Lesson 184
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Our Father - Forgive Our Illusions
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
  CH 16 "THE FORGIVENESS OF ILLUSIONS" 
VIII. THE END OF ILLUSIONS 

  81 Forgive us our illusions, Father, and help us to accept our true relationship with You in which there are no illusions and where none can ever enter. Our holiness is Yours. What can there be in us that needs forgiveness when Yours is perfect? The sleep of forgetfulness is only the unwillingness to remember Your forgiveness and Your Love. Let us not wander into temptation, for the temptation of the Son of God is not Your Will. And let us receive only what you have given and accept but this into the minds which You created and which You love.  Amen.

              ON LINE: ACIM.OE.TX.CH 16.VIII         AUDIO: TEXT CH 16, VIII       
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
WORKBOOK Part I
INTRODUCTION to LESSONS 181-200
Introduction 181-200
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Voice and Music by CIMS SonShip Radio 
 
*IAMBIC PENTAMETER

Our next few lessons make a special point
of firming up your willingness to make
your weak commitment strong, your scattered goals
blend into one intent. You are not asked
for total dedication all the time,
as yet. But you are asked to practice now
in order to attain the sense of peace
such unified commitment will bestow,
if only intermittently. It is
experiencing this which makes it sure
that you will give your total willingness
to following the way the course sets forth.     

Our lessons now are geared specifically
to widening horizons and direct
approaches to the special blocks which keep
your vision narrow and too limited
to let you see the value of our goal.
We are attempting now to lift these blocks,
however briefly. Words alone can not
convey the sense of liberation which
their lifting brings. But the experience
of freedom and of peace that comes as you
give up your tight control of what you see
speaks for itself. Your motivation will
be so intensified that words become
of little consequence. You will be sure
of what you want and what is valueless.     

And so we start our journey beyond words
by concentrating first on what impedes
our progress still. Experience of what
exists beyond defensiveness remains
beyond achievement while it is denied.
It may be there, but you cannot accept
its presence. So we now attempt to go
past all defenses for a little while
each day. No more than this is asked because
no more than this is needed. It will be
enough to guarantee the rest will come.    

  ~ The Original Handscript Notes


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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
DAILY LESSONS
SonShip Workbook
L e s s o n  184
The Name of God is my inheritance. 
 
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*IAMBIC PENTAMETER*
WHAT IS IAMBIC PENTAMETER?

   You live by symbols. You have made up names
   for everything you see. Each one becomes
   a separate entity, identified
   by its own name. By this you carve it out
   of unity. By this you designate
   its special attributes, and set it off
   from other things by emphasizing space
   surrounding it. This space you lay between
   all things to which you give a different name;
   all happenings in terms of place and time;
   all bodies which are greeted with a name.
 
   This space you see as setting off all things
   from one another is the means by which
   the world's perception is achieved. You see
   something where nothing is, and see as well
   nothing where there is unity; a space
   between all things, between all things and you.
   Thus do you think that you have given life
   in separation. By this split you think
   you are established as a unity
   which functions with an independent will.
 
   What are these names by which the world becomes
   a series of discrete events, of things
   ununified, of bodies kept apart
   and holding bits of mind as separate
   awarenesses? You gave their names to them,
   establishing perception as you wished
   to have perception be. The nameless things
   were given names. And thus reality
   was given them as well. For what is named
   is given meaning, and will then be seen
   as meaningful, a cause of true effects,
   with consequence inherent in itself.
 
   This is the way reality is made
   by partial vision, purposefully set
   against the given truth. Its enemy
   is wholeness. It conceives of little things
   and looks upon them. And a lack of space,
   a sense of unity, or vision which
   sees differently become the threats which it
   must overcome, conflict with and deny.
  
   Yet does this other vision still remain
   a natural direction for the mind
   to channel its perception. It is hard
   to teach the mind a thousand alien names,
   and thousands more. Yet we believe this is
   what learning means; its one essential goal,
   by which communication is achieved,
   and concepts can be meaningfully shared.
 
   This is the sum of the inheritance
   the world bestows. And everyone who learns
   to think that this is so accepts the signs
   and symbols which assert the world is real.
   It is for this they stand. They leave no doubt
   that what is named is there. It can be seen,
   as is anticipated. What denies
   that it is true is but illusion, for
   it is the ultimate reality.
   To question it is madness; to accept
   its presence is the proof of sanity.
 
   Such is the teaching of the world. It is
   a phase of learning everyone who comes
   must go through. But the sooner he perceives
   on what it rests, how questionable are
   its premises, how doubtful its results,
   the sooner does he question its effects.
   Learning which stops with what the world would teach
   stops short of meaning. In its proper place,
   it serves but as a starting point from which
   another kind of learning can begin;
   a new perception can be gained, and all
   the arbitrary names the world bestows
   can be withdrawn as they are raised to doubt.
 
