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 28: the Undoing of Fear

Section III. The Agreement to Join

Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 28, Section III. (pages 596-598)

What is our main concern right now?

Jesus tells us, “The miracle alone is your concern at present. Here is where we must begin. And having started, will the way be made serene and simple in the rising up to waking and the ending of the dream.” (1:3-5)

Here we are being encouraged to accept the change in perception the miracle brings us because this is what helps us let go of fearful dreams. We are being asked not to give our support to dreams of separation but receive the miracle from the Holy Spirit, Who lifts the veil of separation so that we can be aware of our oneness beyond the dream of separate bodies. We receive miracles when we are willing to quiet our minds and be still. In quietness is every problem quietly resolved by receiving the awareness that we still are as God created us. We are still safe in Heaven.

What is the effect of minds that join?

“Uniting with a brother’s mind prevents the cause of sickness and perceived effects. Healing is the effect of minds that join, as sickness comes from minds that separate.” (2:5-6)

Earlier in the Course we learned that we are either joining with the ego thought system, where we experience lack, fear, guilt and pain, or we are joining with the Holy Spirit’s miracles of thought reversal, where we are returned to the awareness of our united true Self as one with God. When we refuse to join with thoughts of separation, we aid in removing the glue that holds us to the dream. This helps every brother because as we remove our support from duality thinking, we weaken it.

Jesus tells us, “If you withhold agreement and accept the part you play in making sickness real, the other mind cannot project its guilt without your aid in letting it perceive itself as separate and apart from you.” (2:3) We are being encouraged here not to share our brother’s dream of sickness (separation from our Source) and instead, allow in the awareness that minds are joined in Love now and for eternity and could never be separate and alone.

What holds the seeds of pestilence and every form of ill?

Jesus is bringing us to the awareness that the cause of all pain and suffering is our belief in separation. Once we realize this, we will let our belief in separation go. He tells us, “The gap is little. Yet it holds the seeds of pestilence and every form of ill, because it is a wish to keep apart and not to join.” (4:2-3 italics added)

When we believe in bodies, we think that the gap that appears to be between us is very big. To help us go beyond this false belief in separate bodies, Jesus reminds us that the ocean is one even though the little ripples that appear when a ship passes by makes it briefly look like the waves are separate. It may look like the separation is real for an instant, but the ocean is still one and the waves are not really separate from the ocean, ever.

How does Jesus describe the world?

He tells us, “What is the world except a little gap perceived to tear eternity apart, and break it into days and months and years? And what are you who live within the world except a picture of the Son of God in broken pieces, each concealed within a separate and uncertain bit of clay?” (7:4-5)

Here we see our separate bodies are just an image of separate pieces held within an imagined framework of time and space with the purpose of making the gap between us appear to be real. We are trying to fool ourselves into thinking we, like the wave, are separate from God’s one ocean of Love.

What is the feast the miracle brings?

Jesus describes the feast that we experience when we ask that the miracle come to us: “The miracle would leave no proof of guilt to bring you witness to what never was. And in your storehouse [the miracle] will make a place of welcome for your Father and your Self. The door is open that all those may come who would no longer starve, and would enjoy the feast of plenty set before them there. And they will meet with your invited Guests (your Father and your Self) the miracle has asked to come to you.

“This is a feast unlike indeed to those the dreaming of the world has shown. For here, the more that anyone receives, the more is left for all the rest to share. The Guests have brought unlimited supply with Them. And no one is deprived or can deprive. Here is a feast the Father lays before His Son, and shares it equally with him. And in Their sharing there can be no gap in which abundance falters and grows thin.” (8:5-8, 9:1-6)

How can we resist an invitation to a feast such as this? We accept the feast when we accept the miracle. We accept the miracle as we leave our mind open to correction by the Holy Spirit, our one true Self.

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Chapter 28: the Undoing of Fear

Section II. Reversing Effect and Cause

Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 28, Section II. (pages 592-595)

Why are we just like our Father?

Here Jesus reinforces the idea that God (Love) extends Itself eternally. This eternal extension of Love is What Creation is and the Cause of all that Is. In previous sections we are told Love shares all of Itself with All, eternally. This sharing quality of Love is why we all have and are all of what Love has and Is. This is why Love is the same as Oneness. Love is the Source and the Father of all Cause.

Because we are Love’s extension, we extend Love or create just like our Father. We know our Identity is Love as we extend Love like our Father does. This is why Jesus tells us, “The circle of creation has no end. Its starting and its ending are the same. But in itself it holds the universe of all creation, without beginning and without an end.” (1:6-8)

Why is purity not of the body?

Because we are purely of our Father, we cannot be contained by a body. Our Father is universal and being one with our Father, we are universal. We are the idea of Love in the Mind of Love, just like our Father is. In paragraph 2 we are told, “Purity is not confined. It is the nature of the innocent to be forever uncontained, without a barrier or limitation. Thus is purity not of the body. Nor can it be found where limitation is.” (2:3-6)

In Chapter 15, Section VI, Jesus explains it this way: “You do not find it difficult to believe that when another calls on God or Love, your call remains as strong. Nor do you think that when God answers him, your hope of answer is diminished. On the contrary, you are more inclined to regard his success as witness to the possibility of yours. That is because you recognize, however dimly, that God is an idea, and so your faith in Him is strengthened by sharing. What you find difficult to accept is the fact that, like your Father, you are an idea. And like Him, you can give yourself completely, wholly without loss and only with gain. Herein lies peace, for here there is no conflict.” (T-15.VI.4:1-7 italics added)

What happens when we try to ‘father’ our own ‘creation’?

What happens is that we dream a dream of being unlike our Father. As we come to recognize that we are the one who is making up the dream and that it is not being forced upon us by an ‘outside’ force, we can learn to choose once again, and this time choose the Holy Spirit’s healing dream instead of dreams of death (separation).

Jesus tells us, “Yet if you are the dreamer, you perceive this much at least: That you have caused the dream, and can accept another dream as well. But for this change in content of the dream, it must be realized that it is you who dreamed the dreaming that you do not like. It is but an effect that you have caused, and you would not be cause of this effect.” (5:2-4)

What does Jesus say is a crucial step in dealing with illusions?

We are fearful of our illusions because we do not realize that they are just dreams and that we are making them up ourselves. Jesus wants us to understand that we can realize that we are the author of the dream. We can realize that we are just attempting to ‘father’ our own creation and that the content of the dream is untrue. We can realize that we remain as our Father created us and are still safe in God.

Jesus explains it this way: “The miracle establishes you dream a dream, and that its content is not true. This is a crucial step in dealing with illusions. No one is afraid of them when he perceives he made them up. The fear was held in place because he did not see that he was author of the dream, and not a figure in the dream. He gives himself the consequences that he dreams he gave his brother. And it is but this the dream has put together and has offered him, to show him that his wishes have been done. …The miracle does nothing but to show him that he has done nothing.” (7:1-6, 10)

How does the ego thought system try to reverse effect and cause?

Inherent in the ego thought system is the denial of the fact that we are experiencing the dream of separation from our Source because we want the dream of differences to be true. We want our stories of being different from God to be true. We want to deny that we are rejecting the truth that we share one Mind with God because we can’t stand the guilt that comes with rejecting and trying to leave our Father.

Because this denial of wanting to be separate from our Source is what holds the ego world in place, the ego’s stories are set up to make it look like we are not the creator of the dream, but rather its victim. In our dreams, the figures in the dream take on the role as the creator of the dream and we are at the dream’s mercy. In the ego’s thinking, these stories of vulnerability, victimhood and death of the body prove that we are not the maker of the dream.

