Lesson 276
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Our Brother's Holiness
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
CH 26 THE TRANSITION
II. THE "SACRIFICE" OF ONENESS

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.

ACIM OE CH 26.II.5      
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
WORKBOOK for STUDENTS
What is the Christ_
WHAT IS THE CHRIST?

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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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DAILY LESSON
SonShip Workbook
 L e s s o n 276
The Word of God
is given me to speak.


<AUDIO>
Voice and Music by CIMS SonShip Radio 
        
   What is the Word of God? "My Son is pure,
   and holy as Myself." And thus did God
   become the Father of the Son He loves,
   for thus was he created. This the Word
   His Son did not create with Him, because
   in this His Son was born. Let us accept
   His Fatherhood, and all is given us.
   Deny we were created in His Love,
   and we deny our Self, to be unsure
   of who we are, of who our Father is,
   and for what purpose we have come. And yet,
   we need but to acknowledge Him Who gave
   His Word to us in our creation, to
   remember Him and so recall our Self.
 
    Father, Your Word is mine. And it is this
    that I would speak to all my brothers, who
    are given me to cherish as my own,
    as I am loved and blessed and saved by You.
           
     ~ Original Handscript of ACIM  
  
          
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ACIM Edmonton - Sarah's Reflections 
ACIM Edmonton, CA

LESSON 276
The Word of God is given me to speak.

Sarah's Commentary:  
  
What is the word of God given me to speak today? It is this: "My Son is pure and holy as Myself." (W.276.1.2) That is what Jesus wants us to understand---we all share the Oneness of the Christ Self, have never separated from the Oneness, and our reality is as pure and holy as God Himself. The word of God is a reflection of the Atonement Principle. It is the assurance we could never separate from our Source. Jesus wants us to see that what we have made of ourselves is not the truth. We are as God created us in His image and with all of His attributes. No matter what we think we have done, we simply cannot change the truth. Now we just have to learn to accept it. "Let us accept His Fatherhood and all is given us." (W.276.1.5) To accept this is to accept the truth of the Christ Self that we are, the truth about our brothers, and the truth that God is our Father. We resist God's Will in the belief His Will is not in our own best interests. We fear He will require us to sacrifice what we think we want and need for our happiness. This reflects not only our problem with authority but our mistrust of God and of the love we are. Thus, we maintain control, rather than surrender our ideas and trust in His Love for us.
 
This reminds me of the movie, The Horse Whisperer. The horse named Pilgrim has been crippled in a riding accident, as is the girl whose leg is badly injured and must be amputated. Robert Redford, as the Horse Whisperer, approaches these two with great patience, just as Jesus works with us when we don't trust that he only wants our own highest good. Booker (Redford) approaches both with a very gentle touch, recognizing the only way he will win their trust is with total love and acceptance. He is also dealing with the mother, who feels her safety lies in controlling everything, even though she herself, an alcoholic, is not in control of her life. Pilgrim, the horse, finally succumbs to Booker, though it requires that he exert some gentle force in hobbling Pilgrim until he finally gives in. It is a reflection of our own stubborn egos of not always giving in easily. We dig in our heels and insist, "I want it thus!" which is the ego's mantra in life. We insist on being right about who we are rather than choosing happiness.
 
We think we are independent of God and have made of ourselves what we are. We prefer to live with our own crippling thoughts of unworthiness and self-attack rather than fall into the arms of Love. It seems insane, and it is. There is a familiarity and a comfort in staying with what we have always believed. Change frightens us because the first change we experienced was the separation. Yet Jesus reminds us that we were created as an extension of God's Love, and we cannot make ourselves over into something we are not. Once we completely submit to this truth, we will have overcome our investment in our independence, but it is a process of undoing. Independence is a conspiracy against our own best interests. In order to get away from painful emotions brought about by our guilt, we learned to dissociate from them, pretending not to care. We maintain control and need to have things our way so we won't be hurt again. We build a protective defense system around ourselves, both physically and psychologically. Now, we are afraid of true partnership and joining, where our vulnerabilities will be exposed. We no longer trust those whom we believe are the cause of our painful emotions. When we are willing to see that the pain is from our own unhealed minds, we welcome the opportunity to bring our issues for healing, which is the only way to remember who we are.
 
