You Do Not Need to Repress the Self's Emotional Needs

My last article about the egoic experience of personal alienation as one grows in their awareness of Truth seemed to cause some confusion and perhaps led to upset for some readers. I was not prescribing a course of action in that article. Instead I was describing what occurs naturally when one becomes aware of Truth and of their wholeness in Truth. It was therefore for those readers who have attained this experience naturally. It was not meant to suggest that those who have not attainted this experience naturally try to force detachment to occur through repression or denial of the self’s emotions or emotional needs.

So let me paraphrase that article another way: As your awareness of Truth grows and you find yourself feeling whole in that awareness the ego (personal thought system) will still persist in telling you that you are not whole and that you need to connect with others to be whole. Your choice is to accept the wholeness that you are experiencing or to continue to listen to and believe that the ego speaks for you.

At no time are the self’s emotional needs “wrong” or “bad”. Lack is simply the experience of the self. And the self is not reality so nothing about the self has any real meaning. You simply mislead yourself when you think that the self’s experience of lack is your experience of lack. However, you will be driven by lack until you experience wholeness in Truth and naturally detach from the self.

At no stage do you need to deny the emotional needs of the self. You will naturally detach from them when you experience wholeness in Truth and realize that the self is not you. This will not result in you repressing or denying emotions. This will result in you releasing yourself from defining yourself by them. The self will continue to have needs and to seek to fulfill them. But you will not define yourself by the self. You will merely observe it without judging it because you will recognize that it is nothing.

If you cannot understand how this can be then you have not yet experienced the detachment that will make this clear to you. You must first focus on growing your awareness of Truth. Then, in time, detachment from the self will come naturally and you will understand.

On a lighter note it was pointed out to me that my quote of the song from Rush was wrong.
“The underlying peace” should be “the underlying theme”. Oh, well. I heard what made sense to me…

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


hannah said…
there are so many experiences as we work our way through this course that start out as engendering fear but turn into something comforting and even beautiful.
hannah said…
there are so many experiences as we work our way through this course that start out as engendering fear but turn into something comforting and even beautiful.
Kelly Lewis said…
THank you for these past two blogs. I definitely experience alienation ,and for the most part am comfotable with it, but then ego creeps in, and tells me that I am antisocial, and therefore "wrong". These blogs were helpful, and encouraging.
nicci said…
this continues to clarify the process of returning. as i release all thoughts of separation and its resulting guilt and judgement to the Inner Teacher for undoing, as i release myself into Him, i am having the experience of a very brief falling away of personal boundary. this morning's sharing reminds me to keep returning my focus to strengthening my awareness of This Truth. thank you.
jerryo said…
The lack is like a vacuum , no fun , pretty painful , takes time to accept
ACIM Mentor said…
Jerryo, if you are only experiencing a sense of lack then you are listening only to the ego. You are not experiencing true detachment. What I wrote about in these two articles is an experience of feeling the lack of the ego, recognizing what it is, and then being able to turn to Truth to feel whole again. So you are able to detach from the sense of lack and rest in Wholeness.
It sounds like you may be experiencing what many students experience in the first years: the ego telling them that they have to give things up to do this process. So they deprive themselves needlessly and think that they are working the process.
jerryo said…
Thanks Liz ,

Ego is using my work situation , a big overbearing and
threatening corporation to keep the pressure on.
I know its flogging me ( or am i flogging me?)
The pain is of no value, is my mantra.
Thanks for replying

: - )
Sage Starfield said…
This was good Liz! Very well put. Love all the comments too.
Alienation comes and goes for me. I like my solitude, but then feel like I "should" interact more with others to share Truth, have more purpose. An ongoing theme for me. But ultimately it's not up to me to know how Truth wants to manifest in the world, and if we find ourselves feeling alienated by naturally moving away from something which no longer serves us, we should remember that we are simultaneously moving towards that which does! In this sense, even the "negative" feeling of alienation is informing us of this. We only need to look forward and not back... to say "Hello!" to where we're going instead of lamenting "Goodbye" to where we've been... because we never lose anything actually, right? Just change our perspectives?
Peace IS the underlying theme! : )
Frank C said…
Great articles, and wonderful sharing in the comments... this is definitely a subject I'm experiencing deeply at this very moment in my "evolution", so it is very "accessible" to me. My recent experience has been a very "real" death of the ego personality (and it's stories, beliefs, projections and perceptions)to the point that I have been pretty much "living" in an empty and meaningless world.

