Lesson 214
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Temple of Healing
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
CH 19 BEYOND THE BODY
IV. THE UNREALITY SIN  
    
36 Look upon your Redeemer and behold what He would show you in each other, and let not sin arise again to blind your eyes. For sin would keep you separate, but your Redeemer would have you look upon each other as yourself. Your relationship is now a temple of healing-a place where all the weary ones can come and find rest. Here is the rest that waits for all after the journey. And it is brought nearer to all by your relationship.

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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
WORKBOOK Part I
REVIEW VI
Review VI
<AUDIO><VIDEO> 
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 214
  
Voice and Music by CIMS SonShip Radio

I am not a body. I am free.
For I am still as God created me.
  
[194]
I place the future in the hands of God. 
 
The past is gone; the future is not yet.
Now am I freed from both. For what God gives
can only be for good. And I accept
the way I am set free. And so I choose
but what He gives as what belongs to me.    

I am not a body. I am free. 
For I am still as God created me .

~ Original Handscript of ACIM
 
  
          
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ACIM Edmonton - Sarah's Reflections 
ACIM Edmonton, CA
LESSON 214 Review VI

[194] I place the future in the hands of God.

Sarah's Commentary:   

Chapter 18 VI (ACIM OE VII) describes the ego strategy, very clearly telling us that the ego made up a story of our sin and told us it was so horrific we must flee into the body to try to escape from what we have done. "And you have done a stranger thing than you yet realize. You have displaced your guilt to your body from your mind. Yet a body cannot be guilty, for it can do nothing of itself." (T.18.VI.2.4-6) (ACIM OE T.18.VII.50) This guilt comes from our belief we have sinned, but now we try to protect the mind from this thought, which is why the guilt in the mind is projected onto the body. It is all part of a carefully contrived strategy to confuse us about ourselves and to make us believe we are a body and not a Child of God. The ego does not want us to remember our identity as Christ, because that would be the demise of its thought system and the end of our identity, as we currently know it to be.
 
Presently, we think the body is the problem. It is not good enough, not smart enough, not healthy enough, seems to make demands on us, gets sick, ages, and dies; but it is not who we are. It was made to put all of our attention outside the mind, making us think we are these bodies. The body was given senses to prove there is a world out there, external to us, and to make us forget it is nothing. Our reality is only mind, and this is all a dream. We see ourselves as victims of events beyond our control, over which we have no power. This story of our sin and guilt, which the ego made up, is kept hidden by our decision not to look at its source in the mind. We can exercise choice once we become aware of the ego's strategy.
 
In Chapter 18 VII (ACIM OE 18 VIII) "I Need Do Nothing," we are told we still have too much faith in the body as a source of strength. All our plans, in one way or another, involve the body, its comfort, its protection, and its enjoyment. Much time and attention goes into taking care of this body, washing it, feeding it, pampering it, exercising it, resting it, and pleasuring it. It becomes the focus of all our attention. In this way, the body becomes an end in itself and not the means. It becomes the entire focus of our existence instead of the means as a useful tool for communicating love. What is startling to remember is the body does not exist at all in the present moment. It is always remembered or anticipated. It is why, when we enter the present, the NOW, the body is forgotten. It is nothing and nowhere. In the experience of the holy instant we have a glimpse of the eternal formless Self that is our reality.
 
In Chapter 18 VIII, (ACIM OE IX) Jesus tells us the body is a limit on love. The belief in limited love was the origin of the body. It was made to limit the unlimited. "The body is a tiny fence around a little part of a glorious and complete idea." (T.18.VIII.2.5) (ACIM OE T.18.IX.72) It is in this complete idea where we join with Truth. In the experience of the holy instant, the body is forgotten.
 
What keeps us from this experience? We say we want it yet there is resistance, but Jesus tells us, "Release is given you the instant you desire it." (T.18.VII.4.3) (ACIM OE T.18.VIII.66) Our desire determines our release. "Now you must learn that only infinite patience produces immediate effects." (T.5.VI.12.1) (ACIM OE T.5.VIII.81) It is not something we need to strive for. The truth is we are, in this very moment, in a state of infinite bliss and love, and the reason we need do nothing is there is nothing we can do to change the truth about ourselves. Who we are is always with us as our reality. We have just forgotten, but we are now preparing our minds to remember. We do so by removing the blocks to love, which is about bringing all of our misperceptions to awareness and taking responsibility for them without judging ourselves.
 
