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76 There can be no conflict between sanity and insanity. Only one is true, and therefore only one is real. The ego tries to persuade you that it is up to you to decide which voice is true, but the Holy Spirit teaches you that truth was created by God, and your decision cannot change it. As you begin to realize the quiet power of the Holy Spirit's Voice and its perfect consistency, it must dawn on your minds that you are trying to undo a decision which was made irrevocably for you. That is why we suggested before that there was help in reminding yourselves to allow the Holy Spirit to decide for God for you.
ACIM OE TEXT
CH 6 ATTACK AND FEAR
Workbook for Students
Part I
Lesson 71
Only God's plan for
salvation will work.
1 You may not realize that the ego has set up a plan for salvation in opposition to God's. It is this plan in which you believe. Since it is the opposite of God's, you also believe that to accept God's plan in place of the ego's is to be damned. This sounds preposterous, of course. Yet after we have considered just what the ego's plan is, perhaps you will realize that, however preposterous it may be, you do believe it.

2 The ego's plan for salvation centers around holding grievances. It maintains that if someone else spoke or acted differently, if some external circumstance or event were changed, you would be saved. Thus the source of salvation is constantly perceived as outside yourself.

3 Each grievance you hold is a declaration and an assertion in which you believe that says, "If this were different, I would be saved." The change of mind that is necessary for salvation is thus demanded of everyone and everything except yourself.

4 The role assigned to your own mind in this plan, then, is simply to determine what other than itself must change if you are to be saved. According to this insane plan, any perceived source of salvation is acceptable, provided that it will not work. This ensures that the fruitless search will continue, for the illusion persists that, although this hope has always failed, there are still grounds for hope in other places and in other things. Another person will yet serve better; another situation will yet offer success.

5 Such is the ego's plan for your salvation. Surely you can see how it is in strict accord with the ego's basic doctrine, "Seek but do not find." For what could more surely guarantee that you will not find salvation than to channelize all your efforts in searching for it where it is not?

6 God's plan for salvation works simply because, by following His direction, you seek for salvation where it is. But if you are to succeed, as God promises you will, you must be willing to seek there only. Otherwise your purpose is divided, and you will attempt to follow two plans for salvation which are diametrically opposed in all ways. The result can only bring confusion, misery, and a deep sense of failure and despair.

7 How can you escape all this? Very simply. The idea for today is the answer. Only God's plan for salvation will work. There can be no real conflict about this, because there is no possible alternative to God's plan that will save you. His is the only plan that is certain in its outcome. His is the only plan that must succeed.

8 Let us practice recognizing this certainty today. And let us rejoice that there is an answer to what seems to be a conflict with no resolution possible. All things are possible to God. Salvation must be yours because of His plan, which cannot fail.

9 Begin the two longer practice periods for today by thinking about today's idea and realizing that it contains two parts, each making equal contribution to the whole. God's plan for your salvation will work, and other plans will not. Do not allow yourself to become depressed or angry at the second part; it is inherent in the first. And in the first is your full release from all your own insane attempts and mad proposals to free yourself. They have led to depression and anger. But God's plan will succeed. It will lead to release and joy.

10 Remembering this, let us devote the remainder of the extended practice p eriods to asking God to reveal His plan to us. Ask Him very specifically:

11 What would You have me do?
Where would You have me go?
What would You have me say, and to whom?

12 Give Him full charge of the rest of the practice period, and let Him tell you what needs to be done by you in His plan for your salvation. He will answer you in proportion to your willingness to hear His Voice. Refuse not to hear. The very fact that you are doing the exercises proves that you have some willingness to listen. This is enough to establish your claim to God's answer.

13 In the shorter practice periods tell yourself often that God's plan for salvation, and only His, will work. Be alert to all temptation to hold grievances today, and respond to them with this form of today's idea:

14 Holding grievances is the opposite of God's plan for Salvation. And only His plan will work.

15 Try to remember the idea for today some six or seven times an hour. There could be no better way to spend a half-minute or less than to remember the Source of your salvation, and to see It where It is.
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Lesson ARCHIVE
Course in Miracles
Original Edition
TEXT
Chapter 6
Attack and Fear

V.b. The Have Peace,
Teach Peace To Learn It
par 70-81
70 All the separated ones have a basic fear of retaliation and abandonment. This is because they believe in attack and rejection, so this is what they perceive and teach and learn. These insane concepts are clearly the result of their own dissociation and projection. What you teach you are, but it is quite apparent that you can teach wrongly and therefore teach yourselves wrong. Many thought that I was attacking them, even though it was quite apparent that I was not. An insane learner learns strange lessons.

71 What you must understand is that when you do not share a thought system, you are weakening it. Those who believe in it therefore perceive this as an attack on them. This is because everyone identifies himself with his thought system, and every thought system centers on what you believe you are. If the center of the thought system is true, only truth extends from it. But if a lie is at its center, only deception proceeds from it. All good teachers realize that only fundamental change will last, but they do not begin at that level. Strengthening motivation for change is their first and foremost goal. It is also their last and final one.

