The Four Habits for Inner Peace

A wise teacher teaches through approach, not avoidance. He does not emphasize what you must avoid to escape from harm, but what you need to learn to have joy. Consider the fear and confusion a child would experience if he were told, "Do not do this because it will hurt you and make you unsafe; but if you do that instead, you will escape from harm and be safe, and then you will not be afraid." It is surely better to use only three words: "Do only that!" This simple statement is perfectly clear, easily understood and very easily remembered. (T-6.V.3)

Lately some students have asked for a simplification of what they must do to “accept the atonement” for themselves and to be at peace. A Course in Miracles teaches you certain habits in the Workbook, and emphasizes certain behaviors throughout, and I have distilled these into what I call the “Four Habits for Inner Peace”. These habits are what I developed for myself first by falling back on them during “trying” times, and then by choice all the time because of the peace they brought me. By putting these habits first your life will be simpler and every part of your life will unfold naturally and easily from them.

The goal is to become only these habits. As you develop these habits you will naturally encounter your obstacles to peace. The habits themselves will help you work through the obstacles by motivating you to accept peace instead of fear. All of these habits work together to support the other habits and can be developed simultaneously, though you may wish to emphasize one habit over the others until you feel you begin to “get it”.

Commune With God Daily
Prayer is an offering; a giving up of yourself to be at one with Love. (S-1.I.5)

By “commune” I mean to just be with God. This is true prayer. You sit somewhere where you will not be disturbed, you close your eyes and you quiet your mind. You let all thoughts go by and sink into the quiet at the center of your mind. You are not asking for anything; you are not seeking anything. You are just opening yourself to God without conditions. This is the most important thing you do every day. This alone will cause amazing shifts toward peace within you.

Practice the Holy Instant Throughout the Day
I will be still an instant and go home. (W-182)

This is a mini version of communing with God. At various times throughout the day – just as the Workbook teaches you – step out of the world for an instant and remember you are in God. You don’t have to set up a rigid schedule. Just whenever you stop being busy and have a moment. You can even develop this habit of stepping out of the world and remembering your Oneness with God in the midst of busy-ness and noisiness. As this becomes a habit an awareness of God stays with you when you return to the world and you won’t have to make a point to step out so often – you are already “there”.

Extend Love to Keep Love in Your Awareness
Teach only love, for that is what you are. (T-6.I.13)

When you have established a relationship with God and feel that connection throughout the day, you feel whole and complete. Because you are resting in love, you automatically extend love. But until you have that feeling of wholeness, you must consciously choose to overlook your projections of ego and to look on God’s love instead. Extending love is how you keep love in your awareness and remember you are love.

Let the Holy Spirit Lead You
I will step back and let Him lead the way. (W-155)

There is no point in developing a relationship with God if you are going to remain separate from God. You may have moments of peace, but you will still be conflicted most of the time. Developing this habit takes the most time because you will resist this habit the most. You must let go of your personal (ego) goals and leave all judgments and decisions to the Holy Spirit. This requires that you sort out what is ego and what is the Holy Spirit in your mind (see
Development of Trust). When you practice the holy instant and remember to let the Holy Spirit lead, you can be certain you are being guided even when you do not seem to feel it.

One of the first obstacles you will encounter as you try to put these habits into play is goals other than God. When you get confused, remember you only have to practice these four habits, and nothing else, no matter what is going on in your life or in which stage of awakening you are. As you experience the peace they bring, you will be motivated more and more to put them in the center of your life. When you become these habits you will truly be an instrument of God.

The full acceptance of salvation as your only function necessarily entails two phases; the recognition of salvation as your function, and the relinquishment of all the other goals you have invented for yourself. (W-65.1)

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Comments

Anonymous said…
Hi Liz,

I've realised that I have forgotten what love is and therefore have no idea of how to extend it. Have you any tips on how I can fix this please?

Thank you for your blog and books.
ACIM Mentor said…
Anonymous, Love is an awareness of your wholeness in Truth. You extend It in your awareness by bringing this to mind in any situation in which you are disturbed by a sense of lack.
Anonymous said…
Thanks Liz. That leads me to another question. What is my wholeness? How do I know again if I have wholeness? What does wholeness contain or consist of? Is there a list of things that tells us what we truly are?

I was communing with God earlier and HS said, "This is What You are." But all I saw was nothingness, quietness, and a feeling of waiting for something HUGE to burst into my awareness. I was waiting for God to show Himself but I couldn't find Him. I felt peaceful but also disappointed that I didn't feel that He was there. And I felt abandoned and sad. Almost like I had been stood up. I arrived and was there waiting for Him but He never comes. Why?
Anonymous said…
It just dawned on me that Oneness means that it is already here with me. 'One'-ness means One. I've been waiting for Him but He has to already be here because that is what Oneness is. All is One! OMG!! And Everything IS No-thing... Am I right?
ACIM Mentor said…
Yes, Anonymous, you got it!

What you experienced was Wholeness.

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