Lesson 151
Mt Haleakala by Rhett Billings
Photo of Mt Haleakala by Rhett Billings

90 Decide that God is right and you are wrong about yourself. He created you out of Himself but still within Him. He knows what you are. Remember that there is no second to Him. There cannot, therefore, be anyone without His Holiness nor anyone unworthy of His perfect Love. Fail not in your function of loving in a loveless place made out of darkness and deceit, for thus are darkness and deceit undone. Fail not yourself, but instead offer to God and you His blameless Son. For this small gift of appreciation for His Love, God will Himself exchange your gift for His. 
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SonShip Workbook
L e s s o n  151
All things are echoes of the Voice of* God. 
Voice and Music by CIMS SonShip Radio


   No one can judge on partial evidence.
   That is not judgment. It is merely an
   opinion based on ignorance and doubt.
   Its seeming certainty is but a cloak
   for the uncertainty it would conceal.
   It needs irrational defense because
   it is irrational. And the defense
   seems strong, convincing, and without a doubt
   because of all the doubting underneath.
   You do not seem to doubt the world you see.
   You do not really question what is shown
   you through the body's eyes. Nor do you ask
   why you believe it, even though you learned
   a long while since your senses do deceive.
   That you believe them to the last detail
   which they report is even stranger when
   you pause to recollect how frequently
   they have been faulty witnesses indeed!
   Why would you trust them so implicitly?
   Why but because of underlying doubt
   which you would hide with show of certainty?
   How can you judge? Your judgment rests upon
   the witness that your senses offer you.
   Yet witness never falser was than this.
   But how else do you judge the world you see?
   You place pathetic faith in what your eyes
   and ears report. You think your fingers touch
   reality and close upon the truth.
   This is awareness which you understand,
   and think more real than what is witnessed to
   by the Eternal Voice of God Himself.

   Can this be judgment? You have often been
   urged to refrain from judging, not because
   it is a right to be withheld from you.
   You cannot judge. You merely can believe
   the ego's judgments, all of which are false.
   It guides your senses carefully, to prove
   how weak you are; how helpless and afraid,
   how apprehensive of just punishment,
   how black with sin, how wretched in your guilt.
   This thing it speaks of, and would yet defend,
   it tells you is yourself. And you believe
   that this is so with stubborn certainty.
   Yet underneath remains the hidden doubt
   that what it shows you as reality
   with such conviction it does not believe.
   It is itself alone that it condemns,
   it is within itself it sees the guilt,
   it is its own despair it sees in you.|

   Hear not its voice. The witnesses it sends
   to prove to you its evil is your own
   are false, and speak with certainty of what
   they do not know. Your faith in them is blind
   because you would not share the doubts their lord
   can not completely vanquish. You believe
   to doubt his vassals is to doubt yourself.|
   Yet you must learn to doubt their evidence
   will clear the way to recognize yourself,
   and let the Voice for God alone be Judge
   of what is worthy of your own belief.

   He will not tell you that your brother should
   be judged by what your eyes behold in him,
   or what his body's mouth says to your ears,
   or what your fingers' touch report of him.
   He passes by such idle witnesses,
   which merely bear false witness to God's Son.
   He recognizes only what God loves,
   and in the holy light of what He sees
   do all the ego's dreams of what you are
   vanish before the splendor He beholds.|
   Let Him be Judge of what you are, for He
   has certainty in which there is no doubt
   because it rests on Certainty so great
   that doubt is meaningless before Its Face.
   Christ cannot doubt Himself. The Voice of God
   can only honor Him, rejoicing in
   His perfect, everlasting sinlessness.
   Whom He has judged can only laugh at guilt,
   unwilling now to play with toys of sin,
   unheeding of the body's witnesses
   before the rapture of His holy Face.|
   And thus He judges you. Accept His word
   of what you are, for He bears witness to
   your beautiful creation and the Mind
   Whose Thought created your reality.
   What can the body mean to Him Who knows
   the glory of the Father and the Son?
   What whispers of the ego can He hear?
   What could convince Him that your sins are real?
   Let Him be Judge as well of everything
   that seems to happen to you in this world.
   His lessons will enable you to bridge
   the gap between illusions and the truth.|
   He will remove all faith that you have placed
   in pain, disaster, suffering and loss.
   He gives you vision which can look beyond
   these grim appearances, and can behold
   the gentle Face of Christ in all of them.
   You will no longer doubt that only good
   can come to you who are beloved of God,
   for He will judge all happenings, and teach
   the single lesson which they all contain.|
   He will select the elements in them
   which represent the truth, and disregard
   those aspects which reflect but idle dreams.
   And He will reinterpret all you see,
   and all occurrences, each circumstance,
   and every happening which seems to touch
   on you in any way from His one frame
   of reference, wholly unified and sure.
   And you will see the love beyond the hate,
   the constancy in change, the pure in sin,
   and only Heaven's blessing on the world.|

