Healing of the Atonement

“It is obvious, then, that when you are afraid, you have placed yourself in a position where you need Atonement because you have done something loveless, having willed without love. This is precisely the situation for which the Atonement was offered. The need for the remedy inspired its establishment. As long as you recognize only the need for the remedy, you will remain fearful. However, as soon as you use the remedy, you have also abolished the fear. This is how true healing occurs.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-2.IX.13:1-6)

How do we “use” the remedy of Atonement to reach our own fearlessness? It is easy to say, but sometimes difficult to do—but we clear our minds, choose love in the setting where we are afraid, and the Love heals. Just that easy. It will work if we work it.

We are after true healing in this life. Nobody receives true healing who still holds something against a brother or sister. Our ego, withering though it is, makes that impossible. We must over and over, in every situation, choose to keep a positive, kindly attitude toward those whom we feel have wronged us. This is called forgiveness, and if we recognize that we called that action to ourselves, we will realize the innocence in another. Everyone is doing the best he/she can do in every situation. Not all are ready for love, and if we are in their way, we may get burned.
Our own innocence in this process must be highlighted. We are not victims of another; we merely got in the way, choosing to get in the way when we didn’t know better how to handle the situation. Would we blame ourselves for our ignorance? I think not. We simply learn, discover, from the mistake we made what is better next time to choose. We choose again.

If there is an unhealed place in our lives, let us ask for healing today. We will not be left in disaster; our guidance will tell us how to extricate ourselves from the problems in which we find ourselves.

Atonement and Miracles

“The answer is to never perform a miracle without asking me if you should. This spares you from exhaustion. Just because miracles are expressions of love, it does not follow that they will always be effective. I am the only one who can perform miracles indiscriminately, because I am the Atonement. You have a role in the Atonement, which I will dictate to you.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.35.5:1-5)

For students of A Course in Miracles, the admonition from Jesus to ASK before attempting a miracle is well-known. But how many of us really do stop ourselves as we go about our day, asking if now is the right time to give an expression of love. Many of us don’t think of love at all in our daily grind; we just want to get through the day creditably. Yet expressions of love, as miracles, would mean so much to our brothers and sisters. And to us, for the first person that a miracle affects is the one who is charged with bringing that miracle into the world.

We aren’t to push ourselves to exhaustion, for this is a form of sacrifice, and Jesus has also asked that we not sacrifice ourselves, even to Love. He says that he did not do so, and thus it is correct to know that he would never ask us to do so either. We need Jesus’ guidance about when to act and when to rest. We need to know that we are proceeding under guidance that is just beyond what we normally think about in our daily pathway. The Holy Spirit and, later, the Christ-Self, will provide careful instruction to us.

We are never left in the dark about what to do next; we just need to ask of a Power greater than our little, finite, personal selves.
Jesus, in charge of the Atonement, does let us know what is expected of us by way of support for the Atonement. We are joining together to create a new day, a day of ultimate salvation, a day of Christ-consciousness or Awakening. We are needed. All of us.

Atonement

“. . .[I]t is clear that when you can atone by miracles, both giver and receiver are atoning. It is better to atone this way because of the mutual benefits involved. ‘Inasmuch as you do it unto the least of these my brethren’ really ends with ‘you do it unto yourself and me.’ The reason why you come before me is because I do not need miracles for my own Atonement, but I stand at the end in case you fail temporarily.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.24.2.:4-7)

When we accept the request of Jesus to go and let a miracle come through us, we are atoning for self and the other. It does not mean that we have “sinned,” for we know from A Course in Miracles that Jesus believes that our misdeeds and misthoughts are mistakes only, something that will encourage us to remedy the problem, not to be drawn to the same thought, deed, or word time and time again.

We can see that in looking to guidance for what miracles to perform, our guidance is seeing the whole picture—for us and for the one to whom we are sent. The mutual benefit that occurs is substantial. And we don’t make mistakes in this endeavor, if, that is, we depend on our guidance. Jesus is looking deep in our souls to see what miracles he can depend upon us to perform.

Jesus rectifies mistakes that we make that we cannot resolve. This is his promise: “I stand at the end in case you fail temporarily.” With a back-up like that, how can we fail, ultimately? We can’t. We have only to call in reinforcements, in this case, Jesus himself. He offers his help as a free offer. God does the same.

