|The Message of A Course in Miracles: A Translation of the Text in Plain Language|
Chapter 18: The Passing of the Dream
1. The Substitute Reality
1. To substitute is ďto accept insteadĒ. If you consider what this entails you will perceive how much substituting one illusion for another conflicts with the Goal of Oneness that the Holy Spirit has given to you and that the Holy Spirit wants to accomplish for you. In your relationships with others in the world that you perceive your substituting one person for another is your choosing one of the personal mindís projections as more valuable and ďspecialĒ than another of its projection, making all of its projections real to you. Your relationship with yourself is then fragmented and you see its purpose as split between an isolated ďyouĒ and a world that seems outside of you. Substituting one illusion for another is the strongest defense that the personal mind has for your perception of separation from God.
2. The Holy Spirit never uses substitutes. Where in your identification with a personal self you perceive one person as a replacement for another the Holy Spirit sees them as the same. Your relationships with others are either opportunities for you to project separation or for you to extend Love in your awareness but either way they are all the same and substitution is clearly a process in which you think that they are different. The Holy Spirit wants you to extend Love everywhere and unite with Truth; the personal mind wants you to you project differences everywhere and to be separate from everyone and everything that your mind perceives. Nothing can split your mind, which God joins, and which the Holy Spirit sees as One. But in the fragmented relationships that the personal mind sponsors to destroy Truth, illusions seem to come between your mind and what it perceives.
3. Love, being One, is the one emotion in which it is impossible for you to substitute. But fear involves substitution by definition because it is meant to be Loveís replacement. Fear is both a fragmented and fragmenting emotion that seems to take many forms. Each form of fear seems to require a different form of acting out for your satisfaction. While this makes your behavior unstable, a far more serious effect of fear lies in the fragmented perception that is the source of your behavior. In fear you cannot extend your awareness of Wholeness to your perception of anyone because the personal mind emphasizes the body, especially certain parts that are used as a standard of comparison for acceptance or rejection for acting out fear as special love.
4. You have tried to make only one substitution for Love: Youíve tried to substitute fear for God. This substitution has taken many forms because it was the substitution of illusion for Truth; of fragmentation for Wholeness. Your substitution for God has become so splintered and subdivided and divided again, over and over, that it is now almost impossible for you to perceive that your mind once was One and that it still is. That one error, which seemed to bring Truth to illusion, Infinity to time, and Life to death, was all that you ever made. The whole world that you perceive rests upon it, everything that you perceive in the world reflects it, and every special relationship that you have ever made is part of it.
5. You may be surprised to learn how very different Reality is from what you think of as reality. The magnitude of your one error is so vast and incredible that a world of total unreality had to emerge from it. Nothing else could come of it. Its fragmented aspects are frightening enough to you as you begin to look at them but nothing you see in them begins to show you the enormity of your original error. It seems to have cast you out of Heaven, to have shattered your mind into meaningless bits of disunited perceptions, and to have forced you to make more substitutions.
6. You projected your error outward and the physical world arose to hide it and to be the screen between you and the Truth on which you can project your error. Truth extends inward, where the idea of loss is impossible and only increase is conceivable. It is not strange that a world where everything is backward and upside-down arose from your projection of error; in fact it was inevitable. Truth brought to illusion can only remain within you in Quiet and It takes no part in all of the mad projections by which you make the world that you perceive. Do not call your perception of separation from God ďsinĒ but call it madness because that is what it is. Do not invest it with guilt because guilt implies that it has really happened. Above all, do not be afraid of it.
7. When you seem to see some twisted form of the original substitution of fear for Love arise to frighten you, say to yourself: ďGod is Love, not fearĒ and let it disappear. The Truth will save you because It has not left you so that you can go out into a mad world. Within you is Sanity; outside of you is insanity. You believe that it is the other way around and that Truth is outside of you and that error and guilt are within you. Your little, senseless substitutions for God have no substance. They fuse and merge and separate in shifting and totally meaningless patterns that you do not need to judge at all. To judge individual projections is pointless because their tiny differences in form are not real differences at all. None of them matters and that they have in common and nothing else. They are all the same.
8. Let go of all of your illusions and let them disappear from your sight. Turn to the Stately Calm within where the Living God, Which has never left you, dwells in Holy Stillness. The Holy Spirit will gently guide you as you retrace with It the mad journey that you took outside yourself and It will lead you back to the Truth and Safety within you. The Holy Spirit brings to Truth all of the insane projections and wild substitutions for God that you have placed outside of yourself, reversing the course of your insanity and restoring you to Sanity.
9. In your Holy relationship with another, where the Holy Spirit has taken charge of everything as you have requested, the Holy Spirit has set your course inward to the Truth that you extend to your relationship. In the personal mindís perception of the mad world that seems outside of you nothing can be extended, only substituted. Extension and substitution have nothing in common. From within yourself you extend Perfect Love to your relationship with the other and your relationship is Holy ground on which no substitution can enter and where only the Truth can abide. Here you join your mind with God to replace your perception of a world. The original error of substitution has not entered here and it never will. Here is the Radiant Truth to Which the Holy Spirit has committed your relationship. Let the Holy Spirit bring your relationship here, where you want it to be. Give the Holy Spirit a little faith in your extension of Love to your relationship with the other to help the Holy Spirit show you that no substitute that you have made for Heaven can keep you from It.
10. In you there is no separation and no substitute can keep you from extending Oneness to your relationship with the other. Your Reality is Godís Reality and It has no substitute. Your mind is so firmly united in Truth that only God is There. God loves your mind as One and as God loves you so you are. You do not unite your mind through illusions of a world but in the Thought so Holy and so Perfect that illusions cannot remain. God is with you. In Peace and Gratitude join with your Christ Mind in God and accept God as your most Holy and Perfect Reality.
11. Heaven is restored to your mind through your Holy relationship because in it lays your Christ Mind, Whole and Beautiful, Safe in your Love. Heaven has quietly entered your relationship because all illusions have been gently brought to the Truth in you and Love has shined upon you, blessing your relationship with Truth. Godís Oneness has entered your relationship and how Lovely and Holy is your relationship with the Truth shining on it! Heaven beholds it and rejoices that you have let It come to you. And God is glad that your relationship extends Godís Oneness. Reality within you stands with you and your extension of Love to the other. Heaven looks with Love on what joins in It and with God.
