Ask: What does the Course mean by "ideas leave not their source"?
“…What does the Course mean when it says: ideas leave not their source? I just can’t seem to get a true understanding of that.” LDP
“Ideas leave not their source, and their effects but seem to be apart from them. Ideas are of the mind. What is projected out, and seems to be external to the mind, is not outside at all, but an effect of what is in, and has not left its source.” (T-26.VII.4)
“There is no world apart from your ideas because ideas leave not their source, and you maintain the world within your mind in thought.” (W-132.10)
Your experience of peace or conflict is the effect of thoughts (beliefs) in your mind. You may project the source of your experience outward and feel that someone or something else has caused your experience, but that does not make it so. Your “world” (experience) has its source in your thoughts (beliefs, perceptions), which never actually leave you when you deny them by projecting them away.
For example, let’s say a friend has treated you in a way that you see as unfair. Because you believe this, you are angry with them. Your view of their actions determines how you experience their actions. After your initial emotional response (defensive anger), you can think it through. Did they really treat you unfairly? Was that their intention or an unintended consequence of actions they took? The answer you come to will determine whether you continue to be angry and whether you continue to have this person in your life. You also want to look at your own determination of their actions as “good” or “bad” or “right” or “wrong” and at the story you tell yourself with these judgements.
You see how you build your world with your thoughts? The source of your thoughts is you, not someone or something else. And your thoughts never leave you.
This is important to know so you can change your experience by changing your mind.
“A thought is in the mind. It can be then applied as mind directs it. But its origin is where it must be changed, if change occurs. Ideas leave not their source. The emphasis this course has placed on that idea is due to its centrality in our attempts to change your mind about yourself. It is the reason you can heal. It is the cause of healing.” (W-167.3)
Another corollary to this idea is that, as a thought, or part of, God’s Mind, you have never left God, your Source. Therefore, the ego’s (personal thought system’s) premise for guilt is erroneous.
“I walk with God in perfect holiness.
Today's idea but states the simple truth that makes the thought of sin impossible. It promises there is no cause for guilt, and being causeless it does not exist. It follows surely from the basic thought so often mentioned in the text; ideas leave not their source. If this be true, how can you be apart from God? How could you walk the world alone and separate from your Source?” (W-156.1)
“God wills you learn what always has been true: that He created you as part of Him, and this must still be true because ideas leave not their source.” (T-26.VII.13)
If you want to benefit from my experience and lighten your process, email me at Liz@acimmentor.com to set up an appointment for mentoring. Learn more at www.acimmentor.com.