Sunday, 12 August 2012

A Course in Miracles, Day 6

I am upset because I see something that is not there. 

Thus beginneth lesson 6.

Well, ain't THAT the truth.

I have to say, though, it didn't work so well for spiders...

...but when it came to situations that WERE upsetting me, even slightly, this kicked ass.

Unlike my calm, more laid-back friends, I weave stories around what's happened. This is a result of growing up in a household full of subtext, where things looked fine on the surface, but you had to work out what was REALLY going on.

This became my normal, and so I did a lot of 'deep practice' when it came to piecing together stories of what was really going on. Very few people can read - or even pick up the presence of - subtext like I can.

What this means is that I am absolutely fantastic at surviving a dysfunctional atmosphere; in fact, it feels like home. I'm not happy, but I know how to work it, though I often break through tacit agreements to keep silent - my ability to navigate dysfunction is in tension with my need to force subtext into the open.

Give me a healthy relationship/environment? Much, much harder. If it's all on the surface, it takes me a while to work that out; I keep looking for the bomb under the sofa, occasionally checking that there aren't any. I'm torn between wanting to just relax - no, make that collapse - into it and totally mistrusting it.

This exercise is a brilliant way to begin to nuance that, so I use that real talent when appropriate, but let it go when it's not.

I gave one example in yesterday's post, where I actually combined lessons 5 & 6 with person X, because I'd had time to analyse.

Today, I used it at church with parents putting prams in aisles (I'm annoyed at parents putting prams in aisles because I'm seeing something that's not there (selfishness).); work (I am worried about the QAA self evaluation document because I'm seeing something that's not there (incompetence at admin writing).); friends ('I'm annoyed at Y being late because I'm seeing something that isn't there (they don't value my time).') I used it for deeper situations as well, to begin to untangle them.

It works - the emotion eases immediately, and I'm more open to see what's really there. I can let go of the victim stance, the sense of being attacked (by myself or others), and I have freedom to move, to decide from love.

And if the subtext or negative reason really IS there? Then I can still act from love - because just as rock trumps scissors, love trumps fear.

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