"There is no will but God's."
Purpose: To find the peace that comes from the fact that, since there is no will but God's, conflict is impossible.
Longer: 2 times for 10-15 minutes.
- Repeat several times, slowly, determined to hold this in mind and understand it: "There is no will but God's. I cannot be in conflict."
- Then for several minutes add relevant thoughts, such as: "I am at peace," or "My will and God's are one." If any conflict thoughts arise, say immediately: "There is no will but God's. These conflict thoughts are meaningless." If one conflict area is persistent, think about it briefly and specifically identify the person(s) or situation(s) involved, saying: There is no will but God's. I share it with Him. My conflicts about_____cannot be real."
- Then close eyes and try to sink into and be enveloped by peace. If you succeed you will feel a deep joy and alertness. If instead you feel yourself slipping into withdrawal--if you feel drowsy or weakened--repeat idea and try again. Do this as often as you need.
Shorter: at regular predetermined intervals (suggestion: every half hour) 1 or 2 minutes.
- Say: "There is no will but God's. I seek His peace today."
- Then try to find that peace, with eyes closed, if possible.
The lesson states that this idea "can be regarded as the central thought toward which all our exercises are directed" (1:1) The Course makes similar claims about ideas that seem quite different from this one, for instance, "There is no world" (W-pI.132.6:2,3). All of the ideas so identified, however, boil down to what we can call "non-dualism." That is, God is unopposed; nothing apart from Him and His creations exists. There is no devil, no power that opposes God, nothing that exists independent of Him and therefore capable of having a differing will.
To say that nothing can have a will that differs from God's must include ourselves. The result of believing this is that conflict leaves our minds. How could our mind be in conflict if we have no will that can conflict with God's?
What, though, can we say of our common experience of wanting things that we think are opposed to God, or of wanting to do what He does not want us to do? Or even more down to earth, the experiencing of being torn between conflicting desires? If there is no will but God's, how is such experience possible?
The real answer is, it is not possible, unless there are illusions involved: "Without illusions conflict is impossible" (2:4). Conflict exists only between two illusions. In Reality there is no conflict, and Reality does not conflict with illusions, either. "The war against yourself is but the battle of two illusions...There is no conflict between them and the truth...Truth does not fight against illusions, nor do illusions fight against the truth. Illusions battle only with themselves" (T-23.I.6:1-2, 7:3-4). When there seems to be a will opposed to God, whether outside of us or within us, we are seeing illusions.
"There is no will but God's. I cannot be in conflict" (3:2-3). This is the truth. I have often found that conflict thoughts in my mind can be defused simply by recognizing that they are meaningless, and that the conflict cannot be real. No peace is possible if I believe that my mind can be in conflict, but when I realize I cannot be in conflict, incredible peace results.
There is a very interesting observation about discerning the reality of peaceful feelings as opposed to false peace resulting from withdrawal and repression. True peace brings "a deep sense of joy and an increased alertness." False peace brings "drowsiness and enervation." (5:3-4) In our attempts to enter the quiet and feel our peace, we are admonished to avoid withdrawal and to pull ourselves back to alertness by repeating today's idea. "There is definite gain in refusing to allow retreat into withdrawal, even if you do not experience the peace you seek" (6:5). From this we can surmise that even conscious conflict is better than repressed conflict, although the goal is to realize the unreality of the conflict and thus experience peace. Another thought: These are really very detailed meditation instructions, and demonstrate that students are really expected to be trying to do these exercises for ten or fifteen minutes twice daily.
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