When I first started studying A Course in Miracles, like many new students I struggled with its foreign, uncompromising concepts and kept testing it against the reality in front of my eyes. Especially hard to swallow, or hear, was the concept of the “Inner Voice.” I’d read about the Voice but still couldn’t buy it and started attending a weekly study group to help myself decipher and grasp the Course, pin down that elusive Voice, and apply it all to my hurting life.
Mark, the leader, opened one of the meetings with a specific reading about the mysterious inner voice: “Listen, and hear your Father speak to you through His appointed Voice . . . Hear only Him today . . . Hear one Voice today. . . . He would speak to you” (A Course in Miracles, Workbook, Lesson 106).
Sure, sure, I thought. I’ve always had a voice, maybe five or six. They figure things out, make lists, tell me how stupid I am, and once in a while congratulate me on a good phrase or chicken dish.
But I suspected that this wasn’t what he meant. “Hey, Mark,” I asked, “what’s the big difference between this voice of yours and all the regular stuffthat’s always going on in our heads? How do I know that voice isn’t my mother, my father, my shrink?”
Mark didn’t seem offended by my questions or reprimand me for being a “wisegal.” He didn’t answer right away and for a moment seemed to be listening. Then he said slowly, “When you quiet your mind enough, you’ll hear it. It gives you peace.”
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