VII. Attainment of the Real World 1-9
1. Sit quietly and look upon the world you see and tell yourself: the real world is not like this. It has no buildings and there are no streets where people walk alone and separate. There are no stores where people buy an endless list of things they do not need. It is not lit with artificial light, and night comes not upon it. There is no day that brightens and grows dim. There is no loss. Nothing is there but shines and shines forever.
2. The world you see must be denied, for sight of it is costing you a different kind of vision. You cannot see both worlds, for each of them involves a different kind of seeing and depends on what you cherish. The sight of one is possible because you have denied the other. Both are not true, yet either one will seem as real to you as the amount to which you hold it dear. And yet their power is not the same, because their real attraction to you is unequal.
3. You do not really want the world you see, for it has disappointed you since time began. The homes you built have never sheltered you. The roads you made have led you nowhere, and no city that you built has withstood the crumbling assault of time. Nothing you made but has the mark of death upon it. Hold it not dear, for it is old and tired and ready to return to dust even as you made it. This aching world has not the power to touch the living world at all. You could not give it that, and so although you turn in sadness from it, you cannot find in it the road that leads away from it into another world.
4. Yet the real world has the power to touch you even here, because you love it. And what you call with love will come to you. Love always answers, being unable to deny a call for help, or not to hear the cries of pain that rise to it from every part of this strange world you made but do not want. All that you need to give this world away in glad exchange for what you did not make is willingness to learn the one you made is false.
5. You have been wrong about the world because you have misjudged yourself. From such a twisted reference point, what could you see? All seeing starts with the perceiver, who judges what is true and what is false. And what he judges false he does not see. You who would judge reality cannot see it, for whenever judgment enters reality has slipped away. The out of mind is out of sight, because what is denied is there but is not recognized. Christ is still there, although you know Him not. His Being does not depend upon your recognition. He lives within you in the quiet present and waits for you to leave the past behind and enter into the world He holds out to you in love.
6. No one in this distracted world but has seen some glimpses of the other world about him. Yet while he still lays value on his own, he will deny the vision of the other, maintaining that he loves what he loves not, and following not the road that love points out. Love leads so gladly! As you follow Him, you will rejoice that you have found His company, and learned of Him the joyful journey home. You wait but for yourself. To give this sad world over and exchange your errors for the peace of God is but your will. And Christ will always offer you the Will of God, in recognition that you share it with Him.
7. It is God’s will that nothing touched His Son except Himself, and nothing else comes nigh unto him. He is as safe from pain as God Himself, who watches over him in everything. The world about him shines with love because God placed him in Himself where pain is not, and love surrounds him without end or flaw. Disturbance of his peace can never be. In perfect sanity he looks on love, for it is all about him and within him. He must deny the world of pain the instant he perceives the arms of love around him. And from this point of safety he looks quietly about him and recognizes that the world is one with him.
8. The peace of God passeth your understanding only in the past. Yet here it is, and you can understand it now. God loves His Son forever, and His Son returns his Father’s Love forever. The real world is the way that leads you to remembrance of the one thing that is wholly true and wholly yours. For all else you have lent yourself in time, and it will fade. But this one thing is always yours, being the gift of God unto His Son. Your one reality was given you, and by it God created you as one with Him.
9. You will first dream of peace, and then awaken to it. Your first exchange of what you made for what you want is the exchange of nightmares for the happy dreams of love. In these lie your true perceptions, for the Holy Spirit corrects the world of dreams, where all perception is. Knowledge needs no correction. Yet the dreams of love lead onto knowledge. In them you see nothing fearful, and because of this they are the welcome that you offer knowledge. Love waits on welcome, not on time, and the real world is but your welcome of what always was. Therefore the call of joy is in it, and your glad response is your awakening to what you have not lost.
Today in our devotional practice, let us sit quietly and seek the real world in our mind. What is the real world? A place that is bright, where there is no death or loss of any kind, and where everything shimmers and glows throughout eternity. A place where we have no needs of any kind. We find it hard to even imagine this kind of place in the world we see. In this world we have all sorts of needs and to meet those needs there are price tags attached to them. There is darkness here in this world and frightening things happen and we have natures that are drawn to violence and small spites and vengeance.
Jesus tells us that we can have the real world or the world we made – neither one of them is true because they are based upon perception but they will seem as real to us as what we hold dear. One is more powerful than the other because love and kindness, abundance and goodwill will always attract us more than that which opposes these qualities.
The world we see makes us ill, it makes us weary, it lets us down, it never lives up to its promise. We are simply not to hold it dear and the path that leads away from it into another world cannot be found in this one. But the real world does have the power to attract us here in this one because we love it. And we will lean toward it and move toward it because love is more powerful than hate, it is more powerful than fear, it is more powerful than pain of every kind. Jesus tells us in paragraph four that all we need to have the real world is to learn that the one we made is not true.
The presence of Christ in our minds does not need to be recognized – He is always there in the present waiting for the past to be left behind and enter into the world that He offers us in love. All of us have caught glimpses of the real world; but we cannot escape the one we made on our own. Christ leads us out of this one on a joyful journey – the moment we remember who and what we are in Christ. This world of sorrow, sadness, sacrifice and savagery is not worthy of the Christ and as we recognize our Sonship, we will be only too happy to exchange this world for the one that is given us by God.
It is not God’s Will that we live in a world of uncertainty, pain, and sorrow. Inside of each one of us is God’s Son – safe and secure in the everlasting kingdom within us. When we know who we are and recognize the love of God all around us, the world of pain melts away – it cannot touch us, for the world becomes one with us.
When we know ourselves as God’s Son, we understand God’s peace. It is no longer something we do not understand because we have it and to have it is to know it and to give it. When we live from the Kingdom of God, when we deny our human nature and accept our divine nature, when we no longer think of ourselves as separate from God but know ourselves as one with Him, all the things that happened in time fades away. Our outer world begins to match our inner world; we draw all that is good, that blesses, that heals, that loves to us for that is what we are and there is no darkness in light.
We will first dream of peace and then peace becomes us as we become peace. On our quest for the real world – the first thing we do is exchange our nightmares for happy dreams of love and joy and peace. It is only in love and joy and peace that we find truth beyond our perceptions. When we desire to see nothing fearful, nothing mean or violent or vengeful, we draw to ourselves love for love only enters where it is welcome. And fear, and hatred, meanness and spite have no welcome mat out for love of any kind. For when we love we are unable to do anything but help and heal one another. Our world is healed, and our minds are awakened into wholeness, wellness, and the Kingdom of God.
This is the aim of our devotional practice, this is the aim of all spiritual teaching, it is our salvation and our redemption. We turn from the world we made, and we hold dear only the world we have been given and never really lost. And we do it now – each day – we take a portion of our day and hold the laws of love in our mind, in our thoughts, in our holy imaginations. We look past this realm, and we allow ourselves the time, the quiet, the calm with no interference from the outside world to contemplate and welcome the things of God. This is how we do it. There is nothing scary or tedious or sacrificial about this practice. It is simply a practice of those who are awakening from a deep sleep of madness to all that is right and true and good. Today in your devotional practice allow the words of this lesson to sink deep into your consciousness, meditate upon the real world where love is welcome, and all that opposes love is denied a place. Dreaming of love leads to knowing love and knowing love is knowing God.
 A Course in Miracles. Chapter 13 The guiltless world. VII Attainment of the real world 1-9. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).
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