III. The Correction of Error
- The alertness of the ego to the errors of other egos is not the kind of vigilance the Holy Spirit would have you maintain. Egos are critical in terms of the kind of sense they stand for. They understand this kind of sense because it is sensible to them. To the Holy Spirit it makes no sense at all.
- To the ego it is kind and right and good to point out errors and correct them. This makes perfect sense to the ego, which is unaware of what errors are and what correction is. Errors are of the ego, and correction of errors lies in the relinquishment of the ego. When you correct a brother, you’re telling him that he is wrong. He may be making no sense at the time, and it is certain that, if he is speaking from the ego, he will not be making sense. But your task is still to tell him he is right. You do not tell him this verbally if he is speaking foolishly. He needs correction at another level because his error is at another level. He is still right because he is a Son of God. His ego is always wrong, no matter what it says or does.
- If you point out the errors of your brother’s ego you must be seeing through yours, because the Holy Spirit does not perceive his errors. This must be true since there is no communication between the ego and the Holy Spirit. The ego makes no sense, and the Holy Spirit does not attempt to understand anything that arises from it. Since He does not understand it, He does not judge it, knowing that nothing the ego makes means anything.
- When you react at all to errors, you are not listening to the Holy Spirit. He has merely disregarded them, and if you attend to them you are not hearing Him. If you do not hear Him, you are listening to your ego and making as little sense as a brother whose errors you perceive. This cannot be correction. Yet it is more than merely a lack of correction for him. It is the giving up of correction in yourself.
- When a brother behaves insanely, you can heal him only by perceiving the sanity in him. If you perceive his errors and accept them, you are accepting yours. If you want to give yours over to the Holy Spirit, you must do this with his. Unless this becomes the one way in which you handle all errors, you cannot understand how all errors are undone. How is this different from telling you that what you teach you learn? Your brother is as right as you are, and if you think he is wrong you are condemning yourself.
- You cannot correct yourself. Is it possible, then, for you to correct another? Yet you can see him truly because it is possible for you to see yourself truly. It is not up to you to change your brother, but merely to accept him as he is. His errors do not come from the truth that is in him, and only this truth is yours. His errors cannot change this and can have no effect at all on the truth in you. To perceive errors in anyone, and to react to them as if they were real, is to make them real to you. You will not escape paying the price for this, not because you were being punished for it, but because you are following the wrong guide and will therefore lose your way.
- Your brother’s errors are not of him, anymore than yours are of you. Accept his errors as real, and you have attacked yourself. If you would find your way and keep it, see only truth beside you for you walk together. The Holy Spirit in you forgives all things in you and in your brother. His errors are forgiven with yours. Atonement is no more separate than love. Atonement cannot be separate because it comes from love. Any attempt you make to correct a brother means that you believe correction by you is possible, and this can only be the arrogance of the ego. Correction is of God, who does not know of arrogance.
- The Holy Spirit forgives everything because God created everything. Do not undertake His function, or you will forget yours. Accept only the function of healing in time because that is what time is for. God gave you the function to create in eternity. You do not need to learn that, but you do need to learn to want it. For that all learning was made. This is the Holy Spirit’s use of an ability that you do not need, but that you made. Give it to him! You do not understand how to use it. He will teach you how to see yourself without condemnation, by learning how to look on everything without it. Condemnation will then not be real to you, and all your errors will be forgiven.
Jesus tells us in today’s text reading that this world is not the place we think it is. The more we learn about it the more real we make it to ourselves. The more real we make it to ourselves, the more we are inclined to judge it, to judge our brothers, to think we know best, to find ways to belittle others in order for us to think better of ourselves. This is the way the ego entraps us in the little, small-minded, low-minded realm of flesh. This is not the path to salvation which is freedom from the ego and return to God and His Kingdom.
Our function in this world is to heal. To heal means to remember what we really are and what we were created to be as God’s Son. We were created to be extensions of God, to extend His Kingdom, to create more love, peace, and joy and expand the attributes of God, the Will of God, throughout eternity. Because this is our natural, God-given function, it fills us with joy, purpose, and meaning. To not do God’s Will is to deny our function.
We deny our function as God’s Will when we condemn our brothers. When we think it is our job to correct them, to tell them where they went wrong, to point out their fatal flaws, we are offering the ego’s kind of “help.” It is the function of Holy Spirit to correct us. We are called to recognize the Son of God in our brothers regardless of what the ego has wrought in their lives. We are not to draw attention to what is wrong about them, but to focus on their identity as God’s Son.
Jesus promises us that when we do this, we are defeating the ego simply by not giving it any credibility. When we stop judging our brothers, we make room in our minds and hearts to see them as we see ourselves – as worthy Sons of God, as God’s treasures, as God’s Will.
Accepting the Atonement means that we recognize our function in the world, in time, as one of healing, of returning, learning the value of what we threw away when we separated our awareness from God and His Kingdom. We are not here to judge the world or get involved in it – we are here to recognize that this is not God’s Kingdom, and we want to go home – together with the complete Sonship of God.
We are not here to get caught up in any of the blather that substitutes for the real communication of Holy Spirit. We are not here to go around telling other people how awesome our religion is compared to theirs. We are here to learn to want to be what we really are as God’s Son. We are here to grow up to become Him Who has called us because He created us.
In the last paragraph of today’s reading, Jesus urges us to recognize that we do not know how to correct other people nor ourselves. We are corrected by Holy Spirit and we are to give all of our learning over to His teaching. He will teach us everything we need to know when we need to know it. He will teach us how to see ourselves and each other with no condemnation. He will teach us that when we no longer believe in sin, in condemnation, in punishment, and dread – it will be washed away from our consciousness and we will have peace.
Having peace is a condition of God’s Kingdom. We cannot have peace without first removing all that opposes peace. Today ask Holy Spirit to be your Teacher. Linger with this text and ask Holy Spirit to reveal its meaning to you in a way that you can apply to your own circumstances and practice in your daily life.
 A Course in Miracles. Chapter 9 The acceptance of the atonement. III The correction of error. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).
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