Lesson 274
Ensure the Door Be Opened
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9 Condemn him not by seeing him within the rotting prison where he sees himself. It is your special function to ensure the door be opened that he may come forth to shine on you and give you back the gift of freedom by receiving it of you. What is the Holy Spirit's special function but to release the holy Son of God from the imprisonment he made to keep himself from justice? Could your function be a task apart and separate from His Own?        
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CHAPTER 26 I-II, 1-9
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   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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SonShip Workbook
L e s s o n 274
Today belongs to Love. Let me not fear. 
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    Father, today I would let all things be
    as You created them, and give Your Sons
    the honor due their holiness; the love
    of brother to his brother and his friend.
    Through this I am redeemed. Through this as well
    the truth will enter where illusions were,
    light will replace all darkness, and Your Son
    will know he is as You created him.
   A special blessing comes to us today
   from Him Who is our Father. Give this day
   to Him and there will be no fear today,
   because the day is given unto Love.
     ~ Original Handscript of ACIM  
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ACIM Edmonton - Sarah's Reflections ACIM Edmonton, CA
Today belongs to Love. Let me not fear.

Sarah's Commentary:  

Are we ready for a day that belongs entirely to love---a day that belongs to God? If not, can we be content and satisfied to be on this learning journey where Jesus shows us how such a day can be achieved? On our own, with the ego as a guide, we place our body in its service. We think we know what we need for our happiness and send the body off on hopeless missions in pursuit of trivial goals. We don't know our own best interests. We are confused about what is painful and what is pleasurable. The ego wants it that way so it keeps us looking for what cannot be found. As we turn more and more to the only Teacher, who does know, we are given guidance on where to go, what to do, what to say, and to who. This requires asking, listening, and following in everything we do.
To have a day where love prevails requires that we learn to walk this path with our brother, extending "the love of brother to his brother and his Friend." (W.274.1.1) In other words, as we see the Christ in our brother, we come to know our own innocence as well. We are One. We have no separate interests. There is only love and nothing else. Only in this recognition do we remember our reality. Thus, we experience the stillness and the peace within us. Our decision to listen to the voice of the ego blocks this experience from awareness, but we can decide we have been wrong and make another choice. As we start to recognize that there is another way of looking at everything, we become willing to ask for the miracle in the face of any problem we seem to encounter.
A day of undisturbed tranquility may not be feasible as yet because we may not yet be ready. In other words, our fear is still too prevalent. We may not yet be sufficiently motivated to turn to the Holy Spirit in every moment. God may not yet be our only undivided goal. This is not a reason for self-judgment or discouragement, as Jesus continually reminds us that the events of our lives are a perfect classroom for the undoing of the wrong mind. He tells us that consistent peace and tranquility are always available in each moment when we are ready for it. The outcome of our journey on this path to enlightenment is guaranteed. It is certain that we will achieve perfect peace because it has already been accomplished and has only been awaiting our acceptance. We just need to continue to do our part. We need not compare ourselves with anyone or use anyone as a measuring stick for our own progress. To do so is merely to focus on our perceived lacks and needs and to crucify ourselves. Thus, we pray: "Father, today I would let all things be as You created them,..." (W.274.1.1) We let all things be exactly as they are. Where we are in our journey is what we are currently ready for. There is no reason for self-recrimination or guilt, which is the ego's response to our perceived lack of progress on this path. It is important to remember that Jesus says that we are incapable of judging our gains from our retreats. What I call a setback may be where I have made the greatest gain. Thus, we can be content that all is perfectly orchestrated for our highest good.