   Think not you made the world. Illusions, yes!
   But what is true in earth and Heaven is
   beyond your naming. When you call upon
   a brother, it is to his body that
   you make appeal. His true identity
   is hidden from you by what you believe
   he really is. His body makes response
   to what you call him, for his mind consents
   to take the name you give him as his own.
   And thus his unity is twice denied,
   for you perceive him separate from you,
   and he accepts this separate name as his.
 
   It would indeed be strange if you were asked
   to go beyond all symbols of the world,
   forgetting them forever; yet were asked
   to play a teaching function. You have need
   to use the symbols of the world a while.
   But be you not deceived by them as well.
   They do not stand for anything at all,
   and in your practicing it is this thought
   which will release you from them. They become
   but means by which you can communicate
   in ways the world can understand, but which
   you recognize is not the unity
   where true communication can be found.
 
   Thus what you need are intervals each day
   in which the learning of the world becomes
   a transitory phase; a prison house
   from which you go into the sunlight and
   forget the darkness. Here you understand
   the Word, the Name Which God has given you;
   the One Identity Which all things share;
   the one acknowledgment of what is true.
   And then step back to darkness, not because
   you think it real, but only to proclaim
   its unreality in terms which still
   have meaning in the world which darkness rules.
 
   Use all the little names and symbols which
   delineate the world of darkness. Yet
   accept them not as your reality.
   The Holy Spirit uses all of them,
   but He does not forget creation has
   One Name, One Meaning and a single Source
   Which unifies all things within Itself.
   Use all the names the world bestows on them
   but for convenience, but do not forget
   they share the Name of God along with you.
 
   God has no name. And yet His Name becomes
   the final lesson that all things are one.
   And at this single lesson learning ends.
   All names are unified. All space is filled
   with truth's reflection. Every gap is closed
   and separation healed. The Name of God
   is the inheritance He gave to those
   who chose the teaching of the world to take
   the place of Heaven. In our practicing,
   our purpose is to let our minds accept
   what He has given as the answer to
   the pitiful inheritance we made
   as fitting tribute to the Son He loves.|
 
   No-one can fail who seeks the meaning of
   the Name of God. Experience must come
   to supplement the Word. But first we must
   accept One Name for all reality,
   and realize the many names we gave
   its aspects have distorted what we see,
   but have not interfered with truth at all.
   One Name we bring into our practicing.
  
   One Name we use to unify our sight.|
   And though we use a different name for each
   awareness of an aspect of God's Son,
   we understand that they have but One Name
   Which He has given them. It is this Name
   we use in practicing. And through Its use,
   all foolish separations disappear
   that kept us blind. And we are given strength
   to see beyond them. Now our sight is blessed
   with blessings we can give as we received.|
 
   "Father, our Name is Yours. In It we are
    united with all living things and You
    Who are their One Creator. What we made
    and call by many different names is but
    a shadow we have tried to cast across
    Your Own Reality. And we are glad
    and thankful we were wrong. All our mistakes
    we give to You, that we may be absolved
    of all effects our errors seem to have.
    And we accept the truth You give in place
    of every one of them. Your Name is our
    salvation and escape from what we made.
    Your Name unites us in the Oneness which
     is our inheritance and peace. Amen."
 
 
      ~ The Original Handscript Notes
 

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ACIM Edmonton - Sarah's Reflections 
ACIM Edmonton, CA
LESSON 184
The Name of God is my inheritance.

  
Sarah's Commentary:

This Lesson helps us understand how we developed our perception by seeing separate things and giving them all names. This keeps us from seeing the whole of reality and keeps us from seeing with vision, which in turn keeps us from seeing who someone really is. It is not just a name connected to a body---it shuts out wholeness. The way we see reality is due to this naming process. We see things that we have named as surrounded by empty space that makes everything seem separate from everything else. We have also done the same thing with ourselves: we believe in our unique attributes, our independent will, and our separate self as contained by a body and holding private thoughts. This is contrary to truth. The truth is unified. It does not acknowledge separate things. Once we have given all these seemingly separate things names, we give them reality as well. "For what is named is given meaning and will then be seen as meaningful; a cause of true effect, with consequence inherent in itself." (W.184.3.4) What we give a name to now has been given importance by the very nature of our naming it.
 
