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" 3 The ego's voice is an hallucination. You cannot expect it to say, "I am not real." Hallucinations are inaccurate perceptions of reality. Yet you are not asked to dispel them alone. You are merely asked to evaluate them in terms of their results to you. If you do not want them on the basis of loss of peace, they will be removed from your mind for you. "

Workbook for Students
Review II
1 We are now ready for another review. We will begin where our last review left off and cover two ideas each day. The earlier part of each day will be devoted to one of these ideas, and the latter part of the day to the other. We will have one longer exercise period and frequent shorter ones in which we practice each of them.

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Workbook for Students
Lesson 89
1 These are our review ideas for today:

[77] I am entitled to miracles.

2 I am entitled to miracles because I am under no laws but God's. His laws release me from all grievances and replace them with miracles. And I would accept the miracles in place of the grievances, which are but illusions that hide the miracles beyond. Now I would accept only what the laws of God entitle me to have that I may use it on behalf of the function He has given me.

3 You might use these suggestions for specific applications of this idea:

4 Behind this is a miracle to which I am entitled. Let me not hold a grievance against you [name], but offer you the miracle that belongs to you instead. Seen truly, this offers me a miracle.

[78] Let miracles replace all grievances.

5 By this idea do I unite my will with the Holy Spirit's and perceive them as one. By this idea do I accept my release from hell. By this idea do I express my willingness to have all my illusions be replaced with truth according to God's plan for my salvation. I would make no exceptions and no substitutes. I want all of Heaven and only Heaven, as God wills me to have.

6 Useful specific forms for applying this idea would be:

7 I would not hold this grievance apart from my salvation. Let our grievances be replaced by miracles, [name]. Beyond this is the miracle by which all my grievances are replaced.

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Course in Miracles
Original Edition
Chapter 8
 The Journey Back

I. Introduction
 par 1-3
1 You are hampered in your progress by your demands to know what you do not know. This is actually a way of holding on to deprivation. You cannot reasonably object to following instructions in a course for knowing on the grounds that you do not know. The need for the course is implicit in your objection. Knowledge is not the motivation for learning this course. Peace is. As the prerequisite for knowledge, peace must be learned. This is only because those who are in conflict are not peaceful, and peace is the condition of knowledge because it is the condition of the Kingdom.

2 Knowledge will be restored when you meet its conditions. This is not a bargain made by God, Who makes no bargains. It is merely the result of your misuse of His laws on behalf of a will that is not His. Knowledge is His Will. If you are opposing His Will, how can you have knowledge? I have told you what knowledge offers you, but it is clear that you do not regard this as wholly desirable. If you did, you would hardly be willing to throw it away so readily when the ego asks for your allegiance. The distraction of the ego seems to interfere with your learning, but the ego has no power to distract you unless you give it the power.

3 The ego's voice is an hallucination. You cannot expect it to say, "I am not real." Hallucinations are inaccurate perceptions of reality. Yet you are not asked to dispel them alone. You are merely asked to evaluate them in terms of their results to you. If you do not want them on the basis of loss of peace, they will be removed from your mind for you. Every response to the ego is a call to war, and war does deprive you of peace. Yet in this war there is no opponent. This is the reinterpretation of reality which you must make to secure peace, and the only one you need ever make.

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Course in Miracles
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Chapter 8
 The Journey Back

II. The Direction of the Curriculum
 par 4-7
4 Those whom you perceive as opponents are part of your peace, which you are giving up by attacking them. How can you have what you give up? You share to have, but you do not give it up yourself. When you give up peace, you are excluding yourself from it. This is a condition which is so alien to the Kingdom that you cannot understand the state which prevails within it. Your past learning must have taught you the wrong things simply because it has not made you happy. On this basis alone, its value should be questioned.

5 If learning aims at change, and that is always its purpose, are you satisfied with the changes your learning has brought you? Dissatisfaction with learning outcomes must be a sign of learning failure, since it means that you did not get what you want. The curriculum of the Atonement is the opposite of the curriculum you have established for yourselves, but so is its outcome. If the outcome of yours has made you unhappy and if you want a different one, a change in the curriculum is obviously necessary.

