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A COURSE IN MIRACLES Chapter 11 God or the Ego

II. The Invitation to Healing

  1. If sickness is separation, the decision to heal and to be healed is the first step toward recognizing what you truly want.  Every attack is a step away from this, and every healing thought brings it closer.  The Son of God has both Father and Son because he is both Father and Son.  To unite having and being is to unite your will with His, for He wills you Himself.  And you will yourself to Him because, in your perfect understanding of Him, you know there is, but one Will.  Yet when you attack any part of God and His Kingdom your understanding is not perfect, and what you really want is therefore lost to you. 
  2. Healing thus becomes a lesson in understanding, and the more you practice it the better teacher and learner you become.  If you have denied truth, what better witnesses to its reality could you have than those who have been healed by it?  But be sure to count yourself among them, for in your willingness to join them is your healing accomplished.  Every miracle that you accomplish speaks to you of the Fatherhood of God.  Every healing thought that you accept, either from your brother or in your own mind, teaches you that you are God’s Son.  In every hurtful thought you hold, wherever you perceive it, lies the denial of God’s Fatherhood and of your Sonship.
  3. And denial is as total as love.  You cannot deny part of yourself, because the rest will seem to be separate and therefore without meaning.  And being without meaning to you, you will not understand it.  To deny meaning is to fail to understand.  You can heal only yourself, for only God’s Son needs healing.  You need it because you do not understand yourself, and therefore know not what you do.  Having forgotten your will, you do not know what you really want.
  4. Healing is a sign that you want to make whole.  And this willingness opens your ears to the Voice of the Holy Spirit, Whose message is wholeness.  He will enable you to go far beyond the healing you would undertake, for beside your small willingness to make whole He will lay His Own complete Will and make yours whole.  What can the Son of God not accomplish with the Fatherhood of God in Him?  And yet the invitation must come from you, for you have surely learned that whom you invite as your guest will abide with you.
  5. The Holy Spirit cannot speak to an unwelcoming host because He will not be heard.  The Eternal Guest remains, but His Voice grows faint in alien company.  He needs your protection, only because your care is a sign that you want Him.  Think like Him ever so slightly, and the little spark becomes a blazing light that fills your mind so that He becomes your only Guest.  Whenever you ask the ego to enter, you lesson His welcome.  He will remain, but you have allied yourself against Him.  Whatever journey you choose to take, He will go with you, waiting.  You can safely trust His patience, for He cannot leave a part of God.  Yet you need far more than patience.
  6. You will never rest until you know your function and fulfill it, for only in this can your will and your Father’s be wholly joined.  To have Him is to be like Him, and He has given Himself to you.  You who have God must be as God, for His function became yours with His gift.  Invite this knowledge back into your mind and let nothing that obscures it enter.  The Guest Whom God sent you will teach you how to do this, if you but recognize the little spark and are willing to let it grow.  Your willingness need not be perfect, because His is.  If you will merely offer Him a little place, He will lighten it so much that you will gladly let it be increased.  And by this increase, you will begin to remember creation.
  7. Would you be hostage to the ego or host to God? You will accept only whom you invite.  You are free to determine who shall be your guest, and how long he shall remain with you. Yet this is not real freedom, for it still depends on how you see it. The Holy Spirit is there, although He cannot help you without your invitation.  And the ego is nothing, whether you invite it in or not.  Real freedom depends on welcoming reality, and of your guests only the Holy Spirit is real.  Know, then, Who abides with you merely by recognizing what is there already, and do not be satisfied with imaginary comforters, for the Comforter of God is in you.[1] 

When we come to the place in our journey where we no longer have any desire to harm others in any way, when we realize that the source of our angst, our sorrow, our sickness comes from our acceptance of the dog-eat-dog nature of the ego’s realm – we have made the first step in recognizing that God’s Will is our will.  Those attack thoughts that the ego arouses in the dark part of our minds, the lower mind, the part that cannot stand the “other,” because they are dirty, they pick their nose, they scratch their crotches, they don’t love Jesus – must be recognized for what they are.  They are attacks; they are not inspired of God and they are a denial of God and the Sonship. 

Forgiving thoughts, overlooking thoughts, loving thoughts take us beyond our human perception.  This kind of thinking helps us to recognize what we truly want.  We must welcome this kind of thinking into our minds for the practice of the mind of Christ, while the only real choice we have, has become unnatural in the world of ego.  Ego would make this practice one of weakness, sport, and ridicule.  Ego sneers at goodness because goodness is free of ego, goodness offers ego nothing on which to grasp, to sustain itself.  Ego would have us getting caught up in attack thoughts, mockery thoughts, condemning thoughts sinking our minds deeper into depression, sickness, and the black empty pit of despair rather than recognize our Sonship with God and our brotherhood in Christ. 

Instead of seeing each other through the hard, cruel eyes of condemnation, humiliation and scorn, we begin to see past the human wreckage and recognize the spark of God within each one of us.  We see past the bad manners, the gross behaviors, the uncouth words and deeds and we see God.  We will know what we really want when we practice looking upon others only with the mutuality and goodwill of the Brotherhood of Christ.    

Practicing the mutuality we share as Sons of God, heals us.  It deepens our understanding of the conditions of God’s Kingdom.  The more we practice seeing the spark of God in others, the better we get at it.  Our healing is a witness to those who have denied the truth about God, the ones who have sickened themselves on false concepts of God.  We are to count ourselves among the healed and the healers – for our will to join them is our healing.  I take this to mean get over any false modesty that would dim your awareness and discount your place in God’s Kingdom.  Be careful of idolizing the “masters.”  There are no masters in God’s Kingdom – we are all called to bring our spark and join it with others.  We are not to fall into the trap that we are just not spiritually advanced enough to teach God’s truth – we are to start where we are and not be afraid of our imperfect, awkward, limited understanding but trust in ourselves and in God to teach us as we teach others to be unafraid of their process. 

There is no competition in God’s Kingdom.  There are no pets, no elect, no argument about who gets to sit on the throne next to God’s.  These are egotistical ideas that do not heal but sicken us and turn us against each other.  We are not here to putdown others in order to make ourselves look better.  During the past year when we were practicing social distancing, I had the great joy of being part of a few online ACIM groups from around the world.  However, I was taken aback to find that the same patterns of behavior that come up in the more secular mindsets are also expressed in sincere students and devoted teachers of the Course.  When we treat others as if they are less than us because we have had our nose in the Course for much longer than them, because we have a teaching degree, because we follow a particular ACIM “Master,” expressing shock and dismay that others have not been taught of this popular teacher or that one – we are denying God.  We are denying the Sonship.  We are not healing; we are hurting ourselves and others.  We think that there is something valuable in separation. We fail to see what the spark in those who do not impress us has to teach us.    

