comment 0


ACIM CHAPTER 28 VI The Secret Vows

1. Who punishes the body is insane. For here the little gap is seen and yet it is not here. It has not judged itself, nor made itself to be what it is not. It does not seek to make of pain a joy and look for lasting pleasure in the dust. It does not tell you what its purpose is and cannot understand what it is for. It does not victimize, because it has no will, no preferences and no doubts. It does not wonder what it is. And so it has no need to be competitive. It can be victimized but cannot feel itself as victim. It accepts no role, but does what it is told, without attack.

2. It is indeed a senseless point of view to hold responsible for sight a thing that cannot see and blame it for the sounds you do not like, although it cannot hear. It suffers not punishment you give because it has no feeling. It behaves in ways you want, but never makes the choice. It is not born and does not die. It can but follow aimlessly the path on which it has been set. And if that path is changed, it walks as easily another way. It takes no sides and judges not the road it travels. It perceives no gap because it does not hate. It can be used for hate, but it cannot be hateful made thereby.

3. The thing you hate and fear and loathe and want, the body does not know. You send it forth to seek for separation and be separate. And then you hate it, not for what it is, but for the uses you have made of it. You shrink from what it sees and what it hears and hate its frailty and littleness. And you despise its acts, but not your own. It sees and acts for you. It hears your voice. And it is frail and little by your wish. It seems to punish you, and thus deserve your hatred for the limitations that it brings to you. Yet you have made of it a symbol for the limitations that you want your mind to have and see and keep.

4. The body represents the gap between the little bit of mind you call your own and all the rest of what is really yours. You hate it, yet you think it is your self, and that, without it, would your self be lost. This is the secret vow that you have made with every brother who would walk apart. This is the secret oath you take again, whenever you perceive yourself attacked. No one can suffer if he does not see himself attacked and losing by attack. Unstated and unheard in consciousness is every pledge to sickness. Yet it is a promise to another to be hurt by him, and to attack him in return.

5. Sickness is anger taken out upon the body, so that it will suffer pain. It is the obvious effect of what was made in secret, in agreement with another’s secret wish to be apart from you, as you would be apart from him. Unless you both agree that is your wish, it can have no effects. Whoever says, “There is no gap between my mind and yours” has kept God’s promise, not his tiny oath to be forever faithful unto death. And by his healing is his brother healed.

6. Let this be your agreement with each one, that you be one with him and not apart. And he will keep the promise that you make with him, because it is the one that he has made to God, as God has made to him. God keeps His promises; His Son keeps his. In his creation did his Father say, “You are beloved of Me and I of you forever. Be you perfect as Myself, for you can never be apart from Me.” His Son remembers not that he replied, “I will,” though in that promise he was born. Yet God reminds him of it every time he does not share a promise to be sick, but lets his mind be healed and unified. His secret vows are powerless before the Will of God, Whose promises he shares. And what he substitutes is not his will, who has made promise to himself to God. [1]

We make a secret vow with all our brothers who would walk apart. We renew our oaths every time we see them as against us and not for us.  I cannot suffer as long as I fail to see you as my victimizer; I cannot suffer as long as I lose nothing by an attack against me.  But I pledge my body to sickness every time you fail me, every word you say against me, every time you take what is mine and leave me with nothing. When I give you the power to take away my sunshine and my life, I pledge myself to the insanity that keeps the illusion going.  It is a promise I make to you – you will always hurt me, disappoint me, do something that will let me down and make me frown.  And it gives me the right to attack you and maintain the sick cycles of the world.  This is our secret promise to each other – you make me sick and therefore I will make you sick.  If you make me so sick that I cannot stand it anymore, I will exchange you for someone else and replay the same secret vow with the one in which I substitute for you.  You can rest assured that what happened between you and me is going to happen between the next brother and me.  It is an unconscious desire to blame someone else and let them disempower us so that we have every right to pour out our anger and spite upon them, to whine and complain, to have an excuse for why we never go after the gold, why we never reach for the High Mind, why we content ourselves with nothingness when we are really all there is. 

We are insane to take out revenge upon a body.  The body is not capable of anything on its own.  It knows nothing. It functions solely upon the thoughts and will of what inhabits it.  It is unable to give any meaning to anything that happens in the spaces between the broken parts of God.  The body is not what suffers punishment because it has no feeling on its own.  It is not the “chooser.” It makes no decisions.  Jesus tells us that it is not born and does not die.  It just follows aimlessly on the path to which it has been set.  Change the path, and it follows along the changed path just as easily as it did the last one.  The body does not side with evil and it does not determine the path we choose.  It does not love or hate, though it can be used for hate and made by hate. 

In other words there is no reason at all to hate our bodies. The body is what we chose to substitute for the spiritual essence which is our Being.  While the body represents our independence, our separation from the whole, the space that we put between ourselves and God, it is not evil on its own. According to A Course in Miracles, the body is what we made, not what God made. 

The body is nothing without us. We may end up hating the body for its frailty, for its lack of knowledge, for its inability to make us happy, but whom we really hate is ourselves.  The body is a physical representation of the gap between the low mind of ego and the higher mind, the Mind of Christ, our true and holy Spirit/Self.  Those of us who end up in the realm of the low mind chose to leave the Big Picture and take a little picture of our own, each of us the mini-me of our own fictional kingdom, the center of our tiny, limited universe, the keeper of our grandiose ideas about ourselves.  And when this fails, when our grandiose plan is met with the resistance and opposition by those who simply do not see how special we are, we get angry.  Our anger can take the form of self-pity. It can take the form of grumpiness. It can take the form of violence and cruelty.  But whatever form it takes, it is searching for someone or something to blame.

No matter where we direct our anger, it always comes back to us. We will suffer physical pain.  Our bodies cannot but fail us, for they mirror our sense of separation, sin, and shame.  Disease is the effect of the secret vow we make in this realm to hold ourselves apart from each other, of blaming, shaming, and punishing others for what we chose for ourselves. 

However, it only takes one of us to decide to step out of our vow to be apart, to be sick, to choose enmity and despair.  Whichever one of us commits themselves to healing, who says, “There is no gap between us,” is healed and thereby heals the other. 

This applies to every atrocity there is. This principle applies to all manner of rudeness and ill will. There is no powwow in the world that can stand against it and stop healing from taking place when one Son of God, Brother of Christ, claims oneness by denying the separation, by giving no support to specialness, by offering only the Reality of Creation in place of the perceptual world. 

Jesus calls to us to let this be the agreement we have with each other – that we are one with each other and not apart.  When I keep this promise with you, it is the promise I made with God and God has made with me.  Just as God keeps His promises; so must I keep mine!  When God created us, He said, “You are my Beloved and I am your Beloved.  You are perfect as I am perfect, and you can never be apart from Me.”  And we said, “We will,” and in that promise we were created.  There was no breaking the promise because it was a promise of God. 

We are reminded of this promise every time we do not keep our secret oath of separateness, sickness, and attack.  The peace of God is restored to our awareness when we deny the gap between us, when we put down our weapons, when we step up to our rightful place in His Kingdom.  Reach for the High Mind today and remember the beautiful perfect Love of which we are a part.  Those ignorant vows we took to flesh and blood, to shame and blame, to separation and specialness, to sin and punishment have absolutely no power before the Will of God.  The promise God made to us and the promise we made to God cancels out every vain oath and stupid agreement that would obscure our beauty, purity, and goodness in Him. 

[1]A Course in Miracles. Chapter 28 The undoing of fear vi the secret vows. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM CHAPTER 28 THE UNDOING OF FEAR V. The Alternate to Dreams of Fear

ACIM CHAPTER 28. V. The Alternate to Dreams of Fear

1. What is a sense of sickness but a sense of limitation? Of a splitting off and separating from? A gap that is perceived between you and your brother, and what is now seen as health? And so the good is seen to be outside, the evil, in. God is the Alternate to dreams of fear. Who shares in them can never share in Him. But who withdraws his mind from sharing them is sharing Him. There is no other choice. Except you share it, nothing can exist. And you exist because God shared His Will with you, that His creation might create.

2. It is the sharing of the evil dreams of hate and malice, bitterness and death, of sin and suffering and pain and loss, that makes them real. Unshared, they are perceived as meaningless. The fear is gone from them because you did not give them your support. Where fear has gone there love must come, because there are but these alternatives. Where one appears, the other disappears. And which you share becomes the only one you have. You have the one that you accept, because it is the only one you wish to have.

3. You share no evil dreams if you forgive the dreamer and perceive that he is not the dream he made. And so he cannot be a part of yours, from which you both are free. Forgiveness separates the dreamer from the evil dream, and thus releases him. Remember if you share an evil dream, you will believe you are the dream you share. And fearing it, you will not want to know your own Identity, because you think that It is fearful. And you will deny your Self and walk upon an alien ground which your Creator did not make, and where you seem to be a something you are not. You will make war upon your Self, Which seems to be your enemy and will attack your brother, as a part of what you hate. There is no compromise. You are your Self or an illusion. What can be between illusion and the truth? A middle ground, where you can be a thing that is not you, must be a dream, and cannot be the truth.

4. You have conceived a little gap between illusions and the truth to be the place where all your safety lies, and where your Self is safely hidden by what you have made. Here is a world established that is sick, and this the world the body’s eyes perceive. Here are the sounds it hears; the voices that its ears were made to hear. Yet sights and sounds the body can perceive are meaningless. It cannot see nor hear. It does not know what seeing is, what listening is for. It is as little able to perceive as it can judge or understand or know. Its eyes are blind; its ears are deaf. It can not think and so it cannot have effects.

5. What is there God created to be sick? And what that He created not can be? Let not your eyes behold a dream; your ears bear witness to illusion. They were made to look upon a world that is not there; to hear the voices that can make no sound. Yet are there other sounds and other sights that can be seen and heard and understood. For eyes and ears are senses without sense, and what they see and hear they but report. It is not they that hear and see, but you, who put together every jagged piece, each senseless scrap and shred of evidence, and make a witness to the world you want. Let not the body’s ears and eyes perceive these countless fragments seen within the gap that you imagined and let them persuade their maker his imaginings are real.

6. Creation proves reality because it shares the function all creation shares. It is not made of little bits of glass, a piece of wood, a thread or two, perhaps, all put together to attest its truth. Reality does not depend on this. There is no gap that separates the truth from dreams and from illusions. Truth has left no room for them in any place or time. For it fills every place and every time and makes them wholly indivisible.

7. You who believe there is a little gap between you and your brother do not see that it is here you are as prisoners in a world perceived to be existing here. The world you see does not exist, because the place where you perceive it is not real. The gap is carefully concealed in fog and misty pictures rise to cover it with vague uncertain forms and changing shapes, forever unsubstantial and unsure. Yet in the gap is nothing. And there are no awesome secrets and no darkened tombs where terror rises from the bones of death. Look at the little gap and you behold the innocence and emptiness of sin that you will see within yourself when you have lost the fear of recognizing love. [1]

There is only sickness and insanity, sin and shame in the sense of separation that has splintered our perception of Creation.  While we may consider it healthy to have spaces between us, to separate our bodies from each other, to erect boundaries to keep us safe from each other, we fail to recognize that the spaces and outlines between us are not reality.  Creation is complete and whole and forever joined.  When we mistake the brokenness and the fear and suspicions that come between us for reality, we share an unwholesome realm that turns us into something we are not.

God did not create us to be predators upon Creation.  God did not create us to be full of fear, to live behind locked doors, to carry weapons formed to maim and kill other parts of Creation.  God did not create a world that has its teeth set us against us.  God did not create a world where we must sweat and labor and sacrifice for every morsel of our subsistence.  Share this realm, stay involved in its drama and trauma, cherish its mysteries and murders, become addicted to its hate and malice, bitterness and death, and we make the evil dreams real.   

But stop sharing in it, step out of the dreams, refuse to become involved, keep your mind focused upon the reality of God’s love and the dreams of this world can torment us no longer.  We are free of them because love comes to us when we stop supporting and sharing the dreams of fear, of blame, of sin and shame.  There is one Alternate to dreams of fear and it is God the Father and Creator of all that is and ever will be.  This is our Father, and our Father is Love.  Deny all that would oppose Love and Love is all that remains.  Deny all that would oppose Truth and Truth remains.  There is no other alternative.  I am my Self only when I refuse to be a poor substitute for what I really am.  What stands between the illusion of me and the truth about me? What stands between the truth about you and the illusion of you?  A middle ground, a gap, a space, a separation, a divide.  And in that gap between us, we make up stories about each other.  You will blame me, and I will blame you for whatever comes between us.  I will see things my way and you will see things your way for we have broken up into pieces.  In that gap we cannot ever see Reality for we are looking with our flesh eyes and our flesh ears designed to see and hear things that keep us broken.  We are looking from eyes designed to exist in a world of limitations, a world of hierarchies, a world devised on a belief in opposition and opposites. 

In paragraph six, Jesus teaches that Creation proves reality – it is not made of little bits and pieces of this and that.  Reality does not depend on anything you can “prove.” Reality is – it has not divisions that separate it from unreality.  There is no room in reality for doubts and uncertainties, for questions and arguments.  Reality fills every place and every time and is whole and indivisible. 

Today in your personal devotions, invite Holy Spirit to help you understand the Alternate to dreams of fear.  There is nothing in the gap between you and me.  There is nothing in the gap between us and God.  Look carefully and prayerfully at the empty spaces perceived by your flesh eyes that stand between you and all of Creation and see that it simply cannot be.  There is only innocence.  Sin has no meaning. All that would seem to take place in those empty spaces is as nothing when we lose our fear of recognizing the Love of our Father that created us as one. 

[1]A Course in Miracles. Chapter 28 The undoing of fear v the alternate to dreams of fear. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM CHAPTER 28.IV The Greater Joining

1. Accepting the Atonement for yourself means not to give support to someone’s dream of sickness and of death. It means that you share not his wish to separate and let him turn illusions on himself. Nor do you wish that they be turned, instead, on you. Thus have they no effects. And you are free of dreams of pain because you let him be. Unless you help him, you will suffer pain with him because that is your wish. And you become a figure in his dream of pain, as he in yours. So do you and your brother both become illusions, and without identity. You could be anyone or anything, depending on whose evil dream you share. You can be sure of just one thing; that you are evil, for you share in dreams of fear.

2. There is a way of finding certainty right here and now. Refuse to be a part of fearful dreams whatever form they take, for you will lose identity in them. You find yourself by not accepting them as causing you and giving you effects. You stand apart from them, but not apart from him who dreams them. Thus you separate the dreamer from the dream, and join in one, but let the other go. The dream is but illusion in the mind. And with the mind you would unite, but never with the dream. It is the dream you fear, and not the mind. You see them as the same because you think that you are but a dream. And what is real and what is but illusion in yourself you do not know and cannot tell apart.

3. Like you, your brother thinks he is a dream. Share not in his illusion of himself, for your identity depends on his reality. Think, rather, of him as a mind in which illusions still persist, but as a mind which brother is to you. He is not brother made by what he dreams, nor is his body, “hero” of the dream, your brother. It is his reality that is your brother, as is yours to him. Your mind and his are joined in brotherhood. His body and his dreams but seem to make a little gap, where yours have joined with his.

4. And yet, between your minds there is no gap. To join his dreams is thus to meet him not, because his dreams would separate from you. Therefore release him, merely by your claim on brotherhood, and not on dreams of fear. Let him acknowledge who he is, by not supporting his illusions by your faith, for if you do, you will have faith in yours. With faith in yours, he will not be released, and you are kept in bondage to his dreams. And dreams of fear will haunt the little gap, inhabited but by illusions which you have supported in your brother’s mind.

5. Be certain, if you do your part, he will do his, for he will join you where you stand. Call not to him to meet you in the gap between you or you must believe that it is your reality as well as his. You cannot do his part, but this you do when you become a passive figure in his dreams, instead of dreamer of your own. Identity in dreams is meaningless because the dreamer and the dream are one. Who shares a dream must be the dream he shares, because by sharing is a cause produced.

6. You share confusion, and you are confused, for in the gap no stable self exists. What is the same seems different because what is the same appears to be unlike. His dreams are yours because you let them be. But if you took your own away would he be free of them, and of his own as well. Your dreams are witnesses to his, and his attest the truth of yours. Yet if you see there is no truth in yours, his dreams will go, and he will understand what made the dream.

7. The Holy Spirit is in both minds, and He is One because there is no gap that separates His Oneness from Itself. The gap between your bodies matters not, for what is joined in Him is always one. No one is sick if someone else accepts his union with him. His desire to be a sick and separated mind can not remain without a witness or a cause. And both are gone if someone wills to be united with him. He has dreams that he was separated from his brother who, by sharing not his dream, has left the space between them vacant. And the Father comes to join His Son the Holy Spirit joined.

8. The Holy Spirit’s function is to take the broken picture of the Son of God and put the pieces into place again. This holy picture, healed entirely, does He hold out to every separate piece that thinks it is a picture in itself. To each He offers his Identity, Which the whole picture represents, instead of just a little, broken bit that he insisted was himself. And when he sees this picture he will recognize himself. If you share not your brother’s evil dream, this is the picture that the miracle will place within the little gap, left clean of all the seeds of sickness and of sin. And here the Father will receive His Son because His Son was gracious to himself.

9. I thank You, Father, knowing You will come to close each little gap that lies between the broken pieces of Your holy Son. Your holiness, complete and perfect, lies in every one of them. And they are joined because what is in one is in them all. How holy is the smallest grain of sand, when it is recognized as being part of the completed picture of God’s Son! The forms the broken pieces seem to take mean nothing. For the whole is in each one. And every aspect of the Son of God is just the same as every other part.

10. Join not your brother’s dreams but join with him, and where you join His Son the Father is. Who seeks for substitutes when he perceives he has lost nothing? Who would want to have the “benefits” of sickness when he has received the simple happiness of health? What God has given cannot be a loss, and what is not of Him has no effects. What, then, would you perceive within the gap? The seeds of sickness come from the belief that there is joy in separation, and its giving up would be a sacrifice. But miracles are the result when you do not insist on seeing in the gap what is not there. Your willingness to let illusions go is all the Healer of God’s Son requires. He will place the miracle of healing where the seeds of sickness were. And there will be no loss, but only gain. [1]

As long as we react to one another in fear, judgment, and suspicion we are choosing to fill the gap between our perceptions of each other with the nothingness that ensnares us in the perceptual world.  When we live in the flesh world, it would seem that we must be keenly aware of our surroundings.  We must determine who is dangerous and who is safe, who can be trusted with our confidences and who cannot be trusted with the tiniest shred!  I will base all my perception of you on the past – were you someone who lifted my spirits and supported my dreams or were you someone who sucked up my time and energy with your constant complaints and grievances and plotted against me, secretly desiring to see me fail?  Will I react to all that I have held against you, or will I forgive the things that went wrong between us and welcome the miracle to clear the illusions of our alienation? 

The seeds of sickness come from the belief that there is joy in separation.  There is no sacrifice in giving up the fractures, friction, and fiction that come between us, for a miracle takes place when we choose to give up the dreams we made up about each other.  We let illusions go.  We take a stand for the reality of the oneness of God’s Son.  When I no longer react to you based upon the perceptions I made to fill the gap between us, the miracle of healing takes the place of the anger and hostility, the disease and dread that seemed to fill that space before.  A miracle of healing is a gain in love, peace, and joy – not only for me and for you in this instant, but for the Kingdom of God forever. 

Jesus tells us very explicitly to stop sharing the evil dream with others.  Do not take part in gossip and slander, in blame and shame.  Do not preach sin and sacrifice, doom and gloom.  Do not blame the problems of the world on any part of God’s Creation for the whole of Creation is in each part and every aspect of the Body of Christ is just as the same as every other part.  Do not partake in the bad dreams of others but join with their reality in Christ, for when we join with our brothers. we join with God.  We are not set apart from others; we are one with them.

In paragraph nine we have a lovely prayer which we can paraphrase with words and phrases that best match our own personal devotional practice. Today pray this prayer of gratitude and ask the Father for a deepened understanding of the greater joining which heals all of our brokenness and restores us to the completion of God’s Son! 

[1]A Course in Miracles. Chapter 28 The undoing of fear iv the greater joining. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM CHAPTER 28. III The Agreement to Join

1. What waits in perfect certainty beyond salvation is not our concern. For you have barely started to allow your first, uncertain steps to be directed up the ladder separation led you down. The miracle alone is your concern at present. Here is where we must begin. And having started, will the way be made serene and simple in the rising up to waking and the ending of the dream. When you accept a miracle, you do not add your dream of fear to one that is already being dreamed. Without support, the dream will fade away without effects. For it is your support that strengthens it.

2. No mind is sick until another mind agrees that they are separate. And thus it is their joint decision to be sick. If you withhold agreement and accept the part you play in making sickness real, the other mind cannot project its guilt without your aid in letting it perceive itself as separate and apart from you. Thus is the body not perceived as sick by both your minds from separate points of view. Uniting with your brother’s mind prevents the cause of sickness and perceived effects. Healing is the effect of minds that join, as sickness comes from minds that separate.

3. The miracle does nothing just because the minds are joined and cannot separate. Yet in the dreaming has this been reversed and separate minds are seen as bodies, which are separated, and which cannot join. Do not allow your brother to be sick, for if he is, have you abandoned him to his own dream by sharing it with him. He has not seen the cause of sickness where it is, and you have overlooked the gap between you, where the sickness has been bred. Thus are you joined in sickness, to preserve the little gap unhealed, where sickness is kept carefully protected, cherished, and upheld by firm belief, lest God should come to bridge the little gap that leads to Him. Fight not His coming with illusions, for it is His coming that you want above all things that seem to glisten in the dream.

4. The end of dreaming is the end of fear, and love was never in the world of dreams. The gap is little. Yet it holds the seeds of pestilence and every form of ill because it is a wish to keep apart and not to join. And thus it seems to give a cause to sickness which is not its cause. The purpose of the gap is all the cause that sickness has. For it was made to keep you separated, in a body which you see as if it were the cause of pain.

5. The cause of pain is separation, not the body, which is only its effect. Yet separation is but empty space, enclosing nothing, doing nothing, and as unsubstantial as the empty place between the ripples that a ship has made in passing by. And covered just as fast, as water rushes in to close the gap, and as the waves in joining cover it. Where is the gap between the waves when they have joined and covered up the space which seemed to keep them separate for a little while? Where are the grounds for sickness when the minds have joined to close the little gap between them, where the seeds of sickness seemed to grow?

6. God builds the bridge, but only in the space left clean and vacant by the miracle. The seeds of sickness and the shame of guilt He cannot bridge, for He can not destroy the alien will that He created not. Let its effects be gone and clutch them not with eager hands to keep them for yourself. The miracle will brush them all aside and thus make room for Him Who wills to come and bridge His Son’s returning to Himself.

7. Count, then, the silver miracles and golden dreams of happiness as all the treasures you would keep within the storehouse of the world. The door is open, not to thieves, but to your starving brothers, who mistook for gold the shining of a pebble and who stored a heap of snow that shone like silver. They have nothing left behind the open door. What is the world except a little gap perceived to tear eternity apart, and break it into days and months, and years? And what are you who live within the world except a picture of the Son of God in broken pieces, each concealed within a separate and uncertain bit of clay?

8. Be not afraid, my child, but let your world be gently lit by miracles. And where the little gap was seen to stand between you and your brother, join him there. And so sickness will now be seen without a cause. The dream of healing in forgiveness lies, and gently shows you that you never sinned. The miracle would leave no proof of guilt to bring you witness to what never was. And in your storehouse it will make a place of welcome for your Father and your Self. The door is open, that all those may come who would no longer starve, and would enjoy the feast of plenty set before them there. And they will meet with your invited Guests the miracle has asked to come to you.

9. This is a feast unlike indeed to those the dreaming of the world has shown. For here, the more that anyone receives, the more is left for all the rest to share. The Guests have brought unlimited supply with Them. And no one is deprived or can deprive. Here is a feast the Father lays before His Son and shares it equally with him. And in Their sharing there can be no gap in which abundance falters and grows thin. Here can the lean years enter not, for time waits not upon this feast, which has no end. For Love has set its table in the space that seemed to keep your Guests apart from you. [1]

All the dreams that happened in the gaps between us fade away when we agree to join.  This is the miracle that ends all fear.  We do not bring our dreams of fear to our Father.  We do not come to tattle about all the things we dreamed up that our brothers did to us in the space and time that made them out to be our enemies.  We come in happy acceptance of the brotherhood.  We come as Christ Who is the Son – as one, healed of all that would set us against each other, healed of all that would separate me from you and you from me. 

Sickness is bred in minds that agree to be at war with one another.  Take your mind out of all agreements that would set you against the Son and there is nobody and nothing that can project its guilt upon you.  When I unite my mind with yours and accept my part in making you my enemy, I prevent the madness from taking place.  For joining with your mind, recognizing you as part of me and not apart from me prevents both the cause of sickness and all its perceived effects. 

We are spending too much time studying this course to overlook the beautiful lesson in healing that is provided here.  Today ask Holy Spirit to illuminate this passage to your mind and instill within it the devotion to healing that has been assigned to us.  Sickness is the effect of separate minds; healing is the effect of minds that are joined. 

Miracles actually do nothing for minds are already joined and it is impossible for my mind to be separate from you.  We are one Body in Christ and as God’s Son.  Yet in the perceptual world of ego and separation – you seem to have your own body, separate and different from mine, with ideas and behaviors that are alien to me and thus I cannot perceive the two of us being eternally linked and yet holding opposing viewpoints and going in opposite directions.  There are things about your body that will always frighten me. You may be bigger than me and thus I am afraid you will step on me and crush me, eat all my food, or infringe upon my space.  Or you may be so small I am afraid of your vulnerability and weakness, afraid you may shatter or expecting me to walk about on my tippy toes to protect your fragility and sensitivity.  Your skin may be the color of those who would blame me for all their earthly sorrows or conversely your skin may be the color of those who have oppressed me and held me back from all my potential and denied me access to the world’s advancement and acclaim.  The private parts of your body may offend me by their very nature and all the things that have been said and done by people with the same private parts with which you were born!  Or perhaps your private parts will drive me wicked with desire for what you have and hold dear, and I have not.  And I will spend my life chasing after what you have, and I have not! 

In this state we cannot be joined.  But in this state we can agree to be joined.  We can see past the body and all the craziness that seems to pop up in the spaces between our bodies.  The miracle is the simple recognition that the emptiness that fills the empty spaces between us cannot be real for they have no value. The miracle does nothing but sweeps away the nothingness so that the truth of our joining is made apparent.  There is no need for signs and wonders.  There is no need for holy water, holy hands, or holy lands.  There are no such things as special prayers or blessings for all that is done in love is done in God and in Love there is no partiality, no specialness, no favorites, no hierarchies.  It is God and His Son as one.   

The end of dreaming is the end of separation, it starts with the agreement to join, it starts by recognizing the sad substitute for love that the world of dreams would offer us to stay in the gap of nothingness, to not accept our reality as Christ, the resurrected Son, but to stay on the cross in a bleeding, dying, humiliated body that seems to be the cause of all our pain.

The separation is the cause of all our pain, the body the effect of separation.  Just as eternity cannot be broken up in days and nights, minutes and hours, weeks, months, and years, neither can the Son of God be broken into pieces contained in separate shards of clay.  We do not hold the body accountable for sin for it is only an effect of separation. Forgive the body and it will serve us well through time; hold it accountable and it will not. 

A miracle is nothing to be afraid of – a miracle is gentle; its light is truth, and its outcome is sure.  A miracle closes the gap between you and me for we meet there where we can see no cause for the insanity that would sour us, sicken our minds and bodies, and come between the Father and the Son.  Do not harden your mind toward mercy and grace for mercy and grace are the healing agents of the world which stand for agreement to join. 

Make of your empty storehouse a festival of God’s Love.  Let it be a feast where God’s mercy and grace are extended to all the broken bits and pieces that stand in place of the Son.  Here there is nobody who goes hungry, who is lonely or afraid for this is a festival in honor of the Father, the honored Guest, Who shares in His unlimited abundance.  Nobody who joins can deprive or be deprived; here all that is belongs to all that is and ever was and ever will be. Welcome the feast of Love to fill the gap between ourselves and our misconceptions of God’s Love. 

[1]A Course in Miracles. Chapter 28 The undoing of fear iii. the agreement to join. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM CHAPTER 28 THE UNDOING OF FEAR II. Reversing Effects and Cause

ACIM Chapter 28. II Reversing Effects and Cause

1. Without a cause there can be no effects, and yet without effects there is no cause. The cause a cause is made by its effects, the Father is a Father by His Son. Effects do not create their cause, but they establish its causation. Thus, the Son gives Fatherhood to his Creator, and receives the gift that he has given Him.  It is because he is God’s Son that he must also be a father, who creates as God created him. The circle of creation has no end. Its starting and ending are the same. But in itself it holds the universe of all creation, without beginning and without an end.

2. Fatherhood is creation. Love must be extended. Purity is not confined. It is the nature of the innocent to be forever uncontained, without a barrier or limitation. Thus is purity not of the body. Nor can it be found where limitation is. The body can be healed by its effects, which are as limitless as is itself. Yet must all healing come about because the mind is recognized as not within the body, and its innocence is quite apart from it, and where all healing is. Where, then, is healing? Only where its cause is given its effects. For sickness is a meaningless attempt to give effects to causelessness, and make it be a cause.

3. Always in sickness does the Son of God attempt to make himself a cause, and not allow himself to be his Father’s Son. For this impossible desire, he does not believe that he is Love’s effect, and must be cause because of what he is. The cause of healing is the only Cause of everything. It has but one effect. And in that recognition, causelessness is given no effects and none is seen. A mind within a body and a world of other bodies, each with separate minds, are your “creations,” you the “other” mind, creating with effects unlike yourself. And as their “father,” you must be like them.

4. Nothing at all has happened but that you have put yourself to sleep and dreamed a dream in which you were an alien to yourself, and but a part of someone else’s dream. The miracle does not awaken you, but merely shows you who the dreamer is. It teaches you there is a choice of dreams while you are still asleep, depending on the purpose of your dreaming. Do you wish for dreams of healing, or for dreams of death? A dream is like a memory in that it pictures what you wanted shown to you.

5. An empty storehouse, with an open door, holds all your shreds of memories and dreams. Yet if you are the dreamer, you perceive this much at least: That you have caused the dream and can accept another dream as well. But for this change in content of the dream, it must be realized that it is you who dreamed the dreaming that you do not like. It is but an effect that you have caused, and you would not be cause of this effect. In dreams of murder and attack are you the victim in a dying body slain. But in forgiving dreams is no one asked to be the victim and the sufferer.  These are the happy dreams the miracle exchanges for your own. It does not ask you make another; only that you see you made the one you would exchange for this.

6. This world is causeless, as is every dream that anyone has dreamed within the world. No plans are possible, and no design exists that could be found and understood. What else could be expected from a thing that has no cause? Yet if it has no cause, it has no purpose. You may cause a dream, but never will you give it real effects. For that would change its cause, and it is this you cannot do. The dreamer of a dream is not awake but does not know he sleeps. He sees illusions of himself as sick or well, depressed or happy, but without a stable cause with guaranteed effects.

7. The miracle establishes you dream a dream, and that its content is not true. This is a crucial step in dealing with illusions. No one is afraid of them when he perceives he made them up. The fear was held in place because he did not see that he was author of the dream and not a figure in the dream. He gives himself the consequences that he dreams he gave his brother. And it is but this the dream has put together and has offered him, to show him that his wishes have been done. Thus does he fear his own attack but sees it at another’s hands. As victim, he is suffering from its effects, but not their cause. He authored not his own attack, and he is innocent of what he caused. The miracle does nothing but to show him that he has done nothing. What he fears is cause without the consequences that would make it cause. And so it never was.

8. The separation started with the dream the Father was deprived of His Effects, and powerless to keep them since He was no longer their Creator. In the dream, the dreamer made himself. But what he made has turned against him, taking on the role of its creator, as the dreamer had. And as he hated his Creator, so the figures in the dream have hated him. His body is their slave, which they abuse because the motives he has given it have they adopted as their own. And hate it for the vengeance it would offer them. It is their vengeance on the body which appears to prove the dreamer could not be the maker of the dream. Effect and cause are first split off, and then reversed, so that effect becomes a cause, the cause, effect.

9. This is the separation’s final step, with which salvation, which proceeds to go the other way, begins. This final step is an effect of what has gone before, appearing as a cause. The miracle is the first step in giving back to cause the function of causation, not effect. For his confusion has produced the dream, and while it lasts will wakening be feared. Nor will the call to wakening be heard because it seems to be the call to fear.

10. Like every lesson that the Holy Spirit requests you learn, the miracle is clear. It demonstrates what He would have you learn and shows you its effects are what you want. In His forgiving dreams are the effects of yours undone, and hated enemies perceived as friends with merciful intent. Their enmity is seen as causeless now because they did not make it. And you can accept the role of maker of their hate because you see that it has no effects. Now are you freed from this much of the dream; the world is neutral and the bodies that still seem to move about as separate things need not be feared. And so they are not sick.

11. The miracle returns the cause of fear to you who made it. But it also shows that, having no effects, it is not cause, because the function of causation is to have effects. And where effects are gone there is no cause. Thus is the body healed by miracles because they show the mind made sickness, and employed the body to be victim, or effect, of what it made. Yet half the lesson will not teach the whole. The miracle is useless if you learn but that the body can be healed, for this is not the lesson it was sent to teach. The lesson is the mind was sick that thought the body could be sick, projecting out its guilt caused nothing, and had no effects.

12. This world is full of miracles. They stand in shining silence next to every dream of pain and suffering, of sin and guilt. They are the dream’s alternative, the choice to be the dreamer, rather than deny the active role in making up the dream. They are the glad effects of taking back the consequence of sickness to its cause. The body is released because the mind acknowledges “this was not done to me, but I am doing this.” And thus the mind is free to make another choice instead. Beginning here, salvation will proceed to change the course of every step in the descent to separation, until all the steps have been retraced, the ladder gone, and all the dreaming of the world undone. [1]

There can be no Father without His Son.  There can be no creation without a Creator.  Only in a dream can creation arise that has no lasting substance, no definite purpose, no communication or communion.  The mind which does not perceive the Father is an empty storehouse with an open door collecting useless shreds of memories and pipe dreams – the more it gathers the emptier it becomes for it is not certain and true.  In a mind in which the Son has seemed to lose His Father, the mind sickens and becomes addicted to the outside world where all stand apart and separate from him.  In such a realm decay, disease, and death are his certain doom which the son must face alone and afraid.   

The miracle that heals us informs us that we dream a dream. We are not at the mercy of the dream of our brothers’ but seem to suffer the consequences of what we dream for others, making ourselves the victim of another’s spite.  In the dream I dream and the dream you dream, we fail to see that what we have made is a reversal of cause and effect.  Cause and effect are no longer one but separated and therefore the meaning is lost.  Just as a father must have a son to give meaning to fatherhood, so must a cause have effect to be cause. 

The first step in the miracle is to come to this understanding – that God is not God without us, and we do not exist without Him for we are the Son and God the Father.  All perceptions of distance between us are part of a crazy notion that would reverse the universe of no beginning and no end, a perpetual, ever-expanding cause effect Reality. To devise such a reversal is to enter a dream of madness, a dream of war and strife, sorrow and sadness, a dream in which there is a Father without a Son and a Son which would be father to nothingness.  A dream in which Creation turns upon itself to devour what gives it life and fulfills its purpose. 

The miracle demonstrates what God would have us learn.  Our minds sickened by this dream sicken our bodies. Miracles are only necessary in a realm which forgot that the Father and His Son cannot be separate.  The miracle heals the mind, and the miracle mind heals the body for as long as it is necessary.  This world is full of miracles apparent to those who quietly accept the unity of Cause and Its Effects.  Miracles are the beautiful recognition that all pain and suffering, sin and guilt, disease and death are simply the result of what could be if it were possible for the Father to oppose His Son and the Son oppose the Father. 

The miracle informs us of the untrustworthiness of the dream that would reverse Cause and Its effects.  When you no longer see me as the culprit of the crimes against you, and I no longer see you as the one responsible for my pain and sorrow, we recognize we only bear the consequences of what we wished upon each other for cause and its effects are one.  If I see you as guilty, then the guilt is upon myself; when I see you as innocent; your innocence is mine as well.

Today ask Holy Spirit to enlighten your understanding so that you can see the role you have played in all that others have seemed to do to you.  When we stop partaking in the dream of opposition and opposites, separation and sin we close the gaping gap between us.  Holy Spirit gives us happy dreams of forgiveness and salvation, free of fear and suspicion, retracing all the steps that led to the hell we made in the spaces between ourselves and God. The Father and His Son is not a ghastly mystery that requires blood and blame, it is a simple understanding that Love must extend Itself and cannot be separated from Its effects. To accept this is to undo the hellish dream, and to awaken to our Father’s love.    

[1]A Course in Miracles. Chapter 28 The undoing of fear ii. reversing effect and cause. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992)

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:


[1]A Course in Miracles. Chapter 28 The undoing of fear ii. reversing effect and cause. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992)

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM Chapter 27. I The Present Memory

1. The miracle does nothing. All it does is undo. And thus it cancels out the interference to what has been done. It does not add, but merely takes away. And what it takes away is long since gone but kept in memory appears to have immediate effects. This world was over long ago. The thoughts that made it are no longer in the mind that thought of them and loved them for a little while. The miracle but shows the past is gone, and what has truly gone has no effects. Remembering a cause can but produce illusions of its presence, not effects.

2. All the effects of guilt are here no more. For guilt is over. In its passing went its consequences, left without a cause. Why would you cling to it in memory if you did not desire its effects? Remembering is as selective as perception, being its past tense. It is perception of the past as if it were occurring now, and still were there to see. Memory, like perception, is a skill made up by you to take the place of what God gave in your creation. And like all the things you made, it can be used to serve another purpose, and to be the means for something else. It can be used to heal and not to hurt, if you so wish it be.

3. Nothing employed for healing represents an effort to do anything at all. It is a recognition that you have no needs which mean that something must be done. It is an unselective memory, that is not used to interfere with truth. All things the Holy Spirit can employ for healing have been given Him, without the content and the purposes for which they have been made. They are but skills without an application. They await their use. They have no dedication and no aim.

4. The Holy Spirit can indeed make use of memory, for God Himself is there. Yet this is not a memory of past events, but only of a present state. You are so long accustomed to believe that memory holds only what is past, that it is hard for you to realize it is a skill that can remember now. The limitations on remembering the world imposes on it are as vast as those you let the world impose on you. There is no link of memory to the past. If you would have it there, then there it is. But only your desire made the link, and only you have held it to a part of time where guilt appears to linger still.

5. The Holy Spirit’s use of memory is quite apart from time. He does not seek to use it as a means to keep the past, but rather as a way to let it go. Memory holds the message it receives and does what it is given it to do. It does not write the message, nor appoint what it is for. Like to the body, it is purposeless within itself. And if it seems to serve to cherish ancient hate, and gives you pictures of injustices and hurts that you were saving, this is what you asked its message be that it is. Committed to its vaults, the history of all the body’s past is hidden there. All of the strange associations made to keep the past alive, the present dead, are stored within it, waiting your command that they be brought to you and lived again. And thus do their effects appear to be increased by time, which took away their cause.

6. Yet time is but another phase of what does nothing. It works hand in hand with all the other attributes with which you seek to keep concealed the truth about yourself. Time neither takes away nor can restore. And yet you make strange use of it, as if the past had caused the present, which is but a consequence in which no change can be made possible because its cause has gone. Yet change must have a cause that will endure, or else it will not last. No change can be made in the present if its cause is past. Only the past is held in memory as you make use of it, and so it is a way to hold the past against the now.

7. Remember nothing that you taught yourself, for you were badly taught. And who would keep a senseless lesson in his mind, when he can learn and can preserve a better one? When ancient memories of hate appear, remember that their cause is gone. And so you cannot understand what they are for. Let not the cause that you would give them now be what it was that made them what they were or seemed to be. Be glad that it is gone, for this is what you would be pardoned from. And see, instead, the new effects of cause accepted now, with consequences now. They will surprise you with their loveliness. The ancient new ideas they bring will be the happy consequences of a Cause so ancient that it far exceeds the span of memory which your perception sees.

8. This is the Cause the Holy Spirit has remembered for you when you would forget. It is not past because He let It not be unremembered. It has never changed because there never was a time in which He did not keep It safely in your mind. Its consequences will indeed seem new because you thought that you remembered not their Cause. Yet was It never absent from your mind, for it was not your Father’s Will that He be unremembered by His Son.

9. What you remember never was. It came from causelessness which you confused with cause. It can deserve but laughter when you learn you have remembered consequences that were causeless and could never be effects. The miracle reminds you of a Cause forever present, perfectly untouched by time and interference. Never changed from what It is. And you are Its effect, as changeless and as perfect as Itself. Its memory does not lie in the past, nor waits the future. It is not revealed in miracles. They but remind you that It has not gone. When you forgive It for your sins, It will no longer be denied.

10. You who have sought to lay a judgment on your own Creator cannot understand it is not He Who laid a judgment on His Son. You would deny Him His Effects, yet have They never been denied. There was no time in which His Son could be condemned for what was causeless and against His Will. What your remembering would witness to is but the fear of God. He has not done the thing you fear. No more have you. And so your innocence has not been lost. You need no healing to be healed. In quietness, see in the miracle a lesson in allowing Cause to have Its Own effects, and doing nothing that would interfere.

11. The miracle comes quietly into the mind that stops an instant and is still. It reaches gently from that quiet time and from the mind it healed in quiet then, to other minds to share its quietness. And they will join in doing nothing to prevent its radiant extension back into the Mind Which caused all minds to be. Born out of sharing, there can be no pause in time to cause the miracle delay in hastening to all unquiet minds, and bringing them an instant’s stillness, when the memory of God returns to them. Their own remembering is quiet now, and what has come to take its place will not be wholly unremembered afterwards.

12. He to Whom time is given offers thanks for every quiet instant given Him. For in that instant is God’s memory allowed to offer all its treasures to the Son of God, for whom they have been kept. How gladly does He offer them unto the one for whom He has been given them! And His Creator shares His thanks because He would not be deprived of His Effects. The instant’s silence that His Son accepts gives welcome to eternity and Him and lets Them enter where They would abide. For in that instant does the Son of God do nothing that would make himself afraid.

13. How instantly the memory of God arises in the mind that has no fear to keep the memory away! Its own remembering has gone. There is no past to keep its fearful image in the way of glad awakening to present peace. The trumpets of eternity resound throughout the stillness yet disturb it not. And what is now remembered is not fear but rather is the Cause that fear was made to render unremembered and undone. The stillness speaks in gentle sounds of love the Son of God remembers from before his own remembering came in between the present and the past, to shut them out.

14. Now is the Son of God at last aware of present Cause and Its benign effects. Now does he understand what he has made is causeless having no effects at all. He has done nothing. And in seeing this, he understands he never had a need for doing anything, and never did. His Cause is Its Effects. There never was a cause beside It that could generate a different past or future. It effects are changelessly eternal, beyond fear, and past the world of sin entirely.

15. What has been lost, to see the causeless not? And where is sacrifice when memory of God has come to take the place of loss? What better way to close the little gap between illusions and reality than to allow the memory of God to flow across it, making it a bridge an instant will suffice to reach beyond? For God has closed it with Himself. His memory has not gone by and left a stranded Son forever on a shore where he can glimpse another shore that he can never reach.  His Father wills that he is lifted up and gently carried over. He has built the bridge and it is He Who will transport His Son across it. Have no fear that He will fail in what He wills. Nor that you be excluded from the Will that is for you. [1]

In quietness today as we come to our devotional practice, we accept the certain Love of God. All else just fades away.  There is nothing to fight against, nothing to beg for, no commanding the powers that be to give us what we want, All that we are and All that we long for can be found in simple acceptance of God is the Cause and we are His Effects.  All that we have made to take the place of this beautiful truth cannot be.  It is not a sacrifice to give up sacrifice. It is not a loss to give up loss.  It is not fear to be awakened from a nightmare and be assured it was not real!

Spend time today with this text and let its meaning rest upon your mind. Do not hurry through it but linger with it in an attitude of the sense of freedom, joy, and laughter that it brings.  When we can calmly look upon the insanity of the world and know that it cannot be true, we know our time of madness is over.  There is no struggle, no ongoing striving and conniving to make sure we believe in the right doctrine and promote the right religion, no worry if we have been barking up the wrong tree, no concern at all with the failings and shortcomings of flesh.  Our Father has not forsaken us, and we have not forsaken our Father.  It could not happen.  And if we believe it did, then we have believed in illusions, we have made of ourselves a nightmare, we made a different story and forgot it was not true. 

Today remember the present memory which is established in every moment that we take away from the world and all its legends from the past and bring to Holiness.  Let the quiet instants spent with Holy Spirit today remind you of your true Identity in Him Who has never taken His Memory from our minds, has never taken His Devotion from our hearts, has always called for us to awaken to the Kingdom that could never and will never be divided.  Ask Holy Spirit to make this real to you in your daily application. Let its message deliver you from any fear that God would ever exclude you from your everlasting love, and peace, and joy.

[1]A Course in Miracles. Chapter 28 The undoing of fear i. the present memory. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992)

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM Chapter 27. VIII The “Hero” of the Dream

1. The body is the central figure in the dreaming of the world. There is no dream without it, nor does it exist without the dream in which it acts as if it were a person to be seen and be believed. It takes the central place in every dream, which tells the story of how it was made by other bodies, born into the world outside the body, lives a little while and dies, to be united in the dust with other bodies dying like itself. In the brief time allotted it to live, it seeks for other bodies as its friends and enemies. Its safety is its main concern, its comfort is its guiding role. It tries to look for pleasure and avoid the things that would be hurtful. Above all, it tries to teach itself its pains and joys are different and can be told apart.

2. The dreaming of the world takes many forms, because the body seeks in many ways to prove it is autonomous and real. It puts things on itself that it has bought with little metal discs or paper strips the world proclaims as valuable and real. It works to get them, doing senseless things, and tosses them away for senseless things that it does not need and does not even want. It hires other bodies, that it may protect it and collect more senseless things that it can call its own. It looks about for special bodies that can share its dream. Sometimes it dreams it is a conqueror of bodies weaker than itself. But in some phases of the dream, it is the slave of bodies that would hurt and torture it.

3. The body’s serial adventures, from the time of birth to dying are the theme of every dream the world has ever had. The “hero” of this dream will never change, nor will its purpose. Though the dream itself takes many forms and seems to show a great variety of places and events where in its “hero” finds itself, the dream has but one purpose, taught in many ways. This single lesson does it try to teach again, and still again, and yet once more; that it is cause and not effect. And you are its effect and cannot be its cause.

4. Thus are you not the dreamer, but the dream. And so you wander idly in and out of places and events that it contrives. That this is all the body does is true, for it is but a figure in a dream. But who reacts to figures in a dream unless he sees them as if they were real? The instant that he sees them as they are they have no more effects on him, because he understands he gave them their effects by causing them and making them seem real.

5. How willing are you to escape effects of all the dreams the world has ever had? Is it your wish to let no dream appear to be the cause of what it is you do? Then let us merely look upon the dream’s beginning, for the part you see is but the second part, whose cause lies in the first. No one asleep and dreaming in the world remembers his attack upon himself. No one believes there really was a time when he knew nothing of a body and could never have conceived this world as real. He would have seen at once that these ideas are one illusion, too ridiculous for anything but to be laughed away. How serious they now appear to be! And no one can remember when they would have met with laughter and with disbelief. We can remember this if we but look directly at their cause. And we will see the grounds for laughter, not a cause for fear.

6. Let us return the dream he gave away unto the dreamer, who perceives the dream as separate from himself and done to him. Into eternity, where all is one, there crept a tiny, mad idea, at which this Son of God remembered not to laugh. In his forgetting did the thought become a serious idea, and possible of both accomplishment and real effects. Together, we can laugh them both away, and understand that time cannot intrude upon eternity. It is a joke to think that time can come to circumvent eternity, which means there is no time.

