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Mantras for our time
Can be very helpful in maintaining inner peace and presence at a time when the world seems to be spinning out of control and away from the values and integrity that support well-being and the common good for a shared experience of peace and happiness in our communities, our culture, family values and the experiences in life that bring us to appreciate who and what we really are all about.
We are all living in times that bring us to contemplate these ideals and values based on our own reactions, fears, and worries as a result of circumstances that seem out of our control and just not right and yet we seem to be helpless sometimes. Like, “what can I do”? right?
Without getting into the hundreds of details and thousands of circumstances we all face in these times I’m going to suggest some mantras for you from A Course in Miracles lessons that will possibly bring you back to center when you are caught off guard by a news flash on your phone or on your Facebook page, on your device or in a newspaper headline. Whatever it is.
Pick one or two of these and commit it to memory. Write it down and place in several places where your eyes will light on it regularly. Pause and bring it back to memory or just pause and be aware of the reaction without any judgement. Stay there for 3 minutes and watch it dissipate like it was a passing cloud.
Five mantra lessons for our time:
Lesson 5 – I am never upset for the reason, I think.
This idea, like the preceding one, can be used with any person, situation or event you think is causing you pain. Apply it specifically to whatever you believe is the cause of your upset, using the description of the feeling in whatever term seems accurate to you. The upset may seem to be fear, worry, depression, anxiety, anger, hatred, jealousy or any number of forms, all of which will be perceived as different. This is not true. However, until you learn that form does not matter, each form becomes a proper subject for the exercises for the day. Applying the same idea to each of them separately is the first step in ultimately recognizing they are all the same.
When using the idea for today for a specific perceived cause of an upset in any form, use both the name of the form in which you see the upset, and the cause which you ascribe to it. For example:
I am not angry at _______ for the reason I think.
I am not afraid of _______ for the reason I think.
But again, this should not be substituted for practice periods in which you first search your mind for “sources” of upset in which you believe, and forms of upset which you think result.
In these exercises, more than in the preceding ones, you may find it hard to be indiscriminate, and to avoid giving greater weight to some subjects than to others. It might help to precede the exercises with the statement:
There are no small upsets.
They are all equally disturbing to my peace of mind.
Then examine your mind for whatever is distressing you, regardless of how much or how little you think it is doing so.
You may also find yourself less willing to apply today’s idea to some perceived sources of upset than to others. If this occurs, think first of this:
I cannot keep this form of upset and let the others go.
For the purposes of these exercises, then,
I will regard them all as the same.
Then search your mind for no more than a minute or so and try to identify a number of different forms of upset that are disturbing you, regardless of the relative importance you may give them. Apply the idea for today to each of them, using the name of both the source of the upset as you perceive it, and of the feeling as you experience it. Further examples are:
I am not worried about _______ for the reason I think.
I am not depressed about _______ for the reason I think.
Three or four times during the day is enough.
Lesson 28- above all else I want to see things differently.
Today we are really giving specific application to the idea for yesterday. In these practice periods, 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.
You may wonder why it is important to say, for example, “Above all else I want to see this table differently.” In itself it is not important at all. Yet what is by itself? And what does “in itself” mean? You see a lot of separate things about you, which really means you are not seeing at all. You either see or not. When you have seen one thing differently, you will see all things differently. The light you will see in any one of them is the same light you will see in them all.
When you say, “Above all else I want to see this table differently,” you are making a commitment to withdraw your preconceived ideas about the table, and open your 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, nor are you limiting its purpose to your little personal thoughts.
You will not question what you have already defined. And the purpose of these exercises is to ask questions and receive the answers. In saying, “Above all else I want to see this table differently,” you are committing yourself to seeing. It is not an exclusive commitment. It is a commitment that applies to the table just as much as to anything else, neither more nor less.
You could, in fact, gain vision from just that table, if you would withdraw all your own ideas from it, and look upon it with a completely open mind. 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.
In using the table as a subject for applying the idea for today, you are therefore really asking to see the purpose of the universe. You will be making this same request of each subject that you use in the practice periods. And you are making a commitment to each of them to let its purpose be revealed to you, instead of placing your own judgment upon it.
We will have six two-minute practice periods today, in which the idea for the day is stated first, and then applied to whatever you see about you. Not only should the subjects be chosen randomly, but each one should be accorded equal sincerity as today’s idea is applied to it, in an attempt to acknowledge the equal value of them all in their contribution to your seeing.
As usual, the applications should include the name of the subject your eyes happen to light on, and you should rest your eyes on it while saying:
Above all else I want to see this _______ differently.
Each application should be made quite slowly, and as thoughtfully as possible. There is no hurry.
Lesson 34 I could see peace instead of this.