Jesus tells us in paragraph three that denial is as total as love. We cannot deny part of the Sonship without the Sonship losing its meaning to us.  Once the Sonship loses its meaning to us, there will be no understanding of it.  We are back to square one again, repeating the same old patterns of exclusiveness, perceiving through the eyes of flesh, getting caught up in the causes of the world that would get us to point fingers of blame and shame.  We will sail along thinking we are spiritually advancing, only to find that our light is growing dimmer as our understanding weakens.  Instead of healing others, we need healing, because we have forgotten what we really are and what we really want.    

Healing signifies that we want to be whole and to make whole.  We no longer want to lord it over our brothers, we want to be one with them.  We are no longer willing to curse God’s Creation, accepting the ego’s bleak forecasts, accusations, and perversions as truth – we want only Creation as God created it.  When we get to this point, we can hear the Voice for God – the still, quiet, calm Voice of Holy Spirit will teach us wholeness.  We may be able to train our minds to reject attack thoughts; we may be able to train our minds to stay fixed upon the more positive things in the world; we may even be able to maintain peace of mind through meditation, through practicing good mental health habits; and avoiding those who would pull us down.  But with Holy Spirit as our Guide we go far beyond the earthly rewards of a calm mind – we get the complete Will of God, we are made whole, we are given the Sonship of God and the love, the joy, the peace that lasts beyond this plane and encompasses everything. 

Ask for Holy Spirit, dear brothers.  Invite the Holy Guest to abide with you, for Holy Spirit does not boorishly butt in where He is not wanted.  Holy Spirit is not clamorous, loud, or attention-seeking.  It is very easy to overlook the attributes of Holy Spirit, for Holy Spirit has nothing that sustains the ego or satisfies its cravings.  And yet the quiet attributes of love, joy, and peace, of meaning, purpose, and wholeness are what we really want – all we must do is ask!

Caring for Holy Spirit is a sign of our welcome.  Just as we provide all the comforts of home to our guests when they come to visit, preparing delicious meals and drinks, planning fun activities, and providing clean sheets and towels – so must we care for Holy Spirit in our lives.  Thinking with Holy Spirit, our mind fills with His Light, He becomes not our Holy Guest, but He becomes us as we become Him!  The quiet Voice for God requires peace to be heard.  We cannot hear Holy Spirit in the unbridled clamor of the ego.  When ego enters our mind, we have allied against our Holy Guest – and while He never leaves us or forsakes us, we need far more than merely His patience to heal and be healed. 

For we will simply never find peace until we realize our function – to heal and to be healed – this is the path that joins us wholly with God.  To have God in us is to be like God – He has given Himself to us.  We must be as God for His function became our function when He gave us His Voice, His Spirit, His Son.  Let nothing keep you from acknowledging this truth!  Let nothing that would deride, denigrate, or destroy this knowledge enter your thoughts for as we recognize the spark of God within us we will want to let it grow, and Holy Spirit will teach us how to do this when we ask.  It may feel awkward at first to think of ourselves as more than a fruitcake taken out of the oven too soon, a miserable sinner saved by grace, but brothers, God has given us Himself.  Do not let the ego tell you that you are less than what God created you to be.  Offer your willingness to let this knowledge, this truth grow in you and Holy Spirit will reveal the memory of creation to you. 

Hostage to the ego or host to God?  We will accept whom we invite – it seems like freedom – this choice, but it is only freedom because in this realm the ego seems like a real choice.  In the reality of God, the ego is nothing whether we invite it in or not – for the ego is that which opposes truth.  Being the opposite of truth, ego is merely a bluff, a scam, a ruse, a lie. 

Welcoming Holy Spirit, we find Holy Spirit is already there, waiting for our embrace, waiting for us to give up our fictional, perceptual, imaginary comforters.  Real freedom comes from the real Comforter, Which being of God has never left us and never will. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 11 God or the ego. II The invitation to healing. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992). pp. 197-198.

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A COURSE IN MIRACLES Chapter 11 God or the Ego

I.  The Gifts of Fatherhood 6-11

6. God has given you a place in His Mind that is yours forever.  Yet you can keep it only by giving it, as it was given you.  Could you be alone there, when it was given you because God did not will to be alone?   God’s Mind cannot be lessened.  It can only be increased, for everything He creates has the function of creating.  Love does not limit, and what it creates is not limited.  To give without limit is God’s Will for you, because only this can bring you the joy that is His and that He wills to share with you.  Your love is as boundless as His because it is His.

7. Could any part of God be without His Love, and could any part of His Love be contained?  God is your heritage, because His one gift is Himself.  How can you give except like Him if you would know His gift to you?  Give, then, without limit and without end, to learn how much He has given you.  Your ability to accept Him depends on your willingness to give as He gives.  Your fatherhood and your Father are one.  God wills to create, and your will is His.  It follows, then, that you will to create since your will follows from His.  And being an extension of His Will, yours must be the same. 

8. Yet what you will you do not know.  This is not strange when you realize that to deny is to “not know.”  God’s Will is that you are His Son.  By denying this you deny your own will, and therefore do not know what it is.  You must ask what God’s Will is in everything because it is yours.  You do not know what it is, but the Holy Spirit remembers it for you.  Ask Him, therefore, what God’s Will is for you, and He will tell you yours.  It cannot be too often repeated that you do not know it.  Whenever what the Holy Spirit tells you appears to be coercive, it is only because you have not recognized your will.

9. The projection of the ego makes it appear as if God’s Will is outside yourself, and therefore not yours.  In this interpretation it seems possible for God’s Will and yours to conflict.  God, then, may seem to demand of you what you do not want to give, and thus deprive you of what you want.  Would God, Who wants only your will, be capable of this?  Your will is His life, which He has given to you.  Even in time you cannot live apart from Him.  Sleep is not death.  What He created can sleep but cannot die.  Immortality is His Will for His Son, and His Son’s will for himself.  God’s Son cannot will death for himself because his Father is Life, and His Son is like Him.  Creation is your will because it is His.

10. You cannot be happy unless you do what you will truly, and you cannot change this because it is immutable.  It is immutable by God’s Will and yours, for otherwise His Will would not be extended.  You are afraid to know God’s Will, because you believe it is not yours.  This belief is your whole sickness and your whole fear.  Every symptom of sickness and fear arises here because this is the belief that makes you want not to know.  Believing this you hide in darkness, denying that the light is in you.

11. You are asked to trust the Holy Spirit only because He speaks for you.  He is the Voice for God, but never forget that God did not will to be alone.  He shares His Will with you; He does not thrust it upon you.  Always remember that what He gives He keeps, so that nothing He gives can contradict Him.  You who share His Life must share it to know it, for sharing is knowing.  Blessed are you who learn that to hear the Will of your Father is to know your own.  For it is your will to be like Him, Whose Will it is that it be so.  God’s Will is that His Son be one, and united with Him in His Oneness.  That is why healing is the beginning of the recognition that your will is His. [1]

Our place in God’s Kingdom is ours forever and the only way we know our place is by giving others their place, just as it was given to us.  We cannot keep others out of the Kingdom of God simply because we think we are better and more deserving than they are any more than we can keep ourselves out of the Kingdom by denying God His Creation.  Love has no limits; it has no boundaries; it has no stipulations except to create more of Itself.  To love without limit is both our joy and the joy of the Lord.  In God, our love is as eternal as God’s.  We extend it to all and for all and forever.  This may be hard for us to imagine at this point in our process.  We can all probably think of several people who seem incapable of accepting or deserving of our love.  But we are not speaking of our human love which has all kinds of stipulations and needs all kinds of boundaries in order to protect us.  We are speaking of the invulnerable love of God.  We do not have to understand it, only to ask for it and to accept it – for this is our wills being one with God. 

