Lesson 262
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Your Holiness Belongs to Him
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
 
CH 24 "SPECIALNESS AND SEPARATION"
VIII. THE MEETING PLACE     
  
63 The memory of God shines not alone. What is within your brother still contains all of creation, everything created and creating, born and unborn as yet, still in the future or apparently gone by. What is in him is changeless, and your changelessness is recognized in its acknowledgment. The holiness in you belongs to him. And by your seeing it in him, returns to you. All of the tribute you have given specialness belongs to him and thus returns to you. All of the love and care, the strong protection, the thought by day and night, the deep concern, the powerful conviction this is you belong to him. Nothing you gave to specialness but is his due. And nothing due him is not due to you. 
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CHAPTER 24 VIII, 62-72
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
DAILY LESSON
WHAT IS THE BODY?
What is the Body
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*IAMBIC PENTAMETER

  
   The body is a fence the Son of God
   imagines he has built to separate
   parts of his Self from other parts. It is
   within this fence he thinks he lives, to die
   as it decays and crumbles. For within
   this fence he thinks that he is safe from love.
   Identifying with <its safety>, he
   regards himself as <what his safety is>.
   How else could he be certain he remains
   within the body, keeping love outside?
 
   The body will not stay. Yet this he sees
   as double safety. For the Son of God's
   impermanence is "proof" his fences work,
   and do the task his mind [assigned] to them.
   For if his oneness still remained untouched,
   who could attack and who could be attacked?
   Who could be victor? Who could be his prey?
   Who could be victim? Who the murderer?
   And if he did not die, what proof is there
   that God's eternal Son [has] been destroyed?
 
   The body is a dream. Like other dreams,
   it sometimes seems to picture happiness,
   but can quite suddenly revert to fear,
   where every dream is born. For only love
   creates in truth, and truth can never fear.
   Made to be fearful, must the body serve
   the purpose given it. But we can change
   the purpose [which] the body will obey
   by changing what we think that it is for.
 
   The body is the means by which God's Son
   returns to sanity. Though it was made
   to fence him into hell without escape,
   yet has the goal of Heaven been exchanged
   for the pursuit of hell. The Son of God
   extends his hand to reach his brother, and
   to help him walk along the road with him.
   Now is the body holy. Now it serves
   to heal the mind that it was made to kill.
 
   You will identify with what you think
   will make you safe. Whatever it may be,
   you will believe that it is one with you.
   Your safety lies in truth and not in lies.
   Love is your safety. Fear does not exist.
   Identify with love, and you are safe.
   Identify with love, and you are home.
   Identify with love, and find your Self.
  
    ~ Original Hand Script  
 
 
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
DAILY LESSON
SonShip Workbook
L e s s o n 262
Let me perceive no differences today.
 
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      Father, You have one Son. And it is he  
    that I would look upon today. He is
    Your one Creation. Why should I perceive
    a thousand forms in what remains as one?
    Why should I give this one a thousand names,
    when only one suffices? For Your Son
    must bear Your Name, for You created him.
    Let me not see him as a stranger to
    his Father, nor as stranger to myself.
    For he is part of me and I of him,
    and we are part of You Who are our Source,
    eternally united in Your Love;
    eternally the holy Son of God.
 
   We who are one would recognize this day
   the truth about ourselves. We would come home,
   and rest in unity. For there is peace,
   and nowhere else can peace be sought and found.
 
     ~ Original Handscript of ACIM  
 
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ACIM Edmonton - Sarah's Reflections ACIM Edmonton, CA
LESSON 262
Let me perceive no differences today.

  
Sarah's Commentary:  
 
When I was in Sedona studying and practicing the Course, I attended a workshop given by Nicola Perry called, "My Journey as a Course-Based Healer." At her workshop, she told the story of how she came to be a spiritual healer. She described the events of her life that led her to become a healer and then described what happens in her mind when she offers healing to others.
 
The significant thing she discovered was that she had to dismiss someone's bodily identity in her mind when she joined in a healing session. She had to get beyond differences such as male, female, likes, dislikes, interests---anything about their identities. Every single bit of normal perception about who someone was had to be released in order for her to come to the place where she overlooked all differences. Her intent was to see the person as a Son of God, their true Self, their true nature, and their formless spirit. It was something not forced but just happened. She cautioned that it cannot be imposed by trying to mentally create such a picture and superimpose it on the person while shoving all the usual perceptions to the back of the mind. The first step she took in this process was to relax, become aware of the perceptions she was holding, ask for help in letting them go, and reaffirm the true nature as the same One Self. "Why should I give this one a thousand names, when only one suffices? For Your Son must bear Your name, for You created him." (W.262.1.5-6)
 