12. God has called to you and you should hear no substitutes for God. Their call is only an echo of your original error, which seemed to shatter Heaven and destroy your Peace. Return with your Christ Mind to Heaven, walking with your Holy relationship out of the world of separation that you perceive and through your Real Perception to the Loveliness and Joy that is only reflected in your Real Perception. Do not further weaken and break apart your mind, which already seems broken and hopeless. Heal it instead and join in making whole what has been ravaged by separation.
13. You have been called to the most Holy Function that there is in the world that you perceive. It is the only one that has no limits and that extends to every seeming broken fragment of your mind with healing and uniting comfort. This is offered to you through your Holy relationship. Accept It here and you will extend It as you have accepted It. The Peace of God is given to you with the Purpose in Which you extend Love to your relationship with another. As you accept the Holiness that you extend to your perception of one other It must be extended to all that your mind perceives.
2. The Basis of the Dream
1. When you dream while you sleep at night the world that arises in your dream seems very real to your mind. But think about what it is: it is not the world that you see before you go to sleep but a distortion of the world that you perceive awake, planned solely around what you prefer. In the dream you are free to make over whatever seemed to attack you while you were awake and to change it into a tribute to the personal self which was outraged by the perceived ďattackĒ. This is your wish because you see yourself as one with the personal mind, which always looks on itself as under attack and highly vulnerable.
2. The dreams that you have while you are asleep are chaotic because they are governed by your conflicting wishes and they have no concern with what is real to you when you are awake. They are the best example you can have of how you can use perception to substitute illusion for truth. You do not take dreams seriously when you awaken because in them what you think is real when you are awake is so outrageously violated. But they are a way of looking at the world and changing it to suit the personal self better. They provide striking examples of both the personal mindís inability to tolerate any reality Ė even the one it makes - and your willingness to join with the personal mind to change whatever reality you perceive on its behalf.
3. You do not find disturbing the differences between what you see while you sleep and what you see while you are awake. You recognize that what you see when you are awake is blotted out in dreams and you are not surprised that the world you left to sleep and dream is still there when you wake up. In dreams you arrange everything: people become what you want them to be and you order what they do. There are no limits on substitutions you make because for a time it seems as though the world is given to you to make of it what you wish. What you do not realize is that you are attacking the world and trying to triumph over it and make it serve you.
4. Dreams are perceptual temper tantrums in which you literally scream, ďI want it like this!Ē And so it seems to be. But the dream cannot escape the mind that is its origin. Anger and fear pervade it and in an instant your illusion of satisfaction is invaded by the illusion of terror. It is terrifying to dream that you can control reality by substituting a world that you prefer. Your attempts to blot out what you think is real are frightening but you are not willing to accept this. So you substitute the fantasy that what you think is real is frightening, instead of seeing that it is what you want to do to reality that is frightening. And so you make guilt real.
5. Sleeping dreams show you that you have the power to make a world as you want it to be and that because you want it you see it. And while you see it you do not doubt that it is real. A dream is a world that is clearly in your mind but that seems outside of your mind while you are dreaming it. You do not respond in the dream as though you made it, nor do you realize that the emotions the dream produces come from you. You think the figures in the dream and what they do make your dream. You do not realize that you are making them act out for you because if you did realize this your guilt would be yours, not theirs, and your illusion of satisfaction would be gone. When you are dreaming the dream seems clear; then you wake up and the dream is gone. What you do not recognize is that the thoughts that caused the dream have not gone away with the dream. Your wish to make a world that is not real remains with you and what you seem to awaken to is but another form of the same illusory world you see in sleeping dreams. All of your time is spent in dreaming. The dreams that you have when you are asleep and when you are awake take different forms and that is all. Their content is the same because they are your protest against Reality and your fixed and insane belief that you can change Reality. In the dreams you see when you are awake the special relationship has a special place. It is the means by which you try to make your sleeping dreams come true and you do not awaken from this. The special relationship is your determination to keep your hold on unreality and to prevent yourself from waking to Godís Reality. While you see more value in dreaming that you are separate from God than in awakening to God you will not let go of the special relationship.
6. The personal mind uses your dream of separation from God to maintain your dream of separation from God. But the Holy Spirit is very practical in Its Wisdom and It accepts your dreams of separation and uses them as a means to awaken you to God. The first change before the dream of separation disappears completely is that it is changed into a happy dream that reflects Godís Love. This is what the Holy Spirit does with the special relationship. The Holy Spirit does not destroy the special relationship or snatch it away from you. But the Holy Spirit does use it in a way that is different from the personal mindís use of it. The Holy Spirit uses the special relationship to make the Holy Spiritís Purpose real to you. The special relationship will remain with you, not as a source of pain and guilt but as a source of Joy and Freedom. It is not for you in your identification with a personal self because that is the source of its misery. Its unholiness keeps it a thing of separation but its Holiness becomes an offering that you extend to be all that you perceive.
7. Through your extension of the Holy relationship your special relationship becomes your means for undoing guilt in everything that you perceive. It is a happy dream and one which you will extend to all of your perceptions. The Holy Spirit has not forgotten you or any part of your mind in the Purpose that the Holy Spirit has given to you. The Holy Spirit uses every call for Love that you perceive as an opportunity to extend salvation to your entire mind. And your entire mind will be awakened to God through your Holy relationship. If you only recognized the Holy Spiritís Gratitude to you! And your Christ Mindís Gratitude through the Holy Spirit! Your Christ Mind is joined with you in the Holy Spiritís Purpose because you are of One Mind with the Holy Spirit.
8. Do not let your dream of separation from God take hold and make you unaware of God. It is not strange that dreams can make an unreal world. What is incredible is your wish to make an unreal world. Your relationship with the other is now one in which this wish has been removed because its purpose has been changed from a dream of separation to Truth. You are not yet sure of this and you think that this may be the dream. Thatís because you are so used to choosing among dreams that you do not see that you have finally made the choice between Truth and all illusions.