Jesus explains it this way: “In the dream, the dreamer made himself. But what he made has turned against him, taking on the role of its creator, as the dreamer had. And as he hated his Creator, so the figures in the dream have hated him. His body is their slave, which they abuse because the motives he has given it have they adopted as their own. And hate it for the vengeance it would offer them. It is their vengeance on the body which appears to prove the dreamer could not be the maker of the dream. [This is how] effect and cause are first split off, and then reversed, so that effect becomes a cause; the cause effect.” (8:2-8)

Here we see just how crazy and upside down the dream we are trying to make real is. Here we see why there is so much fear around recognizing that we are the author of the dream. We try to make it look like we are the effect of a cause that is not our own decision. That is why victimhood and death of the body stories are the core of the ego’s defense system.

How does the Holy Spirit free us from the fearful effects we see?

Because of the need to project guilt, the ego’s dream script demonstrates that our brother’s are guilty and that we are at the guilty world’s mercy. The Holy Spirit’s forgiving dreams reverse this script to show us the Christ in every brother, which helps us recognize our own innocence. In forgiving dreams the Holy Spirit brings we no longer need to reverse effect and cause because guilt is removed.

In paragraph 10 we are told: “In His forgiving dreams are the effects of [your dreams] undone, and hated enemies perceived as friends with merciful intent. Their enmity is seen as causeless now, because they did not make [the dream]. And you can accept the role of maker of their hate, because you see that [the dream of hate] has no effects.” (10:3-5)

What is the lesson the miracle brings?

Here we are seeing that we continue to experience fearful thoughts of sickness and death and being at the mercy of a sinful world because we are still choosing to replace our true Identity as Love’s extension. As we let go of denying we are the cause of dream scripts, we no longer need dreams of pain and suffering in order to project guilt. As we choose to let Holy Spirit’s miracles replace what we made, we learn the following lesson: “The lesson is the mind was sick that thought the body could be sick; projecting out its guilt caused nothing, and had no effects.” (11:7)

As we are willing to let go of our barriers and return to our Father in Heaven, the fear disappears and we remember that we are still as God created us. We know that we never left Heaven.

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Chapter 28: the Undoing of Fear

Section I. The Present Memory

Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 28, Section I. (pages 589-592)

What is the ego’s use of memory?

Jesus helps us see how the ego uses memory as a defense to hold guilt in place and hide the awareness of the eternal present. He tells us: “Remembering is as selective as perception, being its past tense. It is perception of the past as if it were occurring now, and still were there to see. Memory, like perception, is a skill made up by you to take the place of what God gave in your creation.” (2:7)

How does the ego use concepts of time to keep us from remembering the eternal present?

The ego thought system brings in the mistaken ideas that: 1. The past causes the present. 2. We cannot change the past because what is past is over and gone. This is how the ego keeps guilt going in an endless cycle until we are willing to let the Holy Spirit reverse this thinking.

In paragraph 6 Jesus clarifies this further: “Yet time is but another phase of what does nothing. It works hand in hand with all the other attributes with which you seek to keep concealed the truth about yourself. Time neither takes away nor can restore. And yet you make strange use of [time] as if the past had caused the present, which is but a consequence in which no change can be made possible because its cause has gone. Yet change must have a cause that will endure, or else it will not last. No change can be made in the present if its cause is past. Only the past is held in memory as you make use if it, and so it is a way to hold the past against the now.” (6:1-7)

How does the Holy Spirit make use of memory?

Because we think of memory as something from the past instead of remembering the eternal present, we need our ideas about time corrected by the Holy Spirit. Jesus clarifies this confused thinking when he tells us: “The Holy Spirit can indeed make use of memory, for God Himself is there. Yet this is not a memory of past events, but only of a present state. You are so long accustomed to believe that memory holds only what is past, that it is hard for you to realize [memory] is a skill that can remember now. …The Holy Spirit’s use of memory is quite apart from time. He does not seek to use [memory] as a means to keep the past, but rather as a way to let it go.” (4:1-3, 5:1-2)

What does a miracle show us?

A miracle simply removes the blocks to the awareness of Love’s presence. As we open to receiving a miracle from our true Self, the false ideas of a past or future are removed so that the eternal Light of truth can return to our awareness. We see that nothing has happened to change God’s one Son. We see that Love is changeless and know that we are still Love and nothing else.

Jesus tells us: “The miracle reminds you of a Cause forever present, perfectly untouched by time and interference. Never changed from what [Cause — God] is. And you are [Cause’s] effect, as changeless and as perfect as Itself. [God’s] memory does not lie in the past, nor waits the future. [God] is not revealed in miracles. [Miracles] but remind you that [God] has not gone. When you forgive [God] for your sins, [God or Cause] will no longer be denied. (9:4-10)

How does a miracle come to us?

A miracle comes to us when we let go of of the interference that is blocking our awareness to Love’s presence. The interference is our belief that our innocence was lost when we chose to believe in separation. As we allow our mind to quiet and be still, what has always been can return to our awareness. When guilt is gone, we see that only Love is everywhere.

Jesus tells us, “In quietness, see in the miracle a lesson in allowing Cause to have Its Own effects, and doing nothing that would interfere. The miracle comes quietly into the mind that stops an instant and is still. It reaches gently from that quiet time, and from the mind it healed in quiet then, to other minds to share its quietness. And they will join in doing nothing to prevent its radiant extension back into the Mind Which caused all minds to be.” (10:9, 11:1-3)

What understanding comes with the miracle?

As the miracle brings us the awareness of Love’s presence, we see that all is well because we are still safe in God and our dreams have meant nothing. We see that we did not need to fix the dream and make it better; we simply needed to let our hallucinations of separation go. Jesus tells us, “Now is the Son of God at last aware of present Cause and Its benign effects. Now does he understand what he has made is causeless, having no effects at all. He has done nothing. And in seeing this, he understands he never had a need for doing anything, and never did.” (14:1-4)

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Chapter 27: The Healing of the Dream

Section VIII. The “Hero” of the Dream

Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 27, Section VIII. (pages 585-588)

What is the central figure in the dreaming of the world?

This section is bringing to our awareness that, in truth, we are dreaming a dream of being separate from our true Identity. The central figure in this dream is the body. In the dream we identify with the body as what we are — we dream we are the body and when the body dies, we die. When something happens to the body, we think it is happening to us. That is why Jesus says that the body is the “hero” of the dream. He tells us, “There is no dream without [the body,] nor does [the body] exist without the dream in which [the body] were a person to be seen and be believed.” (1:2)

What are we trying to prove when we dream of being a body?

We are trying to prove that we are “autonomous and real.” (2:1) We are trying to be in control and decide things on our own. We are trying to be the decider of what is real and what is not real. Here we see that the purpose of the dream is to try to make it look like we are not the script writer of the dream, but merely the innocent victim of the events of the dream. We are trying to project onto a world outside us what we unconsciously believe about ourselves. In this dream of separation we want to see ourselves as the innocent victim of a guilty world.

Jesus tells us, “The world you see depicts exactly what you thought you did. Except that now you think that what you did is being done to you. The guilt for what you thought is being placed outside yourself, and on a guilty world that dreams your dreams and thinks your thoughts instead of you. [The world] brings its vengeance, not your own. It keeps you narrowly confined within a body, which it punishes because of all the sinful things the body does within its dream. [In this dream story] you have no power to make the body stop its evil deeds because you did not make it, and cannot control its actions nor its purpose nor its fate.” (7:2-7)

How are we to escape from the effects of these dreams?

