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Review: “I am not a body. I am free. For I am still as God created me.”
“The peace of God is shining in me now.”
This world was made as a fence to keep God out. One of the chief ego mechanisms to keep awareness of God’s Presence hidden is to keep us preoccupied with all the forms found in this world of separation. As long as the ego can keep us busy with endless pursuits that cannot bring us the peace of God, the ego thought system remains in tact.
In this world, most, if not all, of the hours of the day are spent directly or indirectly taking care of the body, which we believe is our identity. We are either working to earn money to pay for food, clothing or housing for the body, or we are spending time giving it rest, bathing it, exercising it, preening it, trying to make it “acceptable,” whatever that means to us.
When we are not actively involved in these things, we worry about things that could happen to the body, so we build defenses to protect against what might happen. This image that we have of ourselves is so fragile that it seems it can be damaged by as little as a word or a momentary glance, which can throw us into fear or guilt in an instant. All of this keeps our attention on a frantic and frenzied agenda to protect what we think we are.
Yet this image has nothing to do with our true reality, with our Self as God created us. This is why we are asked to repeat many times a day for 20 days, “I am not a body. I am free. For I am still as God created me.” This repetition will help us loosen our identification with the false image we have held of ourselves. Each time we can take a moment to be still, to set aside the frenzy of the world ever so little, we move a step closer to recognizing the peace of God that is shining in us right now.
As we can still our minds and feel the peace of God, we feel His safety and His strength. The body does not need our protection. It will reflect the safety we know when we remember the peace of God that is shining in our hearts.
We are not asked to give up our identification with the body in one fell swoop, for the seeming sacrifice would be too frightening. We are simply asked to practice giving our attention to the fact that we are not a body. This practice will gently wean us from thinking we are a body to recognizing that we are in fact Love’s extension, wholly safe in Love.
While we remain in the dream of this world, we will continue doing things to care for the body. But we will recognize more and more that many of the things we thought would keep us safe or make us feel better really accomplish nothing. And so our life will become simpler and easier. Gradually more of our time is used for awakening and serving the awakening of others. Our brothers become less and less adversaries and more and more seen as friends and companions, helping us return Home. I am grateful to be reminded that the peace of God is shining in me now.
The merry-go-round of this world will continue to go round and round until we choose to stop it. On this merry-go-round it feels like a swirl of activity, but we are really going nowhere. We are going round and round, repeating the past over and over until we decide to step off and give our mind a rest from the ego thought system. Once we step off, there is quiet. There is stillness. We can experience the peace of God. We can hear the Holy Spirit and be aware of Its returning us to the truth.
The doorway through which we return Home is through quieting our minds. When our minds are filled with the ego thought system, there is no room left to feel the peace of God. The peace of God is felt when all that is laid down. The peace of God is eternal. It is always there, waiting for our return. The peace of God is what we are.
We may step back on the merry-go-round, but this time we have a new purpose. Everything is given a new meaning. We see everything differently. We realize how important it is to frequently step off and go to that quiet place in our minds where our Holy Spirit brings us peace and understanding.
Our gratitude overflows as we learn to let go of fear thoughts and return to the Love we are. We remember we are not a body, we are free. Nothing has changed. We are eternally extensions of Love and nothing else. Just Love eternally. In truth, we do live happily ever after as one, as Love.
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How to Read References for Quotes from A Course in Miracles
Below are example references to specific sentences using the notation of the Second & Third Editions of A Course in Miracles published by the Foundation for Inner Peace:
T-26.IV.4:7 = Text, Chapt. 26, Section IV, paragraph 4, sentence 7.
W-pI.169.5:2 = Workbook, Part I, Lesson 169, paragraph 5, sentence 2.
M-13.3:2 = Manual for Teachers, Question 13, paragraph 3, sentence 2.
C-6.4:6 = Clarification of Terms, Term 6, paragraph 4, sentence 6
The above numbering system
of the Second & Third Editions is © Copyright 1992,
The Foundation for A Course in Miracles.
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