7. A timelessness in which is time made real, a part of God that can attack itself, a separate brother as an enemy, a mind within a body all are forms of circularity whose ending starts at its beginning, ending at its cause. The world you see depicts exactly what you thought it you did. Except that now you think that what you did is being done to you. The guilt for what you thought is being placed outside yourself, and on a guilty world that dreams your dreams and thinks your thoughts instead of you. It brings its vengeance, not your own. It keeps you narrowly confined within a body, which it punishes because of all the simple things the body does within its dream. You have no power to make the body stop its evil deeds because you did not make it and cannot control its actions nor its purpose nor its fate.

8. The world but demonstrates an ancient truth; you will believe that others do to you exactly what you think you did to them. But once deluded into blaming them you will not see the cause of what they do, because you want the guilt to rest on them. How childish is the petulant device to keep your innocence by pushing guilt outside yourself, but never letting go! It is not easy to perceive the jest when all around you do your eyes behold its heavy consequences, but without their trifling cause. Without the cause do its effects seem serious and sad indeed. Yet they but follow. And it is their cause that follows nothing and is but a jest.

9. In gentle laughter does the Holy Spirit perceive the cause and looks not too effects. How else could He correct your error, who have overlooked the cause entirely? He bids you bring each terrible effect to Him that you may look together on its foolish cause and laugh with Him awhile. You judge effects, but He has judged their cause. And by His judgment are effects removed. Perhaps you come in tears. But hear Him say, “My brother, holy Son of God, behold your idle dream, in which this could occur.” And you will leave the holy instant with your laughter and your brother’s joined with His.

10. The secret of salvation is but this: that you are doing this unto yourself. No matter what the form of the attack, this still is true. Whoever takes the role of enemy and of attacker, still is this the truth. Whatever seems to be the cause of any pain and suffering you feel, this is still true. For you would not react at all to figures in a dream you knew that you were dreaming. Let them be as hateful and as vicious as they may, they could have no effect on you unless you failed to recognize it is your dream.

11. This single lesson learned will set you free from suffering, whatever form it takes. The Holy Spirit will repeat this one inclusive lesson of deliverance until it has been learned, regardless of the form of suffering that brings you pain. Whatever hurt you bring to Him He will make answer with this very simple truth. For this one answer takes away the cause of every form of sorrow and of pain. The form affects His answer not at all, for He would teach you but the single cause of all of them, no matter what their form. And you will understand that miracles reflect this simple statement, “I have done this thing, and it is this I would undo.”

12. Bring, then, all forms of suffering to Him who knows that every one is like the rest. He sees no differences where none exists, and He will teach you how each one is caused. None has a different cause from all the rest, and all of them are easily undone by but a single lesson truly learned. Salvation is a secret you have kept but from yourself. The universe proclaims it so. Yet its witnesses you pay no heed at all. For they attest the thing you do not want to know. They seem to keep it secret from you. Yet you need but learn you chose but not to listen, not to see.

13. How differently will you perceive the world when this is recognized! When you forgive the world your guilt, you will be free of it. Its innocence does not demand your guilt, nor does your guiltlessness rest on its sins. This is the obvious; a secret kept from no one but yourself. And it is this that has maintained you separate from the world, and kept your brother separate from you. Now need you but to learn that both of you are innocent or guilty. The one thing that is impossible is that you be unlike each other, that they both be true. This is the only secret yet to learn. And it will be no secret you are healed. [1]

The way we escape the body’s serial adventures through time, is by learning the secret of salvation.  When we finally weary of the trite melodramas, the ongoing wars and battles and vengeance seeking, the diseases, deaths, and losses, the limitations and restrictions, the demands and vulnerability of the body – we reach for the higher consciousness of Holy Spirit.  We cannot find our Self in the body for the body is only “real” in the dream of time, it is a mere construct in which to enforce limits on that which can have no limits. 

We awaken from the dream we dream by disengaging from it.  Each of us will come to see it for what it is.  To take responsibility for the role we play in it, to understand the difference between cause and effects, we bring everything to Holy Spirit within us.  Crying, sighing, dying, weary, frustrated, or bored – we come away from the encounter with joy and laughter.  It was merely a dream. The sins we made up that came between us and God’s love never happened. It was a figment of our imagination, a dream of specialness, separation, and fear.  A false reality that opposed the reality of God.   

You may have a different dream than mine, it may take a completely different form than mine – but your dream and my dream have the same source, the same cause.  It is a dream of separation, it is a dream of specialness, it is a dream where my innocence makes you guilty and you and your kind are to blame for my unhappiness and strife.  As long as I choose to live in this dream, time will bind me to the laws of this world – seek but do not find; ask but deny the straight and true answer, yearn for love but settle for a fear-driven vain substitute of loneliness, looking forward to death.

We believe our dreams unique and distinct from others.  We cherish our murders and mysteries, our pain and suffering, our hurt and disappointment, our boredom, frustration, and weariness as long as we can name it or blame it on someone else. But you are the dreamer of your dream, and I am the dreamer of mine, and the world we made divides us, makes us decidedly different and remarkably weird to each other. Only a dream would make of us a puzzle, going about in circles, chasing after meaning, purpose, and truth, while the very universe proclaims the oneness of our reality. 

Today in your personal devotions, ask Holy Spirit to show you the difference between cause and effects. See the cause as separation, see the results of separation as the call to unity. The one thing that is impossible is for me to awaken without you for Heaven will not be Heaven without you, and you and I must awaken together as one.  Picture this state in your mind as one of laughter, the joy of being together, of truly communicating and Being.  In this state we do not substitute the bliss of our Being with gossip, slander, and intrigue, blame and shame. These subjects hold no interest to us for we see each other in our true and liberated form.  We have no need for rules or limitations for we are pure.  As we reach for the higher consciousness of Holy Spirit, the adventures are no longer serial ones limited by a flesh body with all its dull demands and vulnerabilities, but one everlasting happy state of Being filled with certainty and surety of purpose – that we Be as God created us to be.  Like Him in the Ideals that have no rival or reversals. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 27 The healing of the dream. viii. the “hero” of the dream. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM CHAPTER 27 The Healing of the Dream VII The Dreamer of the Dream

ACIM Chapter 27. VII The Dreamer of the Dream

1. Suffering is an emphasis upon all that the world has done to injure you. Here is the world’s demented version of salvation clearly shown. Like to a dream of punishment, in which the dreamer is unconscious of what brought on the attack against himself, he sees himself attacked unjustly and by something not himself. He is the victim of this “something else,” a thing outside himself, for which he has no reason to be held responsible. He must be innocent because he knows not what he does, but what is done to him. Yet is his own attack upon himself apparent still, for it is he who bears the suffering. And he cannot escape because its source is seen outside himself.

2. Now you are being shown you can escape. All that is needed is you look upon the problem as it is, and not the way that you have set it up. How could there be another way to solve a problem that is very simple, but has been obscured by heavy clouds of complication, which were made to keep the problem unresolved? Without the clouds the problem will emerge in all its primitive simplicity. The choice will not be difficult, because the problem is absurd when clearly seen. No one has difficulty making up his mind to let a simple problem be resolved if it is seen as hurting him, and also very easily removed.

3. The “reasoning” which the world is made, on which it rests, by which it is maintained, is simply this: “You are the cause of what I do. Your presence justifies my wrath, and you exist and think apart from me. While you attack I must be innocent. And what I suffer from is your attack.” No one who looks upon this “reasoning” exactly as it is could fail to see it does not follow and it makes no sense. Yet it seems sensible because it looks as if the world were hurting you. And so it seems as if there is no need to go beyond the obvious in terms of cause.

4. There is indeed a need. The world’s escape from condemnation is a need which those within the world are joined in sharing. Yet they do not recognize their common need. For each one thinks that if he does his part, the condemnation of the world will rest on him. And it is this that he perceives to be his part in its deliverance. Vengeance must have a focus. Otherwise is the avenger’s knife in his own hand and pointed to himself. And he must see it in another’s hand if he would be a victim of attack he did not choose. And thus he suffers from the wounds a knife he does not hold has made upon himself.

5. This is the purpose of the world he sees. And looked at thus, the world provides the means by which this purpose seems to be fulfilled. The means attest the purpose but are not themselves a cause. Nor will the cause be changed by seeing it apart from its effects. The cause produces the effects, which then bear witness to the cause, and not themselves. Look, then, beyond effects. It is not here the cause of suffering and sin must lie. And dwell not on the suffering and sin, for they are but reflections of their cause.

6. The part you play in salvaging the world from condemnation is your own escape. Forget not that the witness to the world of evil cannot speak except for what has seen a need for evil in the world. And this is where your guilt was first upheld. In separation from your brother was the first attack upon yourself begun. And it is this the world bears witness to. Seek not another cause, nor look upon the mighty legions of its witnesses for its undoing. They support its claim on your allegiance. What conceals the truth is not where you should look to find the truth.

7. The witnesses to sin all stand within one little space. And it is here you find the cause of your perspective on the world. Once you were unaware of what the cause of everything the world appeared to thrust upon you, uninvited and unasked, must really be. Of one thing you were sure: of all the many causes you perceived as bringing pain and suffering to you, your guilt was not among them. Nor did you in any way request them for yourself. This is how all illusions came about. The one who makes them does not see himself as making them, and their reality does not depend on him. Whatever cause they have is something quite apart from him, and what he sees is separate from his mind. He cannot doubt his dream’s reality because he does not see the part he plays in making them and making them seem real.

8. No one can awaken from a dream the world is dreaming for him. He becomes a part of someone else’s dream. He cannot choose to awaken from a dream he did not make. Helpless he stands, a victim to a dream conceived and cherished by a separate mind. Careless indeed of him this mind must be, as thoughtless of his peace and happiness as is the weather or the time of day. It loves him not but casts him as it will in any role that satisfies its dream. So little is his worth that he is but a dancing shadow, leaping up and down according to a senseless plot conceived within the idle dreaming of the world.

9. This is the only picture you can see; the one alternative that you can choose, the other possibility of cause, if you be not the dreamer of your dreams. And this is what you choose if you deny the cause of suffering is in your mind. Be glad indeed it is, for thus are you the one decider of your destiny in time. The choice is yours to make between a sleeping death and dreams of evil or a happy awakening and joy of life.

10. What could you choose between but life or death, waking or sleeping, peace or war, your dreams or your reality? There is a risk of thinking death is peace because the world equates the body with the Self which God created. Yet a thing can never be its opposite. And death is opposite to peace because it is the opposite of life. And life is peace. Awaken and forget all thoughts of death, and you will find you have the peace of God. Yet if the choice is really given you, then you must see the causes of the things you choose between exactly as they are and where they are.

11. What choices can be made between two states, but one of which is clearly recognized? Who could be free to choose between effects, when only one is seen as up to him? And honest choice could never be perceived as one in which the choice is split between a tiny you and an enormous world, with different dreams about the truth in you. The gap between reality and dreams lies not between the dreaming of the world and what you dream in secret. They are one. The dreaming of the world is but a part of your own dream you gave away, and saw as if it were its starting, both. Yet was it started by your secret dream, which you do not perceive although it caused the part you see and do not doubt is real. How could you doubt it while you lie asleep, and dream in secret that its cause is real?

12. A brother separated from yourself, an ancient enemy, a murderer who stalks you in the night and plots your death yet plans that it be lingering and slow; of this you dream. Yet underneath this dream is yet another, in which you become the murderer, the secret enemy, the scavenger and the destroyer of your brother and the world alike. Here is the cause of suffering, the space between your little dreams and your reality. The little gap you do not even see, the birthplace of illusions and of fear, the time of terror and of ancient hate, the instant of disaster, all are here. Here is the cause of unreality. And it is here that it will be undone.

13. You are the dreamer of the world of dreams. No other cause it has, nor ever will. Nothing more fearful than an idle dream has terrified God’s Son and made him think that he has lost his innocence, denied his Father, and made war upon himself. So fearful is the dream, so seeming real, he could not waken to reality without the sweat of terror and a scream of mortal fear, unless a gentler dream preceded his awakening, and allowed his calmer mind to welcome, not to fear, the Voice That calls with love to waken him; a gentler dream, in which his suffering was healed and where his brother was his friend. God willed he waken gently and with joy and gave him means to waken without fear.

14. Accept the dream He gave instead of yours. It is not difficult to change a dream when once the dreamer has been recognized. Rest in the Holy Spirit and allow His gentle dreams to take the place of those you dreamed in terror and in fear of death. He brings forgiving dreams, in which the choice is not who is the murderer and who shall be the victim. In the dreams he brings there is no murder and there is no death. The dream of guilt is fading from your sight although your eyes are closed. A smile has come to lighten up your sleeping face. The sleep is peaceful now, for these are happy dreams.

15. Dream softly of your sinless brother, who unites with you in holy innocence. And from this dream the Lord of Heaven will Himself awaken His beloved Son. Dream of your brother’s kindness instead of dwelling in your dreams on his mistakes. Select his thoughtfulness to dream about instead of counting up the hurts he gave. Forgive him his illusions and give thanks to him for all the helpfulness he gave. And do not brush aside his many gifts because he is not perfect in your dreams. He represents his Father, Whom you see is offering both life and death to you.

16. Brother, He gives but life. Yet what you see as gifts your brother offers represent the gifts you dream your Father gives to you. Let all your brothers’ gifts be seen in light of charity and kindness offered you. And let no pain disturb your dream of deep appreciation for his gifts to you.[1]

We have darkened our consciousness with fearful dreams of all that would oppose our Father’s love, and I must take responsibility for this even as you must take responsibility for it.  It seems like we have been victimized, that we came into the world an innocent and that it was the fault of others that our lives have been blighted, that we have lived in fear, that others are more privileged than we are.  The list seems long and legion of all the ways in which we were born into the wrong family, kept from the right crowd, denied our basic human rights and failed to gain as much as others who worked far less than we did.  The sins and sorrows of the world weigh heavy upon us.  We pledge allegiance to belief systems that teach us to fear each other, to hold each other in deep suspicion, to wish hellfire and brimstone upon those who are not one of us. 

But Jesus says we dream the dream which this realm rests.  It is me and it is you.  We are to stop cherishing and practicing the false ideas that keep the nightmare in place.  I must not wait for others to see this and take responsibility. We must stop dreaming the dream of fear and hate, disease and death and accept the dream God gives us instead. 

God gives us forgiving dreams full of mercy and grace.  In these dreams, I am not judging who is good and who is evil.  Because in the dreams God gives, there is no evil.  In the dreams God gives there is no danger, no disease, no death.  Our darkened consciousnesses are healed in this dream that prepares us for our return to His Kingdom.  In the dream God gives us, we live in the world, but we are not of the world for I accept the dream of your goodness instead of all the ways you fail to measure up.  When the mean things you said and did come to my mind, I decide to remember all your thoughtful, generous deeds instead.  I no longer keep account of how dangerous it is to confide in you because I remember how precious you are and what a good friend.  No longer do I overlook the ways you have enriched my life because you are as Christ to me, you represent the Father, and you give me life. 

God’s dream is one of charity and kindness, tenderness and mercy.  There is no pain in the dream that prepares us for our return to Him.  There are no whippings, no humiliation, no shame, and no blame – only our deepest gratitude and love for each other, because together we realize our oneness as His Son.   Today take responsibility for the dream you dream, let your dreams of guilt and shame be transformed into ones of mercy and grace and be awakened gently and with joy. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 27 The healing of the dream. vii. the dreamer of the dream. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit: 

comment 0


ACIM Chapter 27. V. The Healing Example

1. The only way to heal is to be healed. The miracle extends without your help, but you are needed that it can begin. Accept the miracle of healing, and it will go forth because of what it is. It is its nature to extend itself the instant it is born. And it is born the instant it is offered and received. No one can ask another to be healed. But he can let himself be healed, and thus offer the other what he has received. Who can bestow upon another what he does not have? And who can share what he denies himself? The Holy Spirit speaks to you. He does not speak to someone else. Yet by your listening His Voice extends because you have accepted what He says.

2. Health is the witness unto health. As long as it is unattested, it remains without conviction. Only when it has been demonstrated is it proved and must provide a witness that compels belief. No one is healed through double messages. If you wish only to be healed, you heal. Your single purpose makes this possible. But if you are afraid of healing, then it cannot come through you. The only thing that is required for all healing is a lack of fear. The fearful are not healed and cannot heal. This does not mean the conflict must be gone forever from your mind to heal. For if it were, there were no need for healing then. But it does mean, if only for an instant, you love without attack. An instant is sufficient. Miracles wait not on time.

3. The holy instant is the miracle’s abiding place. From there, each one is born into this world as witness to a state of mind that has transcended conflict and has reached to peace. It carries comfort from the place of peace into the battleground and demonstrates that war has no effects. For all the hurt that war has sought to bring, the broken bodies and the shattered limbs, the screaming dying and the silent dead, are gently lifted up and comforted.

4. There is no sadness where a miracle has come to heal. And nothing more than just one instant of your love without attack is necessary that all this occur. In that one instant you are healed, and in that single instant is all healing done. What stands apart from you when you accept the blessing that the holy instant brings? Be not afraid of blessing, for the One Who blesses you loves all the world, and leaves nothing within the world that could be feared. But if you shrink from blessing, will the world indeed seem fearful, for you have withheld its peace and comfort, leaving it to die.

5. Would not a world so bitterly bereft be looked on as a condemnation by the one who could have saved it, but stepped back because he was afraid of being healed? The eyes of all the dying bring reproach, and suffering whispers, “What is there to fear?” Consider well this question. It is asked of you on your behalf. A dying world asks only that you rest an instant from attack upon yourself, that it be healed.

6. Come to the holy instant and be healed, for nothing that is there received is left behind on your returning to the world. And being blessed you will bring blessing. Life is given you to give the dying world. And suffering eyes no longer will accuse but shine in thanks to you who blessing gave. The holy instant’s radiance will light your eyes and give them sight to see beyond all suffering and see Christ’s face instead. Healing replaces suffering. Who looks on one cannot perceive the other, for they cannot both be there. And what you see the world will witness and will witness to.

7. Thus is your healing everything the world requires, that it may be healed. It needs one lesson that has perfectly been learned. And then, when you forget it, will the world remind you gently of what you have taught. No reinforcement will its thanks withhold from you who let yourself be healed that it might live. It will call forth its witnesses to show the face of Christ to you who brought the sight to them, by which they witnessed it. The world of accusation is replaced by one in which all eyes look lovingly upon the Friend who brought them their release. And happily your brother will perceive the many friends he thought were enemies.

8. Problems are not specific, but they take specific forms, and these specific shapes make up the world. And no one understands the nature of his problem. If he did, it would be there no more for him to see. Its very nature is that it is not. And thus, while he perceives it he can not perceive it as it is. But healing is apparent in specific instances and generalizes to include them all. This is because they really are the same, despite their different forms. All learning aims at transfer, which becomes complete within two situations that are seen as one, for only common elements are there. Yet this can only be attained by One Who does not see the differences you see. The total transfer of your learning is not made by you. But that it has been made in spite of all the differences you see, convinces you that they could not be real.

9. Your healing will extend and will be brought to problems that you thought were not your own. And it will also be apparent that your many different problems will be solved as any one of them has been escaped. It cannot be their differences which made this possible, for learning does not jump from situations to their opposites and bring the same results. All healing must proceed in lawful manner, in accord with laws that have been properly perceived but never violated. Fear you not the way that you perceive them. You are wrong, but there is One within you Who is right.

10. Leave, then, the transfer of your learning to the One Who really understands its laws, and Who will guarantee that they remain unviolated and unlimited. Your part is merely to apply what He has taught you to yourself, and He will do the rest. And it is thus the power of your learning will be proved to you by all the many different witnesses it finds. Your brother first among them will be seen, but thousands stand behind him, and beyond each one of them there are a thousand more. Each one may seem to have a problem that is different from the rest. Yet they are solved together. And their common answer shows the questions could not have been separate.

11. Peace be to you to whom is healing offered. And you will learn that peace is given you when you accept the healing for yourself. Its total value need not be appraised by you to let you understand that you have benefited from it. What occurred within the instant that love entered in without attack will stay with you forever. Your healing will be one of its effects as will your brother’s. Everywhere you go, will you behold its multiplied effects. Yet all the witnesses that you behold will be far less than all there really are. Infinity cannot be understood by merely counting up its separate parts. God thanks you for your healing, for He knows it is a gift of love unto His Son, and therefore is it given unto Him.[1]

In your personal devotions today ask Holy Spirit to make you a healing example.  To come to healing we must simply desire love with no attack on anybody.  We must say good-bye to all fear, dismay, disease, and death.  We must let go of all need for guilt, shame, sin, and sacrifice.  In the fairness and goodness of Holy Spirit, we may falter at times; we may begin to believe in the reality of the perceptual realm at times; we may get our feelings hurt or think there are good reasons to hurt the feelings of others – but all healing needs is one holy instant in which we wish nobody harm, in which we take all the sting and shame and sin off of all those we would condemn and offer only forgiveness, mercy, and love. 

This is our healing.  This not only heals us, but it heals the world.  For every time we offer one holy instant to the world, we lift the consciousness of the whole of it.  When I accept God’s love and mercy; God’s Grace in me extends it to you, and you can only extend it to keep it.  The healing you and I experience in accepting God’s love and mercy will extend far beyond our own personal problems.  The world is healed for no matter how many different forms of sickness the world can come up with, there is only one source, and it is fear. 

Without fear we rely upon our Holiness for only in our higher consciousness do we understand the reality of God’s Kingdom, the Laws of Love, the absolute invulnerability we have in Spirit.  Apply what we are learning to ourselves, and our holy Spirit does the rest.  We must not worry or fret about our progress – this is something we would never come to on our own for there is nothing that would benefit the ego to what we are doing!  We are reaching to a higher consciousness than can be found in the perceptual realm; we are reaching beyond the world of flesh and bones; we remember our real Kingdom and our real Home. 

The world cannot be healed without your healing example.  There is only one perfectly learned lesson that is required – while problems are all the same they take different forms, and it is the forms of the one problem that make up the whole perceptual world.  If we understood the nature of our problems we would not be able to see them anymore.  They would simply dissipate in our knowledge of their unreality, their falsity, their insubstantial lies.  If you are born into the world, you still have something that you believe is real in the world that is worth seeking in place of God’s Kingdom.  And because you believe even one thing in the illusion is worth separating yourself from God and His Son, you will have problems – not because God gave you problems in order to teach you a good lesson, but simply because you have entered a realm that opposes reality, that makes opposites, that chooses to be different than God rather than the same as God. 

We cannot learn this lesson on our own.  We cannot be delivered from the illusion with our human perceptions, our human intellect, our human ability to cipher and sleuth.  We can only learn this lesson by One Who can look upon what we have made and know that it is not real.  In our humanity we will always get it wrong, but Holy Spirit is always right. 

There is nothing perceived in this world as a problem that has any reality whatsoever.  All problems no matter how diverse are solved as one – only God is Real. God is Love, and Love has no fear in it, no problems in it, no cares, concerns, or conflicts. 

This is where we find our peace and with peace comes healing just as healing comes with peace.  In the eternal present moment we find love without attack of any kind, and it will stay with us forever.  Healed, we will stay healed and give healing everywhere we go.  Jesus tells us in the last paragraph that while we will have many witnesses that testify to our healing examples, there will be far more than what we can now imagine for infinity cannot be understood by counting up its separate parts! 

Let it be you God thanks for your healing for it is a gift of love unto His Son.

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 27 The healing of the dream. v. the healing example. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM Chapter 27. IV The Quiet Answer

1. In quietness are all things answered, and is every problem quietly resolved. In conflict there can be no answer and no resolution, for its purpose is to make no resolution possible, and to ensure no answer will be plain. A problem set in conflict has no answer, for it is seen in different ways. And what would be an answer from one point of view is not an answer in another light. You are in conflict. Thus it must be clear you cannot answer anything at all, for conflict has no limited effects. Yet if God gave an answer there must be a way in which your problems are resolved, for what He wills already has been done.

2. Thus it must be that time is not involved and every problem can be answered now. Yet it must also be that, in your state of mind, solution is impossible. Therefore, God must have given you a way of reaching to another state of mind in which the answer is already there. Such is the holy instant. It is here that all your problems should be brought and left. Here they belong, for here their answer is. And where its answer is, a problem must be simple and be easily resolved. It must be pointless to attempt to solve a problem where the answer cannot be. Yet just as surely it must be resolved if it is brought to where the answer is.

3. Attempt to solve no problems but within the holy instant’s surety. For there, the problem will be answered and resolved. Outside there will be no solution, for there is no answer there that could be found. No where outside a single, simple question is ever asked. The world can only ask a double question. One with many answers can have no answers. None of them will do. It does not ask a question to be answered, but only to restate its point of view.

4. All questions asked within this world are but a way of looking, not a question asked. A question asked in hate cannot be answered because it is an answer in itself. A double question asks and answers, both attesting the same thing in different form. The world asks but one question. It is this: “Of these illusions, which of them is true? Which ones establish peace and offer joy? And which can bring escape from all the pain of which this world is made?” Whatever form that question takes, its purpose is the same. It asks but to establish sin is real, and answers in the form of preference. “Which sin do you prefer? That is the one that you should choose. The others are not true. What can the body get that you would want the most of all? It is your servant and also your friend. But tell it what you want, and it will serve you lovingly and well.” And this is not a question, for it tells you what you want and where to go for it. It leaves no room to question its beliefs, except that what it states takes question’s form.

5. A pseudo-question has no answer. It dictates the answer even as it asks. Thus is all questioning within the world a form of propaganda for itself. Just as the body’s witnesses are but the senses from within itself, so are the answers to the questions of the world contained within the questions that are asked. Where answers represent the questions, they add nothing new, and nothing has been learned. An honest question is a learning tool that asks for something that you do not know. It does not set conditions for response, but merely asks what the response should be. But no one in a conflict state is free to ask this question, for he does not want an honest answer where the conflict ends.

6. Only within the holy instant can an honest question honestly be asked. And from the meaning of the question does the meaningfulness of the answer come. Here is it possible to separate your wishes from the answer, so it can be given you and also be received. The answer is provided everywhere. Yet it is only here it can be heard. An honest answer asks no sacrifice because it answers questions truly asked. The questions of the world but ask of whom is sacrificed demanded, asking not if sacrifice is meaningful at all. And so, unless the answer tells “of whom,” it will remain unrecognized, unheard, and thus the question is preserved intact because it gave the answer to itself. The holy instant is the interval in which the mind is still enough to hear an answer that is not entailed within the question asked. It offers something new and different from the question. How could it be answered if it but repeats itself?

7. Therefore, attempt to solve no problems in a world from which the answer has been barred. But bring the problem to the only place that holds the answer lovingly for you. Here are the answers that will solve your problems because they stand apart from them and see what can be answered; what the question is. Within the world the answers merely raise another question, though they leave their first unanswered. In the holy instant, you can bring the question to the answer, and receive the answer that was made for you.[1]

Whether we realize this or not, we who are in the flesh are in conflict.  We live in a realm of opposites.  In a realm of opposites there is all that would oppose truth but no truth to be found, no solutions to resolve our opposition and the way in which we cherish the spaces between us.  We are addicted to that which opposes!  Which is why we cannot resolve any issue or come up with any answer at all because we love having different viewpoints and opposing sides, we love the debate and the argument, we love not our enemies, but we do so love having enemies in which to oppose! 

To step out of this is to step out of the past and into the present and presence of God’s Will, into God’s Answer and solution.  Here in this holy instant is every problem answered in the present moment.  We do not come to the holy instant with our solutions to our problems and the hot messes we get ourselves into.  We come without hope in our own resolutions.  We have tried them.  We have done our best.  We have raised those kids to the best of our abilities, and they still have serious and ongoing issues that keep us up at night fretting over them, complaining about them to our coworkers, spending our money on rehab and therapy and an endless array of human solutions that never fix the problem, but only seem to raise more questions which have no answers. 

To reach the state of mind that gives us the answer, which resolves every problem no matter how insignificant or seemingly unworthy of bringing to holiness, we must first reach the conclusion that we cannot fix it, that there is no hope, that we cannot figure it out, and we do not have the means to make it better.  This is not an exercise to make God feel big about Himself and us feel small.  It is simply truth.  We cannot fix anything.  We cannot answer our heart’s longing.  We cannot come to agreement.  There is no political system in the world that will make us happy.  There are no doctors that will cure our diseases.  There are no educational systems that will bestow upon us wisdom, kindness, purity, and love. There is no particular person that will fulfill and gratify our desires. This is the truth and to come to the truth, we must realize this.  We were not created to be flesh and blood, to sin and sacrifice, to engage in the struggle for survival only to die another day.  This was a choice which we made and while it is not unforgiveable, we must not be shocked or taken aback by a realm in which terrible things seem to happen to innocent people because in a realm that opposes the truth, there are no limits to the horrors that can take place! 

As we read over today’s devotional text, we learn that we must take every problem to the quiet place, the holy place, the place wherein lies the quiet, certain, single answer.  Turn to the world for help and we will be given many different answers, each one will demand a sacrifice of love, peace, and joy, each one will attempt to make illusions true by easing pain and bringing temporary comfort and peace to the questioner at the sacrifice of somebody else.  All the world can seem to help us with is our body and our body, being neutral has no way to keep what has never truly been given. 

To illustrate this we can take the desire we have for a particular person to love us, to desire us as much as we desire them.  We can take all kinds of measures to get them to want us.  We can pretty ourselves up; we can go to the gym; we can accumulate a lot of money in which to attract them. We can be seen in all the right places.  We can promise them things that others cannot or will not offer them.  We can draft poems about them, plot and scheme and promise God to read our bibles every day for the rest of our lives if only He makes them love us.  But as long as we are searching for the answer to this problem in the world, we are going to waste ourselves chasing after what can only leave us with ashes in the end.  Even if we get the one we so desire, we will be disappointed and despair.

When we go to the holy place within us and ask Holy Spirit to resolve our problems, to answer our questions, all that is not worthy of us falls away.  The world and every form of its propaganda is seen for what it is.  We have come to the place where we want what God wants for us – we do not set conditions and ask for a particular lover or friend, for riches and jewels, for flash and flirtations.  We want to know truth; we want to know our reason for being; we want the end of opposition and opposites; we want certainty and singleness of purpose. 

This is our holiness where only an honest question is asked and an honest answer is given.  In the holy instant of the present moment, can the response I want be separated from what is the best for me.  In that instant of holiness, the now – my past and its clamor for this and for that,  its false hope in the world and the things that I imagine are in it, its grudges and hard feelings – fall away, and the answer can be given to me, and I can receive it.  The answer to everything is always there – in the holy instant and only there can it be heard, can it be given us, can it be received by us. 

There is never any sacrifice involved to anyone.  My gain is not riding on your loss but only your gain.  For when my mind becomes still, the answer to the problem between you and me is no longer a problem but becomes the very catalyst that brings us to holiness, to purity, to innocence.  One of us does not get to be the good guy at the expense of one being bad.  There are no demands for apology, recompense, or promises to never repeat a mistake like that again.  There is only truth.  A stepping out of the fiction of the past and accepting the purity of the holy present.

In your quiet time today read over this passage slowly and carefully, taking time to apply the concepts to the problems you may be experiencing.  Do not attempt to solve these problems with the world’s answers which will be centered about the body and the ego but bring the problem before Holy Spirit where the loving solution to every trial we face can be found. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 27 The healing of the dream. iv. the quiet answer. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM – Chapter 27 III. Beyond Symbols

1. Power cannot oppose. For opposition would weaken it, and weakened power is a contradiction in ideas. Weak strength is meaningless, and power used to weaken is employed to limit. And therefore it must be limited and weak because that is its purpose. Power is unopposed, to be itself. No weakness can intrude on it without changing it into something it is not. To weaken is to limit and impose an opposite that contradicts the concept that it attacks. And by this does it join to the idea a something it is not and make it unintelligible. Who can understand a double concept such as “weakened power” or “hateful love?”

2. You have decided that your brother is a symbol for a “hateful love,” a “weakened power,” and above all, a “living death.” and so he has no meaning to you, for he stands for what is meaningless. He represents a double thought, where half is cancelled out by the remaining half. Yet even this is quickly contradicted by the half it cancelled out, and so they both are gone. And now he stands for nothing. Symbols which but represent ideas that cannot be must stand for empty space and nothingness. Yet nothingness and empty space cannot be interference. What can interfere with the awareness of reality is the belief that there is something there.

3. The picture of your brother that you see means nothing. There is nothing to attack or to deny; to love or hate, or to endow with power or to see as weak. The picture has been wholly cancelled out. Because it symbolized a contradiction that cancelled out the thought it represents. And thus the picture has no cause at all. Who can perceive effect without a cause? What can the causeless be but nothingness? The picture of your brother that you see is wholly absent and has never been. Let, then, the empty space it occupies be recognized as vacant, and the time devoted to its seeing be perceived as idly spent, a time unoccupied.

4. An empty space that is not seen as filled, an unused interval of time not seen as spent and fully occupied, becomes a silent invitation to the truth to enter, and to make itself at home. No preparation can be made that would enhance the invitation’s real appeal. For what you leave as vacant God will fill, and where He is there must the truth abide. Unweakened power, with no opposite, is what creation is. For this there are no symbols. Nothing points beyond the truth, for what can stand for more than everything? Yet true undoing must be kind. And so the first replacement for your picture is another picture of another kind.

5. As nothingness cannot be pictured, so there is no symbol for totality. Reality is ultimately known without a form, unpictured and unseen. Forgiveness is not yet a power known as fully free of limits. Yet it sets no limits you have chosen to impose. Forgiveness is the means by which the truth is represented temporarily. It lets the Holy Spirit make exchange of pictures possible, until the time when aids are meaningless and learning done. No learning aid has use that can extend beyond the goal of learning. When its aim has been accomplished it is functionless. Yet in the learning interval it has a use that now you fear, but yet will love.

6. The picture of your brother given you to occupy the space so lately left unoccupied and vacant will not need defense of any kind. For you will give it overwhelming preference. Nor delay an instant in deciding that it is the only one you want. It does not stand for double concepts. Though it is but half the picture and is incomplete, within itself it is the same. The other half of what it represents remains unknown, but it is not cancelled out. And thus is God left free to take the final step Himself. For this you need no pictures and no learning aids. And what will ultimately take the place of every learning aid will merely be.

7. Forgiveness vanishes and symbols fade, and nothing that the eyes have ever seen, or ears have heard remains to be perceived. A power holy limitless has come, not to destroy, but to receive its own. There is no choice of function anywhere. The choice you fear to lose you never had. Yet only this appears to interfere with power unlimited and single thoughts, complete and happy, without opposite. You do not know the peace of power that opposes nothing. Yet no other kind can be at all. Give welcome to the power beyond forgiveness, and beyond the world of symbols and of limitations. He would merely be, and so He merely is.[1]

In today’s meditation contemplate the meaning of power.  In the perceptual realm power is used to weaken and to control, power is seen as having the ability to take from the weak and make weaker and subservient.  However, the real meaning of power is to extend and share its strength.  Power, to be real power, cannot be opposed for when opposed it would spend itself in defense rather than in extending and sharing of itself.  Power cannot have an opposite or it is no longer power but has an equally opposing force which would weaken it and give it a double meaning.  “Weakened power” is an oxymoron, right along with Christian soldier and an angry vengeful God of Love.

Spend time with these ideas for as we let the words of today’s text rest upon our minds we are set free from the ideas which held us bound to a fearful concept of God which makes Him out to be a weakened power, a sad creator whose very creations would turn against Him and fill Him with rage.  A bloodthirsty God of Love is a contradiction in terms!  A punishing God is not a God Whose Love seeks only correction and reunion. 

In paragraph two, Jesus tells us that we perceive each other as a picture rather than as part of us.  You are over there – separate from me, going about your life, doing things that are different than me.  When I look at you, I do not see myself, I see you – and many of the things you do and say and how you spend your time are not in agreement with what I think you should be doing.  I may be the kind of person who likes to collect facts about you and the more I dig up information that tells me about you the more I find to both hate and love, the more I find out about your weaknesses and your strengths, the more I find out about your wellness and your sicknesses and perversions and of course your death.  In all of these opposites you are nothing but a double thought to me – for what has meaning is canceled out by what has no meaning at all!  In my mind, you stand for nothing but a mess of useless facts that I have gathered about you.  You may as well not even be there because what I have collected about you in my mind is certainly not you, but rather a pointless insane patchwork of useless information.  It tells me nothing about you at all.  And yet I will believe that this image I have made of you with all manner of bits and pieces crazily patched together is you and I will relate to that and never know you as who and what you really are. 

There is nothing at all about this perception of you that has any substance – there is nothing to love or hate, attack or defend, to bow to in deference or to bully or mock.  Because I see you in contradiction – you are not there, the picture I have of you cancels you out.  My perception of you is a fabrication then.  To understand this is to let it go.  When I can let go of the picture I have about you, I can let that empty space it occupied in my mind, that made-up version that would keep me from every knowing and loving the real you be recognized for what it is.  I can realize that I never really knew you, that all the time I spent ruminating upon the pain you caused me, the things you said about me, the ways in which you betrayed my trust was causeless, it had no meaning.  That time would have been better spent not thinking anything at all about the things I made up about you. 

For when we leave time and space free of the perceptual world, when we free our mind from all the useless facts, the ongoing activities, the gossip and the news, the drama and the trauma – we give a silent invitation to the truth to enter and to make its home.  The only way to prepare for God is to free our mind of all the opposites that we have collected, to get rid of our small-minded, earthbound perceptions of a world that would oppose all that is real, everlasting, and true.  Free our mind of that, come to this understanding and God fills the void where our lies, illusions, and false concepts have taken His place. 

Jesus tells us that unweakened power, with no opposite, is what Creation is.  There are no symbols for this.  We cannot see it with our flesh eyes.  We cannot stand apart from it and make up stories about it, collect facts about it, piece together a false conception of it and try to convince others this is the truth.  Unopposed power is authentic.  There is nothing beyond it.  There is nothing but it.  Unopposed power has nothing to attack and nothing to defend.  It stands for everything. 

In our contemplation of Unopposed Power, we realize that to realize this, to have this and to be this, is to align ourselves with the Mind that would not oppose truth, which would not make up an opposite or a contradiction.  There is no war in Peace; there is no hatred in Love, there is no fear in Joy.  Let the Last Judgment be one in which we judge against the contradictions in our concepts of our Father God and Christ, His Son.  The undoing of our belief in that which would oppose power, love, joy, and peace must be gentle, loving, and above all patient and kind.  And so the first replacement for the perceptual world we have made in opposition to all that is true, is one of forgiveness. 

Forgiveness represents the truth in the temporary world.  When I can forgive the picture I have pieced together about you, Holiness can then make the exchange of pictures possible until the time comes when I can know you and love you as one with me.  When I no longer need a picture of you, I will not need to forgive you all the things I have collected about you to cancel out my love for you!  I will no longer need any learning aids at all to help me in this area because I will be able to perceive you truly even as you will be able to perceive me truly.  There will no nothing to forgive beyond this realm, but in the meantime when we still think that we can hurt each other, betray each other to the death, mock and scorn and deride one another, we need the picture of forgiveness to carry us through.

As we learn this concept and practice it in our daily lives, my picture of you and your picture of me given us by Holy Spirit will need no defense of any kind. I will come to love the forgiving picture of you for its gentleness and goodness, its kindness and joy.  The peace that comes along with this picture will free my mind of turmoil, alleviate the troubling rumblings and grumblings I held against you.  I will give this picture my overwhelming preference!  This will be the only picture of you that I want because there is no contradiction in it.  There is no weakened power, no hateful love.  My mind may still be split for I am living in flesh and seeing with my flesh eyes, but I am making a conscious choice to go with Holiness and clearing my mind of all that would oppose God. 

This is a conscious, deliberate practice at this point.  We are called to heal our relationships and quite frankly we could never do this on our own.  Our egos would prevent us from wishing to heal because it thrives on hard feelings, estrangement, resentment, grudges, and the poetic pathos of loneliness, friendlessness and despair. It may seem difficult at times to take a stand against the ego, but do not let it be a loss to you for with practice the forgiving picture is the only one that will make sense to us and return our minds to the love, joy, and peace of God’s Kingdom. 

In paragraph six Jesus tells us that it is the forgiving picture that frees our mind of the opposition to God to the point where God Himself awakens us to His Kingdom where we will need no symbols, no perceptions, no practice at all, for we will simply Be. 

Read over the last paragraph in today’s text and explore the concept of the holy limitless power which comes not to destroy but to receive its own.  Realize that the power of choice that you are so afraid of losing, is not a choice you ever really had for nothing can oppose God and there is no opposite to truth.  

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 27 The healing of the dream. iii. beyond all symbols. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM Chapter 27 II. The Fear of Healing 9-16

9. Who, then, fears healing? Only those to whom their brothers sacrifice, and pain are seen to represent their own serenity. Their helplessness and weakness represent the grounds on which they justify his pain. The constant sting of guilt he suffers serves to prove that he is slave, but they are free. The constant pain they suffer demonstrates that they are free because they hold him bound. And sickness is desired to prevent a shift of balance in the sacrifice. How could the Holy Spirit be deterred an instant, even less, to reason with an argument for sickness such as this? And need your healing be delayed because you pause to listen to insanity?

10. Correction is not your function. It belongs to One Who knows of fairness, not of guilt. If you assume correction’s role, you lose the function of forgiveness. No one can forgive until he learns correction is but to forgive, and never to accuse. Alone, you cannot see they are the same, and therefore is correction not of you. Identity and function are the same, and by your function do you know yourself. And thus, if you confuse your function with the function of another, you must be confused about yourself and who you are. What is the separation but a wish to take God’s function from him and deny that it is his? Yet if it is not his it is not yours, for you must lose what you would take away.

11. In a split mind, identity must seem to be divided. Nor can anyone perceive a function unified which has conflicting purposes and different ends. Correction, to a mind so split, must be a way to punish sins you think are yours in someone else. And thus does he become your victim, not your brother, different from you in that he is more guilty, thus in need of your correction, as the one more innocent than he. This splits his function off from yours and gives you both a different role. And so you cannot be perceived as one, and with a single function that would mean a shared identity with but one end.

12.  Correction you would do must separate, because that is the function given it by you. When you perceive correction is the same as pardon, then you also know the Holy Spirit’s Mind and yours are one. And so your own identity is found. Yet must He work with what is given Him, and you allow Him only half your mind. And thus He represents the other half and seems to have a different purpose from the one you cherish, and you think is yours. Thus does your function seem divided, with a half in opposition to a half. And these two halves appear to represent a split within a self perceived as two.

13. Consider how this self-perception must extend, and do not overlook the fact that every thought extends because that is its purpose, being what it really is. From an idea of self as two, there comes a necessary view of function split between the two. And what you would correct is only half the error, which you think is all of it. Your brother’s sins become the central target for correction, lest your errors and his own be seen as one. Yours are mistakes, but his are sins and not the same as yours. His merit punishment, while yours, in fairness, should be overlooked.

14. In this interpretation of correction, your own mistakes you will not even see. The focus of correction has been placed outside yourself, on one who cannot be a part of you while this perception lasts. What is condemned can never be returned to its accuser, who had hated it, and hates it still as symbol of his fear. This is your brother, focus of your hate, unworthy to be part of you and thus outside yourself; the other half, which is denied. And only what is left without his presence is perceived as all of you. To this remaining half the Holy Spirit must represent the other half until you recognize it is the other half. And this He does by giving you and him a function that is one, not different.

15. Correction is the function given both, but neither one alone. And when it is fulfilled as shared, it must correct mistakes in you and him. It cannot leave mistakes in one unhealed and set the other free. That is divided purpose, which cannot be shared, and so it cannot be the goal in which the Holy Spirit sees His Own. And you can rest assured that He will not fulfill a function that He does not see and recognize as His. For only thus can He keep yours preserved intact, despite your separate views of what your function is. If He upheld divided function, you were lost indeed. His inability to see His goal divided and distinct for you and him, preserves yourself from the awareness of a function not your own. And thus is healing given you and him.

16. Correction must be left to One Who knows correction and forgiveness are the same. With half a mind this is not understood. Leave, then, correction to the Mind that is united, functioning as one because it is not split in purpose, and conceives a single function as its only one. Here is the function given it conceived to be its Own, and not apart from that its Giver keeps because it has been shared. In His acceptance of this function lies the means whereby your mind is unified. His single purpose unifies the halves of you that you perceive as separate. And each forgives the other that he may accept his other half as part of him.[1]

Jesus tells us that our identity and our function are the same.  We can only find our true Selves by finding and practicing our function.  Our function then is to forgive in a world that does not know what it is.  If we try to correct without knowing that forgiving and correction are the same thing, we accuse others, we find them guilty, and we seek punishment, loss, and sacrifice as a means to gratify ourselves over another’s wrongdoing.  None of this makes the situation right or restores happiness or heals the Sonship.  The systems we devise to catch the bad guys do nothing to correct the wrongdoing, to make things right, or to keep everybody safe, but rather serves as a means to maintain wrongdoing, to put a temporary bandage on a gaping wound, to give a pretense of safety.  The correctional systems we adopt on a personal and governmental level operate on guilt and fresh blood which keep the operations real in our minds.  It represents the wish to take God’s function away from Him and make it our own – and yet if correction is not His it cannot be ours, for we only lose when we would gain by God’s loss. 

I cannot see you as myself in my humanity.  Your purpose for being and your way of going about your purpose seem to be at great odds and highly diverse from mine!  I can look at you and think of all kinds of ways to make you a better person.  If only you did things the way I do them.  If only you practiced the same religious rites and held the same religious beliefs. If only you would dress like me and talk like me and be a good person like me and mine!  And because you are not like me, I will find a way to punish you for being different from me.  Do not punish me for being different from you, for I am the innocent one here and you are the guilty one.  It is not my fault we are different; it is all yours.  I will not look for what makes us the same, what gives us the same purpose for being, what draws us together in laughter and love, and heals the Sonship.  I will make you guilty so I can be innocent.  I will make you strange so that I can be the normal one.  I will laugh at you and mock you for your weirdness, I will find snide things to say about you, I will pick you apart in order for me to gain ground and feel good about myself.

In this frame of mind, my correction of you is only going to separate us because I am going to try to make you see me as the one in which you should strive to be.  This is the function I give myself in this world.  This is my specialness in all its glory.  I am here to correct everyone else.  To make them see me as special and acknowledge my specialness at the expense of their own worth and innocence. 

But Christ did not call me to be sick and add to the sense of separation, sin, and specialness.  Christ’s function is one of healing and restoration.  My identity can only be found in Him and in the wholeness of the Christ Mind.  As long as I am operating from a human perspective I will not know or experience that forgiveness and correction are one thing.  It will always seem that forgiveness is a personal favor we are giving to a sinner and correction is a means to punish the guilty. 

My lower mind based in the flesh realm, operating on ego principles will resist the high Mind of Christ. I will feel split between my holy perceptions and that which opposes holiness.  The focus on the lower mind is always on your sins and how I can correct them by making them your sins and not mine.  I may say vulgar words, express myself in coarse terms, focus on the negative, but these are simply mistakes that are easily overlooked and not noticed by me.  But you are foul-mouthed; you are trash; you are depraved and a depriver of all joy.  While my sins are rather cute and endearing and should, in all fairness not even be remarked upon, your sins deserve punishment, because yours make me sick.  

I will be so busy finding sin in you that I will not realize my own accountability.  You can never be one with me as long as I am finding guilt in you.  You become a symbol of everything I hate and despise.  Your rudeness, your filth, your bad manners become my source of pain and I like it this way because I do not want to be part of any Sonship that would make you any different than the ogre I made you out to be.  Because in this way of thinking, my specialness can only be maintained by your guilt.  I must keep you down for me to rise up. I fear healing. I want punishment for you, not healing.  I would rather be sick and stay sick than see you as innocent, as washed clean, as forgiven.   

