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76 Like to the sun and ocean your Self continues, unmindful that this tiny part regards itself as you. It is not missing; it could not exist if it were separate, nor would the whole be whole without it. It is not a separate kingdom, ruled by an idea of separation from the rest. Nor does a fence surround it, preventing it from joining with the rest and keeping it apart from its Creator. This little aspect is no different from the whole, being continuous with it and at one with it. It leads no separate life because its life is the oneness in which its being was created.
"The Purpose of the Body"
Workbook for Students
Part I ~ Review VI
Introduction
1 For this review, we take but one idea each day and practice it as often as is possible. Besides the time you give morning and evening, which should not be less than 15 minutes, and the hourly remembrances you make throughout the day, use the idea as often as you can between them. Each of these ideas alone would be sufficient for salvation, if it were learned truly. Each would be enough to give release to you and to the world from every form of bondage and invite the memory of God to come again.

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Workbook for Students
Review VI ~ Lesson 208
I am not a body. I am free.
For I am still as God created me.

[188] The peace of God is shining in me now.

1 I will be still and let the earth be still along with me. And in that stillness, we will find the peace of God. It is within my heart, which witnesses to God Himself.

I am not a body. I am free.
For I am still as God created me.

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Lesson ARCHIVE
Course in Miracles
Original Edition
Text
Chapter 18
 The Dream and the Reality

IX. The Purpose of the Body
 par 71-83
[PAUSED FOR WEEKEND]
71 It is only the awareness of the body that makes love seem limited. For the body is a limit on love. The belief in limited love was its origin, and it was made to limit the unlimited. Think not that this is merely allegorical, for it was made to limit you. Can you who see yourselves within a body know yourself as an idea? Everything you recognize you identify with externals, something outside itself. You cannot even think of God without a body or some form you think you recognize.

72 The body cannot know. And while you limit your awareness to its tiny senses, you will not see the grandeur which surrounds you. God cannot come into a body, nor can you join Him there. Limits on love will always seem to shut Him out and to keep you apart from Him. The body is a tiny fence around a little part of a glorious and complete idea. It draws a circle, infinitely small, around a very little segment of Heaven splintered from the whole, proclaiming that within it is your kingdom, where God can enter not.

73 Within this kingdom the ego rules, and cruelly. And to defend this little speck of dust, it bids you fight against the universe. This fragment of your mind is such a tiny part of it that, could you but appreciate the whole, you would see instantly that it is like the smallest sunbeam to the sun or like the faintest ripple on the surface of the ocean. In its amazing arrogance, this tiny sunbeam has decided it is the sun; this almost imperceptible ripple hails itself as the ocean. Think how alone and frightened is this little thought, this infinitesimal illusion, holding itself apart against the universe. The sun becomes the sunbeam's "enemy" which would devour it, and the ocean terrifies the little ripple and wants to swallow it.

74 Yet neither sun nor ocean is even aware of all this strange and meaningless activity. They merely continue, unaware that they are feared and hated by a tiny segment of themselves. Even that segment is not lost to them, for it could not survive apart from them. And what it thinks it is in no way changes its total dependence on them for its being. Its whole existence still remains in them. Without the sun the sunbeam would be gone; the ripple without the ocean is inconceivable.

75 Such is the strange position in which those in a world inhabited by bodies seem to be. Each body seems to house a separate mind, a disconnected thought living alone and in no way joined to the Thought by which it was created. Each tiny fragment seems to be self-contained, needing each other for some things but by no means totally dependent on their one Creator for everything and needing the whole to give them any meaning, for by themselves they do mean nothing. Nor have they any life apart and by themselves.

76 Like to the sun and ocean your Self continues, unmindful that this tiny part regards itself as you. It is not missing; it could not exist if it were separate, nor would the whole be whole without it. It is not a separate kingdom, ruled by an idea of separation from the rest. Nor does a fence surround it, preventing it from joining with the rest and keeping it apart from its Creator. This little aspect is no different from the whole, being continuous with it and at one with it. It leads no separate life because its life is the oneness in which its being was created.

