Correcting "this is not real" Mistakes

A Course in Miracles reminds us that only the Truth is true (only God is real). Truth (formless Being) is Reality. The universe of form is not-Truth or is not reality. You come to understand this not through your intellect but through what I call a “higher” miracle. These are shifts in your perception where you actually experience the Truth as true and you see that the universe of form is not real. Sometimes the focus of the higher miracle is more on one or the other of these but what’s essential to understand is this is an experience not just an intellectual acceptance of an idea, or belief.

Here are three mistakes students make applying the idea “this is not real” to the world:

First, students try to apply this idea without having experienced it. This leads to feeling depressed and de-motivated: “Why should I bother doing anything when it isn’t real?” Until you have experiences that show you that the universe of form is not real just forget about applying this idea. You cannot apply it without misusing it unless you have experienced it. What you can do is be open to having experiences that show you that the world is not real. Instead of focusing on “this is not real” focus instead on growing your awareness of Truth in your everyday life. Your trust in Truth will grow and this will prepare you to have experiences that show you What is real and what is not real.

The actual shift that occurs from the experience of a higher miracle is release from guilt and fear. It is a joyful, uplifting experience. When you realize that you cannot affect Truth with anything that you do or do not do in the world you feel set free to allow the self to do what is authentic to it without judgment. It takes many higher miracles for this awareness to sink in, however. Right after a higher miracle you may experience the ego’s (personal thought system’s) resistance and feel de-motivated and depressed for a while. But you can always counter these by remembering the liberation that you experienced at the time of the miracle.  Once you have experienced a higher miracle you have a basis to start applying “this is not real” by remembering the higher miracle.

Another mistake that students commonly make is to try to apply “this is not real” to singular events or circumstances. “How can I see this horrible event is not real?” What you imply to your mind is that only this “bad” event is not real but everything else is real. It is impossible for your mind to accept this division. And it is also not an appropriate application. When you have an experience of “this is not real” it encompasses the whole universe of form, not just certain aspects of it. You must be willing to turn away from all illusion, not just those aspects that you judge as “bad”.

The third mistake is closely related to this last one. Students try to see that an event or circumstance, or even the entire universe of form, is not real while looking right at it. I don’t mean looking at it with the body’s eyes, because what the eyes report is neutral and has no meaning in itself. Students look right at their interpretation of the event or circumstance and at the same time try to see it is not real. But looking at it and interpreting it is exactly how you make it real to you! You cannot give illusion meaning and at the same time see it is not real. You cannot detach from illusion with the thought system that is part of it. You cannot be in the midst of illusion and see it is an illusion. You must step into the Awareness of Truth (Holy Spirit) to see that illusion is illusion.

In practice this means you have to be willing to turn your mind away from illusion and inward to Truth. Instead of focusing on what is not real, you must look toward What is Real. The body’s eyes may continue to report the same forms but your mind will shift toward Truth. The personal thought system’s interpretation will fall away and you will see the forms that the body’s eyes report as insignificant.


In fact, it is always best for you to allow the awareness “this is not real” to arise spontaneously. It will do so as you grow your awareness of Truth. If you have had experiences of seeing the universe of form is not real you can try to invite the experience again by applying “this is not real”, but if you do not experience a shift then stop trying. Instead, turn to Truth and the awareness will come.

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Comments

will said…
Proficiency. It's all we know to do.
nicci said…
liz,

thank you. yes. i recognize these errors.

the personal self is feeling increasingly unreal exponentially as connecting with the HS increases. noticing considerable increased discomfort when the personal self is dominating the mind. is this to be expected? i seem to be in an in-between state . . . unsettling.

thank you for all your help.