72 Increasing motivation for change in the learner is all that a teacher need do to guarantee change. This is because a change in motivation is a change of mind, and this will inevitably produce fundamental change because the mind is fundamental. The first step in the reversal or undoing process, then, is the undoing of the getting concept. Accordingly, the Holy Spirit's first lesson was "to have, give all to all." We said that this is apt to increase conflict temporarily, and we can clarify this still further now.

73 At this point, the equality of "having" and "being" is not yet perceived. Until it is, "having" appears to be the opposite of "being." Therefore, the first lesson seems to contain a contradiction since it is being learned by a conflicted mind. This means conflicting motivation, and so the lesson cannot be learned consistently as yet. Further, the mind of the learner projects its own split, and thus does not perceive consistent minds in others, making him suspicious of their motivation. This is the real reason why in many respects the first lesson is the hardest to learn. Still strongly aware of the ego in himself and responding primarily to the ego in others, he is being taught to react to both as if what he does believe is not true.

74 Upside-down as always, the ego perceives the first lesson as insane. In fact this is its only alternative here since the other one, which would be much less acceptable to it, would obviously be that it is insane. The ego's judgment, then, is predetermined by what it is, though no more so than is any other product of thought. The fundamental change will still occur with the change of mind in the thinker. Meanwhile, the increasing clarity of the Holy Spirit's Voice makes it impossible for the learner not to listen. For a time, then, he is receiving conflicting messages and accepting both. This is the classic "double bind" in communication.

75 The way out of conflict between two opposing thought systems is clearly to choose one and relinquish the other. If you identify with your thought system, and you cannot escape this, and if you accept two thought systems which are in complete disagreement, peace of mind is impossible. If you teach both, which you will surely do as long as you accept both, you are teaching conflict and learning it. Yet you do want peace, or you would not have called upon the Voice for Peace to help you. His lesson is not insane; the conflict is.

76 There can be no conflict between sanity and insanity. Only one is true, and therefore only one is real. The ego tries to persuade you that it is up to you to decide which voice is true, but the Holy Spirit teaches you that truth was created by God, and your decision cannot change it. As you begin to realize the quiet power of the Holy Spirit's Voice and its perfect consistency, it must dawn on your minds that you are trying to undo a decision which was made irrevocably for you. That is why we suggested before that there was help in reminding yourselves to allow the Holy Spirit to decide for God for you.

77 You are not asked to make insane decisions, although you are free to think you are. It must, however, be insane to believe that it is up to you to decide what God's creations are. The Holy Spirit perceives the conflict exactly as it is. Therefore, His second lesson is:

78 To have peace, teach peace to learn it.

79 This is still a preliminary step since having and being are still not equated. It is, however, more advanced than the first step, which is really only a thought reversal. The second step is a positive affirmation of what you want. This, then, is a step in the direction out of conflict since it means that alternatives have been considered and one has been chosen as more desirable.

80 Nevertheless, the evaluation "more desirable" still implies that the desirable has degrees. Therefore, although this step is essential for the ultimate decision, it is clearly not the final one. It is clear at this point that the lack of order of difficulty in miracles has not yet been accepted because nothing is difficult that is wholly desired. To desire wholly is to create, and creating cannot be difficult if God Himself created you as a creator. The second step, then, is still perceptual, although it is a giant step toward the unified perception which parallels God's knowing.

81 As you take this step and hold this direction, you will be pushing toward the center of your thought system where the fundamental change will occur. You are only beginning this step now, but you have started on this way by realizing that only one way is possible. You do not yet realize this consistently, and so your progress is intermittent, but the second step is easier than the first because it follows. The very fact that you have accepted that is a demonstration of your growing awareness that the Holy Spirit will lead you on.
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Sarah's Reflections
Lesson 71
Only God's plan for salvation
will work.
Sarah's Commentary:
 
Manipulating, planning, conniving, and strategizing in order to gain happiness in the world are where we put a lot of energy in an attempt to keep ourselves fulfilled. What plans do you have that you think will bring you happiness? What do you want to be right about? What grievances are you holding, and who needs to change or do something different in order for you to be happy? Our whole focus is on the idea that if someone acted differently or if we got what we wanted, we would be saved. In other words, we would be happy. The source of our salvation is seen to be outside ourselves. If something outside ourselves were different, we think we would be happy. We make demands of everyone when we follow the ego's plan for salvation. We don't want to hear that there is no hope in our plans for happiness. This is not good news to us as long as we identify with the character in the dream. Jesus says that all of us who have come here hold some hope of finding happiness in the idols of the world.

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Love and blessings, Sarah

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Allen Watson's
Workbook Commentaries
Allen joined Robert Perry in forming the Circle of Atonement in 1993 in Sedona, Arizona where Allen led retreats and workshops and authored many books based on “A Course in Miracles.” One of his most popular books is:

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