Yesterday, the Lesson concluded that God has no name so there cannot be separation but only perfect unity. We believe we have shattered this perfect unity and now there are forms and shapes instead of Oneness. Each form and shape has been given a name. The whole point of naming everything is so that we will see all those forms, including separate bodies, as real. Now we have come to believe that what the names point to is real and we agree this is so. This is what the world has offered us as its inheritance, and we have agreed with what it bestows, accepting ". . . the signs and symbols that assert the world is real." (W.184.6.2) Those signs and symbols represent everything in this world that reinforces our belief in separation, including pain, sickness, wars, problems, specialness, and finally death. We do not doubt that what is named is there.
 
We are so certain that what we see is actually there. We have given meaning to everything we see. This takes us right back to Lesson 1. "Nothing I see in this room [on this street, from this window, in this place] means anything." (W.1) None of it has any meaning except the meaning we bestow on it. Jesus understands that for us to question it at all seems crazy, yet it is what he is asking us to do. "To question it is madness; to accept its presence is the proof of sanity." (W.184.6.7) To be well adjusted to the world seems perfectly sane to us. It seems like insanity not to accept the reality of this world, and so we become part of it. The agreement we all hold, that this world is real, is powerful. The world's religions confirm that God is the Creator of this world and this, too, makes it real in the minds of most. Jesus tells us that just because there is agreement by most that all of this is real, it does not make it so.
 
What learning means in the world is to ". . . teach the mind a thousand alien names, and thousands more." (W.184.5.2) Jesus tells us that this is hard to do, but we have accomplished it. He tells us it is difficult to teach an abstract mind so many concrete symbols. "What you have taught yourself is such a giant learning feat it is indeed incredible." (T.31.I.2.7) (ACIM OE T.31.I.2) He challenges our belief that learning this Course is difficult when, in fact, we truly have accomplished the most difficult learning feat of all. We have taught ourselves that we are something we are not.
 
"No one who understands what you have learned, how carefully you learned it, and the pains to which you went to practice and repeat the lessons endlessly, in every form you could conceive of them, could ever doubt the power of your learning skill. There is no greater power in the world. The world was made by it, and even now depends on nothing else. The lessons you have taught yourself have been so overlearned and fixed they rise like heavy curtains to obscure the simple and the obvious. Say not you cannot learn them. For your power to learn is strong enough to teach you that your will is not your own, your thoughts do not belong to you, and even you are someone else." (T.31.I.3.1-6) (ACIM OE T.31.I.3)
 
At some point, we start to question what we have learned, and the beginning of this questioning motivates us to search for the deeper meaning of our lives. We start to wonder why we are here, and what is the purpose for our lives. We tell ourselves that there must be a better way of being in the world. Jesus tells us, "In its proper place, it serves but as a starting point from which another kind of learning can begin, a new perception can be gained, and all the arbitrary names the world bestows can be withdrawn as they are raised to doubt." (W.184.7.5) In other words, the world can now become a place for learning "a new perception," or another way to see everything. The world becomes a backdrop for finding a new way of seeing everything by turning to the Guide within us. Everything in the world can provide us with an opportunity to release our way of seeing.
 
Just because the symbols of the world do not reflect God's reality, it does not mean we stop using them. "You have need to use the symbols of the world a while. But be you not deceived by them as well." (W.184.9.2-3) We still think that we live in this world, and we think that we relate from our body to other bodies, but we can now use our experiences here to learn another way of relating. Instead of defining our brothers by their bodies and personalities, we ask for help to see the love beyond the forms. We are learning to be released from the symbols of this world so that instead of separation, we experience joining. The symbols can be used as helpful ways of reflecting God's love, instead of using them for maintaining the separation. "Thus what you need are intervals each day in which the learning of the world becomes a transitory phase; a prison house from which you go into the sunlight and forget the darkness." (W.184.10.1) In the holy instant, we can escape the symbols temporarily and have an experience of the formless. This is a reflection of God's Oneness.
 
When you step back from the experience of the holy instant into the world of darkness, it is ". . . not because you think it real, but only to proclaim its unreality in terms which still have meaning in the world that darkness rules." (W.184.10.3) Thus, we are still using the signs and symbols that delineate this world, but for a different purpose. The world is now just a backdrop for the healing of our minds. "You walk this path as others walk, nor do you seem to be distinct from them, although you are indeed. Thus can you serve them while you serve yourself, and set their footsteps on the way that God has opened up to you, and them through you." (W.155.5.3)
 
In other words, we are not escaping the world, but we are living in the world as others do while holding a different mindset. We do not need to quit our jobs or leave our families. We do not need to go to ashrams, though there may indeed be changes in our lifestyles and situations. Regardless of where we are, "There is a way of living in the world that is not here, although it seems to be." (W.155.1.1) Jesus says that those who are like us will recognize us. While we function in the world and work with the symbols of this world, our purpose is one of waking up from this dream through our relationships with everything and everyone in the world. Now we are willing to look at everything from a new perspective. We no longer take the world's perspective but instead see everything in a new light. It is the light of truth. It is the recognition we are all the same. We have the same ego, with all the same attributes, and the same Christ Self.
 