This is where our need for a miracle comes in to deliver us from this sad state of sorrow, separation, and illusion.  Jesus gives us an inside view of how it works in paragraph 14.  Holy Spirit overrides our fear of healing by simply waiting it out until we recognize that we cannot be whole without each other.  Holy Spirit does not force us to be one, He allows time and circumstance to bring to our remembrance the love we have for each other.  He gives me and you the same function.  We come to forgiveness.  We stand up to our fear of healing.  We get sick of being sick. I realize that I cannot be without you; you realize that you cannot be without me.  We learn that forgiveness and correction are the same. We realize this as our joint function, something we must share – I cannot be healed without your healing. You cannot be healed without mine.  Here we recognize the beauty, infinite patience, love, and intelligence in Holy Spirit’s devotion to us throughout our ignorant and disgraceful history.  Here we recognize the purpose of time as perceived by Holiness. 

Holy Spirit knows that correction and forgiveness are the same and He holds it in the High Mind of Christ within us.  The lower mind cannot grasp this; it barely grasps the concept of forgiveness. In other words, simply practice your function of forgiveness and give all forms of correction to Holy Spirit.  All of us eventually accept only the High Mind of Christ.  It comes to us with age; it comes to us with experience; it comes to us in many forms but always the same content which is truth because it is Love and Love is God.  And Love cannot be divided but only shared. 

Holy Spirit has one single purpose in unifying the halves of us that we perceive as separate.  As our lower mind gives way to the High Mind of Christ, so does our cherishment of guilt and punishment, martyrdom and sacrifice give way to correction, healing, happiness, to our wholeness as God’s Son.      

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 27 The healing of the dream ii the fear of healing 9-16. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM Chapter 27 II 1-8

1. Is healing frightening? To many, yes. For accusation is a bar to love, and damaged bodies are accusers. They stand firmly in the way of trust and peace, proclaiming that the frail can have no trust and that the damaged have no grounds for peace. Who has been injured by his brother, and could love and trust him still? He has attacked and will attack again. Protect him not, because your damaged body shows that you must be protected from him. To forgive may be an act of charity, but not his due. He may be pitied for his guilt, but not exonerated. And if you forgive him his transgressions, you but add to all the guilt that he has really earned.

2. The unhealed cannot pardon. For they are the witnesses that pardon is unfair. They would retain the consequences of the guilt they overlook. Yet no one can forgive a sin that he believes is real. And what has consequences must be real because what it has done is there to see. Forgiveness is not pity, which but seeks to pardon what it thinks to be the truth. Good cannot be returned for evil, for forgiveness does not first establish sin and then forgive it. Who can say and mean, “My brother, you have injured me, and yet, because I am the better of the two, I pardon you my hurt.”  His pardon and your hurt cannot exist together. One denies the other and must make it false.

3. To witness sin and yet forgive it is a paradox that reason cannot see. For it maintains what has been done to you deserves no pardon. And by giving it, you grant your brother mercy but retain the proof that he is not really innocent. The sick remain accusers. They cannot forgive their brothers and themselves as well. For no one in whom true forgiveness rests can suffer. He holds not the proof of sin before his brother’s eyes. And thus he must have overlooked it and removed it from his own. Forgiveness cannot be for one and not the other.  Who forgives is healed. And in his healing lies the proof that he has truly pardoned and retains no trace of condemnation, but he still would hold against himself or any living thing. 

4. Forgiveness is not real unless it brings a healing to your brother and yourself. You must attest his sins have no effect on you to demonstrate they are not real. How else could he be guiltless? And how could his innocence be justified unless his sins have no effect to warrant guilt? Sins are beyond forgiveness just because they would entail effects that cannot be undone and overlooked entirely. In their undoing lies proof that they are merely errors. Let yourself be healed that you may be forgiving, offering salvation to your brother and yourself.

5. A broken body shows the mind has not been healed. A miracle of healing proves that separation is without effect. What you would prove to him you will believe. The power of witness comes from your belief. And everything you say or do or think but testifies to what you teach to him. Your body can be means to teach that it has never suffered pain because of him. And in its healing can it offer him mute testimony of his innocence. It is this testimony that can speak with power greater than a thousand tongues. For here is his forgiveness proved to him.

6. A miracle can offer nothing less to him than it has given onto you. So does your healing show your mind is healed and has forgiven what he did not do. And so is he convinced his innocence was never lost and healed along with you. Thus does the miracle undo all things the world attests can never be undone. And hopelessness and death must disappear before the ancient clarion call of life. This call has power far beyond the weak and miserable cry of death and guilt. The ancient calling of the Father to His Son, and of the Son on to his own, will yet be the last trumpet that the world will ever hear. Brother, there is no death. And this you learn when you but wished to show your brother that you had no hurt of him. He thinks your blood is on his hands, and so he stands condemned. Yet it is given you to show him, by your healing, that his guilt is but the fabric of a senseless dream.

7. How just are miracles! For they bestow an equal gift of full deliverance from guilt upon your brother and yourself. Your healing saves him pain as well as you, and you are healed because you wished him well. This is the law the miracle obeys, that healing sees no specialness at all. It does not come from pity but from love. And love would prove all suffering is but a vain imagining, a foolish wish with no effects. Your health is a result of your desire to see your brother with no blood upon his hands, nor guilt upon his heart made heavy with the proof of sin. And what you wish is given you to see.

8. The “cost” of your serenity is his. This is the “price” the Holy Spirit and the world interpret differently. The world perceives it as a statement of the “fact” that your salvation sacrifices his. The Holy Spirit knows your healing is the witness unto his and cannot be apart from his at all. As long as he consents to suffer, you will be unhealed. Yet you can show him that his suffering is purposeless and wholly without cause. Show him your healing, and he will consent no more to suffer. For his innocence has been established in your sight and his. And laughter will replace your sins because God’s Son remembered that he is God’s Son.[1]

When someone steals our belongings, and we are without while they reap the benefits of our money, jewels, or retirements savings – my forgiveness toward them cannot be real if I suffer any pangs of poverty, despair, or thoughts of revenge.  As long as I am telling the story of how they stole from me, and how hard it is to scrape by without my treasure, I remain unhealed.  It still hurts!  Any forgiveness that I extend to the would-be thieves is a pretense – because I still believe that what they took from me is of value and I still sting from the loss of what was stolen. 

In estrangements that we have with our loved ones, we blame their pettiness and lies, their hypocrisy and bad manners for breaking up our family, for causing us to miss out on new births and family get-togethers, shared holidays and fun times we were meant to share. We mourn the joys we missed, the sorrows we endured without the support of our loved ones – because of them.  As long as we are thinking along these lines, we are unhealed and in our unhealed state we cannot offer forgiveness.  We can say we forgive, but forgiveness is impossible as long as we are blaming someone or something in particular  for our hurt feelings and our sense of loss. 

We cannot witness sin and forgive it.  We cannot watch our family members die at another’s hand and blithely say, “We must forgive you the murder of my father and my mother, my sister and my brother.”  Doing so, means that I still consider you a murderer, which makes you guilty.  And your guilt and my thinking of you as the culprit of my family’s murder keep us both locked in the realm of separateness and sickness.  There is no real forgiveness and no real justice as long as I see you or you see me as a sinner of any kind.  For when we see with the eyes of Christ, we see innocence.  We see the ongoing dramatic happenings in the perceptual realm as an illusion.  There is no “proof” of sin; there is no evidence that would label you different from me. 

Only those who have accepted this are healed.  And only those who are healed of the illusion can forgive.  And it is only by forgiving the whole realm for its lie, for its trickery, for its opposition to Love, its bloody history, its ongoing attachment to cruelty, injustice, war, and ill will that frees us from the cycles of despair. 

On the personal level, we are assigned to each other to learn and practice true forgiveness and to heal the separateness between us, to bring our consciousness back to oneness, to demonstrate that that sin and the effects of sin have no effect upon us.  How else could we be healed? For if I am still demonstrating that what you did still hurts me, that the things you took from me will forever sadden me, be the subject of my thoughts and conversation, I will be a constant reminder of your sin.  I am not healed, and because I am not healed, you are not healed.  We demonstrate instead our sickness and any forgiveness we try to maintain is fraudulent and cannot fool a Son of God.   We will not be happy with one another and our unhappiness does not witness to our Sonship.

We are to let the idea of sin be removed from our consciousness.  Of course it is not right what happened to you as a child at the hands of the abusive, the bullies, the cruel things that were said and done through out your life that made your home, school, military assignment, college dorm, prison cell, or workplace a place of terror, dreariness, or despair.  There is nothing at all positive that can be said about letting someone get away with a hurtful, mean-spirited, ignorant, and backwoods approach to relationships.  We do not have to find excuses for the unruly behavior of others.  We do not have to turn the other cheek and accept being beat down and held down.  We are not expected to let our voice be drowned by those who would steal our joy, wreck our homes, or make unkind comments about what makes us happy.  There is no justification for those who would sneer at our triumphs and mock our efforts.  But we do not allow these things to sicken us.  We forgive it because we know that the individuals who did this to us are not apart from us.  We are all in the same dream, we suffer the same mass delusion.  As one, what others do to us and what we do to others is a direct result – not of their personal sin – but the wrongfulness of the brokenness between us. 

Our bodies will carry the karmic unforgiven sins of the world as long as we blame each other.  Hold each other accountable for the separation, the wheels of ignorance and unforgiveness churn out thoughts of sinners and saints, victims and victimizers, good and evil, black and white.  And in the perception of opposition and opposites, we find sin, we find guilt, we find blame and shame.  It is not wholesome, it is not nourishing, it makes us sick and it keeps us sick.  For you are innocent as God’s Son and I am innocent as God’s Son and that is who we are and not this other thing that would oppose each other. 

When I forgive my childhood abuses, when I understand that those who abused me meant me no lasting harm; that what was done to me was merely an example of separation, I am healed.  My mind is cleansed of the bewilderment, the questions, the doubts, the hurts, and fears.  My body no longer carries the “evidence” of their hurtful deeds.  I no longer attract or am attracted to others that would use me to project their own ignorance and failures to be decent, loving, and kind.  I am healed.  And because I am healed, they are healed and because they are healed, they are in a position to heal others. 

The power then of our witness comes from teaching these concepts.  We teach these concepts by practicing them, by learning them from each other.  I did not learn this until a dear brother in our ACIM group taught it to me.  Here is mute testimony to the miracle – my body and all my flesh conversations, behaviors, and relationships are a testimony then to my abusers’ innocence, and it is the mute testimony of this miracle that speaks with greater power than a thousand tongues! 

Do not be dismayed in your practice if the ones you are called to forgive have already passed away.  It is never too late for there is no real death.  We communicate with the seeming dead all the time, in our thoughts, in our dreams, and in our daily interactions.  We imprison them in our fake forgiveness, our beliefs in sin, in hell, in punishment, in the unreality of humanity and the perceptual world.  We are one and always will be whether in one form or in another. 

The perceptual world will haunt us with its message of despair.  We waited too long.  It can never be undone.  There is no correction for the sins of the past.  We have to live with the effects of mistakes made in ignorance from one generation to the next. We are doomed by generational curses that keep us bound in poverty, lack of intellect, and low-mindedness.  We are branded not only for this life but for every life to come by the wrongdoing of our ancestors!    

But this misery and hopelessness is not our reality in Christ.  As Son of God, the Father’s Love – the Father’s justice is the last trumpet sound that this world will ever hear.  Let it sound in your inner ear – for we learn this, we recognize this, we accept it, and know it when we wish to show our every brother that they did not hurt us, that what they did means nothing, that it was nothing but an illusion of separation, a means to push us and keep us apart.  The guilt our brothers carry upon them is not our joy, but our burden.  We free them from the guilt, and we are free!

This is the justice of miracles. The “cost” of your serenity is the serenity you wish for all who taught you separateness, who seemed to hurt you, who tried to relieve their sense of guilt and unworthiness by the unkind, unpleasant, ignorant ways they treated you.  This starts out as a personal, highly individualized process until we have gained enough ground for it to be generalized to the whole realm of separation.  We gain ground through our practice.  We learn that the law of miracles must be obeyed – there is no specialness at all in the law.  It does not come from a spiritual superior granting clemency to an inferior.  It does not come from a sense of obligation, reluctance, or pity.  It comes from seeing all suffering as a vain attempt to make itself real, a foolish wish to defy God’s Will of love, peace, and joy, a ridiculous whim to prove that God’s Son can be sickened and die against the Will of the Father. 

Let your health be a witness to your desire to see your brother with no blood on his hands, no guilt in his heart, no proof of sin to weigh upon his shoulders.  For when we wish upon others what is God’s Will for ourselves, we practice the healing of the Sonship, we establish the desire for oneness in our hearts and minds, we begin to see with the eyes of Christ and our faith is strengthened by what we see.  We are not told to have faith and keep on having faith while we suffer and martyr ourselves, work too hard, sicken, and eventually end up in the grave along with everybody else.  This is not God’s Will, for the Father only wishes a happy dream for His Son, and we cannot have a happy dream when we are sick and full of despair believing the dream the dream of separation is our reality. 

The holy Spirit within you, your holy Self knows that your healing is a witness to my healing, that there is no specialness in your healing.  It does not call you out away from me in eclecticism and separateness, but rather testifies to me of what is my own.  I cannot stay sick when you are healed!  I will not be content to hang on to my madness when I see your sanity and your health, when I behold your innocence and hear the purity and joy of laughter that has replaced thoughts of sin, guilt, and servanthood.  When you remember that you are God’s Son, I remember what I am and can be nothing but well.  And only in our wellness, in our happiness, in our beautiful Sonship can we awaken together and go home. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 27 The healing of the dream. ii. the fear of healing 1-8. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM CHAPTER 27 THE HEALING OF THE DREAM I. The Picture of Crucifixion

ACIM Chapter 27. I The Picture of Crucifixion

1. The wish to be unfairly treated is a compromise attempt that would combine attack and innocence. Who can combine the wholly incompatible and make a unity of what can never join? Walk you the gentle way, and you will fear no evil and no shadows in the night. But place no terror symbols on your path, or you will weave a crown of thorns from which your brother and yourself will not escape. You cannot crucify yourself alone. And if you are unfairly treated, he must suffer the unfairness that you see. You cannot sacrifice yourself alone. For sacrifice is total. If it could occur at all it would entail the whole of God’s creation, and the Father with the sacrifice of His beloved Son.

2. And your release from sacrifice is his made manifest and shown to be his own. But every pain you suffer do you see as proof that he is guilty of attack. Thus would you make yourself to be the sign that he has lost his innocence and need but look on you to realize that he has been condemned. And what to you has been unfair will come to him in righteousness. The unjust vengeance that you suffer now belongs to him, and when it rests on him are you set free. Wish not to make yourself a living symbol of his guilt, for you will not escape the death you made for him. But in his innocence you find your own.

3. Whenever you consent to suffer pain, to be deprived, unfairly treated or in need of anything, you but accuse your brother of attack upon God’s Son. You hold a picture of your crucifixion before his eyes, that he may see his sins are writ in Heaven in your blood and death, and go before him, closing off the gate and damning him to hell. Yet this is written in hell and not in Heaven, where you are beyond attack and prove his innocence. The picture of yourself you offer him you show yourself and give it all your faith. The Holy Spirit offers you, to give to him. a picture of yourself in which there is no pain and no reproach at all.  And what was martyred to his guilt becomes the perfect witness to his innocence.

4. The power of witness is beyond belief because it brings conviction in its wake. The witness is believed because he points beyond himself to what he represents. A sick and suffering you but represents your brother’s guilt; the witness that you send lest he forget the injuries he gave, from which you swear he never will escape. This sick and sorry picture you accept, if only it can serve to punish him. The sick are merciless to everyone, and in contagion do they seek to kill. Death seems an easy price, if they can say, “Behold me, brother, at your hand I die.” For sickness is the witness to his guilt, and death would prove his errors must be sins. Sickness is but a “little” death, a form of vengeance not yet total. Yet it speaks with certainty for what it represents. The bleak and bitter picture you have sent your brother you have looked upon in grief. And everything that it has shown to him have you believed, because it witnessed to the guilt in him which you perceived and loved.

5. Now in the hands made gentle by His touch, the Holy Spirit lays a picture of a different you. It is a picture of a body still, for what you really are cannot be seen nor pictured. Yet this one has not been used for purpose of attack, and therefore never suffered pain at all. It witnesses to the eternal truth that you cannot be hurt, and points beyond itself to both your innocence and his. Show this onto your brother, who will see that every scar is healed, and every tear is wiped away in laughter and in love. And he will look on his forgiveness there, and with healed eyes will look beyond it to the innocence that he beholds in you. Here is the proof that he has never sinned, that nothing which his madness bid him do was ever done, or ever had effects of any kind. That no reproach he laid upon his heart was ever justified, and no attack can ever touch him with the poisoned and relentless sting of fear.

6. Attest his innocence and not his guilt. Your healing is his comfort and his health because it proves illusions are not true. It is not will for life but wish for death that is the motivation for this world. Its only purpose is to prove guilt real. No worldly thought or act or feeling has a motivation other than this one. These are the witnesses that are called forth to be believed and lend conviction to the system they speak for and represent. And each has many voices, speaking to your brother and yourself in different tongues. And yet to both the message is the same. Adornment of the body seeks to show how lovely are the witnesses for guilt. Concerns about the body demonstrate how frail and vulnerable is your life; how easily destroyed is what you love. Depression speaks of death, and vanity of real concern with anything at all.

7. The strongest witness to futility, that bolsters all the rest and helps them paint the picture in which sin is justified, is sickness in whatever form it takes. The sick have reason for each one of their unnatural desires and strange needs. For who could live a life so soon cut short and not esteem the worth of passing joys? What pleasures could there be that will endure? Are not the frail entitled to believe that every stolen scrap of pleasure is their righteous payment for their little lives? Their death will pay the price for all of them if they enjoy their benefits or not. The end of life must come whatever way that life be spent. And so take pleasure in the quickly passing and ephemeral.

8. These are not sins but witnesses unto the strange belief that sin and death are real, and innocence and sin will end alike within the termination of the grave. If this were true, there would be reason to remain content to seek for passing joys and cherish little pleasures where you can. Yet in this picture is the body not perceived as neutral and without a goal inherent in itself. For it becomes a symbol of reproach, the sign of guilt whose consequences still are there to see, so that the cause can never be denied.

9. Your function is to show your brother sin can have no cause. How futile must it be to see yourself a picture of the proof that what your function is can never be! The Holy Spirit’s picture changes not the body into something it is not. It only takes away from it all signs of accusation and of blamefulness. Pictured without a purpose, it is seen as neither sick nor well, nor bad nor good. No grounds are offered that it may be judged in any way at all. It has no life, but neither is it dead. Is stands apart from all experience of love or fear. For now it witnesses to nothing yet, its purpose being open, and the mind made free again to choose what it is for. Now is it not condemned, but waiting for a purpose to be given, that it may fulfill the function that it will receive.

10. Into this empty space, from which the goal of sin has been removed, is Heaven free to be remembered. Here its peace can come, and perfect healing take the place of death. The body can become a sign of life, a promise of redemption, a breath of immortality to those grown sick of breathing in the fetid scent of death. Let it have healing as its purpose. Then will it send forth the message it received, and by its health and loveliness proclaim the truth and value that it represents. Let it receive the power to represent an endless life, forever unattacked. And to your brother let its message be, “Behold me, brother, at your hand I live.”

11. The simple way to let this be achieved is merely this; to let the body have no purpose from the past, when you were sure you knew its purpose was to foster guilt. For this insists your crippled picture is a lasting sign of what it represents. This leaves no space in which a different view, another purpose, can be given it. You do not know its purpose. You but gave illusions of a purpose to a thing you made to hide your function from yourself. This thing without a purpose cannot hide the function that the Holy Spirit gave. Let, then, its purpose and your function both be reconciled at last and seen as one.[1]

As humans we have no idea why we have bodies; who or what formed them; why we have the drives and passions, the likes and dislikes that we seem to be born with.  Each child that is born seems to have their own agenda, believing themselves to be the center of the universe, demanding rights and privileges and feeling quite unhappy when their many needs are not met and gratified!  

In today’s devotional text, we learn that in the flesh, our bodies are a testament to guilt.  For from the time we are babies everyone fails us!  Nobody can make us happy all the time.  Nobody can meet our every need.  No matter how doting our parents are, how nice our siblings might be, how caring and thoughtful, kind and patient every single person in our life may be – they simply cannot meet our every need, protect us from every harm, or shelter us from every storm.  And we hold others accountable for our every unhappiness, insecurity, and illness.  All that hurts us, defeats us, and kills us is always someone else’s fault. 

We are to step out of this way of thinking.  The crucifixion is a wrongful symbol of the ways in which we blame one another and hold each other accountable for the unhappiness, for the hurt and pain and suffering of separation.  You can do nothing that will take away my salvation; you can do nothing that will prevent my Sonship; you can do nothing that will stand in the way of my health, holiness, and happiness when you are as Christ to me.

When I no longer have a purpose for my body, Holy Spirit steps in and gives it the only meaningful purpose it can have in this realm.  Look carefully at paragraphs nine and ten and contemplate the purpose of healing.  Our bodies become a symbol of life, redemption, immortality when we release others from guilt and despair. As we accept Holy Spirit, the lowness of finding fault, casting blame, and pointing accusing fingers toward our brothers goes away!  Our bodies become a healthy, lovely organism that proclaims the true and worthy vocation of healing.  Our bodies can represent an endless life forever free from attack of any kind.  Our message is transformed from the low-minded “Look at the hurt, pain, and suffering you have brought to my life,” to the Christ-minded “What happiness, joy, and goodness you bring to me – from your hand I live!” 

We get to this by giving our body no opportunity to linger in the past, no chance to cherish old wounds and seeming betrayals.  My body no longer exists to carry the weight of your guilt and your body no longer exists to carry mine.  We are free from this mean-spirited perception of who and what we are to each other.  It is important that we clarify that there is no purpose for the body outside of the one for healing.  It is just a thing we try to keep gratified and satisfied and hold others accountable for its ongoing needs and wishes.  It grasps unto any little passing pleasure and makes as much of it as it possibly can because that is all it has without the function of healing.  

Staying trapped in a body that serves guilt, doomed for crucifixion, enslaved for lifetime after lifetime to thoughts of sin and guilt with brief respites of vain riches and passing pleasures is simply a way not to heal the Sonship, to remain apart from God and from each other.  Small joys and passing trifles do not satisfy the Son of God. This thing without purpose cannot hide the function Holy Spirit gives, and so we are called to give purpose where there was none. 

Today in your devotional practice, ask Holy Spirit to bring together your lack of purpose in the body by showing you your function in Christ.  We are called out of crucifixion and into resurrection.  While this is an instantaneous happening in Spirit, in time it seems to be drawn out into a process of one step following another.  This does not have to take a long time.  We do not have to wait for years and years for our function to be given us, for our lives in the flesh to have a purpose, for us to have the liberty and freedom of Spirit.  It can happen now, in this present moment as our minds comprehend the concepts that free us from our dedication to guilt, sickness, despair, and death.  Jesus tells us to let this happen by holding no attachment to thoughts of guilt, punishment, blame, and sin from the past. Do not make the mistake of believing there is any justice in punishment, in crucifixion, in sickness, or in death.  We are here to set each other free.  To recognize Christ in each other.  To heal the Sonship.  To be reconciled.  To be one. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 27 The healing of the dream. i. the picture of crucifixion. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM – CHAPTER 26 THE TRANSITION X. The End of Injustice

ACIM CHAPTER 26. X. The End of Injustice

1. What, then, remains to be undone for you to realize Their Presence? Only this, you have a differential view of when attack is justified and when you think it is unfair and not to be allowed. When you perceive it as unfair, you think that a response of anger now is just. And thus you see what is the same as different. Confusion is not limited. If it occurs at all it will be total. And its presence, in whatever form, will hide Their Presence. They are known with clarity or not at all. Confused perception will block knowledge. It is not a question of the size of the confusion or how much it interferes. Its simple presence shuts the door to Theirs and keeps Them there unknown.

2. What does it mean if you perceive attack in certain forms to be unfair to you? It means that there must be some forms in which you think it fair. For otherwise, how could some be evaluated as unfair? Some, then, are given meaning and perceived as sensible. And only some are seen as meaningless. And this denies the fact that all are senseless, equally without a cause or consequence, and cannot have effects of any kind. Their Presence is obscured by any veil that stands between Their shining innocence, and your awareness that it is your own and equally belongs to every living thing along with you. God limits not. And what is limited cannot be Heaven. So it must be hell. 

3. Unfairness and attack are one mistake, so firmly joined that where one is perceived the other must be seen. You cannot be unfairly treated. The belief you are is but another form of the idea you are deprived by someone not yourself. Projection of the cause of sacrifice is at the root of everything perceived to be unfair and not your just deserts. Yet it is you who ask this of yourself, in deep injustice to the Son of God. You have no enemy except yourself, and you are enemy indeed to him because you do not know him as yourself. What could be more unjust than that he be deprived of what he is, denied the right to be himself, and asked to sacrifice his Father’s Love and yours as not his due?

4. Beware the temptation to perceive yourself unfairly treated. In this view, you seek to find an innocence that is not Theirs but yours alone, and at the cost of someone else’s guilt. Can innocence be purchased by the giving of your guilt to someone else? And is it innocence that you attack upon the Son of God you seek? Is it not safer to believe that you are innocent of this, and victimized despite your innocence? Whatever way the game of guilt is played, there must be loss. Someone must lose his innocence that someone else can take it from him, making it his own.

5. You think your brother is unfair to you because you think that one must be unfair to make the other innocent. And in this game do you perceive one purpose for your whole relationship. And this you seek to add unto the purpose given it. The Holy Spirit’s purpose is to let the Presence of your holy Guests be known to you.  And to this purpose nothing can be added, for the world is purposeless except for this. To add or take away from this one goal is but to take away all purpose from the world and from yourself. And each unfairness that the world appears to lay upon you, you have laid on it by rendering it purposeless, without the function that the Holy Spirit sees. And simple justice has been thus denied to every living thing upon the earth.

6. What this injustice does to you who judge unfairly and who see as you have judged, you cannot calculate. The world grows dim and threatening, not a trace of all the happy sparkle that salvation brings can you perceive to lighten up your way. And so you see yourself deprived of light, abandoned to the dark, unfairly left without a purpose in a futile world. The world is fair because the Holy Spirit has brought injustice to the light within, and there has all unfairness been resolved and been replaced with justice and with love. If you perceive injustice anywhere, you need but say:

By this do I deny the Presence of the Father and the Son.

And I would rather know of Them than see injustice, which Their Presence shines away.[1]

The end of injustice starts with me and with you.  We no longer let anything about the world strike us with a sense of hurt, pain, or betrayal. We realize our function in Christ is to forgive and show mercy and we welcome all opportunities to do so.  It can be as mundane as someone we hold near and dear showing themselves to be selfish and uncaring toward children.  It can be the persistent adultery of our father or our mother, our wife, or our husband.  It can be war crimes that nearly wiped out our family lines.  It can be the neighbors who seem to enjoy rubbing their status, wealth, and good fortune in your face.  Childhood abuses, mean teachers, crooked politicians, greed, lust, and corruption – we forgive it all because to not forgive is to fail to recognize our true and holy Selves with Them, the Father and the Son, the holy Sonship and Brotherhood of God Who is with us and for us and is us – now and always.

To embrace truth, we must let go of all that would confuse our perceptions of God’s grace and mercy.  To embrace truth, to make the transition to God’s Kingdom, we must see this realm for what it is and deny its ability to touch the Sonship, to have one effect upon the universal innocence of Creation, to wipe our mind clean of all of the warped programming and instilled doctrines of a realm built upon a lie, built upon fear, and lack and loss.  Such a realm can only be an illusion – an ongoing cycle that thrives upon blame and guilt, sin, and sacrifice.  It is a game that has no winners, offers no hope, and ends in loss for we cannot gain our innocence and purity by taking it away from another.  We cannot get to Heaven on the backs of those who did not make it through. 

In the happy game of salvation, there are only winners.  All pain and sorrow, all the injustice that the world would seem to heap up in piles to make us cry out in dread and terror, the slights and slurs, the cattiness and dogged bitchiness are simply a denial of the Father and the Son. 

In your personal devotional habit today, read over this section carefully and personally apply the concepts to your own life.  What are you finding hard to forgive?  What issues about the world or certain people in the world are you holding in your mind instead of the Father and the Son?  As I search my mind, I realize that all the times I laugh and roll my eyes at James’ ongoing house renovations to others, I am not acknowledging the beautiful gifts that his imagination and loving handiwork has brought into our lives.  All the times I talk about the indignities a loved one put me through as a child, I am not recognizing the purity and innocence, the holiness and love.  And all the ways in which I groom my peevish pets, the ones who do not return phone calls, the ones who chew with their mouth open, the ones who call in the middle of the night just to chatter in my sleepy ears, the ones who complain too much and do too little…To look upon the Father and the Son, I must choose to see only Them.  And when I choose to see only Them, my perception is cleansed and I can see the love, the good, the worthy.  A wonderful healing takes place for I have opened a channel for miracles.

To understand the concepts in this Course, we must not be cavalier!  Of course it is not okay to abuse children, to rape and kill, to be rude and uncaring, selfish, and coarse.  But the past is the past and it cannot be undone by sifting through it for nuggets of guilt, seeking to punish and hold others accountable for the ways in which it hurt us and keeps us trapped in the hellishness of blame and shame.  As humans, we seek our innocence through the guilt of others; as Christ we find our Innocence, our holy Self through the purity and holiness of others.  It is a matter of what we choose to seek and believe about our selves.  It is a matter of being willing to forgive what can only be overlooked to move forward.  For what I hold against you, I hold against myself.  For we are one and this cannot be changed, for this is how God created us. 

Today and always let the Presence of the Father and the Son shine away all the lies and illusions of fear, limits, and injustice that the world would heap upon our consciousness.  Refuse to get caught up in debates, conversations, and gossip that would obscure the holiness and worthiness of others.  Be the one that takes a stand against the low mind, the dimmed wits, and the threatening gloom that would hide the happy sparkle that salvation brings and extends to all. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 26 The transition. X. The end of injustice. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons, visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM CHAPTER 26. IX They Have Come

1. Think but how holy you must be from whom the Voice for God calls lovingly unto your brother, that you may awaken in him the Voice that answers to your call! And think how holy he must be when in him sleeps your own salvation, with his freedom joined! However much you wish he be condemned; God is in him. And never will you know He is in you as well while you attack His chosen home, and battle with His host. Regard him gently. Look with loving eyes on him who carries Christ within him, that you may behold his glory and rejoice that Heaven is not separate from you.

2. Is it too much to ask a little trust for him who carries Christ to you, that you may be forgiven all your sins, and left without a single one you cherish still? Forget not that a shadow held between your brother and yourself obscures the face of Christ and memory of God. And would you trade Them for an ancient hate? The ground whereon you stand is holy ground because of Them Who, standing there with you, have blessed it with Their innocence and peace.

3. The blood of hatred fades to let the grass grow green again, and let the flowers be all white and sparkling in the summer sun. What was a place of death has now become a living temple in a world of light. Because of Them. It is Their Presence which has lifted holiness again to take its ancient place upon an ancient throne. Because of Them have miracles sprung up as grass and flowers on the barren ground that hate had scorched and rendered desolate. What hate has wrought have They undone. And now you stand on ground so holy Heaven leans to join with it and make it like itself. The shadow of an ancient hate has gone, and all the blight and withering have passed forever from the land where They have come.

4. What is a hundred or a thousand years to Them, or tens of thousands? When They come, time’s purpose is fulfilled. What never was passes to nothingness when They have come. What hatred claimed is given up to love, and freedom lights up every living thing and lifts it unto Heaven, where the lights grow ever brighter as each one comes home. The incomplete is made complete again, and Heaven’s joy has been increased because what is its own has been restored to it. The bloodied earth is cleansed, and the insane have shed their garments of insanity to join Them on the ground whereon you stand.

5. Heaven is grateful for this gift of what has been withheld so long. For They have come to gather in Their Own. What has been locked is opened; what was held apart from light is given up, that light may shine on it and leave no space nor distance lingering between the light of Heaven and the world.

6. The holiest of all the spots on earth is where an ancient hatred has become a present love. And They come quickly to the living temple, where a home for Them has been set up. There is no place in Heaven holier. And They come to dwell within the temple offered Them, to be Their resting place as well as yours. What hatred has released to love becomes the brightest light in Heaven’s radiance. And all the lights in Heaven brighter grow, in gratitude for what has been restored.

7. Around you angels hover lovingly, to keep away all darkened thoughts of sin, and keep the light where it has entered in. Your footprints lighten up the world, for where you walk forgiveness gladly goes with you. No one on earth but offers thanks to one who has restored his home and sheltered him from bitter winter and the freezing cold. And shall the Lord of Heaven and His Son give less in gratitude for so much more?

8. Now is the temple of the living God rebuilt as host again to Him by Whom it was created. Where He dwells, His Son dwells with Him, never separate. And They give thanks that They are welcome made at last. Where stood a cross stands now the risen Christ, and ancient scars are healed within His sight. An ancient miracle has come to bless and to replace an ancient enmity that came to kill. In gentle gratitude do God the Father and the Son return to what is Theirs and will forever be. Now is the Holy Spirit’s purpose done. For They have come! For they have come at last! [1]

Let today’s devotional text rest upon your mind. Spend time with each paragraph and let “For They Have Come! For They Have Come At last!” be your heart’s song. Meditate upon the images that the words of Jesus evoke in your mind and relax into the certainty of our everlasting peace and love and joy – the Kingdom where Father and Son are united in all that is pure, right, and good.  Do not be afraid of your holiness, your godliness, your call to arise from your sleep and awaken your brothers.  This is the gentle fulfillment of our Lord’s Prayer, being part of the Kingdom which makes earth Heaven. 

As we learn to trust in each other, we usher in the return of Christ.  For Christ returns to our minds when we trust in each other, when the spaces between us dissolve and disappear in the forgiveness and tender mercy we bestow upon each other.  We become Him as He becomes us, reminding us of our Sonship, restoring our Brotherhood, dissolving our differences, and resolving all that would stand between us.  Today we give Him our little willingness to put down all that would separate us, to lay it aside in our love for Him, for ourselves, and for each other.

Today we overlook all that would make us afraid of each other.  We overlook our misperceptions about each other; the things we fail to understand, the ways in which our human perceptions would convince us we should defend ourselves one against the other.  Today I trust in you, and you trust in me because you carry Christ in you as I carry Christ in me. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 26 The transition. IX. For they have come. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM – CHAPTER 26 THE TRANSITION VIII. The Immediacy of Salvation

ACIM CHAPTER 26:VIII The Immediacy of Salvation

1. The one remaining problem that you have is that you see an interval between the time when you forgive and will receive the benefits of trusting in your brother. This but reflects the little you would keep between you and your brother, that you and he might be a little separate. For time and space are one illusion, which takes different forms. If it has been projected beyond your mind you think of it as time. The nearer it is brought to where it is, the more you think of it in terms of space.

2. There is a distance you would keep apart from your brother, and this space you perceive as time because you still believe you are external to him. This makes trust impossible. And you cannot believe that trust would settle every problem now. Thus do you think it safer to remain a little careful and a little watchful of interests perceived as separate. From this perception you cannot conceive of gaining what forgiveness offers now. The interval you think lies in between the giving and receiving of the gift seems to be one in which you sacrifice and suffer loss. You see eventual salvation, not immediate results.

3. Salvation is immediate. Unless you so perceive it, you will be afraid of it, believing that the risk of loss is great between the time its purpose is made yours and its effects will come to you. In this form is the error still obscured that is the source of fear. Salvation would wipe out the space you see between you still, and let you instantly become as one. And it is here you fear the loss would lie. Do not project this fear to time, for time is not the enemy that you perceive. Time is as neutral as the body is, except in terms of what you see it for. If you would keep a little space between you and your brother still, you then would want a little time in which forgiveness is withheld a little while. And this but makes the interval between the time in which forgiveness is withheld from you and given seem dangerous, with terror justified.

4. Yet space between you and your brother is apparent only in the present, now, and cannot be perceived in future time. No more can it be overlooked except within the present. Future loss is not your fear. But present joining is your dread. Who can feel desolation except now? A future cause as yet has no effects. And therefore must it be that if you fear, there is a present cause. And it is this that needs correction, not a future state.

5. The plans you make for safety all are laid within the future, where you cannot plan. No purpose has been given it as yet, and what will happen has as yet no cause. Who can predict effects without a cause? And who could fear effects unless he thought they had been caused, and judged disastrous now? Belief in sin arouses fear, and like its cause, is looking forward, looking back, but overlooking what is here and now. Yet only here and now its cause must be if its effects already have been judged as fearful. And in overlooking this, is it protected and kept separate from healing. For a miracle is now. It stands already here, in present grace, within the only interval of time that sin and fear have overlooked, but which is all there is to time.

6. The working out of all correction takes no time at all. Yet the acceptance of the working out can seem to take forever. The change of purpose the Holy Spirit brought to your relationship has in it all effects that you will see. They can be looked at now. Why wait till they unfold in time and fear they may not come, although already there? You have been told that everything brings good that comes from God. And yet it seems as if this is not so. Good in disaster’s form is difficult to credit in advance. Nor is there really sense in this idea.

7. Why should the good appear in evil form? And is it not deception if it does? Its cause is here if it appears at all. Why are not its effects apparent, then? Why in the future? And you seek to be content with sighing, and with “reasoning” you do not understand it now but will some day. And then its meaning will be clear. This is not reason, for it is unjust, and clearly hints at punishment until the time of liberation is at hand. Given a change of purpose for the good, there is no reason for an interval in which disaster strikes, to be perceived as “good” some day but now in form of pain. This is a sacrifice of now, which could not be the cost the Holy Spirit asks for what He gave without a cost at all.

8. Yet this illusion has a cause which, though untrue, must be already in your mind. And this illusion is but one effect that it engenders, and one form in which its outcome is perceived. This interval in time, when retribution is perceived to be the form in which the “good” appears, is but one aspect of the little space that lies between you, unforgiven still.

9. Be not content with future happiness. It has no meaning and is not your just reward. For you have cause for freedom now. What profits freedom in a prisoner’s form? Why should deliverance be disguised as death? Delay is senseless, and the “reasoning” that would maintain effects of present cause must be delayed until a future time, is merely a denial of the fact that consequence and cause must come as one. Look not to time, but to the little space between you still, to be delivered from. And do not let it be disguised as time, and so preserved because its form is changed and what it is cannot be recognized. The Holy Spirit’s purpose now is yours. Should not His happiness be yours as well?[1]

In today’s devotional text, Jesus instructs us not to allow the concepts of time and space to interfere with our present moments.  When I offer forgiveness to you, it may seem like days, months, possibly years go by before our healing takes place.  But it is not a sentence of time that we must suffer before we are healed.  The miracle is for now.  God is not one to withhold His blessings from us and dangle them in front of our noses and make promises for our future.  There would be no logic to this because the future, like the past, does not exist.  All we have is now. 

When I offer forgiveness to you, it is a given.  It is complete.  There is nothing you can do to reject it because we are one. There is no sense of delay in which I must suffer and wait for you to come back into my life and for us to be brothers again.  You are and ever will be as one with me in Christ.  It is not time that stands between us, it is the little space of separation that would keep you from my embrace.  

All that we have ever experienced is in the past.  We cannot go there to fix our problems because it is over.  And the future is not here yet and so it is silly for us to think that sometime down the line, you and I are going to work out our differences and forgive each other’s wrongdoing and get back together again.  Time is not against our healing, it is the space between us – the fact that I still think of you as different than me, I fail to see you as one with me.  I forgive you, but …

We can complete that sentence in many forms.  We can say, “I forgive you, but you better never pull a trick like that again!”  “I forgive you, but that doesn’t mean I will ever trust you with my secrets again!” “I forgive you, but why don’t you grow up and tell me what your problems with me are instead of gossiping and making up stories to turn everyone against me?”  While the spaces we keep between those we think we have forgiven can take different forms and seem justified in the world of perception – as long as I see a space between us at all, I fail to see our oneness.  I am making the separation real.  I am putting myself in a different realm than you and when I see myself in one realm and you see yourself in another, both of us are still in need of salvation. 

For salvation is immediate.  This simply means that we can only be saved when we give up the space between us.  How do I give up the space between me and the ones in which I seek forgiveness and offer forgiveness?  I see us as one and because I see us as one, when I accept forgiveness for myself –I give as I receive.  There is no space between us in oneness.  My forgiveness is your forgiveness.  I do not have to call you on the phone and beg for your mercy for the past – it is over.  You do not have to call me and ask me to forgive you.  While a simple acknowledgment of our joint humanity and the ways in which we have failed each other is not out of line, our oneness transcends our humanity.  Our oneness is our reality. When we trust in our oneness, there is no space between us anymore. When we trust in our oneness, we do not have to wade through time hoping for a better, more congenial future. We can have it now, because now is the only time there is. 

In your devotional practice today, read over this text carefully and prayerfully.  If there are relationships in your life which seem to be taking time to heal, if you are looking forward to a better future when your prayers will be answered and your relationships will be healed, ask Holy Spirit to show you the spaces that you are keeping between yourself and the ones whom you are called to forgive.  Do not mistake the spaces as a physical state but rather the spaces in your thoughts that you reserve for those whom you have failed, disappointed, or harmed in any way or those who seem to have failed, disappointed, or harmed you.  We cannot see ourselves as one as long as we accept or project any form of attack, insult, or rejection from or upon others.  We are all in this together.  There are no particulars; there are no exceptional cases; the world I spy with my little flesh eye is no more and no less an illusion than the world you spy with your little flesh eye.  Our forgiveness is our denial of that illusion.  Our forgiveness erases the spaces between us.  My forgiveness is your forgiveness and our happiness starts now.  

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 26 The transition. VIII. The immediacy of salvation. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM – CHAPTER 26 THE TRANSITION VII. The Laws of Healing 11-20


11. What is the Will of God? He wills His Son have everything. And this He guaranteed when He created him as everything. It is impossible that anything be lost if what you have is what you are. This is a miracle by which creation became your function, sharing it with God. It is not understood apart from Him, and therefore has no meaning in this world. Here does the Son of God ask not too much, but far too little. He would sacrifice his own identity with everything, to find a little treasure of his own. And this he cannot do without a sense of isolation, loss, and loneliness. This is the treasure he has sought to find. And he could only be afraid of it. Is fear a treasure? Can uncertainty be what you want? Or is it a mistake about your will, and what you really are?

12. Let us consider what the error is, so it can be corrected, not protected. Sin is belief attack can be projected outside the mind where the belief arose. Here is the firm conviction that ideas can leave their source made real and meaningful. And from this error does the world of sin and sacrifice arise. This world is an attempt to prove your innocence, while cherishing attack. Its failure lies in that you still feel guilty, though without understanding why. Effects are seen as separate from their source and seem to be beyond you to control or to prevent. What is thus kept apart can never join.

13. Cause and effect are one, not separate. God wills you learn what always has been true: that He created you as part of Him, and this must still be true because ideas leave not their source. Such is creation’s law; that each idea the mind conceives but adds to its abundance, never takes away. This is as true of what is idly wished as what is truly willed because the mind can wish to be deceived but cannot make it be what it is not. And to believe ideas can leave their source is to invite illusions to be true, without success. For never will success be possible in trying to deceive the Son of God.

14. The miracle is possible when cause and consequences are brought together, not kept separate. The healing of effect without the cause can merely shift effects to other forms. And this is not release. God’s Son could never be content with less than full salvation and escape from guilt. For otherwise he still demands that he must make some sacrifice, and thus denies that everything is his, unlimited by loss of any kind. A tiny sacrifice is just the same in its effects as is the whole idea of sacrifice. If loss in any form is possible, then is God’s Son made incomplete and not himself. Nor will he know himself, nor recognize his will. He has forsworn his Father and himself and made them both his enemies in hate.

15. Illusions serve the purpose they were made to serve. And from their purpose they derive whatever meaning that they seem to have. God gave to all illusions that were made another purpose that would justify a miracle whatever form they took. In every miracle all healing lies, for God gave answer to them all as one. And what is one to him must be the same. If you believe what is the same is different you but deceive yourself. What God calls one will be forever one, not separate. His Kingdom is united; thus it was created, and thus will it ever be.

16. The miracle but calls your ancient name, which you will recognize because the truth is in your memory. And to this name your brother calls for his release and yours. Heaven is shining on the Son of God. Deny him not, that you may be released. Each instant is the Son of God reborn until he chooses not to die again, in every wish to hurt he chooses death instead of what his Father wills for him. Yet every instant offers life to him because his Father wills he should live.

17. In crucifixion is redemption laid, for healing is not needed where there is no pain or suffering. Forgiveness is the answer to attack of any kind. So is attack deprived of its effects, and hate is answered in the name of love. To you to whom it has been given to save the Son of God from crucifixion and from hell and death, all glory be forever. For you have power to save the Son of God because His Father willed it be so. And in your hands does all salvation lie, to be both offered and received as one.

18. To use the power God has given you as He would have it used is natural. It is not arrogant to be as He created you, nor to make use of what He gave to answer all His Son’s mistakes and set him free. But it is arrogant to lay aside the power that He gave and choose a little senseless wish instead of what He wills. The gift of God to you is limitless. There is no circumstance it cannot answer, and no problem which is not resolved within its gracious light.

19. Abide in peace where God would have you be. And be the means whereby your brother finds the peace in which your wishes are fulfilled. Let us unite in bringing blessing to the world of sin and death. For what can save each one of us can save us all. There is no difference among the Sons of God. The unity that specialness denies will save them all, for what is one can have no specialness. And everything belongs to each of them. No wishes lie between a brother and his own. To get from one is to deprive them all. And yet to bless but one gives blessing to them all as one.

20. Your ancient name belongs to everyone, as theirs to you. Call on your brother’s name and God will answer, for on Him you call. Could He refuse to answer when He has already answered all who call on Him? A miracle can make no change at all. But it can make what always has been true be recognized by those who know it not; and by this little gift of truth but let to be itself, the Son of God allowed to be himself, and all creation freed to call upon the Name of God as one.[1]

Christhood calls us to abide in peace.  Our brothers find their peace in the peace we extend to them. I cannot do this without you, and you cannot do this without me, but when we unite we answer every sorrow with joy, every curse with blessing, every sin with correction, and every murder with life.  What saves you, saves me. For you live for me and I live for you and when we bless each other or we curse each other, we bring our wish upon all.

Our name is ancient, but it is not legion.  It is one with God and with all.  In reality, a miracle makes no change at all except to make our inseparability real to us once more.  Reality has never changed, but those who dream and who are seduced by the world of opposites and opposition, of the spaces and the outlines between all that is, of thoughts of sin and separateness – need a miracle, an awakening, a little gift of truth.  We are the Christ, the Son of God.  Not many, but one.  Not warring splinters encased in flesh, blood, and bones, vying for special treatment and consideration, but one peaceful, joyful entity calling upon the Father as Son. 

In your personal devotional practice, ask Holy Spirit to make this real to you so that you can put these laws of healing to work in your life and in the life of those you love.  Pray for oneness and unity.  Refuse to join in attacks of any kind, no matter how justified these attacks may seem to your ego’s perception. Recognize that without accepting Christhood, we arrogantly attempt to find meaning in what has no meaning.  We build walls that keep us apart instead of bringing us together.  We spend our lives in pursuit of a past that never was except in our imagination, piecing together scraps of perception, which cannot by their very nature give us the complete picture.  For the past only reveals to us what did not work to set us free.  It serves as an example of what not to do if we want to have and be joy, peace, and love – forever. 

Do not allow the lower mind of the world to deceive you into thinking that these ideas are too idealistic and lofty, childish in their hope and belief in a reality that transcends the world of opposition and opposites.  Reach for the High Mind of Christ, ask for truth and if you must look at the past, look at it with the objective of recognizing (and forgiving) its fruitless futility and using it to teach us, by contrast, what is right, true, and correct.  For there is only one truth and one reality and we all share it – whatever that may be.  