6 The first change that must be introduced is a change in direction. A meaningful curriculum cannot be inconsistent. If it is planned by two teachers, each believing in diametrically opposed ideas, it cannot be integrated. If it is carried out by these two teachers simultaneously, each one merely interferes with the other. This leads to fluctuation, but not to change. The volatile have no direction. They cannot choose one because they cannot relinquish the other, even if the other does not exist. Their conflicted curriculum teaches them all directions exist and gives them no rationale for choice.

7 The total senselessness of such a curriculum must be fully recognized before a real change in direction becomes possible. You cannot learn simultaneously from two teachers who are in total disagreement about everything. Their joint curriculum presents an impossible learning task. They are teaching you entirely different things in entirely different ways, which might be possible except for the crucial fact that both are teaching you about yourself. Your reality is unaffected by both, but if you listen to both, your mind will be split about what your reality is.

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Course in Miracles
Original Edition
Chapter 8
 The Journey Back

III. The Rationale for Choice
 par 8-15
8 There is a rationale for choice. Only one Teacher knows what your reality is. If learning that is the purpose of the curriculum, you must learn it of Him. The ego does not know what it is trying to teach. It is trying to teach you what you are without knowing it. The ego is expert only in confusion. It does not understand anything else. As a teacher, then, it is totally confused and totally confusing. Even if you could disregard the Holy Spirit entirely, which is quite impossible, you could learn nothing from the ego because the ego knows nothing.

9 Is there any possible reason for choosing a teacher such as this? Does the total disregard of anything it teaches make anything but sense? Is this the teacher to whom a Son of God should turn to find himself? The ego has never given you a sensible answer to anything. Simply on the grounds of your own experience with the ego's teaching, should not this alone disqualify it as your future teacher? Yet the ego has done more harm to your learning than this alone. Learning is joyful if it leads you along your natural path and facilitates the development of what you have. When you are taught against your nature, however, you will lose by your learning because your learning will imprison you. Your will is in your nature and therefore cannot go against it.

10 The ego cannot teach you anything as long as your will is free because you will not listen to it. It is not your will to be imprisoned because your will is free. That is why the ego is the denial of free will. It is never God who coerces you because He shares His Will with you. His Voice teaches only His Will, but that is not the Holy Spirit's lesson because that is what you are. The lesson is that your will and God's cannot be out of accord because they are one. This is the undoing of everything the ego tries to teach. It is not, then, only the direction of the curriculum which must be unconflicted, but also the content.

11 The ego wants to teach you that you want to oppose God's Will. This unnatural lesson cannot be learned, but the attempt to learn it is a violation of your own freedom and makes you afraid of your will because it is free. The Holy Spirit opposes any imprisoning of the will of a Son of God, knowing that the will of the Son is the Father's. The Holy Spirit leads you steadily along the path of freedom, teaching you how to disregard or look beyond everything that would hold you back.

12 We said before that the Holy Spirit teaches you the difference between pain and joy. That is the same as saying that He teaches you the difference between imprisonment and freedom. You cannot make this distinction without Him. That is because you have taught yourself that imprisonment is freedom. Believing them to be the same, how can you tell them apart? Can you ask the part of your mind that taught you to believe they are the same to teach you the difference between them? 

13 The Holy Spirit's teaching takes only one direction and has only one goal. His direction is freedom, and His goal is God. Yet He cannot conceive of God without you because it is not God's Will to be without you. When you have learned that your will is God's, you could no more will to be without Him than He could will to be without you. This is freedom and this is joy. Deny yourself this and you are denying God His Kingdom because He created you for this. When we said, "All power and glory are yours because the Kingdom is His," this is what we meant. 

14 The Will of God is without limit, and all power and glory lie within it. It is boundless in strength and in love and in peace. It has no boundaries because its extension is unlimited, and it encompasses all things because it created all things. By creating all things, it made them part of itself. You are the Will of God because this is how you were created. Because your Creator creates only like Himself, you are like Him. You are part of Him Who is all power and glory and are therefore as unlimited as He is.