Dear God,

I have not seemed to be sent on a mission today. If I have missed hearing the call, please alert me to listen better. I will promise to go and do anything with You standing behind me, and Jesus at my side—a spirit I can’t see but can feel.

Miracles have come to me today. When I ask for a blessing of guidance, You are quick to see that my Answer from You arrives right on time—that is to say, immediately. I appreciate that You don’t hold my impatience against me. You like speed, too.

Thank You.

Amen.

A Warm Heart Is a Gift of Grace

“As long as you do not want to be forgiven you will not feel the gentle touch of forgiveness upon you and your world. While there is no need in truth for this forgiveness, as there is no truth to this big change that you believe you have undergone, your desire to be forgiven is a first step away from your belief that you can fix things by yourself and in so doing earn your way back into your Father’s home. Being willing to be forgiven is the precursor of atonement, the state in which you allow your errors to be corrected for you.” (ACOL, C:9.35)

Forgiveness is said in this passage actually to be unnecessary. While we believe that it is necessary, however, we will not take steps toward receiving the atonement until we have opened ourselves to this forgiveness. And we do want the atonement, which is the undoing of all that has gone before, including especially egoic consciousness. Jesus has led the way to the atonement. Would we not be foolish to refuse the forgiveness that will make every pathway toward the atonement smooth and easy?

We cannot correct our own errors. This may seem a radical statement, but if we recall how many times we have tried to correct errors, only to have the same mistake crop up again and again, we will see the validity of what Jesus is telling us. We will be gently and easily led to remove a mistake-prone inclination. But we would be egoic indeed if we thought that we were making ourselves better all the while. And we are trying to diminish the ego in ourselves, not build it up.

We cannot fix things ourselves and thereby win back the Father’s home, heaven. But we can open ourselves to change and thereby become the recipients of our inheritance, which includes heaven. Our inheritance has been waiting for us for eons. And now we are on a smooth pathway, heading for what we have wanted most in all the world. We must not jinx the matter now. We must not try to take things in our own hands, for we would surely foul it up.

Jesus will guide us gently and in an encouraging manner. He is doing just this in A Course of Love, a course that doesn’t demand a studious attitude, for its words are entering our heart. Call upon him now, today, this moment. See if a warmth doesn’t overtake you.

This warmth is the gift of grace to which we have all been heading since time began. We simply didn’t recognize it until now.

Time of Tenderness Accomplishes Atonement: the Culmination

“The time of tenderness is the time of your approach to unity. The atonement that is accomplished here is the means of opening the gate to your approach. No one has closed this gate to you, but you by your own hand pulled it shut as you departed your heavenly home, and you do not remember that your own hand can open it once again.” (ACOL, C:29.9)

The time of tenderness is an especially heart-wrenching period for those of us who are reading A Course of Love. Jesus has brought us to a point in which we see ourselves as particularly sensitive in our reactions. This sensitive point will render us able to recognize the indwelling of the Christ Self. It will tenderize our relationships to God, other people, and also ourselves. We will be ready for something more, an embodiment, a full embodiment, of the Christ in physical form. We do not have to rue this embodiment in physical form, for it has been elevated to a place very high in Jesus’s scheme of things. And forgiveness has helped to bring us to this point, the forgiveness championed so much in A Course in Miracles.

And we go on, at this point, to see where forgiveness fits:

“We speak not of forgiveness or even atonement here, for these have been thoroughly discussed earlier. You have all been through the time of tenderness, the time that preceded your giving and receiving of forgiveness, your request for and granting of atonement, your re-viewing and unlearning of the perceived lessons of your life.” (ACOL, D:Day 2.14)

“Unity” means the time that God and the self are once again One. We are no longer dependent upon the Voice for God, the Holy Spirit, to take command of our lives, through guidance that takes us home. We are home. We have a more direct approach to God than at anytime during the separation. We are living the Christ Self, a concept that is welcomed as we become the elevated Self of form.

At this point the theology becomes unified, something that we would expect when Jesus calls this time the “approach to unity.” We are a part of God, and we have welcomed Him once again, for we are not longer asleep. He does not have to think that His children sleep and need to be awakened. When we come into Christ-consciousness, we are awakened. The Unconscious is available to us. We see the merging of ourselves with the inner Christ Self in this time of the second coming of Christ.

