ACIM Text Reading for June 30
Chapter 18 ~ The Passing of the Dream
V. The Happy Dream
Prepare you now for the undoing of what never was. If you already understood the difference between truth and illusion, the Atonement would have no meaning. The holy instant, the holy relationship, the Holy Spirit’s teaching, and all the means by which salvation is accomplished, would have no purpose. For they are all but aspects of the plan to change your dreams of fear to happy dreams, from which you waken easily to knowledge. Put yourself not in charge of this, for you cannot distinguish between advance and retreat. Some of your greatest advances you have judged as failures, and some of your deepest retreats you have evaluated as success.
Never approach the holy instant after you have tried to remove all fear and hatred from your mind. That is its function. Never attempt to overlook your guilt before you ask the Holy Spirit’s help. That is His function. Your part is only to offer Him a little willingness to let Him remove all fear and hatred, and to be forgiven. On your little faith, joined with His understanding, He will build your part in the Atonement and make sure that you fulfil it easily. And with Him, you will build a ladder planted in the solid rock of faith, and rising even to Heaven. Nor will you use it to ascend to Heaven alone.
Through your holy relationship, reborn and blessed in every holy instant you do not arrange, thousands will rise to Heaven with you. Can you plan for this? Or could you prepare yourself for such a function? Yet it is possible, because God wills it. Nor will He change His Mind about it. The means and purpose both belong to Him. You have accepted one; the other will be provided. A purpose such as this, without the means, is inconceivable. He will provide the means to anyone who shares His purpose.
Happy dreams come true, not because they are dreams, but only because they are happy. And so they must be loving. Their message is, ‘Thy Will be done’, and not, ‘I want it otherwise’. The alignment of means and purpose is an undertaking impossible for you to understand. You do not even realise you have accepted the Holy Spirit’s purpose as your own, and you would merely bring unholy means to its accomplishment. The little faith it needed to change the purpose is all that is required to receive the means and use them.
It is no dream to love your brother as yourself. Nor is your holy relationship a dream. All that remains of dreams within it is that it is still a special relationship. Yet it is very useful to the Holy Spirit, Who has a special function here. It will become the happy dream through which He can spread joy to thousands on thousands who believe that love is fear, not happiness. Let Him fulfil the function that He gave to your relationship by accepting it for you, and nothing will be wanting that would make of it what He would have it be.
When you feel the holiness of your relationship is threatened by anything, stop instantly and offer the Holy Spirit your willingness, in spite of fear, to let Him exchange this instant for the holy one that you would rather have. He will never fail in this. But forget not that your relationship is one, and so it must be that whatever threatens the peace of one is an equal threat to the other. The power of joining its blessing lies in the fact that it is now impossible for you or your brother to experience fear alone, or to attempt to deal with it alone. Never believe that this is necessary, or even possible. Yet just as this is impossible, so is it equally impossible that the holy instant come to either of you without the other. And it will come to both at the request of either.
Whoever is saner at the time the threat is perceived should remember how deep is his indebtedness to the other and how much gratitude is due him, and be glad that he can pay his debt by bringing happiness to both. Let him remember this, and say:
ACIM Workbook Lesson for June 30
There is no death. The Son of God is free.
Death is a thought that takes on many forms, often unrecognized. It may appear as sadness, fear, anxiety or doubt; as anger, faithlessness and lack of trust; concern for bodies, envy, and all forms in which the wish to be as you are not may come to tempt you. All such thoughts are but reflections of the worshipping of death as savior and as giver of release.
Embodiment of fear, the host of sin, god of the guilty and the lord of all illusions and deceptions, does the thought of death seem mighty. For it seems to hold all living things within its withered hand; all hopes and wishes in its blighting grasp; all goals perceived but in its sightless eyes. The frail, the helpless and the sick bow down before its image, thinking it alone is real, inevitable, worthy of their trust. For it alone will surely come.
All things but death are seen to be unsure, too quickly lost however hard to gain, uncertain in their outcome, apt to fail the hopes they once engendered, and to leave the taste of dust and ashes in their wake, in place of aspirations and of dreams. But death is counted on. For it will come with certain footsteps when the time has come for its arrival. It will never fail to take all life as hostage to itself.
Would you bow down to idols such as this? Here is the strength and might of God Himself perceived within an idol made of dust. Here is the opposite of God proclaimed as lord of all creation, stronger than God’s Will for life, the endlessness of love and Heaven’s perfect, changeless constancy. Here is the Will of Father and of Son defeated finally, and laid to rest beneath the headstone death has placed upon the body of the holy Son of God.
Unholy in defeat, he has become what death would have him be. His epitaph, which death itself has written, gives no name to him, for he has passed to dust. It says but this: “Here lies a witness God is dead.” And this it writes again and still again, while all the while its worshippers agree, and kneeling down with foreheads to the ground, they whisper fearfully that it is so.