Jesus is teaching us how to live in the world but also to recognize that this is not our true reality. Yet while this world is an illusion, we have a function here, which is to forgive. This requires watching our thoughts and, in every moment, being willing to be shown that there is another way to see everything. What seems like an attack is really a call for love. What we had used to support our specialness can now be used for the purpose of undoing. Instead of listening to the counsel of the ego, we can now turn to the Guide within as to what to do, where to go, and how to perceive every situation. He is helping us to see everything that we experience in this world as not what it seems. We are turning to the Holy Spirit, asking for help to see everything in a new way. We acknowledge that the way we are thinking about any situation is simply keeping us from the love we are and keeping us from our inheritance, which is our joy and peace.
 
"The ego always speaks first." (T.6.IV.1.2) (ACIM OE T.6.V.45) The Holy Spirit is the Correction of the ego's version of everything. Recently, I experienced distress that my partner, who made a commitment to be home at a certain time, did not show up and did not call. It was particularly difficult because that same day I received a call from the hospital that my mother was being discharged, and I would have to pick her up. Managing this by myself seemed challenging and trying to connect with my partner on the cell phone was not successful. Needless to say, the ego spoke loudly about betrayal and injustice, which gave me justification to hold a grievance. I reminded myself that a healed mind would not react as I was reacting. So what was the basis for my grievance? When I inquired more deeply I realized that I felt alone, helpless, and unloved and I recognized that none of this was the truth. So, I turned to the Holy Spirit for help in forgiving myself for using this situation to keep me from my peace and happiness. I realized that I did not want to give the situation the power to disrupt my peace. I placed my belief in my aloneness, helplessness, and the belief that I was separate from love, onto my inner altar. I asked for help to see it all differently. While the ego continued to make some noise, ultimately, peace prevailed. I realized that I could make a choice for happiness. I was motivated and willing to turn my version of events over to the Holy Spirit for His interpretation.
 
Throughout the Course, Jesus reminds us that we made this world, yet here he says, "Think not you made the world. Illusions yes! But what is true in earth and Heaven is beyond your naming." (W.184.8.1-2) The real world is a reflection of reality. In other words, it is a reflection of Heaven. The real world is a state of true perception, which is still an illusion, but a helpful illusion much like forgiveness.
 
With each Lesson in Part I of this Workbook, false perception is being undone so we can learn that we have been wrong about everything. "And we are glad and thankful we were wrong." (W.184.15.4) We increasingly recognize that everything we have taught ourselves is wrong. As we become more and more willing to surrender what we think we know, we become more willing to be taught by one who truly knows. Now we ask to be shown the truth. We become willing to look honestly at our blocks to love, bring them to awareness, and give them over to the Holy Spirit to be shined away. Throughout the day, stay aware of how you use differences as a weapon against others. Commit to taking "intervals each day in which the learning of the world becomes a transitory phase; a prison house from which you go into the sunlight and forget the darkness," (W.184.10.1) if only for a moment, until the time of peace is extended more and more.

Love and blessings, Sarah 
huemmert@shaw.ca 

A Course in Miracles
TEXT
ACIM Original Edition
Chapter Sixteen

The Forgiveness of Illusions 

   Voice and Music by Martin Weber, CIMS SonShip Radio


VIII. The End of Illusion         
 
70 It is impossible to let the past go without relinquishing the special relationship. For the special relationship is an attempt to reenact the past and change it. Imagined slights, remembered pain, past disappointments, perceived injustices, and deprivations all enter into the special relationship, which becomes a way in which you seek to restore your wounded self-esteem. What basis would you have for choosing a special partner without the past? Every such choice is made because of something "evil" in the past to which you cling and for which must someone else atone.
 
71 The special relationship takes vengeance on the past. By seeking to remove suffering in the past, it overlooks the present in its preoccupation with the past and its total commitment to it. No special relationship is experienced in the present. Shades of the past envelop it and make it what it is. It has no meaning in the present, and if it means nothing now, it cannot have any real meaning at all. How can you change the past except in fantasy? And who can give you what you think the past deprived you of? The past is nothing. Do not seek to lay the blame for deprivation on it, for the past is gone. You cannot really not let go what has already gone. It must be, therefore, that you are maintaining the illusion that it has not gone because you think it serves some purpose that you want fulfilled. And it must also be that this purpose could not be fulfilled in the present, but only in the past.
 
