If I defend myself I am attacked

This post was written by DoctorJay on May 29, 2010
Posted Under: A Course In Miracles - workbook

Continuing with day 135 of the ACIM workbook – from the book:

Who would defend himself unless he thought he were attacked, that the attack were real, and that his own defense could save himself? And herein lies the folly of defense; it gives illusions full reality, and then attempts to handle them as real. It adds illusions to illusions, thus making correction doubly difficult. And it is this you do when you attempt to plan the future, activate the past, or organize the present as you wish.

You operate from the belief you must protect yourself from what is happening because it must contain what threatens you. A sense of threat is an acknowledgment of an inherent weakness; a belief that there is danger which has power to call on you to make appropriate defense. The world is based on this insane belief…

The body is in need of no defense. This cannot be too often emphasized. It will be strong and healthy if the mind does not abuse it by assigning it to roles it cannot fill, to purposes beyond its scope, and to exalted aims which it cannot accomplish…

The “self” that needs protection is not real. The body, valueless and hardly worth the least defense, need merely be perceived as quite apart from you, and it becomes a healthy, serviceable instrument through which the mind can operate until its usefulness is over. Who would want to keep it when its usefulness is done?

Defend the body and you have attacked your mind. For you have seen in it the faults, the weaknesses, the limits and the lacks from which you think the body must be saved. You will not see the mind as separate from bodily conditions. And you will impose upon the body all the pain that comes from the conception of the mind as limited and fragile, and apart from other minds and separate from its Source.

These are the thoughts in need of healing, and the body will respond with health when they have been corrected and replaced with truth. This is the body’s only real defense…

A healed mind does not plan. It carries out the plans that it receives through listening to wisdom that is not its own…

The mind engaged in planning for itself is occupied in setting up control of future happenings. It does not think that it will be provided for, unless it makes its own provisions. Time becomes a future emphasis, to be controlled by learning and experience obtained from past events and previous beliefs. It overlooks the present, for it rests on the idea the past has taught enough to let the mind direct its future course.

What could you not accept, if you but knew that everything that happens, all events, past, present and to come, are gently planned by One Whose only purpose is your good?

[] Without defenses, you become a light which Heaven gratefully acknowledges to be its own…

We will anticipate that time today with present confidence, for this is part of what was planned for us. We will be sure that everything we need is given us for our accomplishment of this today. We make no plans for how it will be done, but realize that our defenselessness is all that is required for the truth to dawn upon our minds with certainty.

For fifteen minutes twice today we rest from senseless planning, and from every thought that blocks the truth from entering our minds. Today we will receive instead of plan, that we may give instead of organize. And we are given truly, as we say:

If I defend myself I am attacked.
But in defenselessness I will be strong,
and I will learn what my defenses hide.

Nothing but that. If there are plans to make, you will be told of them. They may not be the plans you thought were needed, nor indeed the answers to the problems which you thought confronted you. But they are answers to another kind of question, which remains unanswered yet in need of answering until the Answer comes to you at last.

All your defenses have been aimed at not receiving what you will receive today. And in the light and joy of simple trust, you will but wonder why you ever thought that you must be defended from release. Heaven asks nothing. It is hell that makes extravagant demands for sacrifice. You give up nothing in these times today when, undefended, you present yourself to your Creator as you really are.

He has remembered you. Today we will remember Him. For this is Eastertime in your salvation. And you rise again from what was seeming death and hopelessness. Now is the light of hope reborn in you, for now you come without defense, to learn the part for you within the plan of God. What little plans or magical beliefs can still have value, when you have received your function from the Voice for God Himself?

Try not to shape this day as you believe would benefit you most. For you can not conceive of all the happiness that comes to you without your planning. Learn today. And all the world will take this giant stride, and celebrate your Eastertime with you. Throughout the day, as foolish little things appear to raise defensiveness in you and tempt you to engage in weaving plans, remind yourself this is a special day for learning, and acknowledge it with this:

This is my Eastertime. And I would keep it holy.
I will not defend myself, because the Son of God
needs no defense against the truth of his reality.

I like the idea of Eastertime. At the same time even though I know intellectually that defending oneself is a major cause of most troubles it is difficult to be free and clear and not allow my hot buttons be pushed.

But then what are these hot buttons other than just living in the past and judgment. One can look at it from cognitive science point of view where habitual patterns are like automatic subroutines which are set off by the appropriate stimulus.

I remember one of the earliest exercises in the ACIM workbook where we worked on the fact that we see nothing as it is now.

I had to stop as we are getting a new refrigerator today and a gentleman came from the recycling company to remove the old energy hog one.  Later they will deliver the energy efficient one…

Back here I remember Alan Watts talking about a meditation where you listen to sounds with no thoughts, no commentary as though hearing each sound for the first time ever. The same is true about all other senses. When you are a blank state you are the kingdom. I was going to write you are in the kingdom of God. However, other words came out.

I have been talking to a dear friend about free will and how when I write the best is when I can get out of the way and allow the writing just happen…

First exercise:

After I did the first exercise something happened which would have made lose my cool. I decided not to go on the defensive. I remained calm.  It felt so good to let go of control and so keep full control. Later I got stuck in traffic and lines and yet because of today’s exercise I felt good and never had to get on the defensive.

Second Exercise:

Again I felt happy and at peace. All is well with no defense.


Today all has been well. I had to stop the ACIM workbook for a while and now that I’m back at it I feel peace. It (the theory of A Course in Miracles) makes no sense but the meditations do work in bringing peace and allowing me to love more.

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