77 Do not accept this little fenced-off aspect as yourself. The sun and ocean are as nothing beside what you are. The sunbeam sparkles only in the sunlight, and the ripple dances as it rests upon the ocean. Yet in neither sun nor ocean is the power that rests in you. Would you remain within your tiny kingdom, a sorry king, a bitter ruler of all he surveys who looks on nothing, yet who would still die to defend it? This little self is not your kingdom. Arched high above it and surrounding it with love is the glorious whole, which offers all its happiness and deep content to every part. The little aspect which you think you set apart is no exception.

78 Love knows no bodies and reaches to everything created like itself. Its total lack of limit is its meaning. It is completely impartial in its giving, encompassing only to preserve and keep complete what it would give. In your tiny kingdom, you have so little! Should it not, then, be there that you would call on love to enter? Look at the desert, dry and unproductive, scorched and joyless, which makes up your little kingdom. And realize the life and joy which love would bring to it from where it comes and where it would return with you.

79 The Thought of God surrounds your little kingdom, waiting at the barrier you built to come inside and shine upon the barren ground. See how life springs up everywhere! The desert becomes a garden, green and deep and quiet, offering rest to those who lost their way and wander in the dust. Give them a place of refuge, prepared by love for them where once a desert was. And everyone you welcome will bring love with him from Heaven for you. They enter one by one into this holy place, but they will not depart as they had come, alone. The love they brought with them will stay with them, as it will stay with you. And under its beneficence, your little garden will expand and reach out to everyone who thirsts for living water but has grown too weary to go on alone.

80 Go out and find them, for they bring your Self with them. And lead them gently to your quiet garden and receive their blessing there. So will it grow and stretch across the desert, leaving no lonely little kingdoms locked away from love and leaving you inside. And you will recognize yourself and see your little garden gently transformed into the Kingdom of Heaven with all the love of its Creator shining upon it. The holy instant is your invitation to love, to enter into your bleak and joyless kingdom, and to transform it into a garden of peace and welcome.

81 Love's answer is inevitable. It will come because you came without the body and interposed no barriers which would interfere with its glad coming. In the holy instant, you ask of love only what it offers everyone, neither less nor more. Asking for everything, you will receive it. And your shining Self will lift the tiny aspect which you tried to hide from Heaven straight into Heaven. No part of love calls on the whole in vain. No Son of God remains outside His Fatherhood.

82 Be sure of this—love has entered your special relationship and entered fully at your weak request. You do not recognize that love has come because you have not yet let go of all the barriers you hold against each other. And you will not be able to give love welcome separately. You could no more know God alone than He knows you without your brother. But together you could no more be unaware of love than love could know you not or fail to recognize itself in you.

83 You have reached the end of an ancient journey, not realizing yet that it is over. You are still worn and tired and the desert's dust still seems to cloud your eyes and keep you sightless. Yet He Whom you welcomed has come to you and would welcome you. He has waited long to give you this. Receive it now of Him, for He would have you know Him. Only a little wall of dust still stands between you. Blow on it lightly and with happy laughter, and it will fall away. And walk into the garden love has prepared for both of you.

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Sarah's Reflections
Review VI ~ Lesson 208

I am not a body. I am free.
For I am still as God created me.

[188] The peace of God
is shining in me now.
Sarah's Commentary:
 
The focus now is on entering the holy instant. It is to experience moments of stillness and a withdrawal from the world into the quiet center of the mind. Only in the holy instant do we have the experience of deep peace. What is needed to come to this experience is for us to look at our blocks to love reflected in all our judgments and attitudes toward others. In releasing them, we experience the reflection of Heaven. It is a feeling of deep peace and a sense of being at home. It requires a willingness to take responsibility for our thoughts and a recognition that everything we perceive starts within our own minds.
 
