Lesson 273
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Heaven's Justice
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
CH 25 THE REMEDY
X. THE JUSTICE OF HEAVEN

78 What can it be but arrogance to think your little errors cannot be undone by Heaven's justice? And what could this mean except that they are sins and not mistakes, forever uncorrectable, and to be met with vengeance not with justice? Are you willing to be released from all effects of sin? You cannot answer this until you see all that the answer must entail. For if you answer "yes," it means you will forego all values of this world in favor of the peace of Heaven. Not one sin would you retain. And not one doubt that this is possible will you hold dear that sin be kept in place. You mean that truth has greater value now than all illusions. And you recognize that truth must be revealed to you because you know not what it is.

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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
WORKBOOK for STUDENTS
What is the Christ_
WHAT IS THE CHRIST?

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*IAMBIC PENTAMETER* Example MP3
 
   Christ is God's Son as He created him.
   He is the Self we share, uniting us
   with one another, and with God as well.
   He is the Thought Which still abides within
   the Mind Which is His Source. He has not left
   His holy home, nor lost the innocence
   in which He was created. He abides
   unchanged forever in the Mind of God.
  
   He is the link that keeps you one with God,
   and guarantees that separation is
   no more than an illusion of despair,
   for hope forever will abide in Him.
   Your mind is part of His, and His of yours.
   He is the part in Which God's Answer lies;
   where all decisions are already made,
   and dreams are over. He remains untouched
   by anything the body's eyes perceive.
   For though in Him His Father placed the means
   for your salvation, yet does He remain
   the Self Who, like His Father, knows no sin.
 
   Home of the Holy Spirit, and at home
   in God alone, does Christ remain at peace,
   within the Heaven of your holy mind.
   This is the only part of you that has
   reality in truth. The rest is dreams.
   Yet will these dreams be given unto Christ,
   to fade before His glory, and reveal
   your holy Self, the Christ, to you at last.
 
   The Holy Spirit reaches from the Christ
   in you to all your dreams, and bids them come
   to Him to be translated into truth.
   He will exchange them for the final dream
   which God appointed as the end of dreams.
   For when forgiveness rests upon the world
   and peace has come to every Son of God,
   what could remain to keep things separate,
   for what remains to see except Christ's face?
 
   And how long can this holy face be seen,
   when it is but the symbol that the time
   for learning now is over, and the goal
   of the Atonement has been reached at last?
   So therefore let us seek to find Christ's face,
   and look on nothing else. As we behold
   His glory, will we know we have no need
   of learning or perception or of time,
   or anything except the holy Self,
   the Christ Whom God created as His Son.
  
    ~ Original Hand Script  
 
  
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DAILY LESSON
SonShip Workbook
 L e s s o n 273
The stillness of the peace of God is mine.


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   Perhaps we are now ready for a day
   of undisturbed tranquility. If this
   is not yet feasible, we are content
   and even more than satisfied to learn
   how such a day can be achieved. If we
   give way to a disturbance, let us learn
   how to dismiss it, and return to peace.
   We need but tell our minds with certainty,
   "The stillness of the peace of God is mine,"
   and nothing can intrude upon the peace
   that God Himself has given to His Son.
 
    Father, Your peace is mine. What need have I
    to fear that anything can rob me of
    what You would have me keep? I cannot lose
    Your gifts to me. And so the peace You gave
    Your Son is with me still, in quietness
    and in my own eternal love of You.
     
     ~ Original Handscript of ACIM  
  
          
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ACIM Edmonton - Sarah's Reflections 
ACIM Edmonton, CA

LESSON 273
The stillness of the peace of God is mine.

Sarah's Commentary:  
 
Isn't it beautiful how Jesus gently reminds us that even if we don't feel the undisturbed tranquility talked about here, we can still be content to ". . . learn how such a day can be achieved." (W.273.1.2) We don't need to be dismayed if we don't feel a deep peace in our meditation time and throughout the day, because we are assured we simply cannot lose the gifts of God already in us. (W.273.2.3) We have them now! The peace, joy, and stillness are already in us. There is nothing to be done to find peace. We need only participate in the process of undoing all of our interfering thoughts standing in the way of peace. Peace is being offered to us in each moment by the Holy Spirit. His Light shines unabated in our minds, waiting for our willingness to give over our darkness to Him.
 
