Thoughts that Illuminate


It is what you Think they are Saying that Hurts

One day I was having a conversation with a very close friend. I don’t remember the specifics but I do
remember that as we were talking I became increasingly disturbed. I could have sworn that she was
attacking my position on something, accusing me of not being right, and overall not caring about
what I thought.  The conversation was so unsettling that I made up an excuse to leave. I returned
home and asked the Holy Spirit for relief from the pain and suffering I experienced while being with
my friend. I was reminded of the Course teaching in lesson #15; “what I think I “see” is an image I
have made from my thoughts.”  In the situation with my friend this idea seemed to hard to grasp….
only imaginings? I am suffering only from my thoughts that are making images? The pain and
suffering from the conversation seemed to be coming from her and not from my thoughts! I have
developed a trust that the Course’s teachings if applied will bring me to peace so I asked the Holy
Spirit for help in understanding how this could be true.  

That night I was given a dream.  In the dream I walked into a house full of people. It seemed to be a
communal living arrangement where everyone was living harmoniously.  I heard a noise that
sounded like an alarm.  Confused I turned to the people in the room for an explanation of the
alarm.  I was told not to be concerned about it.  The alarm only meant that the electric system is
turning on.  (Sure enough all the lights and TV had turned on for a moment and then turned off).  I
traveled into the kitchen and I observed two people at the sink having a lovely time cutting up
vegetables.  The women’s ring fell into the garbage disposal.  Laughing she reached down to
retrieve it.  All of a sudden I heard the alarm.   My mind immediately remembered what the alarm
meant- and I closed my eyes because I couldn't’t bear to watch.  But closing my eyes did not give
me relief; for I began to imagine the scene in front of me….the garbage disposal turning on, blood
everywhere, fingers flying everywhere; laughter turned to screams.  As the scene played out in my
mind I experienced a sickening feeling, along with anguish, pain and fear. It was all in my
imagination (remember I had my eyes closed) and yet I was experiencing it as if I was really seeing
it! As I awoke, I realized I had no idea what really happened because I never opened my eyes in the
dream and yet, I still suffered because of my imaginings. Suddenly it was clear to me how we can
have seemingly “real” experiences that are really only from our imagination.  

A friend attacking seems like a powerful image of pain and suffering so does a hand in a garbage
disposal. Maybe you have a few of your own images before you that seem to be the cause of your
pain and suffering. Do you see someone attacking you?  Mistreating you? Telling you of your
unworthiness?  Stop for a moment and see it from this perspective. .  In the conversation with my
friend and in the dream, there was a pivotal moment when I closed my eyes to what was really
happening and began to imagine a conversation of attack and accusations.  Like me, you have also
closed your eyes and are imagining what is happening.  This imagining is so powerful that you are
actually experiencing it as if it is happening right before your very eyes. (Just like the garbage
disposal scene).
 “You think you think them so you think you see them and it is because they are
appearing as images you do not
recognize them as nothing.” (W.#15.)  Just because the image is
powerful and appears real , it is still nothing; just an image made from a thought of guilt and
projected onto the screen of your life. In other words your thoughts of guilt have turned to mental
images that are parading through your mind appearing as attack and mistreatment.  

The Holy Spirit wants to ease your mind with thoughts of peace and therefore bring peace to the
world you see but first you must realize that what you are currently seeing are just imaginings; a
darkened world made from darkened thoughts. Second you must be willing to release your
darkened thoughts that condemn to thoughts that save.  
“I can elect to change all thoughts that
hurt.” (W. #284)
is our liberty bell ringing for our freedom. We are free to change our thoughts.
When we allow this change to happen, we realize:
“Your (God) Thoughts can only bring me
happiness. The Thoughts I think with You can only bless.” (W.#281)

If we want to stop the hurt then we must be willing to release our own thoughts that are making the
image of an unkind friend (fill in your image) appear before us.  Once I went through the process of
release,   I was completely free of pain and suffering.  When I went back to my friend to share this
experience with her, she conveyed to me that the words I thought she said were not in her mind at
all and she was totally amazed at my wild imagination!  

I invite you to try this process on your own dark imaginings.  (Click                                    for a
printable copy of the process I was guided to use for this release.) Accept the Holy Spirit’s answer
to every one of them; “How can a Holy, innocent, child of a loving Creator be or experience
imperfection, failure, sin and guilt?  My my, You do have a wild imagination!”

Written by: Patti Fields