9. Yet Heaven is sure and It is no dream. Heavenís coming into your awareness means that you have chosen Truth and Heaven has come into your awareness because you have been willing to let your special relationship meet Its conditions. The Holy Spirit has gently laid your Real Perception in your relationship. It is the perception of Happiness from which you will awaken to God, naturally and easily. Just as your sleeping and waking dreams in the world that you perceive represent the same wishes in your mind, so do your Real Perceptions and the Truth of Heaven join in the Will of God. Your dream of awakening to God is easily transferred to God. This dream reflects your Will, Which is One with Godís Will. What this Will is has always been.
3. Light in the Dream
1. You who have spent your life denying Truth and Reality for illusions and fantasy have walked the way of dreams. You were once awake in God and then you chose to be asleep to God and you have gone deeper and deeper into sleep. All of your dreams lead to more dreams and all of your fantasies, which seem to make truth out of illusion, only make your illusion deeper. Your goal was a denial of God in which no awareness of God could enter. You sought a denial so complete that you could hide from Truth Forever in complete insanity. What you forgot was that God cannot destroy God. God is within you. In denial you can hide God from you but your denial cannot destroy God.
2. As you become more aware of God you will rush to denial, shrinking from the Truth. Sometimes you will retreat into lesser forms of fear; sometimes you will retreat into stark terror. But you will advance to Truth because It is your Goal. The Goal you have accepted is Knowledge of God and you have signified your willingness for It. When you are afraid you have stepped back into denial. When this happens, quickly join with your Christ Mind in a Holy Instant and this will be enough to remind you that your Goal is God.
3. Truth has rushed to meet you since you called upon It. If you knew your Christ Mind is with you on the way that you have chosen it would be impossible for you to be afraid. You do not know this because your journey into denial has been long and cruel and you have gone deep into it. A little flicker of your eyelids, which have been closed in denial so long, has not yet been sufficient to give you confidence in the Self that you have so long despised. You go toward Love still hating It and terribly afraid of Its judgment on you. You do not realize that you are not afraid of Love but you are afraid of what you have made of Love. You are advancing to Loveís Meaning and away from all the illusions in which you have surrounded Love. When you retreat from Love to illusions your fear increases because from illusions what you think Love means is fearful. But that is nothing to you who travel swiftly away from fear with your Christ Mind.
4. You who extend Holiness in your perception of another extend your Christ Mind because when you extended your Self you chose to no longer be isolated to a personal mind. Your Christ Mind will not leave you in denial because you have made the choice to leave denial to remember your Christ Mind. In your Holy relationship with another is the Love that replaces your perception of a world. Fear must disappear before you now. Do not be tempted to snatch away the gift of faith in God that you have extended to the other because you will only frighten yourself. Your gift of faith extends Forever because God receives it and you cannot take it back. You have accepted God. The Holiness of your relationship is established in Heaven. You do not understand What you have accepted but remember that your understanding is not necessary. All that is necessary is your desire to understand because that is your desire to be Holy. Godís Will is granted to you because you desire the Only Thing that you ever had or that you ever were.
5. Each instant that you spend with your Christ Mind will teach you that your Goal of Holiness is possible and will strengthen your desire to reach It. In your desire for Holiness, Holiness is accomplished because your desire is in complete accord with all the Power of the Holy Spiritís Will. No little, faltering footsteps that you may take can separate your desire from the Holy Spiritís Will or from the Holy Spiritís Strength. Your Christ Mind is with you as surely as you chose to extend your Self to your perception of another. You will not separate because your Christ Mind is with you in your advance to Truth. Where you go with your Christ Mind you carry God with you.
6. In your relationship with the other you have extended your Christ Mind to bring Heaven to your mindís perception, where Heaven was hidden in your denial. You have been willing to undo your denial and this willingness has strengthened your awareness of God in your perception. If you are willing to be aware of God you will be aware of God. The denial that remains in your mind will be brought to your Christ Mind and will be removed Forever. Your Christ Mindís Need for you is your need for salvation. Your Christ Mind will extend to you what you extend to your Christ Mind. When you extended yourself to encompass your perception of another you answered your Christ Mind.
7. You bring salvation with you now as you bring Love to replace your perception of a world. Denial in you has been undone. From the Holy Instant carry your awareness of God with you throughout the world in your mind. You are made whole in your desire to make yourself whole. Do not let time worry you because all the fear that you experience is really past. Time is readjusted to help you do with your Christ Mind what the personal selfís separate past tries to hinder. You have gone past fear because you have united your mind in Love.
8. All the Love of Heaven goes with you. Godís Eternal Love shines on you. Heaven joins with you in your advance to Heaven. When such Power is with you to give your little desire Strength you cannot remain in denial. You are uniting your mind after a long and meaningless journey of separation that led nowhere. You have extended your Love to your perception of another who seemed outside of your mind and your Love will light your way. From this Love Godís Love will extend back through your denial and forward to God to undo the personal selfís past and make room in your awareness for Godís Eternal Presence in Which Everything is radiant with Love.
4. The Little Willingness
1. The Holy Instant comes to you as a result of your determination to be Holy. It is the Answer. Your desire for It and your willingness to let It come precede Its coming. You prepare your mind for It only by recognizing that you want It above everything else. It is not necessary that you do more than this; in fact, it is necessary that you realize that you cannot do more. Do not attempt to give the Holy Spirit what It does not ask for or you will confuse the personal mind with the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit asks little and It is the Holy Spirit that adds Greatness and Might. The Holy Spirit joins with you to make the Holy Instant far greater than you can understand with the personal mind. It is your realization that you need do so little that enables the Holy Spirit to give so much.
2. Do not trust your good intentions; they are not enough. But trust completely your willingness to experience the Holy Instant, whatever else may enter. Concentrate only on this and do not be disturbed by the thoughts of the personal mind which surround it. They are why you need the Holy Instant and if they were not here you would not need the Holy Instant. Donít come to the Holy Instant arrogantly assuming that you must achieve what It brings. The miracle of the Holy Instant lies in your willingness to let It be What It is. And in your willingness for this lies your acceptance of yourself as God means you to be.
