Lesson 104
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You Are Irreplaceable
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
  CH 9 "THE CORRECTION OF ERROR"
VII. GRANDEUR VERSUS GRANDIOSITY       
 
57 You are altogether irreplaceable in the Mind of God. No one else can fill your part of It, and while you leave your part of It empty, your eternal place merely waits for your return. God, through His Voice, reminds you of It, and God Himself keeps your extensions safe within It. Yet you do not know them until you return to them. You cannot replace the Kingdom, and you cannot replace yourself. God, Who knows your value, would not have it so, and so it is not so. Your value is in God's Mind and therefore not in yours alone. To accept yourself as God created you cannot be arrogance because it is the denial of arrogance. To accept your littleness is arrogant because it means that you believe your evaluation of yourself is truer than God's
 
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
DAILY LESSONS
SonShip Workbook
L e s s o n  104
I seek but what belongs to me in truth.


* IAMBIC PENTAMETER BEGINS*
 
< AUDIO> <VIDEO>
Voice and Music by CIMS SonShip Radio

   Today's idea continues with the thought
   that joy and peace are not but idle dreams.
   They are your right, because of what you are.
   They come to you from God, Who cannot fail
   to give you what He wills. Yet must there be
   a place made ready to receive His gifts.
   They are not welcomed gladly by a mind
   which has instead received the gifts it made
   where His belong, as substitutes for them.

   Today we would remove all meaningless
   and self-made gifts which we have placed upon
   the holy altar where God's gifts belong.
   His are the gifts which are our own in truth.
   His are the gifts which we inherited
   before time was, and which will still be ours
   when time has passed into eternity.
   His are the gifts which are within us now,
   for they are timeless. And we need not wait
   to have them. They belong to us today.

   Therefore we will to have them now, and know
   in choosing them in place of what we made
   we but unite our will with what God wills,
   and recognize the same as being One.
   Our longer practice periods today,
   the hourly five minutes given truth
   for your salvation, should begin with this:
  
   I seek but what belongs to me in truth. 
   And joy and peace are my inheritance.

   Then lay aside the conflicts of the world
   which offer other gifts and other goals
   made of illusions, witnessed to by them,
   and sought for only in a world of dreams.

   All this we lay aside, and seek instead
   that which is truly ours, as we ask
   to recognize what God has given us.
   We clear a holy place within our minds
   before His altar, where His gifts of peace
   and joy are welcome, and to which we come
   to find what has been given us by Him.
   We come in confidence today, aware
   that what belongs to us in truth is what
   He gives. And we would wish for nothing else,
   for nothing else belongs to us in truth.

   So do we clear the way for Him today
   by simply recognizing that His Will
   is done already, and that joy and peace
   belong to us as His eternal gifts.
   We will not let ourselves lose sight of them
   between the times we come to seek for them
   where He has laid them. This reminder will
   we bring to mind as often as we can:
   
   I seek but what belongs to me in truth. 
   God's gifts of joy and peace are all I want.
 
     ~ Original Handscript of ACIM   
 
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ACIM Edmonton - Sarah's Reflections 
ACIM Edmonton, CA
LESSON 104
I seek but what belongs to me in truth.
 
Sarah's Commentary:

Isn't it interesting how we spend our lives seeking for happiness, wanting to be free of conflict, wanting peace, joy, and love, not knowing we already have within us everything we seek? Why are peace, love, and joy not consistent experiences in our lives? The answer is that we are constantly choosing against what is in our own best interests. We continue to side with the ego that tells us our lot in life is to suffer because we have sinned against God, and thus we don't welcome the love and peace given to us. "They are not welcomed gladly by a mind that has instead received the gifts it made where His belong, as substitutes for them." (W.104.1.5) We make plans and goals, believing they will bring us the happiness we seek; but, instead, all they offer is more guilt and pain, which reinforces our belief that we are separate from God. The ego urges us to keep seeking for substitutes for God, but these substitutes will never satisfy us. They are "all meaningless and self-made gifts" (W.104.2.1) that we have put in the place where God's gifts await our acceptance. The only thing that will fill the emptiness we try to fill with idols in the world is the experience of the love we are.
 
