Lesson 246
See Only What is Real
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35 Only mistakes have different forms, and so they can deceive. You can change form because it is not true. It could not be reality because it can be changed. Reason will tell you that, if form is not reality, it must be an illusion and is not there to see. And if you see it, you must be mistaken, for you are seeing what can not be real as if it were. What cannot see beyond what is not there must be distorted perception and must perceive illusions as the truth. Could it then recognize the truth?          
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What is the World
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   The world is false perception. It is born
   of error, and it has not left its source.
   It will remain no longer than the thought
   that gave it birth is cherished. When the thought
   of separation has been changed to one
   of true forgiveness, will the world be seen
   in quite another light; and one that leads
   to truth, where all the world must disappear,
   and all its errors vanish. Now its source
   has gone, and its effects are gone as well.
   The world was made as an attack on God.
   It symbolizes fear. And what is fear
   except love's absence? Thus the world was meant
   to be a place where God could enter not,
   and where His Son could be apart from Him.
   Here was perception born, for knowledge could
   not cause such insane thoughts. But eyes deceive,
   and ears hear falsely. Now mistakes become
   quite possible, for certainty has gone.
   The mechanisms of illusion have
   been born instead. And now they go to find
   what has been given them to seek. Their aim
   is to fulfill the purpose which the world
   was made to witness and make real. They see
   in its illusions but a solid base
   where truth exists, upheld apart from lies.
   Yet everything which they report is but
   illusion which is kept apart from truth.
   As sight was made to lead away from truth,
   it can be redirected. Sounds become
   the call of God. And all perception can
   be given a new purpose, by the One
   Whom God appointed Saviour to the world.
   Follow His light, and see the world as He
   beholds it. Hear His Voice alone in all
   that speaks to you. And let Him give you peace
   and certainty, which you have thrown away,
   but Heaven has preserved for you in Him.
   Let us not rest content until the world
   has joined our changed perception. Let us not
   be satisfied until forgiveness has
   been made complete. And let us not attempt
   to change our function. We must save the world.
   For we who made it must behold it through
   the eyes of Christ, that what was made to die
   can be restored to everlasting life.
         ~ Original Handscript of ACIM  

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SonShip Workbook
L e s s o n 246
To love my Father is to love His Son.

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   Let me not think that I can find the way  
   to God if I have hatred in my heart.
   Let me not try to hurt God's Son, and think
   that I can know his Father or my Self.
   Let me not fail to recognize myself,
   and still believe that my awareness can
   contain my Father, or my mind conceive
   of all the love my Father has for me,
   and all the love which I return to Him.
    I will accept the way You choose for me
    to come to You, my Father. For in that
    will I succeed, because it is Your Will.
    And I would recognize that what You will
    is what I will as well, and only that.
    And so I choose to love Your Son. Amen
      ~ Original Handscript of ACIM   
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ACIM Edmonton - Sarah's Reflections ACIM Edmonton, CA
To love my Father is to love His Son.