The world is a projection of the guilt in our wrong minds. When the blocks to love are healed, the love in us extends from our heart to everyone. "It pauses to caress each living thing, and leaves a blessing with it that remains forever and forever. What it gives must be eternal. It removes all thoughts of the ephemeral and valueless. It brings renewal to all tired hearts, and lights all vision as it passes by. All of its gifts are given everyone, and everyone unites in giving thanks to you who give, and you who have received." (W.188.3.2-6) Now the gifts we give are returned to us ". . . beyond all measure." (W.188.4.2)
 
How we know whether we have chosen the ego or the Holy Spirit comes from what we perceive. Jesus says, "It is not difficult to look within, for there all vision starts." (W.188.2.5) Yet the ego tells us not to look within. It says that all is dark there, and God will destroy us because of the sin in us. So, we are afraid to go there. "Loudly the ego tells you not to look inward, for if you do your eyes will light on sin, and God will strike you blind. This you believe, and so you do not look." (T.21.IV.2.3-4) (ACIM OE T.21.V.42) As a result of this belief that we hold, we feel safer in our distractions. Yet when we are willing to look at these false beliefs, we can go beyond them to the light. That light is already in us, blocked by our dark thoughts. Willingness is required to go beyond our defenses. We set up defenses against the love we are because of our fear of God. When we are willing to look past our defenses with honesty and courage, it is the beginning of vision.
 
The world is an outward picture of our inward condition. Thus, we can clearly see what we have aligned with, whether it is with the dark thoughts of the ego or with the love of the Holy Spirit. Both the problem and the solution are in our own minds. This is where all healing takes place. What we see with our eyes and take in with our ears and other senses is designed to deceive us that there is actually a world out there, acting on us. But the world is in our own minds. Everything we see starts and ends there. That is what is beautiful about this process because all power is in us. "The power of decision is your one remaining freedom as a prisoner of this world." (T.12.VII.9.1) (ACIM OE T.11.VIII.70) Nothing outside of us can take our peace and joy. If we do not feel the peace and joy that are ours, it is because we have chosen the ego thought system of judgment, condemnation, and specialness.
 
We cannot release what we refuse to acknowledge in ourselves. Our beliefs, opinions, concepts, values, and thoughts are what we need to acknowledge as keeping us from love, as we are tempted to deny or project our guilt onto others. It is important to resist this temptation if we are to heal what stands in the way of the love we are. "Enlightenment is but a recognition, not a change at all." (W.188.1.4) It is not light we need to seek because we already have it. To find this light, simply look within. It is not about struggling with the ego or struggling against our obsessive thoughts. To do so is to give them reality. It is not even about trying "hard" but only about surrendering. It is to give up our way and follow His way.
 
"Why wait for Heaven? Those who seek the light are merely covering their eyes. The light is in them now." (W.188.1.1-3) To seek for a future state of enlightenment is what many of us try to do, yet this is precisely what keeps it at bay. We are in the past or future and not accepting the present moment. The moment of the holy instant, where there is an authentic knowing that floods our minds, is the moment of knowing that it is all here now. Chasing the goal of enlightenment is just another ego ploy to "seek and do not find." (T.12.V.7.1) (ACIM OE T.11.VI.49)
 
We need to give up control, as everything has already been determined. The end is certain, so what do we do now? The answer is to choose love in every moment. In every circumstance that is in front of us, we can stay aware of our thoughts and choose how to respond, whether from the ego or from the Spirit. Let your life be guided by Love in each moment. No matter what you are facing, keep asking how Love would have you respond to the situation. The Answer is within you. It requires tuning into the Voice of the Holy Spirit. The ego will tend to speak first, but it is never the truth. When we turn to the Holy Spirit, He will always offer His guidance, which is in direct opposition to the ego.
 
If the peace of God is shining in us now, there is nowhere to go to find it and nothing to seek for. It is indeed humorous to seek for the light while covering our eyes, refusing to see it is here now. "Those who seek the light are merely covering their eyes." (W.188.1.2) In other words, Jesus says, although we seek it, there is also a part of us keeping it from our awareness. How do we do that? We defend against it by holding it apart from us, believing we will find it some day in the future. "Why wait to find it in the future, or believe it has been lost already, or was never there?" (W.188.2.2) Jesus calls these arguments "ridiculous." (W.188.2.3) "The light came with you from your native home, and stayed with you because it is your own." (W.188.1.6) There is no reason to delay our peace and joy. There is no reason to indulge in the belief that we have to atone for our sins and clean up our act in order to know Heaven. There is no need to suffer any longer. We think it is hard to find and that we need to struggle with our ego. We think that this is a difficult process, but Jesus keeps assuring us that to struggle with the ego is to make it real. Recognition of the light in us is all that is needed. The light is there now. This light cannot be lost. We do not need to try hard to find where it is. We have just forgotten who we are. It is always present, yet we deny its presence.
 