The idea for today begins to describe the conditions that prevail in the other way of seeing. Peace of mind is clearly an internal matter. It must begin with your own thoughts, and then extend outward. It is from your peace of mind that a peaceful perception of the world arises.
Three longer practice periods are required for today’s exercises. One in the morning and one in the evening are advised, with an additional one to be undertaken at any time in between that seems most conducive to readiness. All applications should be done with your eyes closed. It is your inner world to which the applications of today’s idea should be made.
Some five minutes of mind searching are required for each of the longer practice periods. Search your mind for fear thoughts, anxiety-provoking situations, “offending” personalities or events, or anything else about which you are harboring unloving thoughts. Note them all casually, repeating the idea for today slowly as you watch them arise in your mind, and let each one go, to be replaced by the next.
If you begin to experience difficulty in thinking of specific subjects, continue to repeat the idea to yourself in an unhurried manner, without applying it to anything in particular. Be sure, however, not to make any specific exclusions.
The shorter applications are to be frequent and made whenever you feel your peace of mind is threatened in any way. The purpose is to protect yourself from temptation throughout the day. If a specific form of temptation arises in your awareness, the exercise should take this form:
I could see peace in this situation instead of what I now see in it.
If the inroads on your peace of mind take the form of more generalized adverse emotions, such as depression, anxiety or worry, use the idea in its original form. If you find you need more than one application of today’s idea to help you change your mind in any specific context, try to take several minutes and devote them to repeating the idea until you feel some sense of relief. It will help you if you tell yourself specifically:
I can replace my feelings of depression, anxiety or worry
[or my thoughts about this situation, personality or event] with peace.
Lesson 106 let me be still and listen to the truth.
If you will lay aside the ego’s voice, however loudly it may seem to call, if you will not accept its petty gifts that give you nothing that you really want; if you will listen with an open mind, that has not told you what salvation is; then you will hear the mighty Voice of truth, quiet in power, strong in stillness, and completely certain in Its messages.
Listen, and hear your Father speak to you through His appointed Voice, which silences the thunder of the meaningless, and shows the way to peace to those who cannot see. Be still today and listen to the truth. Be not deceived by voices of the dead, which tell you they have found the source of life and offer it to you for your belief. Attend them not but listen to the truth.
Be not afraid today to circumvent the voices of the world. Walk lightly past their meaningless persuasion. Hear them not. Be still today and listen to the truth. Go past all things which do not speak of Him Who holds your happiness within His hand, held out to you in welcome and in love. Hear only Him today, and do not wait to reach Him longer. Hear one Voice today.
Today the promise of God’s Word is kept. Hear and be silent. He would speak to you. He comes with miracles a thousand times as happy and as wonderful as those you ever dreamed or wished for in your dreams. His miracles are true. They will not fade when dreaming ends. They end the dream instead; and last forever, for they come from God to His dear Son, whose other name is you. Prepare yourself for miracles today. Today allow your Father’s ancient pledge to you and all your brothers to be kept.
Hear Him today and listen to the Word which lifts the veil that lies upon the earth, and wakes all those who sleep and cannot see. God calls to them through you. He needs your voice to speak to them, for who could reach God’s Son except his Father, calling through your Self? Hear Him today and offer Him your voice to speak to all the multitude who wait to hear the Word that He will speak today.
Be ready for salvation. It is here and will today be given unto you. And you will learn your function from the One Who chose it in your Father’s Name for you. Listen today, and you will hear a Voice Which will resound throughout the world through you. The Bringer of all miracles has need that you receive them first, and thus become the joyous giver of what you received.
Thus, does salvation start and thus it ends; when everything is yours and everything is given away, it will remain with you forever. And the lesson has been learned. Today we practice giving, not the way you understand it now, but as it is. Each hour’s exercises should begin with this request for your enlightenment:
I will be still and listen to the truth.
What does it mean to give and to receive?
Ask and expect an answer. Your request is one whose answer has been waiting long to be received by you. It will begin the ministry for which you came, and which will free the world from thinking giving is a way to lose. And so the world becomes ready to understand and to receive.
Be still and listen to the truth today. For each five minutes spent in listening, a thousand minds are opened to the truth and they will hear the holy Word you hear. And when the hour is past, you will again release a thousand more who pause to ask that truth be given them, along with you.
Today the holy Word of God is kept through your receiving it to give away, so you can teach the world what giving means by listening and learning it of Him. Do not forget today to reinforce your choice to hear and to receive the Word by this reminder, given to yourself as often as is possible today:
Let me be still and listen to the truth.
I am the messenger of God today,
My voice is His, to give what I receive.
Lesson 109 I rest in God.