No one is a stranger. Everyone is part of me and I of them. To recognize this is to know the truth about ourselves. It is only in recognizing our sameness and that we share the same interests that we can know peace. Peace can only be found in unity, never in differences. We spend so much of our time comparing and measuring ourselves against others. We see ourselves better than or less than others based on our judgments of them and of ourselves. Differences and comparisons constitute our special relationships, whether they be differences based on special love or special hate. We see someone who has what we don't have and what we think we need. In the special relationship, our goal is to try to get from the other what we think will fill our perceived lacks. Our perception of differences is a way to see the other as sinful so we can see ourselves as innocent. And what is their perceived sin? It is the belief that they have stolen from us what is rightfully ours and now they owe us. If they don't give us what we consider is ours, we hate them for it.
 
Every relationship, whether of hate or seeming love, is a special relationship. It is by definition one of differences. The ego uses these relationships to project guilt onto others for separating from God. Fundamental to all of our special relationships is seeing each one as a body and not who they really are. "Such is the strange position in which those in a world inhabited by bodies seem to be. Each body seems to house a separate mind, a disconnected thought, living alone and in no way joined to the Thought by which it was created. Each tiny fragment seems to be self-contained, needing another for some things, but by no means totally dependent on its one Creator for everything; needing the whole to give it any meaning, for by itself it does mean nothing. Nor has it any life apart and by itself." (T.18.VIII.5.1-4) (ACIM OE T.18.IX.75)
 
The focus of this Lesson is on our unity. The recognition of shared interests is a condition of the Teacher of God as stated in the Manual for Teachers. It is to recognize that there is only one Son. "A teacher of God is anyone who chooses to be one. His qualifications consist solely in this; somehow, somewhere he has made a deliberate choice in which he did not see his interests as apart from someone else's. Once he has done that, his road is established and his direction is sure. A light has entered the darkness. It may be a single light, but that is enough. He has entered an agreement with God even if he does not yet believe in Him. He has become a bringer of salvation. He has become a teacher of God." (M.1.1.1-8)
 
Clearly, our eyes show us that there are many, yet today, we are reminded that we all share the same Christ Self and are One with God. Differences are only apparent in the illusion and reinforced by our senses. Now we are called to use every situation as an opportunity to see beyond differences and recognize that we share the same purpose and the same goal. The purpose of every relationship is for the healing of the mind. We do this by taking responsibility for our judgments and being willing to release them. Beyond these judgments is the truth, waiting to be acknowledged.
 
Although we will continue to see differences, today we make a decision to watch our judgments and take responsibility for them, joining with Jesus and asking for his help to see our brothers as innocent. The body is all about reinforcing our seeming separate state and maintaining differences between us, but the body can be turned to a holy purpose. We can choose to put the body to the purpose of healing. We can choose how we use the body. It can be used for pleasure, for attack, for getting what we think we want, or for extending love and forgiveness, thus being an agent of the Holy Spirit. What the body is used for is simply a matter of choice. The choice is ours. Peace is found in joining with our brothers and recognizing that we share the same purpose. "You cannot enter into real relationships with any of God's Sons unless you love them all and equally. Love is not special." (T.13.X.11.1-2) (ACIM OE T.13.IV.30)
 
I had a situation recently where I made a judgment about the behavior of someone whom I felt was acting in a way that was self-serving and selfish, looking after her own needs in a way I thought was at the expense of others. In the process, I felt she was less than honest and forthright. I asked myself if these were aspects I could see in myself? I had to look at my own self-serving and selfish behavior that I preferred to see in her. I took responsibility for my self-attacks, without judging myself for them. I was willing to just look at them.
 
The ego does not want us to look. The principle behind any defense is not to look because to look at our own ego without judging ourselves is the way it is undone. The miracle "merely looks on devastation, and reminds the mind that what it sees is false." (W.PII.Q13.1.3) The same thing is said about forgiveness. "It merely looks, and waits, and judges not." (W.PII.Q1.4.3) Healing is in the willingness to look without judgment. My judgment was a projection in which I preferred to see the sin in her that I feared was mine. What this allowed me to do is to claim my innocence at her expense. My attack thoughts convinced me that she was the problem. We do this so we don't have to look at our own self-hatred. The only reason I am affected at all by her, or anyone, is that I forget it is my dream that I am dreaming. As I released my misguided perceptions to the Holy Spirit, I was able to have a lovely, open connection with her and recognize that we are both innocent.
 
The truth about everyone is that they are innocent, no matter what the body seems to be doing. When we can accept that it is truly all a dream, we can see more clearly that everyone who shows up in our dream is playing the role we assigned to them for our own healing. There are no accidents in salvation. Whatever we need to experience in order to heal, we do experience through the part others play in our drama. It can all seem so unfair but that is only when we forget it is our own dream.
 
