Lesson 355
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ACIM Original Edition
 A COURSE IN MIRACLES
   MANUAL FOR TEACHERS
#18. HOW IS CORRECTION MADE?
 
1 Correction of a lasting nature---and only this is true correction---cannot be made until the teacher of God has ceased to confuse interpretation with fact or illusion with truth. If he argues with his pupil about a magic thought, attacks it, tries to establish its error or demonstrate its falsity, he is but witnessing to its reality. Depression is then inevitable, for he has "proved," both to his pupil and himself that it is their task to escape from what is real. And this can only be impossible. Reality is changeless. Magic thoughts are but illusions. Otherwise salvation would be only the same age-old impossible dream in but another form. Yet the dream of salvation has new content. It is not the form alone in which the difference lies.     
    
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
DAILY LESSON
WHAT AM I?
What Am I
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*IAMBIC PENTAMETER*
WHAT IS IAMBIC PENTAMETER?
 
    I am God's Son, complete and healed and whole,
    shining in the reflection of His Love.
    In me is His creation sanctified
    and guaranteed eternal life. In me
    is love perfected, fear impossible,
    and joy established without opposite.
    I am the holy home of God Himself.
    I am the Heaven where His Love abides.
    I am His holy Sinlessness Itself,
    for in my purity abides His own.
 
   Our use for words is almost over now.
   Yet in the final days of this one year
   we gave to God together, you and I,
   we found a single purpose that we shared.
   And thus you joined with me. So what I am
   are you as well. The truth of what we are
   is not for words to speak of nor describe.
   Yet we can realize our function here,
   and words can speak of this, and teach it, too,
   if we exemplify the words in us.
 
   We are the bringers of salvation. We
   accept our part as Saviours of the world,
   which through our joint forgiveness is redeemed.
   And this, our gift, is therefore given us.
   We look on everyone as brother, and
   perceive all things as kindly and as good.
   We do not seek a function that is past
   the gates of Heaven. Knowledge will return
   when we have done our part. We are concerned
   only with giving welcome to the truth.
 
   Ours are the eyes through which Christ's vision sees
   a world redeemed from every thought of sin.
   Ours are the ears which hear the Voice of God
   proclaim the world as sinless. Ours the minds
   which join together as we bless the world.
   And from the oneness that we have attained
   we call to all our brothers, asking them
   to share our peace and consummate our joy.
 
   We are the holy messengers of God,
   who speak for Him. And carrying His Word
   to everyone whom He has sent to us,
   we learn that It is written on our hearts.
   And thus our minds are changed about the aim
   for which we came and which we seek to serve.
   We bring glad tidings to the Son of God,
   who thought he suffered. Now is he redeemed.
   And as he sees the gate of Heaven stand
   open before him, he will enter in
   and disappear into the Heart of God.
 
    ~ Original Hand Script  
 
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
DAILY LESSON
SonShip Workbook
L e s s o n 355
There is no end to all the peace and joy
And all the miracles that I will give
When I accept God's word. Why not today?

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    Why should I wait, my Father, for the joy
    You promised me? For You will keep Your Word
    You gave Your Son in exile. I am sure
    my treasure waits for me, and I need but
    reach out my hand to find it. Even now
    my fingers touch it. It is very close.
    I need not wait an instant more, to be
    at peace forever. It is You I choose,
    and my Identity along with You.
    Your Son would be Himself, and know You as
    His Father and Creator and his Love.
  . 
        ~ Original Handscript of ACIM February 12, 1971
 
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ACIM Edmonton - Sarah's Reflections ACIM Edmonton, CA
LESSON 355
There is no end to all the peace and joy
And all the miracles that I will give
When I accept God's word. Why not today? 
  
Sarah's Commentary:  
 
Jesus is helping us to see that, beyond this seeming reality of the body and the world of suffering and pain, peace, joy, and miracles are being held out to us in this very moment. He says, "Why not claim them?" "Do we like what we have made?" "Is our experience here one of consistent peace?" "What keeps us from accepting the truth about ourselves and who we really are as the perfect glorious Self at peace forever?" Clearly, we are not yet completely convinced. We fear that if we let go of what we are holding onto, we will disappear. As Byron Katie asks, "Who would you be without that thought?"
 
Jesus understands our fear and trepidation, which is why he keeps assuring us of what awaits us. He keeps reminding us that this is a world of pain and ultimately death. Even though none of it is real, we still experience it that way. Ultimately, he knows that we will make the choice to embrace who we are and to return to our Creator, whom we have never left, except in dreams. God has kept His Word, which came with us in our seeming exile, that we are exactly as we were created. We have all the attributes of God. Now Jesus waits patiently and lovingly and will wait as long as it takes for us to accept the truth of what we are. But as long as there is fear in the mind, there is healing to be undertaken. Fear is what keeps love at bay.
 