We ask for rest today, and quietness unshaken by the world’s appearances. We ask for peace and stillness, in the midst of all the turmoil born of clashing dreams. We ask for safety and for happiness, although we seem to look on danger and on sorrow. And we have the thought that will answer our asking with what we request.
“I rest in God.” This thought will bring to you the rest and quiet, peace and stillness, and the safety and the happiness you seek. “I rest in God.” This thought has power to wake the sleeping truth in you, whose vision sees beyond appearances to that same truth in everyone and everything there is. Here is the end of suffering for all the world, and everyone who ever came and yet will come to linger for a while. Here is the thought in which the Son of God is born again, to recognize himself.
“I rest in God.” Completely undismayed, this thought will carry you through storms and strife, past misery and pain, past loss and death, and onward to the certainty of God. There is no suffering it cannot heal. There is no problem that it cannot solve. And no appearance but will turn to truth before the eyes of you who rest in God.
This is the day of peace. You rest in God, and while the world is torn by winds of hate your rest remains completely undisturbed. Yours is the rest of truth. Appearances cannot intrude on you. You call to all to join you in your rest, and they will hear and come to you because you rest in God. They will not hear another voice than yours because you gave your voice to God, and now you rest in Him and let Him speak through you.
In Him you have no cares and no concerns, no burdens, no anxiety, no pain, no fear of future and no past regrets. In timelessness you rest, while time goes by without its touch upon you, for your rest can never change in any way at all. You rest today. And as you close your eyes, sink into stillness. Let these periods of rest and respite reassure your mind that all its frantic fantasies were but the dreams of fever that has passed away. Let it be still and thankfully accept its healing. No more fearful dreams will come, now that you rest in God. Take time today to slip away from dreams and into peace.
Each hour that you take your rest today, a tired mind is suddenly made glad, a bird with broken wings begins to sing, a stream long dry begins to flow again. The world is born again each time you rest, and hourly remember that you came to bring the peace of God into the world, that it might take its rest along with you.
With each five minutes that you rest today, the world is nearer waking. And the time when rest will be the only thing there is comes closer to all worn and tired minds, too weary now to go their way alone. And they will hear the bird begin to sing and see the stream begin to flow again, with hope reborn and energy restored to walk with lightened steps along the road that suddenly seems easy as they go.
You rest within the peace of God today, and call upon your brothers from your rest to draw them to their rest, along with you. You will be faithful to your trust today, forgetting no one, bringing everyone into the boundless circle of your peace, the holy sanctuary where you rest. Open the temple doors and let them come from far across the world, and near as well; your distant brothers and your closest friends; bid them all enter here and rest with you.
You rest within the peace of God today, quiet and unafraid. Each brother comes to take his rest, and offer it to you. We rest together here, for thus our rest is made complete, and what we give today we have received already. Time is not the guardian of what we give today. We give to those unborn and those passed by, to every Thought of God, and to the Mind in which these Thoughts were born and where they rest. And we remind them of their resting place each time we tell ourselves,
“I rest in God.”
Over the years these have been very helpful for me.
I hope this is helpful for you.
Namaste – Om
Co-Founder & President, Teachers of God Foundation
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Thank you! Just what I needed today!
I love these lessons and they certainly helped me for many years. The words/mantras are thoughts, phrases. But, lately, my practice has changed. Now, I am drawn to pause and find the space in which the words arise. Whether it’s the phrase I rest in God or OMG what’s going on, I pause. Instead of focusing on the quality of the thought/mantra/phrase (i.e. I rest in God is a ‘loving thought’ or “OMG what’s going on is a ‘fearful thought’), I pause in the ‘vast space of Presence’ which is the background of the thought. I notice that the thought (whether loving or fearful) dissolves into this space and is completely accepted and temporary. The vast space (without dimension) remains.
Very helpful indeed to be reminded of these oh so simple yet powerful instructions.
The day a friend showed me A Course in Miracles book, I turned to lesson 5, “I am never upset for the reason I think.” Right then and there I knew that was the truth. I was hooked. That was about fifteen years ago. I’m still studying and learning.
Bless you. I needed the lessons and these mantras and the simple sentences I could take into my day. My irritation and anger for no reason seemed to be just bubbling up. I had read this article this morning and wrote down two of the lessons…
I am never upset for the reason, I think.
I could see peace in this situation instead of what I now see in it.
I am willing to see this differently.
Thank-you for so clearly sharing these lessons (mantras) and supporting me in so easily letting things go today and returning to giving and receiving peace.
This is a very powerful lesson in its application and understanding in how you have presented it.
I really appreciated the mantras and the exercises (fill in the blanks) work.
Blessings of peace and joy to you on your path