Imagine having everything you believe is important in your life. You have all the money, all the power, all the recognition, and everything you have sought in the world. Yet if you lack real contentment, real peace, and real joy that wells up from deep within, then what do you really have? The things of this world we strive for will never fulfill us. With our focus on our perceived needs as we define them, we resist God's gifts. In fact, we are afraid of them. But everyone eventually comes to the recognition that the things we have made to substitute for His gifts do not deliver on their promises. Does this mean we must give up our cherished goals? No. As long as we still value them, to give them up is to sacrifice what we think we want. My experience is that as I withdraw the value I have placed on them, they just drop away. This has come with the recognition that I really do not know my own best interests, and therefore, I have no idea where my happiness lies.
 
This Lesson reminds us that as long as we clutter up the holy place within our minds with our own "gifts," there will be no room there for us to discover the gifts given to us by God. "Yet must there be a place made ready to receive His gifts." (W.104.1.4) "We clear a holy place within our minds before His altar, where His gifts of peace and joy are welcome, and to which we come to find what has been given us by Him." (W.104.4.2)
 
How do we do it? He instructs us to: "Lay aside the conflicts of the world," (W.104.3.4) which are all those things that clutter the holy inner altar, including our secret sins, our guilt, shame, fear, sadness, desires, specialness, and unworthiness; Choose to have His gifts ". . . in place of what we made." (W.104.3.1); Recognize our will is the same as God's. We truly want the same thing as He wants for us. Therefore, we must ". . . unite our will with what God wills, and recognize the same as being one." (W.104.3.1); And finally, affirm joy and peace as are our inheritance, given to us ". . . before time was, and that will still be ours when time has passed into eternity." (W.104.2.3)
 
We have always had these gifts. Jesus said, "Before Abraham was I am." Like the words of the song: "I am as I am, as sent me," we have always been. Nothing we can ever do can change the truth of who we are "as sent me." We are not actually sent anywhere, but we appear to be here when we are actually at home in God. The Atonement principle affirms that we can't change the truth about the Self we are, although we can stay unaware of this truth as long as we choose. When we are ready, and only then, will we open our hearts and minds to this truth. We need to give it welcome. It will never be thrust on us. We need to loosen our commitment to our way and recognize that there truly is a better way. What is needed is a willingness that comes only when we see that our way does not work, and we finally admit we have been wrong about who we are and where our happiness lies.
 
If these gifts of love, true freedom, and eternal life are with us now, what Jesus is telling us is that we don't have to wait for them, which is contrary to what the ego tells us. The ego says that God's love is in the future, and we must suffer and atone for our sins to receive the gifts of Heaven in the hereafter. Thus, we believe we have to pay the price first by cleaning up our act. Clearly, this is not what Jesus is teaching us in the Course. It is our fear that is keeping us from God's Love. We can choose to have His gifts now in the place of what we have made; but as long as we think that we need our pain, our anger, our depression, and our own way, believing that it will buy us something of value in the future, we are actively choosing against these gifts. Our investment in fear, suffering, and specialness is what we must look at with great honesty.
 
Jesus says that nothing belongs to us except peace and joy. Our other seeming possessions are nothing. When we realize we have our natural inheritance, ". . . we would wish for nothing else for nothing else belongs to us in truth." (W.104.4.4) What else could we want? Why would we want to suffer? There is no need to seek for what we have already. We don't consistently experience the gifts of God because what we have made in this dream has taken the place of these gifts. Yet we can reclaim them anytime we choose by clearing the way for them through forgiveness. Once we do, peace and joy extend through us.
 
We have all probably experienced at some time in our lives being in a room with someone who radiates joy and peace. I remember my first and only visit with Chief Dan George many years ago. I had read about him prior to our meeting, and he was a hero to me. I was very excited about meeting him and very nervous. Yet as he held both my hands while I knelt in front of the chair where he was sitting and he looked into my eyes, I dissolved into tears. It was a beautiful joining where there was no need to fill the space with words. He just radiated such peace and certainty about who he is. It was an unforgettable moment I will forever treasure because it was a turning point early in my life---I recognized what it was I wanted to find in myself.
 