There is some confusion and a certain sadness as I mourn the end of all I thought was real (my small self), but there is also a growing connection to my True, Authentic Self (The Truth In Me), and I'm temporarily vacillating between these two "worlds". I've let go of the old (illusion), but have not fully embraced the "new"... the only thing that brings me any happiness and peace is when I remember to stay focused on the Truth in the One Mind of God. The stuff I think I'm missing never existed anyway, and whatever comes of this, I'm far more better off living in the Truth (and the temporary discomfort of the transition period) than I was when I was pretending to live in the dream of separation.

The Truth shall set you Free!
Anonymous said…
I have not commented for awhile as I realized with forgiveness, I did not know half the time what I was talking about. Now I understand I was just holding onto that worldly self as I was shifting away from her. Frank mirrored much of what I am experiencing so thank you, thank you all and thank you Liz. This blog has been, well I'll quote my late husband, "the pillow that softens the fall".
will said…
If you have a copy of Liz's '4 Habits for Inner Peace' check out page 73, ' The Unity of Truth instead of Personal Joining' for more on this topic.
hannah said…
ive been studying and practising applying the ideas in lesson 78, 'let miracles replace all grievances' and thats really helping me to see that i can actually use this feeling of alienation in regard to people, to turn toward the truth in myself and in them. and when i do that, that person whom i felt alienated from then becomes a.. conduit, or trigger, to my experiencing connection, oneness. i mean.. yes, my mind chooses to go in that direction, but without the trigger of feeling separate, which my feeling toward the 'other' person provided, i wouldnt have been mindful enough to turn toward the truth in both of us. i go from associating that person with feelings of upset and difference in my mind, to connecting that person with a feeling of sameness and gratitude. until the next time ego is triggered.. and then i apply the lesson again ;) and again, and again.. laugh!
so its a matter of practising 'detaching from egos use of detachment.. (making the individual self/story real and important) and attaching to holy spirits application of detachment (realising only oneness (or at least.. sameness) is real)'.

this is just using more words to say what liz already concisely said.. 'What I wrote about in these two articles is an experience of feeling the lack of the ego, recognizing what it is, and then being able to turn to Truth to feel whole again. So you are able to detach from the sense of lack and rest in Wholeness.'
will said…
This is just my experience with practicing the Course but I don't ever remember having any recognizable results/experience directly after practicing a tenant of the Course. There probably has been but I just can't remember any. Any recognizable results seem to come as part of the overall changes taking place in my spiritual life. Maybe that's for the best. If I got to expecting an experience or feeling every time, the ego would have a heyday.
hannah said…
you never felt simply uplifted, or lighter of heart, will, even if just for a while? but yeah, i hear you, it can be hard for me not to chuck impatience-induced wobblies, and resistance to now wobblies.. though less difficult with time and practise! im remembering liz saying something along the lines of 'read others experiences but try not to compare their experiences with your own.' i certainly found that difficult the first time i did the lessons.. the lessons said 'practising x will lead to y', and i compared what i was experiencing to what the course said was possible. i wasnt in touch with other students, or yeah.. the ego would have doubled its drama around comparison, im sure!
will said…
h. maybe I exaggerated a little in what I said. Most every time I sit down for coffee with the HS in the morning there is an immediate contact. This stays with me throughout the day. Questions for the HS are usually answered in the two to three day range although in morning meditation they may come quicker. As I'm writing this I think my comment was about either developing an expectation (God on tap)to feel something or using that as proof of progress. I "over spoke" and need to think about this some more. Thanks h.
Christine said…
Frank - made me laugh, when you said, "The stuff I think I'm missing never existed anyway..." Gee whiz - I feel like I am reading my own thoughts here, and in all of these contributions. Why is that, Liz?
ACIM Mentor said…
Because our experiences are universal, Christine.
These comments have been so helpful. They have brought more clarity to my own experiences....I particularly identified with Sage and Frank's sharings, really grateful and uplifted by the Mighty Companionship of us all. And Liz...thank you for all you are and give... you touch the core of things so deeply and yet with no is a silent Power...I can feel It within, past all sense of personal being. gratitude!!!

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