We do not have to be afraid of His Love. Humans and the human experience cannot abide in God’s love – He does not ask our human to love with God, for this is impossible.  Jesus requires that our Spirits love with God.  This means that there are some people we love in the Spirit but have no obligation to them in the flesh.  We can love our exes for example without any obligation to continue to have sex with them, to waste our time with their wishy-washy, or to let them back in our homes.  We can bear others the goodwill of God without allowing them to drain our finances, thwart our plans, or stand in the way of our happiness.  When we love others in the Spirit, neither do we obligate them to us or demand their money, time, or effort.  We practice the freedom that God’s Love allows us.  We do not interfere in the process of others or judge them if they have not learned the same lessons we have yet, nor do we allow them to scold or rebuke us for the lessons we have not mastered. 

None of us can be without God’s Love.  None of us have a right to try to hoard it for ourselves and our own little tribe or group.  God is our heritage!  Not our family name, our motherland, our traditions, or the culture in which we were raised.  We give this to all without judgment.  The only thing we judge is the condition of the world without God – it is a condition that affects us all and cannot be blamed on any one group of people.  None of us are more or less privileged than others.  This is a ruse of the ego which entraps us in hating and pointing fingers of blame and shame on each other instead of extending love, joy, and peace, which is God’s Will for us and our will with God.  Extending the love, joy, and peace of God’s Kingdom is the only way to happiness.

In paragraph eight, Jesus tells us that we do not seem to know what will make us happy.  We say I want to be happy, but we can’t say what exactly it takes to make us so.  We will pray for God’s Will in our life as if it is something we have to get from the perceptual world.  It can become quite silly praying for God’s Will – thinking that God cares which grocery store we buy our groceries from, or which garage we go to repair our cars.  We may think that only giving Christian enterprises our business is God’s Will.  We may think that going to other countries to spread the word of God is God’s Will and completely overlook the opportunities all around us to extend love, peace, and joy. 

Ask Holy Spirit for the Will of God, and He will tell you because otherwise the ego thought system will snatch it from your memory and you will be tempted to think that it is out there in the world somewhere waiting for you to find it.  There is nothing at all coercive about the Will of God.  It is always what brings us joy, happiness, and peace. 

Our will and God’s Will must be one for God has given us our will.  Even in our stint in time we do not live apart from Him for sleep is not death.  All around us people seem to be dying but it is only their human forms that can deform, destruct, and decay.  We can dream of death but that does not make it real.  We could never be happy in dreams of death unless we are looking past the dreams of death, nor should we strive to be happy with harmfulness of any kind.  We can only be happy in the Kingdom which is everlasting.  Where Creation cannot be destroyed; where Creation never dies, where opposites and opposition have no place. 

Extending help and harmlessness in this realm is the equivalent of creating love and peace and joy in God’s Kingdom.  If we are afraid of God’s Will, we are afraid of God.  We still think that He is out to get us and to put us through the wringer to prove our love for Him.  We still believe in the kind of God that would make us suffer humiliations and torture and go places and do things that we dread.  This kind of thinking makes us sick.  It makes us afraid of God and unable to love Him perfectly for we cannot trust such an image.  Our idolatry is more than just an image of a particular saint or the Mother Mary or the gods of one country or another, our idolatry is the false image we have of God our Father in our minds.  When we think of God as an abuser, as a bully, as a bloodthirsty warmonger, who demands sacrifices and punishes rather than forgives and corrects our mistakes, no matter how many times we go to church, no matter how much time we spend in prayer, no matter how much we read our holy texts – we deny the reality of God and we deny the reality of the light and love that is in all of us, in all of His Creation. 

Holy Spirit is both the Voice for God and the Voice for you and for me.  Learn to listen to the still, quiet, knowing Voice which will never withhold God’s Will from us nor lead us to do things that are ridiculous and shameful in the name of God.  Do not mistake the chatter and clamor of the ego for the Voice for God in your life.  Ego will tell us all kinds of flattering things about ourselves, ego will tell us how special we are to God.  We are spiritual masters, ego will whisper in our ear, gifted with spiritual insights that others simply do not understand.  Ego will tell us to leave our homes and families and other responsibilities and go to work for God in other places – being a hero to some and a complete jerk to others!  Ego will tell us that it is okay for us to fly away with Jesus and let everybody behind to suffer the shame and tortures of lost humanity.  Ego will flop us about, making us bored, dissatisfied, and discouraged with the calm, peaceful, certainty that is of God.  Ego, disguising itself as the Voice for God will give us impossible assignments, plague our mind with worry and fret, afraid we are not doing enough for God’s Kingdom.  Ego will then get its jollies from chastising us for not meeting its demands.  This is all a distraction from the Will of God which is accepting that we are one with God because we are His Son.  

Accepting that our will is God’s Will is the beginning of our healing for we are no longer running and hiding from God, but we are going toward Him, because we have changed our mind about Who and What He really is and what He expects from His Son. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 11 God or the ego. I The gifts of fatherhood 6-11. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

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A COURSE IN MIRACLES Chapter 11 God or The Ego

1.  The Gifts of Fatherhood 1-5

  1. You have learned your need of healing.  Would you bring anything else to the Sonship, recognizing your need of healing for yourself?  For in this lies the beginning of the return to knowledge; the foundation on which God will help build again the thought system you share with Him.  Not one stone you place upon it but will be blessed by Him, for you will be restoring the holy dwelling place of His Son, where He Wills His Son to be and where he is.  In whatever part of the mind of God’s Son you restore this reality, you restore it to yourself.  You dwell in the Mind of God with your brother, for God Himself did not will to be alone.
  2. To be alone is to be separated from infinity, but how can this be if infinity has no end?  No one can be beyond the limitless because what has no limits must be everywhere.  There are no beginnings and no endings in God, Whose universe is Himself.  Can you exclude yourself from the universe, or from God Who is the universe?  I and my Father are one with you, for you are part of us.  Do you really believe that part of God can be missing or lost to Him?
  3. If you were not part of God, His Will would not be unified.  Is this conceivable?  Can part of his Mind contain nothing?  If your place in His Mind cannot be filled by anyone except you, and your filling it was your creation, without you there would be an empty place in God’s Mind.  Extension cannot be blocked, and it has no voids.  It continues forever, however much it is denied.  Your denial of its reality may arrest it in time, but not in eternity.  That is why your creations have not ceased to be extended, and why so much is waiting for your return.
  4. Waiting is possible only in time, but time has no meaning.  You who made delay can leave time behind simply by recognizing that neither beginnings nor endings were created by the Eternal, Who placed no limits on His creation or upon those who create like Him.  You do not know this simply because you have tried to limit what He created, and so you believe that all creation is limited.  How, then, could you know your creations, having denied infinity?
  5. The laws of the universe do not permit contradiction.  What holds for God holds for you.  If you believe you are absent from God, you will believe that He is absent from you.  Infinity is meaningless without you, and you are meaningless without God.  There is no end to God and His Son, for we are the universe.  God is not incomplete, and He is not childless.  Because He did not will to be alone, He created a Son like Himself.  Do not deny Him His Son, for your unwillingness to accept His Fatherhood has denied you yours.  See His creations as His Son, for yours were created in honor of Him.  The universe of love does not stop because you do not see it, nor have your closed eyes lost the ability to see.  Look upon the glory of His creation, and you will learn what God has kept for you.[1]