Even though a day of undisturbed tranquility may not yet be here now, we can still be content. There is no need to chastise ourselves when we think we are not where we should be. In fact, it is only the ego that we are listening to when we get upset with ourselves. Jesus urges us to be content with where we are. We are to be happy learners. It would make no sense to throw away our peace because we are not where we "should" be based on expectations we put on ourselves. The idea is to be content even though we may not yet know peace consistently.
 
We can be content because everything showing up in our lives is absolutely perfect for our healing. Everything and everyone in our lives reveal to us places where we hold judgments about ourselves. We can simply allow the Holy Spirit to shine away all pain. It is not necessarily instantaneous, although it can be. We will go as fast or as slow as our fear and resistance will allow. We will not be hurled into Heaven. It is a process of being willing to recognize that all things truly work together for good. We are in charge of welcoming Spirit into our lives to the extent we are ready, open and willing. Although it is generally not comfortable or peaceful to go through the darkness, being willing to look at our ego preservation strategies is the only way to release them.
 
When we are in a state of distress or emotional upheaval, it is not about making ourselves wrong or judging ourselves for not being sufficiently spiritual, but instead, we welcome the feelings that come up and go deeper into them for the purpose of uncovering what has been hidden from our awareness. When we are open and willing to look at the thoughts and feelings coming up, we can then release them to the Holy Spirit. He does the rest. Healing is assured. Any feelings we harbor, project, blame, hold, stuff down, or deny, are what we keep from healing. We keep ourselves from healing when we judge ourselves for not being good enough or ready, as yet, to look at what we have denied. Not looking is what keeps our defenses in place on the battleground where our thoughts rule our experience.
 
It is not our job to make ourselves holy. We already are holy, complete, innocent, and whole. There is nothing wrong with us. We are as God created us in our loveliness, but it is not how we experience ourselves. Our experience is one of self-judgment and self-attack, and because of this, we do not consistently feel our purity. In fact, the mind is addicted to darkness and experiences the distortions of the ego. We listen to our own thoughts and believe in our own stories and by doing so, we give power to them.
 
To make space for the miracle we must let our dark thoughts be washed away. It means they first must be exposed. The ego tells us not to go there, saying there is so much darkness in us that we are better off to keep it contained, and this is how we keep the self-attack going. Our holy will has been enslaved by the ego, but this need not be. We can ask for the miracle, which aligns us with the truth of our creation. The miracle offers us moments of joyful opening with no particular reason for that experience. Thus, we see the contrast between the suffering that comes from investing in our own thoughts versus the joy brought about by miracle-mindedness. Miracles can only show up where space is made for them. That space is the clearing away of the obstacles. Bringing our dark thoughts to the truth is how they are dissolved.
 
Peace is given us in our creation and is not something we can give to ourselves. It is always there, behind every thought of despair, worry, distress, concern, jealousy, depression, anger, rejection, sadness, and feelings of abandonment and unworthiness. When such thoughts and feelings are released to the Holy Spirit, space opens up in the mind for the light to shine through. It requires the discipline and vigilance that the Course lays out for us in each Lesson. None of it can be bestowed on us by some power or some guru. We must do this work ourselves by watching our own minds. While there is no answer outside of our own minds, by joining with our mighty companions, we can hold a sacred space for each other for healing. "You whose hand is joined with your brother's have begun to reach beyond the body, but not outside yourself, to reach your shared Identity together." (T.18.VI.10.2) (ACIM OE T.18.VII.58) We cannot know Oneness in this world, but we can see our sameness, which is a reflection of the Oneness.
 
God's Voice calls to us, but we don't hear it because of the cacophony of our own thoughts. We all experience how relentless and obsessive these thoughts can be. We focus on personal problems, on problems of the world, on grievances, on what others think about us, on future plans, on past betrayals, on our addictions to sex and food, on fears and doubts, on regrets, on plans for our future, on money concerns, and on and on it goes. So yes, it does take vigilance to see what grabs our attention and distracts us, but we must also be gentle and easy with ourselves in this process. It is not helpful to condemn ourselves for any seeming lack of progress, because if we do, we just experience more guilt. It is a daily, if not moment by moment, reminder that this world is just a classroom, and every day and every moment, we can choose again. We can offer our brothers a blessing instead of a judgment or curse, and with each blessing, we receive one for ourselves.
 