Jesus wants us to understand that we are experiencing these dreams because we rejected our real Identity and decided to replace It with being separate and alone. He tells us, “No one asleep and dreaming in the world remembers his attack upon himself. No one believes there really was a time when he knew nothing of a body, and could never have conceived this world as real. He would have seen at once that these ideas are one illusion, too ridiculous for anything but to be laughed away. How serious [these bodies] now appear to be! And no one can remember when [bodies] would have met with laughter and with disbelief. We can remember this, if we but look directly at their cause. And we will see the grounds for laughter, not a cause for fear.”  (5:4-10 italics added)

Why is remembering to laugh at dreams so important in our awakening process?

It is when we take them seriously that these dreams of separation hold us in a state of fear. We are being reminded again and again in this Course that the way to freedom is not to take our dreams seriously because they are not true. “Together we can laugh them both away, and understand that time cannot intrude upon eternity. It is a joke to think that time can come to circumvent eternity, which means there is no time.” (6:4-5)

What is the secret to salvation that we have kept from ourselves?

The secret that we are keeping from ourselves is that we are choosing not to listen to the truth but instead are putting our belief in our illusions of separation. He tells us, “How differently will you perceive the world when this is recognized! When you forgive the world your guilt, you will be free of it. Its innocence does not demand your guilt, nor does your guiltlessness rest on its sins. … Now need you but to learn that both of you are innocent or guilty. The one thing that is impossible is that you be unlike each other; that they both be true. This is the only secret yet to learn. And it will be no secret you are healed.” (13:1-3, 6-9)

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Chapter 27: The Healing of the Dream

Section VII. The Dreamer of the Dream

Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 27, Section VII. (pages 581-585)

What is the purpose of suffering to the ego thought system?

To the ego thought system, suffering is salvation. Why? The ego’s basic underlying belief is that we are guilty for choosing to experience separation and trying to be different from the oneness of our Source. Finding this guilt intolerable, we attempt to ‘buy our innocence’ by projecting this guilt onto an outside world. We do this by focusing on the idea that we are suffering at “another’s” hands.

This dream script of suffering at the hands of another is the ego’s chosen method to hide the underlying ego belief that we are guilty to the core (original sin). As long as we hold onto the ego thought system we will be attracted to stories of suffering and thinking that suffering is our salvation.

How long will we hold onto this ‘suffering is salvation’ ego script? We will hold onto the idea of suffering as long as we insist that the source of the suffering is outside of our own split mind.

How do we release ourselves from this repeating cycle of suffering?

Jesus very carefully defines the mistaken ideas that set up the repeating cycle: “The ‘reasoning’ by which the world is made, on which it rests, by which it is maintained, is simply this: ‘You are the cause of what I do. Your presence justifies my wrath, and you exist and think apart from me. While you attack I must be innocent. And what I suffer from is your attack.’ No one who looks upon this ‘reasoning’ exactly as it is could fail to see it does not follow and it makes no sense. Yet it seems sensible, because it looks as if the world were hurting you.” (3:1-6) Seeing that the problem is in our own thinking and not ‘out there’ is seeing the problem where it is.

Jesus then explains that to reverse this repeating cycle of suffering is to let go of condemnation, which is the purpose of the world according to the ego. To free ourselves from suffering we need to let go of the ego’s pattern of projecting guilt onto another to make it look like we are the innocent victim. He says, “The world’s escape from condemnation is a need which those within the world are joined in sharing.” (4:2)

What is the purpose of the world according to the ego?

The purpose of the world is to see a guilty world that is outside of us. By projecting the guilt that is still in our minds, we do not recognize that what we are seeing is coming from our own minds and is not ‘out there.’

Jesus expands on this: “Of one thing you were sure: of all the many causes you perceived as bringing pain and suffering to you, your guilt was not among them. Nor did you in any way request them for yourself. This is how all illusions came about. The one who makes them does not see himself as making them, and their reality does not depend on him. Whatever cause they have is something quite apart from him, and what he sees is separate from his mind. He cannot doubt his dreams’ reality, because he does not see the part he plays in making them and making them seem real.” (7:4-9) By deceiving ourselves into believing the world is outside us, we keep the ego thought system in place.

How do we awaken without fear?

Jesus tells us that as we open to our inner Comforter and Guide, we are brought to a gentler dream that precedes our awakening. With the Holy Spirit as our Guide, we let go of condemnation and blame because we recognize that it is not ‘out there.’ With Holy Spirit we are brought to dreaming of our brother’s innocence instead of seeing him as guilty. We are brought to a happy dream instead of dreams of fear and guilt.

“He brings forgiving dreams, in which the choice is not who is the murderer and who shall be the victim. In the dreams He brings there is no murder and there is no death. The dream of guilt is fading from your sight, although your eyes are closed. A smile has come to lighten up your sleeping face. The sleep is peaceful now, for these are happy dreams.” (14:4-8) So here we see that the happy dream is dreaming of our brother’s innocence instead of seeing him as guilty.

How does Jesus specifically describe the happy dream?

In the happy dream, we have deep appreciation for the gifts each brother brings with him as we see his innocence. Jesus tells us: “Dream softly of your sinless brother, who unites with you in holy innocence. And from this dream the Lord of Heaven will Himself awaken His beloved Son. Dream of your brother’s kindnesses instead of dwelling in your dreams on his mistakes. Select his thoughtfulness to dream about instead of counting up the hurts he gave. Forgive him his illusions, and give thanks to him for all the helpfulness he gave. And do not brush aside his many gifts because he is not perfect in your dreams. He represents his Father, Whom you see as offering both life and death to you.” (15:1-7)

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Chapter 27: The Healing of the Dream

Section VI. The Witnesses to Sin

Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 27, Section VI. (pages 579-581)

What makes the body appear to be real to us?

Both pain and pleasure make the body appear to be real to us. They draw us deeply into the dream and we experience it as ‘reality’ like a thriller movie draws us in to experience the fear and dread of ‘future’ events of death and destruction written in the movie story. As we engross ourselves in the movie, we lose ourselves in it. As we identify with the actors in the movie, we feel the emotions of fear and pain along with the actors. We feel the exhilaration and thrill at overcoming problems and threats that come one right after the other as the actors in the movie surmount all obstacles to ‘win’ in the end. What we ‘win’ with the body dream is the experience of separation from our true Identity.

The body is like the DVD we put in our DVD player. Through the instrument of the body (DVD) we experience a ‘life’ of both pleasure and pain and it seems to be very real to us while we are going through the experience. In this body experience, the dream has a beginning, where we dream of being born and an end, where we dream of dying. In this dream, both birth and death and all the pleasure and pain we experience in between seem very real to us. This is what we wanted to experience when we played the ‘body DVD’ experience.

We are now learning that the ‘body life’ that we experience is not real but just a dream and is not really true. We are learning that we were not really born as a separate body and we cannot die because we still are eternal Spirit. We are still one with our Father in Heaven. We still are the peace and joy that is inherent in Love, which is the truth about us. In fact, the Course reminds us that we remain in Heaven while dreaming we are on a distant shore having all these experiences of fear, guilt and pain. While we want these dreams of individuality, imitation and lack, we call it pleasure.

To the ego, what is the cost of pleasure?