When the desire is strong and the motivation and willingness to undertake the discipline called for is consistent, we are ready to take the hand of Jesus, who helps us look at everything from his perspective. He helps us to see its nothingness. He awaits the memory to return to us of who we are---the One Son who never left our Father. His patience with us is infinite, but why would we want to wait any longer to release pain and suffering. We can choose to ignore the temptations that come our way to throw away our peace.
 
As I write this, I am feeling irritation that Don is late coming home and has not called. Finally, the phone rings. In this moment, I recognize I can throw some guilt his way. I can remind him that he is late and has reneged on his commitment to being home at a certain time. I recognize I now have a choice to go with the temptation to throw guilt at him or to choose to step back and bring peace. I can simply express gratitude for the call. Who will I turn to for guidance in this moment? Will it be the ego or the Holy Spirit? My decision will determine the outcome that I experience. Happiness is not contingent on what my brother does or does not do. My decision to free him frees us both. What I give I receive. That is the law of love. When we see how unhappy listening to the ego has made us and how much we suffer, we become more willing to choose another way. We choose to let Spirit guide us. Jesus asks, why would we want to continue to invite pain when we have another choice that we can make. We must be willing to look with honesty and courage at our motivation. Peace and joy are in us, awaiting our acceptance. When I can't make the choice in the moment, I recognize that I must be honest with my brother in expressing what I am feeling. The purpose of such expression is to use it for the purpose of recognizing that I am responsible for how I feel, not him. It is all for healing my mind. It is not for making my brother feel more guilt.
 
The reality is that we are always choosing between two thought systems. We are at every moment, choosing the ego or the Holy Spirit. Which side of the ledger am I on at any moment? Am I choosing peace, love, joy, forgiveness, ease, kindness, and truth, or am I choosing the ego programming, which keeps me in fear and distress? Our egoic reactions appear to be involuntary, yet they are under our own control. We are responsible for the decisions that keep us unaware of the state of peace and joy that can be chosen at any moment. Why not now? "Why should I wait, my Father, for the joy You promised me?" (W.355.1.1)
 
Jesus reminds us, "Being afraid seems to be involuntary; something beyond your own control. Yet I have said already that only constructive acts should be involuntary. My control can take over everything that does not matter, while my guidance can direct everything that does, if you so choose. Fear cannot be controlled by me, but it can be self-controlled. Fear prevents me from giving you my control." (T.2.VI.1.1-5) (ACIM OE T.2.IV.72 "You believe that ' being afraid ' is involuntary...") Jesus is dedicated to helping us, but he needs our help to do so. If I am not experiencing the peace and joy available to me right now, it is by my own decision. It is all about willingness. If I am not willing to humble myself, see how wrong I am about everything I perceive, release my ideas of how to respond to situations in my life, allow myself to be vulnerable, give up control over my own life, and accept everything happening as perfect and necessary for my classroom, then I am keeping myself in fear. Every minute of my day, I am making this choice. It is a choice to attack or to forgive. It is a choice to release my fearful thoughts to the Holy Spirit, or to hold onto grievances.
 
Everyone in this world is searching for peace, joy, and happiness. Everything we do or have done in this world is about seeking pleasure and avoiding pain, yet our efforts are misguided because we are looking to the wrong guide for the answers. The ego is always willing to come to the rescue with another idol, but Jesus keeps reminding us that the ego's mantra is, "Seek, but do not find." Because we do not know who we are, we can't know our own best interests. As the Course reminds us, our greatest advances, in our eyes, can be our biggest setbacks, and what we judge to be our biggest setbacks can be our greatest advances. When we admit that we don't know and are willing to surrender to another Teacher, we "step back and let Him lead the way," (W.155) instead of relying on our very limited understanding.
 
"Tolerance for pain may be high, but it is not without limit. Eventually everyone begins to recognize, however dimly, that there must be a better way." (T.2.III.3.5-6) (ACIM OE T.2.II.48 "Pain thresholds can be high...") In that realization, we become more willing and ready to hear God's Word. His Word reflects the Atonement Principle. This Principle affirms that we have never changed ourselves. We remain as we were created. As we accept this truth, our motivation to be disciplined in our practice of the Lesson is enhanced.
 
Our part is to become aware of how the ego thought system came about and to recognize how it works in our own lives. To break the cycle of sin, guilt, and fear, we are called to take responsibility for our projections. Forgiveness requires that we see what is in our unconscious minds, be willing to release it to the Holy Spirit, and leave it with Him. The error we make is to think we can fix ourselves, but it is not our job to do so. In fact, the ego will never undo itself. It is the Holy Spirit that shines away the darkness when we give it over to Him. It requires trust in being willing to surrender our own answers for our lives and turn to One Who knows. He needs our cooperation in this process, so He can lead us gently and patiently to the truth of who we are. The Holy Spirit helps us to see that the peace, joy, and love we seek is already in us. There is nothing in the world, in any form, whether it is the right partner, the right job, the right house, or the right stuff, or even everything going our way, that can bring us these gifts.
 
