“When you are sad, know that this need not be. Depression is of the ego, and you are hiding little spots of hatred that are hurting you. Depression always arises ultimately from a sense of being deprived of something you want and do not have. Know you are deprived of nothing except by your own decisions, and then decide otherwise.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-4.VI.5:1-4)
We have been given everything, by God, to make our way through life easily and peacefully. On the surface, this sounds like an outrageous claim, but Jesus does say that we are “deprived of nothing except by your own decisions.” This sounds very akin to Jesus’ way of speaking of the law of attraction, in which what we focus upon, actually comes to be.
The law of attraction has been hot news since Rhonda Byrne and her team made a film entitled The Secret, and this was followed, by her, by books (The Secret, The Power, The Magic, The Hero). It is a very controversial idea, but the law of attraction says that we have to watch our minds for the scraps of fear that abide there, for we will make very bad things for ourselves if we focus on the negative. In The Power, Rhonda made clear the central place of love, and this book has spiritual aspects that would lead all of us to see that Love in religion, and love in the law of attraction, is a universal concept with universal ramifications.
Depression does wrap our mind up in knots. We can do much to dismiss depressed thoughts when they arise in us, as the psychologist Richard Carlson has made clear, especially in the books, Shortcut through Therapy, You Can Feel Good Again, and Slowing Down to the Speed of Life. He doesn’t think that we are doomed by brain chemicals to lead a depressed life; we have some say in how we thrive.
Jesus, in the passage for today, seems to say much the same. We all need compassion, and those who are depressed perhaps need more compassion than most. If we are trapped by depression, let us reach out to our brothers and sisters, including the medical establishment and the community of psychologists and psychiatrists.
Let us ask what we would want to think that we can’t seem to think now.
And that will hold the key.
3 thoughts on “Deprived of Nothing Except by Our Own Decisions”
Intriguing read. “It is a very controversial idea, but the law of attraction says that we have to watch our minds for the scraps of fear that abide there, for we will make very bad things for ourselves if we focus on the negative.” When you put it that way, it makes sense. Our minds are powerful and what we feed them tends to impact how we live. My experience with depression is that overtime we come to believe the enemies’ lies that we tell ourselves over and over again, chipping away at the very image of God within which we are made. Thanks for this post. Blessings.
Yes, it all comes down to how we decide to live our lives despite the bad things happening in it.
I never feel that you are “pushing religion down my throat” when I read your blogs. thank you for this uplifting and inspirational piece.