The ego thought system is the writer of the script of these dreams of being separate from our Source. Inherent within the ego thought system is the core belief of our guilt for choosing to experience separation from our Father, our Source. Inherent in all the stories of the ego’s DVD’s is the projection of this inherent guilt (original sin) onto the other actors in the dream to try to displace the uncomfortable and intolerable feeling of unworthiness and guilt. This is why the ego’s DVD’s are filled with stories of being the innocent victim of the guilty ones we see as outside us. This is why, to the ego, seeing guilt is pleasure and seeing innocence is pain.

Jesus explains how the ego thought system works: “Sin (belief in separation) shifts from pain to pleasure, and again to pain. For either witness is the same, and carries but one message. ‘You are here, within this body, and you can be hurt. You can have pleasure too, but only at the cost of pain.’ …Sin’s witnesses hear but the call of death.” (2:1-3, 11)

What do the miracles we receive from our true Self witness to?

It is helpful to understand that we are not stuck with the ego’s DVD of separation from our Father. It is helpful to understand that we can choose once again, and this time with the Holy Spirit’s help. We can choose Holy Spirit’s forgiving DVD, which is still a dream but wakes us up from the dream.

The Holy Spirit uses the body in a different way. It brings witness to the fact that the body is not real. It brings witness to the truth of oneness beyond the DVD body dream of separation. The miracle the Holy Spirit brings reveals the Light of Love that lies beyond every body.

What are the many ways a call for healing is heard by the Holy Spirit?

Jesus explains it this way: “Yet to the One Who sends forth miracles to bless the world, a tiny stab of pain, a little worldly pleasure, and the throes of death itself are but a single sound; a call for healing, and a plaintive cry for help within a world of misery. It is their sameness that the miracle attest. It is their sameness that [the miracle] proves. The laws that call [the cries for help and healing] different are dissolved, and shown as powerless. The purpose of a miracle is to accomplish this. And God Himself has guaranteed the strength of miracles for what they witness to.” (6:6-11 italics added)

Here we learn through the Holy Spirit to recognize “a tiny stab of pain, a little worldly pleasure, and the throes of death itself” for what they are — calls for help and not a call for projecting guilt that the ego would ask for. We are learning to recognize that these calls can only be answered by the Holy Spirit, our true Self. We are learning what teacher to turn to as we respond to the different circumstances that the dream of separate bodies present to us.

What replaces all sin and suffering?

In paragraph 8 we see the results of our willingness to join with the Holy Spirit’s replacement for the ego’s DVD of separation from your true Identity: ” The resurrection of the world awaits your healing and your happiness, that you may demonstrate the healing of the world. The holy instant will replace all sin (belief in separation) if you but carry its effects with you. And no one will elect to suffer [any] more. What better function could you serve than this? Be healed that you may heal, and suffer not the laws of [belief in separation] to be applied to you. And truth will be revealed to you who chose to let Love’s symbols take the place of sin.” (8:1-6)

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Chapter 27: The Healing of the Dream

Section V. The Healing Example

Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 27, Section V. (pages 576-579)

How do we heal?

We heal by allowing our own mind to be healed by the Holy Spirit. As we accept the healing of our own thoughts of separation, healing just naturally extends to other minds. As the Teacher of Love teaches us to see past the ego’s barriers to Love, we develop the habit of accepting Love’s oneness and extending the truth of Love to every brother. We see that every brother is our one Self. Jesus tells us, “The miracle extends without your help, but you are needed that it can begin. Accept the miracle of healing, and it will go forth because of what it is. It is its nature to extend itself the instant it is born.” (1:2-4)

What is required for a healing?

Jesus tells us that “…if you are afraid of healing, then it cannot come through you. The only thing that is required for a healing is a lack of fear. The fearful are not healed, and cannot heal. (2:7-10)

What are we afraid of? We are afraid of losing our self-identity. We are afraid of losing the stories of separation we have made. We are afraid of truly joining with the one Mind of our Father because, when we take our false ideas to the Light of God, what is not true disappears from our sight. Loving without attack means accepting and extending Love’s oneness without trying to make its opposite — separation — real.

The good news is that the Holy Spirit needs only an instant of our willingness. Jesus tells us: “This does not mean the conflict must be gone forever from your mind to heal. For if it were, there were no need for healing then. But it does mean, if only for an instant, you love without attack. An instant is sufficient. Miracles wait not on time.” (2:10-14 italics added)

What does the holy instant carry with it?

The holy instant brings with it the miracle of changed perception. It brings the feeling of peace, comfort, well-being and the awareness that dreams of attack and lack of love are not what is eternally real about ourselves and every brother.

Jesus tells us: “What stands apart from you, when you accept the blessing that the holy instant brings? Be not afraid of blessing, for the One Who blesses you loves all the world, and leaves nothing within the world that could be feared.  …The holy instant’s radiance will light your eyes, and give them sight to see beyond all suffering and see Christ’s face instead. Healing replaces suffering. Who looks on one cannot perceive the other, for they cannot both be there. And what you see the world will witness, and will witness to.” (4:4-5, 6:5-8)

What is the true nature of every problem?

The truth is, every problem that we perceive in the world is not ‘out there.’ It is coming from our own confused and separated mind. In God there are no problems and we are eternally in the Mind of God right now, in the eternal present. When we are in a state of mind that perceives problems, we are hallucinating what is not there in truth. We are seeing through the ego eyes of separation, which blocks out the truth of Where we truly are — in Love, as Love.

Jesus explains it this way: “Problems are not specific but they take specific forms, and these specific shapes make up the world. And no one understands the nature of his problem. If he did, it would be there no more for him to see. Its very nature is that it is not. And thus, while he perceives it he can not perceive it as it is.” (8:1-5)

How do we deal with problems if we can not perceive them as they are?

Jesus answers this by helping us see that we cannot solve problems within the box of the ego thought system. Within the ego thought system’s split mind, fixing one problem just leads to an endless list of problem after problem until we come to a turning point. We then are willing to hand over every problem to the Holy Spirit, who brings us healed perception. Every healing ultimately leads us from perceiving separation to the return to oneness, which alone is the truth of What and Where we are.

In paragraph 10 we are told: “Leave, then, the transfer of your learning to the One Who really understands [healing’s] laws, and Who will guarantee that they remain unviolated and unlimited. Your part is merely to apply what He has taught you to yourself, and He will do the rest.” (10:1-2)

The Holy Spirit knows that the differences we see are not real. He knows that we are hallucinating a constantly changing world of separation that is not there in truth. As we learn to consistently step back from every perceived problem and open our minds to the peaceful Light of the Holy Spirit, we receive the blessings that the holy instant brings to our confused mind. “What occurred within the instant that Love entered in without attack will stay with you forever. Your healing will be one of its [Love’s] effects, as will your brother’s [healing]. Everywhere you go, will you behold [Love’s] multiplied effects.” (11:4-6)

We heal as our minds are healed. As we accept the holy instant, it replaces every perceived problem and the miracle of healing extends without our help. “God thanks you for your healing, for He knows it is a gift of Love unto His Son, and therefore is it given unto Him.” (11:9)

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Chapter 27: The Healing of the Dream

Section IV. The Quiet Answer

Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 27, Section IV. (pages 574-576)

How is every problem resolved?

Jesus points to our state of mind as the reason we appear to have problems. As long as we join with ego thoughts that project a world of separate bodies we are in a state of mind that conflicts with the peaceful and joyful beingness of our true Self.