Jesus starts today’s text reading with the assertion that we have learned our need of healing.  This is what we bring to the Sonship.  We cannot return to the Sonship holding on to our sickness and calling it our “individuality,” our “human rights,” our particular take on how much our identification with the color of our skin, the gender of our bodies, our sexual preferences, or our professions in the world matters.  We cannot have what God has for us as long as we are yammering that we have a right to our addictions, that we have a right to our specialness, that we have a right to author ourselves and to make up our own versions of God. The only thing that matters in our return to God is that we know our need for healing. 

We are prodigals and we seem far from Home.  We cannot go home dragging this world with us and asking God to intervene in our special causes.  We let all of that behind.  We are restored when we are willing to say, “Please heal me, Father and take away all that would sicken me and deprive me of You.” 

When we see our brother struggling with the constant barrage of issues that seem to arise in this bad dream, we do not judge and condemn him, but rather the ego thought system which has sickened him.  Practicing this and teaching this is our way to restore our awareness of what we are in God. 

Nothing that belongs to God can be apart from Him.  We are not cast out of His Kingdom; we are simply asleep and dreaming the dream of what could be so if it were possible to make up our own version of reality. We can sail along in our fantasies for only so long until they turn against us, viciously and without respite.  For some of us, just a little taste of the savageness of the ego can awaken us to our need for healing; for others, the savagery becomes their god for whom they are willing to enslave themselves.  No matter where we find ourselves on that spectrum, sickness is sickness, and we are all in need of healing.  There is no point in comparing ourselves to others and judging who can still be saved and who is past redemption – being past the point of redemption is impossible with the creations of God, for no one can be missing or be lost to Him.

You have a place in God’s Mind which can only be filled by you, even as I have a place in God’s Mind which can only be filled by me.  We were created to fill our spots and without us, those spots would be empty.  This is an impossibility for creation can never be messed with – it goes on forever extending itself, whether we are aware of it or not. 

We can leave time behind by recognizing and accepting that beginnings and endings were not created by the Eternal who placed no boundaries on Creation or those who create like Him.  We are not aware of this in our human state.  In our human condition, we are not without boundaries.  We must follow the rules, we must not overtax ourselves, we can only go so far and extend ourselves so little before we need replenishment and respite.  Our human forms do not hold up in time but rather age and wither and disintegrate.  We make the mistake of believing that all of creation is limited because in our physical world we are limited.  We do not know our own creations because trapped in the limited perceptions of humanity, we are blind to the love, the peace, the joy we have extended and that goes on extending throughout eternity. 

What holds for God, holds for us, His Creation.  There are no contradictions.  When we believe we are absent from God, we believe that He is absent from us.  This cannot be for Jesus tells us that eternity is meaningless without each one of us and we are meaningless without God – we are part of the universe, we are the universe, we are part of the Sonship, we are the Sonship. 

Denying God as Father does not stop the universe of love anymore than refusing to see all of Creation as His Son gives us the right to judge and condemn our brothers.  When we look with the Vision of Christ upon the world, we see the glory of God’s Creation, we glimpse what God has kept for us beyond the world of perception.  We see that with or without our awareness all that we have in God was never lost nor has it gone missing.  It is not being held for us in a closed and locked vault awaiting our return, but it is being used by God, increasing and extending outward and gaining value.  This is our inheritance in Him.  Denying ourselves this does not make it go away. 

In your personal devotions today, recognize your need of healing.  Ask Holy Spirit to make you aware of any shreds of ego which are tempting your mind to castigate you and your brothers rather than to see yourself and others as sickened by this world and in need of return to God.  Ask Holy Spirit to illuminate our text reading to you so that you will recognize the gifts of Fatherhood that await us when we return our hearts and minds to Him.  Bring Him your humanity and lay it upon the altar of your mind.  Accept your divinity that God has been keeping for you, awaiting your return. Be courageous in your walk to God and in God.  Thrust upon Him all the sickness, perversions, meanness, and ignorance that the ego would make you out to be and let Him show you what you really are in His Mind and in His Kingdom. 

This is what we bring to God.  It is the foundation of our restoration and redemption.  We bring Him our need of healing.  We can donate all manner of goods to the church, to the poor, to our favorite charities and causes, but all God wants from us is our humble recognition that we are sick in our hearts, our minds, our lives without Him. 

“Heal us, Dear Father, for without You we are nothing,” is not only the prayer of our awakening, but the foundation stone of our return to Him. 

“Dear Father, Open our eyes to what You have kept for us,” is the prayer of acceptance of what we are in His Kingdom.

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 11 God or the ego. I The gifts of fatherhood. 1-5. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

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A COURSE IN MIRACLES Chapter 11 God or the Ego


  1. Either God or the ego is insane. If you will examine the evidence on both sides fairly, you will realize this must be true. Neither God nor the ego proposes a partial thought system. Each is internally consistent, but they are diametrically opposed in all respects so that partial allegiance is impossible. Remember, too, that their results are as different as their foundations, and their fundamentally irreconcilable natures cannot be reconciled by vacillations between them. Nothing alive is fatherless for life is creation. Therefore, your decision is always an answer to the question, who is my father? And you will be faithful to the father you choose.
  2. Yet what would you say to someone who believe this question really involves conflict? If you made the ego, how can the ego have made you? The authority problem is still the only source of conflict because the ego was made out of the wish of God’s Son to father Him. The ego, then, is nothing more than a delusional system in which you made your own father.  Make no mistake about this.  It sounds insane when it is stated with perfect honesty, but the ego never looks on what it does with perfect honesty. Yet that is its insane premise, which is carefully hidden in the dark cornerstone of its thought system. And either the ego, which you made, is your father, or its whole thought system will not stand.
  3. You make by projection, but God creates by extension. The cornerstone of God’s creation is you, for His thought system is light. Remember the Rays that are there unseen. The more you approach the center of His thought system, the clearer the light becomes. The closer you come to the foundation of the ego’s thought system, the darker and more obscure becomes the way. Yet even the little spark in your mind is enough to lighten it. Bring this light fearlessly with you, and bravely hold it up to the foundation of the ego’s thought system. Be willing to judge it with perfect honesty. Open the dark cornerstone of terror on which it rests and bring it out into the light. There you will see that it rested on meaninglessness, and that everything of which you have been afraid was based on nothing.
  4. My brother, you are part of God and part of me. When you have at last looked at the ego’s foundation without shrinking you will also have looked upon ours. I come to you from our Father to offer you everything again. Do not refuse it in order to keep a dark cornerstone hidden, for its protection will not save you. I give you the lamp and I will go with you. You will not take this journey alone. I will lead you to your true Father, who has need of you, as I have. Will you not answer the call of love with joy?[1]

We cannot be of God and the ego for one cancels out the other.  There is no yin and yang in the eternal.  There is no equal parts suffering and joy, darkness and light, or death and life.  This may be the way we condition ourselves to tolerate the darkness of the world, but it cannot be everlasting for the ego requires as total allegiance to its thought system as that of God! 