3. It is not humility for you to be content with littleness. Humility requires that you not be content with less than the Greatness that comes from God. Your difficulty with the Holy Instant comes from your fixed conviction that you are unworthy of It. This is only the personal mindís determination that you be what it wants to make of you. God dwells within you and Godís Dwelling Place is not unworthy of God. If you believe you can block God from being within you then you are trying to interfere with Godís Will. You do not need the Strength of willingness to come from you but from Godís Will.
4. The Holy Instant comes to you from your little willingness combined with the Limitless Power of Godís Will. You have been mistaken in thinking that you need to prepare yourself for God. If you make arrogant preparations for Holiness it is because you believe that it is up to you to establish the conditions for Peace. God has already established them and they do not wait upon your willingness to be what they are. You only need to be willing to be taught the conditions for Peace. If you hold on to the belief that you are unworthy of learning this you are interfering with the lesson by believing that you have to make the learner different. You did not make yourself and you cannot make yourself different. Would you first make a miracle and then expect one to be made for you?
5. In the Holy Instant you ask the question of God, ďWhat are You?Ē and the Answer is given to you by God. Do not seek to answer yourself in your identification with a personal self but receive the Answer as It is given to you by God. Do not attempt to make yourself Holy to be ready to receive the Answer because that is to confuse your role with Godís Role. Real Correction cannot come to you when you think that you must make correction before Real Correction can come. Real Correction comes when you offer It nothing more than the simple willingness to let It come. Godís coming into your awareness is your Correction. Instead of preparing yourself for God, think instead:
I, in whom God dwells, am worthy of God.
God created Its Dwelling Place as God wants It to be.
I do not have to make myself ready for God but I only need to not interfere with Godís Plan to restore me to the awareness that I am Eternally Ready.
I do not need to add anything to Godís Plan.
But to receive Godís Plan I must not substitute my own in place of It.
6. And that is all. Add more and you take away the little that is asked of you. Remember that in your split mind you made guilt and that your plan for escaping your guilt for separating from God has been to increase your guilt and to make salvation fearful. You will only add fear if you try to prepare yourself for Love. Your preparation for the Holy Instant belongs to the Holy Spirit, Which gives the Holy Instant to you. Release yourself to the Holy Spirit, Which has the Function of releasing you. Do not assume the Holy Spiritís Function but give the Holy Spirit what It asks so that you will learn how little is your part and how Great is the Holy Spiritís Part.
7. It is the little that is asked of you that makes the Holy Instant so easy and so natural for you. You make It difficult because you insist that there must be more that you need to do. You find it difficult to accept that you need to do so little to receive so much. You find it personally insulting that your contribution and the Holy Spiritís contribution are so extremely disproportionate. You are still convinced that your understanding is a powerful contribution to the Truth and that it makes Truth What It is. But you do not need to understand anything. Your salvation is easy because it asks of you only what you can give right now.
8. Do not forget that it was your decision to make everything that is easy and natural for you seem impossible. If you believe that the Holy Instant is difficult for you it is because you have made yourself the judge of what is possible and you are unwilling to give this position to the Holy Spirit, Which knows What is possible. Your whole belief that some miracles are harder than others is centered in this. Everything that God Wills is not only possible but has already been done. The past is gone because it never happened in Reality. Only in your mind, which believes it has a past, is its undoing needed.
5. The Happy Dream
1. Prepare now for undoing what never was. If you already understood the difference between Truth and illusion you would not need correction. The Holy Instant, the Holy relationship, the Holy Spiritís Teaching, and all the other means by which your salvation is accomplished would have no purpose. These are all aspects of the Plan to change your illusions of fear into happy illusions from which you will easily become aware of God again. Donít put the personal mind in charge of this because through it you cannot distinguish between advance and retreat. The personal mind has judged as failure some of your greatest advances toward Truth and it has evaluated as success some of your deepest retreats into fear.
2. Do not approach the Holy Instant after you have tried to remove all fear and hatred from your mind; that is the Holy Instantís Function. Do not attempt to overlook guilt before you ask the Holy Spirit for help; that is the Holy Spiritís Function. Your part is only to offer to the Holy Spirit your little willingness to forgive yourself by letting the Holy Spirit remove all fear and hatred and guilt from your mind. To build your part in the plan of the Atonement the Holy Spirit will join Its understanding of Truth to your little faith and It will make sure that you fulfill it easily. With the Holy Spirit you will build a ladder that is planted firmly in the solid rock of your faith and that will rise to Heaven. You will ascend to Heaven with a mind that has been made whole again.
3. Through your Holy relationship, which is reborn and blessed in every Holy Instant that you extend to it from the Holy Spirit, you lift your entire mind to Heaven. You cannot plan for this or prepare yourself for this with the personal mind. It is possible because God Wills it and God will not change Its Mind about it. Your purpose and the Means for accomplishing it both belong to God. You have accepted your purpose and the Means will be provided for you to meet it. A purpose without the means is inconceivable and God will provide the Means because you share Godís Purpose.
4. Happy illusions translate easily into Truth, not because they are illusions, but because they are Happy and so they must be Loving. The message of a Happy illusion is ďGodís Will be doneĒ not ďI want it this wayĒ. It is impossible for you to understand from the personal mind how the Means and the Purpose align. You do not even realize that you have accepted the Holy Spiritís Purpose as your own and the personal mind only wants to bring unholy means to Its accomplishment. Your little faith is all that is needed to change your purpose to the Holy Spiritís Purpose and for you to receive the Means and to use Them.
5. It is not an illusion to extend your Self in place of the personal mindís projections so your Holy relationship is not an illusion. All that remains of illusions within your relationship with the other is that it is still special. But it is very useful to the Holy Spirit, Which has a special Function in the world that you perceive. Your Holy relationship will become the Happy illusion from which the Holy Spirit can extend Joy to the rest of your mind through corrected perception and teach you that Love is Happiness, not fear. Let the Holy Spirit fulfill the function It gives to your relationship by letting the Holy Spirit accept the relationshipís function for you. Your relationship will have everything that the Holy Spirit needs to make it Holy, as the Holy Spirit wants it to be.