This kind of connection can be so deeply intimate and powerful that it can bring up fear. We fear this kind of intimacy because we are invested in defending against it. We work to maintain our boundaries. We want to maintain our separation where we feel safe. Recognizing the discomfort of this kind of intimacy is a demonstration of how much we fear love. We believe our safety lies in separation. We are uncomfortable in the face of such a deep level of intimacy. Yet each time we join in peace and love, we experience His presence, which offers a beautiful gift of healing. Each time we are in the presence of the Christ, we are reminded what we are---One Self united with our Creator, all the same, with no separate interests. "I seek but what belongs to me in truth, and joy and peace are my inheritance." (W.104.3.3) When we let down the seemingly protective guard, we feel exposed; yet in this, we see into each other in a deep and intimate way.
 
With all the focus on understanding the Lessons, which is important, of course, we sometimes lose the intent of practice and application throughout the day. Practice is essential if the Lesson is to take hold in our experience. And there is no question---if we are doing the practice as per the Lesson instructions, it takes tremendous vigilance. The extent to which we invest in practice gives us a sense of the extent of our dedication and commitment to the truth at this time in our lives. It also shows us our resistance and fear. We are urged not to fight the ego. It is just another opportunity to look at our fear and bring it to the light.
 
Do not judge or condemn yourself when you find resistance strong. Just notice it and ask for help to find your way to more willingness. We are asked not to fight ourselves, as this will not release resistance, but in fact, only strengthen it. This is why Jesus demonstrates such patience with us, and we must be patient with ourselves.
 
Recognize that nothing need change in your world. It is all perfect for your awakening when used as an opportunity to accept and to forgive. All you need to do is choose to release your interpretations of outside events and ask Him to decide for you how to see everything and everyone. Everything is perfect for our awakening when we choose to use our day as a classroom for this purpose. I love how it is said by Jesus, in The Way of Mastery by Jon Mark Hammer [Jayem], " I want you to remember that time has been given to you that you might use it constructively. That means when you awaken in the morning, realize that you are in school. You do not have to drive anywhere; you are already there!" Yes, this world is very valuable to us when used as a classroom for undoing the false self.
 
Everything here is for our own best interests. Today, when I am tempted not to be joyful, not to be peaceful, and to blame others or myself for anything, or think I know what would make me happy, I remember these things have actually only brought me misery. I choose to give up the ego's counsel as to where my happiness lies. Instead, I remember that the only way back to my Self is to continually seek out the Teacher within whose light will shine away my false beliefs and concepts. My part is to bring these false perceptions to the light of His truth, so a space in my mind is cleared for His gifts. If I am tempted to be upset by anything today, I am willing to see that it is my resistance to remembering the truth of what I am. I will not judge the resistance, but I will accept it as a natural response to the progress I am making in my healing. I accept it as a positive sign.

Love and blessings, Sarah
A Course in Miracles
TEXT
ACIM Original Edition
 
Chapter Nine

The Correction of Error   

<TEXT AUDIO>
 
Voice and Music by Martin Weber, CIMS SonShip Radio

VII. Grandeur Versus Grandiosity   

48 Grandeur is of God and only of Him. Therefore, it is in you. Whenever you become aware of it, however dimly, you abandon the ego automatically because in the presence of the grandeur of God the meaninglessness of the ego becomes perfectly apparent. Though it does not understand this, the ego believes that its "enemy" has struck and attempts to offer gifts to induce you to return to its "protection." Self-inflation of the ego is its alternative to the grandeur of God. Which will you choose?
 
49 Grandiosity is always a cover for despair. It is without hope because it is not real. It is an attempt to counteract your littleness, based on the belief that the littleness is real. Without this belief, grandiosity is meaningless, and you could not possibly want it. The essence of grandiosity is competitiveness because it always involves attack. It is a delusional attempt to outdo but not to undo. We said before that the ego vacillates between suspiciousness and viciousness. It remains suspicious as long as you despair of yourself. It shifts to viciousness whenever you will not tolerate self-abasement and seek relief. Then it offers you the illusion of attack as a solution.
 