In reading A Course of Love, we did go through a time of tenderness, and this time opened our hearts to greater understanding, full knowledge of what God would once again mean to us. We were actually “tender” during part of the reading of ACOL, and this stirring of the heart accomplished great things in us.
Now we can realize that atonement continues throughout time, until it is finally relinquished as a done deal. We do not try to hasten its ending, though sometimes we feel impatient. We rest in God’s timing.

It is enough. Once begun, the ending is sure.

And we welcome the ending, whenever God feels that we are ready for the Christ-consciousness, the elevated Self of form, that He wishes for us.

A Comparison of Forgiveness and Atonement

“Resign as your own teacher. . . .

“Looked at in another way, this process has much in common with forgiveness. The action associated with it raises it to a level similar to that of atonement. It is an undoing accompanied by a new means of doing. In the process of unlearning, both forgiveness and atonement occur.” (ACOL, C:23.27 – 28)

We learn to forgive gradually. If we followed A Course in Miracles, the theme was forgiveness. It was the means of salvation, the means of the dislodging of the ego. Now we find that atonement and forgiveness have much in common. We now have a new means of doing, a means without the ego that has dragged us down for eons. We have indeed come a long way.

The way is not complete until in atonement all false means of thinking are relinquished. Right-thinking is where we are heading, but to undo insanity, as I have pointed out earlier in this blog, is not easily overcome. Miracles help, but progress is also made slowly, undoing one habit of mind, and then turning to another—and sometimes retracing our steps when we have, once again, taken up a false way of thinking.

When we forgive, we have unlearned the idea that attack and anger are justified. We have realized that we get what we have defended against, that defense solidifies the false thinking and false behavior (from ACIM).

The ideas in this paragraph are new in A Course of Love. Jesus does not equate forgiveness and atonement in A Course in Miracles, though he does stress both as necessary to getting us out of the mess that we are in. We give up the egoic thought system, and then we move forward to replace that thought system with a new one. We move into Christ-consciousness, which gives us new revelations on a constant basis. We may be very surprised at the insights that come to us when we catch glimpses of Christ-consciousness. This miracle of glimpses prepares us, eventually, for sustainability of Christ-consciousness. We leave behind the old, we have reframed our minds (with help from the Christ Self, inwardly, and the Holy Spirit, who is also within us).

Atonement Banishes the Ego’s Thought System

“We could not begin the curriculum here because you would have been unable, without the lessons of this course, to distinguish the personal self from the ego-self. There is a danger even now in focusing upon the self of the body, as this self has been so long bound to the ego-self. Even with the ego once and finally vanquished, the patterns of the ego’s thought system remain to be undone. This is atonement. We work now to correct the errors of the past in the present, the only place where such work can be done. We work with what we have a form fully able to represent the truth and, in so doing, we bring the truth to lie and life to the truth.” (ACOL, T3:1.13)

Can we now differentiate the personal self from the ego-self? Perhaps we are not always sure. A Course in Miracles dislodged the ego, but it remains for A Course of Love to give the next step. I think too many of us didn’t know what to replace the ego with, and so A Course of Love was scribed a few years later, to answer current needs.

The patterns of the ego need to be undone, and this is the work, over time, that we are about now. It is what atonement is doing for us.
Do not be dejected to hear that atonement may take some time. We have all too often seen atonement as a one-time, one-moment thing, sort of like accepting Christ, that we would do—and then all would be well. But insanity is not dismantled in one fell swoop. Miracles speed the way to sanity, but there are still many, many tiny scraps of thought that have to be undone.

We had past errors, and these are now to be corrected in the present, which, as Jesus points out in this quotation, is the only place that past errors can be corrected. Atonement will proceed in strict order to the diligence we give our new thought system. The mind training that we received in the Workbook of A Course in Miracles will now be made complete.

Do not feel unaccomplished when you hear this, for Jesus has defined us as “The Accomplished.” We don’t have to feel that we are still wallowing in misery, committing more and more mistakes. Our minds have more sanity in them than they have had heretofore in the separation. We are undoing the separation now. That is what atonement does for us.