A New Way of Looking at Yourself

by Allen Watson

The following article is derived from my study of A Course in Miracles. This is what I hear the Course saying to me. I have put this in my own words, without direct reference to passages in the Course, but everything you read here is derived from the Course, processed through my mind. In writing these words I have felt as if Jesus were speaking to me, although I would not claim to have heard a voice, as Helen Schucman did. These are words I imagine he might be saying to me, so I have written them as if Jesus were speaking; you can decide for yourself how accurately I have "heard" him.

I have not yet fully realized these words for myself, but I know this is where I am heading. This is where we all are heading. In stepping back and letting him speak through me, I have felt as if I were finding the voice of my own heart. And that is the truth! Because the voice that speaks here speaks in all of us. I believe these words are a message from our true Self, addressed to me and to you. This, and only this, is what we truly are.


There is nothing wrong with you. There is nothing bad about you, nothing twisted or spoiled. You really are the innocent child of God.

You have looked at what you are, at thoughts you have had, at certain ways you have felt, and you have said, "You are a bad person!" You have thought what you saw in yourself was ugly and black, or pitiful and weak, or-worst of all-hopeless. You have judged yourself horribly and unmercifully.

I have good news for you. You were wrong!

It is so very, very hard to admit you were wrong, even about something as awful as this. Feeling this way about yourself is the only thing you know, the only way of being that you know. You identify with it. It is comfortable, somehow-even in its perverted sickness. Somehow you feel, "This is me. I'm at home with this. I'm afraid to even think I am anything else, anything better, because I would feel terribly, profoundly disappointed if I dared to hope, and then found out I'd been right in the first place. Better not to hope. Better not to dream that maybe, somehow, in some magical way, I might be innocent instead of guilty."

And yet you are wrong. The guilt you feel is without cause; nothing happened. You didn't sin. Not ever!

Oh, you did those things you remember. You said those awful words. The person you loved does indeed feel hurt, and hurt by you. We can't deny that.

What we can deny, though-what I and the Holy Spirit and God the Father deny-is that those things you feel so guilty about mean what you think they mean.

They do not mean you are evil.

They do not mean that you have "sinned."

They do not mean that you are cut off from God forever, or even for the tiniest tick of time.

They do not mean that you have somehow lost your innocence, which was given you as a gift of God in creation.

They do not mean that you are no longer a loving being.

They do not mean you are unworthy of love, unworthy of grace, unworthy of God's gifts, unworthy of health or life or abundance.

They do not mean you are no longer entitled to joy.

They do not mean you are damned.

They do not mean that anything of value has been lost or hurt or damaged.

You have been seeing your own thoughts, words and actions and deeming them to be sin, to be proof that you are no longer a child of God. And you have been wrong. I rejoice to tell you, you have been wrong! What God created holy cannot be corrupted.

It's all a matter of interpretation, you see.

These things that shame you, that make you feel so small, these dark secrets that you have never shared with another soul, or often wish you had never shared-you have looked at these things and judged them as "sin." What a silly idea! They are not "sins" at all. That's just a foolish notion you have had. A foolish notion that has played havoc with the world as you see it.

Because so much of what you have judged as dark and evil in yourself is unbearable-and there is so very, very much that you have judged in yourself-you have striven to project it outside yourself. You react violently when you think you see these things in other people because you are so very, very afraid to admit that those same dark thoughts exist in yourself. What you do not like in another is what you are afraid to see in yourself.

But you are afraid for no reason. These things in you are not "sin." That is only an interpretation that you have made, and it is an interpretation that is wholly unfounded. You have grossly undervalued yourself. You have misjudged yourself.

You attacked your brothers only because you believed you were deprived by them of something you needed. In reality you were never deprived at all; your attack came from ignorance. It was a mistake, not a sin. You can learn this about yourself by learning it about your brothers. When they appear to attack you, they are offering you a chance to bless yourself by blessing them-by seeing past the appearance of their ego to the reality of who they truly are. You feel lack in yourself because you insist on seeing lack in your brothers, and what you deny to them you deny to yourself.

You can't love yourself as your ego sees you, but you can realize that the ego, and the ego's picture of you, is not you at all. All you need to do is to deny the reality of this false, unloving self in your brothers. I have said, "Teach no one that he is what you would not want to be" (T-7.VII.3:8). As long as you continue to see evil in them, you will see it in yourself. Teach them, instead, of their abundance as God's Sons, and you will remember your own abundance.

You have been caught up in an insane whirlwind of self-judgment and self-loathing. How very wrong you have been! You are the beautiful child of God. You are everything you have ever been seeking for. Why else would you seek it? Love is what you know to be right, what youknow to be true, what you know to be good and holy and pure and awesomely beautiful. And you know that because that is what you are.

How awfully, terribly frustrating it has been all your life, to know what you ought to be, and to feel you never could be that! How sad, how tragic your life has felt!

Dear brother! Dear sister! Rejoice! For you have made no more than a foolish mistake! You are not the pitiful being you thought you were. You are still God's child. He is still your Father, and you are still just as He created you. Nothing has changed. You can be what you always knew you should be! You already are. You have never ceased being exactly that!

That you have pushed away love and recoiled from union only proves that you unconsciously believe in the reality of love and union. There are only two emotions, love and fear, and fear is nothing but a call for love.

Abandon your self-judgment. Let go of that self-doubt. Remove the crown of thorns and stop hammering in the nails; you are not guilty! You are not guilty! You do not deserve this crucifixion! God did not will this for you! You have chosen it for yourself. And it need not be!

You still have the power to choose to free yourself. You will never lose that power, no matter what you do, so I cannot feel despair or anxiety or even mild concern that you do not seem to hear me now. My joy is already full. I know that your hearing truth is inevitable. The nightmare can end the instant you choose to end it. And you will choose to end it, so my joy is already complete.

When you are able to look at every awful thing you have judged in yourself and see the truth about it—that it is nothing but your confused mind calling for love—you will be home. Your dark secrets are not sins. They are not weaknesses. They are not failures. They are your prayers from the heart, the evidence, the proof of your eternal innocence! They are the heart in pain over what it thinks it has done. They are the essence and flowering of life and love within you. They are not your damnation; they are your salvation. What you thought of as sins are in fact the proof that love still lives within you. They are the witnesses to the truth that love, in you, will never die.

2 Comments

  1. Tertia Mank
    Posted January 27, 2014 at 11:15 am | Permalink

    It’s true. But for some these things are so very hard to grasp because of preverbal experiences. You might want to explore the writings of Ingeborg Bosch (at least one of her books has been translated). Together with Jean Jenson she developed PRI, and there are some remarkable similarities that do not seem to be based on ACIM, yet can shed a new light to its teachings. Sometimes connecting to early repressed experiences is needed for true release. Thinking bad about oneself for instance is an early defense mechanism a child cannot help but use when its needs aren’t met at the time. It has to keep trusting the parents or ‘lose it altogether’. So it blames itself. As an adult we’re no longer dependent, yet we need to face what we could not face as a child in order to process it. Not to blame them, but to free ourselves. PRI is the best method I have found so far.

  2. Nicci Barker
    Posted January 27, 2014 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

    thank you for this message. Love coming into form, in the words of this post, flowing from mind to mind and entering my heart as i sit here and read them, filling me with warmth. Love and gratitude for this path, and for the Inner Teacher who reaches out from the words and mind of a brother, and within the quiet of our one shared mind, the same Voice, the same incomparable Love. everywhere, Love searching for Itself. finding me here. healing doubt. healing discouragement. endlessly. . . nicci

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