In Louise Penny’s beloved Chief Inspector Gamache series, she writes about Dr. Vincent Gilbert, a character whom the other characters refer to as the asshole saint.  This fellow abandoned his responsibilities toward his wife and children, extended family and friends, and his patients and practice as a surgeon, to run off to find himself in a community of Down’s Syndrome patients.  He wrote widely about his experience in the community and became known worldwide for his sacrifice, his work, his spiritual insights, and the gifts that he brought to the community.  However, in his great effort to find himself through good works, he failed to lay his ego down.  Dr. Vincent Gilbert took it with him, and it remained with him, making him of him a ridiculous character, devoted to one part of the Sonship on the one hand, and disliking and being an “asshole” to the rest.  The ego’s function is not to create, but to usurp, cancel out, and oppose the things of God.  There is nothing creative in destruction.  It needs a created being in order to exist at all for it is a leech, a parasite, a virus, we could say.  It needs a host. 

The ego seeks to be our Father, but it cannot be our Father for it is a thief, it does not have anybody’s best interest at heart, and left to its own devices, eventually devours itself, and begins its hypnotic, go-nowhere cycles all over again, symbolized best in mythology as the ouroboros, the reptilian creature which would devour its own tail.[2]

Lies cannot stand alone, they must be an offshoot of truth, lies must be embraced and upheld, cherished and petted, cooed over and worshipped.  Creation which was made in joy, to be love, joy, and peace forever would deny the Fatherhood of God and prefer to genuflect before fictional gods of fear, hatred, sorrow, and war in order to author itself.  It would be like me, stealing your work, putting my name on it, denying you any credit, and taking all the glory.  In order to conceal the truth about my illicit deed, I must decry your name, project my thievery upon you, and obscure the truth about you and your work in every way possible to keep my sin hidden while still taking the credit for your creation.

Understanding the invulnerability of truth, you could simply withdraw from the battle over who created your work.  Instead of taking me to court, spending thousands of dollars on legal fees, and besmirching your own name by becoming vicious, defensive, and devoting your life not to creating other works, but trying to get the one I took from you back, you could just wait it out. 

For I will not be the author of your work and will not know it the way you know it.  I will not love it the way you love it.  I will not be able to devote myself to it the way you devoted yourself to it, nor will I be able to produce another product that matches your work.  Because I chose to steal the creation of another, I will not live in peace, I will not enjoy the sense of accomplishment and contribution of a true author, nor will I be able to tolerate the accomplishments and contributions of other creators, I will not enjoy the fellowship of other creators.  I will always be waiting for the day the truth of the matter is exposed.  

Meanwhile, if you chose peace, you go on to create other works equal to or even better than the one I stole from you.  Your light continues to shine.  You do not let my thievery and my spin on things dim your light but only make it brighter.  Instead of perceiving yourself as a victim, you choose to “give” your work to me and let the gift spur you to even greater works.  This way there is no wasted time, money, or effort spent in conflict, because you chose peace. While this is my earthy attempt to illustrate the peace of God, the patience of God, the wisdom of the freedom He bestows upon us that would deny His Fatherhood and be separated from His truth, my hope is that you will see that there is no conflict.  He gives us what we would have stolen from Him.  He gives us the freedom to explore our fiction and opposition and live it out in a realm that is governed by the false gods of ego.  He is sure of our return to Him over time for none of us would deny Him, would blaspheme Him, would separate ourselves from Him, if we remembered the Reality of His love and devotion. 

This is the only conflict which truly presents itself to us in the world.  Did we make ourselves and thus create our own gods? Did we make “our own father,” which is the underpinning of the entire delusional belief system of the ego.  This takes many forms, but all are the denial of God and Sonship.  It is a denial of love, peace, and joy and the eternal goodwill of God toward His own creation.  We would rather make overgrown, crybaby-turtle gods than to accept God as Father.  A Father who patiently awaits our awakening, tenderly calls for our return to Him, and never withholds His love and devotion.  We have come to embrace the death, sorrow, and torments of the kingdom in which we made for ourselves, we have come to accept our bondage to our own fiction, to our flesh, to our predatory egos. That which is unnatural, insane, and cruel has been packaged into a neat little plastic-wrapped tasty morsel which belies the sorrow, the pain, the bloodshed that is its foundation stone. 

We are the cornerstone of God’s creation.  His thought system has no darkness, no ill will, no bloodthirsty desire for His own.  He loves His creation and calls for them to come to His light.  Jesus says that the Rays of His light are in us even though we cannot see them with our flesh eyes or fathom them with our human perception.  The closer we move toward the core of God’s thought system, the brighter the light in us becomes.  We find peace, we find love, we find joy in that light. We find our true and holy Selves.

The closer we get to the foundation of the ego’s thought system, on the other hand, the darker and nastier and more obscure is the way.  We can be drawn to the light and we can be drawn to the shadows, but to go in both directions is to cancel out any advance in either direction and to remain in the cycles of ego. Preying upon one another for a mere temporal existence with meaningless birth and death cycles that do not extend God’s Kingdom but rather keep us locked in a closed and crowded vicious cycle of disease, decay, and death. 

We are to be fearless with our little sparks of God within us.  We are to put them together and expose the ego’s delusions for what they are.  We are not to let our lights be smothered by fear of the dark hordes of iniquity, the inquisitions, the terror and the torments designed for those who bravely judge the ego’s thought system with perfect honesty.  When we expose the dark dreadful cornerstone where the ego’s belief system rests, we will see the meaninglessness, the emptiness, the bogeyman will shrivel before us, and be as nothing. 

For we are not flesh and blood, we are not male and female, we are not black and white, Greek and Jew.  We are so beyond what the ego has made us out to be.  When we can face the ego’s foundation without fear, without shrinking, without quaking in our shoes when it seems to lash out against us, we will know ourselves as God knows us, as Christ knows us. We will know ourselves as holy and as spirit, and not of flesh. 

Christ comes again.  He returns to the ego realm, not in the clouds to take the few, but in our minds and hearts to deliver us all.  Do not refuse Him.  Keep no dark cornerstones hidden in your mind and heart for its lies will not protect you nor will it save you.  Ask Holy Spirit to expose all that would make of your mind a trough, a manger, a place in which the beastly ego would feed and sustain itself.  Look on it without fear and without trembling and say No More. 