50 The ego does not know the difference between grandeur and grandiosity because it does not know the difference between miracle impulses and ego-alien beliefs of its own. We once said that the ego is aware of threat, but does not make distinctions between two entirely different kinds of threat to its existence. Its own profound sense of vulnerability renders it incapable of judgment except in terms of attack. When it experiences threat, its only decision is whether to attack now or to withdraw to attack later. If you accept its offer of grandiosity, it will attack immediately. If you do not, it will wait.
 
51  The ego is immobilized in the presence of God's grandeur because His grandeur establishes your freedom. Even the faintest hint of your reality literally drives the ego from your mind because of complete lack of investment in it. Grandeur is totally without illusions, and because it is real, it is compellingly convincing. Yet the conviction of reality will not remain with you unless you do not allow the ego to attack it. The ego will make every effort to recover and mobilize its energies against your release. It will tell you that you are insane and argue that grandeur cannot be a real part of you because of the littleness in which it believes.
 
52 Yet your grandeur is not delusional because you did not make it. You have made grandiosity and are afraid of it because it is a form of attack, but your grandeur is of God, Who created it out of His Love. From your grandeur you can only bless, because your grandeur is your abundance. By blessing, you hold it in your mind, protecting it from illusions and keeping yourself in the Mind of God. Remember always that you cannot be anywhere except in the Mind of God. When you forget this, you will despair, and you will attack.
 
53 The ego depends solely on your willingness to tolerate it. If you are willing to look upon your grandeur, you cannot despair, and therefore you cannot want the ego. Your grandeur is God's answer to the ego because it is true. Littleness and grandeur cannot co-exist, nor is it possible for them to alternate in your awareness. Littleness and grandiosity can and must alternate in your awareness since both are untrue and are therefore on the same level. Being the level of shift, it is experienced as shifting, and extremes are its essential characteristic.
 
54 Truth and littleness are denials of each other because grandeur is truth. Truth does not vacillate; it is always true. When grandeur slips away from you, you have replaced it with something you have made. Perhaps it is the belief in littleness; perhaps it is the belief in grandiosity. Yet it must be insane because it is not true. Your grandeur will never deceive you, but your illusions always will. Illusions are deceptions. You cannot triumph, but you are exalted. And in your exalted state, you seek others like you and rejoice with them.
 
55 It is easy to distinguish grandeur from grandiosity because love is returned, but pride is not. Pride will not produce miracles and therefore will deprive you of your true witnesses to your reality. Truth is not obscure nor hidden, but its obviousness to you lies in the joy you bring to its witnesses, who show it to you. They attest to your grandeur, but they cannot attest to pride because pride is not shared. God wants you to behold what He created because it is His joy.
 
56 Can your grandeur be arrogant when God Himself witnesses to it? And what can be real that has no witnesses? What good can come of it? And if no good can come of it, the Holy Spirit cannot use it. What He cannot transform to the Will of God does not exist at all. Grandiosity is delusional because it is used to replace your grandeur. Yet what God has created cannot be replaced. God is incomplete without you because His grandeur is total, and you cannot be missing from it.
 
57 You are altogether irreplaceable in the Mind of God. No one else can fill your part of It, and while you leave your part of It empty, your eternal place merely waits for your return. God, through His Voice, reminds you of It, and God Himself keeps your extensions safe within It. Yet you do not know them until you return to them. You cannot replace the Kingdom, and you cannot replace yourself. God, Who knows your value, would not have it so, and so it is not so. Your value is in God's Mind and therefore not in yours alone. To accept yourself as God created you cannot be arrogance because it is the denial of arrogance. To accept your littleness is arrogant because it means that you believe your evaluation of yourself is truer than God's.
 
58 Yet if truth is indivisible, your evaluation of yourself must be God's. You did not establish your value, and it needs no defense. Nothing can attack it or prevail over it. It does not vary. It merely is. Ask the Holy Spirit what it is and He will tell you, but do not be afraid of His answer, for it comes from God. It is an exalted answer because of its Source, but the Source is true and so is Its answer. Listen and do not question what you hear, for God does not deceive. He would have you replace the ego's belief in littleness with His own exalted answer to the question of your being, so that you can cease to question it and know it for what it is
.
          ~ Original Hand Script of ACIM  
   

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