   Such is your resurrection, for your life
   is not a part of anything you see.
   It stands beyond the body and the world,
   past every witness for unholiness,
   within the Holy, holy as Itself.
   In everyone and everything His Voice
   will speak to you of nothing but your Self
   and your Creator, Who is One with Him.
   So will you see the holy Face of Christ
   in everything, and hear in everything
   no sound except the echo of God's Voice.
   We practice wordlessly today, except
   at the beginning of the time we spend
   with God. We introduce these times with but
   a single, slow repeating of the thought
   with which the day begins. And then we watch
   our thoughts, appealing silently to Him
   Who sees the elements of truth in them.
   Let Him evaluate each thought that comes
   to mind, remove the elements of dreams,
   and give them back to you as clean ideas
   which do not contradict the Will of God.

   Give Him your thoughts, and He will give them back
   as miracles which joyously proclaim
   the wholeness and the happiness God wills
   His Son as proof of His Eternal Love.
   And as each thought is thus transformed, it takes
   on healing power from the Mind Which saw
   the truth in it, and failed to be deceived
   by what was falsely added. All the threads
   of fantasy are gone, and what remains
   is unified into a perfect Thought
   that offers its perfection everywhere.

   Spend fifteen minutes thus when you awake,
   and gladly give another fifteen more
   before you go to sleep. Your ministry
   begins as all your thoughts are purified.
   So are you taught to teach the Son of God
   the holy lesson of his sanctity.
   No one can fail to listen when you hear
   the Voice of God give honor to God's Son.
   And everyone will share the thoughts with you
   which He has retranslated in your mind.
   Such is your Eastertide. And so you lay
   the gift of snow-white lilies on the world,
   replacing witnesses to sin and death.
   Through your transfiguration is the world
   redeemed and joyfully released from guilt.
   Now do we lift our resurrected minds
   in gladness and in gratitude to Him
   Who has restored our sanity to us.

   And we will hourly remember Him
   Who is salvation and deliverance.
   As we give thanks, the world unites with us,
   and happily accepts our holy thoughts
   which Heaven has corrected and made pure.
   Now has our ministry begun at last,
   to carry round the world the joyous news
   that truth has no illusions, and the peace
   of God, through us, belongs to everyone. 
      ~ *From the Scribe's Original Handscript Notes

