The Reinterpretation of Defenses

When you are afraid of ANYTHING, you are acknowledging its power to hurt you. Remember that where your heart is, there is your treasure also. This means that you believe in what you VALUE. If you are AFRAID, you are VALUING WRONG. Human understanding will inevitably value wrong, and by endowing all human thoughts with equal power, will inevitably DESTROY peace. This is why the Bible speaks of “The peace of God which PASSETH (human) understanding.”

THIS peace is totally incapable of being shaken by human errors of any kind. It denies the ability of anything which is not of God to effect you in any way. This is the PROPER use of denial. It is not used to HIDE anything, but it IS used to correct error. It brings ALL error into the light, and since error and darkness are the same, it abolishes error automatically.

True denial is a very powerful protective device. You can and should deny any belief that error can hurt you. This kind of denial is NOT a concealment device, but a correction device. The “Right Mind” of the mentally healthy DEPENDS on it.

You can do ANYTHING I ask. I have asked you to perform miracles, and have made it VERY clear that these are NATURAL, CORRECTIVE, HEALING, and UNIVERSAL. There is nothing good they cannot do. But they cannot be performed in the spirit of doubt.
Remember my own question, before you ask yours “Oh ye of little faith, wherefore didsth thou DOUBT.”
(Reference to Christ and the apostles walking on water.)

You have asked YOURSELVES why you cannot really incorporate my words (the idea of cannibalism in connection with the Sacrament is a reflection of a distorted view of shareing. I told you before that the word “thirst” in connection with the Spirit was used in the Bible because of the limited understanding of those to whom I spoke. I also told you NOT to use it. The same holds for expressions like “feeding on.”)

Symbiosis is misunderstood by the mentally ill, who use it that way. But I also told you that you must recognize your total dependence on God, a statement which you did not like.

God and the Souls He created ARE symbiotically related. They are COMPLETELY dependent on each other. The creation of the Soul itself has already been perfectly accomplished, but the creation BY Souls has not. God created Souls so He could depend on them BECAUSE He created them perfectly. He gave them His peace so they would not be shaken, and would be unable to be deceived. Whenever you are afraid, you ARE deceived. Your mind is NOT serving your Soul. This literally starves the Soul by denying its daily bread. Remember the poem about the Holy Family which crossed your mind last night:

“Where tricks of words are never said
And mercy is as plain as bread.”

The reason why that had such a strong impact on you originally was because you knew what it MEANT.

God offers ONLY mercy. Your own words should ALWAYS reflect only mercy, because that is what you have received, and that is what you should GIVE. Justice is a temporary expedient, or an attempt to teach man the meaning of mercy. Its JUDGMENTAL
side rises only because man is capable of INJUSTICE if that is what his mind creates. You are afraid of God’s will because you have used your own will, which He created in the likeness of His own, to miscreate.

What you do NOT realize is that the mind can miscreate only when it is NOT free. An imprisoned mind is not free by definition. It is possessed, or held back, by ITSELF. Its will is therefore limited, and not free to assert itself.

The three things that crossed your mind, which was comparatively free at the time, are perfectly relevant:
1. It is alright to remember the past, provided you also remember that ANYTHING you suffer is because of YOUR OWN ERRORS.

2. In this context, your remark that “after the burning, I swore if I ever saw him again, I would (not) (“Not” was written in later) recognize him. Note, by the way, that you did not put in the “not” until afterwards. That is because your inherent correction- device was working properly at the moment. The result is that you are NOT DENYING ME.

3. The story about Hinda. This was an excellent example of misperception which led to a totally unwarranted fear of a PERSON. (HS story refers to a very young child who fell down the stairs when HS had arms open in a welcoming gesture at bottom of stairs. For years afterwards, Hinda screamed upon seeing HS.) The mis-step which caused her fall had nothing at all to do with you, just as your own mis-steps have nothing at all to do with me.

