IV. The Escape from Darkness
- The escape from darkness involves two stages: First, the recognition that darkness cannot hide. This step usually entails fear. Second, the recognition that there is nothing you want to hide even if you could. This step brings escape from fear. When you have become willing to hide nothing, you will not only be willing to enter into communion but will also understand peace and joy.
- Holiness can never be really hidden in darkness, but you can deceive yourself about it. This deception makes you fearful because you realize in your heart it is a deception, and you exert enormous efforts to establish its reality. The miracle sets reality where it belongs. Reality belongs only to spirit, and the miracle acknowledges only truth. It thus dispels illusions about yourself and puts you in communion with yourself and God. The miracle joins in the Atonement by placing the mind in the service of the Holy Spirit. This establishes the proper function of the mind and corrects its errors, which are merely lacks of love. Your mind can be possessed by illusions, but spirit is eternally free. If a mind perceives without love, it perceives an empty shell and is unaware of the spirit within. But the Atonement restores spirit to its proper place. The mind that serves spirit is invulnerable.
- Darkness is lack of light as sin is lack of love. It has no unique properties of its own. It is an example of the “scarcity” belief, from which only error can proceed. Truth is always abundant. Those who perceive and acknowledge that they have everything have no needs of any kind. The purpose of the Atonement is to restore everything to you; or rather, to restore it to your awareness. You were given everything when you were created, just as everyone was.
- The emptiness engendered by fear must be replaced by forgiveness. That is what the Bible means by “There is no death,” and why I could demonstrate that death does not exist. I came to fulfill the law by reinterpreting it. The law itself, if properly understood, offers only protection. It is those who have not yet changed their minds who brought the hell-fire concept into it. I assure you that I will witness for anyone who lets me, and to whatever extent he permits it. Your witnessing demonstrates your belief, and thus strengthens it. Those who witness for me are expressing, through their miracles, that they have abandoned the belief in deprivation in favor of the abundance they have learned belongs to them.
In today’s reading, Jesus expounds upon Principle 28 in section one of The Meaning of Miracles: Miracles are associated with fear only because of the belief that darkness can hide. You believe that what your physical eyes cannot see does not exist. This leads to a denial of spiritual sight.
To escape darkness we must first recognize that we cannot hide from God. We were created to be transparent – what we do cannot be kept secret. There is no place to hide. In order to escape darkness we first must realize that it serves no purpose. It does not keep us hidden. It cannot separate us from God. When we accept this, we may feel cornered. We may feel trapped. We may feel as if we have no freewill. But the second step of escaping darkness, is realizing that we do not want to hide from God. We remember His Love, we remember our wholeness, our oneness, our unity. Peace and love and joy is restored to us.
In paragraph two, we learn that we work very hard to convince ourselves that we are not holy and that we are not spirit. No matter how hard we work to identify with our flesh and keep ourselves separate from God, the miracle sets us straight. All illusions about ourselves go away and we begin our walk with our true and holy Self and with God. Jesus tells us that when we find our true Self, we are joined with Him in Atonement – our minds are enlisted in the service of Holy Spirit. Our minds are made right. We are no longer lost, bewildered, and confused about who and what we are. We know what we are about. We know why we are here. Where there was hatred and discord we now have communion and love. Where we were stressed and burdened, we now have peace. We laugh. We sing. We carry on – because our minds are no longer tormented by strange fiction but filled with the fun and freedom of the spirit, our true and holy Self. This is Atonement. Atonement is not bloody; it is not fraught with thorns and nails and humiliation. Atonement is not meant for a select few of God’s Creation. It is meant for all. It is simply restoring Spirit to the proper place in our minds. The mind that serves Spirit, Jesus says, is invulnerable. It cannot suffer, it is invincible, it is as God created.
Darkness and sin are examples of the “scarcity” belief. Darkness dissipates in light; there is no sin in love. Light and love are truth. Light and love are everywhere and forever. There is nothing but the truth – take away light or take away truth and we have untruth. We have a lie. We have an illusion. We have a belief system that is based upon falsehood.
When we recognize truth as Everything and darkness and sin as nothing, we can no longer fear darkness or be tempted by thoughts of sin. We can no longer teach that God favors some people over others or that He will pick and choose which parts of His Creation are worthy and which parts are not. We will know in our minds and hearts that all that He has is ours. We will not fear death. We will not fear sickness and plagues. We will not fear political leaders who would lead us astray. We will seek not for ourselves a kingdom in the world of flesh and blood for His Kingdom has been restored to our awareness. We will remember our Selves as we were created – whole and holy and forever.
Forgiveness is the antidote to all lack. If there is lack of light; if there is lack of love – forgiveness will fill the emptiness where there was lack. I forgive your lack of light. I forgive your lack of love because my lack of light has been forgiven, because my lack of love has been forgiven. When we relate to one another with forgiveness, we overcome death – we demonstrate that death does not exist! As we stand with Christ and extend God’s mercy to those who are empty of love and light, we give protection. The miracle has no curse, damnation, or punishment attached to it. If you believe in God’s rage and wrath, you will demonstrate this in what you do and say, you will condemn and judge rather than forgive. Change your mind about hell-fire and damnation and Jesus will witness this truth to your mind and through your ministry. When we share the good news of God’s love and forgiveness by offering forgiveness to those who are faint of heart and drowning in despair and sorrow, we demonstrate the abundant love and peace and joy that we have always. We have changed our minds about our Father. We love Him, we adore Him, we know that His Will for all of Creation is love and light and joy and peace forever, and in Him there is no darkness!
 A Course in Miracles. Chapter 1: IV Escape from darkness. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992). p. 11-12.
 A Course in Miracles. Chapter 1: I Principles of Miracles. 28. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992). p. 4.
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