Wednesday, August 24, 2005


Note: Laura will be traveling for a couple days, so the next entry will be on Friday, Aug. 26. Have a great Thursday!

…Ged said at last, "…It may be that I must spend my life running from sea to sea and land to land on an endless vain venture, a shadow-quest."

"Avert!" said Vetch, turning his left hand in the gesture that turns aside the ill chance spoken of. For all his somber thoughts this made Ged grin a little, for it is rather a child's charm than a wizard's; there was always such village innocence in Vetch. Yet also he was keen, shrewd, direct to the center of a thing.

--The Wizard of Earthsea, by Ursula LeGuin

When I was a kid, I developed my own version of "Avert!"

I didn't have many friends back then. Accepting the idea that no one liked me probably contributed to the cycle of not making friends, so this went on for years.

Then, as I've described before, I went to camp, and learned more about being a child of Love. That because Love created me, I must actually be lovable.

Thinking it through, I came to the conclusion then that whenever someone appeared to not like me, that was just what Mary Baker Eddy describes as "mortal mind."

See, to my child mind, Christian Science explained that whatever my five physical senses told me was not the real picture. It couldn’t be true because it wasn't spiritual. Only spiritual sense would tell me what I needed to know. And only spiritual sense would reveal what people needed to know about me.

Believing what the senses said implied that you were taking on the mind of mortality, because everything physical ultimately dies. This "mortal mind" always leads us falsely.

So, when someone was mean to me, I reasoned it through thusly.

  • The only things telling me about the meanness are my eyes and my ears. I wouldn’t know about the meanness if I didn’t believe my eyes and ears.
  • My spiritual sense tells me that this person being mean is really a child of God. They're not actually capable of meanness, because they're made by Love, just as I am.
  • The appearance of meanness is just mortal mind.
  • We're both loved and lovable. I am going to love.

The more I did this, the quicker it got, until eventually the thought process winnowed down to, "That's just mortal mind."

And this little "spell" if you will had an interesting effect over time. Conflict would arise in some form, be it irritation or anger or meanness, and it would begin to bother me and I'd feel unliked. But that feeling became a reminder in and of itself. I'd do my own mental "Avert!" and think, "That's just mortal mind."

Recognizing conflict as mortal mind allowed me to shake it off of myself and to respond with love. As I grew, I expanded this to include suggestions of illness or depression or loneliness. Whenever something inharmonious came my way, if I successfully met it with "That's just mortal mind," I was better able to master it. It helped awaken my spiritual sense and discern what is spiritually true.

I still perform this mental "Avert!" when needed. "That's just mortal mind" is step one of turning from the sense evidence and inviting Spirit to the table, and it helps me even now.

Your ideas and inspiration are welcome! Please comment below or Contact Laura.
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At 8/25/2005 11:30:00 PM, Blogger Rev. Veronika Birken said...

Dear Laura,
I remember a story called: The Seven Little Kids. This story tells about these kids and their mother. One day the mother wanted to go out to gather food and leave the little ones behind. She intended to lock the door but also warned them not to listen to any other voice than hers. Well, off she went and lo and behold the wolf got an appetite for little kids. He knocked at the door and asked to be let in. The kids asked who it was and the wolf pretended to be the mother. But the kids weren’t fooled and told him that his voice was much too rough to be their mother’s. Off he went to the grocer’s to get a piece of chalk which he ate to make his voice soft. When he returned a second time to the house of the little kids, they again wouldn’t let him in because he had put his black paw on the window sill and thus they rejected him again. Now the wolf went to the miller to get some white flour to put on his paw. When the kids saw the white paw, they opened the door and the wolf devoured them. (Told after the Grimm’s Brothers)
To me this so clearly indicates how very careful I have to be before I can say that it is the Holy Spirit (spiritual sense) that is talking to me because mortal mind loves playing ‘make belief’ and it loves to disguise itself and fool us.
I have learned something of importance in my experience of listening to Holy Spirit (the Voice for God in me):
1. He never gives me any advice.
2. His Voice is always gentle, loving and quiet.
3. He only reminds me of the truth; that is, God and my true Self.
4. He always lifts my thoughts to a higher perspective.
5. His message brings a peaceful and joyful certainty and with it healing.

Love and peace and joy are in you now, Veronika


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