I recently watched the Michael Morton story on CNN called, The Unreal Dream. He was wrongly accused of murdering his wife and as a result, spent 25 years in prison. Most of those years were spent in anger at the injustice of it all. He said he held up fairly well, learning the ways of the prison system and, ultimately, getting a college degree. Over time, he adjusted to prison life and even developed some strong friendships. It was not until his only son wrote to tell him that he no longer wished to be his son that he totally broke down. In other words, he finally let himself become completely undone and called out to God. He heard nothing but silence until ten days later, on a normal day of regular routines, something changed. He went to bed, plugged into a radio station, and remarkably heard harp music, which he says he had never heard before. Then everything around him lit up in a golden light, and he knew he was in the presence of God. Of course, everything changed after that. He was released, reunited with his son, and knew with certainty that God is all there is and can be totally trusted. "Tolerance for pain may be high but it is not without limit." (T.2.III.3.5-6) (ACIM OE T.2.II.48) Every situation, even prison, can be used for our highest good. He said it had become a kind of Ashram for him, where distractions of normal life in the world were severely limited, and this gave him a perfect opportunity to look within. As he left the prison, his fellow inmates wept as they saw what a gift he had been in their lives through his demonstration.
 
Our function is to "look on everyone as brother, and perceive all things as kindly and as good." (W.PII.What Am I?Q14.3.4) In the face of attacking behaviors from others, to look on all things kindly can be challenging because we still believe the cause of lack of peace in our lives comes from outside our own mind. We have reversed cause and effect when we see the cause of our lack of peace in outside events that seem to be happening to us. Yet when we take responsibility for our projections, we have gratitude for every brother who shows us a reflection of what is in our own mind. Our only responsibility, as miracle workers, is to accept the Atonement for ourselves. There is no one to blame.
 
We see violence and injustice in the world, and we blame others for what seems to be happening. We want to see it fixed. We don't want to accept that it is our own perfect script. What we do is to try to manage effects rather than the cause of our own self-attacking thoughts. The only place where peace can be found is in our own mind. What the miracle does is that "It merely looks on devastation, and reminds the mind that what it sees is false." (W.PII.What Is a Miracle?Q13.1.2) Only through forgiveness and willingness to surrender our way can we remember who we are.
 
While the ego would use the world to forget God, the Holy Spirit uses all of our experiences to help us remember God. It is up to us, but we are not alone in this. The truth is already in us, waiting for its acceptance. Why wait? Why not accept God's word today?
 
Love and blessings, Sarah
huemmert@shaw.ca  
A Course in Miracles
MANUAL for TEACHERS 
ACIM Original Edition
Play Audio
MANUAL #18, 1-5
Voice and Music by Martin Weber, CIMS SonShip Radio
 
 
#18. How is Correction Made?  
   
1 Correction of a lasting nature---and only this is true correction---cannot be made until the teacher of God has ceased to confuse interpretation with fact or illusion with truth. If he argues with his pupil about a magic thought, attacks it, tries to establish its error or demonstrate its falsity, he is but witnessing to its reality. Depression is then inevitable, for he has "proved," both to his pupil and himself that it is their task to escape from what is real. And this can only be impossible. Reality is changeless. Magic thoughts are but illusions. Otherwise salvation would be only the same age-old impossible dream in but another form. Yet the dream of salvation has new content. It is not the form alone in which the difference lies.
 
2 God's teachers' major lesson is to learn how to react to magic thoughts wholly without anger. Only in this way can they proclaim the truth about themselves. Through them, the Holy Spirit can now speak of the reality of the Son of God. Now He can remind the world of sinlessness, the one unchanged, unchangeable condition of all that God created. Now He can speak the Word of God to listening ears and bring Christ's vision to the eyes that see. Now is He free to teach all minds the truth of what they are, so they will gladly be returned to Him. And now is guilt forgiven, overlooked completely in His sight and in God's Word.
 
3 Anger but screeches, "Guilt is real." Reality is blotted out as this insane belief is taken as replacement for God's Word. The body's eyes now "see"; its ears alone are thought to hear. Its little space and tiny breath become the measure of reality. And truth becomes diminutive and meaningless. Correction has one answer to all this and to the world that rests on this:
 
4 You but mistake interpretation for the truth. And you are wrong. But a mistake is not a sin, nor has reality been taken from its throne by your mistakes. God reigns forever, and His laws alone prevail upon you and upon the world. His love remains the only thing there is. Fear is illusion, for you are like Him.
 
5 In order to heal, it thus becomes essential for the teacher of God to let all his own mistakes be corrected. If he senses even the faintest hint of irritation in himself as he responds to anyone, let him instantly realize that he has made an interpretation that is not true. Then let him turn within to his Eternal Guide, and let Him judge what the response should be. So is he healed, and in his healing is his pupil healed with him. The sole responsibility of God's teacher is to accept the Atonement for himself. Atonement means correction, or the undoing of errors. When this has been accomplished, the teacher of God becomes a miracle worker by definition. His sins have been forgiven him, and he no longer condemns himself. How can he then condemn anyone? And who is there whom his forgiveness can fail to heal?
  
 
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