Denial of error is a very powerful defense of truth. We have slowly been shifting the emphasis from the negative to the positive use of denial. Remember, we have already stated that denial is not a purely negative device; it results in positive miscreation. That is the way the mentally ill DO employ it.

But remember a very early thought of your own, “Never underestimate the power of denial.” In the service of the “Right Mind”, the denial of ERROR frees the mind and re- establishes the freedom of the will. When the will is REALLY free, it cannot miscreate, because it recognizes ONLY TRUTH.

Projection arises out of FALSE DENIAL. Not out of its proper use. My own role in the Atonement IS one of true projection, i.e., I can project to YOU the affirmation of truth. If you project error to me (or to yourself) you are interfering with the process. My use of projection, which can also be yours, is NOT based on faulty denial. But it DOES involve the very powerful use of the denial of error.

The miracle worker is one who accepts my kind of denial and projection, unites his own inherent abilities to deny and project with mine, and imposes them back on himself and others. This establishes the total lack of threat anywhere. Together we can then work
for the real time of peace, which is Eternal.

I inspired Bob (ref. to elevator man who took HS down from her apt.) to make that remark to you, and it is a pity that you heard only the last part. But you can still use that. His remark ended with: “Every shut eye is not asleep.” Since your own vision is much
improved at the moment, we will go on a while.

Freud’s identification of mechanisms was quite correct, as was his recognition of their creative ability. They can INDEED create man’s perception, both of himself and his surroundings.

But Freud’s limitations induced inevitable limits on his own perception. He made two kinds of errors.

The first is that he saw only how the mechanisms worked in the mentally ill.

The second is his own denial of the mechanism of the Atonement.

Let us take up the first, because a clear understanding of the second depends on it. Denial should be directed only to error, and projection should be limited to truth. You should truly give as you have truly received. The Golden Rule can work effectively only on this basis.

Intellectualization is a poor word, which stems from the brain-mind confusion. “Right- Mindedness” is better. This device defends the RIGHT MIND, and gives it control over the body. “Intellectualization” implies a split, whereas “Right-Mindedness” involves healing.

Withdrawal is properly employed in the service of withdrawing from the desert. It is NOT a device for escape, but for consolidation. There IS only One Mind. Dissociation is quite similar. You should split yourself off from error, but only in defense of integration.

Detachment is essentially a weaker form of dissociation. This is one of the major areas of withholding that both you and B. are engaging in.

Flight can be undertaken in whatever direction you choose, but note that the concept itself implies flight FROM something. Flight from error is perfectly appropriate.

Distantiation is a way of putting distance between yourself and what you SHOULD fly from.

Regression is a real effort to return to your own original state. In this sense, it is utilized to RESTORE, not to go back to the less mature.
Sublimation should be associated with the SUBLIME.

There are many other so-called “dynamic” concepts which are profound errors due essentially to the misuse of defenses. Among them is the concept of different levels of aspiration, which results from real level confusion.

However, the main point to be understood from these notes is that you can defend
truth as well as error, and in fact, much better.

So far we have concentrated on ends rather than means because unless you regard an end as worth achieving, you will not devote yourself to the means by which it can BE achieved. Your own question enabled me to shift the emphasis from end to means.
(Question asked was “how can we incorporate this material?”)
You and B. HAVE accepted the end as valuable, thus signifying your willingness to use defenses to ensure it.

The means are easier to clarify after the true worth of the goal itself is firmly established. Everyone defends his own treasure. You do not have to tell him to do this, because HE will do so automatically. The real question still remains WHAT do you treasure, and
HOW MUCH do you treasure it?

Once you learn to consider these two points, and bring them into ALL your actions as the true criteria for behavior, I will have little difficulty in clarifying the means. You have not learned to be consistent about this as yet. I have therefore concentrated on showing you that the means ARE available whenever you DO ask.

You can save a lot of time, however, if you do not need to extend this step unduly. The correct focus will shorten it immeasurably. Papers will be very easy to write as this time is shortened.