To gain the most from A Course in Miracles Text Made Simple, we recommend that
you read the corresponding chapter and section in the Text of the Second or
Third Edition of A Course in Miracles published by the Foundation for Inner Peace.
Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 25, Section II. (pages 520-523)
The idea of time, with a past and a future, comes from within the ego thought system. It is founded on the idea that God’s Son could separate from God’s oneness and be separate and alone. The thought system of separation from God made up the false idea of ‘time,’ with a past and future that is constantly changing. This idea was set in place to replace God’s Creation, which is changeless and therefore the eternal now.
Tied with the false idea of time that is constantly changing is the idea that we we can have individual ‘lives’ as separate bodies that are born into a world where everything is different and in a constant state of flux and change. In this false story, our ‘life’ ends with the death of the body.
If we think we are here in a separate body with a lot of other separate bodies, we have bought into the ego idea of being separate and alone and have become lost in nightmares of being born into a constantly changing world that ends in sickness and death. We do not realize that we have just become lost in nightmarish dreams that we have changed from how we were created by God.
Part of the ego plan to displace the guilt that comes from the choice to be separate from God is to project this guilt onto the ‘other’ separate bodies we see around us in this dream. Inherent in the ego identity is self-ishness, or the belief that each individual person needs to look out for his/her own self-interest in order to survive and be happy. This makes for a world where everyone must protect their own self-interest or they will surely lose. This story of separation guarantees defense and attack, with plenty of guilt to go around for everyone caught up in this dream.
The past becomes a storehouse for memories of guilty parties who have done us wrong. To help release us from this guilty spiral, Jesus tells us in Chapter 13, Section VI: “When you have learned to look on everyone with no reference at all to the past, either his or yours as you perceived it, you will be able to learn from what you see now. For the past can cast no shadow to darken the present, unless you are afraid of light. And only if you are would you choose to bring darkness [the past] with you, and by holding it [the past] in your mind, see [the past] as a dark cloud that shrouds your brothers and conceals their reality from your sight.” (T-13.VI.2:3-5)
This is also why Jesus tells us in this section: “The only value that the past can hold is that you learn it gave you no rewards which you would want to keep. For only thus will you be willing to relinquish it, and have it gone forever.” (1:7-8) We have been afraid of the Light of truth in the past, but now we know that our present happiness depends on letting go of that storehouse of guilty memories.
Jesus answers this in the following way: “Is it not strange that you should cherish still some hope of satisfaction from the world you see? In no respect, at any time or place, has anything but fear and guilt been your reward. … To place your hopes where no hope lies must make you hopeless. Yet is this hopelessness your choice, while you would seek for hope where none is ever found.” (2:1-2, 5-6)
Instead of treasuring separate bodies, we can treasure seeing everyone as the Holy Spirit sees them. We can treasure seeing every person around us as God created them. Here we are told, “However much [your brother] overlooks the masterpiece in him and sees only a frame of darkness, it is still your only function to behold in him what he sees not. And in this seeing is the vision shared that looks on Christ instead of seeing death [the body].” (8:7)
Jesus tells us of the great joy and gratitude in Heaven as we join our Father in recognizing His masterpiece: “How could the Lord of Heaven not be glad if you appreciate His masterpiece? What could He do but offer thanks to you who love His Son as He does? Would He not make known to you His Love, if you but share His praise of what He loves? God cherishes creation as the perfect Father that He is. And so His joy is made complete when any part of Him joins in His praise, to share His joy. [The Christ in] this brother is His perfect gift to you. And He is glad and thankful when you thank His perfect Son for being what he is. And all His thanks and gladness shine on you who would complete His joy, along with Him.” (9:1-8)
We are the same as every brother because …“God Himself is One, and not divided in His Will.” (11:1) This means we cannot be different and alone. As we are willing to see through the eyes of Christ, we see that we never left God’s Oneness, and neither has our brother. We let go of the past and remember the eternal present because we all are still as God created us, right now.
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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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