6. When you feel that your awareness of the Holiness of your relationship is threatened by anything stop instantly and offer your willingness to the Holy Spirit, despite fear, to make this instant a Holy Instant. The Holy Spirit will never fail in answering. Do not forget that in your relationship your mind is made One in your awareness again, so whether the threat to your Peace seems to come from you or from the other it is the same. The Power of your extending blessing lies in the fact that it is now impossible for you to experience fear without including the other or for you to deal with fear without including the other. This is not necessary or possible. Just as this is impossible, it is impossible for the Holy Instant to come to your mind and to not extend to the other in your Holy relationship. When you perceive fear in yourself or in the other the Holy Instant will come to your mind when you request It.
7. When your awareness of the Holiness of your relationship is threatened you should remember how deeply you are indebted to the other and how much gratitude you owe them for the opportunity to extend Holiness in your awareness that your relationship with them gives to you. Pay your debt by extending Happiness. Say to yourself:
I desire that this instant be Holy for me so that I may extend it to the other, whom I love.
It is not possible for me to be aware that I have Love without extending it or to perceive Love without being aware that It is in me.
It is wholly possible for me to extend Love now.
So I choose this instant as the one to offer to the Holy Spiri, so that Its Blessing may extend to my relationship and keep Peace in my awareness.
6. Beyond the Body
1. There is nothing outside of you. This is what you ultimately must learn because it is in this realization that your Oneness with God is restored to your awareness. God extends only God and God does not depart from Godís Extension or make It separate from God. Godís Oneness is your Home and you have never left God or your Home. Heaven is neither a place nor a condition; It is merely your awareness of Perfect Oneness and your Knowledge that there is nothing else outside or within this Oneness.
2. God can extend only Knowledge of God. There is nothing else to give. Your belief that you can give something outside of yourself and get something outside of yourself has cost you your awareness of Heaven and of your Identity. But you have done a stranger thing than you yet realize. You have projected guilt from your mind onto the body. But a body cannot be guilty because it cannot do anything of itself. You deceive yourself if you think you hate the body. You hate your mind because guilt has entered into it and you want guilt to be separate from you so you project it onto others. But this does not remove guilt from your mind.
3. Mind is One, bodies are not. Only by assigning the bodyís properties to your mind does a split mind seem possible. So it is your mind that seems fragmented and private and isolated. The guilt in your mind keeps your mind split as your guilt is projected onto the body. The body suffers and dies because it is attacked to keep your mind split so you donít remember your Identity. Your mind cannot attack but you can make fantasies of attack and direct the body to act them out. But it is not what the body is really capable of doing that satisfies you. Unless you believe that the body is actually acting out your fantasies you will attack the body by increasing your projection of guilt on it.
4. Your mind is clearly delusional in this. It cannot attack but you maintain that it can and you hurt the body to prove that it can. Your mind cannot attack but you can deceive yourself and this is all you do when you believe that you have attacked the body. You can project guilt but your mind does not lose guilt by projecting it. Though you can clearly misperceive the function of the body you cannot change the bodyís function from what the Holy Spirit wants to use it for. The body was not made by Love but Love does not condemn it. It can use the body Lovingly, respecting what you have made and using it to save you from your illusions.
5. Let your instruments of separation be reinterpreted as means for your salvation and let them be used for Love. Welcome and support your shift from illusions of vengeance to release from them. Your perception of the body can clearly be sick but do not project this onto the body. Your wish to make destructive what cannot destroy has no real effect at all. What is One with God is only as God wants It to be, this being Godís Will. You cannot make Godís Will destructive. You can only make illusions in which your will conflicts with Godís Will.
6. It is insane for you to use the body as the scapegoat for your guilt, directing its attack, and blaming it for what you wished it to do. It is impossible for you to act out illusions because it is still the illusions that you want and they have nothing to do with what the body can do. The body does not make illusions and illusions make the body a liability where it could be an asset. Your illusions make the body your enemy: weak, vulnerable, treacherous, and worthy of the hate that you invest in it. How has this served you? In your identification with a personal self you identify with this thing that you hate; an instrument of vengeance and the perceived source of your guilt. You have done this to a thing which has no meaning, proclaiming it to be your Christ Mindís home and turning it against your Christ Mind.
7. The body is the host that your split mind has made for God but neither God nor your Christ Mind can enter a home that harbors hate and where the personal mind has sown the seeds of vengeance, violence, and death. This thing that you made to serve your guilt stands between you and the unity of your mind. Your mind is joined but you do not identify with the part that you have projected away onto a world that seems outside of you. Identifying with a body, you see yourself locked in a separate prison, removed from what you perceive and as incapable of reaching out as being reached. You hate the body as a prison that you have made and you want to destroy it. But you refuse to escape from it and leave it unharmed and without your guilt upon it.
8. Yet only by releasing the body from your guilt can you escape from it. The home of vengeance is not your Home; the place you made to house your guilt is not a prison. The body is an illusion of yourself. The body is a limit imposed on the Oneness that is an Eternal Property of Mind. Oneness is internal and It reaches to Itself. It is not made up of different parts which reach to each other. Oneness does not go outside Itself. Within Itself It is Limitless and there is nothing outside of It. Oneness encompasses everything. It encompasses you entirely; you within It and It within you. There is nothing else anywhere or ever.
9. The body is outside of your Reality and only seems to surround you, shutting you off from the rest of your mind and keeping you apart from it and it from you. It is not there. There is no barrier between God and you who are One with God and you can only be separated from your Oneness with God in illusions. The body is not your Reality, though you believe that it is and it could only be so if God were wrong. God would have had to separate Itself from What is One with It to make this possible. God would have had to make different things and to establish different orders of reality, only some of which were Love. But Love must be Forever like Itself, Changeless Forever, and Forever without alternative. And so It is. You cannot put a barrier around yourself because God has not placed a barrier between you and God.
10. You can stretch out your mind and reach to Heaven. You who have extended your Identity to encompass another who seemed outside of you have begun to reach beyond the body, but not outside yourself, to recognize your Limitless Identity. This cannot be outside of you, where God is not. God is not a body and God did not make you what God is not and where God cannot be. You are surrounded only by God. There are no limits on you who are encompassed by God.