I remember how it was as a five-year-old, living in Sweden in a refugee camp, feeling the chaos of life around me, and feeling the lack of protection from the adults in my life. It seems I made a decision, at that point, that I could only rely on myself. It seemed to me there was no protection in this dangerous world. It was as if I made a decision to kick God off the throne and instead decided that I was now taking over and managed life myself. It was a process of dissociation from my need for love and protection. When we dissociate, we pretend it does not matter. The pain and heartbreak do not get expressed, and thus there is no healing. The emotions get buried until we are ready to look at them and commit to doing the healing work. It was not until I recognized and acknowledged that I had chosen this whole story of victimhood at the hands of those seemingly uncaring adults that I could choose to forgive.
 
We all have our own version of stories of victimization and thus justify our anger and attack and project our own guilt. We feel guilt for having made ourselves, believing we are separate from God, all the while making others responsible for our condition. "A concept of the self is made by you. It bears no likeness to yourself at all. It is an idol, made to take the place of your reality as Son of God." (T.31.V.2.1-3) (ACIM OE T.31.V.44) The guilt we hold over having left the love we are is now projected out. We need those who have hurt us and betrayed us to be there so we can hold them responsible for our pain instead of ourselves. Thus, they are seen as the guilty ones whom we hope will be punished, while God will see us as the innocent victims we believe we are. Seeing others as guilty justifies our attacks on them in our minds.
 
You may notice there is a kind of satisfaction in telling our stories of victimhood. It is the satisfaction of expressing revenge for what others have done to us. But notice, too, that none of these strategies gets rid of the guilt in our minds. In fact, they do the opposite. They bring on more guilt because every time we attack, we feel guiltier. The ego's ploy is to keep the guilt intact in our minds while projecting it onto others. "'I am the thing you made of me, and as you look on me, you stand condemned because of what I am'." (T.31.V.5) (ACIM OE T.31.V.47) What is now required for our healing is to take responsibility for our own guilt, rather than holding others responsible for our pain. We are able to see what we are holding in our wrong minds, against ourselves, by looking at what we are projecting and how we are holding others responsible for our lack of peace. Thus, projection can serve a very useful purpose in our healing as it allows us to see in our brother what is unhealed in ourselves, and thus he is our savior.
 
We are not what we have made of ourselves. We are not these bodies and personalities that we think we are. We are the Son of God, pure and holy. That is our true reality as the Christ. As we are told over and over again by Jesus, we are as God created us. The Atonement Principle assures us that we cannot change ourselves. We cannot separate from God. We can believe we have separated and forget the truth of our Being, but we cannot change it. It seems arrogant to accept the magnificence and the mightiness of the Self we are, yet Jesus says it is arrogant not to accept God's word about who we are. Do we really know better than God?
 
We are reliving the original tiny tick of time when we chose the ego, but now we can see the consequences of that choice, and we can choose again in each instant. Do we want to attack or do we want to forgive? Do we want to give our brother a gift of thorns or lilies? The choice is ours, and with each choice that we make for Heaven, we open more deeply to the truth of who we are. The truth has never left us and is waiting for our acknowledgment. It is all in our court.
 
"Deny we were created in His Love and we deny our Self, to be unsure of Who we are, of Who our Father is, and for what purpose we have come." (W.276.1.6) Isn't this how we feel? We feel uncertain of who we are and wonder what meaning there is to our existence, how we got here, and what our purpose is. The only reason we have this uncertainty is because of our denial of our Creator, Who is the Author of our existence. We have not made ourselves. When we recognize how wrong we have been about everything, we can start on the path of asking to be taught. We now turn to the Holy Spirit, Who is in our right minds, and we ask for His help in how to respond to everyone in our lives. When we turn to the ego, we respond with anger and attack, justifying our behavior with the belief that those we attack caused our reactions. The Holy Spirit sees every attack as a call for love and understanding. Now we are called to hear beyond the words and listen to the heart of our brothers to hear their call for love and understanding. We are called to share that which we would learn. We are called to embrace everything coming at us, effortlessly, recognizing it is all there for our healing. This allows us to be in the flow of the Spirit.
 
My brothers were ". . . given me to cherish as my own, as I am loved and blessed and saved by You," my Father. (W.276.2.2) Today, we extend God's Word to everyone we meet or think about, and we make space, through forgiveness, for blessings of light and love to shine through us. The message we want to give everyone today is that they are not separate from us. We are the same. We have not changed ourselves, and we have never left God. We give this message to everyone in whatever form we are prompted to give it. Today, we watch our minds when we resist extending this message and inquire as to what we are choosing instead so it can be healed.

Love and blessings, Sarah
 
ACIM Original Edition
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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