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 26 The transition. VII. The laws of healing. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


1. This is a course in miracles. As such, the laws of healing must be understood before the purpose of the course can be accomplished. Let us review the principles that we have covered and arrange them in a way that summarizes all that must occur for healing to be possible. For when it once is possible it must occur.

2. All sickness comes from separation. When the separation is denied, it goes. For it is gone as soon as the idea that brought it has been healed and been replaced by sanity. Sickness and sin are seen as consequence and cause, in a relationship kept hidden from awareness that it may be carefully preserved from reason’s light.

3. Guilt asks for punishment, and its request is granted. Not in truth, but in the world of shadows and illusions built on sand. The Son of God perceived what he would see because perception is a wish fulfilled. Perception changes, made to take the place of changeless knowledge. Yet is truth unchanged. It cannot be perceived, but only known. What is perceived takes many forms, but none has meaning. Brought to truth, its senselessness is quite apparent. Kept apart from truth, it seems to have a meaning and be real.

4. Perception’s laws are opposite to truth, and what is true of knowledge is not true of anything that is apart from it. Yet has God given answer to the world of sickness, which applies to all its forms. God’s answer is eternal, though it works in time, where it is needed. Yet because it is of God, the laws of time do not affect its workings. It is in this world, but not a part of it. For it is real, and dwells where all reality must be. Ideas leave not their source, and their effects but seem to be apart from them. Ideas are of the mind. What is projected out, and seems to be external to the mind, is not outside at all, but an effect of what is in, and has not left its source.

5. God’s answer lies where the belief in sin must be, for only there can its effects be utterly undone and without cause. Perception’s laws must be reversed because they are reversals of the laws of truth. The laws of truth forever will be true and cannot be reversed; yet can be seen as upside down. And this must be corrected where the illusion of reversal lies.

6. It is impossible that one illusion be less amenable to truth than are the rest. But it is possible that some are given greater value, and less willingly offered to truth for healing and for help. No illusion has any truth in it. Yet it appears some are more true than others, although this clearly makes no sense at all. All that hierarchy of illusions can show is preference, not reality. What relevance has preference to the truth? Illusions are illusions and are false. Your preference gives them no reality. Not one is true in any way, and all must yield with equal ease to what God gave as answer to them all. God’s Will is one. And any wish that seems to go against His Will has no foundation in the truth.

7. Sin is not error, for it goes beyond correction to impossibility. Yet the belief that it is real has made some errors seem forever past the hope of healing, and the lasting grounds for hell. If this were so, would Heaven be opposed by its own opposite, as real as it. Then would God’s Will be split in two, and all creation be subjected to the laws of two opposing powers, until God becomes impatient, splits the world apart, and relegates attack unto Himself. Thus has He lost his mind, proclaiming sin has taken His reality from Him and brought His Love at last to vengeance’s heels. For such an insane picture an insane defense can be expected but cannot establish that the picture must be true.

8. Nothing gives meaning where no meaning is. And truth needs no defense to make it true. Illusions have no witnesses and no effects. Who looks on them is but deceived. Forgiveness is the only function here and serves to bring the joy this world denies to every aspect of God’s Son where sin was thought to rule. Perhaps you do not see the role forgiveness plays in ending death and all beliefs that arise from mists of guilt. Sins are beliefs that you impose between your brother and yourself. They limit you to time and place, and give a little space to you, another little space to him. This separating off is symbolized, in your perception, by a body which is clearly separate and a thing apart. Yet what this symbol represents is but your wish to be apart and separate.

9. Forgiveness takes away what stands between your brother and yourself. It is the wish that you be joined with him, and not apart. We call it “wish” because it still conceives of other choices and has not yet reached beyond the world of choice entirely. Yet is this wish in line with Heaven’s state, and not in opposition to God’s Will. Although it falls far short of giving you your full inheritance, it does remove the obstacles that you have placed between the heaven where you are, and recognition of where and what you are. Facts are unchanged. Yet facts can be denied and thus unknown, though they were known before they were denied.

10. Salvation, perfect and complete, asks but a little wish that what is true be true, a little willingness to overlook what is not there; a little sigh that speaks for Heaven as a preference to this world that death and desolation seem to rule. In joyous answer will creation rise within you, to replace the world you see with Heaven, wholly perfect and complete. What is forgiveness but a willingness that truth be true? What can remain unhealed and broken from a unity which holds all things within itself? There is no sin. And every miracle is possible the instant that the Son of God perceives his wishes, and the will of God are one.[1]

In my devotional practice today I underlined the laws of healing found in the first ten paragraphs of today’s text.  I list them below so that you, too, may benefit from reviewing the laws of healing in your own devotional habit.

  1. All sickness comes from separation.
  2. Guilt asks for punishment, and its request is granted. Not in truth, but in the world of shadows and illusions built on sand.
  3. Perception’s laws are opposite to truth, and what is true of knowledge is not true of anything that is apart from it.
  4. God’s answer lies where the belief in sin must be, for only there can its effects be utterly undone and without cause.
  5. No illusion has any truth in it.  God’s Will is one. And any wish that seems to go against His Will has no foundation in the truth.
  6. Sin is not error, for it goes beyond correction to impossibility.  There is no sin.
  7. Nothing gives meaning where no meaning is. And truth needs no defense to make it true.
  8. Forgiveness takes away what stands between your brother and yourself.
  9. And every miracle is possible the instant that the Son of God perceives his wishes and the will of God are one.

When we deny our separation from God, when we put aside our idolatry to the perceptual world of images, opposites, and opposition – the untruth that sickens us disappear.  Sanity is restored to our troubled minds.  There is no longer anything that relates to sickness and sin in the light of reason and truth. 

Perception is a wish fulfilled; it is changeable and uncertain and can never be trusted.  In a world of shifting sands fortunes can be made one day and leave us broke and penniless the next.  But the riches of truth last forever.  While we cannot take truth to the store and buy ourselves things in which to nourish or bedeck our flesh, when we know truth, the illusion becomes so apparent that we cannot invest our interest in the things that would hold us fast to pointlessness which takes us nowhere. 

Let us forgive the perceptual world that would keep us apart.  Let us forgive all that would deny our divinity and unity as God’s Son!  For when I forgive what keeps us apart, I am wishing for all that would heal us and bring us together.  I am consciously and with purposeful deliberation choosing the Will of God and acknowledging that my will and His Will are one.  As long as I harbor ill-will and blame and grudge against you, I am making the perceptual world real, I am trusting in my insane, upside-down, oppositional ego-self rather than the Christ within me.  I am not only pushing you away, but I am keeping myself outside the Kingdom.  In other words, I am denying the miracle of God’s Grace.  I can be nothing but sick in this realm of not loving you, and you are sick without me.

To be healed we must wish for oneness.  This is our salvation for only in our oneness can we awaken from the shadowy dream of separateness and sin.  When I make a little wish for oneness for you and me, I am warming to the Will of God.  My cold, stony heart is melting, my long-standing grudges are evaporating into the mists of the past where they belong, my lower mind gives way to the Higher Mind of Christ.  I have accepted the mercy and grace of God and now all I can do is to offer it to you, even as you offer it to me.

There is no sin that can stand between us when all we wish for is that truth be true, and we are one again.  This is the law of healing for every miracle is possible when we recognize that what we want and what God Wills are the same! 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 26 The transition. VII The laws of healing 1-10. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons, visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM-CHAPTER 26. VI The Appointed Friend

1. Anything in this world that you believe is good and valuable and worth striving for can hurt you and will do so. Not because it has the power to hurt, but just because you have denied it is but an illusion and made it real. And it is real to you. It is not nothing. And through its perceived reality has entered all the world of sick illusions. All belief in sin, in power of attack, in hurt and harm, in sacrifice and death, has come to you. For no one can make one illusion real and still escape the rest. For who can choose to keep the ones that he prefers, and find the safety that the truth alone can give? Who can believe illusions are the same, and still maintain that even one is best?

2. Lead not your little life in solitude, with one illusion as your only friend. This is no friendship worthy of God’s Son, nor one with which he could remain content. Yet God has given him a better Friend, in Whom all power in earth and heaven rests. The one illusion that you think is friend obscures His grace and majesty from you and keeps His friendship and forgiveness from your welcoming embrace. Without Him you are friendless. Seek not another friend to take His place. There is no other friend. What God appointed has no substitute, for what illusion can replace the truth?

3. Who dwells with shadows is alone indeed, and loneliness is not the will of God. Would you allow one shadow to usurp the throne that God appointed for your Friend, if you but realized its emptiness has left yours empty and unoccupied? Make no illusion friend, for if you do, it can but take the place of Him whom God has called your Friend. And it is He who is your only Friend in truth. He brings you gifts that are not of this world, and only He to Whom they have been given can make sure that you receive them. He will place them on your throne when you make room for Him on His.[1]

When we live in a mind that is constantly being bombarded by the perceptual world to have an opinion about this and quarrel with others who hold an opposing view, when our mind dwells upon hurts and betrayals and snubs that are long since past, when we hold on to ancient hatreds passed down from previous generations and mean-spirited versions of God that have kept us bound to meaningless rites, rituals, and unholy practices that promote murder and bloodshed and sacrifice – we dwell in shadows.  We are blighted and lead lives that cannot enjoy Creation for we must be wary and alert to the dangers that creation pose to us and ours.  This is not God’s Will for His Creation. 

Do not make these shadows your friends, for we have a Friend in Holy Spirit who dwells within us and unites us all in tender mercy and gentle kindness.  The world we see with our flesh eyes is but a passing dream of all that would be if it were possible to oppose God’s Will and put enmity in place of Love.  Holy Spirit is our only Friend in truth for He unites us all and shines the light of forgiveness upon the perceptual world which can and will always hurt us if we call it friend.  Holy Spirit sees past our little separate worlds and brings us gifts that awaken us and place us on the throne we share together, equally and without rank and rancor.  

When we put Holiness on the throne, we say goodbye to our idols of perception.  You are far more than a friend to me for Holy Spirit as my Friend has brought us together in such a way that we will never be apart again.  There will be no spite between us – for you will know me and I will know you as we know our Selves as Christ is in us, and of us, and is us.  We cannot understand this Oneness without Holiness, for without Holiness we would shudder at such a concept and cling to perceptions of separateness, sin, and shame that seem to fill the spaces and outlines between us. 

In your daily devotion, consciously practice relying upon Holiness to be your only Friend and Guide. This is a deliberate decision and requires a moment-by-moment practice that draws us ever closer to our throne as Sons of God.  While it seems an individual practice in the realm of separateness, we are each drawing from the same Source, you in your dream and me in mine.  When we go to the same Source, we receive the same gifts, the same guidance, the same call to mercy and grace in our daily dealings with one another as we warm to the idea of the oneness and unity that is the Kingdom of God.  These practices prepare our mind for getting past the enchantment of the perceptual world, where I want things my way even if it conflicts with the way you want things your way!  Relying on our Holiness removes the idolatry we practice when we cherish our separate perceptions and believe them to be trustworthy and true even though they divide us and keep us apart. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 26 The transition. VI. The appointed friend. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM – CHAPTER 26 THE TRANSITION V. The Little Hindrance

ACIM – Chapter 26:V The Little Hindrance

1. A little hindrance can seem large indeed to those who do not understand that miracles are all the same. Yet teaching that is what this course is for. This is its only purpose, for only that is all there is to learn. And you can learn it in many different ways. All learning is a help or hindrance to the gate of Heaven. Nothing in between is possible. There are two teachers only, who point in different ways. And you will go along the way your chosen teacher leads. There are but two directions you can take, while time remains, and choice is meaningful. For never will another road be made except the way to Heaven. You but choose whether to go toward Heaven, or away to nowhere. There is nothing else to choose.

2. Nothing is ever lost but time, which in the end is meaningless. For it is but a little hindrance to eternity, quite meaningless to the real Teacher of the world. Yet since you do believe in it, why should you waste it going nowhere, when it can be used to reach a goal as high as learning can achieve? Think not the way to Heaven’s gate is difficult at all. Nothing you undertake with certain purpose and high resolve and happy confidence, holding your brother’s hand and keeping step to Heaven song, is difficult to do. But it is hard indeed to wander off, alone and miserable, down a road that leads to nothing and that has no purpose.

3. God gave His Teacher to replace the one you made, not to conflict with it. And what He would replace has been replaced. Time lasted but an instant in your mind, with no effect upon eternity. And so is all time passed, and everything exactly as it was before the way to nothingness was made. The tiny tick of time in which the first mistake was made, and all of them within that one mistake, held also the correction for that one, and all of them that came within the first. And in that tiny instant time was gone, for that was all it ever was. What God gave answer to is answered and is gone.

4. To you who still believe you live in time and know not it is gone, the Holy Spirit still guides you through the infinitely small and senseless maze you still perceive in time, though it has long since gone. You think you live in what is past. Each thing you look upon you saw but for an instant, long ago, before its unreality gave way to truth. Not one illusion still remains unanswered in your mind. Uncertainty was brought to certainty so long ago that it is hard indeed to hold it in your heart, as if it were before you still.

5. The tiny instant you would keep and make eternal, passed away in Heaven too soon for anything to notice it had come. What disappeared too quickly to affect the simple knowledge of the Son of God can hardly still be there, for you to choose to be your teacher. Only in the past, – an ancient past, too short to make a world an answer to creation, – did this world appear to rise. So very long ago, for such a tiny interval of time, that not one note in Heaven’s song was missed. Yet in each unforgiving act or thought, in every judgment and in all belief in sin, is that one instance still called back, as if it could be made again in time. You keep an ancient memory before your eyes. And he who lives in memories alone is unaware of where he is.

6. Forgiveness is the great release from time. It is the key to learning that the past is over. Madness speaks no more. There is no other teacher and no other way. For what has been undone no longer is. And who can stand upon a distant shore, and dream himself across an ocean, to a place and time that have long since gone by? How real a hindrance can this dream be to where he really is? For this is fact and does not change whatever dreams he has. Yet can he still imagine he is elsewhere, and in another time. In the extreme, he can delude himself that this is true, and pass from mere imagining into belief and into madness, quite convinced that where he would prefer to be, he is.

7. Is this a hindrance to the place whereon he stands? Is any echo from the past that he may hear a fact and what is there to hear where he is now? And how much can his own illusions about time and place effect a change in where he really is?

8. The unforgiven is a voice that calls from out a past forever more gone by. And everything that points to it as real is but a wish that what is gone could be made real again and seen as here and now, in place of what is really now and here. Is this a hindrance to the truth the past is gone, and cannot be returned to you? And do you want that fearful instant kept, when Heaven seemed to disappear, and God was feared and made a symbol of your hate?

9. Forget the time of terror that has been so long ago corrected and undone. Can sin withstand the Will of God? Can it be up to you to see the past and put it in the present? You can not go back. And everything that points the way in the direction of the past but sets you on a mission whose accomplishment can only be unreal. Such is the justice your All-Loving Father has ensured must come to you. And from your own unfairness to yourself has He protected you. You cannot lose your way because there is no way but His, and nowhere can you go except to Him.

10. Would God allow His Son to lose his way along a road long since a memory of time gone by? This course will teach you only what is now. A dreadful instant in a distant past, now perfectly corrected, is of no concern or value. Let the dead and gone be peacefully forgotten. Resurrection has come to take its place. And now you are a part of resurrection, not of death. No past illusions have the power to keep you in a place of death, a vault God’s Son entered an instant, to be instantly restored unto his Father’s perfect Love. And how can he be kept in chains long since removed and gone forever from his mind?

11. The Son whom God created is as free as God created him. He was reborn the instant that he chose to die instead of live. And will you not forgive him now, because he made an error in the past that God remembers not, and is not there? Now you are shifting back and forth between the past and present. Sometimes the past seems real, as if it were the present. Voices from the past are heard and then are doubted. You are like to one who still hallucinates but lacks conviction in what he perceives. This is the borderland between the worlds, the bridge between the past and present. Here the shadow of the past remains, but still a present light is dimly recognized. Once it is seen, this light can never be forgotten. It must draw you from the past into the present, where you really are.

12. The shadow voices do not change the laws of time nor of eternity. They come from what is past and gone and hinder not the true existence of the here and now. The real world is the second part of the hallucination time and death are real and have existence that can be perceived. This terrible illusion was denied in but the time it took for God to give His Answer to illusion for all time and every circumstance. And then it was no more to be experienced as there.

13. Each day, and every minute in each day, and every instant that each minute holds, you but relive the single instant when the time of terror took the place of love. And so you die each day to live again, until you cross the gap between the past and present, which is not a gap at all. Such is each life; a seeming interval from birth to death and on to life again, a repetition of an instant gone by long ago that cannot be relived. And all of time is but the mad belief that what is over is still here and now.

14. Forgive the past and let it go, for it is gone. You stand no longer on the ground that lies between the worlds. You have gone on and reached the world that lies at Heaven’s gate. There is no hindrance to the Will of God, nor any need that you repeat again a journey that was over long ago. Look gently on your brother and behold the world in which perception of your hate has been transformed into a world of love.[1]

Nothing we have ever done can withstand the Will of God.  The past is over; it is already made right.  We cannot ever go back and make it right on our own.  Invent a time machine and go back if you will but any of your accomplishments of meddling in the past will be unreal.  You cannot save your ancestors; you cannot make your parents lives more pleasant and easeful; you cannot get even with all your childhood bullies – for none of it will ever be real.  Change the story anyway you can it will still mean nothing.  This is the most loving way we can view the past – for this is the justice of our loving Father.  He does not want us digging about in it, sobbing in repentance of our ignorance and personal failings, He wants us to come Home and forget about it for it is already done and over for we learned that there is nothing outside the Love of God. 

We cannot lose our way for the only way is His Way.  There can be no place outside His Reality. 

When we learn this, the purpose of our Course has been accomplished.  That dreadful instant in a distant past has already been corrected.  It no longer has any value.  Let the dead and gone rest in peace!  Resurrection has come; be part of that.  Do not let the memory of sin and shame hold you in a vault of sorrow and eternal repentance, for we are restored to our Father’s love.  We are Home where we belong.  It is not a place for sad sacks and whiners, grovelers and pleaders.  We do not sit at the feast and tell stories of all the times we went hungry and bemoan when our cupboards were bare!  We do not sleep in our soft beds and our cushiony pillows and dream of hard cots and straw pads.  We do not enter into fellowship by finding fault, vying for the best seat in the house, bragging about all our contributions and popularity.  These are chains that would keep us bound to time, repeating the weary cycles, driving us mad with our ridiculous posturing. 

We are free of all that for we were created to be free.  To choose to be special is to bind us to physicality, to time, to separation and to the shame of never living up to our potential.  I forgive you all of that because I accepted forgiveness for myself.  God holds no memory of this in His Mind for His Son.  His justice toward us is Love.  It is not recalled again to torment us and drive us to serve Him. For servants cannot love their masters, no matter how kind and good.  Love is only found in equality, and equality is only found in Sonship for God loves His Creations as Sons and not servants. 

And yet here we are still in time and while it seems less real to us, we shift back and forth, hearing voices from the past.  Memories come up. I woke up this morning thinking of the shame and humiliation of abuses from my childhood and realizing it was over and done with and there is nobody to hate, nobody to blame, nobody to hold accountable.  I am still hallucinating but now the hallucinations do not hurt me or cause me pain for I realize it is only a perception and part of the nightmare of separation and sin. 

Jesus says that this is the borderland between the worlds, the bridge between the past and present where the shadow still remains from the past, but the light of Heaven is seen and will never be forgotten.  And it is this light which draws us and keeps us in the present where we are at Home in God. 

Because nothing about the past hinders the true existence of the here and now. 

The time of terror is over.  We do not have to relive it any longer.  We cross the gap between the past and the glory of the present moment the moment we get over our insane desire to keep the past alive, to glory in it, to call bloodshed and lust for war and vengeance, greed and hate by any other name.  We will never find our glory in the past.  Forgive the past; let it go for it is finished.  We can move on past that little mistake, that little blip when we thought that arrogance was the proper response to our glorious Sonship; when we thought that the created could and should be more than the Creator of all.  Christ calls to us in gentleness so that we may have the courage to be gentle with one another.  When we consciously choose to offer tender mercy toward others in our love for God and in our acceptance of Sonship, we reach for the Vision of Christ.  We welcome God’s Will.  We stop repeating a journey that was over a long time ago!   

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 26 The transition. V. The little hindrance. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons, visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit: 

comment 0


ACIM – CHAPTER 26:IV Where Sin Has Left

1. Forgiveness is this world’s equivalent of Heaven’s justice. It translates the world of sin into a simple world, where justice can be reflected from beyond the gate behind which total lack of limits lies. Nothing in boundless love could need forgiveness. And what is charity within the world gives way to simple justice past the gate that opens into Heaven. No one forgives unless he has believed in sin, and still believes that he has much to be forgiven. Forgiveness thus becomes the means by which he learns he has done nothing to forgive. Forgiveness always rests upon the one who offers it, until he sees himself as needing it no more. And thus is he returned to his real function of creating, which his forgiveness offers him again.

2. Forgiveness turns the world of sin into a world of glory, wonderful to see. Each flower shines in light, and every bird sings of the joy of Heaven. There is no sadness and there is no parting here, for everything is totally forgiven. And what has been forgiven must join, for nothing stands between to keep them separate and apart. The sinless must perceive that they are one, for nothing stands between to push the other off. And in the space that sin left vacant do they join as one, in gladness recognizing what is part of them has not been kept apart and separate.

3. The holy place on which you stand is but the space that sin has left. And here you see the face of Christ, arising in its place. Who could behold the face of Christ and not recall his Father as He really is? Who could fear love, and stand upon the ground where sin has left a place for Heaven’s altar to rise and tower far above the world and reach beyond the universe to touch the Heart of all creation? What is Heaven but a song of gratitude and love and praise by everything created to the Source of its creation? The holiest of altars is set where once sin was believed to be. And here does every light of Heaven come, to be rekindled and increased in joy. For here is what was lost restored to them, and all their radiance made whole again.

4. Forgiveness brings no little miracles to lay before the gate of Heaven. Here the Son of God Himself comes to receive each gift that brings him nearer to his home. Not one is lost, and none is cherished more than any other. Each reminds him of his Father’s Love as surely as the rest. And each one teaches him that what he feared he loves the most. What but a miracle could change his mind, so that he understands that love cannot be feared? What other miracle is there but this? And what else need there be to make the space between you disappear?

5. Where sin once was perceived will rise a world that will become an altar to the truth, and you will join the lights of Heaven there, and sing their song of gratitude and praise. And as they come to you to be complete, so will you go with them. For no one hears the song of Heaven and remains without a voice that adds to its power to the song and makes it sweeter still. And each one joins the singing at the altar that was raised within the tiny spot that sin proclaimed to be its own. And what was tiny then has soared into a magnitude of song in which the universe has joined with but a single voice.

6. This tiny spot of sin that stands between you still is holding back the happy opening of Heaven’s gate. How little is the hindrance that withholds the wealth of Heaven from you. And how great will be the joy in Heaven when you join the mighty chorus to the love of God![1]

We practice forgiveness in this world because it is the equivalent of Heaven’s justice.  We can also say, we forgive the world and all that is in it for opposing that which is Love, that which is reality, that which has no opposite and cannot be opposed.  We forgive the world for the pretense of being something while actually being nothing at all.  All that is good about the world, all that seems like love, all that is a righteous deed or a loving thought or wish – gives way to the reality of God’s Kingdom, to the reality of God’s justice, which is boundless and eternal Love, with no backlash, with no opposite, with no loss.  There in that boundless and eternal love there is no forgiveness for nothing to forgive exists in truth. 

And so the whole business of forgiveness boils down to me offering it to you until I realize that the love I have for you mirrors the justice of God given me and shows me that I never sinned, and you never sinned and there is absolutely nothing to forgive.  I thought the story of my humanity was real and you thought it was real right along with me and because we thought it was real, we thought we had so much to forgive in each other, but it was just a story.  Those stories that meant so much, those lives spent chasing after this and trying to satisfy that all ended up in the past, gone into the place that never was.  So we are called to forgive it not because it was real but because it misled us, it seemed so real, it got us so worked up, it did some very mean things to us and seemed to make us do some very mean things as well! 

When we forgive our fiction, when we forgive our humanity, when we forgive our sense of sin and separation, judgment and condemnation – we come to the place where we are restored to our true function – which is to create as God creates.  Because when we forgive the world, we get to see the real glory of Creation.  The flowers, the birds, the nature of the world itself is a wonderful foretaste of Heaven.  There is nothing to be sad about.  There is nothing to worry about.  There is nothing at all that concerns us in any way because we know that we are one with all that is.  There is nothing between us; there are no limits to our freedom and liberty for without sin the knowledge of oneness is no longer obscured to us – we are no longer alone and apart.  This is difficult to fathom in our humanity and the closest relationships we have in our yearning to be one with one another we find in intimacy and in the closeness we share with our children or in good conversation with friends.  And yet we can have this oneness with not only people, but with our pets and with nature itself.  For without sin there is no harm; there is nothing foul, violent, or rude.  Dare we believe that without sin nature itself is gentle and the weather benign?

The sinless place is a holy place and here we are the face of Sonship, the face of Christ, we see God as Father and as His dearly beloved we have no fear for we share in His glory and His wonder and the very Heart of all creation.  The Song of Heaven resonates with all of Creation – the Light of Heaven radiates and restores our Being, making us complete and whole in unity and love. 

Every time we forgive our human stories, we bring a miracle to the gate of Heaven.  Each special relationship we give to holiness is received by the Sonship and brings us nearer to our Home.  We can leave nobody out; we cannot favor one over the other, because each one of us is a reminder of our Father’s Love.  Let me teach you to love me instead of fear me; let me learn to love you instead of being afraid that you will take my love and throw it down and stomp on it and mock it and spit on it.  Let the miracle change your mind about me and I will let the miracle change my mind about you for when I see you as one with me, I can no longer be afraid of you, I can no longer mistrust you, I can no longer hold anything at all about your past against you for you are born anew.  And when I come to know that there is nothing terrible about love, that love is not a mad dog from hell, but my deliverance from the hell of not loving you, I need no other miracle.  For you and I are meant to be together, not apart.  And together we go Home. 

Once we hear even a little strum of the song of Heaven, there is no choice but to sing along, because the song cannot be sung in its entirety until you add your sweet voice and I add mine.  And we join that throng – you and me – together and not apart. 

Right now this tiny spot of sin stands between us – I still think of myself as Me, and you still think of yourself as You.  And yet how little is what stands between us, the Son of God, and with the Everything that is God’s Will.

Today when our ACIM group met, we went over this text together and as we were sitting there discussing the text, I could sense the spaces between us melt away.  While Linda was sharing a rather gory story of helping her neighbor pull a splinter of glass from her wrist, her face glowed with the light of Christ, and I not only heard her story, but I entered it with her.  And then during our luncheon as we were eating the delicious lentil soup and bread, there was another incident where each face I looked at seemed to be my own.  On the drive home, as I looked at the trees and the weeds growing by the side of the road, as I passed the houses, barns, and fields of cows, horses, and goats, I had the sense of oneness and delight with all that is.  I asked James about it, later, when we were sitting on the wooden rocking chairs outside on the slab overlooking our pond.  And he said that he was experiencing it, too.  It is very restful.  Time seems to stand still, and yet very nice things continue to happen quietly and without any sense of anxiety or constraint.  Everything is beautiful in the glow of forgiveness, the duckweed on the pond, the rough woods, and the garden remains, and dear James and the cats and the tractor – it all seemed to be an extension of my sense of self with only a sense of gain, not a loss at all.  While this is an individual expression of my own experiences with a sense of oneness and unity, I share this to encourage you to open your heart and mind to the concept of oneness both in and outside of your dedicated devotional times. 

In your personal devotional today ask Holy Spirit to expand your consciousness so that you may behold the Vision of Sonship. Reach for the High Mind of Christ, to see with His eyes beyond the world of opposition and conflict, to the place where we are joined forever with All that is.  Coming Home to God is the only thing that will ever make us happy and complete our Being, for when we come Home to God, we come Home to the Love Which made us and gave us our Being. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 26 The transition. IV Where sin has left. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM 26:III The Borderland

1. Complexity is not of God. How could it be when all He knows is one? He knows of one creation, one reality, one truth and but one Son. Nothing conflicts with oneness. How, then, could there be complexity in Him? What is there to decide? For it is conflict that makes choice possible. The truth is simple; it is one, without an opposite. And how could strife enter in its simple presence, and bring complexity where oneness is? The truth makes no decisions, for there is nothing to decide between. And only if there were could choosing be a necessary step in the advance toward oneness. What is everything leaves room for nothing else. Yet is this magnitude beyond the scope of this curriculum. Nor is it necessary we dwell on anything that cannot be immediately grasped.

2. There is a borderland of thought that stands between this world and Heaven. It is not a place, and when you reach it is apart from time. Here is the meeting place where thoughts are brought together, where conflicting values meet and all illusions are laid down beside the truth, where they are judged to be untrue. This borderland is just beyond the gate of Heaven. Here is every thought made pure and wholly simple. Here is sin denied, and everything that is received instead.

3. This is the journey’s end. We have referred to it as the real world. And yet there is a contradiction here, in that the words imply a limited reality, a partial truth, a segment of the universe made true. This is because knowledge makes no attack upon perception. They are brought together and only one continues past the gate where Oneness is. Salvation is a borderland where place and time and choice have meaning still, and yet it can be seen that they are temporary, out of place, and every choice has been already made. 

4. Nothing the Son of God believes can be destroyed. But what is truth to him must be brought to the last comparison that he will ever make; the last evaluation that will be possible, the final judgment upon this world. It is the judgment of the truth upon illusion, of knowledge on perception. It has no meaning and does not exist. This is not your decision. It is but a simple statement of a simple fact. But in this world there are no simple facts because what is the same and what is different remain unclear. The one essential thing to make a choice at all is this distinction. And herein lies the difference between the worlds. In this one, choice is made impossible. In the real world is choosing simplified.

5. Salvation stops just short of Heaven, for only perception needs salvation. Heaven was never lost, and so cannot be saved. Yet who can make a choice between the wish for Heaven and the wish for hell unless he recognizes they are not the same? This difference is the learning goal this course has set. It will not go beyond this aim. Its only purpose is to teach what is the same and what is different, leaving room to make the only choice that can be made.

6. There is no basis for a choice in this complex and over-complicated world. For no one understands what is the same and seems to choose where no choice really is. The real world is the area of choice made real, not in the outcome, but in the perception of alternatives for choice. That there is a choice is an illusion. Yet within this one lies the undoing of every illusion, not excepting this.

7. Is not this like your special function, where the separation is undone by change of purpose in what once was specialness and is now union? All illusions are but one. And in the recognition this is so lies the ability to give up all attempts to choose between them, and to make them different. How simple is the choice between the two things so clearly unalike. There is no conflict here. No sacrifice is possible in the relinquishment of an illusion recognized as such. Where all reality has been withdrawn from what was never true, can it be hard to give it up, and choose what must be true?[1]

In your personal devotions today ask Holy Spirit to illuminate this passage for you.  All that would be special in this realm of disunity, chaos, and despair is the opposition to what can have no opposition, is an opposite to what is our only one choice.  We may think of having a choice as being free but choosing between a lie and truth is not freedom nor is it liberty.  It is madness to believe in lies. 

Freedom is knowing truth and being liberated to be and to have all that is, to be entrusted with all of Creation, to be unified and at one – peaceful, loving, and joyful.  There is no peace when we choose that which would oppose it.  There is no love in opposition to love.  There is no lasting joy when all that makes us joyful can be snatched away and leave us full of sorrow.  To cherish the ability to choose between lies is to unnecessarily complicate what is restful, calm, and peaceful. 

Choosing between truth and lies is not a real choice for only one is true. Two plus two equals four and I have no real choice in the matter, even though I can be “free” and “choose” to complicate the matter and make up any number of lies about the resolution of this elementary equation.  We could name thousands upon thousands of different numbers, but four is the one true answer and so there is no real choice.  Such is the Kingdom of God – there can be all kinds of lies about God, and there can be all kinds of names and ways in which to worship and sacrifice to Him, but God is Love and God’s Justice is Love, and we are His Son.  There is no reason at all to complicate this and try to be His favorite, or sacrifice to Him, or dream up ways to keep part of His Creation separate from Him so we can gain ground on others.  God calls us to be like Him as Love, to see each other with love and tenderness, to show mercy and extend grace. 

Undoing our state of specialness requires the ability to see that we have no choice, that there is nothing complicated about it.  It is as simple as two plus two equals four.  We are holy because God is holy.  We are Spirit because God is Spirit.  We are Love because God created us with Love and in Love and to be Love, like Himself. 

When this becomes apparent in our minds, we may live in the perceptual world, but we are not of the perceptual world – we live then in the realm that borders Heaven but is not yet Heaven.  Our perceptions are healed.  We no longer live by the perceptions of flesh eyes and flesh senses for our Holiness guides us and informs us of our oneness and unity with all of Creation.  This is a blessed state of Being, the most blessed state of Being this side of Heaven.  We remember the Father for we are like Him – not in flesh but in Spirit.  We remember the Kingdom that shines within our hearts and minds and corrects all that is wrong about us, all that tears us apart and keeps us apart.  And the transition from our state of specialness, separateness, and squalor becomes a delightful phase of unity, equality, and purity.

The truth dawns upon us and there is no need for war and bloodshed, tribulation and sorrow.  God’s Will is for our love and peace and joy to be established forever.  There is no mystery. No secret signs and weird wonders.  No guesswork or codes or silly games.  There is no complexity in God for there is no choice in Truth.    

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 26 The transition. III. The borderland. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM – CHAPTER 26 THE TRANSITION II. Many Forms, One Correction

ACIM CHAPTER 26:III Many Forms; One Correction

1. It is not difficult to understand the reasons why you do not ask the Holy Spirit to solve all problems for you. He has not greater difficulty in resolving some than others. Every problem is the same to Him, because each one is solved in just the same respect and through the same approach. The aspects that need solving do not change, whatever form the problem seems to take. A problem can appear in many forms, and it will do so while the problems last. It serves no purpose to attempt to solve it in a special form. It will recur and then recur again and yet again, until it has been answered for all time and will not rise again in any form. And only then are you released from it.

2. The Holy Spirit offers you release from every problem that you think you have. They are the same to Him because each one, regardless of the form it seems to take, is a demand that someone suffer loss and make a sacrifice that you might gain. And when the situation is worked out, so no one loses is the problem gone, because it was an error in perception that now has been corrected. One mistake is not more difficult for Him to bring to truth than is another. For there is but one mistake; the whole idea that loss is possible and could result in gain for anyone. If this were true, then God would be unfair; sin would be possible, attack be justified and vengeance fair.

3. This one mistake, in any form has one correction. There is no loss; to think there is, is a mistake. You have no problems, though you think you have. And yet you could not think so if you saw them vanish one by one, without regard to size, complexity, or place and time, or any attribute which you perceive that makes each one seem different from the rest. Think not the limits you impose on what you see can limit God in any way.

4. The miracle of justice can correct all errors. Every problem is an error. It does injustice to the Son of God and therefore is not true. The Holy Spirit does not evaluate injustices as great or small, or more or less. They have no properties to Him. They are mistakes from which the Son of God is suffering, but needlessly. And so He takes the thorns and nails away. He does not pause to judge whether the hurt be large or little. He makes but one judgment; that to hurt God’s Son must be unfair and therefore is not so.

5. You who believe it safe to give but some mistakes to be corrected while you keep the others to yourself, remember this: Justice is total. There is no such thing as partial justice. If the Son of God is guilty then is he condemned, and he deserves no mercy from the God of justice. But ask not God to punish him because you find him guilty and would have him die. God offers you the means to see his innocence. Would it be fair to punish him because you will not look at what is there to see? Each time you keep a problem for yourself to solve, or judge that it is one that has no resolution, you have made it great, and past the hope of healing. You deny the miracle of justice can be fair.

6. If God is just, then can there be no problems that justice cannot solve. But you believe that some injustices are fair and good, and necessary to preserve yourself. It is these problems that you think are great and cannot be resolved. For there are those you want to suffer loss, and no one whom you wish to be preserved from sacrifice entirely. Consider once again your special function. One is given you to see in him his perfect sinlessness. And you will ask no sacrifice of him because you could not will he suffer loss. The miracles of justice you call forth will rest on you as surely as on him. Nor will the Holy Spirit be content until it is received by everyone. For what you give to Him is everyone’s, and by your giving it can He ensure that everyone receives it equally.

7. Think, then, how great your own release will be when you are willing to receive correction for all your problems. You will not keep one, for pain in any form you will not want. And you will see each little hurt resolved before the Holy Spirit’s gentle sight. For all of them are little in His sight, and worth no more than just a tiny sigh before they disappear, to be forever undone and unremembered. What seemed once to be a special problem, a mistake without a remedy, or an affliction without a cure, has been transformed into a universal blessing. Sacrifice is gone. And in its place the Love of God can be remembered and will shine away all memory of sacrifice and loss.

8. God cannot be remembered until justice is loved instead of feared. He cannot be unjust to anyone or anything because He knows that everything that is belongs to Him and will forever be as He created it. Nothing He loves but must be sinless and beyond attack. Your special function opens wide the door beyond which is the memory of His Love kept perfectly intact and undefiled. And all you need to do is but to wish that Heaven be given you instead of hell, and every bolt and barrier that seems to hold the door securely barred and locked will merely fall away and disappear. For it is not your Father’s Will that you should offer or receive less than He gave, when He created you in perfect love.[1]

We are called to love as the Father loves us.  In love we overlook the slights, the unfairness, the inequality, and the mean and selfish things that happen in the flesh.  We overlook the violence and the bloodshed, the world wars and the political mouth battles.  We overlook the religious factions and theological battles over dogma and doctrine.  We offer forgiveness and mercy. We walk in grace and in perfect love. 

We cannot do this on our own for on our own it is madness to overlook the madness of the world.  We feel as if we must jump in and fight the good fight and make war upon that which hinders peace – but our Holiness tells us that we must go higher, we must rise above the battlegrounds of the world’s insanity for it is an illusion of separateness and strife.  To jump in is to be engulfed by its insanity.  To rise above it is to overlook it and to look upon it with forgiveness and mercy and love.  This is the tenderness of God.  This is God’s justice.  God does not declare war upon madness; God’s Will is to restore sanity to those who have lost it, to bring light to us who are wandering in the dark – not to punish us or banish us from the Kingdom.  For we are the Kingdom. We are God’s Will, and God’s Will is for us to His Son.  

When you are willing to look upon me with love, I am healed of all that is not love.  All the things that warped and perverted me are made right by your love, by your forgiveness, by your devotion to my holiness and Sonship.  You did not forget me!  You did not ban me from your bliss.  You did not forsake me when I most needed your help and tell me to help myself or remind me of how undeserving of your love and fellowship I was.  You were not concerned that I may have advantages that you never had.  You were not concerned about me never rising above you or stealing your glory or taking credit for your hard work.  You simply practiced the justice of God in the way we have been instructed and you restored my awareness to Sonship. 

There are no problems that God’s justice cannot solve.  God can only be remembered when His justice is loved and practiced wholly and with all, not fearfully and miserly doled out to a special few. I merely wish for Heaven instead of hell for you and for me, and all the barriers between us begin to fall away and disappear.  This is our Father’s Will for us – it is the resolution to every problem that seems to come between us – because He created us in perfect love and Love is our Home in Him and in each other.   

[1]A Course in Miracles. Chapter 26 The transition. II. Many forms; one correction. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For 2021 daily Workbook lessons, visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM – Chapter 25:I The “Sacrifice” of Oneness

1. In the “dynamics” of attack is sacrifice to a key idea.  It is the pivot upon which all compromise, all desperate attempts to strike a bargain, and all conflicts achieve a seeming balance.  It is a symbol of the central theme that something must lose. Its focus on the body is apparent, for it is always an attempt to limit loss. The body is itself a sacrifice; a giving up of power in the name of saving just a little for yourself. To see a brother in another body, separate from yours, is the expression of a wish to see a little part of him and sacrifice the rest. Look at the world, and you will see nothing attached to anything beyond itself. All seeming entities can come a little nearer, or go a little farther off, but cannot join.

2. The world you see is based on “sacrifice” of oneness. It is a picture of complete disunity and total lack of joining. Around each entity is built a wall so seeming solid that it looks as if what is inside can never reach without, and what is out can never reach and join with what is locked away within the wall. Each part must sacrifice the other part, to keep itself complete. For if they joined each one would lose its own identity, and by their separation are their selves maintained.

3. The little that the body fences off becomes the self, preserved through sacrifice of all the rest. And all the rest must lose the little part, remaining incomplete to keep its own identity intact. In this perception of yourself the body’s loss would be a sacrifice indeed. For sight of bodies becomes the sign that sacrifice is limited, and something still remains for you alone. And for the little to belong to you are limits placed on everything outside just as they are on everything you think is yours. For giving and receiving are the same. And to accept the limits of a body is to impose these limits on each brother whom you see. For you must see him as you see yourself.

4. The body is a loss and can be made to sacrifice. And while you see your brother as a body, apart from you and separate in his cell, you are demanding sacrifice from him to you. What greater sacrifice could be demanded than that God’s Son perceive himself without a Father? And his Father be without His Son? Yet every sacrifice demands that they be separate and without the other. The memory of God must be denied if any sacrifice is asked of anyone. What witness to the wholeness of God’s Son is seen within a world of separate bodies, however much he witnesses to truth? He is invisible in such a world. Nor can his song of union and of love be heard at all. Yet is it given him to make the world recede before his song, and sight of him replace the body’s eyes.

5. Those who would see the witnesses to truth instead of to illusion merely ask that they might see a purpose in the world that gives it sense and makes it meaningful. Without your special function has this world no meaning for you. Yet it can become a treasure house as rich and limitless as Heaven itself. No instant passes here in which your brother’s holiness cannot be seen, to add a limitless supply to every meager scrap and tiny crumb of happiness that you allot yourself.

6. You can lose sight of oneness but can not make sacrifice of its reality. Nor can you lose what you would sacrifice, nor keep the Holy Spirit from His task of showing you that it has not been lost. Hear, then, the song your brother sings to you, and let the world recede, and take the rest his witness offers on behalf of peace. But judge him not, for you will hear no song of liberation for yourself, nor see what it is given him to witness to, that you may see it and rejoice with him. Make not his holiness a sacrifice to your belief in sin. You sacrifice your innocence with his and die each time you see in him a sin deserving death.

7. Yet every instant can you be reborn and given life again. His holiness gives life to you, who cannot die because his sinlessness is known to God; and can no more be sacrificed by you than can the light in you be blotted out because he sees it not. You who would make a sacrifice of life, and make your eyes and ears bear witness to the death of God and of His holy Son, think not that you have power to make of Them what God willed not They be. In Heaven, God’s Son is not imprisoned in a body, nor is sacrificed in solitude to sin. And as he is in Heaven, so must he be eternally and everywhere. He is the same forever. Born again each instant, untouched by time, and far beyond the reach of any sacrifice of life or death. For neither did he make, and only one was given him by One Who knows His gifts can never suffer sacrifice and loss.

8. God’s justice rests in gentleness upon His Son and keeps him safe from all injustice the world would lay upon him. Could it be that you could make his sins reality and sacrifice his Father’s Will for him? Condemn him not by seeing him within the rotting prison where he sees himself. It is your special function to ensure the door be opened, that he may come forth to shine on you and give you back the gift of freedom by receiving it of you. What is the Holy Spirit’s special function but to release the holy Son of God from the imprisonment he made to keep himself from justice? Could your function be a task apart and separate from His Own?[1]

We sacrifice our oneness and unity to be separate and see each other as bodies rather than the Sonship of God.  In the body we can only demand sacrifice of one another for unlike Sonship, what I do for you is something I am not doing for myself in the body.  We cannot every communicate fully as bodies.  Everything you say will be clouded by my perception of you.  You may tell me that you like my hairstyle, and I will never know if you are sincere or not, because you are not one with me.  And my perception of you may be based upon all the times I heard you falsely compliment another and then mock and scorn them behind their back!  My perception of what you say will be clouded by all my other perceptions of you, personal and otherwise – the color of your skin, your religious and political affiliations, our past encounters, your education level, your ability to communicate clearly and succinctly without going off on different tangents.  Without oneness, you will always be a closed book to me, and I will be a closed book to you – no matter how much we talk and text each other, no matter how many secrets we share, no matter how closely we are related.  There is absolutely no way we can know one another as fully and truly as we do in Sonship. 

We sacrifice our Sonship, our oneness, each time we hold each other accountable and judge each other according to the perceptions of the body.  I may ask you for a favor on a day in which you are just not able to give me what I ask of you.  And instead of being gentle, tender, and understanding I will mentally list to myself all the times I went out of my way for you and helped you out whether I felt like it or not.  I will hold a grudge toward you for not being the friend to me that I am to you.  I will sacrifice our oneness in my efforts to justify how unfairly I have been treated by you.  My feelings for you will cool and I may determine in my heart that the next time you need a favor I will not be available to help you. 

This is the way it works here in the world as we relate to one another from our separateness.  There seems to be no way to escape the loneliness of our separateness and yet we hold on to our precious little scrap of humanity as if it is priceless and precious and not the hell of despair, darkness, and death that is its only promise.  While the oneness of Sonship can never be “sacrificed” because it is God’s Will and therefore eternal and never lost – it is lost to us as long as we rely on our human perceptions.

All of us know what it is like to get our signals crossed with those who are our nearest and dearest.  The ones we love the best are the ones who seem to fail us the most.  It may be a scowl or a cross word.  A social slight. A selfish ploy to get more than ones gives.  We fail to recognize each other’s joys and sorrows.  We think we mean more to someone than we really do.  We mistake another’s good manners for genuine interest in our boring monologues about ourselves and our passions.  We hate their choice of spouse and partner.  We cannot stand their laziness or the way they cripple themselves with their addictions and predilections. 

To those who are not as near and dear we tend to be even less merciful.  Someone from their culture disrespected someone from ours, but we still lump them all together and judge them for the meanness and spite which was passed down to us from previous generations.  They have more privilege than us.  They were born rich, and we were born having to struggle for every little thing.  The world we see with our little eyes is based on the “sacrifice” of oneness.  I will not see you as one with me as long as I see you as a body, as anything other than Christ, in holiness and purity of Sonship.  And when I do not see you as one with me, I will not be one with my true and everlasting self, for as I see you, I see myself.

There seems to be no escape from our human perceptions of one another, separated by these flesh and blood bodies which draw us close and then tear us apart.  And yet every instant we can be reborn and given life again.  There is a way to not sacrifice our oneness with each other.  When we come to our daily practice and devote our mind to God’s Kingdom, we find the Sonship is not imprisoned in separate bodies nor is sacrificed to loneliness and sinful thoughts of hatred and conflict with one another. 

God’s justice rests upon us in gentleness and as we seek God’s justice for each other, we no longer sacrifice our oneness, but embrace it – bringing light and freedom from the despair of loneliness and separateness. We choose to no longer fear one another, but to love one another.  We refuse to believe the false report.  As Holy Spirit awakens the High Mind of Christ within us we return to God’s judgment of one another – and God always judges for us and not against us.  As we awaken, our purpose becomes one with that of our Father. 

In your personal devotional practice, ask Holy Spirit to awaken the Mind of Christ within you and bring you to this place.  Do not be afraid to ask for enlightenment for only in the light of Christ and His Love for us, will we know one another as we were created. Only in knowing one another, we will find our own true and everlasting happiness for we can only be happy together, and at peace, and as one. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 26 The transition. I. The “sacrifice” of oneness. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM – CHAPTER 25 THE JUSTICE OF GOD IX. The Justice of Heaven

ACIM – Chapter 25 IX. The Justice of Heaven

1. What can it be but arrogance to think your little errors cannot be undone by Heaven’s justice? And what could this mean except that they are sins and not mistakes, forever uncorrectable, and to be met with vengeance, not with justice? Are you willing to be released from all effects of sin? You cannot answer this until you see all that the answer must entail. For if you answer “yes” it means you will forego all values of this world in favor of the peace of Heaven. Not one sin, would you retain. And not one doubt that this is possible will you hold dear that sin be kept in place. You mean that truth has greater value now than all illusions. And you recognize that truth must be revealed to you, because you know not what it is.