"In silence and in true humility I seek God's glory, to behold it in the Son whom He created as my Self." (W.211.1.2) Humility means we let go of our plans and our intentions on how to achieve the holy instant. We don't know, and that is a relief. We can leave it all in God's Hands. As Jesus reminds us, "You have been wrong in thinking that it is needful to prepare yourself for Him. It is impossible to make arrogant preparations for holiness, and not believe that it is up to you to establish the conditions for peace." (T.18.IV.4.3-4) (ACIM OE T.18.V.35) "To do nothing is to rest, and make a place within you where the activity of the body ceases to demand attention." (T.18.VII.7.7) (ACIM OE T.18.VIII.69) It is a ". . . quiet center of the storm." (T.18.VII.8.2) (ACIM OE T.18.VIII.70) It is a place free of thoughts, free of guilt, and free of projection. It is where we simply rest in God. Ah, there is such sweet release from demands we place on ourselves and such sweet release from our relentless thoughts in the ego mind.
 
Think about what keeps you out of peace. For me, it is these relentless thoughts that go around and around, regurgitating past events, focusing on events that keep me feeling guilty, planning for future events, gnawing on what has seemingly happened or should happen, and strategizing and fantasizing on how I want things to be. It is not a peaceful state. It produces stress as a result of the mind being obsessively occupied.
 
So what does it mean to place the future in the Hands of God? Fundamental to this is trust. In the Manual for Teachers, we are told trust is the foundation on which our ability to fulfill our function rests. We are told not to trust in the laws the world made up, but to be governed by the power of God's laws. However, we need an experience of this power in order to develop this trust. Once we do, we will no longer rely as readily on our own petty strength. "Who would attempt to fly with the tiny wings of the sparrow when the mighty power of an eagle has been given him?" (M.4.I.2.2) No matter how impressed we get with our own power to manifest, which reflects our own strong desires, it can never match the power available to us when we join with God's Will.
 
How do we develop this kind of trust? The process we go through is one of undoing and sorting the valuable from the valueless, and ultimately, "It takes great learning to understand that all things, events, encounters and circumstances are helpful." (M.4.I.A.4.5) Does it feel to you, in your life that all events, encounters, and circumstances are helpful? Probably not. Some things seem bad and some we label as good. Yet in the Lesson yesterday, we learned "All things are lessons God would have me learn." (W.193) It is the judgments we make about the events of our lives that hurt us. If we turn the judgments over and learn forgiveness is the answer to all trials and tribulations, we will experience a miracle. We will see every experience providing us with an opportunity to heal our thoughts and see there is a miracle the Holy Spirit offers us in every situation, no matter how it might appear.
 
In the section called "The Test of Truth", Chapter 14 XI (ACIM OE VII), Jesus tells us how we can tell the difference between the ego and the Holy Spirit. "You have one test, as sure as God, by which to recognize if what you learned is true. If you are wholly free of fear of any kind, and if all those who meet or even think of you share in your perfect peace, then you can be sure that you have learned God's lesson, and not your own." (T.14.XI.5.1-2) (ACIM OE T.14.VII.63) Don't we spend hours trying to figure out what some event or circumstance in our lives means? Don't we look for answers for our lives in every corner of our mind? Yet the only answer is peace. The only answer is to surrender into God. Every problem will dissipate, or if not, it will look very different to us from this place of release. "Perhaps it will be helpful to remember that no one can be angry at a fact. It is always an interpretation that gives rise to negative emotions, regardless of their seeming justification by what appears as facts." (M.17.4.1-2) Now, whatever situation is there in front of us, if there is something to be done, we will be guided and proceed from a place of peace.
 
As Jesus reminds us, "Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all of the barriers within yourself that you have built against it. It is not necessary to seek for what is true, but it is necessary to seek for what is false." (T.16.IV.6.1-2) (ACIM OE T.16.V.32) It is all about undoing our guilt. It is all about clearing the dark clouds that obscure the truth about ourselves. We must refuse to teach ourselves, and instead, we must release ourselves from the belief that we know the answers for our awakening. "You are still convinced that your understanding is a powerful contribution to the truth, and makes it what it is." (T.18.IV.7.5) (ACIM OE T.18.V.39) We must become as little children who don't know and agree to release our own thoughts and to be taught. Whenever our peace is threatened, it is helpful to remember, "I do not know what anything, including this, means. And so I do not know how to respond to it. And I will not use my own past learning as the light to guide me now." (T.14.XI.6.7-9) (ACIM OE T.14. VII.65)
 
We need help to set aside our ego thought system, and we must be willing to ask. In T.18.IV (ACIM OE T.18.V) "The Little Willingness," Jesus is talking about preparing our minds for the Holy Instant. "You prepare your mind for it only to the extent of recognizing that you want it above all else. It is not necessary that you do more; indeed, it is necessary that you realize that you cannot do more. Do not attempt to give the Holy Spirit what He does not ask, or you will add the ego to Him and confuse the two." (T.18.IV.1.4-6) (ACIM OE T.V.32) We think we need to do more. To do more is only to add the ego into the mix.
 
