Lesson 286
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You Bestow an Equal Gift
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
CH 27 THE BODY AND THE DREAM
III. THE FEAR OF HEALING

19 How just are miracles! For they bestow an equal gift of full deliverance from guilt upon your brother and yourself. Your healing saves him pain as well as you, and you are healed because you wished him well. This is the law the miracle obeys; that healing sees no specialness at all. It does not come from pity but from love. And love would prove all suffering is but a vain imagining, a foolish wish with no effects. Your health is a result of your desire to see your brother with no blood upon his hands nor guilt upon his heart made heavy with the proof of sin. And what you wish is given you to see.
   
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
WORKBOOK for STUDENTS
What is the Holy Spirit
WHAT IS THE HOLY SPIRIT?

<AUDIO><VIDEO>
 
Voice and Music by CIMS SonShip Radio

*IAMBIC PENTAMETER* Example MP3
 
   The Holy Spirit mediates between
   illusions and the truth. As He must bridge
   the gap between reality and dreams,
   perception leads to knowledge through the grace
   that God has given Him, to be His gift
   to everyone who turns to Him for truth.
   Across the bridge that He provides, are dreams
   all carried to the truth, to be dispelled
   before the light of knowledge. There are sights
   and sounds forever laid aside. And where
   they were perceived before, forgiveness has
   made possible perception's tranquil end.
 
   The goal the Holy Spirit's teaching sets
   is just this end of dreams. For sights and sounds
   must be translated from the witnesses
   of fear to those of love. And when this is
   entirely accomplished, learning has
   achieved the only goal it has in truth.
   For learning, as the Holy Spirit guides
   it to the outcome He perceives for it,
   becomes the means to go beyond itself,
   to be replaced by the Eternal Truth.
 
   If you but knew how much your Father yearns
   to have you recognize your sinlessness,
   you would not let His Voice appeal in vain,
   nor turn away from His replacement for
   the fearful images and dreams you made.
   The Holy Spirit understands the means
   you made, by which you would attain what is
   forever unattainable. And if
   you offer them to Him, He will employ
   the means you made for exile to restore
   your mind to where it truly is at home.
 
   From knowledge, where He has been placed by God,
   the Holy Spirit calls to you, to let
   forgiveness rest upon your dreams, and be
   restored to sanity and peace of mind.
   Without forgiveness will your dreams remain
   to terrify you. And the memory
   of all your Father's Love will not return
   to signify the end of dreams has come.
 
   Accept your Father's gift. It is a call
   from Love to Love, that It be but Itself.
   The Holy Spirit is His gift, by Which
   the quietness of Heaven is restored
   to God's beloved Son. Would you refuse
   to take the function of completing God,
   when all He wills is that you be complete.

    ~ Original Hand Script  
 
  
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
DAILY LESSONS
SonShip Workbook
L e s s o n 286
The hush of Heaven holds my heart today.


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Voice and Music by CIMS SonShip Radio

   
    Father, how still today! How quietly
    do all things fall in place! This is the day
    that has been chosen as the time in which
    I come to understand the lesson that
    there is no need that I do anything.
    In You is every choice already made.
    In You has every conflict been resolved.
    In You is everything I hope to find
    already given me. Your peace is mine.
    My heart is quiet, and my mind at rest.
    Your Love is Heaven, and Your Love is mine.
 
   The stillness of today will give us hope
   that we have found the way, and traveled far
   along it, to a wholly certain goal.
   Today we will not doubt the end that God
   Himself has promised us. We trust in Him,
   and in our Self Who still is one with Him.
 
     ~ Original Handscript of ACIM    
  
          
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ACIM Edmonton - Sarah's Reflections 
ACIM Edmonton, CA
LESSON 286
The hush of Heaven holds my heart today.