2. To give reluctantly is not to gain the gift, because you are reluctant to accept it. It is saved for you until reluctance to receive it disappears, and you are willing it be given you. God’s justice warrants gratitude, not fear. Nothing you give is lost to you or anyone, but cherished and preserved in heaven, where all of the treasures given to God’s Son are kept for him and offered anyone who but holds out his hand in willingness they be received. Nor is the treasure less as it is given out. Each gift but adds to the supply. For God is fair. He does not fight against His Son’s reluctance to perceive salvation as a gift from Him. Yet would His justice not be satisfied until it is received by everyone.

3. Be certain any answer to a problem the Holy Spirit solves will always be one in which no one loses. And this must be true because He asks no sacrifice of anyone. An answer which demands the slightest loss to anyone has not resolved the problem, but has added to it and made it greater, harder to resolve, and more unfair. It is impossible the Holy Spirit could see unfairness as a resolution. To him, what is unfair must be corrected because it is unfair. And every error is a perception in which one, at least, is seen unfairly. Thus is justice not accorded to the Son of God. When anyone is seen as losing, he has been condemned, and punishment becomes his due instead of justice.

4. The sight of innocence makes punishment impossible, and just as sure. The Holy Spirit’s perception leaves no ground for an attack. Only a loss could justify attack, and loss of any kind He cannot see. The world solves problems in another way. It sees a resolution as a state in which it is decided who shall win and who shall lose; how much the one shall take, and how much the loser still defend. Yet does the problem still remain unsolved, for only justice can set up a state in which there is no loser, no one left unfairly treated and deprived, and thus with grounds for vengeance. Problem solving cannot be vengeance, which at best can bring another problem added to the first, in which the murder is not obvious.

5. The Holy Spirit’s problem solving is the way in which the problem ends. It has been solved because it has been met with justice. Until it has it will recur because it has not yet been solved. The principle that justice means no one can lose is crucial to this course. For miracles depend on justice. Not as it is seen through this world’s eyes, but as God knows it and as knowledge is reflected in the sight the Holy Spirit gives.

6. No one deserves to lose. And what would be unjust to him cannot occur. Healing must be for everyone because he does not merit an attack of any kind. What order can there be in miracles unless someone deserves to suffer more and others less? And is this justice to the wholly innocent? A miracle is justice. It is not a special gift to some, to be withheld from others as less worthy, more condemned, and thus apart from healing. Who is there who can be separate from salvation, if its purpose is the end of specialness? Where is salvation’s justice if some errors are unforgivable and warrant vengeance in place of healing and return of peace?

7. Salvation cannot seek to help God’s Son be more unfair than he has sought to be. If miracles, the Holy Spirit’s gift, were given specially to an elect and special group, and kept apart from others as less deserving, then is He an ally to specialness. What He cannot perceive He bears no witness to. And everyone is equally entitled to His gift of healing and deliverance and peace. To give a problem to the Holy Spirit to solve for you means that you want it solved. To keep it for yourself to solve without His help is to decide it should remain unsettled, unresolved, and lasting in its power of injustice and attack. No one can be unjust to you unless you have decided first to be unjust. And then must problems rise to block your way, and peace be scattered by the winds of hate.

8. Unless you think that all your brothers have an equal right to miracles with you, you will not claim your right to them because you were unjust to one with equal rights. Seek to deny and you will feel denied. Seek to deprive, and you have been deprived. A miracle can never be received because another could receive it not. Only forgiveness offers miracles. And pardon must be to everyone.

9. The little problems that you keep and hide become your secret sins, because you did not choose to let them be removed for you. And so they gather dust and grow, until they cover everything that you perceive and leave you fair to no one. Not one right do you believe you have. And bitterness, with vengeance justified and mercy lost, condemns you as unworthy of forgiveness. The unforgiven have no mercy to bestow upon another. That is why your sole responsibility must be to take forgiveness for yourself.

10. The miracle that you receive, you give. Each one becomes an illustration of the law on which salvation rests; that justice must be done to all if anyone is to be healed. No one can lose, and everyone must benefit. Each miracle is an example of what justice can accomplish when it is offered to everyone alike. It is received and given equally. It is awareness that giving and receiving are the same. Because it does not make the same unlike, it sees no difference for none exists. And thus it is the same for everyone because it sees no differences in them. Its offering is universal, and it teaches but one message:

What is God’s belongs to everyone and is his due.[1]

So here we are at the end of the chapter on the justice of God. I hope that you have been enriched by this devotional text as I have been.  We find that God’s justice is the Father welcoming home His Son.  We find that there are no favorites, there are none that can point accusing fingers of condemnation and bar any part of Creation from the gates of Heaven.  There is no specialness in Heaven for we are all created equally in the Spirit and are equally entitled to the Kingdom we call Home. 

God’s justice is one of teaching us forgiveness, for as we forgive our brothers their trespasses, we are forgiven ours.  To withhold mercy and forgiveness from anyone else for any reason is to deny God’s mercy and to stay bound in the perceptual world of time and space. 

In your personal devotional practice today read each paragraph paying particular attention to sentences five and six in paragraph nine where it says: “The unforgiven have no mercy to bestow upon another.  That is why your sole responsibility must be to take forgiveness for yourself.”  This leapt out at me today and kept coming back to my mind as I went about my daily chores.  I could recall several instances in my day-to-day interactions with others in which I could see no mercy, forgiveness, or loving response to the issues that come up between people.  We must not wait around for others to take the first step in offering forgiveness for unless someone is listening to their inner Holiness, they do not know what it is and are afraid of showing mercy. In the flesh, showing mercy and believing the best about others, forgiving mistakes, and taking the sting out of reproach is a sign of weakness, a welcome mat for being taken advantage of, a source of mockery and scorn.    

Showing mercy and offering forgiveness simply means we consciously choose to overlook all the mistakes of humanity – those which loom large and those which seem petty and trite.  We simply chock them all up to the illusion of enmity between us and God.  In this state of mind I do not look at you and see a liberal or a conservative, I see a brother and a friend.  I do not define you by the color of your skin or your gender or sexual orientation.  Your religion and country of origin cannot separate us from our love for each other, for in Christ we are and ever will be one.  You can only see this, and I can only see this when we accept forgiveness for ourselves, and then have this glorious gift to offer each other.  Otherwise we will go on seeing ourselves as divided and respond and react to one another accordingly.  This is not justice, and this is not love.    

We take forgiveness for ourselves by accepting Christ who restores our sense of Sonship and entitlement to our consciousness.  We can no longer identify with humanity when we accept Sonship.  Instead we look upon ourselves and the lives we have led and are still leading in the flesh as God looks upon us – with kindness, compassion, tender mercy, and love.  This is a process, and the justice of God is not looking to punish us or humiliate us, the justice of God calls to us to awaken from our stupor, shake off our bondage to flesh and ego, and accept our beautiful Sonship in Him.  When we accept this for ourselves we are in a powerful position to offer it to everyone we know.  Quietly and without making a big show of ourselves, we forgive each other’s foibles, we show mercy by giving our hurt feelings, our wounded pride, and the sorrow caused by loss and dismay to our Holiness which will show us the meaninglessness of all that we would cherish and hold against each other.  We commit each day to our practice of holding nothing but the tender viewpoint toward ourselves and one another.  For God’s justice is one of love and calls to everybody to come Home. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 25 The justice of God. IX The justice of heaven. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For 2021 daily Workbook lessons, visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM – Chapter 25.VIII Justice Returned to Love

1. The Holy Spirit can use all that you give to Him for your salvation. But He cannot use what you withhold, for He cannot take it from you without your willingness. For if He did, you would believe He wrested it from you against your will. And so you would not learn it is your will to be without it. You need not give it to Him wholly willingly, for if you could you had no need of Him. But this He needs; That you prefer He take it than that you keep it for yourself alone and recognize that what brings loss to no one you would not know. This much is necessary to add to the idea no one can lose for you to gain. And nothing more.

2. Here is the only principle salvation needs. Nor is it necessary that your faith in it be strong, unswerving, and without attack from all beliefs opposed to it. You have no fixed allegiance. But remember salvation is not needed by the saved. You are not called upon to do what one divided still against himself would find impossible. Have little faith that wisdom could be found in such a state of mind. But be you thankful that only little faith is asked of you. What but a little faith remains to those who still believe in sin? What could they know of Heaven and the justice of the saved?

3. There is a kind of justice and salvation of which the world knows nothing. To the world, justice and vengeance are the same, for sinners see justice only as their punishment, perhaps sustained by someone else, but not escaped. The laws of sin demand a victim. Who it maybe makes little difference. But death must be the cost and must be paid. This is not justice, but insanity. Yet how could justice be defined without insanity where love means hate, and death is seen as victory and triumph over eternity and timelessness and life?

4. You who know not of justice still can ask and learn the answer. Justice looks on all in the same way. It is not just that one should lack for what another has. For that is vengeance in whatever form it takes. Justice demands no sacrifice, for any sacrifice is made that sin may be preserved and kept. It is a payment offered for the cost of sin, but not the total cost. The rest is taken from another, to be laid beside your little payment, to “atone” for all that you would keep, and not give up. So is the victim seen as partly you, with someone else by far the greater part. And in the total cost, the greater his the less is yours. And justice, being blind, is satisfied by being paid, it matters not by whom.

5. Can this be justice? God knows not of this. But justice does He know and knows it well. For He is wholly fair to everyone. Vengeance is alien to God’s Mind because He knows of justice. To be just is to be fair, and not be vengeful. Fairness and vengeance are impossible, for each one contradicts the other and denies that it is real. It is impossible for you to share the Holy Spirit’s justice with the mind that can conceive of specialness at all. Yet how could He be just if He condemns a sinner for the crimes he did not do, but thinks he did? And where would justice be if He demanded of the ones obsessed with the idea of punishment that they lay it aside, unaided, and perceive it is not true?

6. It is extremely hard for those who still believe sin meaningful to understand the Holy Spirit’s justice. They must believe He shares their own confusion and cannot avoid the vengeance that their own belief in justice must entail. And so they fear the Holy Spirit and perceive the “wrath” of God in Him. Nor can they trust Him not to strike them dead with lightning bolts torn from the “fires” of Heaven by God’s Own angry Hand. They do believe that Heaven is hell and are afraid of love. And deep suspicion and the chill of fear comes over them when they are told that they have never sinned. Their world depends on sin’s stability. And they perceive the “threat” of what God knows as justice to be more destructive to themselves and to their world than vengeance, which they understand and love.

7. So do they think the loss of sin a curse. And flee the Holy Spirit as if He were a messenger from hell, sent from above, in treachery and guile, to work God’s vengeance on them in the guise of a deliverer and a friend. What could He be to them except a devil, dressed to deceive within an angel’s cloak. And what escape has He for them except a door to hell that seems to look like Heaven’s gate?

8. Yet justice cannot punish those who ask for punishment but have a Judge Who knows that they are wholly innocent in truth. In justice He is bound to set them free and give them all the honor they deserve and have denied themselves because they are not fair and cannot understand that they are innocent. Love is not understandable to sinners because they think that justice is split off from love and stands for something else. And thus is love perceived as weak, and vengeance strong. For love has lost when judgment left its side and is too weak to save from punishment. But vengeance without love has gained in strength by being separate and apart from love. And what but vengeance now can help and save, while love stands feebly by with helpless hands, bereft of justice and vitality, and powerless to save?

9. What can Love ask of you who think that all of this is true? Could He, in justice and in love, believe in your confusion you have much to give? You are not asked to trust Him far. No more than what you see He offers you, and what you recognize you could not give yourself. In God’s Own justice does He recognize all you deserve but understands as well that you cannot accept it for yourself. It is His special function to hold out to you the gifts the innocent deserve. And everyone that you accept brings joy to Him as well as you. He knows that Heaven is richer made by each one you accept. And God rejoices as His Son receives what loving justice knows to be his due. For love and justice are not different. Because they are the same does mercy stand at God’s right hand and gives the Son of God the power to forgive himself of sin.

10. To him who merits everything, how can it be that anything be kept from him? For what would be injustice, and unfair indeed to all the holiness that is in him, however much he recognizes it not. God knows of no injustice. He would not allow His Son to be judged by those who seek his death and could not see his worth at all. What honest witnesses could they call forth to speak on his behalf? And who would come to plead for him, and not against his life? No justice would be given him by you. Yet God ensured that justice would be done unto the Son He loves and would protect from all unfairness you might seek to offer, believing vengeance is his proper due.

11. As specialness cares not who pays the cost of sin, so it be paid, the Holy Spirit heeds not who looks on innocence at last, provided it as seen and recognized. For just one witness is enough, if he sees truly. Simple justice asks no more. Of each one does the Holy Spirit ask if he will be that one, so justice may return to love and there be satisfied. Each special function He allots is but for this; that each one learns that love and justice are not separate. And both are strengthened by their union with each other. Without love is justice prejudice and weak. And love without justice is impossible. For love is fair and cannot chasten without cause. What cause can be to warrant attack upon the innocent? In justice, then, does love correct mistakes, but not in vengeance. For that would be unjust to innocence.

12. You can be perfect witness to the power of love and justice, if you understand it is impossible the Son of God could merit vengeance. You need not perceive, in every circumstance, that this is true. Nor need you look to your experience within the world, which is but shadows of all that is really happening within yourself. The understanding that you need comes not of you, but from a larger Self, so great and holy that He could not doubt His innocence. Your special function is a call to Him, that He may smile on you whose sinlessness He shares. His understanding will be yours. And so the Holy Spirit’s special function has been fulfilled. God’s Son has found a witness unto his sinlessness and not his sins. How little need you give the Holy Spirit that simple justice may be given you.

13. Without impartiality there is no justice. How can specialness be just? Judge not because you cannot, not because you are a miserable sinner, too. How can the special really understand that justice is the same for everyone? To take from one to give another must be an injustice to them both, since they are equal in the Holy Spirit’s sight. Their Father gave the same inheritance to both. Who would have more or less is not aware that he has everything. He is no judge of what must be another’s due because he thinks he is deprived. And so must he be envious and try to take away from whom he judges. He is not impartial and cannot fairly see another’s rights because his own have been obscured to him.

14. You have the right to all the universe; to perfect peace, complete deliverance from all effects of sin, and to the life eternal, joyous and complete in every way, as God appointed for His holy Son. This is the only justice Heaven knows, and all the Holy Spirit brings to earth. Your special function shows you nothing else but perfect justice can prevail for you. And you are safe from vengeance in all forms. The world deceives, but it cannot replace God’s justice with a version of its own. For only love is just and can perceive what justice must accord the Son of God. Let love decide, and never fear that you, in your unfairness, will deprive yourself of what God’s justice has allotted you.[1]

When we read about the perfect justice of God we realize how innocent we are in His sight.  We have been taught something entirely different, we are born into a world which defeats us before we are even born.  While to many who have accepted the flesh realm as the only realm that is, it still may seem such a privilege to have a body in which to live one life and prove oneself against the rest of the world.  The world and all its vengeance and spite may be as good as it gets in their minds.  Accept the good with the bad.  Accept the love with the hate.  Accept the peace with the war. 

But Jesus teaches us that there are no opposites to the truth of God.  And the truth of God is love, life, and everlasting happiness and peace.  To oppose this is to ask for the opposite of any one of these virtues.  To oppose that which is Spirt and therefor inhabits all, is to ask for a body that is separate from the whole, a body which cannot withstand eternity, but which must die, a body which symbolizes all that would believe that there is power in opposition, in conflict, in war. 

To oppose the truth is to live a lie.  There is no sin in believing a lie.  Believing in a lie is easily correctable by simply learning the truth.  And this is justice returned to love.  For dreaming up lies and living in a holographic, time-based realm where the lies we dream are virtually played out and experienced, is simply the only way to learn that truth prevails and lies will always fail us. 

Read over this section carefully and prayerfully.  Just as the rest of the Course will not make sense to us if we are not in a contemplative and peaceful state of mind, this section in particular needed another day of reflection before I could comment upon it.  I let it rest upon my mind as I cleaned my house and organized my arts and craft cupboard.  I let it rest upon my mind as I prepared lunch for James and me, and later when we went to the fair with Linda.  I came home and went to bed, still with the thoughts of justice returned to love resting in my mind.  This world has a different meaning to justice than that of justice returned to love.  This world’s justice is cruel.  It is not meted out with the intent to transform us or change us for the better.  It is based upon punishment and death.  The justice God bestows is awakening our awareness of Sonship, to give to us All that He is and ever will be, to deliver us from all effects of separation and sin.  This is the justice of God, the justice of Love, keeping us safe from all spite and vengeance in every form. 

The world may deceive us.  We may muddy our minds with the constant calls for justice that the world promises. We may demand that the sins of others deserve punishment and retribution, while making allowances for our own failings.  And yet the judge and jury in all cases and in all forms are one with those they condemn.  There is no justice in this world for the world itself is a lie – and a lie is neither good or evil – a lie is simply not true; it has no real existence – and to get involved in any aspect of it is to deny truth.  Therefore the world will never replace God’s justice with that of its own making.  For only love is just and can perceive the truth of who we are and what we deserve. 

Today commit yourself again to letting love decide for your brother and for yourself.  When we decide with out love against our brothers, we deprive ourselves of what God’s justice brings to us.  We are not here to judge against one another, but for one another, for this is only fair and right and good. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 25 The justice of God. VIII Justice returned to love. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 1


1. Yet if the Holy Spirit can commute each sentence that you laid upon yourself into a blessing, then it cannot be a sin. Sin is the only thing in all the world that cannot change. It is immutable. And on its changelessness the world depends. The magic of the world can seem to hide the pain of sin from sinners and deceive with glitter and with guile. Yet each one knows the cost of sin is death. And so it is. For sin is a request for death, a wish to make this world’s foundation sure as love, dependable as Heaven, and as strong as God Himself. The world is safe from love to everyone who thinks sin possible. Nor will it change. Yet is it possible what God created not should share the attributes of His creation, when it opposes it in every way?

2. It cannot be the “sinner’s” wish for death is just as strong as is God’s Will for life. Nor can the basis of a world He did not make be firm and sure as Heaven. How could it be that hell and Heaven are the same? And is it possible that what He did not will cannot be changed? What is immutable besides His Will? And what can share its attributes except itself? What wish can rise against His Will, and be immutable? If you could realize nothing is changeless but the Will of God, this course would not be difficult for you. For it is this that you do not believe. Yet there is nothing else you could believe, if you but looked at what it really is.

3. Let us go back to what we said before and think of it more carefully. It must be so that either God is mad or is this world a place of madness. Not one Thought of His makes any sense at all within this world. And nothing that the world believes as true has any meaning in His Mind at all. What makes no sense and has no meaning is insanity. And what is madness cannot be the truth. If one belief so deeply valued here were true, then every thought God ever had is an illusion. And if but one thought of His is true, then all beliefs the world gives any meaning to are false and make no sense at all. This is the choice you make. Do not attempt to see it differently, nor twist it into something it is not. For only this decision can you make. The rest is up to God, and not to you.

4. To justify one value that the world upholds is to deny your Father’s sanity and yours. For God and His beloved Son do not think differently. And it is the agreement of their thought that makes the Son a co-creator with the Mind Whose Thought created him. So if he chooses to believe one thought opposed to truth, he has decided he is not his Father’s Son because the Son is mad, and sanity must lie apart from both the Father and the Son. This you believe. Think not that this belief depends upon the form it takes. Who thinks the world is sane in any way, is justified in anything it thinks, or is maintained by any form of reason, believes this to be true. Sin is not real because the Father and the Son are not insane. This world is meaningless because it rests on sin. Who could create the changeless if it does not rest on truth?

5. The Holy Spirit has the power to change the whole foundation of the world you see to something else; a basis not insane, on which a sane perception can be based, another world perceived. And one in which nothing is contradicted that would lead the Son of God to sanity and joy. Nothing attests to death and cruelty, to separation and to differences. For here is everything perceived as one, and no one loses that each one may gain.

6. Test everything you believe against this one requirement and understand that everything that meets this one demand is worthy of your faith. But nothing else. What is not love is sin, and either one perceives the other as insane and meaningless. Love is the basis for a world perceived as wholly mad to sinners, who believe theirs is the way to sanity. But sin is equally insane within the sight of love, whose gentle eyes would look beyond the madness and rest peacefully on truth. Each one sees a world immutable, as each defines the changeless and eternal truth of what you are. And each reflects a view of what the Father and the Son must be, to make that viewpoint meaningful and sane.

7. Your special function is the special form in which the fact that God is not insane appears most sensible and meaningful to you. The content is the same. The form is suited to your special needs, and to the special time and place in which you think you find yourself, and where you can be free of place and time, and all that you believe must limit you. The Son of God cannot be bound by time nor place nor anything God did not will. Yet if His Will is seen as madness, then the form of sanity which makes it most acceptable to those who are insane requires special choice. Nor can this choice be made by the insane, whose problem is their choices are not free, and made with reason in the light of sense.

8. It would be madness to entrust salvation to the insane. Because He is not mad has God appointed One as sane as He to raise a saner world to meet the sight of everyone who chose insanity as his salvation. To this One is given the choice of form most suitable to him; one which will not attack the world he sees but enter into it in quietness and show him he is mad. This One but points to an alternative, another way of looking at what he has seen before, and recognizes as the world in which he lives, and thought he understood before.

9. Now must he question this, because the form of the alternative is one which he cannot deny, nor overlook, nor fail completely to perceive at all. To each his special function is designed to be perceived as possible, and more and more desired, as it proves to him that it is an alternative he really wants. From this position does his sinfulness, and all the sin he sees within the world, offer him less and less. Until he comes to understand it cost him his sanity and stands between him and whatever hope he has of being sane. Nor is he left without escape from madness, for he has a special part in everyone’s escape. He can no more be left outside, without a special function in the hope of peace, than could the Father overlook His Son, and pass him by in careless thoughtlessness.

10. What is dependable except God’s Love? And where does sanity abide except in Him? The One Who speaks for Him can show you this, in the alternative He chose especially for you. It is God’s Will that you remember this, and so emerge from deepest mourning into perfect joy. Accept the function that has been assigned to you in God’s Own plan to show His Son that hell and Heaven are different, not the same. And that in Heaven, They are all the same, without the differences which would have made a hell of Heaven and a heaven of hell, had such insanity been possible.

11. The whole belief that someone loses but reflects the underlying tenet God must be insane. For in this world it seems that one must gain because another lost. If this were true, then God is mad indeed!  But what is this belief except a form of the more basic tenet, “Sin is real and rules the world?” For every little gain must someone lose and pay exact amount in blood and suffering. For otherwise would evil triumph and destruction be the total cost of any gain at all. You who believe that God is mad, look carefully at this, and understand that it must be either God or this must be insane, but hardly both.

12. Salvation is rebirth of the idea no one can lose for anyone to gain. And everyone must gain if anyone would be a gainer. Here is sanity restored. And on this single rock of truth can faith in God’s eternal saneness rest in perfect confidence and perfect peace. Reason is satisfied, for all insane beliefs can be corrected here. And sin must be impossible if this is true. This is the rock on which salvation rests, the vantage point from which the Holy Spirit gives meaning and direction to the plan in which your special function has a part. For here your special function is made whole because it shares the function of the whole.

13. Remember all temptation is but this: a mad belief that God’s insanity would make you sane and give you what you want; that either God or you must lose to madness because your aims cannot be reconciled. Death demands life, but life is not maintained at any cost. No one can suffer for the Will of God to be fulfilled. Salvation is His Will because you share it. Not for you alone, but for the Self That is the Son of God. He cannot lose, for if he could the loss would be His Father’s, and in Him no loss is possible. And this is sane because it is the truth.[1]

The Voice for God within each one of us has the power to change the sin-laden, timebound, and physical restraints of the world we see to something else. This is the rock of our salvation for this is where we find what can never be found in the world we see with our flesh eyes. For the world we perceive with our human eyes holds no certain peace, no lasting love.  In a world based upon the idea of opposites and opposition, we are free to pursue happiness but are guaranteed we will never have happiness for any little bit of happiness time is sure to snatch away. No real life in a world that runs on taxes and death, where every moment is unsure; where God is against us and not for us; where we fear that which we are called to love and cherish that which fills us with fear, dread, and sorrow.

And yet the rock of our salvation is the world we see with the Vision of Christ. The world where all is One and One is all. No one loses in such a world, for what enriches you will enrich me and what blesses me will be your blessing.

In your personal devotional practice today, spend as much time as you can assessing everything you believe against the rock of our salvation – for nothing is worthy of your faith if someone gains and someone else loses; if God is for you but not for me, if you get to be rich and I must stay poor. The rock of our salvation is our belief in the oneness of God’s Son in which all of Creation is unified in Love. This is madness to those who believe in sin and punishment; for when we see only with our flesh eyes, we are doomed to accept the physical world as we experience it in the flesh, in separation, and without the unity of Spirit. We will hold false concepts of what makes us holy compared to the unholiness of our brothers.  We will adopt religious beliefs as a means to control and manipulate others rather than setting them free from a world of limits and scarcity, and by doing this to others, we bind ourselves in heavy chains of sin and shame. 

But the world that we see with our flesh eyes and experience with our flesh senses is crazy in the worst possible sense of the word to the Vision we regain with Sonship. Rather than be filled with fear and disappointment, bitterness and regret, we align ourselves each day with the Holy Spirit’s perception given separately to each one of us – individually and yet undivided for each of us serves the purpose of wholeness and completes us in our oneness. With the kind and gentle eyes of Love we consciously envision the rock of our salvation. This is the world we see beyond the conflict and the condemnation of a world shamed by sin. A world where Creation remains as it was created, forever pure and good, tender and kind, Creation unified by equality and mutuality where nothing is above so nothing can be beneath.  We go to the vision that restores our sanity, which fills us with hope, which awakens us from the stupor of meat and butchery and the ongoing cycles of death and dismay.

With perfect faith and trust and love, we come to understand that what is sane is just and true and brings us peace and ends our worries. For no one can suffer for the Will of God to be fulfilled. To be saved from all that would hurt and betray the Son of God is the Father’s Will just as it is our own. All temptation to believe in the reality of this realm is to believe that God is insane; that He would create you and He would create me from stuff that is corruptible, that would destine us to be sinners, to oppose Him, to make a world that He created into a world that did the opposite of what He willed. Let us awaken to the impossibility of sin, the illusion of all that would separate us from Love and Life and Truth. For if God did not create something, it is nothing but an illusion, a lie, a mad belief that would keep us asleep in darkness dreaming of all that would oppose That which has no opposite and stands forever true, right, and good.  

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 25 The Justice of God VII The rock of salvation. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


1. The grace of God rests gently on forgiving eyes, and everything they look on speaks of Him to the beholder. He can see no evil; nothing in the world to fear, and no one who is different from himself. And as he loves them, so he looks upon himself with love and gentleness. He would no more condemn himself for his mistakes then damn another. He is not an arbiter of vengeance, nor a punisher of sin. The kindness of his sight rests on himself with all the tenderness it offers others. For he would only heal and only bless. And being in accord with what God wills, he has the power to heal and bless all those he looks on with the grace of God upon his sight.

2. Eyes become used to darkness, and the light of brilliant day seems painful to the eyes grown long accustomed to the dim effects perceived at twilight. And they turn away from sunlight and the clarity it brings to what they look upon. Dimness seems better; easier to see, and better recognized. Somehow the vague and more obscure seems easier to look upon; less painful to the eyes than what is wholly clear and unambiguous. Yet this is not what eyes are for, and who can say that he prefers the darkness and maintain he wants to see?

3. The wish to see calls down the grace of God upon your eyes and brings the gift of light that makes sight possible. Would you behold your brother? God is glad to have you look on him. He does not will your savior be unrecognized by you. Nor does He will that he remain without the function that He gave to him. Let him no more be lonely, for the lonely ones are those who see no function in the world for them to fill; no place where they are needed, and no aim which only they can perfectly fulfill.

4. Such is the Holy Spirit’s kind perception of specialness. His use of what you made, to heal instead of harm. To each He gives a special function in salvation he alone can fill; a part for only him. Nor is the plan complete until he finds his special function, and fulfills the part assigned to him, to make himself complete within a world where incompletion rules.

5. Here, where the laws of God do not prevail in perfect form, can he yet do one perfect thing and make one perfect choice. And by this act of special faithfulness to one perceived as other than himself, he learns the gift was given to himself, and so they must be one. Forgiveness is the only function meaningful in time. It is the means the Holy Spirit uses to translate specialness from sin into salvation. Forgiveness is for all. But when it rests on all it is complete, and every function of this world completed with it. Then is time no more. Yet while in time there is still much to do. And each must do what is allotted him, for on his part does all the plan depend. He has a special part in time for so he chose, and choosing it, he made it for himself. His wish was not denied but changed in form, to let it serve his brother and himself, and thus become a means to save instead of lose.

6. Salvation is no more than a reminder this world is not your home. Its laws are not imposed on you, its values are not yours. And nothing that you think you see in it is really there at all. This is seen and understood as each one takes his part in its undoing, as he did in making it. He has the means for either, as he always did. The specialness he chose to hurt himself did God appoint to be the means for his salvation, from the very instant that the choice was made. His special sin was made his special grace. His special hate became his special love.

7. The Holy Spirit needs your special function, that His may be fulfilled. Think not you lack a special value here. You wanted it, and it is given you. All that you made can serve salvation easily and well. The Son of God can make no choice the Holy Spirit cannot employ on his behalf, and not against himself. Only in darkness does your specialness appear to be attack. In light, you see it as your special function in the plan to save the Son of God from all attack, and let him understand that he is safe, as he has always been, and will remain in time and in eternity alike. This is the function given you for your brother. Take it gently, then, from your brother’s hand, and let salvation be perfectly fulfilled in you. Do this one thing, that everything be given you.[1]

In today’s devotional text we learn again the love and mercy and grace of God’s justice.  We asked God for that which opposed the mutuality and equality of His Creation and yet, because He loves us, because His mercy and grace would never hold a grudge against us or build a case against us for our failure to understand the Kingdom – we live in a dream of specialness and the result of specialness and separation.  For only in separation can specialness be – for if one part of Creation is more special than another part, one part seems the winner and the other the loser.  And how can this be when God created all for all and His Love cannot be divided or apart from Him? 

Holy Spirit brings forth the justice of God.  Never fear God’s justice, for God’s justice is the Father of the prodigal standing with open arms awaiting our return.  Not to dungeon, not to the whipping post, not to servanthood and enslavement but to Sonship!  Holy Spirit compels us to forgive one another and to love one another in our specialness.  And so all those things you did to me in the flesh, the times you ran away when you should have stayed close, the times you took advantage of my kindness, the things you took with no thought of return – I choose to see – not the darkness in you – but the light.  I will no longer focus upon all those things but instead right here and right now – in our separate bodies, in our perception of the space and time between us – I will call forth your beautiful laughter, the times you did show up, the ways in which you enriched my life and taught me exactly what I needed to learn.  I will choose this because I wish to see. I wish to call down the grace of God upon my eyes and yours so that we can see each other as God created us. 

And when I look at you with the grace of God, our Father’s heart is gladdened for this is His Will.  He cannot have fight cats in the kingdom.  He cannot have me thinking I am more special than you and you thinking that I want to be more special than you and retaliating against me.  This kind of thing just does not fly forever fun and free and holy for any part of Creation which would wish for specialness makes discord and discord leads to conflict and enmity, the opposites to the eternal virtues of love, peace, and joy. 

Our flesh is designed for the dim view.  In a world of fear, we seek out that which will inform us of danger, we seek out the hidden agenda, the ones who will gobble up our resources and take away our hard-won privileges, the ones who would oppose our specialness and dare to think that they are special, too!  We are programmed to be suspicious toward that which is tender, compassionate, and gentle.  We would rather take up arms than turn them into ploughshares!  Human eyes can pretend they look for peace, love, and joy, but this is not what they are for and therefore the reality of God is invisible to them, the Vision of Christ is a joke at best, a downright call to viciousness of every kind. 

But when we really want to see!  The grace of God opens our eyes.  We can see each other for what we really are.  I look on you and I no longer see someone who is out to take me to the cleaners!  I look on you and I no longer see the meanness, spite, and jealousy that had left me in despair of ever loving you again!  I look on you and the scowl you bore toward me has lifted from your brow!  The little digs and subtle betrayals, the things you told others about me, the way you blabbed my secrets and took joy in my sorrow and disappointments – all gone.  I recognize you as my savior, as Christ, as Son of God.  When I see you through the grace of God, I would not dream of letting us be lonely for each other.  I would not dream of withholding my love, affection, and devotion.  I would not dream of bringing up your past and rubbing it in your face to keep you from rising to the place where you belong. 

From the moment we chose specialness, God gave us the special function of salvation to all of those we share a special relationship with.  For salvation is merely the reminder that this world is not our home.  As soon as we realize this, as soon as we are willing to look upon it without fear and timidity, when we realize what we have brought upon ourselves and take responsibility, as soon as we begin to understand in the least little bit that this world and all it holds is simply not the truth about anything – we take our special part in its undoing.  All that opposed the truth is healed by God’s grace and love – already. 

Time is a sticky, tricky thing and yet Holy Spirit uses time to teach us all we need to know to be released from it.  And so in time, the dreams of specialness and separation are exchanged for the final dream – the end of dreams.  For when I forgive you your humanity, and you forgive me mine, the peace that comes to us comes to all.  And in the peace we have established, the love and joy of Sonship awakens us from time to our forever Home in God.   

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 25 The justice of God. VI The special function. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons, visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM CHAPTER 25 THE JUSTICE OF GOD V. The State of Sinlessness

ACIM Chapter 25.V. The State of Sinlessness

1. The state of sinlessness is merely this: The whole desire to attack is gone, and so there is no reason to perceive the Son of God as other than he is. The need for guilt is gone because it has no purpose and is meaningless without the goal of sin. Attack and sin are bound as one illusion, each the calls and aim and justifier of the other. Each is meaningless, alone, but seems to draw a meaning from the other. Each depends upon the other for whatever sense it seems to have. And no one could believe in one unless the other were the truth, for each attest the other must be true.

2. Attack makes Christ your enemy, and God, along with Him. Must you not be afraid with “enemies” like these? And must you not be fearful of yourself? For you have hurt yourself and made your self your “enemy.” And now you must believe you are not you, but something alien to yourself and “something else,” a “something” to be feared instead of loved. Who would attack whatever he perceives as wholly innocent? And who, because he wishes to attack, can fail to think he must be guilty to maintain the wish, while wanting innocence? For who could see the Son of God is innocent and wish him dead? Christ stands before you each time you look upon your brother. He has not gone because your eyes are closed. But what is there to see? By searching for your Savior, seeing Him through sightless eyes?

3. It is not Christ you see by looking thus. It is the “enemy,” confused with Christ, you look upon. And hate because there is no sin in him for you to see. Nor do you hear his plaintive call, unchanged in content in whatever form the call is made, that you unite with him, and join with him in innocence and peace. And yet, beneath the ego’s senseless shrieks, such is the call that God has given him, that you might hear in him, his call to you, an answer by returning unto God what is His own.

4, The Son of God asks only this of you; that you return to him what is his due, that you may share in it with him. Alone does neither have it. So must it remain useless to both. Together, it will give to each an equal strength to save the other and save himself along with him. Forgiven by you, your Savior offers you salvation. Condemned by you, he offers death to you. In everyone you see but the reflection of what you choose to have him be to you. If you decide against his proper function, the only one he has in truth, you are depriving him of all the joy he would have found if he fulfilled the role God gave to him. But think not Heaven is lost to him alone. Nor can it be regained unless the way is shown to him through you, that you may find it, walking by his side.

5. It is no sacrifice that he be saved, for by his freedom will you gain your own. To let his function be fulfilled is but the means to let yours be. And so you walk toward Heaven, or toward hell, but not alone. How beautiful his sinlessness will be when you perceive it! And how great will be your joy, when he is free to offer you the gift of sight God gave to him for you! He has no need but this; that you allow him freedom to complete the task God gave to him. Remember, but this; That what he does you do, along with him. And as you see him, so do you define the function he will have for you, until you see him differently and let him be what God appointed that he be to you.

6. Against the hatred that the Son of God may cherish toward himself, is God believed to be without the power to save what He created from the pain of hell. But in the love, he shows himself, is God made free to let His Will be done. In your brother you see the picture of your own belief in what the Will of God must be for you. In your forgiveness, will you understand His Love for you; through your attack believe He hates you, thinking Heaven must be hell. Look once again upon your brother, not without the understanding that he is the way to Heaven or to hell, as you perceive him. But forgot not this; the role you give to him as given you, and you will walk the way you pointed out to him because it is your judgment on yourself.[1]

We come to our own state of purity, innocence, and eternal goodness by our willingness to see past the body of our brother to his purity, innocence, and eternal goodness. When we see each other in our mutuality, in our equality, in our love for and striving for God – we are naturally drawn to love another, to be Christ to one another, to be kind and merciful and understanding.  We are not here to make fun, to encourage discord, to take delight in the shame and sorrow of our brothers.  While we are not here to abet others in their martyrdom, in their self-pity, in their fear of God, and beliefs in sin and sacrifice, we are not here to rant and rave, point fingers of blame, and condemn them either!

We are here to love our brothers, to uphold them in tender regard, to forgive them their humanity, to see in their unruliness, their blabbermouths, their showy ways, and flagrant self-promotion only the Christ in them.  This is a conscious choice, a decision that I make about you, and you make about me.  I am not here to judge you nor are you here to judge me.  This simply is not our job. When you see an area of possible improvement for my life, and you are led by your holiness to help me, call me to mind in the holy instant and let that which joins my mind with yours inform me of the lack you see in me. 

In our Mind we know Everything, we have Everything, we are Everything for we are joined with God and all that is.  When we meet there, there is no “but.”  There is no, “Yes, you are good at this, but here is what you need to do to be better.”  For when we meet in the holy instant that kind of thing goes away for what you see in me will be made apparent to you as what you are blind to in yourself.  Correct it in yourself and the “but” you have with me goes away.  It is sweet, this holiness, for there is no shame in it, there is no meanness, smugness, or jealousy in any form. 

Behold each other in the flesh, and we will be in a state of blindness to our oneness.  I will see you as someone I need to correct, someone I need to guard against, someone who may be ahead of me or behind me but never by my side as part of me and as one with me.  My interests will be my own interests peppered with delusional attempts to make me seem more helpful, caring, and willing to sacrifice than others.  I will kid myself about my superior understanding of our spiritual path and set myself up as guru or master, where I am the big cheese, and you are the little cheeseballs who have nothing to teach me!  If I do not recognize you, and you fail to recognize me, as savior, brother, and friend, we may think we are walking toward Heaven, but we walk in hell together – in our own state of separateness, walking alone, but never arriving anywhere.

In our holiness we are not competing with one another for more stars in our crown.  We are not asking to sit on the right hand of God.  We are not asking for any special favors.  Popularity means nothing to us in our holiness for how can we hope to be more popular than our brothers whom we love and share eternal mutuality and happiness?  We do not play games of “I’ll like your stuff and you like mine!”  This is a worldly game that distracts us from our God-given love and trust in one another that has nothing to do with followers, stats, or how many people hang on our every word.  To get caught up in this is unworthy of our Sonship, for my love for you and your love for me is a given and comes from beyond the world we see. 

We are called to do our work, to share our talents, to see our brothers as Christ.  To return to God is to be committed only to this.  It is the only thing to desire; it is the only thing worth doing in the world.  I give this because it was given me; I point it out that I may follow this myself!   There is no less vigilance required from me than from you, but the practice of it, makes perfect, and in perfection there is rest from all the wearying triteness in the world. 

Let us return to God what is His due. You love me and I love you.

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 25 The justice of God. V. The state of sinlessness. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons, visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM – Chapter 25. IV – The Light You Bring

1. Minds that are joined and recognize they are, can feel no guilt. For they cannot attack, and they rejoice that this is so, seeing their safety in this happy fact. Their joy is in the innocence they see. And thus they seek for it because it is their purpose to behold it and rejoice. Everyone seeks for what will bring him joy as he defines it. It is not the aim, as such, that varies. Yet it is the way in which the aim is seen that makes the choice of means inevitable, and beyond the hope of change. Unless the aim is changed. And then the means are chosen once again, as what will bring rejoicing as defined another way and sought for differently.

2. Perception’s basic law could thus be said, “You will rejoice at what you see because you see it to rejoice.” And while you think that suffering and sin will bring you joy, so long, will they be there for you to see. Nothing is harmful or beneficent apart from what you wish. It is your wish that makes it what it is in its effects on you. Because you chose it as a means to gain these same effects, believing them to be the bringers of rejoicing and of joy. Even in Heaven, does this law obtain. The Son of God creates to bring him joy, sharing his Father’s purpose in his own creation, that his joy might be increased, and God’s along with his.

3. You maker of a world that is not so, take rest and comfort in another world where peace abides. This world you bring with you to all the weary eyes and tired hearts that look on sin and beat its sad refrain. From you can come their rest. From you can rise a world they will rejoice to look upon, and where their hearts are glad. In you there is a vision that extends to all of them and covers them in gentleness and light. And in this widening world of light, the darkness that they thought was there is pushed away, until it is but distant shadows, far away, not long to be remembered as the sun shines them to nothingness. And all their “evil” thoughts and “sinful” hopes, their dreams of guilt and merciless revenge, and every wish to hurt and kill and die, will disappear before the sun you bring.

4. Would you not do this for the Love of God? And for yourself? For think what it would do for you. Your “evil” thoughts that haunt you now will seem increasingly remote and far away from you. And they go farther and farther off because the sun in you has risen. That they may be pushed away before the light. They linger for awhile, a little while, in twisted forms too far away for recognition, and are gone forever. And in the sunlight, you will stand in quiet, in innocence and wholly unafraid. And from you will the rest you found extend, so that your peace can never fall away and leave you homeless. Those who offer peace to everyone have found a home in Heaven the world cannot destroy. For it is large enough to hold the world within its peace.

5. In you is all of Heaven. Every leaf that falls is given life in you. Each bird that ever sang will sing again in you. And every flower that ever bloomed has saved its perfume and its loveliness for you. What name can supersede the Will of God? And of His Son, that Heaven be restored to him for whom it was created as his only home? Nothing before and nothing after it. No other place; no other state nor time. Nothing beyond nor nearer. Nothing else. In any form. This can you bring to all the world, and all the thoughts that entered it and were mistaken for a little while. How better could your own mistakes be brought to truth than by your willingness to bring the light of Heaven with you, as you walk beyond the world of darkness into light?[1]

In our devotional text today, Jesus emphasizes the Sonship’s mission in bringing light to the world.  It is with great peace and love and joy we accept the justice of God for God’s justice is one of love and light and mercy.  God’s justice does not smile upon one brother and cast another brother into a lake of fire.  God’s justice smiles upon one brother and extends His love, light, and mercy to all.  There is no specialness in God and in the five paragraphs from our text today we learn to look honestly at our own mistaken desire for specialness and bring it to truth.  For when we acknowledge that we sought our happiness in our desire to stand out and above everybody else, to ask that the sun shine upon us and not give a rip if it shown on our brothers, when we prayed selfish prayers that saved only us and the ones we call “ours” – we were praying to an alien god, a god that plays favorites, a god that would lead us into the wilderness and toy with us – pretending to favor us and all the while mocking our pathetic desires to be special. 

Let us get real with ourselves today and look honestly at every dark spot in our minds.  In your devotional practice take time to reflect that at the core of all bitterness, disappointment, pain, fear, and sickness is the desire to be special.  Let us realize that we have chased after that which was not to attuned to love, but rather opposed it.  Whether we sing this song of specialness in key major or minor, whether we play the game of specialness with our spouses or houses, our talents, our bodies, our kids, our careers, or our religions, whether we do it with a humble face or one that is proud and haughty – the drive to be special will entrap us in ongoing death cycles of darkness, disease, and despair.  For the song of specialness is a funeral song to love and brotherhood, and the game of specialness does not end until somebody is defeated.  And what defeats our brother, defeats all of us. 

Awakening to the Christ Mind ushers in the Second Coming of Christ.  The light comes on in you and the light comes on in me.  The light of the world does not fly away to Heaven and let the world burn.  The Light of Christ shines in our minds to free us from our opposition to the natural, God-given love and devotion we have toward the Brotherhood of Christ, the Sonship of God, toward all of Creation.  

In you and in me is all of Heaven.  It is our Mind of Christ, our Higher Mind where our holiness and our spirit abides forever.  The Christ Mind is not a spooky, ethereal, weirdo thing that we should be afraid of – for it is the Mind of Sonship.  The Christ Mind in me and the Christ Mind in you find it no hardship to love one another.  For we are joined.  I may find you irritating in the flesh.  You may talk too much, laugh too much, eat too much.  Instead of being a big girl and communicating your needs, you may expect me to guess what you need and give me the silent treatment when I fail to read your mind.  You may be a pouter or a whiner, you may chew with your mouth open, clog my toilet, dribble on the toilet seat.  There are all kinds of things you can do in the flesh that will absolutely drive me bonkers!  But in our holiness, we are joined, and I can never attack your holiness nor you mine.  Everything you do in the flesh is forgivable.  I may not want to sit across from you at the table if you chew with your mouth open.  I may ask you to limit the amount of toilet paper you use so you do not clog the toilet.  I may ask you to stop being such a baby, or to take greater care of your personal hygiene, or work on your manners, even as you may ask me to stop being so coarse, stop thinking I know it all, refrain from going on rants, or whatever else I am doing or saying that grates on your nerves. 

While our humanity can be used as an arena to practice our holiness, to come to the end of our desire for specialness, to become a Light that draws the Brotherhood back to the Kingdom of peace and joy and love, our past foibles and failings will never be held against us, for this is not God’s Creation and it is already over – each moment in time whisks away the previous one now and forever.  While the ego’s use of time is to entrap us forever in ongoing cycles of melodrama, conflict, and fear; God’s use of time is to teach us to be merciful and gracious, to love, respect, and devote ourselves to one another in the ideal of Brotherhood in which we find our very Being.

For our minds hold all of Heaven.  Every birdsong, every flower, every leaf that ever fell – is ours in the Sonship.  We give up the meaningless pursuit of nothing which leads nowhere, for the Everything of God which is forever. This is our Light, our very Being – and it is only ours when we extend this Thought to every part of Creation, bar none.  

[1]A Course in Miracles. Chapter 25 The justice of God. IV The light you bring. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM – CHAPTER 25 THE JUSTICE OF GOD III. Perception and Choice

ACIM Chapter 25 III Perception and Choice

1. To the extent to which you value guilt, to that extent will you perceive a world in which attack is justified. To the extent to which you recognize that guilt is meaningless, to that extent will you perceive attack cannot be justified. This is in accord with perception’s fundamental law: you see what you believe is there, and you believe it there because you want it there. Perception has no other law than this. The rest but stems from this, to hold it up and offer it support. This is perception’s form, adapted to this world, of God’s more basic law; that love creates itself, and nothing but itself.

2. God’s laws do not obtain directly to a world perception rules, for such a world could not have been created by the Mind to which perception has no meaning. Yet are His laws reflected everywhere. Not that the world where this reflection is, is real at all. Only because His Son believes it is, and from His Son’s belief He could not let Himself be separate entirely. He could not enter His Son’s insanity with him, but He could be sure His sanity went there with him, so he could not be lost forever in the madness of his wish.

3. Perception rests on choosing; knowledge does not. Knowledge has but one law because it has but one Creator. But this world has two who made it, and they do not see it as the same. To each it has a different purpose, and to each it is a perfect means to serve the goal for which it is perceived. For specialness, it is the perfect frame to set it off; the perfect battleground to wage its wars, the perfect shelter for illusions which it would make real. Not one but it holds in its perception; not one but can be fully justified.