Jesus gives us the light and He goes with us as we return our minds and hearts to God.  We do not take this journey alone – no matter how many people disagree with us, threaten us, forecast doom and gloom, no matter how our egos scream and put up a fuss and tell us how nuts we are for throwing our lives away on Jesus, when we could have the world by the tail!  Christ leads the way to our true Father and our true Identity in Him.  We are necessary to the salvation of the world for without you and without me, the world cannot be saved.  No one is left behind for God does not abandon, go to battle, or shirk His responsibility toward His Creation – nor are we expected to fly away with Jesus and let our loved ones behind.  Accept this call of love with happiness and glee and great appreciation and do not be afraid, do not be timid, do not be falsely modest and deny your worthiness to God, dear brothers.  We take our little lights and join them with the light of Christ and do our small part for God, in mutuality, in Sonship, in peace for these are the conditions of the Kingdom where we belong. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 11 God or the ego. Introduction. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (p. 193-194).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.


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A COURSE IN MIRACLES Chapter 10 The Idols of Sickness

V.  The Denial of God 8-14

8.  Do not look to the god of sickness for healing but only to the God of love, for healing is the acknowledgement of Him. When you acknowledge Him, you will know that He has never ceased to acknowledge you, and that in His acknowledgement of you lies your being. You are not sick, and you cannot die. But you can confuse yourself with things that do. Remember, though, that to do this is blasphemy, for it means that you are looking without love on God and His creation, from which He cannot be separated.

9.  Only the eternal can be loved, for love does not die. What is of God is His forever, and you are of God. Would He allow himself to suffer?  And would he offer His son anything that is not acceptable to Him? If you will accept yourself as God created you, you will be incapable of suffering. Yet to do this you must acknowledge Him as your Creator. This is not because you will be punished otherwise. It is merely because your acknowledgement of your Father is the acknowledgement of yourself as you are.  Your Father created you wholly without sin, wholly without pain and wholly without suffering of any kind. If you deny Him you bring sin, pain, and suffering into your own mind because of the power He gave it. Your mind is capable of creating worlds, but it can also deny what it creates because it is free.

10.  You do not realize how much you have denied yourself, and how much God, in His love, would not have it so. Yet He would not interfere with you, because He would not know His Son if he were not free. To interfere with you would be to attack Himself, God is not insane. When you deny Him, you are insane. Would you have Him share your insanity? God will never cease to love His Son, and His Son will never cease to love Him. That was the condition of His Son’s creation, fixed forever in the mind of God. That is sanity. To deny it is insanity. God gave Himself to you in your creation, and His gifts are eternal. Would you deny yourself to Him?

11.  Out of your gifts to Him the Kingdom will be restored to His Son. His Son removed himself from His gift by refusing to accept what had been created for him, and what he had created in the Name of his Father.  Heaven waits for his return, for it was created as a dwelling place of God’s Son. You are not at home anywhere else, or in any other condition. Do not deny yourself the joy that was created for you for the misery you have made for yourself. God has given you the means for undoing what you have made.  Listen, and you will learn how to remember what you are.

12.  If God knows His children as wholly sinless, it is blasphemous to perceive them as guilty. If God knows His children has wholly without pain, it is blasphemous to perceive suffering anywhere. If God knows His children to be holy, it is blasphemous to feel depressed.  All of these illusions, and the many other forms that blasphemy may take, are refusals to accept creation as it is. If God created His Son perfect, that is how you must learn to see him to learn of his reality. And as part of the Sonship, that is how you must see yourself to learn of yours.

13.  Do not perceive anything God did not create, or you are denying Him. He is the only Fatherhood, and it is yours only because He has given it to you. Your gifts to yourself are meaningless, but your gifts to your creations are like His, because they are given in His Name. That is why your creations are as real as His. Yet the real Fatherhood must be acknowledged if the real Son is to be known. You believe that the sick things you have made are your real creations, because you believe that the sick images you perceive are the sons of God. Only if you accept the Fatherhood of God will you have anything, because His Fatherhood gave you everything. That is why to deny Him is to deny yourself.

14.  Arrogance is the denial of love, because love shares, and arrogance withholds. As long as both appear to you to be desirable, the concept of choice, which is not of God, will remain with you. While this is not true in eternity, it is true in time, so that while time lasts in your mind there will be choices. Time itself is your choice. If you would remember eternity, you must look only on the eternal. If you allow yourself to become preoccupied with the temporal, you are living in time. As always, your choice is determined by what you value.  Time and eternity cannot both be real because they contradict each other, if you will accept only what is timeless as real, you will begin to understand eternity and make it yours.[1]

This world is incapable of healing us for it is this world which has made us sick.  Our healing comes from the God of Love.  Only when we accept that God is Love will we know His undying love and devotion for us, and it is in accepting this that we find our very Being.  We are not sick; we cannot die for that which is created by the God of Love cannot be perverted and it cannot die. 

Do not confuse yourself with things that are sick and that do die for this is the ultimate disrespect toward our Father.  When we think of ourselves as flesh and blood, bone and gristle, sick and disheartened, we are looking without love on all of creation.  We are accepting the perceptual world made by the lies and delusions of an insane mind bent on opposing all that is everlasting and pure.

Love does not die – it goes on forever – all things of God, and we are of God, are forever.  God has no desire for us to suffer nor did He desire His Son to suffer.  We must forsake all teachings that tell us that God ordained the crucifixion of Christ.  God does not require bloodshed and suffering to appease Him.  Christ suffered the crucifixion because His message of God’s Love seemed a rebuke to the religious orders of the day; he suffered the crucifixion to show us that even the most hideous of deaths, humiliation, and torments cannot kill God’s Son.  When we devote our mind to Christ, we accept our place in the Sonship of God.  We are incapable of suffering, our allegiance to the world of pain, suffering, and sorrow is over for we see it for what it is.  We know who we are because we know Who our Father is.  We were not created to be unholy, to suffer in any way, shape, or form, or to sacrifice our happiness and well-being.  To follow a god that says otherwise is to deny God and to bring thoughts of sin, shame, and sorrow into our perceptual world.

When we misuse our minds to make hellish worlds, where we love war, we love mouth battles, we stand about and say mean things and condemn others we prolong our stint in the very worlds we make.  The worlds we make may not be real in the eternal sense of the word but being trapped in such realms can certainly seem to go on forever! 

We are set free of our false kingdoms when we no longer want them.  God has nothing to do with what we have made to take the place of the Kingdom of God.  Do not see God in the events that happen here for to give God glory for anything at all that happens in this Kingdom is to deny Who and What He is.  One day you may seem to have all your prayers answered, but as long as there is one soul in the world that does not know of God’s Love, your pleasant dreams must not be mistaken for God’s favor.  God does not interfere with the dreams of His Son.  God does not come into our dreams and intervene on our behalf.  God is not in the weather no matter how pleasant and blissful the day may be.  God is not in the beauty of the moon or the beautiful face of our beloved.  God is not part of this dream, for if He were part of this dream, we would have an insane God who bestows health on one and disease upon another, who creates one person whole and deforms another.  It would seem as if God played tricks on us, giving first-world citizens obesity-related diseases while giving third world countries starvation-related diseases.  Let us not deny God by believing that He has anything to do with this made-up kingdom!  For this is insanity and God is not insane, but we are until we see the perceptual kingdom for what it is. 