n
ACIM Mentor said…
Yes, Nicci, it is normal. Now that you know that there is an alternative you are no longer satisfied with merely adjusting to the ego. So it takes less to make you feel uncomfortable.
JL Castillo said…
Its wonderful, thank you
ES said…
These last 2 blogs are perfect examples of why I study with Liz. There are many teachers of the Course out there, some of whom I have had some form of contact with. They range from those who seem really knowledgeable, to ego-invested posers. None of them speak as directly to their students in terms of addressing the frustrations and mistakes we students make - mistakes in application and interpretation that actually increase guilt. If you want metaphors, warm fuzzy exchanges, platitudes, jokes, or a pat on the back you won't find them with Liz. What you will get is respect.
patricia said…
Excellent explanation of Real vs unreal, Liz. To experience Reality should be a student's top priority - it's the foundation for understanding ACIM. Otherwise, it may sound like just so much gibberish.
zenharp said…
Thank you so much, Liz. This is very helpful. I struggled for years with apathy due to thinking that matter doesn't matter, since it is all unreal. That's not a happy place for me.
will said…
My personal mind, the ego says, where are the people who have experienced the course? Other than Liz or Wapnick my mind has never read anything close to convincing. MM says the only people who have had this experience were either given it or had some inborn abilities that allowed them to access it. MM says what's with the twenty years? It says it makes no difference if I do the course because there is no me after death. MM SAYS WHAT's with the celestial speed up? Everything has already happened. Why are the only answers to these questions in the abstract? MM says what difference does it make to reach atonement once the body dies so does my identity. it's not like there is some special deal waiting for me after death. Regardless of what happens here in the dream it's the same end for everyone. And yet something happened to me and I keep plugging on. I'm typing on a kindle at 2:45AM so the spelling is what it is.
will said…
MM also says, in the UR Text there is a lot of back and forth between Jesus and Helen. They have a long history together going back to the crucifixtion. Absence of Felicity, Wapnicks book, has Helen remembering her many past lives, some with Bill. In her travels with Ken he relates deja vu that Helen has as they go on trips together. Deja vu from past lives. I didn't write this stuff I just read it. It sure makes for an uncomfortable fit with some interpretations of the course. For me, at my present understanding it is a perfect fit. But it really doesn't make any difference what MM thinks. I just like to write it down.
will said…
Helen is constantly complaining to Jesus about having been chosen to scribe the course. She says to Jesus, "Why me."? Jesus says, Because I knew you would do it. Helen and Bill had both been scribes centuries ago. Helen in one life was a priestess. If I remember correctly she was the Oracle of Delphi. But it has been years since I read this so I'm relying on memory.
Anonymous said…
You've got a long memory Will.
will said…
Ha! But how accurate is it? Was just rambling on last night.
will said…
I thought I would go back and try to find this Oracle of Delphi reference that I made. I haven't found it yet but what I did find in Absence of Felicity was a lot of references to Helen's "visions." She had visions that she was a priestess among other things. That may be where I saw it. I'll keep looking. The references to the UR Text and her conversations with Jesus is worth looking at on-line. I bought the UR Text years ago and it was the size of a huge telephone book. That was a long time ago and I'm sure it is more manageable now but you can read it on-line. My memory isn't so great when it gets down to specifics so take what I wrote with a grain of salt.
will said…
I promise this is the last comment on this stuff. If you get interested in looking at the UR Text, skimming is the way to go. Helen and Jesus's conversations are probably 50 pages into it but that's my memory again.
Christine said…
I am probably being not so smart, Will, but who or what is MM, please? It's probably obvious, so I apologize!
will said…
It stands for My Mind. I'm typing on a kindle Fire which takes some effort so I used MM. In 1973 Bill, Helen, Ken and Bills friend Chip visited Qumran, the Essene community where they found the Dead Sea Scrolls. Helen was overcome with emotion saying it was the holiest place on earth. She had seen one of the caves in an earlier vision. They could see the Dead Sea and Helen remarked it had been much higher in her vision. Bill, looking in one of the guide books said that 2000 years ago the sea level had been much higher. Helen had a strong pull to visit the cemetery used by the Essenes and she and Ken began walking over to it when Helen clearly heard Jesus say, "Let the Dead bury the dead." Ken said they stayed away and said Helen was sure she was buried there 1900 years ago.
Christine said…
YES! A fascinating read! Ken found a ring in the dirt in one of the caves...he later gave it to a guide there instead of bringing it home. I read Absence from Felicity over a decade ago, could be a little wrong...

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