11. Even in your identification with a personal self you have sometimes had the experience of what you would call being ďtransported beyond yourselfĒ. This feeling of liberation far exceeds the illusion of oneness and freedom that you sometimes hope for in a special relationship. It is a sense of actual escape from limitations. If you consider what this ďtransportationĒ really is you will realize that you are suddenly unaware of the body and that you join something else that your mind enlarges to encompass. It becomes part of you as you unite with it and both you and it become whole as you perceive neither as separate. What really happens is that you have given up your illusion of limitation and lost your fear of union. The Love that instantly replaces fear you extend to what has freed you and unites with it. And while this lasts you are not uncertain of your Identity and you do not want to limit It. You have escaped from fear to Peace and you donít ask what is real; you accept What is Real. You have accepted Reality in place of the body and you have let yourself be one with something beyond the body simply by not letting your mind be limited to a body.
12. This occurs regardless of the physical distance, the respective positions in space, and the differences in size and quality that seems to be between you and what you join. Time is not relevant because you can join with something past, present, or anticipated. The ďsomethingĒ can be anything and anywhere: a sight, a sound, a thought, a memory, or even a general idea without specific reference. Yet in every case you join it without reservation because you love it and want to be with it. You rush to meet it, letting your sense of limitation melt away, suspending and gently setting aside the seeming ďlawsĒ the body obeys.
13. There is no violence in this escape from the body. You donít attack the body; you only perceive it properly. It does not limit you because you donít want it to. You are not really ďlifted outĒ of it because it cannot contain you. You go where you want to be and you donít lose but you gain a sense of Self. In these instants of release from physical restrictions you experience much of what happens in the Holy Instant: the lifting of the barriers of time and space, the sudden experience of Peace and Joy, and above all you lack awareness of the body. When it happens you do not question whether or not all this is possible.
14. This is all possible because you want it. The sudden expansion of your awareness of yourself that takes place with your desire for the Holy Instant is the irresistible appeal that the Holy Instant has for you. The Holy Instant calls to you to be your Self within Its Safe Embrace. The laws of limits lift from your mind to welcome you to an Open Mind that is Free. Come to this Refuge Where you can be yourself in Peace. This does not happen through your destroying or breaking out barriers but through your quiet melting inward. Peace will join you in the Holy Instant simply because you have been willing to let go of the limits that you have placed on Love. You will join Love Where Love is and Where Love has led you, in answer to Loveís Gentle Call to you to be at Peace.
7. I Need Do Nothing
1. You still have too much faith in the body as a source of strength. All your plans involve the bodyís comfort, protection, or enjoyment in some way. This means that you interpret the body as an end in itself and not as a means for correction and that you still find separation from God attractive. You have not accepted correction if you still have separation as your goal and therefore you have not met your one responsibility Ė accepting correction of your perception that you are separate from God. You will not welcome correction while you prefer pain and Self-destruction.
2. There is one thing you that have never done: completely forgotten the body. Perhaps it has sometimes faded from your awareness but it has never completely disappeared from your awareness. You are asked to do this for only an Instant but in that Instant the miracle of correction happens. After that Instant you will be aware of the body again but never in quite the same way. Every Instant that you spend without an awareness of the body will give you a different view of it when you return to an awareness of it.
3. There is no instant in which the body exists at all. You always remember it or anticipate it but you never experience it now. Only the personal selfís seeming past and projected future make the body seem real to you. Time controls your perception of the body entirely because your perception of separation from God is never wholly in the present. In any single instant you experience the attraction of separation from God as pain and nothing else and if you recognized this you would avoid it. Guilt has no attraction to you now. Its whole attraction to you is imaginary and therefore you must think of in the past or in the future.
4. Until you are willing to see no past and no future for just an Instant you will have reservations about the Holy Instant. You cannot prepare for the Holy Instant without placing It in the future. The instant that you desire the Holy Instant you will be released in It. In the world that you perceive one way to God is to spend your time preparing for the Holy Instant and this does have its moments of success. This course does not attempt to teach more than that path teaches in time but it does aim at saving time. You may be trying to follow a very long road to the Goal of God that you have accepted. It is extremely difficult for you to reach total correction of your perception that you are separate from God by fighting against perceived ďsinĒ. You will have to expend enormous effort trying to make Holy the body that the personal mind despises. It is also not necessary for you to spend a lifetime in contemplation and long periods of meditation aimed at detachment from the body. All these attempts would ultimately succeed because of their Purpose but these means are tedious and very time consuming and they all look to the future for release from a present state of unworthiness and inadequacy.
5. Your way is different from these paths, not in Purpose, but in means. A Holy relationship is a means of saving time. One instant of Holiness that you extend to your relationship with another restores Reality to your mind. You are prepared for the Holy Instant and all that you now need to remember is that you need do nothing. It is far more useful now for you to concentrate on this than to consider what you should do. When Peace comes at last after wrestling with temptation and fighting against ďsinĒ, when enlightenment comes after a lifetime of contemplation, or when the Goal is achieved in any way it will come with the happy realization : ďI need do nothingĒ.
6. Here is the ultimate release that you will eventually find. You do not need time for this because time has been saved for you since you extended your Self to your perception of another. This is the special means that this course uses to save you time. You are not making use of this course if you insist on neglecting the means that was made for you in favor of other means. Save time for your Christ Mind with this one preparation and practice doing nothing else: ďI need do nothing.Ē This is a statement of undivided allegiance to your Christ Mind. Believe it for just one instant and you will accomplish more than you would accomplish in a century of contemplation or of struggle against temptation.
7. To ďdoĒ involves the body. When you recognize that you need do nothing you will withdraw the bodyís value from your mind. This is the door through which you quickly slip past centuries of effort to escape from time. This is the way that the separation loses all of its attraction for you now because you deny time and the past and the future are gone for you. When you need do nothing you have no need for time. For you to do nothing is for you to rest and to make a place within your mind where the activity of the body ceases to demand your attention. The Holy Spirit then comes into and abides in this place of rest within you. And the Holy Spirit will remain with you when you forget again and the bodyís activities return to occupy your conscious mind.
8. There is always this place of rest within you. Within it you are more aware of the Quiet Center than of the storming personal mind raging around it. This Quiet Center in Which you do nothing remains with you and gives you rest in the midst of all the busy doing to which the Holy Spirit sends you. From this Center you will be directed in how to use the body for correction of your perception of separation from God. It is this Center, from Which the body is absent, that will keep you aware that the body cannot separate you from God.