Our return to sanity depends upon our acceptance of who and what we really are as God’s Son.  We are as God created us – Spirit and not flesh, fixed forever in the Mind of God.  Outside the Mind of God there is nothing and in that nothingness we falter and lose our minds – alone and adrift in a sea of invention and devices that being made of nothing amount to nothing.  

Our gift to God is accepting the laws of His Kingdom.  What are the laws of His Kingdom?  The acceptance of our mutuality, the laying down of our separateness, the putting away of any ideas that we can have and be more than everything there is.  Just as our eyes would be useless apart from the rest of our body, so are we useless without God, for we are part of His Kingdom but not all of His Kingdom.  Heaven awaits our return.

We have the means to undo all the lies that landed us in a perceptual world far from Home.  We can remember our true identity.  We can wake up to His Kingdom even while we live in this one:

Stop focusing on what other people are doing wrong – and know others as God knows them.  It is blasphemy to perceive others as they are perceived in this world.  We are to see others with the Vision of Christ – there are no ugly people, there are no disgusting people, there are no irksome people.  We are not to see sickness; we are to see health.  We are not to see sinners; we are to see saints.  We are not to see sorrow; we are to witness joy and gladness.  We will never know God as long as we look to the newsreels of this kingdom to determine what we believe and what we think because this world is a blasphemy against the Creation of God.  This world is what happens to the created when they refuse Creation.  Because God created you perfect, that is how I must learn to see you to learn of your reality.  As part of the Sonship of God, that is how I must see myself to learn of my own reality. 

Perceive anything in this world and we deny the Fatherhood of God and the fatherhood of all that we create in Him.  We can try to extend love, peace, and joy to ourselves all we want but no matter how much try, our gifts are meaningless until we extend them to others.  When we give to others we give in the name of God for nothing can be shared without Him. 

Make no mistake that the inventions in this world are not our creations.  Nor are the human forms of those we call friend and foe.  In the perceptual world everything is twisted and perverted apart from its original Creation.  To look upon the perceptual world as our truth and as our guide is to be misled and sadly mistaken.  The truth about you and the truth about me can only be found in accepting ourselves as Sons of God, our perfection is of Spirit and of truth.  We do not judge ourselves or others in the flesh but rather love one another for this is the law of the Kingdom.  If we accept anything else, we have nothing and we are nothing – to deny God is to deny ourselves. 

Egoism makes a mockery of love.  Egoism withholds love and does not share it unless there are stipulations met.  Love is commodity to the egotistical and the egotistical withhold love for they do not know what it is.  God is Love and God shares of Himself.  He does not withhold His Love for Love is What He is.  There is no choice in this matter.  To believe that there is a choice between ego and God is only a fiction that exists in time for to choose ego is to choose nothing; to choose God is to choose all things. 

We can choose however to stay in time for as long as we need to remember eternity and practice looking upon and learning only the eternal.  As long as we perceive this world, we are stuck in time.  Time and eternity cannot both be real because they contradict one another.  So when we are stuck in time, we are stuck in go-nowhere rounds of that which amounts to nothing.  Lots of stuff seems to happen, but nothing really does. 

As we come to the close of our text reading of Chapter 10 The Idols of Sickness, Jesus tells us that when we accept the timeless as real, will we begin to understand eternity and make it our own.  This is a drastic step in the right direction and will determine our freedom from the idols of the perceptual kingdom and open our mind to the reality of the eternal Kingdom.  In your personal devotions, ask Holy Spirit to help you to see beyond the perceptual kingdom to the eternal one beyond.  As we determine to look upon one another with love, we see beyond our human imperfections, our personality quirks, our egotistical strutting and striving and see the glory of God in each other.  Relating to the divine in each other is our salvation and our sure escape from the enchantment of the idols that pervert us and turn us against each other.  Relating to the divine in each other is our gift to God for He yearns to see His Sons at peace with one another – for peace is not only an attribute of God but our escape from the perverted kingdom.   

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 10 The idols of sickness. V. The denial of God 8-14. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit courtesy of Linda R.

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A COURSE IN MIRACLES Chapter 10 The Idols of Sickness

IV.  The End of Sickness

  1. All magic is an attempt at reconciling the irreconcilable. All religion is the recognition that the irreconcilable cannot be reconciled. Sickness and perfection are irreconcilable. If God created you perfect, you are perfect. If you believe you can be sick you have placed other gods before him. God is not at war with the god of sickness you made, but you are. He is the symbol of deciding against God, and you are afraid of him because he cannot be reconciled with God’s Will. If you attack him, you will make him real to you. But if you refuse to worship him in whatever form he may appear to you, and wherever you think you see him, he will disappear into the nothingness out of which he was made.
  2. Reality can dawn upon only an unclouded mind. It is always there to be accepted, but its acceptance depends on your willingness to have it. To know reality must involve the willingness to judge unreality for what it is. To overlook nothingness is merely to judge it correctly, and because of your ability to evaluate it truly, to let it go. Knowledge cannot dawn on a mind full of illusions because truth and illusions are irreconcilable. Truth is whole and cannot be known by part of a mind.
  3. The Sonship cannot be perceived as partly sick, because to perceive it that way is not to perceive it at all. If the Sonship is one, it is one in all respects. One cannot be divided. If you perceive other gods your mind is split, and you will not be able to limit the split, because it is a sign that you have removed part of your mind from God’s Will. This means it is out of control. To be out of control is to be out of reason, and then the mind does become unreasonable. By defining the mind wrongly, you perceive it turning wrongly.
  4. God’s laws will keep your mind at peace because peace is His Will, and His laws are established to uphold it. His are the laws of freedom, but yours are the laws of bondage. Since freedom and bondage are irreconcilable, their laws cannot be understood together. The laws of God work only for your good, and there are no other laws beside His. Everything else is merely lawless and therefore chaotic. Yet God Himself has protected everything He created by His laws. Everything that is not under them does not exist. “Laws of chaos” is a meaningless term. Creation is perfectly lawful and the chaotic is without meaning because it is without God. You have “given” your peace to the gods you made, but they are not there to take it from you, and you cannot give it to them.
  5. You are not free to give up freedom, but only to deny it. You cannot do what God did not intend, because what He did not intend does not happen. Your gods do not bring chaos. You are endowing them with chaos and accepting it of them. All this has never been. Nothing but the laws of God has ever been and nothing but His Will will ever be. You were created through His laws and by His Will, and the manner of your creation established you a creator. What you have made is so unworthy of you that you could hardly want it if you were willing to see it as it is. You will see nothing at all. And your vision will automatically look beyond it, to what is in you and all around you. Reality cannot break through the obstructions you interpose, but it will envelope you completely when you let them go.
  6. When you have experienced the protection of God, the making of idols becomes inconceivable. There are no strange images in the mind of God, and what is not in His mind cannot be in yours, because you are of one mind and that mind belongs to Him. It is yours because it belongs to Him, for to Him ownership is sharing. And if it is so for Him, it is so for you. His definitions are His laws, for by them He established the universe as what it is. No false gods you attempt to interpose between yourself and your reality affect truth at all.  Peace is yours because God created you. And He created nothing else.
  7. The miracle is the act of a Son of God who has laid aside all false gods and calls on his brothers to do likewise. It is an act of faith, because it is a recognition that his brother can do it. It is a call to the Holy Spirit in his mind, that is strengthened by joining. Because the miracle worker has heard God’s Voice, he strengthens it in a sick brother by weakening his belief in sickness, which he does not share. The power of one mind can shine into another, because all the lamps of God were lit by the same spark. It is everywhere and it is eternal.
  8. In many only the spark remains, for the Great Rays are obscured. Yet God has kept the spark alive so that the Rays can never be completely forgotten. If you but see the little spark you will learn of the greater light, for the Rays are there unseen. Perceiving the spark will heal but knowing the light will create. Yet in the returning the little light must be acknowledged first, for the separation was a descent from magnitude to littleness. But the spark is still as pure as the great light, it is the remaining call of creation. Put all your faith in it, and God Himself will answer you.[1]

