Lesson Nine

I see nothing as it is now.

This idea obviously follows from the two preceding ones. But while you may be able to accept it intellectually, it is unlikely that it will mean anything to you as yet. However, understanding is not necessary at this point. In fact, the recognition that you do not understand is a prerequisite for undoing your false ideas. These exercises are concerned with practice, not with understanding. You do not need to practice what you already understand. It would indeed be circular to aim at understanding, and assume that you have it already.
It is difficult for the untrained mind to believe that what it seems to picture is not there. This idea can be quite disturbing, and may meet with active resistance in any number of forms. Yet that does not preclude applying it. No more than that is required for these or any other exercises. Each small step will clear a little of the darkness away, and understanding will finally come to lighten every corner of the mind that has been cleared of the debris that darkens it.
These exercises, for which three or four practice periods are sufficient, involve looking about you and applying the idea for the day to whatever you see, remembering the need for its indiscriminate application, and the essential rule of excluding nothing. For example:

I do not see this typewriter as it is now.
I do not see this telephone as it is now.
I do not see this arm as it is now.

Begin with things that are nearest you, and then extend the range outward:

I do not see that coat rack as it is now.
I do not see that door as it is now.
I do not see that face as it is now.

It is emphasized again that while complete inclusion should not be attempted, specific exclusion must be avoided. Be sure you are honest with yourself in making this distinction. You may be tempted to obscure it.

A Course in Miracles states that Now is the only aspect of time that is real. This being the case, is it possible to experience war Now, or is it that we have the ability to project onto time a belief from the past?
The ability to see coincides with the ability to understand. When we see something we do not understand, we will attempt to find an explanation so it makes “sense” to us. The sense part of our Self is reasonable. Thus, sense and reason come together. The intellect analysis. It does not add sense to anything. We do this. The problem is our ability to reason has been unjustly influenced by our intellectual ability to see with the body’s eyes.
War is an unnatural skill learned through intellectually assigning meaning where there is none. Peace is a natural ability that falls naturally into place when reason is applied sensibly. That we believe and trust war more than we trust peace is a global testimony to the unreasonable assessment that we see nothing as it is Now.

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