It is impossible to worship death in any form, and still select a few you would not cherish and would yet avoid, while still believing in the rest. For death is total. Either all things die, or else they live and cannot die. No compromise is possible. For here again we see an obvious position, which we must accept if we be sane; what contradicts one thought entirely can not be true, unless its opposite is proven false.
The idea of the death of God is so preposterous that even the insane have difficulty in believing it. For it implies that God was once alive and somehow perished; killed, apparently, by those who did not want Him to survive. Their stronger will could triumph over His, and so eternal life gave way to death. And with the Father died the Son as well.
Death’s worshippers may be afraid. And yet, can thoughts like these be fearful? If they saw that it is only this which they believe, they would be instantly released. And you will show them this today. There is no death, and we renounce it now in every form, for their salvation and our own as well. God made not death. Whatever form it takes must therefore be illusion. This the stand we take today. And it is given us to look past death, and see the life beyond.
Our Father, bless our eyes today. We are Your messengers, and we would look upon the glorious reflection of Your Love which shines in everything. We live and move in You alone. We are not separate from Your eternal life. There is no death, for death is not Your Will. And we abide where You have placed us, in the life we share with You and with all living things, to be like You and part of You forever. We accept Your Thoughts as ours, and our will is one with Yours eternally. Amen.
ACIM Q & A for Today
Q #454: I would like to help my family gain inner peace. I discuss what I can with my wife and kids (ages 9 and 11), and I am much more at peace with God since I began the Course. I know that we have no separate selves, and I want to help my family regain the knowledge I have found through A Course in Miracles. Are there any books or tapes that I can use with my boys?
The Course is best taught by example. If you are centered in the love of Jesus, your boys would sense something about you that would help them learn forgiveness without ever realizing what was happening. Your attitude towards them — when the love of Jesus is doing the parenting, not your ego — would give them the only thing they truly need, which is to know that they are loved and forgiven, and that their mistakes have had no effect on your love for them, and never could. Your inner peace would be the teacher, and they would recognize it, even as you maintain your authority as their father. From that they would be learning how to interact with their friends and with each other. Perhaps later on, when they begin to question on a deeper level, you can introduce some of the concepts of the Course to them. But their primary goal at that young age — and for many year to come — is to learn how to successfully function in the world as egos. They need your loving help to grow to be strong, confident individuals, who can get along in the world and are enthusiastically looking forward to careers in the world. It would not be helpful at all for them to be told that the world and they themselves are illusions and were made to attack God. Most adults can’t handle that!
Q #455: My country is currently on the path of honouring its Treaty between the indigenous people and the English and is attempting to correct its “wrong-doings.” They have been going about this by handing back land, by way of monetary funds and the expectation that every organization acknowledge the Treaty in their workplace. This is dividing our country (separatism). I work in the social service arena and one third of my colleagues are Maori. We are constantly being reminded that this is “their land” and if we are finding it difficult to adjust to change, how must it have felt for them all those years ago. Our agency is putting a huge amount of time and money into fostering this separatism as is the rest of the Country. How can one view this from a micro to a macro level, according to A Course in Miracles?
A: How you perceive this situation in terms of the content in your mind is the key to getting past your dilemma. As soon as you catch yourself perceiving in “we-they” terms, you know you have chosen the ego thought system; the same is true if you perceive victimization. Ego solutions always wind up with separation or division, both in form and content. Its version of justice is that someone must win and someone must lose.
If, in your mind, you can rise above the battleground and perceive the situation from a right- minded perspective, the differences you perceive in form would not affect your inner conviction that we are all the same as God’s Son (the content). “Nothing so blinding as perception of form” (T.22.III.6:7). Both Maoris and English share the same interests; they share the same wrong-minded thinking and the same right-minded thinking, as well as the capacity to choose between the two. You can keep yourself from drifting away from this by concentrating as much as you can on purpose, as A Course in Miracles teaches us to ask: “What is it for?” (T.17.VI.2:2) This will simplify your approach to all of your interactions during the day. You can ask yourself frequently what you want to come of all this: to continue to see conflict, division, and winners and losers; or to see a common sharing beyond the outward appearance of differences. “The principle that justice means no one can lose is crucial to this course. For miracles depend on justice. Not as it is seen through this world’s eyes, but as God knows it and as knowledge is reflected in the sight the Holy Spirit gives.…Everyone is equally entitled to His [the Holy Spirit’s] gift of healing and deliverance and peace” (T.25.IX.5:4,5,6; 7:4).
This requires some rather hard work — internally — because we are so accustomed to thinking and perceiving in terms of one-or-the-other, winners and losers. One group is up, the other is down; then it gets reversed. But there is still separation. There is no way around this unless we ask for help from the source in our minds that is beyond all perception of separation, and where justice has been returned to love (T.25.VIII).