He tells us, “…it must also be that in your state of mind solution is impossible. Therefore, God must have given you a way of reaching to another state of mind in which the answer is already there. Such is the holy instant. It is here that all your problems should be brought and left. Here they belong, for here their answer is.” (2:2-6 italics added)

To accept the holy instant, we must allow our mind to quiet and enter a state of peace. We must leave an open space in which the Holy Spirit can enter. “In quietness are all things answered, and is every problem quietly resolved.” (1:1)

What is the question the world always asks and how does the ego answer?

Jesus makes it clear how the ego thought system keeps us bouncing around again and again within its system of deception. In truth we are the same eternal Spirit in the universal Mind of Love. He explains how the ego answers all our questions: “The world asks but one question. It is this: ‘Of these illusions, which of them is true? Which ones establish peace and offer joy? And which can bring escape from all the pain of which this world is made?’ Whatever form the question takes, its purpose is the same. It asks but to establish sin is real, and answers in the form of preference.” (4:4-9)

By this answer the ego side-steps the truth and keeps us mired within the limits of continued self-deception. Jesus says, “Thus is all questioning within the world a form of propaganda for itself. Just as the body’s witnesses are but the senses from within itself, so are the answers to the questions of the world contained within the questions that are asked.” (5:3-4)

When is a question honestly asked?

In this section we are learning that a question is honestly asked only within the holy-instant. Jesus explains: “The holy instant is the interval in which the mind is still enough to hear an answer that is not entailed within the question asked. It offers something new and different from the question. …Therefore, attempt to solve no problems in a world from which the answer has been barred. …In the holy instant, you can bring the question to the answer, and receive the answer that was made for you.” (6:9-10, 7:1, 5 italics added)

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Chapter 27: The Healing of the Dream

Section III. Beyond All Symbols

Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 27, Section III. (pages 572-574)

Why does God (all Power) have no opposite?

God is all Power, being All That is. Here we learn that all Power (God) does not oppose what He knows does not exist. Concepts that oppose the Truth are merely false concepts that are meaningless. Why would God (all Power) oppose meaningless ideas that are really nothing? That is why in paragraph one it says, “Power is unopposed, to be Itself. No weakness (false thought or idea) can intrude upon It without changing It into something It is not. To weaken is to limit, and impose an opposite that contradicts the concept that it attacks.” (1:5-7)

In the Introduction to the Course we are told: “The opposite of Love is fear, but what is all-encompassing can have no opposite. This course can therefore be summed up very simply in this way: Nothing real can be threatened. Nothing unreal exists. Herein lies the peace of God.” (T-1.Intro.1:8, 2:1-4)

Why is our picture of our brother meaningless?

Our picture of our brother is meaningless because God has no opposite. There is no ‘other’ that is different or separate from God. Picturing our brother as a separate body is a symbol of a thought that is trying to conflict with God’s oneness, which in truth, could never be. This means that we are perceiving nothing instead of reality. That is why Jesus tells us: “The picture of your brother that you see is wholly absent and has never been. Let, then, the empty space it occupies be recognized as vacant, and the time devoted to its seeing be perceived as idly spent, a time unoccupied.” (3:7-8)

What happens when we let go of trying to fill emptiness with symbols of separation from God?

As we are willing to recognize that what we are seeing (body images that conflict with or oppose God’s formless oneness) is not really there, we clear a space in our confused minds for the Light of truth to enter. Jesus explains it this way: “For what you leave as vacant God will fill, and where He is there must the truth abide. Unweakened power, with no opposite, is what Creation is. For this there are no symbols. Nothing points beyond the truth, for what can stand for more than everything?” (4:3-6)

Here we are brought to a state of mind where we recognize that all “worldly” symbols of separate forms are meaningless. “Reality is ultimately known without a form, unpictured and unseen.” (5:2) God is formless Love that is All there Is. There is nothing “else.” When we let go of what is not real, what is Real returns to our mind. Another way to say this is that when we allow the barriers to Love to be lifted by our true Self, we know that Love is All. We know that there is nothing ‘else.’

Why is forgiveness the Holy Spirit’s teaching aid?

Because we have gotten lost in dreams that are not true, our Father has provided an inner Teacher — the Holy Spirit — to teach us the difference between the false and the true. Our inner Teacher uses the tool of forgiveness to lead us out of illusions of separation until the tool is no longer necessary. Forgiveness is the Holy Spirit’s bridge of return to Love.

Because projection of guilt is the ego’s tool to make a world of differences appear to be real to us, the Holy Spirit teaches us to let go of guilt and see innocence instead. Letting go of guilt is what forgiveness is, not because guilt is real, but because only Love is real and what is not real never happened in truth.

What happens when we follow Holy Spirit’s bridge of return to Love?

Jesus answers this with the following: “Forgiveness vanishes and symbols fade, and nothing that the eyes have ever seen or ears have heard remains to be perceived. A Power wholly limitless has come, not to destroy, but to receive Its Own. There is no choice of function anywhere. The choice you fear to lose you never had. …Give welcome to the Power beyond forgiveness, and beyond the world of symbols and of limitations. He would merely be, and so He merely Is.” (7:1-4, 8-9)

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Chapter 27: The Healing of the Dream

Section II. The Fear of Healing

Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 27, Section II. (pages 568-572)

Why is healing frightening?

Let us start with remembering that all true healing is mind healing. Previously the Course has brought to our attention that this world of separate bodies is experienced as a result of a wish for specialness and individuality. In order to experience specialness we had to put up a barrier to being aware of God’s oneness. Because we get what we wish for, we were no longer aware of Love’s presence. We consequently thought that we had destroyed God and felt guilty. The guilt that came when we believed this false story was intolerable and so the ego false mind made up a story of hurling the guilt outside of our mind onto a perceived world that is separate from us.

In the last section we learned that, in order to project guilt, we secretly wished to be unfairly treated so that we could appear to be the innocent victims of the guilty ones we now saw as separate from us. The ego’s battle cry is always: “Behold me, brother, at your hand I die.” (T-27.I.4:6) In section II we see that we are afraid to wake up from this nightmare dream of victimhood and attack because we are afraid of facing the guilt that we think is ours. Because of the guilt we are still hanging on to, we would still rather continue to project the guilt onto the guilty ones we think of as outside our mind.

This is why Jesus tells us, “Is healing frightening? To many, yes. For accusation is a bar to Love and damaged bodies are accusers. [These accusations] stand firmly in the way of trust and peace, proclaiming that the frail can have no trust and that the damaged have no grounds for peace. Who has been injured by his brother, and could love and trust him still?” (1:1-5)

Why is it difficult for the unhealed mind to pardon?

The unhealed mind thinks that to pardon would be unfair. Jesus explains it this way: “To witness sin and yet forgive it is a paradox that reason cannot see. For it maintains what has been done to you deserves no pardon. And by giving [pardon], you grant your brother mercy but retain the proof he is not really innocent. The sick remain accusers. They cannot forgive their brothers and themselves as well. For no one in whom true forgiveness rests can suffer. He holds not the proof of sin before his brother’s eyes. And thus he must have overlooked [sin] and removed it from his own [eyes]. Forgiveness cannot be for one and not the other. Who forgives is healed.” (3:1-10)

Why is suffering removed with true forgiveness?

When we no longer need to be the innocent victim of the guilty ones we see as outside us, we remove the need to make up accusing stories of suffering at another’s hand. We let go of attack and defense. As we let go of the perceived need to project guilt, we heal and are healed. We let the veil be lifted to see the face of Christ.  “Forgiveness is not real unless it brings a healing to your brother and yourself. You must attest his sins have no effect on you to demonstrate they are not real. …In their undoing lies the proof that they are merely errors. Let yourself be healed that you may be forgiving, offering salvation to your brother and yourself.” (4:1-2, 6-7)

What does a miracle of healing prove?