Sarah's Commentary:

What is it that causes us to experience a frenetic day, rather than one where we rest in God in that quiet center of our Being where "The hush of Heaven holds my heart today"? It is because of our belief in the concept of time. As David Hawkins wrote in the Eye of the I:
 
"Once the pressure of time ceases, it is recognized to have been perhaps one of the primary sources of distress that accompanies the human condition. The sense of time creates stress, pressure, anxiety, fear and endless disgruntlement in a myriad of ways. The 'time stress' accompanies all activities and pursuits, creating the illusion of sequence and cause. Every human action is couched in an unspoken pressure cooker of time and the mind constantly calculates how much 'time' can be 'spent' at every activity. This results in panic, fear or worry as well as guilt, shame and anger. 'Too much time spent on this. Not enough time spent on that. There are many things we would like to do but we don't have enough time. Time will run out.' Until the sensation of time stops, one does not have any possibility of knowing what real freedom or peace feels like. "
 
That is what Eckhart Tolle talks about as well in, The Power of Now. In this present moment, there is no story to tell, there is nothing to do, there is nowhere to go, and all is perfect. All suffering ceases when we return to our Source---to the Self. In this place, we are released from the dream, all fears are seen as groundless, and all worries are foolish imaginings. With no future, there can be no fear, and with no past, there can be no regret. Whatever appears to be happening in the illusion, where the storms appear to assault us, Jesus assures us, "In You has every conflict been resolved." (W.286.1.5) It doesn't feel this way in the apparent upheavals of our lives. It seems to us there is a lot to do to address what seems to be happening. Yet if "In You is every choice already made," (W.286.1.4) we can rest in the assurance that everything has already been addressed, and all we are called to do is to choose peace and rest in God.
 
Jesus reminds us over and over that we are home in Heaven right now, and we never left our home. All that happened is we went to sleep and are dreaming we have been exiled from our home and cast into the world. Instead of seeing we are the ones who have left our home, we are feeling abandoned by God, but this whole story is already over. We are just reviewing it in our minds, believing in the sequence of time. It has already all happened. The moment we had a thought of separation, the Holy Spirit healed it. Nothing has happened in reality.
 
We are still pristine extensions of God. Everything that seems to have happened in our dream has no reality. There is nothing to atone for and nothing to fix. If we are watching a movie of blood and gore, when it is over, we don't run up to the screen and try to clean it. Nothing has happened on the screen and, in the same way, nothing has happened that could mess up our pristine nature. So let us just go forward from here. We don't have to fix anything from the past, as there is no past. Now we are called to respond to circumstances as they appear to confront us and choose to respond with peace and forgiveness. In that choice, the past is undone.
 
Today, we take the time to enter the quiet of our minds, choosing not to listen to the voice of the ego. In the quiet, we feel the safety of our Father's love. Nothing can touch us here. "You maker of a world that is not so, take rest and comfort in another world where peace abides. This world you bring with you to all the weary eyes and tired hearts that look on sin and beat its sad refrain. From you can come their rest. From you can rise a world they will rejoice to look upon, and where their hearts are glad. In you there is a vision that extends to all of them, and covers them in gentleness and light. And in this widening world of light the darkness that they thought was there is pushed away, until it is but distant shadows, far away, not long remembered as the sun shines them to nothingness. And all their 'evil' thoughts and 'sinful' hopes, their dreams of guilt and merciless revenge, and every wish to hurt and kill and die, will disappear before the sun you bring." (T. 25.IV.3.1-7) (ACIM OE T.25.V.34)
 
This is the light of our Being, which brings peace to tired hearts. It is the truth in all of us. We are all the same. Here, in the stillness, we have hope. "The stillness of today will give us hope that we have found the way, and travelled far along it to a wholly certain goal." (W.286.2.1) We only have one goal in this classroom of life, which is to wake up from this dream and remember who we are. As Lesson 287 says, "You are my goal, My Father. Only You." Where would we go but to Heaven, and why would we substitute any other goal?
 
There is nothing we need to do because we are already the Christ. We are already perfection. Sure, we have forgotten our reality. We are convinced we are less than perfect, and we now need to clean up our act and to make ourselves holy. That is not the truth. We just need to enter into the holiness of who we are by releasing all of the interfering noise of the ego mind. We just need to lay down our own thinking so we can hear the truth spoken to us by the Holy Spirit, Who is in our right minds. We are called to spend more time with God today, in the silence of our hearts and in contemplation of the truth of who we are. The truth will dawn on our minds when we are ready, but it takes discipline and preparation. There is no need to put more pressure or expectation on ourselves. We are on the right path to healing the mind. Everything that happens is perfect for our awakening. There is no need for impatience. It is important to be as gentle with ourselves as Jesus is with us in our process.
 
