This is a concept conveyed in A Course in Miracles. In essence; there is nothing I need to defend myself against. One wouldn’t have to linger long with these words before something would arise.
Years ago I heard a story, set in ancient times, of an old man who lived a quiet life, never harming anyone. At some point, a girl accused him of raping her, leading to him being taken before the judge. When time came for him to speak in “defense” of himself, he said nothing. He was not guilty, but he was found to be so.
Soon, the girl was found to be pregnant and the old man was told by the judge that he must take this girl and baby into his home and care for them. He did so, raising the child as if it were his own, without any comments or complaints. He continued on as the same man he was before … with no animosity.
This story is pulled from memory and although I sense it incomplete … it fits well with the topic of the day. This man took false accusations and burdens upon himself, never taking a defensive stance. It seems he truly was a man of another time.
Some would call him a fool … and perhaps he was, but his foolishness is particularly unsettling.
Imagine being truly defenseless, with an attitude lived of …
Do what you will.
Take what you will.
All is well.
Behind this way of being is a deep-seated trust that everything/All is unfolding perfectly … as it needs to … as it should. I’m imagining someone who has completely relinquished control of his life or at least it appears this is the case. He trusts implicitly, releasing to the flow of life. Whatever “it” requires of him is fine … because there’s purpose beyond the appearance. And it’s not an act that is held to for a scene or so. The story accentuates this to be his way.
This concept prompts many questions, if indeed it survives complete dismissal. But even if set to the side for a moment, it seems to nip at our heels like a pesky, persistent terrier. The ever-slight one is threatened by such a notion as this. This can certainly not be allowed to happen. What will others think? I will certainly not allow myself to become anyone’s doormat.
The questions, the observations … of how anyone could possibly maintain a stance of defenselessness … are quite valid in respect to the world we live in. But do we really know what our world should be like … and how we should be in respect to it?
Once during a study group on ACIM, a question was posed … if someone came in here right now and threatened our lives, would we fight? The answers swept across the board, one in particular catching my attention … from an older fellow in the group, likely in his late 60’s and a long-time student of the Course. He said, without hesitation, he would surely fight them. The bottom line is we don’t always know what we’d really do … but no matter the case, I found an interesting line drawn for most, including myself. It seems the line is found in the person of other people. Defending ourselves is one thing … but it all seems to shift when it comes to others.
But that’s almost too easy. The real challenge is when that “other me” is being attacked. That ever-slight one who gets his panties in a bunch over the damndest things. And that’s where I see this whole issue settling for true consideration. When I become “defensive” about whatever someone may say or do to me, is it due to some shadowed guilt? Should I know in the core of my being that there is no reason for me to be defensive? I’m really not sure … but in my estimation, the concept has teeth.
True, I may be reading a bit more into all of this than I should …