4. There is another Maker of the world, the simultaneous Corrector of the mad belief that anything could be established and maintained without some link that kept it still within the laws of God; not as the law itself upholds the universe as God created it, but in some form adapted to the need the Son of God believes he has. Corrected error is the error’s end. And thus has God protected still His Son, even in error.

5. There is another purpose in the world that error made, because it has another Maker who can reconcile its goal with His Creator’s purpose. In His perception of the world, nothing is seen but justifies forgiveness and the sight of perfect sinlessness. Nothing arises but is met with instant and complete forgiveness. Nothing remains an instant, to obscure the sinlessness that shines unchanged, beyond the pitiful attempts of specialness to put it out of mind, where it must be, and light the body up instead of it. The lamps of Heaven are not for mind to choose to see them where it will. If it elects to see them elsewhere from their home, as if they lit a place where they could never be, then must the Maker of the world correct your error, lest you remain in darkness where the lamps are not.

6. Everyone here has entered darkness, yet no one has entered it alone. Nor need he stay more than an instant. For he has come with Heaven’s Help within him, ready to lead him out of darkness into light at anytime. The time he chooses can be any time, for help is there, awaiting by his choice. And when he chooses to avail himself of what is given him, then will he see each situation that he thought before was means to justify his anger turned to an event which justifies his love. He will hear plainly that the calls to war he heard before are really calls to peace. He will perceive that where he gave attack is but another altar where he can, with equal ease and far more happiness, bestow forgiveness. And he will reinterpret all temptation as just another chance to bring him joy.

7. How can a misperception be a sin? Let all your brother’s errors be to you nothing except a chance for you to see the workings of the Helper given you to see the world He made instead of yours. What, then, is justified? What do you want? For these two questions are the same. And when you see them as the same, your choice is made. For it is seeing them as one that brings release from the belief there are two ways to see. This world has much to offer to your peace, and many chances to extend your own forgiveness. Such its purpose is, to those who want to see peace and forgiveness to descend on them and offer them the light.

8. The Maker of the world of gentleness has perfect power to offset the world of violence and hate that seems to stand between you and His gentleness. It is not there in His forgiving eyes. And therefore it need not be there in yours. Sin is the fixed belief perceptions cannot change. What has been damned is damned and damned forever, being forever unforgivable. If then, it is forgiven, sin’s perception must have been wrong. And thus is change made possible. The Holy Spirit, too, sees what He sees as far beyond the chance of change. But on His vision sin cannot encroach, for sin has been corrected by His sight. And thus it must have been an error, not a sin. For what it claimed could never be, has been. Sin is attacked by punishment, and so preserved. But to forgive it is to change its state from error into truth.

9. The Son of God could never sin, but he can wish for what would hurt him. And he has the power to think he can be hurt. What could this be except a misperception of himself? Is this a sin or a mistake, forgivable or not? Does he need help or condemnation? Is it your purpose that he be saved or damned? Forgetting not that what he is to you will make this choice your future? For you make it now, the instant when all time becomes a means to reach a goal. Make, then, your choice. But recognize that in this choice the purpose of the world you see is chosen and will be justified.[1]

Today we learn that the justice of God is reflected even in the perceptual world through our perceptions of one another.  God’s plan of salvation is a beautiful way for the Sonship to be restored to the place of trust and fellowship, devotion and love.  For how I perceive you is how I will be perceived, and how you perceive me is how you will be perceived.  Once we learn this lesson in gentleness all fear has been removed from our minds, for we will recognize our power and our glory in the mercy and forgiveness we extend to one another.

As long as I want to hold you forever accountable for the wrongs you have seemed to commit against me and mine, I will damn myself along with you.  But the moment I offer you tender mercy and forgiveness, we are saved in our mutuality and God’s love.  I must be willing to believe that God created me invulnerable to attack with no need of defense from the Sonship.  My mind must be fully converted to the concept that what is good is truth; what is beautiful is truth, what is everlasting is truth.  I must believe that my safety and security, my certain happiness and everlasting peace is established now and forever and no matter what mistakes you may make toward making this not my truth, those mistakes do not define you.  For you are one with me and my forgiveness of you sets us both free from the murky world of opposition and opposites to truth. 

When we look back over our lives, even up to yesterday, or this morning, or up to this very moment, we will find one opportunity after the other to set ourselves free from the bondage of sin.  It sounds easy to forgive, to let go of, to offer mercy and understanding toward our brother for all the ways in which he hurt us, seemed to set us back, seemed to want to keep us in a place beneath him instead of beside him.  But as easy as forgiveness is for the Mind of Christ within us; forgiveness is not easy for the flesh. 

Our flesh is designed to manipulate us, to control us, to make us vie for resources, for attention and praise, for competing and comparing.  In the unnatural, dark nature of the ego-made world, females compete over males and males go to the death competing for females. This is not just regulated for reproductive relationships, but also for pairing relationships of all kinds. There is always someone more attractive, smarter, stronger, richer, or more ruthless that can come along and steal our mates and leave us sobbing in our lonely beds.  That is just the way it is set up here and while this is a call for at the very least a grudge and resentment, years spent complaining about it and making up stories about it to drive even our dearest friends and our therapists to drink – many times in our anger, bitterness and spite, we want to hurt or even kill those who have hurt us in this way. 

This is not sin.  It is forgivable.  It is the way of flesh and bone.  We are driven by chemicals and electricity.  We are going to have a tough time of it overcoming the dark natures of the ego’s symbol – not because we are evil, not because the body is evil, but because the very nature of specialness cannot bear not to be special.  The desire to be special is what got us in this hot mess and the desire to be special keeps us in this hot mess.  We do not need another hell for this realm is hellish enough already! 

Jesus asks us to make a conscious choice to overcome the perceptual world and our desire to be special and offer mercy and forgiveness.  We cannot do this until we see that no call for sin and punishment is ever justified, that if we want peace and love and joy, if we want to heal the Sonship and escape the beastly realm of opposition and opposites, ignorance and ignobility – we must undo all thoughts of sin and shame and see every opportunity as a means to practice forgiveness, to practice the mercy of God, to see our “enemies” as our saviors.

We cannot do this in the flesh.  We can only do this from the High Mind of Christ.  We must want it, we must reach for it, we must see the low mind for what it is and turn our backs upon it, for it will call to us, it will clamor, it will whisper insidious temptations to succumb to its dark charms and mean-spirited tricks.  For as long as we engage in its petty conflicts, if we fail to communicate in honesty, courage, and love, if we hold one thought toward another that is not trusting, gracious, and merciful, the low mind has us ensnared in its smallness and confined in its dark meandering corridors that lead nowhere. 

The justice of God gives us an uncomplicated way out of this seemingly hopeless muddle.  It should be easy and when it is not, we are often tempted to throw in the towel and say, “I just can’t do this!”  But you can and you will – and so will I.  We are on the path; we have come this far; we have seen too many peaceful, practical results in following the gentle instruction offered by our devoted Teacher to turn back now.  We will use every opportunity to forgive, to refuse to keep a dark spot in our mind toward those whose “sins” would obscure our peace, cloud our beautiful minds with thoughts of specialness and hell, and defeat our purpose. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 25 The justice of God. III. Perception and choice. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons, visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM – CHAPTER 25 THE JUSTICE OF GOD II. The Savior From the Dark

1. Is it not evident that what the body’s eyes perceive fills you with fear? Perhaps you think you find a hope of satisfaction there. Perhaps you fancy to attain some peace and satisfaction in the world as you perceive it. Yet it must be evident the outcome does not change. Despite your hopes and fancies, always does despair result. And there is no exception, nor will there ever be. The only value that the past can hold is that you learn it gave you no rewards which you would want to keep. For only thus will you be willing to relinquish it, and have it gone forever.

2. Is it not strange that you should cherish still some hope of satisfaction from the world you see? In no respect, at any time or place, has anything but fear and guilt been your reward. How long is needed for you to realize the chance of change in this respect is hardly worth delaying change that might result in better outcome? For one thing is sure; the way you see, and long have seen, gives no support to base your future hopes, and no suggestions of success at all. To place your hopes where no hope lies must make you hopeless. Yet is this hopelessness your choice, while you would seek for hope where none is ever found.

3. Is it not also true that you have found some hope apart from this; some glimmering,- inconstant, wavering, yet dimly seen,- that hopefulness is warranted on grounds that are not in this world? And yet your hope that they may still be here prevents you still from giving up the hopeless and unrewarding task you set yourself. Can it make sense to hold the fixed belief that there is reason to uphold pursuit of what has always failed, on grounds that it will suddenly succeed and bring what it has never brought before?

4. Its past has failed. Be glad that it is gone within your mind, to darken what is there. Take not the form for content, for the form is but a means for content. And the frame is but a means to hold the picture up, so that it can be seen. A frame that hides the picture has no purpose. It cannot be a frame if it is what you see. Without the picture is the frame without its meaning. Its purpose is to set the picture off, and not itself.

5. Who hangs an empty frame upon a wall and stands before it, deep in reverence, as if a masterpiece were there to see? Yet if you see your brother as a body, it is but this you do. The masterpiece that God has set within this frame is all there is to see. The body holds it for a while, without obscuring it in any way. Yet what God has created needs no frame, for what He has created He supports and frames within Himself. His masterpiece He offers you to see. And would you rather see the frame instead of this? And see the picture not at all?

6. The Holy Spirit is the frame God set around the part of Him that you would see as separate. Yet its frame is joined to its Creator, One with Him and with His masterpiece. This is its purpose, and you do not make the frame into the picture when you choose to see it in its place. The frame that God has given it but serves His purpose, not yours apart from His. It is your separate purpose that obscures the picture and cherishes the frame instead of it. Yet God has set His masterpiece within a frame that will endure forever, when yours has crumbled into dust.  But think you not the picture is destroyed in any way. What God creates is safe from all corruption, unchanged and perfect in eternity.

7. Accept God’s frame instead of yours, and you will see the masterpiece. Look at its loveliness, and understand the Mind that thought it, not in flesh and bones, but in a frame as lovely as itself. Its holiness lights up the sinlessness the frame of darkness hides and casts a veil of light across the picture’s face which but reflects the light that shines from it to its Creator. Think not this face was ever darkened because you saw it in a frame of death. God kept it safe that you might look on it and see the holiness that He has given it.

8. Within the darkness see the savior from the dark and understand your brother as his Father’s Mind shows him to you. He will step forth from darkness as you look on him, and you will see the dark no more. The darkness touched him not, nor you who brought him forth for you to look upon. His sinlessness but pictures yours. His gentleness becomes your strength, and both will gladly look within, and see the holiness that must be there because of what you looked upon in him. He is the frame in which your holiness is set, and what God gave him must be given you. However much he overlooks the masterpiece in him and sees only a frame of darkness, it is still your only function to behold in him what he sees not. And in this seeing is the vision shared that looks on Christ instead of seeing death.

9. How could the Lord of Heaven not be glad if you appreciate His masterpiece? What could He do but offer thanks to you who love His Son as He does? Would He not make known to you His Love, if you but share His praise of what He loves? God cherishes creation as the perfect Father that He is. And so His joy is made complete when any part of Him joins in His praise, to share His joy. This brother is His perfect gift to you. And He is glad and thankful when you thank His perfect Son for being what he is. And all His thanks and gladness shine on you who would complete His joy, along with Him. And thus is yours completed. Not one ray of darkness can be seen by those who will to make their Father’s happiness complete, and theirs along with His. The gratitude of God Himself is freely offered to everyone who shares His purpose. It is not His Will to be alone. And neither is it yours.

10. Forgive your brother, and you cannot separate yourself from him nor from his Father. You need no forgiveness, for the wholly pure have never sinned. Give, then, what He has given you, that you may see His Son as one, and thank his Father as He thanks you. Nor believe that all His praise is given not to you. For what you give is His, and giving it, you learn to understand His gift to you. And give the Holy Spirit what He offers unto the Father and the Son alike. Nothing has power over you except His Will and yours, which but extends His Will. It was for this you were created, and your brother with you and at one with you.

11. You and your brother are the same, as God Himself is One and not divided in His Will. And you must have one purpose since He gave the same to both of you. His Will is brought together as you join in will, that you be made complete by offering completion to your brother. See not in him the sinfulness he sees but give him honor that you may esteem yourself and him. To you and your brother is given the power of salvation, that escape from darkness into light be yours to share; that you may see as one what never has been separate, nor apart from all God’s Love as given equally.[1] 

God’s Will for us is to love one another, to enjoy one another, to have fun and adventure in creating and Creation, to harbor goodwill and a spirit of appreciation and helpfulness toward one another.  We find our salvation in the spirit of Brotherhood for when I look past your body and see the beautiful masterpiece that God created, I see past the darkness of flesh and blood, the predatory nature of this world, the doom and certain death that is in store for all of humanity – and I see your divinity.  I see all that fills me with happiness and glee.  And seeing you in all your glory, I see our oneness!

In your personal devotional practice today, read over or listen to this text quietly and give it all the time you need to let each paragraph’s meaning sink into your consciousness.  Linger with these words and contemplate the Will of God.  As we give up our attachment to the flesh and turn to God, our will is freed from enslavement to the idea that we were born to die, that we will never know for certain where we came from or why we are here, that we must work very hard and sacrifice very much to get even a passing scrap of security, pleasure, or bliss.  As we give up our fear of God and are filled with love and appreciation for God, we learn that all that makes us happy – not for just a little bit here and there – but for always – comes from our Father, Whose Will is to make us happy. 

And what makes us happy? What is the Father’s Will for us?  That we be one with our brothers.  That we no longer harbor hatred and ill will.  That we put down our weapons and embrace one another in love.  That we stop gossiping and indulging in the evil reports.  That we appreciate and devote ourselves to one another as we devote ourselves to God – for this is God’s Will and God’s Will is to make us happy.  When I look at you, God’s Will is for me to see past your body and to consciously choose to see you and relate to you in mercy and total forgiveness of your humanity and genuine faith and complete trust in your divinity – in your kindness, your gentleness, your goodness, and fun.  And when I do this, the dark veil is lifted and we are free to work and play together, to laugh and sing, to learn and teach, to roam throughout all Creation in perfect accord, to tumble through the universe in glee and delight. This is our oneness, when and where the darkness of loneliness, fear, separation, and despair dissipate in the light of God’s all-encompassing Love.   

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 25 The justice of God. II. The savior from the dark. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons, visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM – Chapter 25 I The Link to Truth

1. It cannot be that it is hard to do the task that Christ appointed you to do, since it is He Who does it. And in the doing of it will you learn the body merely seems to be the means to do it. For the mind is His. And so it must be yours. His Holiness directs the body through the mind at one with Him. and you are manifest unto your holy brother, as he to you. Here is the meeting of the holy Christ unto himself; nor any differences perceived to stand between the aspects of His Holiness, which meet and join and raise Him to His Father, whole and pure and worthy of His everlasting Love.

2. How can you manifest the Christ in you except to look on holiness and see Him there? Perception tells you you are manifest in what you see. Behold the body, and you will believe that you are there. And everybody that you look upon reminds you of yourself; your sinfulness, your evil and, above all, your death. And would you not despise the one who tells you this, and seek his death instead? The message and the messenger are one. And you must see your brother as yourself. Framed in his body you will see your sinfulness, wherein you stand condemned. Set in his holiness, the Christ in him proclaims Himself as you.

3. Perception is a choice of what you want yourself to be; the world you want to live in, and the state in which you think your mind will be content and satisfied. It chooses where you think your safety lies, at your decision. It reveals yourself to you as you would have you be. And always is it faithful to your purpose, from which it never separates, nor gives the slightest witness on to anything the purpose in your mind upholdeth not. Perception is a part of what it is your purpose to behold, for means and end are never separate. And thus you learn what seems to have a life apart has none.

4. You are the means for God; not separate, nor with a life apart from His. His life is manifest in you who are His Son. Each aspect of Himself is framed in holiness and perfect purity, in love celestial and so complete it wishes only that it may release all that it looks upon unto Itself. Its radiance shines through each body that it looks upon, and brushes all its darkness into light merely by looking past it to the light. The veil is lifted through its gentleness, and nothing hides the face of Christ from its beholders. You and your brother stand before Him now, to let Him draw aside the veil that seems to keep you separate and apart.

5. Since you believe that you are separate, Heaven presents Itself to you as separate, too. Not that it is in truth, but that the link that has been given you to join the truth may reach to you through what you understand. Father and Son and Holy Spirit are as one, as all your brothers join as one in truth. Christ and His Father never have been separate, and Christ abides within your understanding, in the part of you that shares His Father’s Will. The Holy Spirit links the other part – the tiny, mad desire to be separate, different and special – to the Christ, to make the oneness clear to what is really one.  In this world this is not understood, but can be taught.

6. The Holy Spirit serves Christ’s purpose in your mind, so that the aim of specialness can be corrected where the error lies. Because His purpose still is one with both the Father and the Son, He knows the Will of God and what you really will. But this is understood by mind perceived as one, aware that it is one, and so experienced. It is the Holy Spirit’s function to teach you how this oneness is experienced, what you must do that it can be experienced, and where you should go to do it.

7. All this takes note of time and place as if they were discrete, for while you think that part of you is separate, the concept of a Oneness joined as One is meaningless. It is apparent that a mind so split could never be the Teacher of a Oneness which unites all things within Itself. And so What is within this mind, and does unite all things together, must be its Teacher. Yet must It use the language that this mind can understand, in the condition in which it thinks it is. And it must use all learning to transfer illusions to the truth, taking all false ideas of what you are, and leading you beyond them to the truth that is beyond them. All this can very simply be reduced to this:

What is the same cannot be different, and what is one cannot have separate parts.[1]

The mind of Christ is our true Being; our one and only link to the truth.  When we speak of the Christ mind, or the mind in general, we are not referring to our human brain with its constantly firing neurons and synapses, controlled by chemicals and electrical systems of functioning.  The mind is beyond our gray matter!  Invisible to the human eye, undiscerned by our finest microscopes, our Being is beyond comprehending from a human perspective.  For our Being is the meeting place of Sonship, of Christ.  Our Godhood is found in our Being which is as whole and pure and worthy of the everlasting Love that belongs to God, and is God Himself.   

Only when we can look upon our Being will we be able to manifest Christ.  Our human perceptions inform us of our human lives, we seem to be manifest in what we see with our eyes, smell with our nose, feel with our senses, and so forth.  When I look on your body, I see a man or a woman, a Greek or a Jew, I see you as black or white, I see you as rich or poor, or somewhere in between in my classifications of who you are.  I am looking at your body.  I am looking at the clothes you wear, the car you drive, the religious icons that you wear or dangle from your rearview mirror!  When I look at you, I am reminded of my own self.  For instance, when I see your gray hair, your flabby thighs, your double chin, your weaknesses and peevishness – I will be reminded of my own aging process, my own impending death, and this will not endear you to me!  For the one who gives me the message about myself is the message itself.  What I see in you informs me about who I am, the thoughts I hold toward you are the thoughts I hold toward myself. 

We can deny this.  I can look upon your sins, your frailty, your craven lusts and gluttony and tell myself how happy I am that I am better than you are. I can feel sorry for you and come up with all kinds of excuses for why you are drawn to all that is evil and pointless and poor while I am drawn to all that is good, purposeful, and enriching, but no matter how long I can keep up this pretense, the fact is this:  Your humanity informs my humanity.  We are all in the same boat – it takes little more than a tiny misfiring of the neurons, a nip from a rabid dog, a traumatic childhood experience, a bump on the head, a prescription mix-up, and we are all capable of violence, murder, and treason.  When I see you as a body, I see you condemned, sitting on death row awaiting your turn to die.  There is absolutely no positive way to look upon you when I see you as a body – it will not matter how pretty you are, how sexy, how rich, how famous.  One hundred years from now, you will be history. Over. Done with. Kaput. 

Do not be dismayed by this.  For the bright side is the only side of this which is true – for you are not your body, you are the Mind of Christ, your Being is whole and holy, and the Christ, which is the Sonship is one with you.  This is no cause for worry that you will lose your precious individuality. Your precious individuality is a trite little pesty thing that does not even exist.  It will only be large in your mind because you have done your best to set yourself apart and special from the rest of humanity and this is impossible.  We are all in the same boat with the same needs and the same delusions! 

To learn more about this we must spend some time with paragraph three.  We all have a perception of ourselves which sets us apart from one another.  This is based upon a choice about the kind of world we want to live in, the state of being which we think will make our minds happy and give our lives meaning and purpose.  Our perceptions will advise our safety and security concerns.  If I perceive the world as dangerous and full of ill will, I may feel it is my right to arm myself and die fighting for my right to do so.  If you perceive the world as dangerous and full of ill will, you may feel it is your right to take my arms away from me, to make me less dangerous to you – and thus you will make of me your enemy.  You may die trying to take my arms away from me.  Even though we both had the same perception of danger and ill-will, instead of banding together to make safe and secure, we will oppose each other in how we perceive to meet our safety and security measures.  As tragic as it may seem, there is no sin in this – we are here to learn in any way that teaches us the futility of specialness, the ultimate truth of Sonship.  When I arm myself against you, I am armed against myself.  When you lift up a hand to strike me, you strike yourself.  The means that we choose to reach our goal will always be the same as the goal itself.  Choose attack and defense, the goal will never be peace and goodwill but more attack and defense.  Choose love and goodwill, the goal will always be love and goodwill.  Means and end – always the same.  Until we learn this, we continue in the dreary rounds of karmic-based cycles. 

You are the means of God even as I am the means for God.  We are not separate; we cannot have a life apart from Him or from each other.  We are His Son – as one.  This is what we must choose to look for in each other, the radiance and perfection of God that links us to the truth about our Sonship.  This is a very gentle and kind approach that quietly sweeps aside the veil of differences that our humanity uses to obscure the face of Christ from each other.  For when I see the face of Christ in you and you see the face of Christ in me, we can no longer be kept apart by the differences and enmity that would come between us in the flesh. 

It behooves us to look closely upon the specialness that would keep us apart.  We must choose to give up our attachment to our female and our male parts, to our traditions that would make some the elect and others the sinners doomed to suffer the ongoing torments of hell, to our false status symbols that would distinguish some and extinguish others, to the idea of work ethic and those who “deserve” our help and those who do not.  Our humanity compels us to make hard choices; our Sonship compels us to make soft and gentle ones.  While we can bring the soft choices to our humanity and do our best to apply them here, they will never work in this realm; however, we will never be able to return to Sonship when our hearts and minds cherish the hard, corrupt, and special choices of this realm. 

This is the dilemma then of living in an illusion of separateness, for our true Identity is one of Heaven and not the world.  The Kingdom of God is within us and of us and for us, but how can we conceive of that when we think of each other as meaty, as predators, and dangerous to one another?  Christ abides in our understanding – in the part of us that never has been completely convinced that we are what we appear to be to one another, that shares the Father’s Will that we accept our brotherhood, our sweetness and goodwill to each other, our agreement and oneness in love and fellowship.  It is the Holy Spirit that links the two opposing frames of reference – the Holy Spirit abides in the Higher Mind of Christ and reveals the tiny, insane desire to be separate, different, and special for what it is.  So we can look upon it and see it – stark, puny, naked, shrieking its lies, its delusions, its madness and folly.  

We cannot understand this while we seem trapped inside the meaty, fleshy, blood mass of our human body, it is too uncomfortable, it makes us queasy and uneasy, we would drown ourselves in substances and welcome death rather than look upon this mass delusion, but we can be taught to look upon it with calmness, forgiveness, mercy, and strength.   

This is the function of Holy Spirit.  Holy Spirit corrects the goal of specialness simply by showing us exactly what specialness is – it is in the bloody mass of meat we would seek our precious individuality, our precious right to be “free” and master of our own little imaginary kingdom of nothingness.  Holy Spirit is not mean or timid or fearful in the face of our fleshy bits and opposition, for He knows us as we really are.  He knows us as Sons; He knows us for He is our reality and our place in God’s Kingdom.  Holy Spirit teaches us how this oneness is experienced, what we must do to experience this, and where we should go to have oneness. 

This may seem meaningless to you and if it does, do not worry for we are here to learn of oneness through our perceptions of the perceptual world.  If you are not ready for oneness yet this is no slur on your progress, this is no race to the finish line, there is no end date that will determine your eternal fate.  If the world is still your oyster, by all means enjoy your oyster until you learn what your oyster will teach you!  This Course is for those who have seen enough of the world, who have had enough of specialness.  We are ready to return to the oneness and unity of God.  A mind that is split between the world and the Kingdom of God cannot properly teach the about Oneness, but we are called to teach what we have learned so far.  This is the way we remember to rely upon one another, to accept each other in non-judgment and goodwill. Learning to trust in one another is part of restoring brotherhood and healing the Sonship.  When we use our language to convey spiritual concepts, we may seem clumsy and awkward, but we must use all learning to transfer illusions to truth.  Your efforts combined with my efforts, are efforts blessed by Holy Spirit, the sorting, translating, the results are up to Him.  Our goal is only to link to truth. A sincere welcome to the Holy Spirit suffices to reach this link. 

Let us pray:

“Holy Spirit, we call upon You to deliver us from all false ideas about what we are and lead us to the truth that is beyond perception.  For what is the same, cannot be different.  And what is one cannot have separate parts. Make this real to us in our perceptual world to  prepare us for our return to God. In the name of Christ, which makes us one.  Amen.”     

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 25 The justice of God. I The link to truth. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons, visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0



1. The Christ in you inhabits not a body. Yet He is in you. And thus, it must be that you are not within a body. What is within you cannot be outside. And it is certain that you cannot be apart from what is at the very center of your life. What gives you life cannot be housed in death. No more can you. Christ is within a frame of holiness whose only purpose is that He may be made manifest to those who know Him not, that He may call to them to come to Him and see Him where they thought their bodies were. Then will their bodies melt away, that they may frame His Holiness in them.

2. No one who carries Christ in him can fail to recognize Him everywhere. Except in bodies. And as long as he believes he is in a body, where he thinks he is he cannot be. And so he carries Him unknowingly, and does not make Him manifest. And thus, he does not recognize Him where he is. The son of man is not the risen Christ. Yet does the Son of God abide exactly where he is, and walks with him within his holiness, as plain to see as is his specialness set forth within his body

3. The body needs no healing. But the mind that thinks it is a body is sick indeed! And it is here that Christ sets forth the remedy. His purpose folds the body in His light and fills it with the Holiness that shines from him. And nothing that the body says or does but makes Him manifest. To those who know Him not it carries Him in gentleness and love, to heal their minds. Such is the mission that your brother has for you. And such it must be that your mission is for him.[1]

As we open up Chapter 25, Jesus makes it clear to us that Christ does not inhabit our bodies.  Christ is in us, but not in our bodies and neither are we!  Christ is at the center of our Being, and our Being is not a body, nor can it ever die.  Here we are being asked to accept and understand the distinction between our flesh and our Spirit and to accept the Sonship of God in place of our bodies.  Let them melt away in our recognition of the Christ in us. Let the Holiness that is the Christ in us shine without the obstruction of flesh and all the calls of the flesh. 

Christ is in us, and He is everywhere there is.  Our bodies are devices that evolved from a wish to separate from the oneness of God.  To separate from God, we must separate from Spirit, to separate from Spirit, we must have a physical body, a form in which to keep us separate.  And it is our identification with our body that hinders us from knowing Christ and making Him manifest in our life.

When I identify with my body my biggest concern is going to be about what I eat, what I wear, the bills I must pay, my house, my car, my roles as wife, mother, grandmother, writer, teacher, and friend.  My concerns will be about my health, my money, the state of my lawn and garden, the place I hold in the community and society at large.  The farthest thing that is going to be on my mind is Christ who will be little more than a figurehead in my mind, someone to pray to when I have a problem, someone to thank when things go my way, and someone to cast all my sins upon so I don’t have to worry about my tendency to be dishonest, to show-off, to be selfish, or to go on rants. 

Christ will be Someone who came and lived and walked on the water all those years ago.  He will reign on the right hand of God in Heaven.  Even though I say I have accepted Christ as my Savior and He lives in my heart, it will not mean too much to me as I go about my daily life thinking of myself as a body.  This does not make me a sinner, it simply makes me unaware that the body that I seem to live in is not me, that being a human is only an experience I seem to be having, that Christ in me represents the Sonship I have with God, and that my identification with flesh and blood is a perceptual delusion that keeps me unaware of the truth about me, about God, and about the Christ who is one with me. 

As long as I am ignorant of my true identity, I will not manifest Christ.  I will be troubled by all the ruckus in the world. I will judge and condemn others who do not look like me, smell like me, and believe in the same dogma and doctrines that I believe in.  I will live in fear of robbers and rapists, rodents and rioters.  When you say something mean to me about me and my kids, I will get my feelings hurt and retaliate with something mean to say about you and your kids! 

But this is not who I am, and it is not who you are.  Christ is not only in us, He becomes us even as we become Him through Sonship.  Where we are there is Christ, and where He is we are.  He walks with us in our holiness as plain to see as the separateness and distinctiveness of our bodies. 

Our minds are sick without the awareness of our Sonship.  We are homesick.  We long for our true Selves, our Sonship, the Brotherhood.  We are very unhappy in separateness.  Some aspects of it seem nice enough.  But for every nice thing there is an opposite!  For every thing that brings us joy there is an equal sorrow.  As much time as we spend fussing over and taking care of our flesh bodies, they fail us.  But it is not the body that fails us, Jesus tells us in today’s introduction.  It is our minds that have been duped.  It is our minds which are sick without knowing who and what they are and where they belong and who they belong to. 

When our minds are healed by Christ our bodies are submerged in His light.  The Holiness of Christ, the peace and love and joy, shine out from us and everything we say and everything we do manifests the Christ within us.  This is not a pompous expression of Christ that would cause us to walk stiffly with weird costumes, smoldering incense, and meaningless chants and ridiculous rituals. We do not manifest Christ by refraining from saying inappropriate words, paying our tithes, and reading our Bibles every night before we go to bed.  We do not manifest Christ by going about quoting scripture and pointing out the sins and shortcomings of others. We manifest Christ by manifesting the attributes of God – the goodness and grace, the mercy and peace, the kindness and gentleness that elucidate the fearlessness and invulnerability of Love.

Our purpose and Christ’s purpose is one, and when we accept this, we can relax and rest in our trust in Him for the Christ in us leads us tenderly, in happiness and affection, to help and to heal the Sonship.  No longer a servant to the flesh, going about in doubt and uncertainty, identifying with our penises and vaginas, the color of our skin, our country of origin, the religions of our ancestors – we accept the Christ in us.  We are led by all-knowing, all-seeing Spirit Which is everywhere and everything.  I am here for you, and you are here for me, and in this way our minds are healed and redeemed, for the justice of God is merciful and mighty in His Love.     

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 25 The justice of God. Introduction. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credits:

comment 0


ACIM – Chapter 24.VII The Meeting Place

1. How bitterly does everyone tied to this world defend the specialness he wants to be the truth!  His wish is law to him, and he obeys.  Nothing his specialness demands does he withhold. Nothing it needs does he deny to what he loves.  And while it calls to him, he hears no other Voice.  No effort is too great, no cost too much, no price too dear to save his specialness from the least slight, the tiniest attack, the whispered doubt, the hint of threat, or anything but deepest reverence.  This is your son, beloved of you as you are to your Father.  Yet it stands in place of your creations, who are son to you, that you might share the Fatherhood of God, not snatch it from Him.  What is this son that you have made to be your strength? What is this child of earth on whom such love is lavished? What is this parody of God’s creation that takes the place of yours? And where are they now that the host of God has found another son whom he prefers to them?

2. The memory of God shines not alone. What is within your brother still contains all of creation, everything created and creating, born and unborn as yet, still in the future or apparently gone by. What is in him is changeless, and your changelessness is recognized in its acknowledgment. The holiness in you belongs to him. And by your seeing it in him, returns to you. All of the tribute you have given specialness belongs to him, and thus returns to you. All of the love and care, the strong protection, the thought by day and night, the deep concern, the powerful conviction this is you, belong to him. Nothing you gave to specialness but is his due. And nothing due him is not due to you.

3. How can you know your worth while specialness claims you instead? How can you fail to know it in his holiness? Seek not to make your specialness the truth, for if it were you would be lost indeed. Be thankful, rather, it is given you to see his holiness because it is the truth. And what is true in him must be as true in you.

4. Ask yourself this: Can you protect the mind? The body, yes, a little; not from time, but temporarily. And much you think you save, you hurt. What would you save it for? For in that choice lie both its health and harm. Save it for show, as bait to catch another fish, to house your specialness in better style, or weave a frame of loveliness around your hate, and you condemn it to decay and death. And if you see this purpose in your brother’s, such is your condemnation of your own. Weave, rather, then, a frame of holiness around him, that the truth may shine on him, and give you safety from decay.

5. The Father keeps what He created safe.  You cannot touch it with the false ideas you made, because it was created not by you. Let not your foolish fancies frighten you. What is immortal cannot be attacked; what is but temporal has no effect. Only the purpose that you see in it has meaning, and if that is true, its safety rests secure. If not, it has no purpose, and is means for nothing. Whatever is perceived as means for truth shares in its holiness and rests in light as safely as itself. Nor will that light go out when it is gone. Its holy purpose gave it immortality, setting another light in Heaven, where your creations recognize a gift from you, a sign that you have not forgotten them.

6. The test of everything on earth is simply this: “What is it for?” The answer makes it what it is for you. It has no meaning of itself, yet you can give reality to it, according to the purpose that you serve. Here you are but means, along with it. God is a Means as well as End. In Heaven, means and end are one, and one with Him. This is the state of true creation, found not within time, but in eternity. To no one here is this describable. Nor is there any way to learn what this condition means. Not till you go past learning to the Given: not till you make again a holy home for your creations is it understood.

7. A co-creator with the Father must have a Son. Yet must this Son have been created like Himself. A perfect being, all-encompassing and all-encompassed, nothing to add and nothing taken from; not born of size nor place nor time, nor held to limits or uncertainties of any kind. Here do the means and end unite as one, nor does this one have any end at all.  All this is true, and yet it has no meaning to anyone who still retains one unlearned lesson in his memory, one thought with purpose still uncertain, or one with a divided aim.

8. This course makes no attempt to teach what cannot easily be learned. Its scope does not exceed your own, except to say that what is yours will come to you when you are ready. Here are the means and the purpose separate because they were so made and so perceived. And therefore, do we deal with them as if they were. It is essential to be kept in mind that all perception still is upside down until its purpose has been understood. Perception does not seem to be a means. And it is this that makes it hard to grasp the whole extent to which it must depend on what you see it for. Perception seems to teach you what you see. Yet it but witnesses to what you taught. It is the outward picture of a wish; an image that you wanted to be true.

9. Look at yourself, and you will see a body. Look at this body in a different light and it looks different. And without a light it seems that it is gone. Yet you are reassured that it is there because you still can feel it with your hands and hear it move. Here is an image that you want to be yourself. It is the means to make your wish come true. It gives the eyes with which you look on it, the hands that feel it, and the ears with which you listen to the sounds it makes. It proves its own reality to you.

10. Thus is the body made a theory of yourself, with no provisions made beyond itself, and no escape within its sight. Its course is sure, when seen through its own eyes. It grows and withers, flourishes and dies. And you cannot conceive of you apart from it. You brand it sinful, and you hate its acts, judging it as evil. Yet your specialness whispers, “Here is my own beloved son, in whom I am well pleased.” Thus does the “son” become the means to serve his “father’s” purpose. Not identical, not even like, but still a means to offer to the “father” what he wants. Such is the travesty on God’s creation. For as His Son’s creation gave Him joy and witness to His Love and shared His purpose, so does the body testify to the idea that made it and speak for its reality and truth.

11. And thus are two sons made, and both appear to walk this earth without a meeting place and no encounter. One do you perceive outside yourself, your own beloved son. The other rests within, His Father’s Son, within your brother as he is in you. Their difference does not lie in how they look, nor where they go, nor even what they do. They have a different purpose. It is this that joins them to their like and separates them from all aspects with a different purpose. The Son of God retains his Father’s Will. The son of man perceives an alien will and wishes it were so. And thus does his perception serve his wish by giving it appearances of truth. Yet can perception serve another goal. It is not bound to specialness but by your choice. And it is given you to make a different choice and use perception for a different purpose. And what you see will serve that purpose well and prove its own reality to you.[1]

This Course cannot teach what cannot easily be learned, nor can I expound upon or offer commentary on what must come to you only when you are ready to receive.  In this world, the means to the end is perceived as separate – we exist in a state of time where it seems one thing must follow the thing before it.  And so, the Course is designed to teach us in the way we are made to perceive.  However, we must remember the purpose of perception was not for truth and so perception cannot teach us – in other words we cannot depend on what we see with our flesh eyes.  Perception only witnesses to what we taught it to be.  It is the outward picture of a wish, Jesus tells us, a wish to be separate from one another, to be separate from Creation, to focus on the differences, to be special and distinct from All that is. 

Perception then is an image of what we want; it is a means to make our wishes come true.  Perception proves its own reality to us.  And so, we find it very difficult if not impossible to conceive of ourselves as more than bodies, as able to escape our perceptions – even though they are all different and cause all manner of problems for us – we hold on to them and call them special and want them to be true, even though they make us hate each other and welcome death!  Read paragraph ten sentence by sentence and see how this travesty against the creation of God plays out – making our lives in the flesh seem our reality and our truth, drowning out the Voice for God within us, keeping us drearily cycling through time encountering the same content with a multitude of different forms, seldom if ever asking ourselves “What is this for?”

Instead of One son, we have two – a split which keeps the God-like from ever meeting or encountering the flesh and blood alternate.  The one is perception-based and ruled, our own beloved son, the one we spend our whole existence catering to and fawning over and sacrificing to in order to prevail another day, eat another meal, win another war, climb another ladder that promises success.  The Other is the Son of God, within each one of us linking us together forever in love, joy, and peace, establishing the Kingdom of God, complete only in each other.  The two sons have two entirely different purposes – one purpose joins them to the perception-based the other purpose joins them to the Divine. 

The Son of God retains the Love and oneness of God; the son of man perceives the fear and doubt of a world that would oppose oneness and make opposites to truth.  The son of man wants the alien world to be true and so his perceptions will make it so.  Everywhere he goes he will see opposition and opposites to truth.  He will glory in his willingness to sacrifice, to take up arms, to go to battle, to vanquish a constant stream of his supposed “enemies.”  He will love to tell people off, put others in their place and keep them there, see joy and fellowship, fearlessness and fun as timewasters viewing relaxation and restfulness with suspicion and grudge. 

And here Jesus tells us quite clearly that perception can serve another goal.  We can use perception to get past specialness by simply choosing to use it for truth.  When we use perception for truth, we will see beyond the physical, and what we see will prove reality to us.  This will happen for each one of us when we seek for truth with no thought of specialness.  We are seeking truth then not to make a name for ourselves, flying around the world in our own private jets spreading the Word of God.  When I realize that I have nothing more to teach you than you have to teach me; when I realize that I don’t get to go up in the Rapture and leave all the rest of humanity behind; when I realize that there is nothing at all about me that will ever make me more special than you or any other part of Creation in the eyes of God, then I am ready to use my perceptions for Christ.  And when I use my perceptions for Christ, I see what it is all about. I see you as you really are – your beauty, grace, and love.  I appreciate you; I cherish you; I devote myself to you and as I devote myself to you, I devote myself to God and when I devote myself to God, I devote myself to my true Creation and my body responds to this in a most positive way. 

For one thing, I sleep better because I am no longer tormented by all those things I will never accomplish for God or otherwise. The lies you made up about me, no longer sting.   I am no longer distressed over how you made fun, how jealous you acted over my happiness, how mean-spirited you seemed toward me and mine.  You cheated on me?  You denied paternity of our baby?  You neglected me in my greatest hour of need and turned on me when I needed you the most?  You took credit for my work? You showed up and stole my show?   I forgive it all because there is nothing to forgive.  It is over.  Those hurtful things were not you anymore than all the unkind, unloving, downright mean and jealous acts done in my ignorance was me.  We are one. 

While the perception of oneness seems to take place on the personal before it can be generalized to the world’s condition, the conscious choice to see past specialness to the oneness of Sonship is the Meeting Place, where the son of man is finished, and the Son of God remains – established in our hearts and minds forever. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 24 The goal of specialness. VII The meeting place. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For 2021 daily Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM Chapter 24:VI Salvation from Fear

1. Before your brother’s holiness the world is still, and peace descends on it in gentleness and blessing so complete that not one trace of conflict still remains to haunt you in the darkness of the night. He is your savior from the dreams of fear. He is the healing of your sense of sacrifice and fear that what you have will scatter with the wind and turn to dust. In him is your assurance God is here, and with you now. While he is what he is, you can be sure that God is knowable and will be known to you. For he could never leave his own creation. And the sign that this is so lies in your brother, offered you that all your doubts about yourself may disappear before his holiness. See in him God’s creation. For in him His Father waits for your acknowledgement that He created you as part of Him.

2. Without you there would be a lack in God, a Heaven incomplete, a Son without a Father. There could be no universe and no reality. For what God wills is whole, and part of Him because His Will is one. Nothing alive that is not part of Him, and nothing is but is alive in Him. Your brother’s holiness shows you that God is one with him and you; that what he has is yours because you are not separate from him nor from his Father.

3. Nothing is lost to you in all the universe. Nothing that God created has He failed to lay before you lovingly, as yours forever. And no thought within His mind is absent from your own. It is His Will who shares His Love for you, and look upon yourself as lovingly as He conceived of you before the world began, and as He knows you still. God changes not His Mind about His Son with passing circumstance which has no meaning in eternity where He abides, and you with Him. Your brother is as He created him. And it is this that saves you from a world that He created not.

4. Forget not that the healing of God’s Son is all the world is for. That is the only purpose the Holy Spirit sees in it, and thus the only one it has. Until you see the healing of the Son as all you wish to be accomplished by the world, by time and all appearances, you will not know the Father nor yourself. For you will use the world for what is not its purpose and will not escape its laws of violence and death. Yet it is given you to be beyond its laws in all respects, and every way and every circumstance, and all temptation to perceive what is not there, and all belief God’s Son can suffer pain because he sees himself as he is not.

5. Look on your brother and behold in him the whole reversal of the laws that seem to rule the world. See in his freedom yours, for such it is. Let not his specialness obscure the truth in him, for not one law of death you bind him to will you escape. And not one sin you see in him but keeps you both in hell. Yet will his perfect sinlessness release you both, for holiness is quite impartial, with one judgment made for all it looks upon. And that is made, not of itself, but through the Voice that speaks for God in everything that lives and shares His Being.

6. It is His sinlessness that eyes that see can look upon. It is His loveliness they see in everything. And it is He they look for everywhere and find no sight nor place nor time where He is not. Within your brother’s holiness, the perfect frame for your salvation and the world’s, is set the shining memory of Him in Whom your brother lives, and you along with him. Let not your eyes be blinded by the veil of specialness that hides the face of Christ from him, and you as well. And let the fear of God no longer hold the vision you were meant to see from you. Your brother’s body shows not Christ to you. He is set forth within his holiness.

7. Choose, then, his body or his holiness as what you want to see, and which you choose is yours to look upon. Yet will you choose in countless situations, and through time that seems to have no end, until the truth be your decision. For eternity is not regained by still one more denial of Christ in him. And where is your salvation if he is but a body? Where is your peace but in his holiness? And where is God Himself but in that part of Him He set forever in your brother’s holiness, that you might see the truth about yourself, set forth at last in terms you recognized and understood?

8. Your brother’s holiness is sacrament and benediction unto you.  His errors cannot withhold God’s blessing from himself, nor you who see him truly. His mistakes can cause delay, which it is given you to take from him, that both may end a journey that has never begun and needs no end. What never was is not a part of you. Yet you will think it is, until you realize that it is not a part of him who stands beside you. He is the mirror of yourself, wherein you see the judgment you have laid on both of you. The Christ in you beholds his holiness. Your specialness looks on his body and beholds him not.

9. See him as what he is, that your deliverance may not be long. A senseless wandering, without a purpose and without accomplishment of any kind, is all the other choice can offer you. Futility of function not fulfilled will haunt you while your brother lies asleep, till what has been assigned to you is done and he is risen from the past. He who condemned himself and you as well, is given you to save from condemnation, along with you. And both shall see God’s glory in His Son, whom you mistook as flesh, and bound to laws that have no power over him at all.

10. Would you not gladly realize these laws are not for you? Then see him not as prisoner to them. It cannot be what governs part of God holds not for all the rest. You place yourself under the laws you see as ruling him. Think, then, how great the love of God for you must be, that He has given you a part of Him to save from pain and give you happiness. And never doubt but that your specialness will disappear before the Will of God, Who loves each part of Him with equal love and care. The Christ in you can see your brother truly. Would you decide against the holiness He sees?

11. Specialness is the function that you gave yourself. It stands for you alone, as self-created, self-maintained, in need of nothing, and unjoined with anything beyond the body. In its eyes you are a separate universe, with all the power to hold itself complete within itself, with every entry shut against intrusion, and every window barred against the light. Always attacked and always furious, with anger always fully justified, you have pursued this goal with vigilance you never thought to yield, and efforts that you never thought to cease. And all this grim determination was for this; you wanted specialness to be the truth.

12. Now you are merely asked that you pursue another goal with far less vigilance, with little effort and with little time, and with the power of God maintaining it, and promising success. Yet of the two, it is this one you find more difficult. The “sacrifice” of self you understand, nor do you deem this cost too heavy. But a tiny willingness, a nod to God, a greeting to the Christ in you, you find a burden fearsome and tedious, too heavy to be born. Yet to the dedication to the truth as God established it no sacrifice is asked, no strain called forth, and all the power of Heaven and the might of truth itself is given to provide the means and guarantee the goal’s accomplishment.

13. You who believe it easier to see your brother’s body than his holiness, be sure you understand what made this judgment. Here is the voice of specialness heard clearly, judging against the Christ, and setting forth for you the purpose that you can attain, and what you cannot do. Forget not that this judgment must apply to what you do with it as your ally. For what you do through Christ it does not know. To Him this judgment makes no sense at all, for only what His Father wills is possible, and there is no alternative for Him to see. Out of His lack of conflict comes your peace. And from His purpose comes the means for effortless accomplishment and rest.[1]

When we put down our fear of God and turn our hearts and minds to love God, we step into a realm of peace and quiet and calm.  There is no more worry over not being worthy of Heaven when we accept our Sonship with Christ.  There is no more concern about our loved ones burning in hell for their sins, for if I accept myself as the sinless Son of God I must accept you as one with me in Christ. 

Today in your personal devotional practice spend as much time as you can reading and listening to the words of this text and be saved from fear.  Contemplate how being saved from fear means we are saved from the laws of this realm.  We no longer have to worry or be concerned about the things of the body for as we are one with Christ, Christ becomes us and not only our needs are provided for but our every desire for happiness in every form.  When I see you as my brother and friend, I am no longer afraid of you.  I can trust you as I trust Christ.  You can trust me as you trust Christ. As I learn to see you as Christ, I learn to see everyone as Christ.  I see past your body; I see past all the things that make us different and set us apart from one another; all I see when I look upon you is the beautiful Christ in you that shines with love, gladdens my heart, and lifts my spirits.  I would never dream of hurting you, saying one unkind thing about you, or focusing upon your faults and weaknesses.  Your happiness, wholeness, and completeness is my happiness, wholeness, and completeness. 

This is how God created us!  To walk in love with one another, to love Creation, to embrace the beautiful creatures and the lovely growing things with a sense of appreciation, awe, and wonder.  God created us complete with all that is, to know that His Love for us is not partial, is not punitive, or harsh or demanding in any way.  In our love of God, our mutuality is our joy!  We no longer compete and compare, we no longer seek to rise higher than our brothers, we no longer value this part of Creation while devaluing another part of Creation.  For our affinity is our everlasting peace.

