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Sink into happiness

“Magic is becoming the new norm.”— Bentinho M. Assaro

Forest-Bathing-1024x832It’s open window season where I live which means some of my best teachers wake me up each morning with their chorus of joy.

These teachers (most people call them birds) are out there riffing on the day, blaring songs that will never be sung in just that arrangement again. They’re not reading self-help literature or wondering how to heal their childhood wounds.

Likewise, the sun rose this morning with a brand new palette of colors. It painted a one-of-a-kind vista unique to my GPS coordinate on this big stone hurtling through space. It’s not mad at the president or worrying about nuclear war.

The natural world is my best teacher.

Those cardinals and tree frogs trilling advertisement for mates? The squirrels using my fence as a tightrope?  They’re my mentors when it comes to ACIM Lesson 122.

In a nutshell, it says, “clear your mind of all dead thoughts.”

The mother fox parading her kits alongside the road is not obsessing about work or whether or not her butt looks big.

Worry, anxiety, fear, whether or not your butt looks big—all dead thoughts.

Being sealed inside, glued to a smartphone or to a box with 292 channels—dead thoughts.

Forgiveness (which this lesson promises will give us everything we want) is simply letting go of all dead thoughts (and that’s anything that’s not happening right this very now).

Today, I’m going to go outside, listen to the soundtrack of nature, check out the new episode playing every hour in my backyard.

I’m going to follow my mentors in the natural world who neither toil nor sow, neither worry nor fret.

Dead thoughts be gone.

Pam Grout is the author of 19 books including E-Squared, E-Cubed, Thank & Grow Rich and her new book, Art & Soul,Reloaded: A Year-Long Apprenticeship to Summon the Muses and Ignite Your Daring, Audacious, Creative Side.

30 Responses

  1. Pam…Thank you so much! I wake each morning to the Seagulls squawking their own sweet songs. They are the perfect alarm clock and never let me down. They remind me each morning of my childhood dream, to live by the ocean. Born in Indiana and having never seen the ocean or California, yet two of my childhood dreams were that….to live by the ocean in California. Adults around me laughed at such a young girl with “silly” thoughts.

    It is thirty years now I have lived in Carmel-by-the Sea. It is my home and where my children were raised.

    My dear noisy screeching gulls remind me of this each morning. Thank you for your post today and a chance to share my little wonder of nature.

    Daily I read these lessons. They continue to be part of my morning practice.

    Amazing, epic, magical, things are HAPPENING to me today….

    1. Reading your post I felt as though I was there by the ocean listening to your seagulls😊

      1. Me too! Thank you, Kate, and thank you, Pam, for reminding me where my teachers are.

      2. Linda, Thank you so much for sharing that thought. They are such chatty little creatures. Your comment means a lot to me. 🙂 Kate

      3. Linda and Connie,
        I think I replied to your sweet thoughts in the wrong places. Anyway…
        I loved that you both shared about the dear Sea Gulls…The ocean offers such an abundant life style. Between the birds, waves, countless magical sea creatures and the ocean smell, it is indeed a piece of heaven…If you are ever in Carmel I will buy you lunch…
        All the Best,

    2. Kate, I lived on ocean front property for 20 years. It was awesome! I loved feeding the sea gulls, fish, and iguanas. Thank you for sharing your wonder of nature.

    3. Hi Kate and Pam
      Pam this is perfect! Thanks 🙏
      Kate we need to meet!
      My story is similar. I’m in PG This weekend I’m having a retreat. The focus is on morning practice but more than that. Just appreciating how awesome the morning is! A new beginning every day and listening to the amazing birds and watching the sunrise etc. Thanks for sharing 💕

  2. Surrounded by the beautiful pink and white flowering trees..Springtime on Long Island is magnificent. I am headed out for my daily walk in nature grateful for the veil being lifted in my mind and before my eyes with this course and your insightful messages Pam 💖

  3. My son was here for a week doing chores for his old mom and commented once again on the birds around my house waking him up. I love the birds and get up with them if not waking them. 😉 I’ve had owls hooting and frogs croaking in chorus for the last month of rain. I loved every minute of it and it reminds me of all the good in my life. When I leave this planet, it will be with no regrets, no grudges and no words left unsaid. At least kind words. I never say mean things because you can never take them back. Dead thoughts bury you and I’m in no hurry to get to that part. 😉 Thanks for making this so very clear.

  4. Ah the synchronicity! I was just read ACM this morning! It’s incredible when you start your morning off in an inspirational and uplifting way how the veil of society starts to shift and your day is no longer consumed by the desire to be consumed…instead you’re able to see the beauty in the world, feel the warmth of the sun, soak in the sweetness of the season’s changing air. Thank you for this post, I’m taking it as an affirmation! Big love to you, Xx.

