ACIM Text Reading for April 23
Chapter 13 ~ The Guiltless World
IX. The Cloud of Guilt
Guilt remains the only thing that hides the Father, for guilt is the attack upon His Son. The guilty always condemn, and having done so they will still condemn, linking the future to the past as is the ego’s law. Fidelity to this law lets no light in, for it demands fidelity to darkness and forbids awakening. The ego’s laws are strict, and breaches are severely punished. Therefore give no obedience to its laws, for they are laws of punishment. And those who follow them believe that they are guilty, and so they must condemn. Between the future and the past the laws of God must intervene, if you would free yourself. Atonement stands between them, like a lamp shining so brightly that the chain of darkness in which you bound yourself will disappear.
Release from guilt is the ego’s whole undoing. Make no one fearful, for his guilt is yours, and by obeying the ego’s harsh commandments you bring its condemnation on yourself, and you will not escape the punishment it offers those who obey it. The ego rewards fidelity to it with pain, for faith in it is pain. And faith can be rewarded only in terms of the belief in which the faith was placed. Faith makes the power of belief, and where it is invested. determines its reward. For faith is always given what is treasured, and what is treasured is returned to you.
The world can give you only what you gave it, for being nothing but your own projection, it has no meaning apart from what you found in it and placed your faith in. Be faithful unto darkness and you will not see, because your faith will be rewarded as you gave it. You will accept your treasure, and if you place your faith in the past, the future will be like it. Whatever you hold dear you think is yours. The power of your valuing will make it so.
Atonement brings a re-evaluation of everything you cherish, for it is the means by which the Holy Spirit can separate the false and the true, which you have accepted into your mind without distinction. Therefore you cannot value one without the other, and guilt has become as true for you as innocence. You do not believe the Son of God is guiltless because you see the past, and see him not. When you condemn a brother you are saying, ‘I who was guilty choose to remain so’. You have denied his freedom, and by so doing you have denied the witness unto yours. You could as easily have freed him from the past, and lifted from his mind the cloud of guilt that binds him to it. And in his freedom would have been your own.
Lay not his guilt upon him, for his guilt lies in his secret thought that he has done this unto you. Would you, then, teach him he is right in his delusion? The idea that the guiltless Son of God can attack himself and make himself guilty is insane. In any form, in anyone, believe this not. For sin and condemnation are the same, and the belief in one is faith in the other, calling for punishment instead of love. Nothing can justify insanity, and to call for punishment upon yourself must be insane.
See no one, then, as guilty, and you will affirm the truth of guiltlessness unto yourself. In every condemnation that you offer the Son of God lies the conviction of your own guilt. If you would have the Holy Spirit make you free of it, accept His offer of Atonement for all your brothers. For so you learn that it is true for you. Remember always that it is impossible to condemn the Son of God in part. Those whom you see as guilty become the witnesses to guilt in you, and you will see it there, for it is there until it is undone. Guilt is always in your mind, which has condemned itself. Project it not, for while you do, it cannot be undone. With everyone whom you release from guilt great is the joy in Heaven, where the witnesses to your fatherhood rejoice.
Guilt makes you blind, for while you see one spot of guilt within you, you will not see the light. And by projecting it the world seems dark, and shrouded in your guilt. You throw a dark veil over it, and cannot see it because you cannot look within. You are afraid of what you would see there, but it is not there. The thing you fear is gone. If you would look within you would see only the Atonement, shining in quiet and in peace upon the altar to your Father.
Do not be afraid to look within. The ego tells you all is black with guilt within you, and bids you not to look. Instead, it bids you look upon your brothers, and see the guilt in them. Yet this you cannot do without remaining blind. For those who see their brothers in the dark, and guilty in the dark in which they shroud them, are too afraid to look upon the light within. Within you is not what you believe is there, and what you put your faith in. Within you is the holy sign of perfect faith your Father has in you. He does not value you as you do. He knows Himself, and knows the truth in you. He knows there is no difference, for He knows not of differences. Can you see guilt where God knows there is perfect innocence? You can deny His knowledge, but you cannot change it. Look, then, upon the light He placed within you, and learn that what you feared was there has been replaced with love.
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ACIM Workbook Lesson for April 23
For morning and evening review:
(95) I am one Self, united with my Creator.
Serenity and perfect peace are mine, because I am one Self,
completely whole, at one with all creation and with God.
(96) Salvation comes from my one Self.
From my one Self, Whose knowledge still remains within my mind,
I see God’s perfect plan for my salvation perfectly fulfilled.
On the hour:
I am one Self, united with my Creator.
On the half hour:
Salvation comes from my one Self.
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ACIM Q&A for the Day:
Q #985: In the manual for teachers it says: “There are many thousands of other forms, all with the same outcome. They merely save time” (M.1.4:2,3). I thought it was the Course that saves the most time. Is that a misprint or a grammatical error or am I missing something. They merely saves time seems to be referring to all the other forms out there.
A: You are correct, the manual does say that the many forms of the universal course save time. The reason for this is that the universal course is one of content, not form, and time belongs to the world of form. When the mind decides to accept the universal truth that the separation never happened, and God’s one Son is innocent, the concept of time disappears. That is how it is “saved.”
Also, students of A Course in Miracles “save time” by not wasting it in pursuit of other forms that are very helpful, but are not their path: “You are not making use of the course if you insist on using means which have served others well, neglecting what was made for you ” (T.18.VII.6:5). We escape the laws of tine through the practice of forgiveness by returning to the thought in the mind that is outside of time. The ego’s perception of grievances and its use of projection are concepts bound by time. The Holy Spirit’s perception is a view from beyond time’s boundaries because it perceives only two timeless thoughts: the separation that never happened, and reality that never changed. Learning to see with His vision thus removes all experience from the chains of time. That is the Course’s “fast track.” It is not a linear process. Time is meaningless in the instant the mind chooses the Holy Spirit, regardless of the way time was used on the path that led to the choice. It is only the mind’s choice (content) that matters. Each choice against the ego is what saves time and saves us from time.