Lesson 203
Heaven is Within
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
CH 18 THE DREAM AND THE REALITY
VII. DREAMS AND THE BODY   
    
49 There is nothing outside you. That is what you must ultimately learn, for it is in that realization that the Kingdom of Heaven is restored to you. For God created only this, and He did not depart from it nor leave it separate from Himself. The Kingdom of Heaven is the dwelling-place of the Son of God, who left not his Father and dwells not apart from Him. Heaven is not a place nor a condition. It is merely an awareness of perfect Oneness and the knowledge that there is nothing else; nothing outside this Oneness and nothing else within.     
A COURSE IN MIRACLES
WORKBOOK Part I
REVIEW VI
Part I Review V
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Voice and Music by CIMS SonShip Radio

*IAMBIC PENTAMETER*
WHAT IS IAMBIC PENTAMETER?
 
   With this review, we take but one idea
   each day, and practice it as often as
   is possible. Besides the time we give
   morning and evening, which should not be less
   than fifteen minutes, and the hourly
   remembrances we make throughout the day,
   use the idea as often as you can
   between them. Each of these ideas alone
   would be sufficient for salvation, if
   it is learned truly. Each would be enough
   to give release to you and to the world
   from every form of bondage, and invite
   the memory of God to come again.
 
   With this in mind, we start our practicing
   in which we carefully review the thoughts
   the Holy Spirit has bestowed on us
   in our last twenty lessons. Each contains
   the whole curriculum, if understood,
   practiced, accepted and applied to all
   the seeming happenings throughout the day.
   One is enough. But for that one there must
   be no exceptions made. And so we need
   to use them all, and let them blend as one
   as each contributes to the whole we learn.
 
   These practice lessons, like our last review,
   are centered round a central theme with which
   we start and end each lesson. It is this:
 
   " I am not a body. I am free.
      For I am still as God created me."
 
   The day begins and ends with this. And we
   repeat it every time the hour strikes,
   or we remember, in between, we have
   a function that transcends the world we see.
   Beyond this and a repetition of
   the special thought we practice for the day,
   no form of exercise is urged, except
   a deep relinquishing of everything
   that clutters up your mind, and makes it deaf
   to reason, sanity and simple truth.
 
   We will attempt to get beyond all words
   and special forms of practicing for this
   review. For we attempt this time to reach
   a quickened pace along a shorter path
   to the serenity and peace of God.
   We merely close our eyes, and then forget
   all that we thought we saw and understood.
   For thus is freedom given us from all
   we did not know and failed to understand.
 
   There is but one exception to this lack
   of structuring. Permit no idle thought
   to go unchallenged. If you notice one,
   deny its hold and hasten to assure
   your mind that this is not what it would have.
   Then gently let the thought which you denied
   be given up in sure and quick exchange
   for the idea we practice for the day.
 
   When you are tempted, hasten to proclaim
   your freedom from temptation, as you say:
 
   " This thought I do not want. I choose instead..."
 
   And then repeat the idea for the day,
   and let it take the place of what you thought.
   Beyond such special applications of
   each day's idea, we will add but few
   formal expressions for specific thoughts
   to aid your practicing. Instead we give
   these times of quiet to the Teacher Who
   instructs in quiet, speaks of peace, and gives
   our thoughts whatever meaning they may have.
 
   To Him I offer this review for you.
   I place you in His charge, and let Him teach
   you what to do and say and think each time
   you turn to Him. He will not fail to be
   available to you each time you call
   to Him to help you. Let us offer Him
   the whole review we now begin, and let
   us also not forget to Whom it has
   been given, as we practice, day by day,
   advancing toward the goal He set for us;
   allowing Him to teach us how to go,
   and trusting Him completely for the way
   each practice period can best become
   a loving gift of freedom to the world. 
      
      ~ Original Handscript of ACIM September 1, 1970

  
CIRCLE OF ATONEMENT ~ COMMENTARY
          
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DAILY LESSON
SonShip Workbook
L e s s o n 203
 
<AUDIO><VIDEO>
Voice and Music by CIMS SonShip Radio
 
I am not a body. I am free.
For I am still as God created me.
  