Giving up a sense of specialness is not a sacrifice; it is our salvation.  Only in the Oneness of God do we find our invulnerability, our fearlessness, and love.  You are on this earth to heal the Sonship and I am on this earth to do the same.  Until this becomes our only goal we will mistakenly use the world for our own special agenda – over and over we will do this until we learn that our happiness, our peace, our very purpose of Being is found in our ability to see past the body to the Christ within each one. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 24 The goal of specialness. VI Salvation from fear. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons, visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM Chapter 24 V The Christ in You

1. The Christ in you is very still.  He looks on what He loves and knows it as Himself. And thus does He rejoice at what He sees, because He knows that it is one with Him and with His Father. Specialness, too, takes joy in what it sees, although it is not true. Yet what you seek for is a source of joy as you conceive it. What you wish is true for you. Nor is it possible that you can wish for something and lack faith that it is so. Wishing makes real, as surely as does will create. The power of a wish upholds illusions as strongly as does love extend itself. Except that one deludes; the other heals.

2. There is no dream of specialness, however hidden or disguised the form, however lovely it may seem to be, however much it delicately offers the hope of peace and the escape from pain, in which you suffer not your condemnation. In dreams effect and cause are interchanged, for here the maker of the dream believes that what he made is happening to him. He does not realize he picked a thread from here, a scrap from there, and wove a picture out of nothing. For the parts do not belong together, and the whole contributes nothing to the parts to give them meaning.

3. Where could your peace arise but from forgiveness? The Christ in you looks only on the truth and sees no condemnation that could need forgiveness. He is at peace because He sees no sin. Identify with Him, and what has He that you have not? He is your eyes, your ears, your hands, your feet. How gentle are the sights He sees, the sounds He hears, how beautiful His hand that holds his brother’s, and how lovingly He walks beside him, showing him what can be seen and heard, and where he will see nothing and there is no sound to hear.

4. Yet let your specialness direct his way, and you will follow. And both will walk in danger, each intent, in the dark forest of the sightless, unlit but by the shifting tiny gleams that spark an instant from the fireflies of sin and then go out, to lead the other to a nameless precipice and hurl him over it.  For what can specialness delight in but to kill? What does it seek for but the sight of death? Where does it lead but to destruction? Yet think not that it looked upon your brother first, nor hated him before it hated you. The sin its eyes behold in him and love to look upon, it saw in you, and looks on still with joy.  Yet is it joy to look upon decay and madness, and believe this crumbling thing, with flesh already loosened from the bone and sightless holes for eyes, is like yourself?

5. Rejoice you have no eyes with which to see; no ears to listen, and no hands to hold nor feet to guide. Be glad that only Christ can lend you His, while you have need of them. They are illusions, too, as much as yours. And yet because they serve a different purpose, the strength their purpose holds is given them. And what they see and hear and hold and lead is given light, that you may lead as you were led.

6. The Christ in you is very still. He knows where you are going, and He leads you there in gentleness and blessing all the way. His love for God replaces all the fear He thought you saw within yourself. His Holiness shows you Himself in him whose hand you hold, and whom you lead to Him. And what you see is like yourself. For what but Christ is there to see and hear and love and follow home? He looked upon you first but recognized that you were not complete. And so He sought for your completion in each living thing that He beholds and loves. And seeks it still, that each might offer you the Love of God.

7. Yet is He quiet, for He knows that love is in you now, and safely held in you by that same hand that holds your brother’s in your own. Christ’s hand holds all his brothers in Himself. He gives them vision for their sightless eyes, and sings to them of heaven, that their ears may hear no more the sound of battle and of death. He reaches through them, holding out His hand, that everyone may bless all living things, and see their holiness. And He rejoices that these sights are yours, to look upon with Him and share His joy. His perfect lack of specialness He offers you, that you may save all living things from death, receiving from each one the gift of life that your forgiveness offers to yourself. The sight of Christ is all there is to see. The song of Christ is all there is to hear. The hand of Christ is all there is to hold. There is no journey but to walk with Him.

8. You who would be content with specialness, and seek salvation in a war with love, consider this: The holy Lord of Heaven has Himself come down to you, to offer you your own completion. What is His is yours because in your completion is His own. He who willed not to be without His Son could never will that you be brotherless. And would He give a brother onto you except he be as perfect as yourself, and just as like to Him in holiness as you must be?

9. There must be doubt before there can be conflict. And every doubt must be about yourself. Christ has no doubt, and from His certainty His quiet comes. He will exchange his certainty for all your doubts, if you agree that He is one with you, and that this oneness is endless, timeless, and within your grasp because your hands are His. He is within you, yet He walks beside you and before, leading the way that He must go to find Himself complete. His quietness becomes your certainty. And where is doubt when certainty has come?[1]

Christ becomes us as we become Christ.  When we accept that we are as we were created, we accept ourselves as Christ – our holy brother and friend, our Sonship with God, our certainty and completion.  Every doubt we may have becomes a certainty of who and what we are as we agree that Christ is one with us – on earth as it is in Heaven. 

This is a quiet walk with God for the Christ within us is very still.  He is not a show-off.  He does not go about judging and condemning people.  He does not collect followers or take up collections.  The Christ within us does not get His feathers ruffled over the ups and downs of daily life.  Bad words do not offend Him.  He looks upon temper tantrums with the same love and compassion that He looks upon all of Creation. 

There is no specialness in the eyes of Christ.  He does not favor the rich, the powerful, the beautiful nor does He take special pity on the poor, the weak, the flawed, or the injured.  Christ loves us all the same – there is no part of Creation which escapes His goodwill or His helping hand. 

We find our completion in Christ for becoming one with Christ we become part of all that is.  Our oneness with Christ teaches us of God’s Love for without Him we would not remember our Sonship; without Christ we would seek for salvation in our specialness instead of our sameness.  For becoming one with Christ reawakens our love and our tenderness, our gentleness and goodness.  Our minds are freed from the mad dream of terror and bloodshed, murder and war.   When we look upon the world through the eyes of Christ, we see only the power and attraction and beauty of the way we care for one another, the ways in which we provide for one another, the ways in which we hold one another near and dear and close to our hearts.  In Christ we no longer dream of viciousness and spite; judgment and condemnation no longer waste our time.  We are too busy enjoying each other and exploring Creation to devise ways to kill and torture each other.  We are too engaged in our newfound freedom and liberty, our ability to really know one another with no obstructions or fear, to concern ourselves with competing or comparing.

When we accept our oneness with Christ, all of Heaven is restored to us, all that God is, we are. 

In your holy practice today train your thoughts deeply on Christ and allow the words from our text to rest upon your mind.  When Christ becomes us, He becomes our body and everything we do in the body – even though it is not real in the eternal sense of the word – takes on a much deeper meaning and brings us such happiness. When our special relationships become holy relationships, we no longer have an agenda, we no longer make demands, we no longer interfere or obstruct the love and perfect trust we have in each other, for when I love you and trust you, I am loving Christ and trusting Christ.  

Something wonderful happens when specialness goes away.  Standing at the kitchen sink washing our dishes, routinely performing any mundane chore, and there is love and light, peace and joy.  I do not have to go on vacation, run off to a resort, go on a cruise.  Taking my grandson to school is a joy and a privilege.  Swimming with my sister, I see the beautiful light of God shining from her face.  My husband up on the scaffold siding the house, aglow in the quiet love of Christ.  The voice of my friend on the phone, a song of heaven in my ears.  While there are no words to describe the quiet happiness and beautiful calm of accepting our oneness with Christ, let us extend the grace and mercy of Sonship to all – holding no thoughts of specialness and cherishing only that which leads us – together and forever – Home. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 24 The goal of specialness. V The Christ in you. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons, visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM – CHAPTER 24 THE GOAL OF SPECIALNESS IV. Specialness vs. Sinlessness

ACIM 24:IV Specialness vs. Sinlessness

1. Specialness is a lack of trust in anyone except yourself. Faith is invested in yourself alone. Everything else becomes your enemy, feared and attacked, deadly and dangerous, hated and worthy only of destruction. Whatever gentleness it offers is but deception, but its hate is real. In danger of destruction it must kill, and you are drawn to it to kill it first. And such is guilt’s attraction. Here is death enthroned as savior; crucifixion is now redemption, and salvation can only mean destruction of the world, except yourself.

2. What could the purpose of the body be but specialness? And it is this that makes it frail and helpless and its own defense. It was conceived to make you frail and helpless. The goal of separation is its curse. Yet bodies have no goal. Purpose is of the mind. And minds can change as they desire. What they are, and all their attributes, they cannot change. But what they hold as purpose can be changed, and body states must shift accordingly. Of itself the body can do nothing. See it as means to hurt, and it is hurt. See it as means to heal, and it is healed.

3. You can but hurt yourself. This has been oft repeated but is difficult to grasp as yet. To minds intent on specialness it is impossible. Yet to those who wish to heal and not attack, it is quite obvious. The purpose of attack is in the mind, and its effects are felt but where it is. Nor is the mind limited; so must it be that harmful purpose hurts the mind as one. Nothing could make less sense to specialness. Nothing could make more sense to miracles. For miracles are merely change of purpose from hurt to healing. This shift in purpose does “endanger” specialness, but only in the sense that all illusions are “threatened” by the truth. They will not stand before it. Yet what comfort has ever been in them, that you would keep the gift your Father asks from Him, and give it there instead? Given to Him, the universe is yours. Offered to them, no gifts can be returned. What you have given specialness has left you bankrupt and your treasure house barren and empty, with an open door inviting everything that would disturb your peace to enter and destroy.

4. Earlier I said consider not the means by which salvation is attained, nor how to reach it. But do consider, and consider well, whether it is your wish that you might see your brother sinless. To specialness the answer must be “no.” A sinless brother is its enemy, while sin, if it were possible, would be its friend. Your brother’s sin would justify itself and give it meaning that the truth denies. All that is real proclaims his sinlessness. All that is false proclaims his sins as real. If he is sinful, then is your reality not real, but just a dream of specialness that lasts an instant, crumbling into dust.

5. Do not defend this senseless dream, in which God is bereft of what He loves, and you remain beyond salvation. Only this is certain in this shifting world that has no meaning in reality. When peace is not with you entirely, and when you suffer pain of any kind, you have beheld some sin within your brother, and have rejoiced at what you thought was there. Your specialness seemed safe because of it, and thus you saved what you appointed to be your savior and crucified the one whom God has given you instead. So are you bound with him, for you are one. And so is specialness his “enemy,” and yours as well.[1]

In the world we often develop a cynical and untrustworthy attitude toward others.  People disappoint us, they do not live up to their promise, even our most beloved can fail to make us happy and get on our last nerve.  It is all too easy to fall into a state of self-interest and believe that it is possible to breathe, think, and perform only what seems to protect and benefit oneself.  In this state of mind, the government becomes our enemy; the people who have a different faith than ours becomes our enemy; the educational system, the highway men, the neighbors, and our own relatives have conspired against us. It is us against them!  When people are nice to us, we think that they are only cozying up to us to get something from us.  We will not fully realize and appreciate all the ways in which others have blessed us, shared with us, and helped us along the way.  Guilt is attractive to us for if we can make others guilty, then we get to be special in our own minds. For when we can downplay their contributions, refuse to understand their plight, and refuse to acknowledge our mutuality and brotherhood, we retain a false sense of specialness and entitlement.  As long as specialness is our salvation and our redemption is based upon another’s death, shame, sorrow, and humiliation, we remain bound to the body.

The body was designed to make us vulnerable, easily manipulated by food and water, drives for warmth and shelter, sex and pleasure.  The body evolved to symbolize separation from God and from each other.  Bodies in and of themselves have no goal or purpose for they are finite and do not exist without our minds and our will.  Minds on the other hand do exist and exist forever.  Minds cannot change their attributes and what they are for they were created by God and will never be changed for they were created perfect, whole, and complete – like God. 

To believe this we must consider God as a Father, not as an ego.  A Father would create only like Himself.  As Love, God would have no need to handicap His creations and make of them less than Himself.  An ego on the other hand would handicap its captives, and make them lesser than itself in order to manipulate them and take pleasure in the power that it holds over the vulnerable creation.  A Father’s goal would be for His Creations to be like Him and to extend His Likeness throughout the Universe, expanding and extending happiness: love, peace, and joy and all the goodness and goodwill forever and ever.  An ego’s goal is to embody its captives in flesh, to favor some and disfavor others, to compete for resources, to go to wars and fight battles, to live in instability and opposition.  Only that which lacks love would make a world of opposites and keep its beings in a state of vulnerability, dependence, and enslavement.    

Our minds cannot change for they are the breath of God, they are the God-within us, our holy and sinless Spirit, invulnerable forever.  But what we choose to do with our minds is up to us, the purpose we choose for our minds can either awaken us or keep us asleep in captivity to the body and the ego it serves.  Our body is nothing without our minds, it can do nothing on its own.  When we see the body as our identity, our body is then a means to cherish separation and to hurt others, therefore it is hurt.  When we see the body not as our identity, but as the means to help and to heal, it is healed. 

In paragraph three, we hear again that we can only hurt ourselves.  When we think of ourselves as bodies, we see ourselves as separate.  Hurting you may make me feel good at the time.  This  may seem well-deserved for what you did to me.  When we are intent on our personal specialness, it is impossible to understand the truth that we are not separate.  That what I wish upon you, I bring to myself.  Because our minds are inextricably linked; we are blessed and we are cursed as one. 

Miracles change the purpose of our minds from seeing danger and enemies and a shattered and scattered Creation intent upon harm to oneness and unity of Creation, to healing and restoration, to the wholeness and completeness of one in all and all in one. 

There can be no specialness in Creation.  There can be no separation.  To love one part is to love all parts and to harm one part is to harm all.  Until we accept this we dream of sin, suffering, and shame desiring to be special and separated from Creation.  We act out our lives as scenarios upon this belief, and while none of it is real in the eternal sense of the word, our suffering, torment, and anguish continue on insufferably in repetitive cycles.

We give the gift of God to one another when we choose to see one without specialness and therefore without sin.  As I give you the vision of Christ, you give me the Vision of Christ.  We behold each other in mercy, forgiveness, and mutuality.  We see beyond our humanity to the Mind of Christ within.  When I behold you, I behold Christ, and you behold me as a Son of God.  This is our gift from God, and to God when we extend it to all.

All that is real about you is your sinlessness; all that is false about you is your sin.  If your sins are real, then my reality as sinless is not real for we are one.  This business of separation and specialness cannot last for it survives on conflict, bloodshed, and death.  Nobody wants that for themselves and yet to wish it upon another is to bring it to yourself.   

Let there be no defense for this outrageous fantasy which keeps us from the Father, that keeps us from our Home.  The shifting world of opposites and opposition has no place in eternity; it is a state of hellishness, an illusion that makes what can never be seem real and ongoing, inducing dread and doom, making death acceptable and even welcome!  To behold and revel in someone else’s sin, to see ourselves as above them and not as one with them – destroys our peace and offers only suffering and pain.  Do not wonder why.  The mystery is over.  Our specialness will never be safe, for when we choose specialness, we crucify the very one whom God has given us to love, to show mercy, to accept as brother and savior.  

Our specialness can never be for it makes of us, not the Son of God, but something weird and off-center and a mere image of what could never withstand forever.

In your personal devotions today, ask Holy Spirit to illuminate the Creation of God to you.  Open your mind to the oneness and unity which brings us the whole picture of who and what we are in God.  As we identify with and welcome Holy Spirit to restore our minds to the High Mind of Sonship, we begin to grasp the illness and instability of the lower mind and the lower realm.  We must not be afraid to look at this dispassionately and with objectivity.  We are not in the world to be afraid, to cower, and to live in ignorance pleading to God for mercy and to spare us.  Nor are we in the world to gather arms and go to war with our brothers, cherishing thoughts of bloodshed and mistaking our yearning for murder and plunder as courage and goodwill.  We are here to heal the separation, to see our desire for specialness as what it is and where it leads, to identify with our holiness and to bring all the Sonship home where it belongs. 

Welcome the return of Christ in your heart and mind and in that state of return, extend it to all.  This is a very quiet and peaceful work.  We do not get into arguments.  We do not shame those who fail to understand.  We do not preach to those who cherish specialness, for those who cherish specialness have no way of recognizing the truth.  We simply bring our minds to holiness.  For when your mind is stayed on holiness and my mind is stayed on holiness, the light breaks through in all minds for we are one.    

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 24 The goal of specialness. IV Specialness vs. sinlessness. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM – CHAPTER 24 THE GOAL OF SPECIALNESS III. The Forgiveness of Specialness

1. Forgiveness is the end of specialness. Only illusions can be forgiven, and then they disappear. Forgiveness is release from all illusions, and that is why it is impossible but partly to forgive. No one who clings to one illusion can see himself as sinless, for he holds one error to himself as lovely still. And so he calls it “unforgivable,” and makes it sin. How can he then give his forgiveness wholly, when he would not receive it for himself? For it is sure he would receive it wholly the instant that he gave it so.  And thus his secret guilt would disappear, forgiven by himself.

2. Whatever form of specialness you cherish, you have made sin. Inviolate it stands, strongly defended with all your puny might against the Will of God. And thus, it stands against yourself; “your” enemy, not God’s. So does it seem to split you off from God, and make you separate from Him as its defender. You would protect what God created not. And yet, this idol that seems to give you power has taken it away. For you have given your brother’s birthright to it, leaving him alone and unforgiven, and yourself in sin beside him, both in misery, before the idol that can save you not.

3. It is not you who are so vulnerable and open to attack that just a word, a little whisper that you do not like, a circumstance that suits you not, or an event that you did not anticipate upsets your world and hurls it into chaos. Truth is not frail. Illusions leave it perfectly unmoved and undisturbed. But specialness is not the truth in you.  It can be thrown off balance by anything. What rests on nothing never can be stable. However large and overblown it seems to be, it still must rock and turn and whirl about with every breeze. 

4. Without foundation nothing is secure. Would God have left His Son in such a state, where safety has no meaning? No, His Son is safe, resting on Him. It is your specialness that is attacked by everything that walks and breathes, or creeps or crawls, or even lives at all.  Nothing is safe from its attack, and it is safe from nothing.  It will forevermore be unforgiving, for that is what it is; a secret vow that what God wants for you will never be, and that you will oppose His Will forever.  Nor is it possible the two can ever be the same, while specialness stands like a flaming sword of death between them, and makes them enemies. 

5. God asks for your forgiveness. He would have no separation, like an alien will, rise between what He wills for you and what you will.  They are the same, for neither One wills specialness.  How could They will the death of Love Itself. Yet They are powerless to make attack upon illusions. They are not bodies; as one Mind They wait for all illusions to be brought to Them, and left behind. Salvation challenges not even death. And God Himself, Who knows that death is not your will must say, “Thy will be done” because you think it is.

6. Forgive the great Creator of the universe, the Source of life, of love and holiness, the perfect Father of a perfect Son, for your illusions of your specialness.  Here is the hell you chose to be your home.  He chose not this for you. Ask not He enter this. The way is barred to love and to salvation. Yet if you would release your brother from the depths of hell, you have forgiven Him Whose Will it is you rest forever in the arms of peace, in perfect safety, an without the heat and malice of one thought of specialness to mar your rest. Forgive the Holy One the specialness He could not give, and that you made instead.

7. The special ones are all asleep, surrounded by a world of loveliness they do not see.  Freedom and peace and joy stand there, beside the bier on which they sleep, and call them to come forth and waken from their dream of death. Yet they hear nothing. They are lost in dreams of specialness. They hate the call that would awaken them, and they curse God because He did not make their dream reality. Curse God and die, but not by Him Who made not death, but only in the dream.  Open your eyes a little; see the savior God gave to you that you might look on him and give him back his birthright. It is yours.

8. The slaves of specialness will yet be free. Such is the Will of God and of His Son. Would God condemn Himself to hell and to damnation? And do you will that this be done unto your savior? God calls to you from him to join His Will to save you both from hell. Look on the print of nails upon his hands that he holds out for your forgiveness. God asks your mercy on His Son and on Himself. Deny Them not. They ask of you but that your will be done. They seek your love that you may love yourself. Love not your specialness instead of Them. The print of nails is on your hands as well. Forgive your Father it was not His Will that you be crucified.[1]

God cannot make us special and for this we must forgive Him.  Our desire for specialness has kept us in a deep sleep, in a realm of uncertainty, chaos, enmity, and death, which can never touch forever.  Specialness keeps us bound in a sense of time, the safe place where dreams of power, control, status, and predominance replace the love and brotherhood of God’s Son. 

Creation is obscured to those who would be special.  There is freedom, peace, and joy always there, always waiting for us to awaken from the dream of death.  Read over this text carefully and prayerfully, with a calm and quiet mind, open to the ideas expounded upon here.  We must forgive God for our own waywardness, for our own desire to rise above each other, and to rise above Him, for not understanding that Love and Truth cannot be opposed.  We must forgive our Father for granting us our wishes and giving us the dream of what we asked for.

Recognize the fact that we are not special and we awaken to the loveliness of Creation as it was created – as one and complete and whole.  Reality was not opposed by fiction, dreams of dominance had not replaced the only power that exists.  God cannot enter this dream for it was not created in love and by love and for love.  It was made with the mad idea of separation and specialness.  God does not choose sides in a battle.  God does not have a chosen people.  God does not demand blood sacrifice nor is His Will manipulated by the praise and worship and flattery of flesh and blood. 

In paragraph seven, Jesus tells us that we are lost in dreams of specialness.  That we hate the call to awaken; that we curse God for not making our dreams come true.  The best He could do was let us wander in our illusions, trusting that we will eventually reclaim our birthright in the “us” that is one. 

And so here we find the one thing that bars us from Heaven, the one thing that we must recognize and expunge from our consciousness, the one thing that will keep us circling in the karmic cycles of birth, and suffering, death and dying.  We do not get to be special. My light can shine no brighter than your light.  There is no sin for the world and all that would fill our minds with dismay is a mirage.  God does not play favorites with lies.  The only power that exists is that which extends Itself, creates like Itself, does not defeat Itself by creating that which can be opposed by opposites or manipulated by neediness of any kind. When we accept this truth, our eyes begin to flutter open.  We become free of doctrines, dogma, and the discrepancy of God that would instill specialness as a substitute for God.

Spend some quiet time contemplating the message in the last paragraph of today’s text for here we see that when we turn upon our brother, we turn upon God.  When we would send our brother to hell for his sins, we are sending God to hell, for we are one with God and this could never be the Father’s Will.  Let us allow this concept to awaken our minds.  We are of God and in God; God Himself has extended Himself through us.  It is our desire for specialness that would crucify and condemn any part of the Sonship.  Be merciful to God by showing mercy to His Son, Whom He loves and refuses to make special.     

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 24 The goal of specialness. III The forgiveness of specialness. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM – CHAPTER 24 THE GOAL OF SPECIALNESS II. The Treachery of Specialness

ACIM Chapter 24 II. The Treachery of Specialness

1. Comparison must be an ego device, for love makes none. Specialness always makes comparisons. it is established by a lack seen in another, and maintained by searching for, and keeping clear in sight, all lacks it can perceive. This does it see, and this it looks upon. And always whom it thus diminishes would be your savior, had you not chosen to make of him a tiny measure of your specialness instead. Against the littleness you see in him you stand as tall and stately, clean and honest, pure and unsullied, by comparison with what you see. Nor do you understand it is yourself that you diminish thus.

2. Pursuit of specialness is always at the cost of peace. Who can attack his savior and cut him down, yet recognize his strong support? Who can distract from his omnipotence, yet share his power? And who can use him as the gauge of littleness, and be released from limits? You have a function in salvation. Its pursuit will bring you joy. But the pursuit of specialness must bring you pain. Here is a goal that would defeat salvation, and thus run counter to the Will of God. To value specialness is to esteem an alien will to which illusions of yourself are dearer than the truth.

3. Specialness is the idea of sin made real. Sin is impossible even to imagine without this base. For sin arose from it, out of nothingness; an evil flower with no roots at all. Here is the self-made “savior,” the “creator” who creates unlike the Father, and which made His Son like to itself and not like unto Him.  His “special” sons are many, never one, each one in exile from himself, and Him of Whom they are a part.  Nor do they love the Oneness which created them as one with Him.  They chose their specialness instead of Heaven and instead of peace, and wrapped it carefully in sin, to keep it “safe” from truth.

4. You are not special. If you think you are, and would defend your specialness against the truth of what you really are, how can you know the truth? What answer that the Holy Spirit gives can reach you, when it is your specialness to which you listen, and which asks and answers?  Its tiny answer, soundless in the melody that pours from God to you eternally in loving praise of what you are, is all you listen to.  And that vast song of honor and of love for what you are seems silent and unheard before its “mightiness.” You strain your ears to hear its soundless voice, and yet the Call of God Himself is soundless to you. 

5. You can defend your specialness, but never will you hear the Voice for God beside it.  They speak a different language and they fall on different ears.  To every special one a different message, and one with different meaning, is the truth.  Yet how can truth be different to each one?  The special messages the special hear convince them they are different and apart; each in his special sins and “safe” from love, which does not see his specialness at all.  Christ’s vision is their “enemy,” for it sees not what they would look upon, and it would show them that the specialness they think they see is an illusion.

6. What would they see instead? The shining radiance of the Son of God, so like his Father that the memory of Him springs instantly to mind.  And with this memory, the Son remembers his own creations, as like to him as he is to his Father.  And all the world he made, and all his specialness, and all the sins he held in its defense against himself, will vanish as his mind accepts the truth about himself, as it returns to take their place.  This is the only “cost” of truth.  You will no longer see what never was, nor hear what makes no sound.  Is it a sacrifice to give up nothing, and to receive the Love of God forever?

7. You who have chained your savior to your specialness, and given it his place, remember this: he has not lost the power to forgive you all the sins you think you placed between him and the function of salvation given him for you.  Nor will you change his function, any more than you can change the truth in him and in yourself.  But be you certain that the truth is just the same in both.  It gives no different messages and has one meaning.  And it is one you and your brother both can understand, and one that brings release to both of you.  Here stands your brother with the key to Heaven in his hand, held out to you. Let not the dream of specialness remain between you.  What is one is joined in truth.   

8. Think of the loveliness that you will see within yourself, when you have looked on him as on a friend. He is the enemy of specialness, but only friend to what is real in you. Not one attack you thought you made on him has taken from him the gift that God would have him give to you. His need to give it is as great as yours to have it. Let him forgive you all your specialness and make you whole in mind and one with him. He waits for your forgiveness only that he may return it onto you. It is not God Who has condemned His Son, but you, to save his specialness and kill his Self.

9. You have come far along the way of truth; too far to falter now. Just one step more, and every vestige of the fear of God will melt away in love. Your brother’s specialness and yours are enemies, and bound in hate to kill each other and deny they are the same. Yet it is not illusions that have reached this final obstacle which seems to make God and His Heaven so remote that they cannot be reached. Here in this holy place does truth stand waiting to receive you and your brother in silent blessing, and in peace so real and so encompassing that nothing stands outside. Leave all illusions of yourself outside this place, to which you come and hope in honesty.

10. Here is your savior from your specialness. He is in need of your acceptance of himself as part of you, as you for his. You are alike to God as God is to himself. He is not special, or he would not keep one part of what he is onto Himself, not given to His Son but kept for Him alone. And it is this you fear, for if He is not special, then He willed His Son to be like Him, and your brother is like you. Not special, but possessed of everything, including you. Give him but what he has, remembering God gave Himself to you and your brother in equal love, that both might share the universe with Him who chose that love could never be divided, and kept separate from what it is and must forever be.

11. You are your brother’s; part of love was not denied to him. But can it be that you have lost because he is complete? What has been given him makes you complete, as it does him. God’s love gave you to him and him to you because He gave Himself. What is the same as God is one with Him. And only specialness could make the truth of God and you as one seem anything but Heaven, with the hope of peace at last in sight.

12. Specialness is the seal of treachery upon the gift of love. Whatever serves its purpose must be given to kill. No gifts that bear its seal but offers treachery to giver and receiver. Not one glance from eyes it veils but looks on sight of death. Not one believer in its potency but seeks for bargains and for compromise that would establish sin love’s substitute and serve it faithfully. And no relationship that holds its purpose dear but clings to murder as safety’s weapon, and the great defender of all illusions from the “threat” of love.

13. The hope of specialness makes it seem possible God made the body as the prison house that keeps His Son from Him.  For it demands a special place God cannot enter, and a hiding place where none is welcome but your tiny self. Nothing is sacred here but unto you, and you alone, apart, and separate from all your brothers, safe from all intrusions of sanity upon illusions, safe from God and safe for conflict everlasting.  Here are the gates of hell you closed upon yourself to rule in madness and in loneliness your special kingdom, apart from God, away from truth and from salvation.

14. The key you threw away, God gave your brother, whose holy hands would offer it to you when you were ready to accept His plan for your salvation in the place of yours. How could this readiness be reached saved through the sight of all your misery, and the awareness that your plan has failed, and will forever fail to bring you peace and joy of any kind? Through this despair you travel now, yet it is but illusion of despair. The death of specialness is not your death, but your awaking into life eternal. You but emerge from an illusion of what you are to the acceptance of yourself as God created you.[1]

In your personal devotional today, take all the time you need to go over each paragraph and ask Holy Spirit to illuminate each passage.  We have come too far in our Course study to falter now, and yet as long as we hold on to any illusion of our separateness and specialness, we will not be able to accept our real and everlasting Self as God created us. 

You are not special!  God does not love you any more than He loves everybody else.  Your righteous works, nice demeanor, church attendance, and popularity can do nothing to make you better than anyone else.  The crimes you commit, the lies you tell, the ways in which you use your wit and intelligence against others instead of for others, will never detract from who and what God created you to be.  God created us in Love, for Love, and to be Love.  And that is what we are – no matter how our egos have seemed to pervert this truth.  I cannot be reunited with the Sonship without you and you cannot be reunited with the Sonship without me.  This  is not a burden or a curse upon us for resisting our Brotherhood.  Rather it is our salvation, it is our cure for our sense of loneliness and despair.  It is our remedy for the treachery in which our desire for specialness, to stand above our brothers, to oppose the Love of God destroys us and keeps us from Love.

When I desire to be more special than you, I make of you an enemy.  Every one of us, no matter how seeming humble, no matter how seeming self-effacing, desire in our hearts to be the chosen, to find some way in which to be special.  This desire to rise to the top and look down in smug satisfaction from our perches can make us look silly at best and drive us to do mean and violent acts at worst.  If we cannot get to any height by our own steam, we will join organizations, choose professions, and marry into a family or business that will elevate our prestige, to make others envious, to establish our specialness.  Such conniving is not based upon love, but upon what our Course calls specialness.  We can substitute the word status for better clarification. 

Specialness is treacherous because it can be threatened. If what makes me feel special is the intelligence, good looks, and fitness level of our family and one of our children struggles intellectually, is not that cute, and has little to no desire to exercise or restrict calories – my sense of specialness will make of my child an “enemy.”  While I may cloak my enmity toward my child as concern, I will wreak havoc upon my family by focusing too much attention on trying to fix the kid who does not meet my picture of our above-average  family.  I will exert my will over him.  I will worry how his failures are going to besmirch our family’s good name.  Instead of loving my child and seeing him as my savior from specialness, I will harbor resentment and cherish feelings of guilt, shame, and ill will toward him. 

We will often seek our specialness from our mates, marrying for what they seem to offer us and then being taken aback in shock and dismay when they fail to live up to our imagined ideals of specialness.  Rather than accepting them as mutual Sons of God suffering the bonds of humanity right along with us, we expect them to make us special, to make us shine, to give us a good name, to work hard and deny themselves their own glorious freedom and liberty in order to maintain our specialness. When you marry me for my youth and my beauty, you are not marrying me, you are marrying specialness.  The “love” you profess for me depends upon me  living up to the ego’s unstable and impossible ideals of youth and beauty. 

Bringing specialness to holiness is freedom and liberty from the shallow, superficial, ego-centered ideals. When our relationships are not governed by our desire for specialness, we are free to truly love and appreciate others.  We do not hold others responsible to match our pictures of what they should be, what we want them to do with their lives, or what roles they must play in our lives.  We no longer have a sense of owning others or forcing our wills upon them.  For we recognize in each other’s supposed flaws and shortcomings our mutual need for a savior, for an awakening, for an acceptance of our Selves as God created us. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 24 The goal of specialness. II The treachery of specialness. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM – CHAPTER 24 THE GOAL OF SPECIALNESS I. Specialness as a Substitute for Love

1. Love is extension.  To withhold the smallest gift is not to know Love’s purpose. Love offers everything forever. Hold back but one belief, one offering, and love is gone, because you asked a substitute to take its place. And now must war, the substitute for peace, come with the one alternative that you can choose for love. Your choosing it has given it all the reality it seems to have.

2. Beliefs will never openly attack each other because conflicting outcomes are impossible. But an unrecognized belief is a decision to war in secret, where the results of conflict are kept unknown and never brought to reason, to be considered sensible or not. And many senseless outcomes have been reached, and meaningless decisions have been made and kept hidden, to become beliefs now given power to direct all subsequent decisions. Mistake you not the power of these hidden warriors to disrupt your peace. For it is at their mercy while you decide to leave it there. The secret enemies of peace, your least decision to choose attack instead of love, unrecognized and swift to challenge you to combat and to violence far more inclusive than you think, are there by your election. Do not deny their presence nor their terrible results. All that can be denied is their reality, but not their outcome.

3. All that is ever cherished as a hidden belief, to be defended though unrecognized, is faith in specialness. This takes many forms, but always clashes with the reality of God’s creation and with the grandeur that He gave His Son. What else could justify attack? For who could hate someone whose Self is his, and whom he knows? Only the special could have enemies, for they are different and not the same. And difference of any kind imposes orders of reality, and a need to judge that cannot be escaped.

4. What God created cannot be attacked, for there is nothing in the universe unlike itself. But what is different calls for judgment, and this must come from someone “better,” someone incapable of being like what he condemns, “above” it, sinless by comparison with it. And thus does specialness become a means and end at once. For specialness not only sets apart but serves as grounds from which attack on those who seem “beneath” the special one is “natural” and “just.” The special ones feel weak and frail because of differences, for what would make them special is their enemy. Yet they protect its enmity and call it “friend.” On its behalf they fight against the universe, for nothing in the world they value more.

5. Specialness is the great dictator of the wrong decisions. Here is the grand illusion of what you are and what your brother is. And here is what must make the body dear and worth preserving. Specialness must be defended.  Illusions can attack it, and they do. For what your brother must become to keep your specialness is an illusion. He who is “worse” than you must be attacked, so that your specialness can live on his defeat. For specialness is triumph, and its victory is his defeat and shame. How can he live, with all your sins upon him? And who must be his conqueror but you?

6. Would it be possible for you to hate your brother if you were like him? Could you attack him if you realized you journey with him, to a goal that is the same? Would you not help him reach it in every way you could, if his attainment of it were perceived as yours? You are his enemy in specialness, his friend in a shared purpose. Specialness can never share, for it depends on goals that you alone can reach. And he must never reach them, or your goal is jeopardized. Can love have meaning where the goal is triumph? And what decision can be made for this that will not hurt you?

7. Your brother is your friend because His Father created him like you. There is no difference. You have been given to your brother that love might be extended, not cut off from him. What you keep is lost to you. God gave you and your brother Himself, and to remember this is now the only purpose that you share. And so it is the only one you have. Could you attack your brother if you chose to see no specialness of any kind between you and him? Look fairly at whatever makes you give your brother only partial welcome or would let you think that you are better off apart. Is it not always your belief your specialness is limited by your relationship? Is not this the “enemy” that makes you and your brother illusions to each other?

8. The fear of God and of your brother comes from each unrecognized belief in specialness. For you demand your brother bow to it against his will. And God Himself must honor it or suffer vengeance. Every twinge of malice, or stab of hate or wish to separate arises here. For here the purpose that you and your brother share becomes obscured from both of you. You would oppose this course because it teaches you you and your brother are alike. You have no purpose that is not the same, and none your Father does not share with you.  For your relationship has been made clean of special goals. And would you now defeat the goal of holiness that Heaven gave it? What perspective can the special have that does not change with every seeming blow, each slight, or fancy judgment on themselves?

9. Those who are special must defend illusions against the truth. For what is specialness but an attack upon the Will of God? You love your brother not while it is this you would defend against him. This is what he attacks, and you protect. Here is the ground of battle which you wage against him. Here must be your enemy and not your friend. Never can there be peace among the different. He is your friend because you are the same.[1]

Holy relationships are relationships that have been consciously cleared of the goal of specialness.  I love you and you love me and we do not seek specialness of any kind.  Your gifts do not elevate you in the eyes of God nor do they give me cause to idolize you in any way.  You simply have been given gifts, even as I have been given gifts, and while our gifts may complement one another, they never make us separate or set us apart from others.  

Any hint of specialness is a defense against the truth of our oneness in Sonship.  Specialness is an attack against the Everything of God for it would take something apart from the Will of God and make of it an idol, something to draw attention to and say, but this particular bit of creation, this particular relationship, this particular person is better and has more value to me than all that is. 

When we make something special, something rare, something better than – it must be protected.  It must be held closely.  It must be jealously guarded against our worry that someone or something will come along and snatch it from us.  Therefore, there is no real love in special relationships for love is about being free and having liberty and including all things and not excluding. 

In your personal devotional practice today, ask Holy Spirit to show you the special relationships in your life and ask that they may be made holy.  Jesus is not asking us to leave our spouses, children, friends, and families.  He is not asking us to forsake our responsibilities and obligations to those we love.  He is simply asking us to take our egos out of our relationships, to stop substituting love with flattery, bargains, idolatry, popularity, numbers, ratings, and glorification of separateness and distinction over the everlasting value and beauty of Creation as a whole. 

When we expand our consciousness to take in all of Creation and see it as equally worthy, innocent, and pure we expand our minds past the little alliances, the boastful claims, and the false obligations and demands of special relationships.  We free ourselves of the need to defend for when our relationships are holy there is no need for defense – I am not here to get more stars in my crown than you are – I am here because you are here and my only way of return to God is through the love and purity and innocence we share in our hearts and minds toward each other.  My family and your family have equal worth and value for we all contribute equally to the Kingdom of God.  Just as we are not competing for the Father’s Love, nor do we compete for worldly acclaim or recognition.  All the ways in which the world would divide us through a sense of specialness are gone for we accept our mutuality as Sons of God.  And united in the Love that is God, the Kingdom is reestablished in our minds and hearts forever. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 24 The goal of specialness. I. Specialness as a substitute for love. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM-24 The Goal of Specialness Introduction

1. Forget not that the motivation for this course is the attainment and the keeping of the state of peace.  Given this state the mind is quiet, and the condition in which God is remembered is attained. It is not necessary to tell Him what to do. He will not fail. Where He can enter, there He is already. And can it be He cannot enter where He wills to be? Peace will be yours because it is His Will. Can you believe a shadow can hold back the Will that holds the universe secure? God does not wait upon illusions to let Him be Himself. No more His Son. They are. And what illusion that idly seems to drift between Them has the power to defeat what is Their Will?

2. To learn this course requires willingness to question every value that you hold. Not one can be kept hidden and obscure, but it will jeopardize your learning. No belief is neutral. Everyone has the power to dictate each decision you make. For a decision is a conclusion based on everything that you believe. It is the outcome of belief and follows it as surely as does suffering follow guilt and freedom sinlessness. There is no substitute for peace. What God creates has no alternative. The truth arises from what He knows. And your decisions come from your beliefs as certainly as all creation rose in His Mind because of what He knows.[1]

This course is about getting and keeping the state of peace.  Peace is a state of mind that is from God.  There is no substitute for it.  It is a quiet state of mind.  The monkey chatter goes away.  When the monkey chatter goes away, God is remembered in the quietness that is there.  Because there is nothing that would distract the Mind then from what It is. 

There is no need to pray and ask God to do things for us.  God already knows all we have need of – He knows what makes us happy.  He knows our meaning and purpose.  He made us and so He knows.  Because God is Love He will not fail us.  Where there is peace and quiet He is welcomed and He is there already, waiting to be recognized and welcomed.  He is a not a Guest.  He is the Father.  He is Within us; He is us.  Peace is ours because He is peace; peace is His Will; it is what He wants and has and is. 

What we have here is merely a shadow and a shadow cannot hold back the peace of God for the Peace of God, the Will of God holds the universe secure.  All dreams that would oppose this are illusions.  All made up versions of reality are simply illusions, they are alternate realities, they are substitutes for the real thing.  God has no fear of illusions for they are only insane dreams and fictional accounts.  God does not have to wait around twiddling His thumbs waiting upon the dreamers to wake up to go back to being Himself.  Nor does His Son.  A Son who dreams is merely not awakened.  No matter what that Son may dream, it has no effect upon His reality as God’s Son.  God is and His Son is – forever.  Nothing can destroy them or affect their holy unity as Father and Son.  There is nothing that happens in a realm of nothingness that can hinder this or take it away.  No matter how evil and depraved the dreams in time – nothing will destroy their purity and innocence and love. 

This is a course in miracles.  To learn this course we must rethink what we consider a miracle.  To learn this course, we must bring all that is dark, all that is secretive, all that is hidden in our psyches, in our past, in our belief systems to the light.  If we cherish any little thing that is worthless, any little thing that opposes the Love that God is, if we hold in our minds a secret passion for murder in any form and call it by another name, we will not be able to learn what miracles are or how to give and thus receive them. 

Every belief we have and hold dear to us dictates each decision we make.  If I believe in sin of any kind, my decisions about you will be based on whether I believe you are a sinner or if you are “saved” like me.  If I conclude that you are willfully rejecting your salvation and continuing to enjoy and adhere to a life of sin, I will make you guilty and because I make you guilty I will make myself guilty for I can only have what I give to others.  The only way I can be free of sin, is to give the state of sinlessness to everyone for we are all one – you and me and all of humanity.  There is no substitute for the peace that comes from knowing this truth and practicing it in the face of all illusions and opposition that would separate, vilify, and crucify  the Sonship. 

For we are created by God. There is nothing that can oppose the truth, the reality of God.  God is in us and of us and for us.  If we believe otherwise, our decisions about ourselves and each other will lead nowhere.  We will experience chaos instead of peace.  Instead of the Creation of God we will exist as miscreants in a realm of opposites and opposition going in all different directions with no order, meaning, or ultimate purpose!  Our brief, uncertain lives will be driven by meaningless passions, irrelevant pursuits, and ignorance.  Ignorant of what is worthwhile we will spend our lives nosing in the affairs of others, gossiping, and digging in the past to find juicy morsels in which to pin our interest.  We will will make up stories about each other and call them the truth. We will idolize some relationships as special and holy, and thus destroy every relationship we attempt to have in the flesh.   

To learn this Course, we must be willing to question every value we have.

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 24 The goal of specialness. Introduction. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


ACIM CHAPTER 23 IV Above the Battlefield

1. Do not remain in conflict, for there is no war without attack. The fear of God is fear of life, and not of death. Yet He remains the only place of safety. In Him is no attack, and no illusion in any form stalks Heaven. Heaven is wholly true. No difference enters, and what is all the same cannot conflict. You are not asked to fight against your wish to murder, but you are asked to realize the form it takes conceals the same intent. And it is this you fear, and not the form. What is not love is murder. What is not loving must be an attack. Every illusion is an assault on truth. And everyone does violence to the idea of love because it seems to be of equal truth.

2. What can be equal to the truth, yet different? Murder and love are incompatible. Yet if they both are true, then must they be the same, and indistinguishable from one another. So will they be to those who see God’s Son a body. For it is not the body that is like the Son’s Creator. And what is lifeless cannot be the Son of life. How can a body be extended to hold the universe? Can it create, and be what it creates? And can it offer its creations all that it is and never suffer loss?

3. God does not share His function with the body. He gave the function to create on to His Son because it is His Own. It is not sinful to believe the function of the Son is murder, but it is insanity. What is the same can have no different function. Creation is the means for God’s extension, and what is His must be His Son’s as well. Either the Father and the Son are murderers, or neither is. Life makes not death, creating like itself.

4. The lovely light of your relationship is like the Love of God. It cannot yet assume the holy function God gave His Son, for your forgiveness of your brother is not completed yet, and so it cannot be extended to all creation. Each form of murder and attack that still attracts you and that you do not recognize for what it is, limits the healing and the miracles you have the power to extend to all. Yet does the Holy Spirit understand how to increase your little gifts and make them mighty. Also, He understands how your relationship is raised above the battleground, in it no more. This is your part; to realize that murder in any form is not your will. The overlooking of the battleground is now your purpose.

5. Be lifted up, and from a higher place look down upon it. From there will your perspective be quite different. Here in the midst of it, it does seem real. Here you have chosen to be part of it. Here murder is your choice. Yet from above, the choice is miracles instead of murder. And the perspective coming from this choice shows you the battle is not real, and easily escaped. Bodies may battle, but the clash of forms is meaningless. And it is over when you realize it never was begun. How can a battle be perceived as nothingness when you engage in it? How can the truth of miracles be recognized if murder is your choice?

6. When the temptation to attack rises to make your mind darkened and murderous, remember you can see the battle from above. Even in forms you do not recognize, the signs you know. There is a stab of pain, a twinge of guilt, and above all, a loss of peace. This you know well. When they occur leave not your place on high, but quickly choose a miracle instead of murder. And God Himself and all the light of Heaven will gently lean to you, and hold you up. For you have chosen to remain where He would have you, and no illusion can attack the peace of God together with His Son.

7. See no one from the battle ground, for there you look on him from nowhere. You have no reference point from where to look, where meaning can be given what you see. For only bodies could attack and murder, and if this is your purpose, then you must be one with them. Only a purpose unifies, and those who share a purpose have a mind as one. The body has no purpose of itself and must be solitary. From below, it cannot be surmounted. From above, the limits it exerts on those in battle still are gone, and not perceived. The body stands between the Father and the Heaven He created for His Son because it has no purpose.

8. Think what is given those who share their Father’s purpose, and who know that it is theirs. They want for nothing. Sorrow of any kind is inconceivable. Only the light they love is in awareness, and only love shines upon them forever. It is their past, their present and their future; always the same, eternally complete and wholly shared. They know it is impossible their happiness could ever suffer change of any kind. Perhaps you think the battleground can offer something you can win. Can it be anything that offers you a perfect calmness, and a sense of love so deep and quiet that no touch of doubt could ever mar your certainty? And that will last forever?

9. Those with the strength of God in their awareness could never think of battle. What could they gain but loss of their perfection? For everything fought for on the battleground is of the body; something it seems to offer or to own. No one who knows that he has everything could seek for limitation, nor could he value the body’s offerings. The senselessness of conquest is quite apparent from the quiet sphere above the battleground. What can conflict with everything? And what is there that offers less, yet could be wanted more? Who with the love of God upholding him could find the choice of miracles or murder hard to make? [1]

In today’s devotional text, Jesus asks us to be aware of how all forms of attack are in direct opposition to love.  When we believe that we can go into battle for God, when we can make enemies of unbelievers, when we can prophecy doom and gloom upon those who do not believe like us or worship the same way we do, when we can wish harm of any kind on anyone or anything for any reason, we choose murder over love.  We oppose the Kingdom of God every time we offer others anything but a miracle.  God is Love and in God is our only safety.  When we stay in Love, we are above the battlefield, we are safe, we offer mercy and forgiveness for the illusion of separation rather than join in the illusion! 

In our daily application of this principle, we will find many occasions to practice our function.  For this is our function – we are to overlook the battlefield of this world.  We are to be lifted up above it and never engage in it again.  We will not be drawn in by religious or philosophical debates; we will not get caught up in political battles; we will not take sides, build cases, or cast aspersions on anybody for any reason.  We are not hiding our head in the sand; we are not refusing to look upon the battles that go on; we are not to ignore the suffering, the shame, the sorrow.  We are called to look upon it and offer a miracle to everyone who still believes it is real. 

The other day I ran across something that turned my blood cold.  A historical happening, it took place hundreds of years ago; and yet when I read this account, I felt outraged and sick inside.  I felt bitter.  I had to put the book down; I did not want to read another word, to know another bit.  My heart and my mind felt dismayed by the world’s meanness.  I just can’t take it, I said to Holy Spirit.  I really hate it here. I despise these people. I despise what they stand for.  How could God ever let that happen in His Name?  Even in a dream?