8. The Little Garden
1. It is only your awareness of the body that makes Love seem limited to you because the body is a limit on Love. Your belief in limited Love was the bodyís origin and it was made by you to limit the Limitless. This is not merely a metaphor; the body was made to limit you. You cannot know yourself as an idea when you see yourself in a body. Through the personal mind everything that you recognize is some external form. You cannot even think of God without a body or some form that you think you recognize.
2. The body cannot know and while you limit your awareness to its tiny senses you will not see the Limitlessness that surrounds you. God cannot come into a body and you cannot join God in a body. Your limits on Love will always seem to shut out God from your mind and seem to keep you apart from God. A body is like a tiny fence around a little part of a Glorious Completion. Itís like an infinitely small circle around a very tiny segment of Heaven that is splintered from the Whole and that proclaims that God cannot enter its tiny kingdom.
3. The personal mind rules cruelly within this kingdom. To defend this speck of dust it wants you to fight against Reality. This fragment of Godís mind that has been limited to a body and a personal self is such a tiny part of your Whole Mind that if you could see your Whole Mind you would see instantly that it is like the tiniest sunbeam to the sun or the faintest ripple on the surface of the ocean. In their amazing arrogance the tiny sunbeam has decided that it is the sun and the almost imperceptible ripple has decided that it is the ocean. Think how alone and frightened are these little thoughts, these infinitesimal illusions that hold themselves apart from their limitless selves. To the sunbeam the sun is its devouring ďenemyĒ and the ripple is terrified of the ocean that wants to swallow it.
4. But neither the sun nor the 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. But that segment is not lost to them because the sun would not be the sun without its beams of light and the ocean would not be the ocean without ripples on its surface. And what the sunbeam and the ripple think in no way changes their total dependence on the sun and the ocean for what they are. Their whole existence remains in the sun and the ocean. Without the sun the sunbeam would be gone and the ripple is inconceivable without the ocean.
5. And so it is with you who seem to be in a world inhabited by bodies. Each body seems to house a separate, disconnected thought that lives isolated and apart from your mind, which perceives it. And you seem separate from the Mind of God, with Which you are One. Your tiny fragment of mind seems self-contained, needing others for some things but by no means wholly dependent Godís Mind, with Which it is One, for everything. But it needs the Mind with Which it is One to give it meaning because by itself it means nothing. It does not have a life apart and by itself.
6. Like the sun and the ocean in the metaphor above your Wholeness continues, completely unaware that you regard yourself as an isolated personal self. This tiny part of your Wholeness which you have given over to identify with a personal self is not missing from the Whole because it could not exist if it were separate from the Whole and the Whole would not be Whole without it. It is not a separate kingdom ruled by the idea of separation from the Whole. Nor does a fence surround it and prevent it from joining with God, Which is your Wholeness. This little part of you is no different from the Whole of you, being continuous with It and One with It. It does not lead a separate life because its Life is the Oneness of your Being in God.
7. Do not accept the little, fenced off personal self as you. The sun and the ocean are nothing beside What you are. Neither the sun nor the ocean has the Power that resides in you. Do you want to remain within your tiny kingdom, a sorry and bitter ruler who looks on nothing, yet would die to defend it? The little personal self is not your Home. Surrounding it is the Glorious Wholeness of Godís Love, Which offers all of Its Happiness and Deep Content to every part of Itself. The little part that you think you have separated off is no exception.
8. Love does not know bodies and Love reaches to everything that is One with It. Loveís Limitlessness is Its Meaning. It is extended completely impartially and It encompasses Everything to preserve and keep Itself Complete. In your tiny kingdom of the personal mind you have so little! This is where you need to call on Love to enter. Look at the dry, unproductive, scorched, and joyless desert that makes up your little kingdom and realize the Life and Joy that Love will bring to it from God. You will return to God with Love.
9. The Thought of God surrounds your little kingdom and waits at the barrier you have built to It to come inside and rain life-giving water upon the barren ground. See how life springs up everywhere! The desert of your mind becomes a green, deep, and quiet garden from which you can extend Love in your awareness in place of the personal mindís barren projections. Everything to which you extend Love will return Love from Heaven to you. You extend Holiness one by one but the Love that you extend in your perceptions of others will stay with you. Under Loveís Beneficence your little garden will expand and reach out to your perceptions, which thirst for living water but cannot find it in the isolation of a personal mind.
10. Extend your Self in place of the world of separation that you perceive and turn your mind into a quiet garden where you receive Its blessing. This blessing will grow and extend across the desert of your mind, leaving nothing you perceive locked away from Love. As you extend your Self you will recognize your Self and see the Loving garden of your mind gently transformed into Heaven with all of Godís Love shining upon it.
11. The Holy Instant is your invitation to Love to enter into your bleak and joyless kingdom to transform it into a
12. You can be sure that Love has entered your special relationship and It 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 that you project onto the other. You will not be able to welcome Love without extending It to your perception of the other to replace the personal mindís projections. You cannot know God in the isolation of a personal mind and God cannot know you without the part of your mind that you have projected away and onto a world. In the Wholeness of your mind you are aware of Love and Love does not fail to recognize you.
13. You have reached the end of your ancient journey of separation but you have not yet realized that it is over. You are worn and tired and the desertís dust still seems to cloud your eyes and keep you blind. But you have welcomed the Holy Spirit and the Holy Spirit has come and welcomes you. The Holy Spirit has waited long to give you welcome, so receive it now because the Holy Spirit wants you to know the Holy Spirit. Only a little wall of dust is projected between you and your perception of the other in your Holy relationship so blow on it lightly and with happy laughter and it will fall away so that you can walk into the garden Love has prepared for your entire mind.
9. The Two Worlds
1. You have been told to bring illusion to Truth and guilt to Holiness and that error must be corrected at its source. And so it is the tiny part of your Mind that seems split off and separate from the rest of your Mind that the Holy Spirit needs. The rest of your Mind is fully in Godís Keeping and It doesnít need a guide. But this small part which is wild and delusional needs help because in its delusions it thinks it is its own god, whole and omnipotent, sole ruler of a kingdom it set apart to tyrannize and limit with madness. This is the little part that you think you stole from Heaven. Give it back to Heaven because Heaven has not lost sight of it but you have lost sight of Heaven. Let the Holy Spirit remove from this tiny part of your mind the withered kingdom in which you have set it off from the rest of your mind. Your split mind has surrounded it with illusions, guarded it with attack, and reinforced it with hate. But within its barricades a tiny Part of God does reside, Complete and Holy and Serene, unaware of what you think surrounds It.
