LESSON 7. I see only the past.
W-7.1. This idea is particularly difficult to believe at first. 2 Yet it is the rationale for all of the preceding ones.
3 It is the reason why nothing that you see means anything.
4 It is the reason why you have given everything you see all the meaning that it has for you.
5 It is the reason why you do not understand anything you see.
6 It is the reason why your thoughts do not mean anything, and why they are like the things you see.
7 It is the reason why you are never upset for the reason you think.
8 It is the reason why you are upset because you see something that is not there.
W-7.2. Old ideas about time are very difficult to change, because everything you believe is rooted in time, and depends on your not learning these new ideas about it. 2 Yet that is precisely why you need new ideas about time. 3 This first time idea is not really so strange as it may sound at first.
W-7.3. Look at a cup, for example. 2 Do you see a cup, or are you merely reviewing your past experiences of picking up a cup, being thirsty, drinking from a cup, feeling the rim of a cup against your lips, having breakfast and so on? 3 Are not your aesthetic reactions to the cup, too, based on past experiences? 4 How else would you know whether or not this kind of cup will break if you drop it? 5 What do you know about this cup except what you learned in the past? 6 You would have no idea what this cup is, except for your past learning. 7 Do you, then, really see it?
W-7.4. Look about you. 2 This is equally true of whatever you look at. 3 Acknowledge this by applying the idea for today indiscriminately to whatever catches your eye. 4 For example:
5 I see only the past in this pencil.
6 I see only the past in this shoe.
7 I see only the past in this hand.
8 I see only the past in that body.
9 I see only the past in that face.
W-7.5. Do not linger over any one thing in particular, but remember to omit nothing specifically. 2 Glance briefly at each subject, and then move on to the next. 3 Three or four practice periods, each to last a minute or so, will be enough.