Sarah's Commentary:  
We may think that we can love God without loving our brothers, but it is clear that the only way to God is by extending love to our brothers. Extending love to our brothers means to forgive them for what they have not done to us. This will only make sense in the context that the world we seem to live in is illusory. It is only in the dream that what has been done seems to have effects because nothing here is real. "How weak is fear; how little and how meaningless. How insignificant before the quiet strength of those whom love has joined," (T.22.V.4.1-2) (ACIM OE T.22.VI.48) and love has joined us all. Now we must come to recognize our sameness.
To forgive is to release our judgments and interpretations so love can be extended through us to everyone we encounter or even think about. It is the only way our belief in guilt can be released. Forgiveness is the only way to recognize that what we think we have done has had no real effects, and thus we are forever innocent. We believe that we separated from God and left His Love and thus abandoned Him to make it on our own. We project this belief onto God, and now we see Him as having abandoned us! We do not want to take responsibility for what we have done so we blame God for not being there for us. We feel lost and alone in the world, thinking that we can never find our way back to our home in Him where we are safe and connected.
We can find our way back and reclaim our connection to God through forgiveness of our brothers; and we do so by taking back our projections onto others of everything that we had condemned in ourselves, but now see in our brothers. With vision, we see the innocence in our brothers, regardless of their behavior. In other words, we see who they really are. Jesus says that when we see one brother as innocent, we will generalize this to others. Then we come to realize that we are all the same. We all share the same one Self. Through forgiveness, we bring to awareness the love we are and thus remember God. We have not left our home in God, except in dreams, but we don't know that, and now believe that this existence we seem to be living is real and solid and that the truth is what seems to be illusory.
Jesus reminds us, "Never forget that the Sonship is your salvation, for the Sonship is your Self." (T.11.IV.1.1) (ACIM OE T.10.V.31) Our current experience is one of separation and, with it, the feeling that we are entirely on our own. We can only break this isolation through joining. To join is to recognize that we are One Mind. When we join with our brother, we are joining with God. It is not something we do, but something we are. We are already joined, but we must heal the judgments standing in the way of our Oneness. Jesus goes on to say, "Yet if you hate part of your Self [meaning another brother] all your understanding is lost, because you are looking on what God created as yourself without love." (T.11.IV.1.6) (ACIM OE T.10.V.31) Thus, we are making ourselves homeless by denying our Father. We project that denial onto God and believe He is denying us. We come to the Father today by offering gratitude and forgiveness to our brothers, which is how we find our way back to Him. Anything else keeps us in pain and keeps the love, which is always in the mind, from our awareness.
The only way we will ever know the love that is already in us is by extending it. Each time we extend forgiveness to a brother, we recognize the love we are. So how we think about ourselves is not how others see us but, indeed, how we see others. When we see them with vision, past all form, we come to know the Christ Self we are. The behavior they have exhibited toward us may still be there, but now the interpretation that we have given it has changed. We no longer see their attack as having anything to do with us. We no longer take any offense. What we saw as an attack, we no longer take personally. Their attack on us can only create a reaction if we already believe or fear that they are right about what they are saying about us. When our own self-attack is healed, we now see any attack as a call for love.
We can assess the kind of relationship we have with God through our relationships with our brothers. Any grievance I have with a brother is a grievance I have with God. Any betrayal I experience is my belief that God has betrayed me. Any separation I experience with a brother reflects my separation from God. When we attack anyone, it is based on our belief that we have attacked God and have succeeded. The ego is all about attack. Jesus teaches that the range of the ego is from suspicious to vicious. "The ego is therefore capable of suspiciousness at best and viciousness at worst." (T.9.VII.3.7) (ACIM OE T.9.VI.40) It only knows of attack because it is actually a thought of the original attack on God when we chose the ego thought system. We made the decision to hide from God in the body and in the world. Now we do not know what love is because it seems we have separated ourselves from love. Now, through healing with our brothers, we heal our mistaken thoughts about ourselves and about God.
Love cannot be known in this world. The closest reflection we have of love in this world is forgiveness. When we are the ones trying to love our brothers, we have put the ego in charge of the process. This is special love, which is the ego's most boasted gift and based on using the other to meet our perceived needs. In our special relationships, we extend love to our brothers in order to extract love from them in return.
We can easily see that this is not real love but only a socially accepted pseudo-love, which is actually special hate. How can we tell? "The ego establishes relationships only to get something. And it would keep the giver bound to itself through guilt. It is impossible for the ego to enter into any relationship without anger, for the ego believes that anger makes friends." (T.15.VII.2.1-3) (ACIM OE T.15.VIII.65) It cannot be otherwise, for our anger and resentment comes from belief in sacrifice. Look at the evidence in situations of divorce or separation. What once looked like love now becomes open hatred, distrust, and attack. Or look at how egos go on a rampage when the vestiges of civilized living break down as is the case of human tragedy on a wide scale. "Nice" people become survivors at any cost.
The seemingly "small" irritations, the angry thoughts, and the desire to retaliate are what we need to look at throughout the day. We need to look at the little scraps of hatred we direct at others and ourselves, which keep us from knowing the Christ Self we are. Salvation is in our minds, but we can only heal through our decision to watch the mind and stay vigilant against the thoughts that obscure the love we are. We need to be very honest with ourselves and willing to look behind our defenses at what we are hiding from ourselves. There are no small irritations. They cover over a deep level of self-attack.
The way we come to know the truth about ourselves is through healing our special relationships. Yes, there are other ways to God, but in this Lesson, Jesus tells us that this Course is the way chosen for us. "I will accept the way You choose for me to come to You, my Father." (W.246.2.1) It is His Will I come to Him, but notice that He does not impose His Will on us. He has given us the freedom to choose. Yet, when we come to see His Will is actually our will too and the source of our happiness, we will gladly surrender our investment in the separate self. When we commit to God, we accept His Will as ours and indeed choose to love the Son, who is our Self. As we release our brothers from the bondage of our grievances, we release ourselves. Healing through relationships is our chosen way home when we choose this Course as our path.
Today, let us set our intention for healing with any brother or sister who shows up in our thoughts, or those we encounter. Allow the light of holiness to shine on them through your forgiveness. Remember to start your day with the intention to ask for help to see each brother who crosses your mind, or your path, with the eyes of Christ. Notice any hatred you hold in your heart against them. Ask for God's help and affirm your decision to choose love today with every brother you meet or even think of. Connect with the silence within where the Holy Spirit dwells. Ask how you can be truly helpful to everyone you meet or think about. Remember your commitment each hour, and as often as you can in between, so that you can have a day of joy and peace. And when grievances show up, remind yourself that you are making a choice in that moment not to remember your love for God, which is not to remember your Self. Now we are called to choose again to surrender the blocks to love. To be afraid of love is not a sin but a mistake that can be corrected when we are ready.