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ACIM Edmonton - Sarah's Reflections 
ACIM Edmonton, CA
All things are echoes of the Voice for* God.
Sarah's Commentary
Our bodies and the world were made as a defense against the love we are. Everything here is a reflection of the guilt in the mind projected onto the world. It all attests to separation. Yet, as we have seen in the Review Lessons, Jesus tells us that our minds hold only what we think with God. When the guilt in the mind is released, only peace and joy are reflected, but we experience fear in letting go of the known. We fear the Love we are. It is the last obstacle to peace, which is the fear of God.
My friend, Stacy Sully, asked, "What does it mean to be at the mercy of love?" She went on to say, "It means a trust beyond all reason. A surrender pregnant with pure unlimited potential. A total relinquishing of all the ideas I hold about life. Slipping into the silence and allowing love to show me who I AM. It means touching the deepest places of my vulnerability and being nakedly honest about my cherished defenses. If I am truly at the mercy of love, then there could be no conditions that I could place on the manner in which love chooses to show me who I AM. Whether it be the deepest darkest canyon or the highest brightest peak, it is all the same to Love. I cannot claim victimhood, abandonment, rejection, or unworthiness. My preferences and aversions must be seen as my ultimate defenses. I can no longer hide in my stories."
We do hide in our stories, and we do distract from our pain or make others responsible for it. When we notice our defenses, we are provided with an opportunity to become aware of how afraid we are of the all-consuming love of God. When we notice how we are defending, we can start to question what it is about for us. When we become willing to look behind our defenses, we begin the process of questioning the validity of the "dirge" we sing and the stories we hide in. We start to question the value of holding onto our defenses when all they do is to keep us in a state of suffering. No, it is not necessary or even helpful to go looking or digging to see what we are hiding from ourselves. We can instead use what is given in our daily lives and in our relationships as a classroom for learning where we can look behind our defenses when we are willing to do the healing. When we are willing to become curious about our reactions, we can investigate what is happening to trigger defensive reactions in us. Our reactions are based on what we value, the beliefs we hold, and our self-concepts. It is all part of the conditioned mind and not who we are. When the mind is quiet, and we refuse to attend to the raucous shrieks of the ego, we find respite in the quiet center of the mind. It is this we bring to the world to reflect God's love wherever we go.
We hide our uncertainties under the guise of certainty. "Its seeming certainty is but a cloak for the uncertainty it would conceal." (W.151.1.4) We think we know, but what can we really know when we are told, "No one can judge on partial evidence." (W.151.1.1) Jesus reminds us, "It is necessary for the Teacher of God to realize, not that he should not judge, but that he cannot. In giving up judgment, he is merely giving up what he did not have." (Manual for Teachers.10.2.1-2) He goes on to say judgment is impossible. Why? Because, "In order to judge anything rightly, one would have to be fully aware of an inconceivably wide range of things; past, present and to come. One would have to recognize in advance all the effects of his judgments on everyone and everything involved in them in any way. And one would have to be certain there is no distortion in his perception, so that his judgment would be wholly fair to everyone on whom it rests now and in the future. Who is in a position to do this? Who except in grandiose fantasies would claim this for himself?" (M.10.3.3-7)
Our senses, meaning our eyes, ears, and brains that interpret what we think is reality, are there to convince us that the world is real. They inform us that what we see, hear, experience, feel, and touch is actually there. Our senses were made by the ego to keep us in ignorance about our true reality given us by God in our creation. Jesus says that our faith in the information we gather daily through our senses is pathetic! He bluntly tells us that all of our interpretations are wrong. It is humbling to be told we are mistaken about everything we think. The truth is, "My mind holds only what I think with God." (W.R.IV.IN.2.2) (ACIM OE W.RIV.3) Everything else is simply not the truth. "You cannot judge. You merely can believe the ego's judgments, all of which are false." (W.151.4.3-4) Since we don't really believe this yet, we have work to do.
We think we understand something only to learn that we have been wrong. We think we observe correctly only to be deceived. We think something in the world is true, and it turns out not to be. We discover our senses really can't be trusted. So why do we continue to trust them? Jesus tells us that we do so because we are choosing to be deceived. We are determined to make correct the things we believe might actually be incorrect. All of our uncertainty started when we first chose to listen to the ego. With this choice came doubt about who we are. Now, in our uncertainty, we have made an image, and it is the image we defend. It is who we think we are. The world and the body are massive defenses against the reality of our Eternal Self.