15 To what else except all power and glory can the Holy Spirit appeal to restore God's Kingdom? His appeal, then, is merely to what the Kingdom is and for its own acknowledgment of what it is. When you acknowledge this, you bring the acknowledgment automatically to everyone because you have acknowledged everyone. By your recognition you awaken theirs, and through theirs yours is extended. Awakening runs easily and gladly through the Kingdom in answer to the Call of God. This is the natural response of every Son of God to the Voice of his Creator because it is the Voice for his creations and for his own extension.

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Sarah's Reflections
Lesson 89 ~ Review II
[Review Lessons 77-78]
The Lesson for the morning, "I am entitled to miracles , " (W.89.1.1) affirms our entitlement to be released from all grievances because of who we are as a Son of God. It dismisses our belief that we deserve to be punished. Regardless of how we see ourselves, we can't change the truth of who we are, and that is certainly a relief. All that can happen is to become unaware of the truth of what we are.
The Atonement Principle is our assurance that the separation never happened, although we experience it as if it had. However, God's law is unchangeable. We remain as we were created. If this is the case, the things I think I have said and done that seemed to have an effect on me have not actually happened. I cannot hurt and cannot be hurt. This is the case because the world is an illusion.
 Everything I have held against anyone is just what I secretly hold against myself in order to keep the separation going. What we do is project our unhealed thoughts and self-attacks that are in our minds. Projection makes perception. It is an outside picture of our inward condition. Grievances draw a veil across the face of Christ, and they hide the miracles. We hold onto grievances because we are ultimately afraid of connecting to the love in our minds. In other words, we have a deep fear of intimacy, so we keep a distance from each other, and this is the same distance we have with God. The fear is not as much of the love, as it is of the god the ego has made, for it is a god of retribution whose punishment we fear.
Grievances come in many forms, and they show up: when our expectations are not met, when we become disappointed in people, when difficult events show up in our lives, when we try to alter things we think we want and need, and when our focus is on seeking pleasure. The stories we tell of our betrayals, disappointments, and difficulties constitute our lives. Our grievances are all about complaints, regrets, frustrations, disappointments, and losses. Why do we hold onto them? Isn't it because we feel they define us? Isn’t there something we get to be right about? Isn’t there some kind of payoff we get from holding onto our perspectives? Of course, the biggest payoff is that we keep our separated self. "Where the attraction of guilt holds sway, peace is not wanted." (T.19.IV.B.1.2) (ACIM OE T.19.V.b.59)
We are invested in the illusion and actually afraid of love, and that is precisely why we choose to hold onto our stories. Grievances don't just come to us. We choose them and hold onto them because we want others to be responsible for how we feel. We don't want the responsibility for seemingly leaving God. We want to make others responsible for our misery. We are only miserable because of our decision to hold onto our separate, unique selves, and we do that by holding onto our suffering. We still value what the world has to offer, even if that offering is nothing but more suffering and misery disguised as hope that the world has something to offer us that we think we still want.
Actually, at the bottom of our existence in this illusory world is pure, unequivocal goodness, innocence, and joy. To discover this truth is a blessing of grace. It is grace because there is nothing we have to do to achieve wisdom, miracles, and ultimately the truth about ourselves. Grace is a direct experience of divine presence. It is always available to us but requires surrender. We need to relax our control over our lives. We cannot add anything to the truth, improve on the light of God, nor do we need to improve ourselves. We just need to undo the blocks to love. In order to recognize these eternal moments of grace where the miracle shines through, we can't be caught up in our issues. The miracle is available to us now. Enlightenment is not a goal we need to reach. As Adyashanti says, it is not some kind of finish line we need to cross in order to accomplish something.
The simple moment of letting a grievance be replaced by the miracle is the moment of awakening to the wisdom of our authentic Self. It is not complicated to observe our minds on a daily basis so that we can bring the judgments and grievances to the Holy Spirit to be released. We can't heal what we don't acknowledge in ourselves, but when we look at our guilt through the loving, gentle eyes of Jesus, we can smile at its unreality. Yet we must want the peace more than we want to be right about our perceptions.
