A Course in Miracles Text Made Simple

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.

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Chapter 17: Forgiveness and the Holy Relationship

Section VIII: The Conditions of Peace

Read ACIM Chapter 17, Section VIII (pages 370-71)

Why is it so important to reach beyond the limits of the body’s senses to the holy instant?

When we believe in separation, in a world of separate individuals with bodies and personalities, we are identified with the ego thought system. We believe what the body’s eyes show us and what we cannot see with the body’s eyes seems unreal and unbelievable. Yet the truth in our brother and ourselves cannot be seen with the body’s eyes because they were made to make illusions appear real. We have come to trust in the body’s senses and distrust what cannot be perceived with the body. But trust in the body, an illusion, is really trust in nothing. That is why belief in illusions is faithlessness. Becoming aware of the truth in our brother as the loving extension of Love he is requires faith because we are reaching beyond the limits of the body’s senses. We are being asked to trust in the reality of our brother as Love instead of identifying him with a body. The holy instant is an experience of perception beyond the body. That is why, “It calls forth just the same suspension of faithlessness, withheld and left unused, that faith might answer to the call of truth.” (1:3)

Why does forgiveness help us see through the eyes of wholeness and bring us peace?

This last section of Chapter 17 is the perfect culmination in making it clear that forgiveness makes every relationship holy. The Holy Spirit has one purpose for every situation, and that is to let the truth be what it is without trying to change it. This is the same as saying to let God be what He is without trying to change Him. This is what we mean by forgiveness and why we experience in the holy instant. Jesus tells us in paragraph one: “The holy instant is the shining example, the clear and unequivocal demonstration of the meaning of every relationship and every situation, seen as a whole.” (1:4) Seen as a whole, every relationship really is a relationship with God, a relationship with Love as Love Is. When we see through the eyes of wholeness, perfect peace is there, because there is no conflict in wholeness. Awareness of our beingness in peace is allowed when we let go of trying to change what cannot be changed.

Why is it so important to ‘let truth be what it is’?

In paragraph two Jesus brings our awakening down to its simplest terms: “This simple courtesy is all the Holy Spirit asks of you. Let truth be what it is. Do not intrude upon it, do not attack it, do not interrupt its coming. Let it encompass every situation and bring you peace.” (2:1-4) If we are not aware of the holy instant in every situation, it is helpful for us to honestly recognize that we are intruding upon it, attacking it and interrupting its coming in some way. That is what time is for now — expanding our willingness to let truth be what it is. There are thousands of words in this Course, but it all comes down to this: Simply letting truth be what it is instead of trying to substitute illusions in its place.

How do we apply this goal of letting truth be what it is in our daily life?

For a moment, imagine what your life would be like if you let every situation be another opportunity to be aware of the truth — the holy instant. Take a minute now and think of how you can apply this to your life situations. Relax, step back, quiet your mind of all you think you know about how your life ‘is.’ Let the Holy Spirit show you how awareness of the truth could be accomplished with your current life circumstances. Really listen in deep quiet. Relax into the truth… When you are finished with your quiet time, you may want to write write notes about your experience to reinforce this awareness so you can apply it to your daily thought patterns.

Your goal now every day is to simply let the truth be what it is. You are tired of the crucifixion and are ready for the resurrection. You see that putting your faith in illusions has only brought struggle, depression, sickness and pain. You see the need to continue to let your mind be open to accepting the truth. You let go of the strain of efforting on your own and relax into following Holy Spirit because you know that your job is not to decide anything on your own. Your job is to be receptive and open to Holy Spirit’s lead. As you accept the Holy Spirit’s goal for your relationships, you assume your part in your brother’s redemption and your own. You fully accept responsibility for your brother because you know he is one with you. You remember your only purpose is to see the truth in him.

How do we become a ‘giver of peace’ like Jesus?

Jesus gives us an important message at the conclusion of this section: “When you accepted truth as the goal for your relationship, you became a giver of peace as surely as your Father gave peace to you. ...Give as you have received. And demonstrate that you have risen far beyond any situation that could hold you back, and keep you separate from Him Whose call you answered.” (6:1,6-7) So now you are a ‘giver of peace.’ You receive peace and give peace. This is your calling. This is your joy.

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Reference Keys for
A Course in Miracles Quotes

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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