  5. Dear Pam, This could be your best post yet, and certainly one of my favorites! I love the way you break it down into relatable bite size pieces! I’m so very grateful for you & your sharing of your wisdom!

    Thank you Thank you Thank you!!!

    A big fan, Mary

    Live Beautifully, Mary Lindsey Wilson, ASID

    designer . muse . possibilitarian http://www.LiveBeautifully.net Sent from my iPhone


    1. Agree 110% !!!
      I have been doing the Course for 228 days now, and it means more to me since Pam began shedding a new perspective. I have been back to revisit many-a lesson, and am embracing ACIM all the more!!!
      Thank you, Pam!!!!

  6. Thank you, Pam.

    I was sitting here listening to the sparrows, who just this morning returned to their annual nesting spot, in my chimney. I was watching a beautiful Finch eating at my newest bird feeder, and like you, I was, once again, in love with the open window, cool morning air and the delightful voices of Spring. I appreciate the wisdom that giving my attention to the fiasco we have allowed in Washington, is truly a dead thought. I frequently find myself challenged by the feeling that I must lend my voice to the resistance and the realization that in so doing I take my energy to a place where I do not want it to be.

    I have Hostas to go plant and a new Hummingbird feeder to hang, so I shall join you, outdoors, dancing in the beauty, which surrounds us, in our midwest home.

    I love you and am very grateful for your profound, timely reminders


  7. This is perfect for me! Dead thoughts be gone!! I am also awaking to the symphony of Redbirds, woodpeckers, and other critters. The trees are magical. Awaking from a long sleep.
    Thank you again!

  8. If you’re waiting to be happy you’ll be waiting a long time, and nothing will satisfy you. “If not now, when?” – Primo Levi.

  9. Thank you, Pam. Dead thoughts are gone. The first thing I do each morning is take our three dogs for a walk. Key deer (small deer that are on the endangered species and are only in this area) greet us first. Birds sing and the dogs point out what is unusual, such as a turtle. I loved living on the ocean for 20 years but there’s nature here in this area too. And as we walk each morning, I am at peace.

  10. Yes! I didn’t think of today’s lesson in this way, so thank you. “Forgiveness (which this lesson promises will give us everything we want) is simply letting go of all dead thoughts (and that’s anything that’s not happening right this very now).” I like that!

    The “dawn chorus” was beautiful this morning! The Orioles are back, yesterday I saw a pair of Rose-breasted grosbeaks at my feeder, and a coyote trotting through the woods.

    Today I cleaned some windows to let this beautiful spring sunshine in, and took some unwanted decorative items to the food pantry thrift store. If they’re not blessing my life, let them bless someone else’s, both the person who buys them, and the people who benefit from the food pantry. Then I got out in the garden to do a little late cleanup.

    Now for a little relaxation.

  11. Hi Pam, I’m really enjoying your down-to-earth interpretations of A Course in Miracles which can be a little hard to follow at times. But I have a question: Is it normal to experience resistance to these teachings and maybe even become a little depressed? For example, the more I try to focus on happiness and forgiveness, the more I find negative thoughts arising.

    I’m on the verge of stopping but I wonder if this is part of the process. I don’t have a history of depression.

    Thanks, Sue


  12. Thankyou Pam! Marvellous! I usually wake or get up in time for the dawn chorus here in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne but today I missed it because I’m already on a train (6.15am) to the city and I don’t think the birds have even started yet because it’s still black as night. However I love lying in bed listening to the chorus begin one bird at a time until it’s a magical symphony of song. It soothes my soul and warms my heart, and I feel so grateful for these simple pleasures of amazing nature. Your message is just so true – nature, the birds, the animals, the trees etc are our teachers and our friends, and I am so grateful I can enjoy these daily blessings. I also totally love the statement: “Dead thoughts be gone!” Yes! Let it go. Be here now. Forgive the past, including the moment just a moment ago. Wow, this stuff is pretty powerful really when you really delve into it. Thanks for helping us all to see more clearly and live more freely. Your insights are precious and appreciated and I receive so much when I open “a post from Pam” 😁💗🌷

  13. Thanks for this inspiring post, Pam! So much to be thankful for indeed and Mother Nature is our most wholesome teacher!! Hugs to all.

  14. Love love love this post! The birds and all animals are such good teachers. The dawn chorus is glorious, and worth getting up early for!

  15. Pam you are always, always inspirational but a big but is not negative. On the contrary for a lot of men a female big but is very much a plus

  16. I heard birds outside this morning at 3:30am. Surprised me, but I must be changing, because I didn’t get upset, just listened and fell back asleep.

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