Ask: Can I love and respect nature and still be serious about ACIM?
“...I have always felt a tremendous affinity to the Native American ways and their utter respect for a great Spirit and as keepers of the earth planet. So, here is the "angst" for me...I am clear that ACIM is my primary path, but the connection to the earth, animal totems, etc really speak to me. Yet, I know from the ACIM perspective, there is no world and the emphasis isn't on saving something that isn't "there". Natives saw "spirit" in everything...trees, mountains, streams, corn, buffalo. Is it compatible to have and tend the "love and respect of natural beauty" and be a serious student of ACIM? I remember Ken W saying that frustration with inanimate things was as significant as anything else. Clearly, I'm confusing some things here...” – KL
Your desire to love and to respect the natural world would only be incompatible with your study of A Course in Miracles if it prevented you from being aware that the Truth is in your mind, not in the world of form. As you grow in your awareness of Truth the self will still have its personality. It will still have its preferences, its interests, its likes and dislikes, etc. These are neutral, or without meaning in themselves. What changes is you stop looking to these to be your “salvation” (source of wholeness, happiness, peace).
When one is in nature they often allow their mind to process out its thoughts and they become aware of the quiet Truth (Spirit) beyond all the thoughts. They experience peace. Sometimes they project the source of this peace onto nature. They feel that nature brought them the feeling, rather than that they felt something within that they then projected onto nature.
Also, when you quiet your mind you slow down its processes and you can become aware of the unity, or one mind (what ACIM calls the “Son of God”), behind all forms. Ancient cultures did not have the distractions that we have today. They lived and worked in abundant quiet. So they tended to be very aware of this unity, as well as of cause and effect at the level of form. At first this unity was conceived of as many gods. Later it was conceived of as one god. But the True Being that ACIM calls “God” transcends the one mind that projects the universe of form. God is not responsible for the universe of form and has nothing to do with it. So what you have to sort out is your experience of God (True Being) within from your awareness of the unity of the universe of form.
This sorting out of Truth from illusion is really the whole process ACIM leads you into. There are many illusory experiences that have been labeled “spiritual” by the world that really have nothing to do with Truth. Confusing them keeps you in guilt so sorting out Truth and illusion is essential if you want to be at peace.
Learn about the books The ACIM Mentor Articles, The Plain Language A Course in Miracles, 4 Habits for Inner Peace, and Releasing Guilt for Inner Peace at www.acimmentor.com.
If you have a question the answer to which you think will help others send it to Liz@acimmentor.com and indicate that you want in answered in the ACIM Mentor Newsletter/Blog.