The interesting thing is that we keep listening to the raucous noise in our minds because we don't want to know the truth. "The memory of God comes to the quiet mind. It cannot come where there is conflict, for a mind at war against itself remembers not eternal gentleness." (T.23.I.1.1) (ACIM OE T.23.II.7) That is the current state of our minds. The Holy Spirit speaks to us all day, but it is by our own decision whether we choose to listen. In the moments of stillness where we experience the peace and where the mind is at rest, we are given hope ". . . that we have found the way, and traveled far along it to a wholly certain goal." (W.286.2.1) We are asked to trust in this process and trust in Him.
 
The question is, "Which voice will we listen to---The voice of attack and grievances or the Voice for love?" When we listen to the ego, we don't want to release our anger and our grievances. We tell stories about why we are justified in our positions. We refuse to forgive. "I have told you to think how many opportunities you have had to gladden yourself, and how many you have refused." (T.5.IN.1.2) (ACIM OE T.5.I.1) Isn't that so? We know the way to choose happiness, but we prefer to hold onto our grievances, which is simply to hold onto our suffering. In refusing to forgive, we are refusing our own happiness. We are choosing instead to keep our suffering, thinking that we are keeping our brothers accountable for what they have done to us, yet all the while we are keeping ourselves in hell.
 
A friend was recently sharing with me why his life was going so badly. Everything he said was a litany of problems in his relationship, issues with money, a boss that had it in for him, his lack of energy, why the course wasn't working for him, and on and on. In that story, the evidence seemed so clear to him that the cause of his suffering was all outside of his mind. Now he was the victim of it all. He refused to make room for the idea that maybe the cause was in his own mind and not in the world. Just maybe, it was the way he was interpreting the events of his life. Once the mind gets locked in on its way of seeing things, the ego stubbornly holds onto its version of events and there is no space made for another way. We have to start by seeing we are wrong about the way we see every situation. We need to actively choose against our way of seeing and ask with sincerity and desire to be shown another way. It is the way of transformation, and it is a radical process. It is not about adding a spiritual dimension to our lives as they are now. We resist this transformation because we still fear our awakening. As a friend recently reminded me, we really don't want to be the butterfly---we'd rather be the caterpillar with wings.
 
The lowest point in my life, after I had tried everything I knew to make my life better and none of it was working, was when I asked to be shown. It was then that the Course really came to life for me. The message I was given was that my relationship would be transformed from specialness to holiness, but in the process, I could expect a lot of conflict due to the shift in the goal for the relationship. I had received the Course a few years prior to this, and at this point of desperation, I chose to really commit to accepting that this was a message in which I could put my trust and investment. "The goal of truth requires faith." (T.17.VI.6.1) (ACIM OE T.17.VII.62) In spite of outward appearances and indeed the evidence of even more conflict, the inner knowing that I had was to remain in peace and keep focusing on the Lessons in deep trust. The result was a series of miraculous events that undeniably strengthened my commitment and dedication to this teaching. "The power set in you in whom the Holy Spirit's goal has been established is so far beyond your little conception of the infinite that you have no idea how great the strength that goes with you." (T.17.VII.7.1) (ACIM OE T.17.VIII.70)
 
The Lesson today is all about accepting the gift of the love and reality of the Holy Spirit by which the quietness of Heaven is restored to God's beloved Son. "The Voice of the Holy Spirit does not command, because It is incapable of arrogance. It does not demand, because It does not seek control. It does not overcome, because It does not attack. It merely reminds. It is compelling only because of what It reminds you of." (T.5.II.7.1-5) (ACIM OE T.5.IV.24) That is the sweet, quiet, gentle, and patient love of the Holy Spirit that stands behind every problem we can perceive, waiting for our agreement to turn it all over to Him; but we need to want to do this.