[183] I call upon God's name and on my own.

The name of God is my deliverance 
from every thought of evil and of sin, 
because it is my own as well His.

I am not a body. I am free. 
For I am still as God created me . 
 
 
          
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ACIM Edmonton - Sarah's Reflections 
ACIM Edmonton, CA
LESSON 203 Review VI

[183] I call upon God's name and on my own.

Sarah's Commentary:   

Each of our last twenty Lessons includes the whole curriculum. When we have an experience of the holy instant-miracle with any one of these Lessons, it is generalized to all Lessons. Each Lesson contributes to remind us who we are as a mind-spirit and not a body.
 
When we observe this conditioned mind, which has been deceived into believing it is separate from others and living in a body, we become more and more aware of the values, beliefs, and concepts we hold about ourselves. We have come to believe what our parents, teachers, and friends, told us about ourselves. While there are some aspects of what they told us that we have discarded, there are other things still playing in our subconscious minds. By looking at the thoughts, beliefs, and self-concepts we hold, we can begin to question their reality. As Byron Katie asks, "Is this the truth?" "Can you absolutely know it is the truth?" "How do you feel when you think this about yourself?" "Who would you be without that thought?"
 
We believe there is a world we came to at our birth. Now we are convinced we live in this world of form and it continues to define us. We identify with the body, believe we are lacking, and need to pursue things in the world to make us happy. Since we feel we are at the mercy of events and circumstances outside of ourselves, we feel victimized and betrayed by the world. As we become aware of these thoughts, we accept responsibility for them and recognize we have the power within to choose to let them go. It is the power of the Holy Spirit within the mind. Our part is to be vigilant of our thoughts and to bring them to awareness, realizing we are responsible for the way we interpret every event and circumstance. Now we can bring our interpretations and perceptions to the Holy Spirit, realizing we are wrong about everything we see and willing to be shown another way.
 
I am finding it very helpful to work daily with the Rules for Decision. (T30.I) (ACIM OE T.30.II) The day starts by affirming, "Today I will make no decisions by myself." (T.30.I.2.2) "But think about the kind of day you want, and tell yourself there is a way in which this very day can happen just like that." (T.30.I.1.8) (ACIM OE T.30.II.2) The fact is we can't make decisions by ourselves. They are always made with the ego or the Holy Spirit. When we choose the Holy Spirit as our Guide throughout the day, we give up our own ideas and our judgment about what we should do. It also means ". . . you will not judge the situations where you will be called upon to make response. For if you judge them, you have set the rules for how you should react to them." (T.30.I.2.4-5) (ACIM OE T.30.II.5) The problem, according to Jesus, is ". . . you still make up your mind, and then decide to ask what you should do." (T.30.I.3.2) (ACIM OE T.30.II.6) Throughout the day, it is helpful to take moments of reflection, and ". . . tell yourself again the kind of day you want; the feelings you would have, the things you want to happen to you, and the things you would experience," (T.30.I.4.1) (ACIM OE T.30.II.7) and then to remember, "If I make no decisions by myself, this is the day that will be given me." (T.30.I.4.2) (ACIM OE T.30.II.8)
 
As we call upon God's Name and remember our union with Him, it opens the way to the surrender all of our own plans and decisions and to rest in Him, relying on His Voice to guide us throughout the day. In the Manual for Teachers, Jesus tells us power, fame, money, physical pleasure, and all the things we pursue in the world, mean a lot to the body, but what would a mind need from all of this? The mind only strives for these things if it confuses itself with the body. Once we put our belief into our bodily existence, we lose sight of our reality as the Christ Self. This Lesson affirms our reality as an extension of God. As we bring our thoughts of sin, guilt, and fear forward, we can release them to the Name of God, and only then can we have an experience of our true identity. Today, we take the thoughts that hurt us and put them on the inner altar, where the healing happens. We are not our own healers. We simply rely on the healing power of the Holy Spirit within. If healing does not happen, it is only because our willingness to release the painful thoughts is weak. We may still be holding onto the thoughts and beliefs rather than truly giving them over; or we may willingly put them on the altar, but then take them back as the mind starts, once again, to obsess about a difficult situation. It does not matter. The practice we employ is to give the thoughts over again and again, as they come up.
 
