Part 1 Undoing the Way We See Things Now
LESSON 199 I am not a body. I am free.
- Freedom must be impossible as long as you perceive a body as yourself. The body is a limit. Who would seek for freedom in a body looks for it where it can not be found. The mind can be made free when it no longer sees itself as in a body, firmly tied to it, and sheltered by its presence. If this were the truth, the mind were vulnerable indeed!
- The mind that serves the Holy Spirit is unlimited forever, in all ways, beyond the laws of time and space, unbound by any preconceptions, and with strength and power to do whatever it is asked. Attack thoughts cannot enter such a mind because it has been given to the Source of love, and fear can never enter into a mind that has attached itself to love. It rests in God. And who can be afraid who lives in Innocence, and only loves?
- It is essential for your progress in this course that you accept today’s idea and hold it very dear. Be not concerned that to the ego it is quite insane. The ego holds the body dear because it dwells in it and lives united with the home that it has made. It is a part of the illusion that has sheltered it from being found illusory itself.
- Here does it hide, and here it can be seen as what it is. Declare your innocence and you are free. The body disappears, because you have no need of it except the need the Holy Spirit sees. For this, the body will appear as useful form for what the mind must do. It thus becomes a vehicle which helps forgiveness be extended to the all-inclusive goal that it must reach, according to God’s plan.
- Cherish today’s idea and practice it today and every day. Make it a part of every practice period you take. There is no thought that will not gain thereby in power to help the world, and none which will not gain in added gifts to you as well. We sound the call of freedom round the world with this idea. And would you be exempt from the acceptance of the gifts you gave?
- The Holy Spirit is the home of minds that seek for freedom. In Him they have found what they have sought. The body’s purpose now is unambiguous. And it becomes perfect in the ability to serve an undivided goal. In conflict-free and unequivocal response to mind with but the thought of freedom as its goal, the body serves, and serves its purpose well. Without the power to enslave, it is a worthy servant of the freedom which the mind within the Holy Spirit seeks.
- Be free today. And carry freedom as your gift to those who still believe they are enslaved within a body. Be you free so that the Holy Spirit can make use of your escape from bondage, to set free the many who perceive themselves as bound and helpless and afraid. Let love replace their fears through you. Accept salvation now and give your mind to Him Who calls to you to make this gift to Him. For He would give you perfect freedom, perfect joy, and hope that finds its full accomplishment in God.
- You are God’s Son. In immortality you live forever. Would you not return your mind to this? Then practice well the thought the Holy Spirit gives you for today. Your brothers stand released with you in it; the world is blessed along with you; God’s Son will weep no more. And Heaven offers thanks for the increase of joy your practice brings even to it. And God Himself extends His Love and happiness each time you say: I am not a body. I am free. I hear the Voice That God has given me, and it is only This my mind obeys.
Notes and Personal Application: We are born with the Voice for God inside of us, given to us by God and calling for us to awaken from the dream of separation, from the dream of being a body, from the dream of being split between opposites.
When we think of ourselves as a body, we are prisoner to a form which keeps us enslaved to its never-ending needs for mere survival. The nature of this world is set up for the fight for survival, the struggle to matter, the race for limited resources, the effort to make one’s self and one’s species special and at the top of the food chain. It is violent and full of vengeance. If someone tells you that nature is nice, that it is natural to love one another and to ignore differences, ask them to go live in the woods and commune, unprotected with it for a few weeks. Let them get away from their computers and from behind their desks and experience for themselves what hard work it is to survive in nature!
A loving God did not this world make. A God devoted His Son has bestowed upon His Son all of His own features, privileges, and characteristics. A God devoted to His Creation has taken responsibility for His Creation’s salvation and will bring them home from their captivity in self-deception, in believing a lie, in creating a dark enchantment which blinds them to reality and keeps them trapped in a hallucination of death and despair.
Returning our minds to our true identity sets us free. We are no longer content to drown out the Voice for God with the shrill and chaotic, mindless and thoughtless, constant and repetitive calls of the body. The body serves the mind; the mind serves not the body. We are the Son of God. We are not a body; we are the Mind of God. Today Jesus tells us to remember this and bring this thought into all of our practice. To share this idea with all who are still mistaking themselves for a body. As we realize the truth of this lesson idea, we will increase our joy, we will have no reason for tears and sorrow, we will experience God’s Love and happiness each time we say these words: I am not a body, I am free. I hear the Voice that God has given me. And it is only This Voice my mind obeys.
Do not worry if your ego puts up a fuss and tells you how crazy you are. Do not let concerns over how your body certainly feels like you, defeat your dedication to the truth. Do not allow your love for your body and the great care you take for it convince you that it is your reality and that your life ends when it does. Just simply open your mind to the truth of the matter – time will wreak its havoc upon all things that are not real – this is the purpose of time. Time teaches us what has value and what has none by simply wasting away all that is not real, slowing eroding, changing, and converting one form into another.
Jesus emphasizes to us today that Holy Spirit is home of us who seek our freedom from the hold of the body and the lies of the ego. Today we ask for and listen for the Voice for God. We will take a little while several times a day to clear our inner altar and practice knowing who and what we really are. We will be patient and kind with ourselves. There is no need to get discouraged or overwhelmed with impossible spiritual goals, because we put our spiritual progress into the hands of Him Who created us and is calling us to remember. We will enjoy our spiritual walk. We will have fun with it! We will not grovel or plead with God, for He is not a God who takes pleasure in such piddling behaviors. It does not please Him to see us cry or humiliate ourselves, our bodies are not a sacrifice. God already has Everything; He simply does not want or need our bodies. He did not create them, they will never be holy, or of any value except as a vessel through our lessons in time. Our Heavenly Father only wants us, our hearts and minds, our love and devotion, even as He has given us His Heart, His Mind, His Love and Devotion. Our bodies will disappear in time and we are thankful that this is so because we are not the symbol of the ego; we are not an emblem of death and decay. Day by day, moment by moment, we loose ourselves from identifying with ego and the body and we choose our identity in Christ. Day by day, moment by moment, we will come to see how much more we are, how much more is all Creation. In the name of Jesus the Christ, with whom we are one. Amen.
 A Course in Miracles. Workbook for Students. Lesson 199. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).
Audio credit: http://www.eckiefriar.com