Love and blessings, Sarah
 
ACIM Original Edition
III. The Fear of Healing

13 Is healing frightening? To many, yes. For accusation is a bar to love, and damaged bodies are accusers. They stand firmly in the way of trust and peace, proclaiming that the frail can have no trust and that the damaged have no grounds for peace. Who has been injured by his brother and could love and trust him still? He has attacked and will attack again. Protect him not, because your damaged body shows that you must be protected from him. To forgive may be an act of charity, but not his due. He may be pitied for his guilt, but not exonerated. And if you forgive him his transgressions, you but add to all the guilt that he has really earned.
 
14 The unhealed cannot pardon. For they are the witnesses that pardon is unfair. They would retain the consequences of the guilt they overlook. Yet no one can forgive a sin which he believes is real. And what has consequences must be real because what it has done is there to see. Forgiveness is not pity which but seeks to pardon what it knows to be the truth. Good cannot be returned for evil, for forgiveness does not first establish sin and then forgive it. Who can say and mean, "My brother, you have injured me, and yet because I am the better of the two, I pardon you my hurt." His pardon and your hurt cannot exist together. One denies the other and must make it false.
 
15 To witness sin and yet forgive it is a paradox which reason cannot see. For it maintains what has been done to you deserves no pardon. And by giving it, you grant your brother mercy but retain the proof he is not really innocent. The sick remain accusers. They cannot forgive their brothers and themselves as well. For no one in whom true forgiveness reigns can suffer. He holds not the proof of sin before his brother's eyes. And thus he must have overlooked it and removed it from his own. Forgiveness cannot be for one and not the other. Who forgives is healed. And in his healing lies the proof that he has truly pardoned and retains no trace of condemnation that he still would hold against himself or any living thing.
 
  16 Forgiveness is not real unless it brings a healing to your brother and yourself. You must attest his sins had no effect on you to demonstrate they were not real. How else could he be guiltless? And how could his innocence be justified unless his sins have no effect to warrant guilt? Sins are beyond forgiveness just because they would entail effects which cannot be undone and overlooked entirely. In their undoing lies the proof that they were merely errors. Let yourself be healed that you may be forgiving, offering salvation to your brother and yourself. A broken body shows the mind has not been healed. A miracle of healing proves that separation is without effect. What you would prove to him, you will believe. The power of witness comes from your belief. And everything you say or do or think but testifies to what you teach to him.
 
17 Your body can be means to teach that it has never suffered pain because of him. And in its healing can it offer him mute testimony of his innocence. It is this testimony which can speak with power greater than a thousand tongues. For here is his forgiveness proved to him. A miracle can offer nothing less to him than it has given unto you. So does your healing show your mind is healed and has forgiven what he did not do. And so is he convinced his innocence was never lost and healed along with you.
 
18 Thus does the miracle undo all things the world attests can never be undone. And hopelessness and death must disappear before the ancient clarion call of life. This call has power far beyond the weak and miserable cry of death and guilt. The ancient calling of the Father to His Son, and of the Son unto his own, will yet be the last trumpet that the world will ever hear. Brother, there is no death. And this you learn when you but wish to show your brother that you had no hurt of him. He thinks your blood is on his hands, and so he stands condemned. Yet it is given you to show him by your healing that his guilt is but the fabric of a senseless dream.
 
19 How just are miracles! For they bestow an equal gift of full deliverance from guilt upon your brother and yourself. Your healing saves him pain as well as you, and you are healed because you wished him well. This is the law the miracle obeys; that healing sees no specialness at all. It does not come from pity but from love. And love would prove all suffering is but a vain imagining, a foolish wish with no effects. Your health is a result of your desire to see your brother with no blood upon his hands nor guilt upon his heart made heavy with the proof of sin. And what you wish is given you to see.
 
20 The "cost" of your serenity is his. This is the "price" the Holy Spirit and the world interpret differently. The world perceives it as a statement of the "fact" that your salvation sacrifices his. The Holy Spirit knows your healing is the witness unto his and cannot be apart from his at all. As long as he consents to suffer, you will be unhealed. Yet you can show him that his suffering is purposeless and wholly without cause. Show him your healing, and he will consent no more to suffer. For his innocence has been established in your sight and his. And laughter will replace your sighs because God's Son remembered that he is God's Son.
 