Today, we look at our insane thought system again, where we believe our sins of the past deserve punishment. Our belief that we deserve suffering is now put to question. As we do the forgiveness work, we are told, "And you will see by your experience that you have laid the past and present in His Hands as well, because the past will punish you no more, and future dread will now be meaningless." (W.194.4-6)
 
Today, we step back from our beliefs and look at them from outside of this dream and see they make no sense. If God is love, the ego's lies that tell us He brings punishment and death cannot be true. Being miserable and unhappy is the proof the ego gives that God is behind it all, but it is the defense we hold against the truth. Now we can look at this with the Holy Spirit, question how the ego has set all of this up, and make another choice.

Love and Blessings, Sarah 
ACIM Original Edition
IV. The Unreality of Sin

25 The attraction of guilt is found in sin, not error. Sin will be repeated because of this attraction. Fear can become so acute that the sin is denied the acting out, but while the guilt remains attractive the mind will suffer and not let go of the idea of sin. For guilt still calls to it, and the mind hears it and yearns for it, making itself a willing captive to its sick appeal. Sin is an idea of evil that cannot be corrected and will be forever desirable. As an essential part of what the ego thinks you are, you will always want it. And only an avenger with a mind unlike your own could stamp it out through fear.
 
26 The ego does not think it possible that love, not fear, is really called upon by sin and always answers. For the ego brings sin to fear, demanding punishment. Yet punishment is but another form of guilt's protection, for what is deserving punishment must have been really done. Punishment is always the great preserver of sin, treating it with respect and honoring its enormity. [What must be punished must be true. And what is true must be eternal and will be repeated endlessly.] For what you think is real you want and will not let it go. An error, on the other hand, is not attractive. What you see clearly as a mistake you want corrected.
 
27 Sometimes a sin can be repeated over and over with obviously distressing results but without the loss of its appeal. And suddenly you change its status from a sin to a mistake. Now you will not repeat it; you will merely stop and let it go unless the guilt remains. For then you will but change the form of sin, granting that it was an error but keeping it uncorrectable. This is not really a change in your perception, for it is sin that calls for punishment, not error. The Holy Spirit cannot punish sin. Mistakes He recognizes and would correct them all as God entrusted Him to do. But sin He knows not, nor can He recognize mistakes which cannot be corrected. For a mistake which cannot be corrected is meaningless to Him.
 
28 Mistakes are for correction, and they call for nothing else. What calls for punishment must call for nothing. Every mistake must be a call for love. What, then, is sin? What could it be but a mistake you would keep hidden-a call for help that you would keep unheard and thus unanswered? In time the Holy Spirit clearly sees the Son of God can make mistakes. On this you share His vision. Yet you do not share His recognition of the difference between time and eternity. And when correction is completed, time is eternity.
 
29 Time is like a downward spiral which seems to travel down from a long, unbroken line along another plane but which in no way breaks the line or interferes with its smooth continuousness. Along the spiral, it seems as if the line must have been broken. Yet at the line, its wholeness is apparent. Everything seen from the spiral is misperceived, but as you approach the line, you realize that it was not affected by the drop into another plane at all. Yet from the plane, the line seems discontinuous. And this is but an error in perception which can be easily corrected in the mind, although the body's eyes will see no change. The eyes see many things the mind corrects, and you respond, not to the eyes' illusions, but to the mind's corrections.
 
30 You see the line as broken, and as you shift to different aspects of the spiral, the line looks different. Yet in your mind is One Who knows it is unbroken and forever changeless. This One can teach you how to look on time differently and see beyond it, but not while you believe in sin. In error, yes; for this can be corrected by the mind. But sin is the belief that your perception is unchangeable and that the mind must accept as true what it is told through it. If it does not obey, the mind is judged insane. The only power which could change perception is thus kept impotent, held to the body by the fear of changed perception which its teacher, who is one with it, would bring.
 