Today, we look at every opportunity that shows up for us in the events and activities of the day. They are all important to our practice of forgiveness. We apply the teaching given us in each of these Lessons to specific experiences in our lives. All of these events in our day serve the Holy Spirit's curriculum, which is for the healing of the mind. "The Holy Spirit teaches you to use what the ego has made, to teach the opposite of what the ego has 'learned'." (T.7.IV.3.3) (ACIM OE T.7.IV.22) It can be said that nothing is happening to us, but it is all for us. What can be more important to us in our day than to shift the mind to what the Holy Spirit would have us recognize? Paying attention to the activity of the mind, where we judge, defend and attack, is essential. We stay focused on watching the mind and giving over everything we have learned to the Holy Spirit.
 
Today we put our attention on this quiet center in our minds, where the experience of God and Oneness resides, so we can have respite from this world if only for an instant, as a result of a moment of deliverance from the seeming demands of this world.
 
Love and Blessings, Sarah 
ACIM Original Edition
VII. Dreams and the Body

49 There is nothing outside you. That is what you must ultimately learn, for it is in that realization that the Kingdom of Heaven is restored to you. For God created only this, and He did not depart from it nor leave it separate from Himself. The Kingdom of Heaven is the dwelling-place of the Son of God, who left not his Father and dwells not apart from Him. Heaven is not a place nor a condition. It is merely an awareness of perfect Oneness and the knowledge that there is nothing else; nothing outside this Oneness and nothing else within.
 
50 What could God give but knowledge of Himself? What else is there to give? The belief that you could give and get something else, something outside yourself, has cost you the awareness of Heaven and the loss of your Identity. And you have done a stranger thing than you yet realize. You have displaced your guilt to your bodies from your minds. Yet a body cannot be guilty, for it can do nothing of itself. You who think you hate your bodies deceive yourselves. You hate your minds, for guilt has entered into them, and they would remain separate, which they cannot do.
 
51 Minds are joined; bodies are not. Only by assigning to the mind the properties of the body does separation seem to be possible. And it is mind that seems to be fragmented and private and alone. Its guilt, which keeps it separate, is projected to the body, which suffers and dies because it is attacked, to hold the separation in the mind and let it not know its identity. Mind cannot attack, but it can make fantasies and direct the body to act them out. Yet it is never what the body does that seems to satisfy. Unless the mind believes the body is actually acting out its fantasies, it will attack the body by increasing the projection of its guilt upon it.
 
52 In this, the mind is clearly delusional. It cannot attack, but it maintains it can and uses what it does to hurt the body to prove it can. The mind cannot attack, but it can deceive itself. And this is all it does when it believes it has attacked the body. It can project its guilt, but it will not lose it through projection. And though it clearly can misperceive the function of the body, it cannot change its function from what the Holy Spirit establishes it to be. The body was not made by love. Yet love does not condemn it and can use it lovingly, respecting what the Son of God has made and using it to save him from illusions.
 
53 Would you not have the instruments of separation reinterpreted as means for salvation and used for purposes of love? Would you not welcome and support the shift from fantasies of vengeance to release from them? Your perception of the body can clearly be sick, but project not this upon the body. For your wish to make destructive what cannot destroy can have no real effect at all. And what God created is only what He would have it be, being His Will. You cannot make His Will destructive. You can make fantasies in which your will conflicts with His, but that is all.
 
54 It is insane to use the body as the scapegoat for guilt, directing its attack and blaming it for what you wished it to do. It is impossible to act out fantasies. For it is still the fantasies you want, and they have nothing to do with what the body does. It does not dream of them, and they but make it a liability where it could be an asset. For fantasies have made your body your "enemy," weak, vulnerable, and treacherous, worthy of the hate which you invest in it. How has this served you? You have identified with this thing you hate, the instrument of vengeance and the perceived source of your guilt. You have done this to a thing that has no meaning, proclaiming it to be the dwelling-place of the Son of God and turning it against him.
 