21 Who then fears healing? Only those to whom their brother's sacrifice and pain are seen to represent their own serenity. Their helplessness and weakness represents the grounds on which they justify his pain. The constant sting of guilt he suffers serves to prove that he is slave but they are free. The constant pain they suffer demonstrates that they are free because they hold him bound. And sickness is desired to prevent a shift of balance in the sacrifice. How could the Holy Spirit be deterred an instant, even less, to reason with an argument for sickness such as this? And need your healing be delayed because you pause to listen to insanity?
 
22 [Correction is not your function. It belongs to One Who knows of fairness, not of guilt. If you assume correction's role, you lose the function of forgiveness. No one can forgive until he learns correction is but to forgive and never to accuse. Alone, you cannot see they are the same, and therefore is correction not of you. Identity and function are the same, and by your function do you know yourself. And thus, if you confuse your function with the function of Another, you must be confused about yourself and who you are. What is the separation but a wish to take God's function from Him and deny that it is His? Yet if it is not His, it is not yours, for you must lose what you would take away.
 
23 [In a split mind, identity must seem to be divided. Nor can anyone perceive a function unified which has conflicting purposes and different ends. Correction, to a mind so split, must be a way to punish sins you think are yours in someone else. And thus does he become your victim, not your brother, different from you in that he is more guilty, thus in need of your correction as the one more innocent than he. This splits his function off from yours and gives you both a different role. And so you cannot be perceived as one and, with a single function, that would mean a shared identity with but one end.
 
24 [Correction you would do must separate, because that is the function given it by you. When you perceive correction is the same as pardon, then you also know the Holy Spirit's Mind and yours are one. And so your own Identity is found. Yet must He work with what is given Him, and you allow Him only half your mind. And thus He represents the other half and seems to have a different purpose from the one you cherish and you think is yours. Thus does your function seem divided, with a half in opposition to a half. And these two halves appear to represent a split within a self perceived as two.]
 
25 Consider how this self perception must extend, and do not overlook the fact that every thought extends because that is its purpose, being what it really is. From an idea of self as two, there comes a necessary view of function split between the two. And what you would correct is only half the error, which you think is all of it. Your brother's sins become the central target for correction, lest your errors and his own be seen as one. Yours are mistakes, but his are sins and not the same as yours. His merit punishment, while yours in fairness should be overlooked.
 
26 In this interpretation of correction, your own mistakes you will not even see. The focus of correction has been placed outside yourself on one who cannot be a part of you while this perception lasts. What is condemned can never be returned to its accuser, who hated it and hates it still. This is your brother, focus of your hate, unworthy to be part of you and thus outside yourself-the other half which is denied. And only what is left without his presence is perceived as all of you. To this remaining half the Holy Spirit must represent the other half until you recognize it is the other half. And this He does by giving both of you a function that is one, not different.
 
27 Correction is the function given both, but neither one alone. And when it is fulfilled as shared, it must correct mistakes in both of you. It cannot leave mistakes in one unhealed and set the other free. That is divided purpose which cannot be shared, and so it cannot be the function which the Holy Spirit sees as His. And you can rest assured that He will not fulfill a function He cannot understand and recognize as His. For only thus can He keep yours preserved intact, despite your separate views of what your function is. If He upheld divided function, you were lost indeed. His inability to see His goal divided and distinct for each of you preserves your Self from being made aware of any function other than Its own. And thus is healing given both of you.
 
28 Correction must be left to One Who knows correction and forgiveness are the same. With half a mind, this is not understood. Leave then correction to the Mind that is united, functioning as one because It is not split in purpose, and conceives a single function as Its only one. Here is the function given It conceived to be Its own and not apart from that Its Giver keeps because it has been shared. In His acceptance of this function lies the means whereby your mind is unified. His single purpose unifies the halves of you which you perceive as separate. And each forgives the other, that he may accept his other half as part of him.

 
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