Love and blessings, Sarah 
A Course in Miracles
ACIM Original Edition
Chapter Twenty Two

Salvation and the Holy Relationship 
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IV. Reason and the Holy Relationship 
29 The introduction of reason into the ego's thought system is the beginning of its undoing. For reason and the ego are contradictory. Nor is it possible for them to co-exist in your awareness. And reason's goal is to make plain and therefore obvious. You can see reason. This is not a play on words, for here is the beginning of a vision that has meaning. Vision is sense, quite literally. If it is not the body's sight, it must be understood. For it is plain, and what is obvious is not ambiguous. It can be understood. And here do reason and the ego separate to go their different ways.
30 The ego's whole continuance depends on its belief you cannot learn this course. Share this belief, and reason will be unable to see your errors and make way for their correction. For reason sees through errors, telling you what you thought was real is not. Reason can see the difference between sin and mistakes because it wants correction. Therefore, it tells you what you thought was uncorrectable can be corrected, and thus it must have been an error. The ego's opposition to correction leads to its fixed belief in sin and disregard of errors. It looks on nothing that can be corrected. Thus does the ego damn and reason save.
31 Reason is not salvation in itself, but it makes way for peace and brings you to a state of mind in which salvation can be given you. Sin is a block, set like a heavy gate, locked and without a key, across the road to peace. No one who looks on it without the help of reason would try to pass it. The body's eyes behold it as solid granite, so thick it would be madness to attempt to pass it. Yet reason sees through it easily because it is an error. The form it takes cannot conceal its emptiness from reason's eyes.
32 Only the form of error attracts the ego. Meaning it does not recognize and does not know if it is there or not. Everything which the body's eyes can see is a mistake, an error in perception, a distorted fragment of the whole, without the meaning that the whole would give. And yet mistakes, regardless of their form, can be corrected. Sin is but error in a special form the ego venerates. It would preserve all errors and make them sins. For here is its own stability, its heavy anchor in the shifting world it made-the rock on which its church is built and where its worshipers are bound to bodies and believe the body's freedom is their own.
33 Reason will tell you that the form of error is not what makes it a mistake. If what the form conceals is a mistake, the form cannot prevent correction. The body's eyes see only form. They cannot see beyond what they were made to see. And they were made to look on error and not see past it. Theirs is indeed a strange perception, for they can see only illusions, unable to look beyond the granite block of sin and stopping at the outside form of nothing. To this distorted form of vision, the outside of everything, the wall that stands between you and the truth, is wholly true. Yet how can sight which stops at nothingness as if it were a solid wall see truly? It is held back by form, having been made to guarantee that nothing else but form will be perceived.
34 These eyes, made not to see, will never see. For the idea they represent left not its maker, and it is their maker that sees through them. What was its maker's goal but not to see? For this the body's eyes are perfect means, but not for seeing. See how the body's eyes rest on externals and cannot go beyond. Watch how they stop at nothingness, unable to go beyond the form to meaning. Nothing's so blinding as perception of form. For sight of form means understanding has been obscured.
35 Only mistakes have different forms, and so they can deceive. You can change form because it is not true. It could not be reality because it can be changed. Reason will tell you that, if form is not reality, it must be an illusion and is not there to see. And if you see it, you must be mistaken, for you are seeing what can not be real as if it were. What cannot see beyond what is not there must be distorted perception and must perceive illusions as the truth. Could it then recognize the truth?
36 Let not the form of his mistakes keep you from him whose holiness is yours. Let not the vision of his holiness, the sight of which would show you your forgiveness, be kept from you by what the body's eyes can see. Let your awareness of your brother not be blocked by your perception of his sins and of his body. What is there in him that you would attack except what you associate with his body, which you believe can sin? Beyond his errors is his holiness and your salvation. You gave him not his holiness but tried to see your sins in him to save yourself. And yet his holiness is your forgiveness. Can you be saved by making sinful the one whose holiness is your salvation?
37 A holy relationship, however newly born, must value holiness above all else. Unholy values will produce confusion, and in awareness. In an unholy relationship, each one is valued because he seems to justify the other's sin. He sees within the other what impels him to sin against his will. And thus he lays his sins upon the other and is attracted to him to perpetuate his sins. And so it must become impossible for each to see himself as causing sin by his desire to have sin real. Yet reason sees a holy relationship as what it is-a common state of mind, where both give errors gladly to correction that both may happily be healed as one.

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