Magic is not of God.  Signs and wonders, omens and potions, incantations and prophesies are properties of magic which struggle to reconcile this realm with the Kingdom of Heaven.  Flesh and Spirit cannot be reconciled anymore than sickness and wellness.  God created us perfect, and nothing can change that.  If we believe that God’s Son or any part of God’s Creation can be perverted, sick, dead, or dying we have placed idols of sickness before God.  We have said that God and His creation is a bleak joke; there is no point in believing in such a God for He abandons His own creations and rejects them for their mistakes. 

God is not at war with the perceptual world, but we are.  We are mortified by our idols and our magic.  There should be no surprise when our children choose atheism, agnosticism, or any of the other alternate forms of religion in place of the doctrines that we teach them.  Who wants to place their trust, their minds, their everlasting spirits in servitude to a deity who plays favorites, curses us, pronounces war upon us, demands sacrifices, and craves praise?  The idols of this world cannot be trusted to have our best interests at heart.

These conceptions of God that stand in place of His reality are fearful.  They attract large numbers of people.  They predict dire warnings and demand huge sacrifices.  They devise curses and torments for all those who dare to defy them.  To attack such beliefs is to arouse the ire of all who cherish idols of sickness and perversions.  To be taken in by the magical properties that accompany idolatry, images, and the perceptual kingdom is to always be put in a position to defend its lies, its falsehoods, its meanness, and illogic.  Reality can only dawn upon a mind unclouded by its deceptions.  To know reality, we must be willing to judge unreality for what it is. 

The only way to correctly respond to lies, to falsehood, to trickery is to refuse to sponsor it, to deny our endorsement.  Declaring war against false reality is to fight an imaginary battle!  To battle nothingness is to engage in senselessness.  Jesus tells us to speak truth, but not to argue, get angry, or go on rants for this is to make something out of nothing and it not only wastes our time, but denies us knowledge.     

When we perceive each other as perverts, as heathen, as ungodly and destined for hell we are not perceiving the Sonship, we are perceiving the ego’s version of creation.  We are judging with our flesh eyes and our flesh perceptions.  We have removed part of our mind from God’s Will.  We will then be the ones that lose control and follow the whims of the world.  We will take sides against each other.  We will lose our sense of reason, we will go down needless paths of sorrow and despair, and we will endorse war rather than peace.  Instead of upholding our brothers, we will take up arms against them. 

To end sickness, we must keep our mind at rest in God.  Resting in the peace of God upholds God’s law of freedom.  Choose the newsreels of the perceptual world in place of the peace of God and we are under the laws of bondage.  If we give our peace to the perceptual world, we are giving our peace to the idols of sickness, we are giving our peace to that which is a lie and an illusion.  We are wasting ourselves on nothingness, we will spend time in suffering rather than in returning to God from whence we came.  God’s laws center on peace.  We cannot know our Sonship in God and our Brotherhood in Christ without peace.  

Jesus tells us in paragraph four that we are not free to give up our freedom.  Freedom is what we are, it is one of the attributes of God and is therefor one of our attributes.  We cannot shake our freedom, but we can deny it.  No matter what happens in a fictional realm, it has no bearing at all upon eternity.  Lies cannot hurt the truth, but only substitute for truth and can therefore keep us engaged in a realm of never was and never will be.  Jesus tells us that what we have made here is so unworthy of us that if we were willing to really look at it for what it is, we would see nothing at all.  The more we accept the truth of God, the more our vision will automatically look beyond the perceptual world to what is in and all around us.  The truth of God will not interfere with lies, with dreams, with vain imaginings, but the truth of God does envelope us completely when we cast aside all idols of sickness and false beliefs. 

We cannot even conceive of idolatry when we know the protection of God.  No mean thoughts against our neighbor, no hard feelings toward our bosses and coworkers, no aggression and resentment and ill will toward anything or anybody in the perceptual world will cloud our mind or obstruct the truth from us when we accept our oneness with God, when we know that our minds belong to us because they belong to Him.  To God, ownership is sharing, not hoarding, not having it all and only giving us in part!  As it is for God, so it is for us.  Peace is ours because God is Peace, and God created us, and He did not create anything but that which is one with Him.   

In this world a miracle is when we, as a Son of God, lay aside all allegiance to the gods of this world and calls on the Sonship to do the same.  This is an incredible act of faith because it recognizes that not only have we seen the world for what it is but that our brothers are also recognizing this world as nothing more than a substitute for truth.  Laying aside the false gods of this world is an answer to the call of Holy Spirit in our minds and we strengthen this call by joining it.  A miracle worker has heard God’s Voice. He strengthens God’s Voice in others by diminishing their belief in perversions, which he has denied.  Jesus says that the power of one mind shines into another because all the lamps of God were lit by the same spark which is everywhere and always!

In paragraph five Jesus tells us to take a good long look at what we have created and find it unworthy of the Sonship of God. When we put down our attraction for the perceptual world, when we realize our bondage to the chemicals, impulses, and drives of the flesh, when we are no longer the least bit interested in harming one another or any part of Creation, the Great Rays of Christ shines forth from within us.  We know the power of the Universe is ours for we are Sons of God, made in His likeness.  There will be nothing in the temporal world that we could want or need for we know God as our Father and as ourselves. 

In your personal devotional today, ask Holy Spirit to teach you to seek peace instead of war; to cherish others rather than go to war with them; to ask for salvation and correction rather than punishment and doom. 

[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 10 The idols of sickness. IV The end of sickness. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).

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