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51 Nothing is lost to you in all the universe. Nothing that God created has He failed to lay before you lovingly as yours forever. And no thought within His Mind is absent from your own. It is His Will you share His love for you and look upon yourself as lovingly as He conceived of you before the world began and as He knows you still. God changes not His Mind about His Son with passing circumstance, which has no meaning in eternity where He abides and you with Him. Your brother is as He created him. And it is this that saves you from a world that He created not.

CHAPTER 24: SPECIALNESS
AND SEPARATION
VII. SALVATION FROM FEAR
Workbook for Students
Part II
What is the Body?
1 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 his safety, he regards himself as what his safety is. How else could he be certain he remains within the body, keeping love outside?

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Lesson 264
I am surrounded
by the Love of God.
1 Father, You stand before me and behind, beside me, in the place I see myself, and everywhere I go. You are in all the things I look upon, the sounds I hear, and every hand that reaches for my own. In You time disappears, and place becomes a meaningless belief. For what surrounds Your Son and keeps him safe is Love Itself. There is no Source but This, and nothing is that does not share Its holiness, that stands beyond Your one creation or without the Love Which holds all things within Itself. Father, Your Son is like Yourself. We come to You in Your own Name today, to be at peace within Your everlasting Love.

2 My brothers, join with me in this today. This is salvation's prayer. Must we not join in what will save the world along with us?
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VIDEO L264 Video

Lesson ARCHIVE
Course in Miracles
Original Edition
Text
Chapter 24
 Specialness and Separation

VII. Salvation from Fear
par 49-61
[TEXT READING PAUSED FOR WEEKEND]
49 Before your brother's holiness the world is still and peace descends on it in gentleness and blessing so complete that not one trace of conflict still remains to haunt you in the darkness of the night. He is your savior from the dreams of fear. He is the healing of your sense of sacrifice and fear that what you have will scatter with the wind and turn to dust. In him is your assurance God is here and with you now. While he is what he is, you can be sure that God is knowable and will be known to you. For He could never leave His own creation. And the sign that this is so lies in your brother, offered you that all your doubts about yourself may disappear before his holiness. See in him God's creation. For in him, his Father waits for your acknowledgment that He created you as part of Him.

50 Without you there would be a lack in God, a Heaven incomplete, a Son without a Father. There could be no universe and no reality. For what God wills is whole and part of Him because His Will is One. Nothing alive that is not part of Him, and nothing is but is alive in Him. Your brother's holiness shows you that God is one with him and you—that what he has is yours because you are not separate from him nor from his Father.

51 Nothing is lost to you in all the universe. Nothing that God created has He failed to lay before you lovingly as yours forever. And no thought within His Mind is absent from your own. It is His Will you share His love for you and look upon yourself as lovingly as He conceived of you before the world began and as He knows you still. God changes not His Mind about His Son with passing circumstance, which has no meaning in eternity where He abides and you with Him. Your brother is as He created him. And it is this that saves you from a world that He created not.

52 Forget not that the healing of God's Son is all the world is for. That is the only purpose the Holy Spirit sees in it and thus the only one it has. Until you see the healing of the Son as all you wish to be accomplished by the world, by time, and all appearances, you will not know the Father nor yourself. For you will use the world for what is not its purpose and will not escape its laws of violence and death. Yet it is given you to be beyond its laws in all respects, in every way, and every circumstance, in all temptation to perceive what is not there and all belief God's Son can suffer pain because he sees himself as he is not.

53 Look on your brother and behold in him the whole reversal of the laws that seem to rule this world. See in his freedom yours, for such it is. Let not his specialness obscure the truth in him, for not one law of death you bind him to will you escape. And not one sin you see in him but keeps you both in hell. Yet will his perfect sinlessness release you both, for holiness is quite impartial, with one judgment made for all it looks upon. And that is made, not of itself, but through the Voice that speaks for God in everything that lives and shares His Being.

54 It is His sinlessness that eyes which see can look upon. It is His loveliness they see in everything. And it is He they look for everywhere and find no sight nor place nor time where He is not. Within your brother's holiness, the perfect frame for your salvation and the world's, is set the shining memory of Him in Whom your brother lives and you along with him. Let not your eyes be blinded by the veil of specialness that hides the face of Christ from him, and you as well. And let the fear of God no longer hold the vision you were meant to see from you. Your brother's body shows not Christ to you. He is set forth within his holiness.

55 Choose, then, his body or his holiness as what you want to see, and which you choose is yours to look upon. Yet will you choose in countless situations and through time which seems to have no end until the truth be your decision. For eternity is not regained by still one more denial of Christ in him. And where is your salvation if he is but a body? Where is your peace but in his holiness? And where is God Himself but in that part of Him He set forever in your brother's holiness that you might see the truth about yourself set forth at last in terms you recognized and understood?