A miracle of healing proves that your brother is innocent and that your mind is healed. You and your brother are both still as God created you. Jesus tells us, “Your body can be the means to teach that it has never suffered pain because of him. And in its healing can it offer him mute testimony of his innocence. It is this testimony that can speak with power greater than a thousand tongues. For here is his forgiveness proved to him.” (5:6-9)

Miracles prove that in Reality there is no suffering, no pain and no death. There is no loss. “This is the law the miracle obeys; that healing sees no specialness at all. It does not come from pity but from Love. And Love would prove all suffering is but a vain imagining, a foolish wish with no effects. Your health is a result of your desire to see your brother with no blood upon his hands, nor guilt upon his heart made heavy with the proof of sin. And what you wish is given you to see.” (7:4-8)

How is correction different between the Holy Spirit and the ego?

Correction in the ego mind means to find guilt in another to relieve itself of guilt. Correction to the Holy Spirit is to pardon guilt and forgive or let it go instead of accuse. The ego corrects in order to maintain its perception of separation and the Holy Spirit corrects in order to see minds as one in perfect innocence.

Jesus tells us, “Correction must be left to One Who knows correction and forgiveness are the same. With half a mind this is not understood. Leave, then, correction to the Mind that is united, functioning as one because it is not split in purpose, and conceives a single function as its only one. …His single purpose unifies the halves of you that you perceive as separate. And each forgives the other, that he may accept his other half as part of him.” (16:1-3, 6-7)

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Chapter 27: The Healing of the Dream

Section I. The Picture of Crucifixion

Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 27, Section I. (pages 565-568)

How does the ego thought system try to combine attack and innocence?

The ego’s goal is to make you think you are an innocent victim in a guilty world that you perceive as outside of you. The ego’s stories focus on the ideas that you have been unfairly treated by ‘others’ and are a victim of the guilty world you see. To see examples of victimhood stories, just put on the news. The ‘news’ the ego is interested in hearing is all the victim and guilt stories it sees are going on in this world of separated bodies.

In this section we learn that when we join with the ego’s insane reasoning, we unconsciously crucify ourselves (attack our body) in order to make ourselves innocent victims of the guilty ones we see as ‘outside’ ourselves. Jesus explains how the ego’s insane thinking works: “But every pain you suffer do you see as proof that he is guilty of attack. Thus would you make yourself to be the sign that he has lost his innocence, and need but look on you to realize that he has been condemned. And what to you has been unfair will come to him in righteousness. The unjust vengeance that you suffer now belongs to him, and when it rests on him are you set free.” (2:2-5)

What is the picture of crucifixion the ego holds before our brother’s eyes?

In this section, the Course helps us understand just how insane the ego thought system of separation really is. Here we see that when we join with the ego thought system, we crucify ourselves in order to make it look like the guilt lies somewhere else instead of in our own minds.

Jesus tells us, “Whenever you consent to suffer pain, to be deprived, unfairly treated or in need of anything, you but accuse your brother of attack upon God’s Son. You hold a picture of your crucifixion before his eyes, that he may see his sins are writ in Heaven in your blood and death, and go before him, closing off the gate and damning him to hell.” (3:1-2)

What does sickness witness to according to the ego’s plan to get rid of guilt?

Within the ego thought system, sickness is cherished and loved for the guilt that it justifiably hurls on those in the guilty world it sees as outside of its own mind. Jesus tells us, “A sick and suffering you but represents your brother’s guilt; the witness that you send lest he forget the injuries he gave, from which you swear he never will escape. This sick and sorry picture you accept, if only it can serve to punish him.” (4:3-4)

What is the picture the Holy Spirit brings to our minds?

The ego is always looking to hurl guilt. Guilt is the ego’s savior because it keeps the ego intact. The Holy Spirit, on the other hand, always brings us the picture of innocence. The following explains the healing motivation behind what the Holy Spirit brings to us:

“The Holy Spirit offers you, to give to him, a picture of yourself in which there is no pain and no reproach at all. And what was martyred to his guilt becomes the perfect witness to his innocence.” (3:5-6)  “It witnesses to the eternal truth that you cannot be hurt, and points beyond itself to both your innocence and his. …Here is the proof that he has never sinned; that nothing which his madness bid him do was ever done, or ever had effects of any kind.” (5:4,7)

What does your healing prove?

Jesus helps us understand in paragraph 6 that to the ego, the purpose of the world of bodies is to prove that guilt is real. Making the body real in our mind becomes a witness that we succeeded in separating from formless Love and therefore we are guilty. To reverse this thinking, Jesus tells us, “Your healing is [your brothers’] comfort and his health because it proves illusions are not true.” (6:2)

“Your function is to show your brother [that] sin can have no cause. How futile must it be to see yourself a picture of the proof that what your function is can never be! The Holy Spirit’s picture changes not the body into something it is not. It only takes away from it all signs of accusation and of blamefulness. Pictured without a purpose, [the body] is seen as neither sick nor well, nor bad nor good. No grounds are offered that [the body] may be judged in any way at all.” (9:1-6)

What is the ego’s strongest witness to the strange belief that sin and death are real?

The ego’s stories of sickness, frailty and death are the ego’s chosen friends to prove that separation and death are real. Jesus explains the train of thought that motivates these stories of the body’s guilt, and therefore deserving of vulnerability, weakness, sickness and eventually even death:

“The sick have reason for each one of their unnatural desires and strange needs. For who could live a life so soon cut short and not esteem the worth of passing joys? What pleasures could there be that will endure? Are not the frail entitled to believe that every stolen scrap of pleasure is their righteous payment for their little lives? Their death will pay the price for all of them, if they enjoy their benefits or not. The end of life must come, whatever way that life be spent. And so take pleasure in the quickly passing and ephemeral.” (7:2-8)

When is Heaven free to be remembered?

As we let go of the ego’s purpose for the body, an opening is made for the Holy Spirit’s purpose of fostering the return of seeing only innocence. Jesus tells us in paragraph 10: “Let [the body] have healing as its purpose. Then will it send forth the message it received, and by its health and loveliness proclaim the truth and value that it represents. Let it receive the power to represent an endless life, forever unattacked. And to your brother let its message be, “Behold me, brother, at your hand I live.” (10:4-7)

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Chapter 26: The Transition

Section X. The End of Injustice

Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 26, Section X. (pages 562-564)

What must be undone in order to realize the Presence of God the Father and the Son?

We must be willing to let confused perception to be undone by the Holy Spirit. The confused perception occurs is when: “…you have a differential view of when attack is justified, and when you think it is unfair and not to be allowed. When you perceive [attack] as unfair, you think that a response of anger now is just. And thus you see what is the same as different.” (1:2-4)

When we are seeing something ‘other’ than the Presence of God and His Son, we are looking through the eyes of the ego. We are perceiving attack on the truth of God the Father and the Son. Jesus gives us a correction in our thinking when he says, “Some [forms of attack or seeing separation] are given meaning and perceived as sensible. And only some are seen as meaningless. And this denies the fact that all are senseless, equally without a cause or consequence, and cannot have effects of any kind.” (2:4-6)

When we see attack (injustice) and make it real, this perception becomes a veil that obscures awareness of the truth — the face of Christ and the memory of God. Jesus tells us, “Their Presence is obscured by any veil that stands between Their shining innocence, and your awareness that it is your own and equally belongs to every living thing along with you. God limits not. And what is limited cannot be Heaven. So it must be hell.” (2:7-10)

In the Workbook for Students, Lesson 11 we learn that our meaningless thoughts are showing us a meaningless world. We learn that our thoughts of separation determine the world we see. As we are willing to give up these meaningless attack thoughts, the Presence of God the Father and the Son returns to our mind.