Jesus tells us to look upon all the dark things that fill us with terror, dread, and shame of our humanity from the high Mind of Christ.  In the High Mind of Christ we are freed from our attachment to the bodies who would attack and murder and use people in disrespectful and hateful ways.  When we live from the low-minded realm of ego and flesh, we cannot surmount the body; when we reach for the High Mind of Christ, we can – for the limits of our flesh are not perceived in any way with Christ’s vision.  We are no longer bound to flesh by terror, we have no attachment to it for in our holiness, it cannot stand between our Father and the Heaven He created for us. 

How do we reach the High Mind of Christ where we can surmount the body and look from above on the battleground?  We consciously choose to walk only in mercy and forgiveness.  No matter how tempted we are to pick up a weapon against our enemy, to get into mouth battles with those who do not agree with us; to rant and rail against those who promote lies and twist the truth – we offer only forgiveness, mercy, and love.  For our destination is Heaven, and Heaven is not complete without those who are still engaged in warfare, violence, and murder.  We must learn to look upon the ego’s blame, bloodthirst, and carnage with no fear, but only love’s desire to help, to heal, to make better.  This is our function.  

Overlooking the battlefield, we come to understand the pointlessness of all attack, all pain, sorrow, and suffering. It only follows that we offer miracles in place of murder and revenge.  In so doing, we are kept strong and invulnerable in the quiet trust of God, in certain safety, eternal peace, and a sense of love so deep it goes forever. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 23 The war against yourself. IV Above the battleground. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons, visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


Chapter 23:III Salvation Without Compromise

1. Is it not true you do not recognize some of the forms attack can take? If it is true attack in any form will hurt you and will do so just as much as in another form that you do recognize, then it must follow that you do not always recognize the source of pain. Attack in any form is equally destructive. Its purpose does not change. Its sole intent is murder, and what form of murder serves to cover the massive guilt and frantic fear of punishment the murderer must feel? He may deny he is a murderer and justify his savagery with smiles as he attacks. Yet he will suffer and will look on his intent in nightmares where the smiles are gone, and where the purpose rises to meet his horrified awareness and pursue him still. For no one thinks of murder and escapes the guilt the thought entails. If the intent is death, what matter the form it takes?

2. Is death in any form, however lovely and charitable it may seem to be, a blessing and a sign the voice for God speaks through you to your brother? The wrapping does not make the gift you give. An empty box, however beautiful and gently given, still contains nothing. And neither the receiver nor the giver is long deceived. Withhold forgiveness from your brother and you attack him. You give him nothing and receive of him but what you gave.

3. Salvation is no compromise of any kind. To compromise is to accept but part of what you want; to take a little and give up the rest. Salvation gives up nothing. It is complete for everyone. Let the idea of compromise but enter, and the awareness of salvation’s purpose is lost because it is not recognized. It is denied where compromise has been accepted, for compromise is the belief salvation is impossible. It would maintain you can attack a little, love a little, and know the difference. Thus, it would teach a little of the same can still be different, and yet the same remain intact, as one. Does this make sense? Can it be understood?

4. This course is easy just because it makes no compromise. Yet it seems difficult to those who still believe that compromise is possible. They do not see that, if it is, salvation is attack. Yet it is certain the belief that salvation is impossible cannot uphold a quiet, calm assurance it has come. Forgiveness cannot be withheld a little. Nor is it possible to attack for this and love for that and understand forgiveness. Would you not want to recognize assault upon your peace in any form, if only thus does it become impossible that you lose sight of it? It can be kept shining before your vision, forever clear and never out of sight, if you defend it not.

5. Those who believe that peace can be defended, and that attack is justified on its behalf, cannot perceive it lies within them. How could they know? Could they accept forgiveness side by side with the belief that murder takes some forms by which their peace is saved? Would they be willing to accept the fact their savage purpose is directed against themselves? No one unites with enemies, nor is at one with them in purpose. And no one compromises with an enemy but hates him still, for what he kept from him.

6. Mistake not truce for peace, nor compromise for the escape from conflict. To be released from conflict means that it is over. The door is open; you have left the battleground. You have not lingered there in cowering hope that it will not return because the guns are stilled an instant, and the fear that haunts the place of death is not apparent. There is no safety in a battleground. You can look down on it in safety from above and not be touched. But from within it you can find no safety. Not one tree left still standing will shelter you. Not one illusion of protection stands against the faith in murder. Here stands the body, torn between the natural desire to communicate and the unnatural intent to murder and to die. Think you the form that murder takes can offer safety? Can guilt be absent from a battlefield?[1]

In today’s devotional text, Jesus tells us that all are saved, or none are saved.  There can be no compromise in this. We cannot offer someone guilt and not be guilty ourselves. For we are one. And when we forgive, we forgive wholly.  We do not forgive our brothers for this but not for that.  We do not make the projections of sin, guilt, shame, or any call at all for attack of any kind on anyone for anything because our faith is not in this world’s illusions.  Our faith is not in sin, our faith is in Christ, our faith is in the perfect Sonship of God.

Salvation does not make deals with the world for God’s Creation is His Creation and cannot exist outside of Heaven. Salvation does not come for an elect for there are no elect – we are equal Sons of God and each one of us, no matter how the world may try to label us and discount our worth, no matter how low on the totem pole, no matter how crass and crude and cruel – are beloved of God and perfect in His sight.  As Sons of God, as part of the Brotherhood of Christ, we would never see any of our brothers suffer; we would not dream of going up in the Rapture and letting anybody behind to suffer torments forever; we could never enter the joy and bliss of eternity knowing that our brothers were trapped in torment, agony, and despair. 

There is no peace in a salvation plan that would promote attack, conflict, judgment, and condemnation.  A salvation plan with no peace is not salvation but rather another form of hell. If your salvation does not bring you peace, if your salvation means you leave your loved ones behind, if your salvation is a constant battle with the devil, with evil, with suffering and pain – it is not the salvation plan of God.  For God’s salvation plan is complete and there is no compromise in it.  If I am saved you are saved and if we are saved, all are saved – for there is no kindness, goodness, forgiveness, or mercy in saving one and not all. 

We never have to defend this truth for truth needs no defense.  Our traditional holy books and sacred texts teach that salvation is only for those who latch on to God’s Chosen people, who pray a certain way, who believe in the blood of Jesus, who revere the blessed virgin, who are baptized in water.  We are all free to believe what we choose to believe, but there is only one truth and it is the same for all and it applies to all.  If God is Love, He cannot be a God of vengeance and of wrath.  If God is our Father, our Creator, and His Love never fails, Creation can never fail. If God is Everything, there cannot be anything except for God.  When we take this to the final conclusion, we know then that anything that is not perfect love and peace and joy, can only be an illusion, it can only be a dream, it can only be a fictional realm of what could be if it were possible for truth to also be a lie; for love to also be fear; for peace to also be conflict; for joy to also be sorrow. 

As long as we believe in opposites and opposition we engage in the imaginary battle between the forces of good and evil.  To be saved from these meaningless, ongoing, fictional conflicts is to leave the battleground!  When we reach for the Higher Mind of Christ, we awaken to the realm beyond the illusion, we see through the veil of sin, we no longer try to find safety in attack, murder, and taking sides.  There is no compromise in this – when I awaken I awaken you and you awaken and you awaken the next guy and so forth.  All around the world, the light comes on.  All around the world, Christ returns – not in the sky to whisk the ones who are better than all the rest of us away to their eternal bliss – but in our minds and hearts that we are reestablished as God’s Beloved Son together, as One.  

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 23 The war upon yourself. III. Salvation without compromise. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


II. The Laws of Chaos[1] – Commentary

In yesterday’s post we read the entire 22 paragraphs of “The Laws of Chaos.”  In today’s post we will take a calm and careful look at these principles in order to see beyond them.  We will not attempt to understand the actual laws themselves for they mean nothing, but we will understand what they are for they appear to be an obstacle to reason and to truth.  The purpose of the laws of chaos is to make our existence meaningless and to deny the truth not only about who and what we are, but also to deny the reality and truth of God and the Love which He is and has for all that is.    

The laws of chaos are the laws that rule the world of perception.  But just as perception is not truth, neither are the laws that govern it.  As we take a quiet, peaceful approach to our study today and look upon each of the five laws, let us take as much time as we need to understand and find application illustrations in our daily lives to drive these lessons home in our minds and expand our conscious awareness of how these laws seem to operate in the world and keep us trapped in an illusion of separation from God and Creation.   Yesterday as our ACIM study group discussed this section together we were astounded at how this section of the Course answered so many of the questions and issues we were puzzling over in our personal lives. 

Jesus emphasizes the order of the laws in such a way that it would behoove us to remember them in the order in which He instructs us for the first of the laws leads into the second and so forth.  They are:

1.  Truth is different for everyone.  

2.  Everyone must sin.

3.  We get to define God as separate from ourselves.

4.  We have what we have taken. 

5.  There is a substitute for love.

The first chaotic law maintains that each individual has a different set of thoughts which make him unique from others.  This comes from believing that there is a hierarchy of illusions – some hallucinations work better or are more “true” than others. Every separate person establishes a reality about himself and makes it true by attacking what somebody else values.  This can be justified and rewarded accordingly because everybody makes up a different “reality,” and then fights to make it true against those who have a different “reality.”  My religion is not your religion.  My religion is the right religion – yours is wrong and sinful and therefore you are my enemy unless you choose to come to your senses and join with me in my reality.  This is the basis of all “holy” wars and all conflict in general. 

The first principle of miracles tells us that there are no degrees of truth in illusion.  Illusion is illusion – and all belief systems are equally untrue – miracles apply to everyone – one lie is no more difficult to bring to truth than another.  When I bring my illusions to you and you bring your illusions to me, all we can do is argue.  But when we bring our illusions to truth, they simply disappear.  We do not have to suffer shame, regrets, or hellish torments – we made a mistake, we thought it was this way but now we know better.  Yay for us.  An illusion, a lie, a mistake – nothing about any of these can be more resistant to the truth than another.  Truth cannot be tampered with, and it is the same for everyone. 

When we take a careful look at the second law of chaos, we can see how much the world’s religions cherish sin because sin pays big dividends. Sin sells!  Sin entices us all and we shiver and quiver at thoughts of sin.  I can remember growing up in the Pentecostal religion and being so thrilled at all the testimonies people gave about being set free from their lives of sin.  I could hardly wait to grow up and sin myself so I would have an exciting testimony to share!  The preachers loved to preach against sin, they passed collection plates to gather tithes and offerings that would go to missions to deliver those still living in sin and bound for hell.  For sin was a powerful force that could cause God to punish His Son, to turn against His Own Creation and place the sinner in a place beyond correction and beyond forgiveness. 

When we look upon each other as born into sin and that we must sin in order to need salvation, we are saying that the Will of God created us in such a way that our own destruction is inevitable.  This does not turn our hearts and minds to love God but rather to fear Him.  This does not make us trust God but rather mistrust Him for what Father would turn upon His Own and vilify His Son for making a mistake and make him bleed and suffer and die in order to win His favor and affection. 

God the Father then is different from His Son.  God is big and powerful and grudgingly merciful and grudgingly loving only in certain cases and with certain people.  Even those pet relationships that God has with His chosen are tales of opposition, outrage, divine wrath, uncertainty, and torment.  One must become weak in defeat and supplicate to the one who has conquered.  This is not a God that we go to with perfect trust and happiness, joy and respect but rather a God we dread, that brings us low to make Himself look bigger and stronger, a God we always have to make excuses for, wonder why He didn’t answer our prayers, wonder why He took our loved ones, wonder why those He says He loves the most seem to suffer just like everyone else! 

Accepting the illusion that we are all sinful, that we must all sin and fall short of the Glory of God, leads directly to the third preposterous belief that makes the separation from God go on forever.  When we believe we are born into sin, we believe in a God that holds us accountable for what we cannot help, and we cannot truly love Him.  For only the corrupt would make us pay for something we cannot help. And so our love for God is tainted by the idea that we have been cursed for something that we are ignorant of doing, that we cannot help, that we cannot escape.  That God is not for us, but against us.   

I have come to see that this lack of understanding is why so many beautiful Christian people I know, and love, are always “fighting the devil,” “going to battle with the enemy,” and going to great lengths to prove their love for God through good works, pleading the blood of Jesus, and believing that God requires a blood sacrifice for their salvation. They choose to fear God rather than love God.

It is impossible to love that which we fear, for fear is the opposite of love.   When we believe that God is bloodthirsty, must be appeased and worshipped, adored and flattered, we deny ourselves the unity and oneness with God for Which we were created. No matter how hard we pray, no matter how many times we go to church, no matter how much we read the bible, we will always feel as if we are not enough, we will always feel as if God did us a big favor, but what did we really do that was all that wrong?  Our salvation then will be a series of going to battle with the devil, an ongoing conflict which seems to stretch throughout eternity.

This is the ego’s version of salvation, and it can never save us for it is chaotic, it makes no sense, and it keeps us in conflict with one another and with God.  In this version of salvation, God which is All in All, has an opposite, which would make God not be All in All.  For if God is Everything than anything that is not of God must be nothing.  It is unworthy of the Brotherhood of Christ to give the notion of sin, the devil, of Satan, or Lucifer power in our lives or in the lives of others.  When we give credence to such teaching, Atonement becomes a myth, for as long as we have to keep doing battle with an imaginary enemy, we are not taking a stand for truth and accepting the truth of God. 

When we look at the fourth law of chaos, we realize that the false idea we have about ourselves, the ego, only value what it takes.  When we believe that we can gain from the loss of another, we are not practicing the law of God’s Kingdom which is to receive, to truly have, we must give to receive.  We can never take something away from someone else, for if I steal something from you, I am stealing the most important thing I have from myself. I am forgetting our oneness, our Brotherhood, our unity in Christ. 

Yet the first three of the ego’s laws must lead to this idea of taking from others to gain for ourselves.  It is the law of this world.  We will take from the rich and give to the poor, and no matter how much we try to do this or how miserably it fails, we keep trying to do this and it never works.  Nobody gets riches; everyone becomes poorer.  Enemies do not give willingly to those who despise them; enemies do not value sharing the things they value, and so our whole aim then is to take what they would keep from us by force.  We will make them give it to us because if they are hiding it from us and not sharing it then it must be worth having. 

Pay particular attention to paragraph ten and reflect upon how we justify taking by force what we feel someone else is withholding from us.  We learn early on that the kind cannot survive in this world and we learn just as early on that we must take or else be taken from.

But what is this precious thing that other people have, and we do not?  Why do we feel so justified in our anger and dismay over what others seem to have that we do not?  They always seem to have something we want but cannot seem to figure out how to get it.  And then suddenly it dawns upon us that they took it from us, they hid it from us, they had it in their power to be nice, gentle, generous, and good to us, but they purposefully chose to withhold all that and give us the dregs, shun us, deny us, and make us feel empty, lost, confused, and poor. 

They hid it where we would never think to look!  They hid it in their body – underneath their skin, the perfect hiding place for what belongs to us not them.  And so, we justify our attacks upon each other’s body – we justify war and weapons of mass destruction, we sacrifice each other’s body so that we can have all that they were keeping from us.  We hate each other to the death for the other took this precious pearl from us and hid it from us and would let us suffer and die.  So, when I attack you for what I think you are hiding from me, I only attack you in self-defense.  You deserve my anger, my wrath, my wishes of death upon you. 

But what were you hiding from me?  What did you do to me that you should die so that I can live?  And that is where the final law of chaos comes in – for it would hold that there is a substitute for love.  This substitute for love is the magical cure for all our pain – it gives us a good reason to attack each other, it justifies our desire to take vengeance, it is the ego’s form of salvation for as salvation calls for us to love each other; ego’s salvation is born of enmity.  Whereas holy relationships are born of two equals joining to add love and peace and joy to God’s Kingdom, unholy relationships are based upon the substitute for love – we will wrest from each other what the other has hidden from us and we will wrangle together for power and control, we will make unhappy, and we will call it love.

Again, what is it that you are hiding from me inside your body that I have a right to attack you for, this substitute for love?  What is it that I am willing to see you die that I may take from you?  What is it that you want from me and which you will never stop attacking me for stealing from you?  In paragraph 13, even God seems to take vengeance out upon us for withholding this substitute for love from Him. 

When I asked Holy Spirit to show me what the substitute for love was, it became clear to me that it was our desire to be “special,” to distinguish ourselves, to be more than and greater than and brighter than all the rest.  We get married with the idea that our mates will make us special, we make a bargain – you will be special to me, and I will be special to you and all hell breaks loose when one or the other or both in many cases fail to make the other feel special.  The religious texts that I was taught when I was growing up all revolved around God’s need to be loved, adored, worshipped, praised, and made to feel special by His chosen ones.  We want our friends, followers, classmates, workmates, cellmates, and others to make us feel special because specialness is the substitute we accept in place of love. 

And yet Jesus says that we will never be special, for we are mutual Sons of God and God created us to be like Him in oneness.  There is no room for specialness in love, for love is all-encompassing and to love one is to love all. 

These are the laws of chaos; we will never find meaning in them.  They will not save us for they substitute for the love, peace, and joy which is rightfully ours as God’s Son.  To believe in them is to uphold insanity and reverse the laws of God.  When we follow these laws, we look forward to dying, to get out of what we call life in the flesh.  To believe in them is to believe in flesh and to disregard who and what we really are.  When we practice the laws of chaos, we are blind to what they really are – for they have no meaning, no worth, and no value. 

We know that attack in any form at all cannot be love; that murder no matter what form it takes is always death; that condemnation is never a blessing.  We find our salvation in each other, not through attack, not through trying to find our specialness in each other, not through taking to have, but by sharing our love and accepting no substitute.  I cannot find my salvation in you by harming you in any way.  The salvation that you hold out for me and that I hold out to you is not found in judgment or condemnation.  No matter how physically beautiful you are, no matter how sexy, no matter how much personal charm, wit, and intelligence you may possess – your light will never outshine mine nor will my light make yours look dim.  If you seek specialness from me, you are not my friend nor can I be yours, for the desire for specialness is our destruction.   

Be careful that you do not think that you are above believing the laws of chaos, for Jesus tells us that we do believe in them; that we continue to dress up the symbols of death and decay, sin and punishment in an attempt to preserve the laws of chaos.  We believe in these laws for the form they takes speaks to our traditional religions, our “holy” rites and rituals, our beloved hymns, and patriotic practices.  We have come to love the idea of specialness – our country is special among all the nations of the earth, our church is special, our political party is special, our family, our community, our spouses, our houses.  It only seems natural to seek to distinguish ourselves, to desire recognition, to make our loved ones proud and our enemies jealous.  Many of our religious practices are based upon the assumption that only a few are saved while the rest will perish.  We are taught that God wages war upon the world and upholds the slaughter of all who are different from us.  Jesus asks us to look beyond the form that the laws of chaos take and look calmly at the content to find how we have followed these laws, perhaps unwittingly. 

In paragraph nineteen, Jesus states that any realm apart from Heaven is illusion. There is no life except in Heaven.  Dead or alive in the world, it matters not at all for we are in an illusion of our own making.   A realm which makes opposites and substitutes for reality cannot exist except in illusions, and yet these illusions seem an eternal barrier to Heaven.  When we lack faith in love, chaos becomes our reality.  Believe we are sinners, faith in chaos follows.  The fall from Heaven begins in the practice of chaos; the fall from Heaven ends when we begin to examine and question and see beyond. 

As we draw to a close in today’s commentary, Jesus asks us to refrain from taking one step in the descent to hell.  It is a slippery slope – take one step and the rest will follow.  When we lose our faith in love it is all too easy to practice attack, judgement, condemnation, and ill will.  When we fall into the lower realm it takes but an instant to regain our footing, to know our place in Heaven, to be certain in our trust and know where we belong and Whom we belong to.  All we have to do is ask, to remember our holiness, to walk hand in the hand with our Holy Brother and Friend. 

[1] A Course in Miracles, Chapter 23 The war against yourself. II The laws of chaos. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


1. The “laws” of chaos can be brought to light, though never understood. Chaotic laws are hardly meaningful, and therefore out of reason’s sphere. Yet they appear to be an obstacle to reason and to truth. Let us, then, look upon them calmly, that we may look beyond them, understanding what they are, not what they would maintain. It is essential it be understood what they are for, because it is their purpose to make meaningless and to attack the truth. Here are the laws that rule the world you made. And yet they govern nothing and need not be broken; merely looked upon and gone beyond.

2. The first chaotic law is that the truth is different for everyone. Like all these principles, this one maintains that each is separate and has a different set of thoughts that set him off from others. This principle evolves from the belief there is a hierarchy of illusions; some are more valuable and therefore true. Each one establishes this for himself and makes it true by his attack on what another values. And this is justified because the values differ, and those who hold them seem to be unlike, and therefore enemies.

3. Think how this seems to interfere with the first principle of miracles. For this establishes degrees of truth among illusions, making it seem that some of them are harder to overcome than others. If it were realized that they are all the same and equally untrue, it would be easy, then, to understand that miracles apply to all of them. Errors of any kind can be corrected because they are untrue. When brought to truth instead of to each other, they merely disappear. No part of nothing can be more resistant to the truth then can another.

4. The second law of chaos, dear indeed to every worshipper of sin, is that each one must sin, and therefore deserves attack and death. This principle, closely related to the first, is the demand that errors call for punishment and not correction. For the destruction of the one who makes the error places him beyond correction and beyond forgiveness. What he has done is thus interpreted as an irrevocable sentence upon himself, which God Himself is powerless to overcome. Sin cannot be remitted, being the belief the Son of God can make mistakes for which his own destruction becomes inevitable.

5. Think what this seems to do to the relationship between the Father and the Son. Now it appears that they could never be one again. For one must always be condemned, and by the other. Now are they different, and enemies. And their relationship is one of opposition, just as separate aspects of the Son meet only to conflict but not to join. One becomes weak, the other strong by his defeat. And fear of God and of each other now appears as sensible, made real by what the Son of God has done both to himself and his Creator.

6. The arrogance on which the laws of chaos stand could not be more apparent than emerges here. Here is a principle that would define what the Creator of reality must be; what He must think and what He must believe; and how He must respond, believing it. It is not seen as even necessary that He be asked about the truth of what has been established for His belief. His Son can tell Him this, and He has but the choice whether to take his word for it or be mistaken. This leads directly to the third preposterous belief that seems to make chaos eternal. For if God cannot be mistaken, He must accept His Son’s belief in what He is and hate Him for it.

7. See how the fear of God is reinforced by this third principle. Now it becomes impossible to turn to Him for help in misery. For now He has become the “enemy” who caused it, to whom appeal is useless. Nor can salvation lie within the Son, whose every aspect seems to be at war with Him, and justified in its attack. And now is conflict made inevitable, beyond the help of God. For now salvation must remain impossible, because the Savior has become the enemy.

8. There can be no release and no escape. Atonement thus becomes a myth, and vengeance, not forgiveness, is the will of God. For where all this begins, there is no sight of help that can succeed. Only distraction can be the outcome. And God Himself seems to be siding with it, to overcome His Son. Think not the ego will enable you to find escape from what it wants. That is the function of this course, which does not value what the ego cherishes.

9. The ego values only what it takes. This leads to the fourth law of chaos, which, if the others are accepted, must be true. This seeming law is the belief you have what you have taken. By this, another’s loss becomes your gain, and thus it fails to recognize that you can never take away save from yourself. Yet all the other laws must lead to this. For enemies do not give willingly to one another, nor would they seek to share the things they value. And what your enemies would keep from you must be worth having, because they keep it hidden from your sight.

10. All of the mechanisms of madness are seen emerging here: the “enemy” made strong by keeping hidden the valuable inheritance that should be yours; your justified position and attack for what has been withheld; and the inevitable loss the enemy must suffer to save yourself. Thus do the guilty ones protect their “innocence.” Were they not forced into this foul attack by the unscrupulous behavior of the enemy, they would respond with only kindness. But in a savage world the kind cannot survive, so they must take or else be taken from.

11. And now there is a vague unanswered question not yet explained. What is this precious thing, this priceless pearl, this hidden secret treasure, to be wrested in righteous wrath from this most treacherous cunning enemy? It must be what you want but never found. And now you “understand” the reason why you found it not. For it was taken from you by this enemy and hidden where you would not think to look. He hid it in his body, making it the cover for his guilt, the hiding place for what belongs to you. Now must his body be destroyed and sacrificed, that you may have that which belongs to you. His treachery demands his death, that you may live. And you attack only in self-defense.

12. But what is it you want that needs his death? Can you be sure your murderous attack is justified unless you know what it is for? And here a final principle of chaos comes to the “rescue.” It holds there is a substitute for love. This is the magic that will cure all of your pain; the missing factor in your madness that makes it sane. This is the reason why you must attack. Here is what makes your vengeance justified. Behold, unveiled, the ego’s secret gift, torn from your brother’s body, hidden there in malice and in hatred for the one to whom the gift belongs. He would deprive you of the secret ingredient that would give meaning to your life. The substitute for love, born of your enmity to your brother, must be salvation. It has no substitute, and there is only one. And all your relationships have but the purpose of seizing it and making it your own.

13. Never is your possession made complete. And never will your brother cease attack on you for what you stole. Nor will God end His vengeance upon both, for in His madness He must have this substitute for love and kill you both. You who believe you walk in sanity with feet on solid ground, and through a world where meaning can be found, consider this: these are the laws on which your “sanity” appears to rest. These are the principles which make the ground beneath your feet seem solid. And it is here you look for meaning. These are the laws you made for your salvation. They hold in place the substitute for Heaven which you prefer. This is their purpose: they were made for this. There is no point in asking what they mean. That is apparent. The means of madness must be insane. Are you as certain that you realize the goal is madness?

14. No one wants madness, nor does anyone cling to his madness if he sees that this is what it is. What protects madness is the belief that it is true. It is the function of insanity to take the place of truth. It must be seen as truth to be believed. And if it is the truth, then must its opposite, which was the truth before, be madness now. Such a reversal, completely turned around, with madness sanity, illusions true, attack a kindness, hatred love, and murder benediction, is the goal the laws of chaos serve. These are the means by which the laws of God appear to be reversed. Here do the laws of sin appear to hold love captive and let sin go free.

15. These do not seem to be the goals of chaos, for by the great reversal they appear to be the laws of order. How could it not be so? Chaos is lawlessness and has no laws. To be believed, its seeming laws must be perceived as real. Their goal of madness must be seen as sanity. And fear, with ashen lips and sightless eyes, blinded and terrible to look upon, is lifted to the throne of love, its dying conqueror, its substitute, the savior from salvation. How lovely do the laws of fear make death appear. Give thanks unto the hero on love’s throne, who saved the Son of God for fear and death!

16. And yet, how can it be that laws like these can be believed? There is a strange device that makes it possible. Nor is it unfamiliar; we have seen how it appears to function many times before. In truth it does not function, yet in dreams, where only shadows play the major roles, is seems most powerful. No law of chaos could compel belief but for the emphasis on form and disregard of content. No one who thinks that one of these laws is true sees what it says. Some forms it takes seem to have meaning, and that is all.

17. How can some forms of murder not mean death? Can an attack in any form be love? What form of condemnation is a blessing? Who makes his savior powerless and finds salvation? Let not the form of the attack on him deceive you. You cannot seek to harm him and be saved. Who can find safety from attack by turning on himself? How can it matter what the form this madness takes? It is a judgment that defeats itself, condemning what it says it wants to save. Be not deceived when madness takes the form you think is lovely. What is intent on your destruction is not your friend.

18. You would maintain, and think it true, that you do not believe these senseless laws, nor act upon them. And when you look at what they say, they cannot be believed. Brother, you do believe them. For how else could you perceive the form they take, with content such as this? Can any form of this be tenable? Yet you believe them for the form they take, and do not recognize the content. It never changes. Can you paint rosy lips upon a skeleton, dress it in loveliness, pet it and pamper it, and make it live? And can you be content with an illusion that you are living?

19. There is no life outside of Heaven. Where God created life, there life must be. In any state apart from Heaven life is illusion. At best it seems like life, at worst, like death. Yet both are judgments on what is not life, equal in their inaccuracy and lack of meaning. Life not in heaven is impossible, and what is not in Heaven is not anywhere. Outside of Heaven, only the conflict of illusion stands; senseless, impossible, and beyond all reason, and yet perceived as an eternal barrier to Heaven. Illusions are but forms. Their content is never true.

20. The laws of chaos govern all illusions. Their forms conflict, making it seem quite possible to value some above the others. Yet each one rests as surely on the belief the laws of chaos are the laws of order as do the others. Each one upholds these laws completely, offering a certain witness that these laws are true. The seeming gentler forms of the attack are no less certain in their witnessing, or their results. Certain it is illusions will bring fear because of the beliefs that they imply, not for their form. And lack of faith in love, in any form, attests to chaos as reality.

21. From the belief in sin, the faith in chaos must follow. It is because it follows that it seems to be a logical conclusion; a valid step in ordered thought. The steps to chaos do follow neatly from their starting point. Each is a different form in the progression of truth’s reversal, leading still deeper into terror and away from truth. Think not one step is smaller than another, nor that return from one is easier. The whole descent from Heaven lies in each one.  And where your thinking starts, there must it end.

22. Brother, take not one step in the descent to hell. For having taken one, you will not recognize the rest for what they are. And they will follow. Attack in any form has placed your foot upon the twisted stairway that leads from Heaven. Yet any instant it is possible to have all this undone. How can you know whether you chose the stairs to Heaven or the way to hell? Quite easily. How do you feel? Is peace in your awareness? Are you certain which way you go? And are you sure the goal of Heaven can be reached? If not, you walk alone. Ask, then, your Friend to join with you, and give you certainty of where you go.[1]

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 23 The war against yourself. II. The laws of chaos. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 workbook lessons, visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0

ACIM – CHAPTER 23 THE WAR AGAINST YOURSELF I. The Irreconcilable Beliefs

ACIM – Chapter 23. I.

1. The memory of God comes to the quiet mind. It cannot come where there is conflict, for a mind at war against itself remembers not eternal gentleness. The means of war are not the means of peace, and what the war-like would remember is not love. War is impossible unless belief in victory is cherished. Conflict within you must imply that you believe the ego has the power to be victorious. Why else would you identify with it? Surely you realize the ego is at war with God. Certain it is it has no enemy. Yet just as certain is its fixed belief it has an enemy that it must overcome and will succeed.

2. Do you not realize a war against yourself would be a war on God? Is victory conceivable? And if it were, is this a victory that you would want? The death of God, if it were possible, would be your death. Is this a victory?  The ego always marches to defeat, because it thinks that triumph over you is possible. And God thinks otherwise. This is no war; only the mad believe the Will of God can be attacked and overthrown. You may identify with this belief, but never will it be more than madness. And fear will reign in madness and will seem to have replaced love there. This is the conflict’s purpose. And to those who think that it is possible, the means seem real.

3. Be certain that it is impossible God and the ego, or yourself and it, will ever meet. You seem to meet and make your strange alliances on grounds that have no meaning, for your beliefs converge upon the body, the ego’s chosen home, which you believe is yours. You meet at a mistake, an error in your self-appraisal. The ego joins with an illusion of yourself you share with it. And yet illusions cannot join. They are the same, and they are nothing. Their joining lies in nothingness; two are as meaningless as one or as a thousand. The ego joins with nothing, being nothing. The victory it seeks is meaningless as is itself.

4. Brother, the war against yourself is almost over. The journey’s end is at the place of peace. Would you not now accept the peace offered you here? This “enemy” you fault as an intruder on your peace is here transformed, before your sight, into the giver of your peace. Your “enemy” was God Himself, to whom all conflict, triumph and attack of any kind are all unknown. He loves you perfectly, completely and eternally. The Son of God at war with His Creator is a condition as ridiculous as nature roaring at the wind in anger, proclaiming it is part of itself no more. Could nature possibly establish this, and make it true? Nor is it up to you to say what shall be part of you and what is kept apart.

5. The war against yourself was undertaken to teach the Son of God that he is not himself, and not his Father’s Son. For this, the memory of his Father must be forgotten. It is forgotten in the body’s life, and if you think you are a body, you will believe you have forgotten it. Yet truth can never be forgotten by itself, and you have not forgotten what you are. Only a strange illusion of yourself, a wish to triumph over what you are, remembers not.

6. The war against yourself is but the battle of two illusions, struggling to make them different from each other, in the belief the one that conquers will be true. There is no conflict between them and the truth. Nor are they different from each other. Both are not true. And so, it matters not what form they take. What made them is insane, and they remain part of what made them. Madness holds out no menace to reality and has no influence upon it. Illusions cannot triumph over truth, nor can they threaten it in any way. And the reality that they deny is not a part of them.

7. What you remember is a part of you. For you must be as God created you. Truth does not fight against illusions, nor do illusions fight against the truth. Illusions battle only with themselves. Being fragmented, they fragment. But truth is indivisible and far beyond their little reach. You will remember what you know when you have learned you cannot be in conflict. One illusion about yourself can battle with another, yet the war of two illusions is a state where nothing happens. There is no victor and there is no victory. And truth stands radiant, apart from conflict, untouched and quiet in the peace of God.

8. Conflict must be between two forces. It cannot exist between one power and nothingness. There is nothing you could attack that is not part of you. And by attacking it you make two illusions of yourself, in conflict with each other. And this occurs whenever you look on anything that God created with anything but love. Conflict is fearful, for it is the birth of fear. Yet what is born of nothing cannot win reality through battle. Why would you fill your world with conflicts with yourself? Let all this madness be undone for you, and turn in peace to the remembrance of God, still shining in your quiet mind.

9. See how the conflict of illusions disappears when it is brought to truth! For it seems real only as long as it is seen as war between conflicting truths; the conqueror to be the truer, the more real, and the vanquisher of the illusion that was less real, made an illusion by defeat. Thus, conflict is the choice between illusions, one to be crowned as real, the other vanquished and despised. Here will the Father never be remembered. Yet no illusion can invade His home and drive Him out of what He loves forever. And what He loves must be forever quiet and at peace because it is His home.

10. You who are beloved of Him are no illusion, being as true and holy as Himself. The stillness of your certainty of Him and of yourself is home to Both of You, Who dwell as one and not apart. Open the door of His most holy home, and let forgiveness sweep away all trace of the belief in sin that keeps God homeless and His Son with Him. You are not a stranger in the House of God. Welcome your brother to the home where God has set him in serenity and peace and dwells with him. Illusions have no place where love abides, protecting you from everything that is not true. You dwell in peace as limitless as its Creator, and everything is given those who would remember Him. Over His home the Holy Spirit watches, sure that its peace can never be disturbed,

11. How can the resting place of God turn on itself, and seek to overcome the one who dwells there? And think what happens when the House of God perceives itself divided. The altar disappears, the light grows dim, the temple of the Holy One becomes a house of sin. And nothing is remembered except illusions. Illusions can conflict, because their forms are different. And they do battle only to establish which form is true.

12. Illusion meets illusion; truth, itself. The meeting of illusions leads to war. Peace, looking on itself, extends itself. War is the condition in which fear is born and grows and seeks to dominate. Peace is the state where love abides and seeks to share itself. Conflict and peace are opposites. Where one abides the other cannot be, where either goes the other disappears. So is the memory of God obscured in minds that have become illusions’ battleground. Yet far beyond this senseless war it shines, ready to be remembered when you side with peace.[1]

In today’s devotional text, Jesus calls us to peace.  When we experience conflict, one side of the conflict is not God and the other side ego or the devil.  When we experience conflict both sides are different forms of the same illusion.  This is why we are not to get caught up in any internal or outward conflict.  We are to simply accept our holiness and be thankful for it.  To allow our minds to debate and to constantly stand in judgment of us, sometimes we have a godly day and sometimes we have a not-so-godly day – is to engage in nothingness.  Neither is it good practice to participate in political debates, social reform, or any other seemingly good cause of the world.  The many forms of the illusion are meant to be at odds with each other, designed to attract conflict, war, and taking sides.  There is never a “good” guy and a “bad” guy – it is all nothingness.  There is never a victor for there is never victory. The illusion’s victory is always temporary and always leads to more battle, more conflict, more problems. 

We meet God in peace. As long as we stay involved in the world, as long as we identify with our bodies, as long as we believe there is something to be gained through attack – we will not remember God for the memory of God is obscured in minds that have become the battleground for the illusion. 

When we turn on ourselves or each other we turn on God for God has created us in unity and fellowship; we thrive and survive in the Sonship of love and joy and peace.  When we make enemies of one another, we make an enemy of God.  When thoughts of attack, grudges, and a litany of resentments begins to form in our minds toward others, our best bet is to take the ones we are thinking of to the holy instant and commune with them there.  This is a wonderful practice that delivers us from allowing anything that comes between us to become a full-blown attack against all that God stands for in our lives!

If I start thinking of all the times you hurt my feelings, stood me up, failed to say or do the right thing, I am to consciously choose peace.  Consciously choosing peace strengthens our faith and trains our mind to stay clean, pure, and healthy.  Ruminating upon the ways in which we perceive others as failing us or victimizing us is an attack upon ourselves.  While we are dwelling on the sins and shortcomings of this one or that one, our minds are taken up with fleshly concerns, we are not looking with love upon anything, we make the illusion real to ourselves. When we begin to believe in what the ego projects upon the world, we will not feel safe, loved, or at peace.

Today in your personal devotional practice, choose peace.  Let all cause for attack upon others, all defense against the woes of the world, all arguments and debates you may have with others go.  Recognize them for what they are – nothing.  Instead of getting caught up in the ego’s projections, choose peace and share peace.  This is the way we remember God and to remember God is to remember Love. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 23 The war against yourself. I. The irreconcilable beliefs. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit: 

comment 0


1. Do you not see the opposite of frailty and weakness is sinlessness? Innocence is strength, and nothing else is strong. The sinless cannot fear, for sin of any kind is weakness. The show of strength attack would use to cover frailty conceals it not, for how can the unreal be hidden? No one is strong who has an enemy, and no one can attack unless he thinks he has. Belief in enemies is therefore the belief in weakness, and what is weak is not the Will of God. Being opposed to it, it is God’s “enemy.” And God is feared as an opposing will.

2. How strange indeed becomes this war against yourself! You will believe that everything you use for sin can hurt you and become your enemy. And you will fight against it and try to weaken it because of this; and you will think that you succeeded, and attack again. It is as certain you will fear what you attack as it is sure that you will love what you perceive as sinless. He walks in peace who travels sinlessly along the way love shows him. For love walks with him there, protecting him from fear. And he will see only the sinless, who cannot attack.

3. Walk you in glory, with your head held high, and fear no evil. The innocent are safe because they share their innocence. Nothing they see is harmful, for their awareness of the truth releases everything from the illusion of harmfulness. And what seemed harmful now stands shining in their innocence, released from sin and fear and happily returned to love. They share the strength of love because they looked on innocence. and every error disappeared because they saw it not. Who looks for glory finds it where it is. Where could it be but in the innocent?

4. Let not the little interferers pull you to littleness. There can be no attraction of guilt in innocence. Think what a happy world you walk, with truth beside you! Do not give up this world of freedom for a little sigh of seeming sin, nor for a tiny stirring of guilt’s attraction. Would you, for all these meaningless distractions, lay Heaven aside? Your destiny and purpose are far beyond them, in the clean place where littleness does not exist. Your purpose is at variance with littleness of any kind. And so, it is at variance with sin.

5. Let us not let littleness lead God’s Son into temptation. His glory is beyond it, measureless and timeless as eternity. Do not let time intrude upon your sight of him. Leave him not frightened and alone in his temptation but help him rise above it and perceive the light of which he is a part. Your innocence will light the way to his, and so is yours protected and kept in your awareness. For who can know his glory, and perceive the little and the weak about him? Who can walk trembling in a fearful world, and realize that Heaven’s glory shines on him?

6. Nothing around you but is part of you. Look on it lovingly and see the light of heaven in it. So will you come to understand all that is given you. In kind forgiveness will the world sparkle and shine, and everything you once thought sinful now will be reinterpreted as part of Heaven. How beautiful it is to walk, clean and redeemed and happy, through a world in bitter need of the redemption that your innocence bestows upon it! What can you value more than this? For here is your salvation and your freedom. And it must be complete if you would recognize it.[1]

Today in your devotional practice, contemplate the meaning of “innocence is strength and nothing else is strong.”  What do you consider sin and who do you consider sinful?  If in our weakness, we are afraid and rise to defend ourselves against those who are stronger and meaner and smarter than we are, is our defense a show of strength or a tell of weakness?  If I walk through the world with no fear does this prove my integrity and ultimate faith in God or reveal my ignorance?  If I have no enemies, would I have any cause for attack?  Is God’s Will for me and for you, for all of humanity to be weak so He can be the big strong one on which we depend or is God’s Will for us to be like Him?  When we are not like God, in other words, when we do not accept our Sonship and instead cling to our puny, vulnerable, volatile humanity, are we opposed to Him, making of God an enemy?  And why should we fear God if God is for us and not against us, if God’s Will is for us to be like Him, loving, joyful, peaceful – forever as His Son? 

These are the questions that I asked myself as I studied this text yesterday and this morning.  In paragraph two Jesus asks us to reflect upon the war we have against ourselves.  We attack that which we think of as sinful.  What do we attack?  Someone comes in our house to rob and steal from us – we want to attack them no less than we want to attack someone who makes fun of our family members, disrespects our country’s flag, or disrupts our sleep and quiet time.  Seldom are we compelled to attack those who have not sinned against us or someone we know or public safety in general.  We rant and rail about the same things over and over, proving our point, driving it home, making sure we have left no stone unturned!  And yet what we perceive as sinless – we love. 

There is no greater joy than to welcome someone into your home who is appreciative, trustworthy, and respectful.  How we love those whom we can trust not to gossip about us behind our backs, who are truly happy at our advance, who show up with something to share rather than an intent to take advantage!  We love those who tell us how great our kids are, who congratulate us on our choice of mate, who do not poke fun and sneer at our efforts to advance.  And how appreciative we are of those who allow us to rest, respect our need for privacy and quiet, and do not interrupt our creative flow.  We will perceive such people as saints, not sinners.  We will think of them as angels, even, perhaps.  When we speak of them, we will speak of them with appreciation and warmth. 

We walk in peace when we practice holiness.  Holiness is purity, it is the way of love, it is the call to address every sin against us, all that would cause us to rant and rail, to attack and condemn with honesty, understanding, with the goal to correct and heal.  This is the way love teaches us to be.  When we have fully committed ourselves to Sonship, love is with us always, protecting us from going into attack, protecting us from fearing one another, we will only look upon each other with mercy, with the deep and abiding understanding of our mutual need for help and healing.  You will teach me what I need to learn from you, and I will teach you and we will both learn together, in love and in support of one another.  Instead of attacking me for my ignorance, you will obliterate it by informing me of what I am ignorant of; instead of talking about you behind your back and complaining about your bad manners, I will address all the problems I have with you with the ultimate desire to see you shine with Christ.

When we have this mindset; when we adopt the universal acceptance of our common state of innocence and sinlessness, we do not see sinners, and we could never attack anyone for anything at all.  Instead of looking for and making enemies, we recognize our Brotherhood in Christ, our Sonship.  I no longer represent something you fear; for you know me now as I truly am – even as you know yourself. 

We are not to walk about with drooping shoulders and heads bowed low.  We are to fear no evil, for when we see ourselves as innocent of all that the ego would lay upon us, we share our innocence with all.  We lift the veil of sin.  We are no longer tempted to believe the illusion of harmfulness and danger at every turn.  Those who appeared so harmful now stand shining in their innocence, Jesus tells us in paragraph three – released from the insanity of sin and fear and happily returned to love!  This is what happens to us when we refuse to see an enemy. We do not go about looking for sin, glued to the media outlets and believing in the lies and violence toward one another.  We see past that to the cry for love, the yearning in which we all have for peace and safety, for equality and mutuality, in other words for Sonship.  We look for glory in each other and we report on that.  And where glory seems lacking, we help and heal even as we are helped and healed when we fail to recognize our own glory.  This is the way we learn of our mutuality, the loving Sonship of God, the sense of Brotherhood we share with Christ.  We see no sinners; we see only the innocent who have gone astray. 

In paragraph four, we are taught to avoid being small-minded and let the little irritations and distractions of the world bring us low.  We walk in a happy world with truth beside us.  We can laugh instead of sigh over the capricious nature of the illusion.  Our faith and trust is not in the world, we do not have to let it get us down, we do not have to make anybody guilty, we do not have to live ashamed of our past mistakes even if they just happened a moment ago!  Each passing moment in time releases us from the previous one.  Let not one thing stir us to attack ourselves or each other by practicing the holy instant, where we learn to live clean and high and above and beyond all that the world would make of us.  We are not here to engage in or be disturbed by the filth of humanity.  We see terrible things when we look upon the world through the eyes of flesh.  The suffering and shame of the low-, small-, and narrow-minded does not exist in the reality of God’s Kingdom, and our destiny and our purpose are far beyond the madhouse of this realm. In the High Mind of Christ, we live in cleanliness and purity encompassing the universe.  Our minds are free of the mad projection, free of the ongoing, repetitive cycles of birth, enslavement, suffering, and death.  We understand that no matter how full our tummies may be, no matter how safe our fortress, or how high up on the socio-economical scale we may be, we can never be happy in a realm where our brothers starve, where blood and sweat are necessitated, where screams of terror drown out the songs of joy.  Our purpose is at variance with all of it, with low-mindedness of any kind.  Our purpose then is at variance with any idea or thought of sin, for sin would keep us in shame and sorrow where there is no sacrifice sweet enough to make an illusion real. 

Do not be led about by the nose by any of it.  Do not get caught up in it.  Do not think that you can fix the world for it is a projection of what would be if there could be another reality outside of God’s Kingdom.  Our glory is not in this realm, nor will it ever be.  Do not let anything in time intrude upon our sight of Sonship, for we are not here to engage in the projection of sin, but to rise above it and bring our brothers with us.  This is what makes us shine and gives our lives in this realm meaning and purpose.  It does not matter how content you are in the world; it does not matter how you have found peace in your daily routine, your family and friends circle, your weekly bible study, your lap cat, and nightly Sudoku puzzle.  All of these things are sweet and comforting and give us a taste of our eternal peace and love and joy.  We should never scorn or disregard our blessedness, no matter what state we find ourselves in.  However, it is our love for one another that saves us; it is our sense of Brotherhood that defines us; it is our freedom from the tales from the dark side that offers Atonement and redemption and returns our Minds to truth which has no opposite or opposition. 

Everything around us is part of us and so we look on everything with love and see the light of Heaven in it.  We cannot see the light of Heaven with our flesh eyes. Flesh eyes were designed to see the filth and decay, the meanness and violence, the projection of the mad mind that fosters hordes of insane notions opposing That Which has no opposition. 

When we see the world through the eyes of oneness, appreciation, kindness and forgiveness, all will sparkle and shine.  No longer will we perceive sin and shame; no longer will we be slaves to the flesh; no longer will the history of wars, disasters, and political demonstrations tempt us to give up our peace.  For our joined minds see past the illusion of separateness to the unity of Heaven.  We are no longer at war with ourselves for to attack you is to attack myself and now I am clean, as you are clean; now I am redeemed as you are redeemed; and we are so happy in our innocence and purity toward one another and the world at large.

This is our salvation and our freedom in Christ, in Brotherhood, in Sonship.  And it must be for all for only in wholeness will we  recognize our Brotherhood, Sonship, and the Love of God, Father to us all.

[1]A Course in Miracles. Chapter 23 The war against yourself. Introduction. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons, visit courtesy of Linda R.

Audio credit:

comment 0


The other day, depressed on the Underground, I tried to cheer myself by thinking over the joys of our human lot. But there wasn’t one of them for which I seemed to care a hang—not Wine, nor Friendship, nor Eating, nor Making Love, nor the Consciousness of Virtue. Was it worth while then going up in a lift into a world that had nothing less trite to offer?
Then I thought of reading—the nice and subtle happiness of reading. This was enough, this joy not dulled by Age, this polite and unpunished vice, this selfish, serene, life-long intoxication.