2. Do not be separate from God because God surrounds this tiny part of your mind. God has brought Oneness to it, exchanging Truth for your little offering of illusion. This is done simply because of what the little kingdom you offer really is. You see illusions and lifelessness only through the bodyís eyes and the personal mindís perceptions. The bodyís sight is so distorted and the messages it transmits to you, who made it to limit your awareness, are little and limited and so fragmented that they are meaningless.
3. Insane messages seem to be returned to your mind from the world of bodies that you made with insanity. These messages bear witness that the world is true because you projected these messages onto it to make it seem true. Everything these messages relay to you is external and there are no messages that speak to you of What lies within your mind, below this level of perception, because the body cannot communicate Truth. Its eyes cannot perceive Truth, its senses are unaware of Truth, and its tongue cannot relay Truthís Messages. But God can bring you to Truth if you are willing to follow the Holy Spirit through the seeming terror of the level of your mind that lies between the level of the world that you perceive and God if you trust the Holy Spirit to not leave you there. It is not the Holy Spiritís Purpose to frighten you but it seems to be your purpose in your identification with a personal self. You are severely tempted to abandon the Holy Spirit at the outside ring of fear but the Holy Spirit will lead you safely through fear and far beyond it.
4. The circle of fear lies just below the level of your mind that the body sees and it seems to be the whole foundation on which the world-level of your mind is based. Here are all of your split mindís illusions: its twisted thoughts and insane attacks; its fury and vengeance and betrayal, which were made to keep your guilt in place so that the world could arise from it and keep it hidden. But the shadow of guilt rises to the surface to darkly color the external manifestations on the world-level of your mind and to bring despair, loneliness, and joylessness there. The intensity of your guilt is veiled by the heavy form of a world that seems to be separate from your mind to keep guilt hidden. The body cannot see this level of guilt and fear because the body was made to protect that level from your awareness. The bodyís eyes will never look at the guilt in your mind but they will see what guilt dictates.
5. As long as you believe that your guilt is real you will project it onto the body and see it there and the body will act as guilt directs it. The seeming reality of your guilt is the illusion that makes guilt seem heavy, opaque, impenetrable, and a real foundation for the personal mindís thought system. Your guiltís thinness and transparency are not apparent until you see the Love beyond it. And then you see it is a fragile veil before the Truth.
6. Guilt is like a bank of low clouds that looks solid as it blocks the sun. But its impenetrable appearance is wholly an illusion. The clouds give way to the mountain tops that rise above them and they have no power at all to hold you back if you are willing to climb above them and into the sun. Try to touch guilt and like a cloud it disappears; attempt to grasp it and your hands hold nothing.
7. In clouds you can imagine you see a whole world rising: A solid mountain range, a lake, a city Ė all this rises in your imagination and what you project onto them you see there to assure you that it is there. Figures move about, actions seem real, and forms shift from loveliness to grotesque. They go back and forth as long as you want to play the game of make-believe. But however long you play at it, and regardless of how much imagination you bring to it, you do not confuse what you imagine in clouds with the world you stand on and you do not seek to make it real.
8. This is how it should be with the dark clouds of your guilt, which are no more impenetrable and no more substantial than the clouds in the sky. You will not bruise yourself against them as you travel through them. Let the Holy Spirit teach you that your guilt is insubstantial as It guides you past it because beyond your guilt is Perception that reflects Love. Guiltís shadow falls on a world that you perceive that is far from Love but guilt cannot cast a shadow on Love.
9. Love is your Real Perception, Where guilt meets with forgiveness. Here, the world that seems outside of your mind you see without the shadow of guilt upon it. Here is your new Perception, Where everything is bright and shiny with Innocence, washed in the waters of forgiveness and cleansed of every evil thought that you laid upon it. Here you do not attack your Christ Mind and so you are welcome. Here is your Innocence, waiting to protect you and to make you ready for your final step inward to God. Here you lay guilt aside and it is gently replaced by Purity and Love.
10. But your forgiving in not the end. Your forgiving makes you aware of Love but it does not make you One with Love. Your forgiving is the source of your healing because it reminds you of Love but it is not the source of Love. Your forgiving leads you up to the Source of Love Where Love can be without interference so that God can take the final step unhindered. You cannot take the step yourself beyond this
11. This course will lead you to God but God is still beyond the scope of its lesson plan. There is no need to speak of What must Forever lie beyond words. Your learning cannot go beyond Real Perception and when you attain Real Perception you will go beyond It but in a way different from learning. Where your learning ends God begins. There is no learning in God because God is Complete. Do not dwell on What you cannot yet attain because there is too much for you to learn. You still must attain your readiness for God.
12. Love is not learned because Its Meaning lies within Itself. Your learning ends when you have recognized all that Love is not. What Love is not is what interferes with Love in your awareness and this is what you need to undo. You donít learn Love because there never was a time when you did not know Love. Learning is useless in the Presence of God because Godís Knowledge of you and your Knowledge of God transcends all learning. In Godís Presence everything that you have learned is meaningless and is replaced Forever by the Knowledge of Love and Its One Meaning.
13. The once unholy purpose of your relationship with the other has been uprooted from the world of fear that you perceive, safely brought through your barrier of guilt, washed with forgiveness, and firmly rooted in your Perception of Love. From Love it calls to you to follow the course it took, rising high above illusions and landing gently before the gates of Heaven. The Holy Instant Which you extend to your Holy relationship is the Love that comes to you from beyond your forgiving and that reminds you of All that lies beyond your forgiving. It is through forgiving that you remember Love.
14. When your Memory of God comes to you in the
 You want the illusion of separation from God but the body does not do this for you. The body cannot do anything. The illusion of separation is a decision and perception of your mind.
|Copyright 2009 Elizabeth A. Cronkhite|