56 Your brother's holiness is sacrament and benediction unto you. His errors cannot withhold God's blessing from himself nor you who see him truly. His mistakes can cause delay, which it is given you to take from him that both may end a journey that has never been begun and needs no end. What never was is not a part of you. Yet you will think it is until you realize that it is not a part of him who stands beside you. He is the mirror of yourself wherein you see the judgment you have laid on both of you. The Christ in you beholds his holiness. Your specialness looks on his body and beholds him not.

57 See him as what he is that your deliverance may not be long. A senseless wandering, without a purpose and without accomplishment of any kind, is all the other choice can offer you. Futility of function not fulfilled will haunt you while your brother lies asleep, till what has been assigned to you is done and he is risen from the past. He who condemned himself, and you as well, is given you to save from condemnation along with you. And both shall see God's glory in His Son, whom you mistook as flesh and bound to laws that have no power over him at all.

58 Would you not gladly realize these laws are not for you? Then see him not as prisoner to them. It cannot be what governs part of God holds not for all the rest. You place yourself under the laws you see as ruling him. Think, then, how great the love of God for you must be that He has given you a part of Him to save from pain and give you happiness. And never doubt but that your specialness will disappear before the Will of God, Who loves each part of Him with equal love [and care]. The Christ in you can see your brother truly. Would you decide against the holiness He sees?

59 Specialness is the function which you gave yourself. It stands for you alone, as self-created, self-maintained, in need of nothing, and unjoined with anything beyond the body. In its eyes, you are a separate universe with all the power to hold itself complete within itself, with every entry shut against intrusion and every window barred against the light. Always attacked and always furious, with anger always fully justified, you have pursued this goal with vigilance you never thought to yield and effort that you never thought to cease. And all this grim determination was for this—you wanted specialness to be the truth.

60 Now you are merely asked that you pursue another goal with far less vigilance—with little effort and with little time and with the power of God maintaining it and promising success. Yet of the two, it is this one you find more difficult. The "sacrifice" of self you understand, nor do you deem this cost too heavy. But a tiny willingness, a nod to God, a greeting to the Christ in you, you find a burden wearisome and tedious, too heavy to be borne. Yet to the dedication to the truth as God established it no sacrifice is asked, no strain called forth, and all the power of Heaven and the might of truth itself is given to provide the means and guarantee the goal's accomplishment.

61 You who believe it easier to see your brother's body than his holiness, be sure you understand what made this judgment. Here is the voice of specialness heard clearly, judging against the Christ and setting forth for you the purpose that you can attain and what you cannot do. Forget not that this judgment must apply to what you do with it as your ally. For what you do through Christ it does not know. To Him this judgment makes no sense at all, for only what His Father wills is possible, and there is no alternative for Him to see. Out of His lack of conflict comes your peace. And from His purpose comes the means for effortless accomplishment and rest.

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Sarah's Reflections
Lesson 264
I am surrounded
by the Love of God.
Sarah's Commentary:
 
This Lesson is a beautiful prayer where Jesus asks us to join with him. "My brothers, join with me in this today. This is salvation's prayer." (W.264.2.1-2) So the question is: Will we join him today in this prayer, using it to start our morning and end our day? We remind ourselves all day that, "I am surrounded by the love of God." (W.264) It raises the questions in my mind: What is it I really and truly want? What is the prayer of my heart? Do I want to know the love I am and nothing else?
 
We are being asked today to forget all things except His Love. When everything disappears from my mind and I experience being surrounded by His Love, it is an experience of the holy instant. This is where we have an instant of recognition that our reality is not the body, with all its needs, fears, and issues. Nor are we confined to time and space. It is a deeply touching experience to feel being surrounded by such all-encompassing Love. The false image crumbles in His Presence and what is left is a field of awareness where boundaries and limitations are no more.
 
What keeps us from this experience? It is our investment in our thoughts. It is our investment in our stories. It is our focus on our worries, our plans, our problems, and anticipated solutions. The mind gets invested in all of the inner chatter where there is no peace. When we no longer give it our attention and lose interest in the stories, the worries, and the problems, the mind becomes still, not by force but by our lack of interest. It is like when we are watching television and a commercial comes on. It can be blaring, but if we have no interest in it, it does not draw our attention.
 
As long as we think we know something, we won't be open to being shown the truth. Our thoughts and perceptions stand in the way. What I think I know is what I have made up in my thinking mind. We are reluctant to release what we think we know because we think that we can find safety and security in our own thoughts. We think that they protect us. We rely on being in control. Letting go and trusting Him seems like a sacrifice of all we rely on. We are invited to consider where our safety truly lies. We don’t know our own best interests. We can’t know where our happiness truly lies. Our own thinking only brings us more suffering.
 