55 This is the host of God that you have made. And neither God nor His most holy Son can enter an abode which harbors hate and where you have sown the seeds of vengeance, violence, and death. This thing you made to serve your guilt stands between you and other minds. The minds are joined, but you do not identify with them. You see yourself locked in a separate prison, removed and unreachable, incapable of reaching out as being reached. You hate this prison you have made and would destroy it. But you would not escape from it, leaving it unharmed, without your guilt upon it.
 
56 Yet only thus can you escape. The home of vengeance is not yours; the place you set aside to house your hate is not a prison but an illusion of yourself. The body is a limit imposed on the universal communication which is an eternal property of mind. But the communication is internal. [It is not made up of different parts which reach each other.] Mind reaches to itself. It does not go out. Within itself it has no limits, and there is nothing outside it. [It encompasses everything.] It encompasses you entirely; you within it, and it within you. There is nothing else, anywhere or ever.
 
57 The body is outside you, and but seems to surround you, shutting you off from others and keeping you apart from them [and them from you]. It is not there. There is no barrier between God and His Son, nor can His Son be separated from himself except in illusions. This is not his reality, though he believes it is. Yet this could only be if God were wrong. God would have had to create differently and to have separated Himself from His Son to make this possible. He would have had to create different things and to establish different orders of reality, only some of which were love. Yet love must be forever like itself, changeless forever and forever without alternative. And so it is. You cannot put a barrier around yourself because God placed none between Himself and you.
 
58 You can stretch out your hand and reach to Heaven. You whose hands are joined have begun to reach beyond the body, but not outside yourselves, to reach your shared Identity together. Could this be outside you? Where God is not? Is He a body, and did He create you as He is not and where He cannot be? You are surrounded only by Him. What limit can there be on you whom He encompasses? Everyone has experienced what he would call a sense of being transported beyond himself. This feeling of liberation far exceeds the dream of freedom sometimes experienced in special relationships. It is a sense of actual escape from limitations.
 
59 If you will consider what this "transportation" really entails, you will realize that it is a sudden unawareness of the body and a joining of yourself and something else in which your mind enlarges to encompass it. It becomes part of you as you unite with it. And both become whole as neither is perceived as separate. What really happens is that you have given up the illusion of a limited awareness and lost your fear of union. The love that instantly replaces it extends to what has freed you and unites with it. And while this lasts, you are not uncertain of your Identity and would not limit it. You have escaped from fear to peace, asking no questions of reality but merely accepting it. You have accepted this instead of the body and have let yourself be one with something beyond it simply by not letting your mind be limited by it.
 
60 This can occur regardless of the physical distance which seems to be between you and what you join, of your respective positions in space, and of your differences in size and seeming quality. Time is not relevant; it can occur with something past, present, or anticipated. The "something" can be anything and anywhere-a sound, a sight, a thought, a memory, and even a general idea without specific reference. Yet in every case, you joined it without reservation because you love it and would be with it. And so you rush to meet it, letting your limits melt away, suspending all the "laws" your body obeys and gently setting them aside.
 
61 There is no violence at all in this escape. The body is not attacked, but simply properly perceived. It does not limit you merely because you would not have it so. You are not really "lifted out" of it; it cannot contain you. You go where you would be, gaining, not losing, a sense of self. In these instants of release from physical restrictions, you experience much of what happens in the holy instant; the lifting of the barriers of time and space, the sudden experience of peace and joy, and, above all, the lack of awareness of the body and of the questioning whether or not all this is possible.
 
62 It is possible because you want it. The sudden expansion of the self which takes place with your desire for it is the irresistible appeal the holy instant holds. It calls to you to be yourself within its safe embrace. There are the laws of limit lifted for you, to welcome you to openness of mind and freedom. Come to this place of refuge, where you can be yourself in peace. Not through destruction, not through a "breaking out," but merely by a quiet "melting in." For peace will join you there simply because you have been willing to let go the limits you have placed upon love and joined it where it is and where it led you in answer to its gentle call to be at peace.
   
 

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