it happen a little. And then you can make it happen a little more. And a little more after that. And then before you know it, you are awake. You are at peace because there is nothing else.