Yes, we still do react to events in the dream as if they were real, and we have feelings and reactions to these events that seem to come from outside our own minds. Thus, we like some events and feel good about them, and dislike others and feel very sad, hurt and unfairly treated. We see ourselves as the effect of the world and believe that it is the world dreaming us, instead of our own dream. When we recognize that it is all our own dream, we can see that it all comes from our own minds. Mind is the cause and the world is the effect. Thus, we have power over what seems to be happening to us. "For you would not react at all to figures in a dream you knew that you were dreaming. Let them be as hateful and as vicious as they may, they could have no effect on you unless you failed to recognize it is your dream." (T.27.VIII.10.5) (ACIM OE T.27. IX.86)
 
It is true that some of what I see another doing may not be what I have done in form. My actions may not be the same, but my thoughts are the same. I have not murdered anyone, yet I have the same murderous thoughts. I may not be poor, but I hold thoughts of lack, self-protection, self-centeredness, and greed. I may not be addicted to alcohol or drugs, but I have other addictions. We share the same one ego mind, which contains all of our misperceptions of what we are. We project our thoughts onto others in order to be rid of them in ourselves. Of course, this does not work, because by projecting onto others, we keep what the ego tells us that we are giving away. Until we can see that this is the case, we will continue to project our guilt in the false belief that we are getting rid of it in ourselves. We do it because we still value separation. While we attempt to distance ourselves from our thoughts, they are never disowned. All they do is keep our guilt intact.
 
Attack and judgment can only come with belief in differences and separation. Without this belief, any attack that we seem to make on another would be just an attack on ourselves. Why would I attack a part of myself? Today, we are called to watch our judgments and when differences arise, be willing to forgive them. We affirm the truth today: This is my brother, who is a part of me and whom I love, as I love myself. Affirmations will never overcome the ego, but they remind us of the truth. If we are not experiencing this as true for us, we can ask the Holy Spirit for help to see our brother as He sees him. If God loves my brother and I judge him instead, I am proclaiming that I am separate from my brother, and my will is different from God's.
 
Today, we remind ourselves that our desire is to see in everyone our dearest friend. We actively watch for the judgments we make that contravene this thought and are willing to be wrong about the way we are seeing him. This is how we do our part as an invitation to the Holy Spirit to bring this experience into reality for us, so we can truly know there are no differences. Until the experience is there, effort and discipline are required. It may seem like the discipline and the consistent practice required is difficult and that progress is not being made, but there will then be a moment of a shift in the mind where we receive the peace and understanding delivered through our practicing. Recently, a friend described this as her "Helen Keller moment."
 
Helen Keller was blind and deaf and unable to communicate. Her teacher was teaching her to sign and Helen was good at repeating what she was taught because she was very bright. However, there was no real understanding until the moment when all of a sudden she made the association with the sign for water and the actual feel of the water. Then, everything clicked for her and she became very excited. It is the same for us when we do this work. It may not click for a long time as we do our practice until all of a sudden there is a deep insight, and we get it. This may happen again and again and is very powerful in the moment of realization. So keep up with the practice and know that this moment is available when the mind is ready. Readying the mind requires willingness, vigilance, and determination to practice in watching our thoughts and doing the forgiveness work.
 
Love and blessings, Sarah 
A Course in Miracles
TEXT
ACIM Original Edition
Chapter Twenty Four

Specialness and Separation
 
Play Audio
CHAPTER 24 VIII, 62-72
Voice and Music by Martin Weber, CIMS SonShip Radio
 
 
VIII. The Meeting Place 
 
62 How bitterly does everyone tied to this world defend the specialness he wants to be the truth! His wish is law unto him, and he obeys. Nothing his specialness demands does he withhold. Nothing it needs does he deny to what he loves. And while it calls to him, he hears no other Voice. No effort is too great, no cost too much, no price too dear to save his specialness from the least slight, the tiniest attack, the whispered doubt, the hint of threat, or anything but deepest reverence. This is your son, beloved of you as you are to your Father. Yet it stands in place of your creations, who are son to you, that you might share the Fatherhood of God, not snatch it from Him. What is this son that you have made to be your strength? What is this child of earth on whom such love is lavished? What is this parody of God's creation that takes the place of yours? And where are they, now that the host of God has found another son which he prefers to them?
 
63 The memory of God shines not alone. What is within your brother still contains all of creation, everything created and creating, born and unborn as yet, still in the future or apparently gone by. What is in him is changeless, and your changelessness is recognized in its acknowledgment. The holiness in you belongs to him. And by your seeing it in him, returns to you. All of the tribute you have given specialness belongs to him and thus returns to you. All of the love and care, the strong protection, the thought by day and night, the deep concern, the powerful conviction this is you belong to him. Nothing you gave to specialness but is his due. And nothing due him is not due to you.
 