Everything that seems to happen in this illusion can contribute to our journey if given over to the Holy Spirit. Every event, every circumstance, every mistake, and every situation can be seen as an opportunity to release our self-condemnation, self-attacks, and judgments that we project onto the world. None of these things are a reason for guilt. No mistake should be used for crucifying ourselves or others. It is all there for our learning. It is just another opportunity to release our own self-condemnation that we project onto others. "In every difficulty, all distress, and each perplexity Christ calls to you and gently says, 'My brother, choose again'." (T.31.VIII.3.2) (ACIM OE T.31.VIII.87)
 
Jesus is not denying that we experience difficulty, distress, or perplexity in our lives. We all have a lot of stuff that occupies our thoughts, but all these challenges hamper our spiritual growth if we deny and resist them. As Ken Wapnick writes, in The Healing Power of Kindness, pp.38-39: "Rather than feel guilty, angry or depressed about a problem--physical or psychological--we need to accept it as a classroom, telling ourselves this is the form in which we will learn what we need to learn: whatever the distress, it is our choosing. This is not because we are neurotic, psychotic or bad, but because we want to prove we are who we are not; that the separated, sinful, and guilty self is real, and our glorious Self an illusion."
 
When you feel discouraged on this journey, do not fight yourself. Nothing is wrong. Nothing is out of place. I recently heard Adyashanti say that the world is "benevolently ruthless." In other words, we all get exactly what we need for our awakening. It can be grace, even though it may look like ruthless grace. Whatever you may think that you have done wrong and whatever you may feel frustrated with or sad about, do not resist it or deny it. It is in the opposition of it that we suffer. Allow yourself to accept wherever you are. Allow yourself to be defeated or discouraged. Experience the feeling, instead of trying to manage or control it. It is about absolute acceptance. The truth is that we are perfect, innocent, complete, and always in the Presence of God's Love, but our minds convince us otherwise. When we accept whatever the situation is in front of us and fully accept what we are feeling, we can immediately turn to the Holy Spirit and open our minds to His interpretation.
 
As long as we hold onto our judgments and grievances and as long as we are unwilling to take responsibility for them, we cannot know the peace of God that is shining in us now. That is why burying, hiding, or avoiding taking responsibility for our dark thoughts keeps them from being purified and washed clean by the Holy Spirit. Jesus says, "We have betrayed them, ordering that they depart from us. But now we call them back, and wash them clean of strange desires and disordered wishes. We restore to them the holiness of their inheritance." (W.188.9.5-7) Actually, we do not do that because the ego will never undertake to undo itself. The Holy Spirit does it when we turn our strange desires and disordered wishes over to Him by putting them on the inner altar. This is the miracle. "We will forgive them all, absolving all the world from what we thought it did to us." (W.188.10.2) That is what forgiveness does; it washes away what no longer serves us.
 
"We practice coming nearer to the light in us today. We take our wandering thoughts, and gently bring them back to where they fall in line with all the thoughts we share with God. We will not let them [ our wandering thoughts] stray. We let the light within our minds direct them to come home." (W.188.9.1-4) Today, we practice watching our thoughts by calling them to our attention so they can be washed clean by the Holy Spirit. Thus, they leave room for only God's Thoughts. In the light that has never left us, we find God's peace.
 
Rather than blaming the world, "Now we choose that it be innocent, devoid of sin and open to salvation." (W.188.10.4) We lay our blessing on it today instead of cursing and blaming it for the conditions we have chosen for ourselves. We say, " The peace of God is shining in me now. Let all things shine upon me in that peace, and let me bless them with the light in me. " (W.188.10.6-7)
 
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Love and blessings, Sarah
 
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Allen Watson's
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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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