31 When you are tempted to believe that sin is real, remember this: If sin is real, both God and you are not. If creation is extension, the Creator must have extended Himself, and it is impossible that what is part of Him is totally unlike the rest. If sin is real, God must be at war with Himself. He must be split and torn between good and evil-partly sane and partially insane. For He must have created what wills to destroy Him and has the power to do so. Is it not easier to believe that you have been mistaken than to believe in this?
 
32 While you believe that your reality or your brother's is bounded by a body, you will believe in sin. While you believe that bodies can unite, you will find guilt attractive and believe that sin is precious. For the belief that bodies limit mind leads to a perception of the world in which the proof of separation seems to be everywhere. And God and His creation seem to be split apart and overthrown. For sin would prove what God created holy could not prevail against it nor remain itself before the power of sin. Sin is perceived as mightier than God, before which God Himself must bow and offer His creation to its conqueror. Is this humility or madness?
 
33 If sin were real, it would forever be beyond the hope of healing. For there would be a power beyond God's, capable of making another will which could attack His Will and overcome it and give His Son a will apart from His and stronger. And each part of God's fragmented creation would have a different will, opposed to His and in eternal opposition to Him and to each other. Your holy relationship has as its purpose now the goal of proving this is impossible. Heaven has smiled upon it, and the belief in sin has been uprooted in its smile of love. You see it still because you do not realize that its foundation has gone. Its source has been removed, and so it can be cherished but a little while before it vanishes. Only the habit of looking for it still remains.
 
34 And yet you look with Heaven's smile upon your lips and Heaven's blessing on your sight. You will not see it long. For in the new perception, the mind corrects it when it seems to be seen, and it becomes invisible. And errors are quickly recognized and quickly given to correction to be healed, not hidden. You will be healed of sin and all its ravages the instant that you give it no power over each other. And you will help each other overcome mistakes by joyously releasing one another from the belief in sin.
 
35 In the holy instant, you will see the smile of heaven shining on both of you. And you will shine upon each other in glad acknowledgment of the grace that has been given you. For sin will not prevail against a union Heaven has smiled upon. Your perception was healed in the holy instant Heaven gave you. Forget what you have seen and raise your eyes in faith to what you now can see. The barriers to heaven will disappear before your holy sight, for you who were sightless have been given vision, and you can see. Look not for what has been removed but for the glory that has been restored for you to see.
 
36 Look upon your Redeemer and behold what He would show you in each other, and let not sin arise again to blind your eyes. For sin would keep you separate, but your Redeemer would have you look upon each other as yourself. Your relationship is now a temple of healing-a place where all the weary ones can come and find rest. Here is the rest that waits for all after the journey. And it is brought nearer to all by your relationship.
 
37 As this peace extends from deep inside yourselves to embrace all the Sonship and give it rest, it will encounter many obstacles. Some of them you will try to impose. Others will seem to arise from elsewhere-from your brothers and from various aspects of the world outside. Yet peace will gently cover them, extending past completely unhindered. The extension of the Holy Spirit's purpose from your relationship to others to bring them gently in [has already begun. This is the way in which He will bring means and goal in line. The peace He laid deep within both of you] will quietly extend to every aspect of your lives, surrounding both of you with glowing happiness and the calm awareness of complete protection. And you will carry its message of love and safety and freedom to everyone who draws nigh unto your temple, where healing waits for him.
 
38 You will not wait to give him this, for you will call to him and he will answer you, recognizing in your call the Call of God. And you will draw him in and give him rest, as it was given you. All this will you do. Yet the peace which already lies deeply within must first expand and flow across the obstacles you placed before it. This will you do, for nothing undertaken with the Holy Spirit remains unfinished. You can indeed be sure of nothing you see outside you, but of this you can be sure: the Holy Spirit asks that you offer Him a resting-place where you will rest in Him. He answered you and entered your relationship. Would you not now return His graciousness and enter into a relationship with Him? For it is He Who offered your relationship the gift of holiness, without which it would have been forever impossible to appreciate each other.
 
39 The gratitude you owe to Him He asks but that you receive for Him. And when you look with gentle graciousness upon each other, you are beholding Him. For you are looking where He is and not apart from Him. You cannot see the Holy Spirit, but you can see your brothers truly. And the light in them will show you all that you need to see. When the peace in you has been extended to encompass everyone, the Holy Spirit's function here will be accomplished. What need is there for seeing then? When God has taken the last step Himself, the Holy Spirit will gather all your thanks and gratitude which you have offered Him and lay them gently before His Creator in the name of His most holy Son. And the Father will accept them in His Name. What need is there of seeing in the presence of His gratitude?

 

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