This is why we need help from outside of this dream---we have become convinced we are right about the way we see things. "It [the ego] guides your senses carefully, to prove how weak you are; how helpless and afraid, how apprehensive of just punishment, how black with sin, how wretched in your guilt." (W.151.4.5) There is no question that we have bought the ego's story that we have sinned and are guilty. It has convinced us that we can expect punishment for what we have done. This keeps us in a state of fear. We feel vulnerable, lacking, afraid, abandoned, and unworthy of love, and we feel bad about ourselves. With these feelings come addiction, anxiety, depression, and difficult relationships.
The guilt is such a burden on our minds that we try whatever we can to be rid of it. The ego has given us a plan to get rid of our guilt by projecting it onto others. Yet it failed to reveal to us that not only will this not work, but we will feel even more guilty. With projection, others are now made to be responsible for how we feel. Something or someone "out there" must be the cause of my distress. When we identify with the ego's thought system of sin and guilt, we are in a constant state of defense against seemingly external attacks. Jesus helps us to see that it is only mind that is the cause of what we experience, and our minds can change as we learn to take responsibility for our perceptions and turn them over for his interpretations, as a substitute for our own. He will always assure us we are innocent. When we know our innocence, we will see it reflected in everyone. We will see all things are indeed the echoes of the Voice for God. There is only love and nothing else.
When we experience a spiritual connection, a holy instant, it is a threat to the ego because it knows we can withdraw our allegiance to it anytime we choose. It knows its existence is in peril because it is only our allegiance to it that maintains it. Our burning love for God has put us on this path and as we draw closer to the connection with Spirit, our investment in the ego is lessened. And it is what turns the ego from suspicious to vicious. It is an ego backlash where we experience its retaliation. This can cast us into an experience of doubt and despair about our goal to awaken. The resistance can increase as we draw nearer to the truth of who we are, but it can't stop us unless we allow it.
The ego requires us to continue to believe in the reality of this world for its existence. Its fear is that we actually are God's Son and not what we have made of ourselves. As we go through the journey of the development of trust, we go through stages of undoing, sorting, relinquishment, states of peace, and back through the stages. It is helpful to see how, during the process, there will be times where the going gets hard. The ego retaliates, we lose faith, and are tempted to give up on this path, but this is often when the biggest progress is being made. As Jesus reminds us, we can't rely on our own perceptions of how we are doing. "There are areas in your learning skills that are so impaired that you can progress only under constant, clear-cut direction, provided by a Teacher Who can transcend your limited resources." (T.12.V.5.2) (ACIM OE T.11.VI.47) This is a time of trust. "Put yourself not in charge of this, for you cannot distinguish between advance and retreat." (T.18.V.1.5) (ACIM OE T.18.VI.41)
If indeed, "All things are echoes of the Voice for God," (W.151) then communication from God is continuous and is in everything and everyone around us. It is similar to the thought we have been practicing, "My mind holds only what I think with God." (W.R.IV.IN.2.2) (ACIM OE W.IV.3) The only challenge is that we do not hear it, or know, it because of our own investment in the reality of the world, as defined by the ego and confirmed by our senses. Yet in every brother, we are given the opportunity to hear the truth. "Behold your God in him [your brother] for what you see will be your Answer." (Psychotherapy Pamphlet.2.VII.7.8) Instead of sending out messengers, looking for evidence of guilt, we now look for evidence of love and innocence. "What fear would feed upon, love overlooks. What fear demands, love cannot even see." (T.19.IV.A.i.11.4-5) (ACIM OE T.19.V.a.50) The truth is in everyone. We are all part of the Christ Mind, as One Son. We are learning to undo the belief that separate interests can bring us peace and happiness. We go together, you and I.
"The Holy Spirit has given you love's messengers to send instead of those you trained through fear. They are as eager to return to you what they hold dear as are the others. If you send them forth, they will see only the blameless and the beautiful, the gentle and the kind. They will be as careful to let no little act of charity, no tiny expression of forgiveness, no little breath of love escape their notice. And they will return with all the happy things they found, to share them lovingly with you. Be not afraid of them. They offer you salvation. Theirs are the messages of safety, for they see the world as kind." (T.19.IV.A.i.14.1-8) (ACIM OE T.19.V.a.53)