72 Do not underestimate the intensity of the ego's drive for vengeance on the past. It is completely savage and completely insane. For the ego remembers everything that you have done which offended it and seeks retribution of you. The fantasies it brings to the special relationships it chooses in which to act out its hate are fantasies of your destruction. For the ego holds the past against you, and in your escape from the past, it sees itself deprived of the vengeance it believes that you so justly merit. Yet without your alliance in your own destruction, the ego could not hold you to the past.
 
73 In the special relationship, you are allowing your destruction to be. That this is insane is obvious. But what is less obvious to you is that the present is useless to you while you pursue the ego's goal as its ally. The past is gone; seek not to preserve it in the special relationship, which binds you to it and would teach you that salvation is past and that you must return to the past to find salvation. There is no fantasy which does not contain the dream of retribution for the past. Would you act out the dream or let it go?
 
74 In the special relationship, it does not seem to be an acting out of vengeance which you seek. And even when the hatred and the savagery break briefly through into awareness, the illusion of love is not profoundly shaken. Yet the one thing which the ego never allows to reach awareness is that the special relationship is the acting out of vengeance on yourself. But what else could it be? In seeking the special relationship, you look not for glory in yourself. You have denied that it is there, and the relationship becomes your substitute for it. And vengeance becomes your substitute for Atonement, and the escape from vengeance becomes your loss.
 
75 Against the ego's insane notion of salvation, the Holy Spirit gently lays the holy instant. We said before that the Holy Spirit must teach through comparisons and uses opposites to point to truth. The holy instant is the opposite of the ego's fixed belief in salvation through vengeance for the past. In the holy instant, it is accepted that the past is gone, and with its passing the drive for vengeance has been uprooted and has disappeared. The stillness and the peace of now enfolds you in perfect gentleness. Everything is gone except the truth.
 
76 For a time you may attempt to bring illusions into the holy instant to hinder your full awareness of the complete difference in all respects between your experience of truth and illusion. Yet you will not attempt this long. In the holy instant, the power of the Holy Spirit will prevail because you joined Him. The illusions you bring with you will weaken the experience of Him for a while and will prevent you from keeping the experience in your mind. Yet the holy instant is eternal, and your illusions of time will not prevent the timeless from being what it is nor you from experiencing it as it is.
 
77 What God has given you is truly given and will be truly received. For God's gifts have no reality apart from your receiving them. Your receiving completes His giving. You will receive because it is His Will to give. He gave the holy instant to be given you, and it is impossible that you receive it not, because He gave it. When He willed that His Son be free, His Son was free. In the holy instant is His reminder that His Son will always be exactly as he was created. And everything the Holy Spirit teaches you is to remind you that you have received what God has given you.
 
78 There is nothing you can hold against reality. All that must be forgiven are the illusions you have held against your brothers. Their reality has no past, and only illusions can be forgiven. God holds nothing against anyone, for He is incapable of illusions of any kind. Release your brothers from the slavery of their illusions by forgiving them for the illusions which you perceive in them. Thus will you learn that you have been forgiven, for it is you who offered them illusions. In the holy instant, this is done for you in time to bring to you the true condition of Heaven.
 
79 Remember that you always choose between truth and illusion-between the real Atonement which would heal and the ego's "atonement" which would destroy. The power of God and all His Love, without limit, will support you as you seek only your place in the plan of Atonement arising from His Love. Be an ally of God and not the ego in seeking how Atonement can come to you. His help suffices, for His Messenger understands how to restore the Kingdom to you and to place all your investment in salvation in your relationship with Him.
 
80 Seek and find his message in the holy instant, where all illusions are forgiven. From there the miracle extends to bless everyone and to resolve all problems, be they perceived as great or small, possible or impossible. There is nothing that will not give place to Him and to His majesty. To join in close relationship with Him is to accept relationships as real and through their reality to give over all illusions for the reality of your relationship with God. Praise be to your relationship with Him and to no other. The truth lies here and nowhere else. You choose this or nothing
 
  81 Forgive us our illusions, Father, and help us to accept our true relationship with You in which there are no illusions and where none can ever enter. Our holiness is Yours. What can there be in us that needs forgiveness when Yours is perfect? The sleep of forgetfulness is only the unwillingness to remember Your forgiveness and Your Love. Let us not wander into temptation, for the temptation of the Son of God is not Your Will. And let us receive only what you have given and accept but this into the minds which You created and which You love.  Amen.
 
    ~ The Original Handscript Notes

ACIM OE TX.CH 16.VIII       
 
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