When we see sin in our brother and rejoice in what we see in him, we are cutting ourselves off from peace. We are crucifying the brother God has given us as a teacher of peace. Yes, it may indeed be the one who seems to be attacking us, but we can never be the judge of who provides us with the biggest gift. Each one offers us another opportunity to go deeper into our own feelings and uncover what we have hidden from our awareness. Each one who crosses our path brings with him or her the function of salvation because each one offers us a mirror. They reflect for us the guilt or the innocence in our own minds. Each one thus becomes a portal through which we can see what we could not access in ourselves before this encounter. Yet how often we refuse to see the gift because it does not always appear to be a gift. It may, in fact, look like rejection, betrayal, judgment, or attack. Where this is the case, it is harder for us to see his need is as great as our own and the blessing we offer him can bless us both and bring the miracle of healing.
 
We can really beat up on ourselves for not doing well enough on this path. It is important to remind ourselves there is nothing to strive for. When we strive, we are anxious. We are struggling with our ego and fighting it instead of just looking at it. Again, it is important to remain gentle with ourselves in this learning process. We already have it all. We just need to keep reminding ourselves that the peace is already ours. "We need but tell our minds with certainty 'The stillness of the peace of God is mine' and nothing that can intrude upon the peace that God Himself has given to His Son." (W.273.1.4) If we don't have it, we have actively chosen to throw it away and blame our brother for having taken it from us.
 
Today, we set a goal for peace and tranquility and remind ourselves with any upset that disturbs us that the stillness of the peace of God is ours. Now we are willing to look at the upset and bring it to the stillness within. Nothing can take away our peace. If we don't have it, it is a signal that we are listening to the ego. For me, it is always remembering to ask for help. It is to stop the instant I recognize I am disturbed by anything and to take a moment in stillness to look at what I am thinking and be willing to ask for help in how to see the situation differently. Often, I find I have to withdraw from the conflict in order to find a place of sanity in my mind.
 
Can we remind ourselves today that the belief we will never get there is just another way for the ego to keep us feeling stuck? It is about accepting every day and in each moment that we can just start again, and with each mistake ask for the correction rather than taking on more guilt. This allows us to be a happy learner, meaning we are happy with whatever shows up in our day, knowing it is all for our awakening. We sometimes stubbornly hold onto distressing thoughts because we actually prefer to blame our brother for our lack of peace. This is a conspiracy the ego has set up to keep us imprisoned with our brother, thinking we must get revenge on him for what he has done. We use this as an excuse to hold onto our unhappiness. It is a picture of the crucified Christ that we hold up for our brother to see what he has done to us. "Death seems an easy price, if they can say, 'Behold me, brother, at your hand I die'." (T.27.I.4.6) (ACIM OE T.27.II.4)
 
The Lesson today is more about watching our minds and watching our resistance than pretending we are always peaceful. We need to remain vigilant in how true peace and happiness threaten our existence as we know it. It is the underlying motivation for our conflicts. It is, as we read in the Obstacles to Peace, why the first obstacle to peace is our desire to be rid of it. "If you would make it (peace) homeless, how can it abide within the Son of God?" (T.19.IV.A.1.5) (ACIM OE T.19.V.A.40) Today, we are called to stay vigilant in looking at the remnants of attack that we still cherish against our brothers in our encounters. This is how we keep ourselves limited. With vigilance and willingness, we turn over each remnant of attack to the Holy Spirit so He can shine them away and return our minds to the peace that is our inheritance.

Love and blessings, Sarah
 
ACIM Original Edition
X. The Justice of Heaven  

78 What can it be but arrogance to think your little errors cannot be undone by Heaven's justice? And what could this mean except that they are sins and not mistakes, forever uncorrectable, and to be met with vengeance not with justice? Are you willing to be released from all effects of sin? You cannot answer this until you see all that the answer must entail. For if you answer "yes," it means you will forego all values of this world in favor of the peace of Heaven. Not one sin would you retain. And not one doubt that this is possible will you hold dear that sin be kept in place. You mean that truth has greater value now than all illusions. And you recognize that truth must be revealed to you because you know not what it is.
 