Today, we focus on connecting to the stillness behind our thoughts. Resistance comes up because we fear the light. We want to be right about who we think we are. We want to hold onto our image of ourselves, our self-concepts, our belief in the body, and our personality, but this is not who we are. Only by our willingness to release control and to surrender our way can the miracle show up. Yet this requires a vulnerability that we protect ourselves against by managing time and space for our purposes, as we see them. Thus, we fear the miracle. Yet only through the miracle can we experience a new perception where there is a recognition that we are not these characters in the dream that we thought we were. We are not our body, our personality, our self-concepts, our values, our beliefs, or any thoughts we hold.
 
The prayer affirms that there is not a God separate from my Self. "In You time disappears, and place becomes a meaningless belief." (W264.1.3) There is only love and nothing else. There is no me, no you, only "the Love which holds all things within itself." (W264.1.5) Thus, we can "be at peace within Your everlasting Love." (W264.1.7) Only truth is true. Everything else is a construct in my mind, and when I identify with all the constructs of time and space, where I think I am, who I think I am, and what seems to be going on in my life, I keep the truth at bay.
 
The prayer reminds us of the truth of our reality. The love of God that surrounds us is what we really are and not the construct we have made of ourselves. We are One Self, the Son of God, living in the experience of God.
 
To know the Self requires that we bring everything we are not to the light of truth where our self-concepts are dissolved in the light. What we project onto the world is a false self, but all our projections can be valuable when we learn to look at them with the Holy Spirit and realize they are all hallucinations of our mind. When we see the world as a classroom for healing, all things that need to be healed will be pulled to the surface. Why be unhappy about anything we experience here when it is all valuable for undoing the ego mind. Indeed, we can be grateful for everything that shows up, as it can all be used for a mighty purpose.
 
We have not yet come to see our wholeness as having more value than the "comfort" we imagine is being provided by the ego. We seek what makes us feel comfortable and safe. When our comfort is threatened in any way, we think we are having a bad day. If my car breaks down while I am on my way to an appointment, grievances come up. There is now a temptation to throw away my peace. Yet this event can teach me that peace is available to my mind as a constant. Whatever comes up for healing in our day is a perfect opportunity to learn who we are, but we are not guilty if we fail to learn the lesson. It will simply come up again and again until we are ready to get it.
 
Everything in our day has a holy purpose when used for healing. How easily grace heals all things when there is willingness, welcome, readiness, and a recognition that we truly are supported in all things! It may not be the ego's idea of what support looks like, but if the ego had its way, true transformation would be impossible. We would forever feel vulnerable to the vagaries of the world and the weaknesses of these bodies. "Love is your safety." (W.PII.Q5.5.4) Only in the recognition of who we are can we be safe, and to recognize this is to know again what we have always known.
 
"Is it not strange that you should cherish still some hope of satisfaction from the world you see? In no respect, at any time or place, has anything but fear and guilt been your reward. How long is needed for you to realize the chance of change in this respect is hardly worth delaying change that might result in better outcome? For one thing is sure; the way you see, and long have seen, gives no support to base your future hopes, and no suggestions of success at all. To place your hopes where no hope lies must make you hopeless. Yet is this hopelessness your choice, while you would seek for hope where none is ever found." (T.25.II.2.1-6) (ACIM OE T.25.III.13)
 
The only blocks there are to love are those we put there. It is the only reason love seems unavailable to us. When we seem to be having problems and are not doing well, we are actually rebelling against Love. The rebel is behind every single problem we have in this world. It is the deepest part of the ego mind that needs to be healed. Our authority problem with God is the basis of our seeming separation. We have made it real by our beliefs when, in fact, it is all illusion. We can now choose to give over our false beliefs and have them replaced for us. All that is required is that we ask the Holy Spirit in everything, "How would you have me see this situation, this person, this event?"
 
When we focus on our specialness, on our dark stories, and on the idols that we think we need, and when we indulge our emotional tantrums on how things should be for us to be happy, we are actually choosing to give up God's peace, joy, and love that surrounds us. When we choose ego gratification, this maintains the separation from each other and from God. Our willingness to look at these self-defeating patterns is what opens us to God's Love. It is the only real safety there is for us. All the ego thought system does is seemingly "protect" us from love, and it does so by telling us that we are safer in the body and in the world than we would be in God's presence.
 
Today, pray the prayer by joining with Jesus who is in our minds, standing with us as a symbol of God's love, as he reminds us that this is salvation's prayer. He wants us to experience the perfect safety of God's embrace, even if it is just for the moment. He is the All in all. He is where we stand. There is nothing else but God. Time and space are illusions. When we go into the silence with this prayer, acknowledging the Love that surrounds us always, we experience His everlasting love. This is the truth, and it is where our peace is. Whatever shows up today that is unlike this peace, we bring to awareness and place it on the inner altar.
 
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Love and blessings, Sarah
 
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