Why does Jesus say that unfairness and attack are the same mistake?

When we sacrifice the truth, we are being unfair to ourselves. Sacrificing the truth comes with joining with the ego. In the ego thought system, the pain of sacrificing the truth of God the Father and His Son is projected out and now we experience this unfairness is being done to us by something that we believe lies outside our minds.

To help undo this insane and impossible thinking, Jesus tells us, “You cannot be unfairly treated. The belief you are [unfairly treated] is but another form of the idea you are deprived by someone not yourself. Projection of the cause of sacrifice is at the root of everything perceived to be unfair and not your just deserts. Yet it is you who ask this of yourself, in deep injustice to the Son of God. You have no enemy except yourself, and you are enemy indeed to him because you do not know him as yourself. What could be more unjust than that [your brother] be deprived of what he is, denied the right to be himself, and asked to sacrifice his Father’s Love and yours as not his due?” (3:2-7)

Why is it a mistake to perceive ourselves as unfairly treated?

The guilt we feel that comes with believing in separation is intolerable. The automatic ego response is to look for and find the guilt somewhere else, in anyone else but ourselves. The ego mind thinks that this projection of guilt relieves us of the guilt, but in fact, it only reinforces our experience of vulnerability and pain.

Jesus explains it this way: “In [the ego’s] view you seek to find an innocence that is not Theirs [God and His Son] but yours alone, and at the cost of someone else’s guilt. Can innocence be purchased by the giving of your guilt to someone else? And is it innocence that your attack on him attempts to get? Is it not retribution for your own attack upon the Son of God you seek? Is it not safer to believe that you are innocent of this, and victimized despite your innocence? Whatever way the game of guilt is played, there must be loss. Someone must lose his innocence that someone else can take it from him, making it his own.” (4:1-8) Here we see that seeing guilt in another is simply another attack on ourselves. Until we give it up, we will continue to make the mistake of seeing ourselves as being unfairly treated.

How does the Holy Spirit reverse this mistaken purpose of seeing guilt in others?

In paragraph 5 the answer to this question is very simple: “The Holy Sprit’s purpose is to let the Presence of your holy Guests [God the Father and His Son] be known to you. And to this purpose nothing can be added, for the world is purposeless except for this. …And each unfairness that the world appears to lay upon you, you have laid on it by rendering it purposeless, without the function that the Holy Spirit sees. And simple justice has been thus denied to every living thing upon the earth.” (5:4-5,7-8)

So here we see that the only purpose for the world now is to allow the Presence of Love and Love’s extension — the Father and His Son — be known to us. Joined with the Holy Spirit, this is the only real meaning that is important in our ‘life.’

What does Jesus tell us to remember when we see injustice anywhere?

“By this do I deny the Presence of the Father and the Son. And I would rather know of Them than see injustice, which Their Presence shines away.” (6:6-7)

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Chapter 26: The Transition

Section IX. For They Have Come

Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 26, Section IX. (pages 560-562)

How are we to look on every brother?

We are to remember that God is with him. We are to see his holiness so that we may see our own holiness. Jesus tells us, “Regard him gently. Look with loving eyes on him who carries Christ within him, that you may behold his glory and rejoice that Heaven is not separate from you.” (1:5-6) When we are willing to see that he is still as pure and innocent as God created him, our brother becomes our savior and the means by which we waken from the dream of separation. As we see his innocence, we find our own.

What are the benefits of seeing the face of Christ in every brother?

When we see the face of Christ in every brother, we are forgiving ourselves for all our sins (or thoughts that are unlike God’s thoughts). The memory of God returns to our tortured mind. Peace and joy returns to stay at last. “The ground whereon you stand is holy ground because of Them (the face of Christ and the memory of God) Who, standing there with you, have blessed [the holy ground where you stand] with Their innocence and peace.” (2:4)

As we allow the face of Christ and the memory of God to return to our mind, “…The incomplete is made complete again, and Heaven’s joy has been increased because what is its own has been restored to it. The bloodied earth is cleansed, and the insane have shed their garments of insanity to join Them on the ground whereon you stand.” (4:5-6)

What is the holiest of all the spots on earth?

The following is one of the most meaningful, the most famous and most quoted sentences in A Course in Miracles: “The holiest of all the spots on earth is where an ancient hatred has become a present love.” (6:1)

We may struggle to see the face of Christ in every brother because the idea seems new to us, but when we actually practice it, we immediately receive the blessing that we have extended. We help both our brothers and ourselves to return to the memory of God. We become a savior to the world and we are saved. “What hatred has released to love becomes the brightest light in Heaven’s radiance. And all the lights in Heaven brighter grow, in gratitude for what has been restored.” (6:5-6)

When is the Holy Spirit’s purpose done?

As we continue to practice letting the memory of God return by seeing the face of Christ in everyone instead of separation, “…They give thanks that They are welcome made at last. Where stood a cross stands now the risen Christ, and ancient scars are healed within His sight.” (8:3-4)

Our willingness to return to what our Father knows about us brings the truth of the risen Christ to our minds. The memory of God returns. Jesus tells us, “In gentle gratitude do God the Father and the Son return to what is Theirs, and will forever be. Now is the Holy Spirit’s purpose done. For They [the face of Christ and memory of God] have come! For They have come at last!” (8:6-9 italics added)

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Chapter 26: The Transition

Section VIII. The Immediacy of Salvation

Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 26, Section VIII. (pages 558-560)

What makes trust impossible?

In this section we learn that the illusions of time and space are ploys in the ego thought system to make it appear that separation has been accomplished and is happening now. In earlier chapters it is emphasized that projection makes perception. The guilt we feel that goes along with choosing to see separation from Love’s oneness gets projected onto a screen we now see as a world that is outside of our thoughts. This ego trick of projection makes it look like what are really our thoughts are ‘out there’ and that we have nothing to do with what we are seeing. The purpose of projection (what we see through the body’s eyes) is to make it look like we are the face of innocence and the guilt we are holding onto in our mind lies in ‘others,’ who we now see as outside us. This projection of guilt makes trusting the true Reality of our brothers impossible.

Jesus points out here that we use the ego’s false mental constructs of time and space to reinforce the story that it takes time before we receive the benefits of our ‘forgiveness.’ He tells us, “The one remaining problem that you have is that you see an interval between the time when you forgive, and will receive the benefits of trusting in your brother. This but reflects the little you would keep between you and your brother, that you and he might be a little separate.” (1:1-2)

True forgiveness brings the experience of seeing past our projections of guilt to the true Reality of our brother, which is in the eternal present. The truth is that every brother is eternal Love NOW and forever. True forgiveness brings us to know that nothing has really happened to change God’s one Son. The ego’s false forgiveness makes it look like it is dangerous to forgive because our brother is still guilty. Here trust is impossible.

How does our belief in time and space support our belief in separation?

If we let go of our belief in time and space, we could no longer hold onto the idea that we are separate and alone. Time and space are the opposite of eternity, where all is One in the eternal, changeless present. There is no space and time in God, where we are all joined as one now.