79 To give reluctantly is not to gain the gift because you are reluctant to accept it. It is saved for you until reluctance to receive it disappears, and you are willing it be given you. God's justice warrants gratitude, not fear. Nothing you give is lost to you or anyone, but cherished and preserved in Heaven, where all of the treasures given to God's Son are kept for him and offered anyone who but holds out his hand in willingness they be received. Nor is the treasure less as it is given out. Each gift but adds to the supply. For God is fair. He does not fight against His Son's reluctance to perceive salvation as a gift from Him. Yet would His justice not be satisfied until it is received by everyone.
 
80 Be certain any answer to a problem the Holy Spirit solves will always be one in which no one loses. And this must be true because He asks no sacrifice of anyone. An answer which demands the slightest loss to anyone has not resolved the problem but has added to it and made it greater, harder to resolve, and more unfair. It is impossible the Holy Spirit could see unfairness as a resolution. To Him, what is unfair must be corrected because it is unfair. And every error is a perception in which one at least is seen unfairly. Thus is justice not accorded to the Son of God. When anyone is seen as losing, he has been condemned. And punishment becomes his due instead of justice.
 
81 The sight of innocence makes punishment impossible and justice sure. The Holy Spirit's perception leaves no ground for an attack. Only a loss could justify attack, and loss of any kind He cannot see. The world solves problems in another way. It sees a resolution as a state in which it is decided who shall win and who shall lose-how much the one shall take and how much can the loser still defend.
 
82 Yet does the problem still remain unsolved, for only justice can set up a state in which there is no loser, no one left unfairly treated and deprived, and thus with grounds for vengeance. Problem solving cannot be vengeance, which at best can bring another problem added to the first, in which the murder is not obvious. The Holy Spirit's problem solving is the way in which the problem ends. It has been solved because it has been met with justice. Until it has, it will recur because it has not yet been solved. The principle that justice means no one can lose is crucial to this course. For miracles depend on justice. Not as it is seen through this world's eyes, but as God knows it, and as knowledge is reflected in the sight the Holy Spirit gives.
 
83 No one deserves to lose. And what would be unjust to him cannot occur. Healing must be for everyone because he does not merit an attack of any kind. What order can there be in miracles, unless someone deserves to suffer more and others less? And is this justice to the wholly innocent? A miracle is justice. It is not a special gift to some to be withheld from others as less worthy, more condemned, and thus apart from healing. Who is there who can be separate from salvation if its purpose is the end of specialness? Where is salvation's justice if some errors are unforgivable and warrant vengeance in place of healing and return of peace?
 
84 Salvation cannot seek to help God's Son be more unfair than he has sought to be. If miracles, the Holy Spirit's gift, were given specially to an elect and special group and kept apart from others as less deserving, then is He ally to specialness. What He cannot perceive He bears no witness to. And everyone is equally entitled to His gift of healing and deliverance and peace. To give a problem to the Holy Spirit to solve for you means that you want it solved. To keep it for yourself to solve without His help is to decide it should remain unsettled, unresolved, and lasting in its power of injustice and attack. No one can be unjust to you, unless you have decided first to be unjust. And then must problems rise to block your way and peace be scattered by the winds of hate.
 
85 Unless you think that all your brothers have an equal right to miracles with you, you will not claim your right to them because you were unjust to one with equal rights. Seek to deny, and you will feel denied. Seek to deprive, and you have been deprived. A miracle can never be received because another could receive it not. Only forgiveness offers miracles. And pardon must be just to everyone.
 
86 The little problems that you keep and hide become your secret sins because you did not choose to let them be removed for you. And so they gather dust and grow until they cover everything that you perceive and leave you fair to no one. Not one right do you believe you have. And bitterness, with vengeance justified and mercy lost, condemns you as unworthy of forgiveness. The unforgiven have no mercy to bestow upon another. That is why your sole responsibility must be to take forgiveness for yourself. The miracle that you receive you give. Each one becomes an illustration of the law on which salvation rests-that justice must be done to all if anyone is to be healed. No one can lose, and everyone must benefit.
 
87 Each miracle is an example of what justice can accomplish when it is offered to everyone alike. It is received and given equally. It is awareness that giving and receiving are the same. Because it does not make the same unlike, it sees no differences where none exist. And thus it is the same for everyone because it sees no differences in them. Its offering is universal, and it teaches but one message:
 
88 What is God's belongs to everyone and is his due.

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