We achieve a day of quietness, stillness, and peace by learning to dismiss our disturbances throughout the day. What are these disturbances? They are nothing but our own thoughts in relation to the meaning we give to events and situations that come up in our day. And when these thoughts come up, what are we to do? The most helpful thing we can do in the moment is to stop, step back, take a breath, and turn to Spirit. And when feelings come up, take time to be with them and inquire as to their source. The source of our feelings is always thoughts we are holding in the mind based on beliefs. What are you holding as a belief in order for these feelings to arise? What are you projecting onto others? Realize that whatever the judgments you put on your brother, there is some form of this judgment where there is self-condemnation. We are being invited to accept responsibility for our reactions and judgments as having their origin in our own unhealed minds. Now we come to a place of acceptance of everything as helpful for our healing. With a willingness to see that we have been wrong in our interpretations, we ask for the help of the Holy Spirit to give us His interpretation. Only my own mind gives strength and power to the thoughts I am holding. We remind ourselves today, with each disturbing situation, "Today belongs to love. Let me not fear." (W.274)
We may wonder how is it possible to see innocence in our brothers, who seem to betray us, hurt us, make demands on us, or attack us? How can we see them with the eyes of Christ, which is to see their purity? Ultimately, we start by recognizing that it is our own self-judgments that we lay on our brothers for their sins. Everything we project onto them originates in our own minds. Thus, to continue to hold judgments against anyone is to hurt ourselves. We only see in others our own self-judgment and self-attack. Love sees only innocence regardless of the behaviors exhibited, and when we see guilt, it is our own guilt projected out. Yet, with each blessing that we give a brother instead of judgment, we take a step in the direction of truly seeing who he is and thus claiming our own sinlessness.
Why do we not know the truth about ourselves now? The truth is unknown because we have chained ourselves to our specialness. In other words, we are hostage to the ego rather than host to God. We are hostage to our obsessive thoughts. Specialness seems like a good thing in the world, but Jesus takes a different perspective on it. Specialness not only sets us apart, but it sets us above our brothers. It is winning at someone else's expense. It is a thought system of "one or the other." This thought system is what established our separate identities by annihilating God. It is a thought system where the Son of God waged war against His Father. It is a thought system of win or lose. God had to lose for us to win our separate identity. Now we bring this thought system into every encounter and when we do, we put our own needs ahead of anyone else's. It is all about bargaining to get our needs met.
None of this makes us guilty. Jesus says, all that has happened is that we have failed to gain. "Here is deception doubled, for the one who is deceived will not perceive that he has merely failed to gain." (W.133.9.3) In other words, we actually want to keep the guilt and to suffer as a way to keep our separate identity and our specialness. This is what we think we gained in our separation from God. When we see we have just made a mistake and are willing to take responsibility by withdrawing all blame from our brother, we become willing to see our own mind as the cause of our experience. Now we can make a different choice. We can use every situation for healing. We can allow all things to be exactly as they are. By honoring our brothers, we see our equality with them, and with each joining with a brother, we heal the belief that we are these separate beings in competition with each other. In every opportunity that we have to bring our misperceptions of our brother back to our own minds for healing, we reclaim the Oneness which is reflected in this world as sameness.
Today, our way to God is by extending love, blessings, and, yes, honor to our brothers. We give them the appreciation they deserve because of who they are in their creation. With love, there can be no fear. The choice for love casts out all fear. At the core of our identity, and the identity of all of our brothers, is our divine innocence, which is the love of a brother for a brother in recognition of our sameness and the recognition of our Friend. To love God is to love our brother. Thus, when we devote a day to God, we are devoting it to our brothers. When we give a day committed to forgiveness, which is a reflection of God's Love, we can experience peace, joy, patience, gentleness, and contentment, which is our inheritance. Our self-absorption with our problems and with our uniqueness and specialness is what keeps us from extending love to our brothers because our needs and issues are always at the forefront. When we see that our brother's interests are the same as our own, we join the ranks of teachers of God.
Today, our goal is to make space for blessings to extend through us. Set your intention to give this day to God, and whenever fear thoughts come up---or any feelings of dismay, discouragement, or depression---allow them to be given over so that the Holy Spirit can pull the plug on them. Remind yourself that Love is your goal today and thus, "Let me not fear." (W.274) Fear is a sign that we have chosen against the love that we are. It is a sign that we have turned to the ego as our teacher. Yet, what is wonderful is how easily we can choose to correct our mistake and return to love. It does not matter how long it takes as long as we are using time for its intended purpose for healing the mind. Ultimately, we start to experience so much joy that is not based on getting anything we think will satisfy us. We remember our purpose. We remember why we came here. And everything we previously thought was important starts to fall away.
