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 ACIM Chapter 7, Section VIII (pages 129-131)
This section explains the fundamental law of mind that is always in operation in our minds. This fundamental law of mind is the foundation for both extension and projection. Here we are led to understand what this fundamental law of mind is and the difference between extension, which is used in God’s Kingdom, and projection, which is used in the ego’s world. “To the ego, the law is perceived as a means of getting rid of something it does not want. To the Holy Spirit, it is the fundamental law of sharing, by which you give what you value in order to keep it in your mind.” (1:5-6) Because we are mind and only mind, this fundamental law is always in effect, so our mind must either extend or project, because that is how it lives or exists.
Extension uses the fundamental law of mind through sharing, which maintains our awareness of our unity with Love. Love lives by Its extension. To know our real Life in God’s Kingdom, we must share or extend Love in order to know that we are Love. Being Love is synonymous with giving or extending Love. That is why the Holy Spirit always leads us to share the truth of Love in every mind.
If we try to see (or project) anything else, we are denying Love, and thus rejecting It. Projection rejects the seamless oneness of Love and perceives our identities as separate from It. With projection we are rejecting Love as God created it and since the thoughts in our mind do not leave our mind, what we experience is rejection. We are rejecting our Self as God created us. Rejection is in our mind and ideas leave not their source. Because we have joined with the ego thought system, we have joined with rejection and therefore will experience rejection and lack of Love.
Because we hate the feelings of rejection and conflict that come with thoughts of separation, the ego has devised a warped version of the power of the mind to solve that problem. “It projects conflict from your mind to other minds, in an attempt to persuade you that you have gotten rid of the problem.” (2:6) This effort to hurl the conflict within our minds onto other minds does not work because ideas do not leave their source. Instead of getting rid of conflict, it only preserves conflict. “Since the projections have not left their minds, they are forced to engage in constant activity in order not to recognize this.” (3:12)
Jesus is helping us understand here that the mind is one and continues to be one, no matter what delusions we may believe in. The mind cannot be broken into pieces. The mind cannot separate. Projection creates the illusion that this has happened, but we are learning that delusions cannot make reality. “It is the product of the misapplication of the laws of God by distorted minds that are misusing their power.” (4:9)
The ego is not our master. We are not its subjects. The ego depends entirely on our belief in it. Since projection is the ego’s chief defense mechanism, it tries to protect itself by persuading us to project the responsibility for our belief in it onto others. This seems to provide relief, but actually preserves our belief in the ego because we cannot hold a belief about others without also believing it about ourselves. “The belief that by seeing it outside you have excluded it from within is a complete distortion of the power of extension.” (3:8)
To get out of the circular thought system that perpetuates the ego, we need to accept sole responsibility for the ego’s existence in our mind. This is the key to our freedom because it returns control of our awareness of reality back to us. The ego will cease to seem to exist the moment we withdraw our belief from it. We have the power to change our belief in every moment. The ego is simply an error, not to be punished or battled against, but to be corrected.
Because we made the ego by our belief, we need help from beyond our belief to correct the error. This is why as we learn to recognize the errors of our belief in the ego, it is important that we “give them over quickly to the Holy Spirit to be undone completely, so that all their effects will vanish from your mind and from the Sonship as a whole.” (5:6)
The Holy Spirit teaches us how to recognize the ego’s meaninglessness. As we learn to recognize this, we will naturally let go of our belief in the ego because “...no one can keep a belief he has judged to be unbelievable.” (6:2) The more we join with the Holy Spirit, the more we will recognize that the ego is an unbelievable belief. When we accept the Holy Spirit as our Guide, we are accepting the Atonement, realizing that we are not alone.
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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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