The remedy is to turn our thoughts to the Holy Spirit and not try to do this for ourselves because we simply can't. We have a lot of investment in the things of the world, and we continue to believe in the reality of pain, disaster, suffering, and loss and can't see beyond them to the shining radiance of the real world. We need help to do this, and the way we get this help is by being willing to question our way of seeing the world. In fact, "Whom He has judged can only laugh at guilt, unwilling now to play with toys of sin; unheeding of the body's witnesses before the rapture of Christ's holy face." (W.151.8.4) We need faith and trust in order to believe that only good can come to us no matter how much we see hate and anger reflected in the world.
When we no longer listen to the voice of the ego, we will see with vision, which reflects the truth of who we are. In order to uncover the truth within us, we need to be willing to pay attention to our ego thoughts so we can bring them to light for healing. We can't heal what we hide from ourselves and defend against. Jesus assures us that turning over our judgments (our thoughts) to the Holy Spirit can bring about Heaven's blessing in every circumstance. Our thoughts do need purification, but no matter how hard we might try, it is not something we can accomplish on our own. He can accomplish it for us, but we must give up the false certainty of the "I know" mind, be willing to be wrong about everything we think we know, and be willing to be taught. This is what is meant in the Bible saying that mentions we must become as little children. We must put our own perspectives to doubt and make room for Him. "And you will see the love beyond the hate, the constancy in change, the pure in sin, and only Heaven's blessing on the world." (W.151.11.3)
If all things are echoes of the Voice for God, then Heaven's blessing is in every circumstance. When we see with vision, we are resurrected. How this looks in our daily lives is that no matter what anyone says, no matter how seemingly hateful, no matter how apparently angry, no matter how sad or lost or pitiful the communication, we will "see the holy face of Christ in everything, and hear in everything no sound except the echo of God's Voice." (W.151.12.4) What this means is that we won't join in the attacks and judgments on others and neither will we join with their sadness and suffering. "To empathize does not mean to join in suffering, for that is what you must refuse to understand. That is the ego's interpretation of empathy, and is always used to form a special relationship in which the suffering is shared. The capacity to empathize is very useful to the Holy Spirit, provided you let Him use it in His way. His way is very different. He does not understand suffering, and would have you teach it is not understandable. When He relates through you, He does not relate through your ego to another ego. He does not join in pain, understanding that healing pain is not accomplished by delusional attempts to enter into it, and lighten it by sharing the delusion." (T.16.I.1.1-7) (ACIM OE T.16.I.1)
As I was writing this, I was interrupted, and because I have much on my plate today, the interruption was not welcome. I felt irritation rising in me at my brother. Then another call came in. I returned to my email only to find this message: "Take time to thank GOD when you are interrupted from your plan. If something comes up that is unavoidable, ask to find the gift in it. Consider the possibility this person or event has been sent to serve and bless you in some way. Perhaps you are being asked to open your heart more, make a stand for something you believe in or take a new direction that will ultimately be more meaningful than the one you were headed in. There are no accidents---only opportunities to dance in a bigger universe. I ask for help to be open to opportunities to know myself better. Let me recognize everyone who comes to me is a teacher and empowers me to do the things that love would have me do. I allow GOD's plan to substitute for mine. I find the jewel in every encounter, relationship, and experience." Yes, the Holy Spirit speaks to us in many ways and His timing was impeccable for what I needed to hear. Now I just need to be attentive to the message.
Today, we turn to the Holy Spirit, Who is the reflection of the certainty of God, to replace our own uncertainty. We turn to Him to help us see that our way has only brought misery and pain. Yet when we look at it all through His eyes, we see that nothing here is serious, even though we tend to make it serious. Jesus calls it all just the toys of children. In the illusion, actions often do have tragic consequences. In truth, nothing real has happened. The Holy Spirit helps us to see that it is illusion. It is all our own dream, coming from our wrong-minded perspective. When we bring our pain and suffering to Him, we learn to see that we have looked at it wrongly, and in that acknowledgment, we are willing to be shown there is another way to see everything. When we are willing to release our investment in our way of seeing, we become willing to be taught. It is not about denying what we are seeing, only the willingness to step out of the dream, above the battleground, where we can see everything in this world as a reflection of love, or a call for love.

