Rules for Decision
A new beginning now becomes the focus of our curriculum. The goal of God and perfect happiness is near, but now you have specific methods for attaining the goal. These steps will lead you from dreams of judgment to forgiving dreams and out of pain and fear. Practice them awhile, until they are the rules and habits of thought by which you live.
Decisions are continuous. You do not always know when you are making them. But with a little practice with the ones you do recognize, a set begins to form which will consciously see you through the rest and will put you well ahead. If you find resistance strong and dedication weak, you are not ready. Do not fight yourself. But think about the kind of day you want, and tell yourself there is a way in which this very day can happen just like that. Start with this:
Today I will make no decisions by myself.
This means that you are choosing not to be the judge of what to do, and not reacting to the situation. Do not make up your mind first, and then react accordingly! This brings confusion.
This is your major problem now. You still make up your mind and then decide to ask what you should do -- instead of the other way around. And then what you hear may not resolve the problem as you saw first saw it. This leads to fear, because it contradicts what you perceive and so you feel attacked, and that is often followed by anger. There are rules by which this will not happen. But it does occur at first, while you are learning how to HEAR.
Throughout the day, tell yourself again the kind of day you want; the feelings you would have, the things you want to happen to you, and the things you would experience, and say:
If I make no decisions by myself, this is the day that will be given me.
These two procedures, practiced well, will serve to let you be directed without fear, for opposition will not first arise and then become a problem in itself.
But there will still be times when you have judged already. If you feel provoked to attack, quickly straighten out your mind to want an answer that will work. If you feel yourself unwilling to sit by and ask to have the answer given you, this means you have decided by yourself and therefore can no longer see the question. Now you need a quick restorative before you ask again for an answer and for the kind of day you want. Say:
I have no question. I forgot what to decide.
This cancels the terms you set by your answer, wipes the slate clean and lets the Holy Spirit’s answer be heard. Do not be tempted to believe the day you want is one in which you get your answer to your question as it would destroy the day by robbing you of what you really want, which is HIS answer. This can be hard to realize at first, but just go with it until you get it.
Now, if you are so unwilling to receive that you cannot even let your question or your answer go, you can at least begin to change your mind with this obvious conclusion:
At least I can decide I do not like what I feel now.
Having decided you do not like the way you feel, what could be easier than to continue with:
And so I hope I have been wrong.
This works against the sense of opposition, and reminds you that help is not being thrust upon you but is something you want and that you need. This tiny opening will be enough to let you go ahead with just a few more steps you need to let yourself be helped.
Now you have reached the turning point, because it has occurred to you that you will gain if what you have decided, if your answer to the question, is not so. Until this point is reached, you will believe your happiness depends on being right. But this much reason you have now attained: you would be better off if the ego is wrong, and the Holy Spirit is right. Now you can say in perfect honesty:
I want another way to look at this.
Now the readiness for asking is brought to your awareness. This is the statement of an open mind, not certain yet, but willing to be shown:
Perhaps there is another way to look at this.
What can I lose by asking?
It must be clear that it is easier to have a happy day if you prevent unhappiness from entering at all. But this takes practice in the rules that will protect you from the ravages of fear. When this has been achieved, the sorry dream of judgment will have forever been undone. But meanwhile, you have need for practicing the rules for its undoing.
In review, it is said you can begin a happy day with the determination not to make decisions by yourself. Yet this, too, is a decision. So the only real question is with what you choose to make them. That is really all. You will not make decisions by yourself whatever you decide. You will either make decisions with the Holy Spirit or with ego.
Do you not understand that to oppose the Holy Spirit is to fight yourself? He tells you but your will; He speaks for you. In His Divinity is but your own. And all He knows is but your knowledge, saved for you that you may do your will through Him. Even Heaven itself but represents your will, where everything created is for you. God asks no more than that He hear you call Him “Friend.” (T-30.II.1:1-12)
Know that your day is not at random. It is set by what you choose to live it with. You and your “advisor” must agree on what you want before it can occur. Let this be understood, and you can see there cannot be coercion here. It is but this agreement that permits all things to happen. Nothing can be caused without some form of union, be it with a dream of judgment (ego) or the Voice for God. Your judgment has been lifted from the world by your decision for a happy day. It needs but two who would have happiness this day to promise it to all the world. For they have understood the basic law that makes decisions powerful, and gives it all effects that it will ever have. It needs but two. And as you have received, so must you give.
Whose kingdom is the world for you today? Who will be your “advisor”? Decide for a happy day, and choose the only One Who will bring you happiness. Who is that only One? GOD IS!