Updated: May 20
No one can fail who asks to reach the truth. [W-p220.127.116.11]
I’m not gonna lie-lesson 131 has a LOTTA hells in it for my taste. But, despite the verbiage, what I believe Lesson 131 is trying to convey is-we create a hellava lotta suffering of our own making.
Pema Chodron tells a story about a monk who made it his life’s work to rid himself of his personal demons. He sequestered himself away from the others in a cave. And meditated diligently for hours every day. Just when he thought he was ‘cured’ of his personal afflictions, the demons showed up in his cave.
The demons partied in his cave. Taking over his peace and serenity. At first he was, understandably, irritated. Wasn’t he OVER these demons already?
Nope. We party on. Said the demons.
He tried everything to get them to go away. Pleading. Cajoling. Bribing. Even anger. Nothing. They elevated it to a louder techno dance party instead.
Finally, the monk decided to stop interacting with the demons and just witness. To allow whatever the demons wanted to do, to happen. And stop trying to control the outcome. Shortly after the demons left.
All but one.
This demon responded to nothing. No talks of enlightenment, or pleas of one-ness.
We all know that demon. The one that refuses to leave no matter what. So the monk crawled into its mouth and said ‘Just eat me up if you want to’. And then. Viola. That demon left too.
Sometimes we feel like life is full of our personal demons. That suffering within our personal hell is all we do. Day in. Day out. But Lesson 131 reminds us that, in our struggle, we are giving power to meaningless demons. And these demons are simply projections of our own thoughts.
When we can be present. When we can surrender. Like the monk crawling inside of the demons mouth. Completely. (Even to that one demon we think we will never be rid of.) We engage in timelessness. In mercy. In the transformational serenity that lives within each present moment.
Because resistance is what causes the counterforce that keeps our demons struggling within.
How do we do it? Ask to see things differently. Ask for the truth. Accept what is. Surrender to the holy place where dismal thoughts can not enter. Enter the mouth of the demon and watch the resistance melt away into what has always been yours to live. Peace, love and happiness.
All quotes are from A Course in Miracles, copyright ©1992, 1999, 2007 by the Foundation for Inner Peace, 448 Ignacio Blvd., #306, Novato, CA 94949, www.acim.org and firstname.lastname@example.org, used with permission.