If we really, truly, and completely believed that any grievance we held kept us from miracles, would we hold them regardless of the perceived attack on us by others? Think of the power unleashed whenever we forgive. The power of God brings us miracles. We are worthy and thus deserving of miracles. Attack makes us feel like we are unworthy of them, that we don't deserve God's love, and that we are not entitled to miracles. Removing ourselves from God's love by erecting a wall of grievances that block His love from our awareness simply hurts us. Why would we want to continue to do that to ourselves?
Very often I find myself stubbornly hanging onto my point of view, my self-righteous position, and my judgments of others. What does this do? It puts me in hell. It accentuates my guilt and fear. It keeps me separate and in fear of punishment. I am actively choosing to be in a state of darkness rather than opening up to God's love, which is the current that turns on our light so it can be extended to everyone. We have a function given to us in this world, which is to allow God's love to shine through us as we extend it and offer miracles. The way to experience this is by forgiving what stands in the way.
Our grievances are the basis for our stories and our dramas, which keep us from knowing our reality. We can let these stories be dissolved in God's healing love. When we hold expectations of how others must be, we are judging them for not living up to our expectations. Now we can turn to the Holy Spirit and ask Him to look at the grievance with us and give us His interpretation of how to see the situation. When we are willing to release our justifications for how we feel and recognize that holding grievances will not make us happy, we can know the love and peace that is our inheritance. Do I want to be right about the way I see this situation, or am I willing to accept His help so I can be happy?
Now, instead of judging and attacking, we release our judgments by bringing them to light. We are helped by Jesus/Holy Spirit to see "others" as part of our One Self. When we are willing to overlook their errors, we see that they are pure light and innocence, just as we are. We embrace them in the truth of who they are, no different from ourselves. We express deep gratitude for our brothers and the gifts they bring. That is how grievances are replaced by miracles.
If we remembered this in every moment, we would experience peace; but our peace is not consistent yet, which is why we are in this classroom. Our saviors are everywhere to help us see what is in our own minds where healing is needed. What is required is our willingness and our desire to take responsibility for what is in our wrong minds that we are projecting onto others. We must be willing to admit that what we see is incorrect and only the Holy Spirit's interpretation, not ours, is correct. Insisting that we are right has not brought us peace and joy. Now we must become willing to see that our will is the same as God's Will "and perceive them as one." (W.89.3.2) This is our "release from hell." (W.89.3.3) This is enacted in the world when we see our interests the same as our brothers’. As we join with our brothers, it is a reflection of our One Will that is the same as God's. Our release from hell is through our relationships with our brothers.
Today, we are asked to take up our function as channels for miracles. Bring to mind people in your life you have grievances against. Say to them in your mind, " Let our grievances be replaced by miracles, [name]. " (W.89.4.3) This is a statement of our willingness to acknowledge that how we are seeing a brother is wrong. Bring a difficult situation to mind where you are experiencing struggles in your life, something that feels ugly or hopeless, and say, " Behind this is a miracle to which I am entitled. " (W.89.2.2) Miraculous transformation is possible in any situation.
Be willing to make no exceptions, and hold onto nothing that is a substitute for the eternal. Know that it is all available to you as you release your grievances. "I want all of Heaven and only Heaven, as God wills me to have." (W.89.3.6) Make this Lesson a personal statement by reading it all in the first person. Bring your desire and intent to it. It is about valuing the gift of Heaven more than valuing the wants and demands of our personal self. It is not about doing anything, trying to change ourselves, nor make ourselves more loving. We are not needed to improve on truth, light, and love.
It is through the day-to-day practice of recognizing "By this idea do I accept my release from hell" (W.89.3.3) that we affirm our own ideas are wrong. Our ideas are conditioned by the learning of the world. We must recognize our need for learning. In order to learn, we are basically unlearning all we have previously held as true. When we clearly and firmly embrace what Jesus is telling us, it opens us to the awesome power within. That is what this teaching offers us daily.

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Love and blessings, Sarah

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