Love and blessings, Sarah

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*CIMS uses the Scribe's original handscript notes: "All things are echoes of the Voice of God." 
A Course in Miracles
ACIM Original Edition
Chapter Thirteen

From Perception to Knowledge   

   Voice and Music by Martin Weber, CIMS SonShip Radio

IX. The Way of Salvation
   86 When you accept a brother's guiltlessness, you will see the Atonement in him. For by proclaiming it in him, you make it yours, and you will see what you sought. You will not see the symbol of your brother's guiltlessness shining within him while you still believe it is not there. His guiltlessness is your Atonement. Grant it to him, and you will see the truth of what you have acknowledged. Yet truth is offered first to be received, even as God gave it first to His Son. The first in time means nothing, but the First in eternity is God the Father, Who is both First and One. Beyond the First, there is no other, for there is no order, no second or third and nothing but the First.
87 You who belong to the First Cause, created by Him like unto Himself and part of Him, are more than merely guiltless. The state of guiltlessness is only the condition in which what is not there has been removed from the disordered mind that thought it was. This state, and only this, must you attain with God beside you. For until you do, you will still think that you are separate from Him. You can feel His Presence next to you but cannot know that you are one with Him. This need not be taught. Learning applies only to the condition in which it happens of itself.
88 When you have let all that obscured the truth in your most holy mind be undone for you and stand in grace before your Father, He will give Himself to you as He has always done. Giving Himself is all He knows, and so it is all knowledge. For what He knows not cannot be and therefore cannot be given. Ask not to be forgiven, for this has already been accomplished. Ask, rather, to learn how to forgive and restore what always was to your unforgiving mind. Atonement becomes real and visible to them that use it. On earth this is your only function, and you must learn that it is all you want to learn.
89 You will feel guilty till you learn this. For in the end, whatever form it takes, your guilt arises from your failure to fulfill your function in God's Mind with all of yours. Can you escape this guilt by failing to fulfill your function here? You need not understand creation to do what must be done before that knowledge would be meaningful to you. God breaks no barriers; neither did He make them. When you release them, they are gone. God will not fail nor ever has in anything.
90 Decide that God is right and you are wrong about yourself. He created you out of Himself but still within Him. He knows what you are. Remember that there is no second to Him. There cannot, therefore, be anyone without His Holiness nor anyone unworthy of His perfect Love. Fail not in your function of loving in a loveless place made out of darkness and deceit, for thus are darkness and deceit undone. Fail not yourself, but instead offer to God and you His blameless Son. For this small gift of appreciation for His Love, God will Himself exchange your gift for His.
91 Before you make any decisions for yourself, remember that you have decided against your function in Heaven and consider carefully whether you want to make decisions here. Your function here is only to decide against deciding what you want in recognition that you do not know. How, then, can you decide what you should do? Leave all decisions to the One Who speaks for God and for your function as He knows it. So will He teach you to remove the awful burden you have laid upon yourself by loving not the Son of God and trying to teach him guilt instead of love. Give up this frantic and insane attempt, which cheats you of the joy of living with your God and Father, and awaking gladly to His love and holiness, which join together as the truth in you, making you one with Him.
92 When you have learned how to decide with God, all decisions become as easy and as right as breathing. There is no effort, and you will be led as gently as if you were being carried along a quiet path in summer. Only your own volition seems to make deciding hard. The Holy Spirit will not delay at all in answering your every question what to do. He knows. And He will tell you and then do it for you. You who are tired might consider whether this is not more restful than sleep. For you can bring your guilt into sleeping but not into this.
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