I have chosen to come live in Johannesburg, described as the crime capitol of the world, for a period of 3 months or more.  I have now been here just over a month and this morning I became part of the crime statistics. 

Sitting in the front garden over breakfast and reading the daily lesson of The Course in Miracles, Louise Broomberg and I were relieved of her cell phone and my wallet and pocket knife by three young men who simply walked through the front gate, which we had inadvisedly left open, calmly walked over to us and quietly asked us to come with them into the house.  I won’t rehearse the details of the encounter here other than to say that we weren’t hurt and lost nothing but the items mentioned above.  My aim here is simply to explore the options of creation.

It has been said that we create our own world.  Does that mean that I created those three men and invited them to steal from me?  I don’t believe that is the point of that statement.  The fact is that the robbery took place.  The world that I create has to do with how I see that fact and what I choose to express internally and externally with regard to it.  Course in Miracles teaches that I am not the victim of the world that I see and that there is another way of looking at the world.

Nothing happened today that caused me to lose my sense of peace or my knowing that I live in a world of beauty and love.  I don’t deny the fact of what happened today, nor that there are ugly things that happen in the world every day.  But the world that I live in is the world that I express.  I don’t wish to live in an ugly, hateful world so I continue to express love and compassion into my ENTIRE world, which includes these three men.  What would I create if I choose to express anger, hate, and vengeance towards these men or self-pity about my loss of money and the inconvenience of cancelling/replacing credit cards etc?  Conversely, what am I creating by choosing to handle this circumstance in a peaceful, loving way in my interactions with Louise, the police, my banks, and all of those friends and relatives who inquire about the incident?  Does it serve me, or my world, to spit out hurt and indignation each time I relate the incident?  Other than to those people directly involved, does it serve me to even speak of the incident, unless, like in this article, there is a creative point to be made?  I can choose to let it flow into my past as just another event that happened during this 24 hour period.  I choose to move into my next moment creating joy, peace, and harmony that is alive right NOW, even while filling out police reports and cancelling my credit cards.

So, it is true that I became part of Johannesburg’s crime statistics this morning, but I did not become a victim.  That is not the world that I choose to create.