Love and blessings, Sarah

A Course in Miracles
ACIM Original Edition
Chapter Twenty Six

The Transition  
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CHAPTER 26 I-II, 1-9
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I. Introduction 
1 In the "dynamics" of attack is sacrifice a key idea. It is the pivot upon which all compromise, all desperate attempts to strike a bargain, and all conflicts achieve a seeming balance. It is the symbol of the central theme that somebody must lose. Its focus on the body is apparent, for it is always an attempt to limit loss. The body is itself a sacrifice---a giving up of power in the name of saving just a little for yourself. To see a brother in another body separate from yours is the expression of a wish to see a little part of him and sacrifice the rest. Look at the world, and you will see nothing attached to anything beyond itself. All seeming entities can come a little nearer or go a little farther off but cannot join.
II. The "Sacrifice" of Oneness 
2 The world you see is based on "sacrifice" of oneness. It is a picture of a complete disunity and total lack of joining. Around each entity is built a wall so seeming solid that it looks as if what is inside can never reach without, and what is out can never reach and join with what is locked away within the wall. Each part must sacrifice the other part to keep itself complete. For if they joined, each one would lose its own identity, and by their separation are their selves maintained.
3 The little that the body fences off becomes the self, preserved through sacrifice of all the rest. And all the rest must lose this little part, remaining incomplete to keep its own identity intact. In this perception of yourself, the body's loss would be a sacrifice indeed. For sight of bodies becomes the sign that sacrifice is limited and something still remains for you alone. And for this little to belong to you are limits placed on everything outside, just as they are on everything you think is yours. For giving and receiving are the same. And to accept the limits of a body is to impose these limits on each brother whom you see. For you must see him as you see yourself.
4 The body is a loss and can be made to sacrifice. And while you see your brother as a body, apart from you and separate in his cell, you are demanding sacrifice of him and you. What greater sacrifice could be demanded than that God's Son perceive himself without his Father? And his Father be without His Son? Yet every sacrifice demands that they be separate and without the other. The memory of God must be denied if any sacrifice is asked of anyone. What witness to the wholeness of God's Son is seen within a world of separate bodies, however much he witnesses to truth? He is invisible in such a world. Nor can his song of union and of love be heard at all. Yet is it given him to make the world recede before his song and sight of him replace the body's eyes.
5 Those who would see the witnesses to truth instead of to illusion merely ask that they might see a purpose in the world that gives it sense and makes it meaningful. Without your special function has this world no meaning for you. Yet it can become a treasure house as rich and limitless as Heaven itself. No instant passes here in which your brother's holiness cannot be seen, to add a limitless supply to every meager scrap and tiny crumb of happiness that you allot yourself.
6 You can lose sight of oneness, but can not make sacrifice of its reality. Nor can you lose what you would sacrifice nor keep the Holy Spirit from His task of showing you that it has not been lost. Hear then the song your brother sings to you. And let the world recede and take the rest his witness offers on behalf of peace. But judge him not, for you will hear no song of liberation for yourself nor see what it is given him to witness to that you may see it and rejoice with him. Make not his holiness a sacrifice to your belief in sin. You sacrifice your innocence with his and die each time you see in him a sin deserving death.
7 Yet every instant can you be reborn and given life again. His holiness gives life to you, who cannot die because his sinlessness is known to God and can no more be sacrificed by you than can the light in you be blotted out because he sees it not. You who would make a sacrifice of life and make your eyes and ears bear witness to the death of God and of His holy Son, think not that you have power to make of them what God willed not they be. In Heaven God's Son is not imprisoned in a body nor is sacrificed in solitude to sin.
8 And as he is in Heaven, so must he be eternally and everywhere. He is the same forever---born again each instant, untouched by time, and far beyond the reach of any sacrifice of life or death. For neither did he make, and only one was given him by One Who knows His gifts can never suffer sacrifice and loss. God's justice rests in gentleness upon His Son and keeps him safe from all injustice the world would lay upon him. Could it be that you could make his sins reality and sacrifice his Father's Will for him?
9 Condemn him not by seeing him within the rotting prison where he sees himself. It is your special function to ensure the door be opened that he may come forth to shine on you and give you back the gift of freedom by receiving it of you. What is the Holy Spirit's special function but to release the holy Son of God from the imprisonment he made to keep himself from justice? Could your function be a task apart and separate from His Own?
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