Anger and fear are attempts to separate

Wednesday, May 10, 2023 1466 words 6 mins 30 secs
An A Course in Miracles Blog  © 2023 Paul West

When you are angry, you are using projection to try to make someone guilty. It's really an attempt to take some guilt or pain or upset from inside of you and push it out onto the world.

"ALL anger is nothing more than an attempt to MAKE SOMEONE FEEL GUILTY."

When you do this, if you watch carefully, you may notice a sensation of "separating off". While it seems like you are attacking outwardly, as if pushing something onto the world, you also feel a sense of withdrawing, distancing, stepping away. As though you are breaking off from the thing you're attacking and being more separate from it.

Although the feeling you have may be one of hurt or pain or guilt or justified anger, which you're trying to accuse someone else of, the actual side effect is that you are attacking yourself from the outside in and pulling yourself away from others. So you simultaneously are pushing and pulling at the same time, which splits the mind, like ripping it apart. It's this splitting that actually produces suffering.

"Projection will ALWAYS hurt you. It reinforces your belief in your own split mind, and its ONLY purpose is to KEEP THE SEPARATION GOING. It is solely a device of the ego to make you feel DIFFERENT from your brothers and separated FROM them."

What this means is that you are trying to "separate from" what you see. In the workbook there is a curious lesson which speaks of you joining with what you see instead.

"For vision CAN but represent a wish, because it has NO power to create. Yet it can look with love or look with hate, depending only on the simple choice of whether you would JOIN with what you see, or keep yourself apart and separate."

"Today we are trying to use the new kind of projection. We are not attempting to get rid of what we do not like by seeing it outside. Instead, we are trying to see in the world what is in our minds, and what we want to recognize is there. Thus we are trying to join with what we see, rather than keeping it apart from us. That is the fundamental difference between vision and the way you see."

When I first read this in Lesson 30 I had no clue what it meant by "joining with what you see." Like, how do you do that? How do you join with a world which is supposed to be an illusion? How am I not joining now? Surely I'm not separated off, in a position to need to join?

But for sure when we are angry and expressing ego pain we are indeed separating off. We attack in anger and hatred. We make everything an enemy. We make the whole world wrong and condemn it for its shortcomings. And while doing this, our own mind is actually splitting.

The split then seems to take place between you and the other, or you and the world, not realizing that part of your mind includes them and is in them. So you split off from the fact that you are here AND there. And then you see yourself as only here, and not there. This is something you can actually notice happening in your mind while you do this.

To join with what you see then means to stop attacking, stop splitting, stop projecting guilt, stop making guilty, and essentially, "stop separating."

The separation from God wasn't just some ancient moment of leaving heaven. It was a movement into a dissociated state in which your mind becomes split, and then attempts to continue that state indefinitely. The separation was the beginning of the war upon yourself, and the ego tries to keep it going.

It is something that takes place in your mind between your mind and itself. It's actually a form of dissociation. It's a way whereby you experience internal conflict and attack upon yourself, split off part of yourself and see it as a separate enemy.

"Exclusion and separation are synonymous. So are separation and dissociation. We have said before that the separation was and IS dissociation, and also that once it had occurred, projection became its main defense, or the device which KEEPS IT GOING."

So notice here that Jesus is saying we've put ourselves into a separated state by attacking ourselves and splitting our mind, AND then we KEEP IT GOING, by projecting it through hate onto what SEEMS to be stuff outside or separate from yourself, in order to REINFORCE the idea that "it" IS separate from yourself, in order to keep perpetuating separation.

So if you are angry at something, you are trying to be separated off. And if you'll notice, if you attempt to "not separate", ie not attack, your projection of guilt subsides and your ego deflates and you stop projecting and separating. And what you then experience is more of a sense of unity or wholeness, a sense of joining ,a sense of love and connection.

You can actually try to "not separate", ie to not resist, attack, push away, condemn, judge, or make guilty, etc. Instead embracing and opening and allowing and accepting, loving and sharing and joining. Separation is you REJECTING stuff, trying to EXCLUDE it.

So really the question is, are we walking around being separators, or are we walking around being joiners? Are we attacking or healing? Are we projecting guilt or withholding judgement? Are we broadcasting hate and hurt or are we giving love?

"What you project you disown, and therefore DO NOT BELIEVE IS YOURS. You are therefore EXCLUDING yourself from it, by the very statement you are making that you are DIFFERENT from someone else. Since you have also judged AGAINST what you project, you attack it because you have already attacked it BY rejecting it. By doing this UNCONSCIOUSLY, you try to keep the fact that you must have attacked yourself FIRST out of awareness, and thus imagine that you have made yourself safe."

If you exclude, ie attack, ie project guilt, you are increasing separation and insanity. By excluding, you are separating off. This is forming an ego or a sense of being separate. When you are separate you will feel like the whole world is against you and that you are at war with it, that you have taken a side against it and are not on the same side as it or anyone else. This is because there is internal conflict in the mind. An excluding mind is a split mind, because it does not want to share a single space with anyone else. Another word for joining is INTEGRATION.

You may also notice that fear produces the same split mind, the same separation, and the same desire to push something away. Fear is an attempt to run away from and thus separate off from something else. There is a pulling away and a sense of wanting to be separate or distanced from something. To get away from it.

This is a rejection, just as the projection of guilt through anger is also secretly an attempt to reject. Anger seems less obvious of a rejection because it has overtones of attack aimed outward, but subtly you'll find that fear also is a form of attack in a more passive way. If anger is over outward attack, with subtle withdrawal, fear is overt withdrawal with subtle outward attack. Both are just more forms of the same attempt to SEPARATE. "Fear produces dissociation because it induces SEPARATION. Healing ALWAYS induces harmony because it proceeds from integration."

"When you think you are projecting what you do NOT want, it is still because you DO want it. This leads DIRECTLY to dissociation, for it represents the acceptance of two goals, each perceived IN A DIFFERENT PLACE, separated from each other BECAUSE YOU MADE THEM DIFFERENT. The mind then sees a divided world OUTSIDE ITSELF, but NOT within. This gives it an illusion of integrity, and enables it to believe that IT is pursuing one goal. As long as you perceive the world as split, YOU are not healed. For to be healed is to pursue one goal, because you have ACCEPTED only one, and WANT but one."

"Can you be separated from your identification and be at peace? Dissociation is NOT a solution; it is a DELUSION."

"What better vocation could there be for any part of the Kingdom than to restore it to the perfect integration that can make it whole?"

"The mind always strives for integration, and if it is split, and WANTS TO KEEP THE SPLIT, it will believe it has ONE goal by MAKING IT ONE."

"True depth perception becomes possible only at the highest order of perceptual integration."

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