Here Jesus informs us that we are afraid of salvation because that would remove the false image of space that we ‘now’ see between ourselves and ‘everyone else.’ He tells us, “If you would keep a little space between you and your brother still, you then would want a little time in which forgiveness is withheld a little while.” (3:8)

Here we see that we use the illusion of time to hold off realizing that we are joined as one now. If we accepted that we are one now and for eternity, there is no need for the belief in a future and a past. We would laugh at this crazy concept instead of taking the idea of time seriously. Jesus tells us, “Belief in sin [separation] arouses fear, and like its cause, is looking forward, looking back, but overlooking what is here and now.” (5:5)

Why is a miracle now?

Let us remember that a miracle is opening to and receiving the truth. It is receiving a correction in our perception. We are reminded that the miracle is always there in our minds, waiting for our willingness to receive it. That is why Jesus tells us, “For a miracle is now. It stands already here, in present grace, within the only interval of time that sin and fear have overlooked, but which is all there is to time.” (5:8-9) As we are willing to receive the truth that everyone is already joined as one in the one Mind of Love, we will see a new purpose for every relationship — to see the present truth of our oneness in Love.

Why does Jesus say that future happiness has no meaning?

In lesson 103 Jesus tells us that “God, being Love, is also happiness. Happiness is an attribute of Love. [Happiness] cannot be apart from [Love]. Nor can [happiness] be experienced where Love is not. Love has no limits, being everywhere. And therefore joy is everywhere as well.” (W-pI.103.1-3)

If God is happiness and God is eternal and we are one with God right now, happiness could not be in the future. This is why Jesus tells us in paragraph 9: “Be not content with future happiness. It has no meaning, and is not your just reward. For you have cause for freedom now. …Look not to time, but to the little space between you still [separation], to be delivered from. And do not let it be disguised as time, and so preserved because its form is changed and what it is cannot be recognized. The Holy Spirit’s purpose now is yours. Should not His happiness be yours as well?” (9:1-3, 7-10 italics added)

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Chapter 26: The Transition

Section VII. The Laws of Healing

Read A Course in Miracles, Chapter 26, Section VII. (pages 553-558)

Where does all sickness come from?

In paragraph two Jesus reminds us that sickness comes from what we are believing in —  from our belief in being separate from God, our Source. When we forgive, or let go of this false belief in being separate from God, the sickness falls away because our experience of sickness comes only from our belief in separation and nowhere else.

The ego thought system brings with it the idea that sickness comes from some cause in the outside world that we see through the body’s eyes. The ego belief system denies the fact that the effects we see in the world always come from whose hand we are joining with, the ego’s or the Holy Spirit’s. We have made separation real in our minds and it is there, in our minds, that all healing lies.

What does guilt ask for?

We may not realize it but tied with seeing guilt anywhere comes the call for punishment. In the ego’s world, guilt comes with the desire to see separation instead of God’s oneness. Jesus tells us here: “Guilt asks for punishment, and its request is granted. Not in truth, but in the world of shadows and illusions built on sin.” (3:1-2)

We may wonder why we punish ourselves with pain, lack and loss of every kind in our dream of separation from God. Jesus answers this question very simply and clearly. We hate the guilt we feel that comes with our belief in separation, so when we make the world we see real, we are joining with the ego’s call for punishment which, to its thinking, is justified. The self-hatred that lies beneath the belief in separation demands that the story of separation include sickness, scarcity and death.

Where does God’s answer lie?

God places in our mind the answer to all our experience of pain, sickness and death. As long as we remain closed-minded about the fact that separation is not real, we will not hear God’s answer. As long as we insist that our world of separation is real, so long will our delusions of reality appear to be real to us.

We are learning that we cannot keep one illusion by preferring one illusion over another. We must come to the truth that all illusions are equally unreal. When we are willing, the Holy Spirit brings to our mind a thought reversal, showing us that differences of any kind could never be real and that only God’s oneness is real. We are told, “Illusions are illusions and are false. Your preference gives them no reality. Not one is true in any way, and all [illusions] must yield with equal ease to what God gave as answer to them all. God’s Will is one. And any wish that seems to go against His Will has no foundation in the truth.” (6:7-11)

What brings joy to every aspect of God’s Son?

It is becoming clear that the cause of all our suffering comes from the wish to be separate and apart. Now we know that our only meaningful purpose is to let this wish to see separation go and be undone for us. This release of the belief in separation is called forgiveness. “Forgiveness is the only function here, and serves to bring the joy this world denies to every aspect of God’s Son where sin was thought to rule. (8:5)

What are we forgiving? Our belief in bodies, which has become the vehicle for our wish to be separate and alone. As we become willing to see past bodies to the one Light of God we all have and are, joy replaces the sorrow and anxiety we experienced with our belief in separate bodies.

What does salvation ask of us?

Salvation asks that “a little wish that what is true be true; a little willingness to overlook what is not there; a little sigh that speaks for Heaven as a preference to this world that death and desolation seem to rule. In joyous answer will creation rise within you, to replace the world you see with Heaven, wholly perfect and complete. What is forgiveness but a willingness that truth be true?” (10:1-3) As we become willing to see as our Creator sees, we receive salvation. We awaken from the lie of separation and death of God.

What is the Will of God?

Our Creator created us as one with Him. Our Creator has given us all of Himself and that means there are no differences between us. We are united as one eternally because we are in God’s Mind, which is One.

Early in the Text we are told that we are an idea in the Mind of God. This means that we cannot leave our Source. We are still the idea of Love in the Mind of Love, no matter what false ideas we dream up. In the lessons we are told to tell ourselves: “God is but Love and therefore so am I.” We are returning to the truth that we all are all the same Love and Love cannot be divided up or be different from what all of Love is. Because we are all in God, we share equally all of what God is because Love is sharing All with All That is. This sharing of God’s Identity is the Will of God.

What is the error that needs to be corrected?

The error is the belief that ideas can leave their source. Because God is our Source, we cannot be different from God and we cannot leave God. Jesus tells us, “God wills you learn what always has been true: That He created you as part of Him, and this must still be true because ideas leave not their source. Such is creation’s law; that each idea the mind conceives but adds to its abundance, never takes away. This is as true of what is idly wished as what is truly willed, because the mind can wish to be deceived, but cannot make it be what it is not. And to believe ideas can leave their source is to invite illusions to be true, without success. For never will success be possible in trying to deceive the Son of God.” (13:2-6 italics added)

We deceived ourselves into thinking that we could leave God’s oneness. We have dreamed up a world of separate bodies that makes it look like we have left our Source, but we are now learning that this can never really happen in truth. We are still safe in the Mind of God and have never left. Our dreams of leaving our Source mean nothing and are nowhere.

What happens when we open our minds to the miracle of correction?

As we open our minds to be corrected, the truth will return because “the truth is in your memory.” (16:1) As we become more and more aware of our oneness, we more easily see past the differences seen by the body’s eyes. We are able to recognize the one Christ Mind that is really there to see. We forgive instead of blame because we don’t take the thoughts that come from the ego mind seriously.

Jesus tells us how much we help every brother as we open our minds to the miracle of correction: “Forgiveness is the answer to attack of any kind. So is attack deprived of its effects, and hate is answered in the name of love. To you to whom it has been given to save the Son of God from crucifixion and from hell and death, all glory be forever. For you have power to save the Son of God because his Father willed that it be so. And in your hands does all salvation lie, to be both offered and received as one.” (17:2-6)

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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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