64 How can you know your worth while specialness claims you instead? How can you fail to know it is in his holiness? Seek not to make your specialness the truth, for if it were, you would be lost indeed. Be thankful, rather, it is given you to see his holiness because it is the truth. And what is true in him must be as true in you.
 
65 Ask yourself this: can you protect the mind? The body, yes, a little-not from time, but temporarily. And much you think you save, you hurt. What would you save it for? For in that choice lie both its health and harm. Save it for show, as bait to catch another fish, to house your specialness in better style or weave a frame of loveliness around your hate, and you condemn it to decay and death. And if you see this purpose in your brother's, such is your condemnation of your own. Weave, rather then, a frame of holiness around him that the truth may shine on him and give you safety from decay.
 
66 The Father keeps what He created safe. You cannot touch it with the false ideas you made because it was created not by you. Let not your foolish fancies frighten you. What is immortal cannot be attacked; what is but temporal has no effect. Only the purpose that you see in it has meaning, and if that is true, its safety rests secure. If not, it has no purpose and is means for nothing. Whatever is perceived as means for truth shares in its holiness and rests in light as safely as itself. Nor will that light go out when it is gone. Its holy purpose gave it immortality, setting another light in Heaven, where your creations recognize a gift from you, a sign that you have not forgotten them.
 
67 The test of everything on earth is simply this: "What is it for?" The answer makes it what it is for you. It has no meaning of itself, yet you can give reality to it according to the purpose which you serve. Here you are but means, along with it. God is a Means as well as End. In Heaven, means and end are one, and one with Him. This is the state of true creation, found not within time, but in eternity. To no one here is this describable. Nor is there any way to learn what this condition means. Not till you go past learning to the Given; not till you make again a holy home for your creations is it understood.
 
68 A co-creator with the Father must have a Son. Yet must this Son have been created like Himself. A perfect being, all-encompassing and all-encompassed, nothing to add and nothing taken from-not born of size nor weight nor time nor held to limits or uncertainties of any kind. Here do the means and end unite as one, nor does this one have any end at all. All this is true, and yet it has no meaning to anyone who still retains one unlearned lesson in his memory, one thought with purpose still uncertain, or one wish with a divided aim.
 
69 This course makes no attempt to teach what cannot easily be learned. Its scope does not exceed your own, except to say that what is yours will come to you when you are ready. Here are the means and purpose separate because they were so made and so perceived. And therefore do we deal with them as if they were. It is essential it be kept in mind that all perception still is upside down until its purpose has been understood. Perception does not seem to be a means. And it is this that makes it hard to grasp the whole extent to which it must depend on what you see it for. Perception seems to teach you what you see. Yet it but witnesses to what you taught. It is the outward picture of a wish-an image that you wanted to be true.
 
70 Look at yourself, and you will see a body. Look at this body in a different light, and it looks different. And without a light, it seems that it is gone. Yet you are reassured that it is there because you still can feel it with your hands and hear it move. Here is an image that you want to be yourself. It is the means to make your wish come true. It gives the eyes with which you look on it, the hands that feel it, and the ears with which you listened to the sounds it makes. It proves its own reality to you.
 
71 Thus is the body made a theory of yourself with no provisions made for evidence beyond itself and no escape within its sight. Its course is sure when seen through its own eyes. It grows and withers, flourishes and dies. And you cannot conceive of you apart from it. You brand it sinful, and you hate its acts, judging it evil. Yet your specialness whispers, "Here is my own beloved son, in whom I am well pleased." Thus does the "son" become the means to serve his "father's" purpose. Not identical, not even like, but still a means to offer to the "father" what he wants. Such is the travesty on God's creation. For as His Son's creation gave Him joy and witness to His love and shared His purpose, so does the body testify to the idea that made it and speak for its reality and truth.
 
72 And thus are two sons made, and both appear to walk this earth without a meeting-place and no encounter. One do you see outside yourself, your own beloved son. The other rests within, His Father's Son, within your brother as he is in you. Their difference does not lie in how they look, nor where they go, nor even what they do. They have a different purpose. It is this that joins them to their like and separates each from all aspects with a different purpose. The Son of God retains His Father's Will. The son of man perceives an alien will and wishes it were so. And thus does his perception serve his wish by giving it appearances of truth. Yet can perception serve another goal. It is not bound to specialness but by your choice. And it is given you to make a different choice and use perception for a different purpose. And what you see will serve that purpose well and prove its own reality to you.
 
 
     
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