Tag Archives: errors

Errors vs. Sin

A Course in Miracles affirms, “The ego’s whole continuance depends on its belief you cannot learn this course.” (T-22.III.2:1) Of course! The heart of the assertion is the distinction between “errors” and “sin.” Errors are made for correction, which we will learn to do by learning this Course. Sin can, in Christian theology, only be forgiven and, perhaps, imperfectly, as we humans are prone to do. The Course asserts that it is doubly hard to forgive sin that has been in our minds made “real.” The better way is not to focus on the “sin,” or mistake, from the beginning, but to overlook it as the illusion that it is.

Sin is likened to solid granite (T-22.III.3:4), which, when observed, is seen as an impenetrable barrier. But this is what only the body’s eyes see a form that is not reality at all. It takes the application of reason to truly see, to have vision. The body’s eyes, physically and metaphorically, can never see past illusory form.

It is necessary for us to realize that the ego is a false, illusory self, made by ourselves in insanity, and offering nothing that in our right minds we would really want. God had to protect His universe, and so He allowed our miscreations to live on in illusion only–not in reality. Only in reality can we share the Mind that is His, and thus know reality as it is really meant to be.

Jesus: “I Can Erase All Misperceptions from Your Mind if You will Bring It under My Guidance.”

“I cannot unite your will with God’s for you, but I can erase all misperceptions from your mind if you will bring it under my guidance. (T43)”

Affirmation: “I can erase all misperceptions from your mind.”

Reflections:

1 – Jesus’s Place

Jesus does not take away the power of our minds. We retain in full control, but it is a control that we are bade willingly to relinquish to the Holy Spirit. How do we do this? We listen to a knowing, an intuition of how to live our days. Thus Jesus cautions that we cannot ask him to take over our minds. The desire that Jesus take over our minds is most often seen in which we ask him to remove fear from our minds. But he tells us that we made fear, and he would be tampering with cause and effect if he interfered with that which we have made. Fear can be mastered, but by our own minds, in touch with the Holy Spirit. We get quiet, go within, and feel the presence of God that quells all apprehensions. This is the best way to move toward love, by relinquishing our masochistic attachment to fear and anxiety.

2 – Erase Misperceptions

What Jesus can do, though, as he tells us in this passage, is to “erase all misperceptions” from our minds. We are willingly putting our minds under his guidance. We have, at this early point in the Text of A Course in Miracles, not yet received an understanding of the place of the Holy Spirit in our salvation. So Jesus speaks to us personally, as part of the Holy Trinity, and bids us place our minds in his care. What better thing might we do? How better might we reach salvation?

3 – Retain Power but Listen to Guidance

Retaining the power of our minds, but listening to guidance, is not contradictory. We willingly relinquish all that does not matter, choosing to keep only the real and the true. Jesus guides this activity when he is shown a willing mind and spirit.

4 – Our Minds

We need to realize that we don’t want misperceptions. And we can be protected from them by following guidance and placing our minds under the protection of Jesus. He takes on a very personal meaning at this point. And not everyone will accept this personal protection of Jesus. He will do as much for us as we will allow, as long as his actions do not interfere with the law of cause and effect. We must take responsibility for our anxieties and fears, and he will help us to overcome. But he will not take our power away from us. Never will he do so. And we are the better for it. Our minds are very powerful, and we never cease thinking, except in deepest meditation. Our minds are very busy, even into dreams in sleep. Our minds never cease creating. And so the power is very great.

5 – Erase Misperceptions

What a glorious promise this is! To erase misperceptions, and with this comes the erasure, or the withering away, of the ego. We want to see clearly, and we can do so, but we need help. And that help is now forthcoming.

Prayer:

Dear Father,

May I enthusiastically and willingly place my mind under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Then misperceptions fall away, and I live in a much happier world.

Thank you for Jesus’s guidance. He will help us to eliminate misperceptions if we are open to his guidance.

Amen.

A Miracle Worker? How Possible?

“Atonement means correction, or the undoing of errors.  When this has been accomplished, the teacher of God becomes a miracle worker by definition.  (M-18.4)”

Affirmation:  “Correct me today.”

Reflections:

1 – Atonement

This is what we need, all of us:  Atonement.  We need to have our errors undone, all corrected.  If this seems a long way off, then let us be patient.  Jesus says that for everyone to return to God, to undo the separation (believed in but an illusion), it may take millions of years (from the Text).  But we do not have to be disheartened by this analysis.

2 – Do Not Be Disheartened

Why not disheartened?  We are not alone.  God and His Communicator, the Holy Spirit, are with us constantly.  Indeed, we are a part of God.  We do not normally realize this, because we focus too much on the errors that our own “creation,” the ego, leads us to ake.  And Jesus will be with us when we have made one “unequivocal call” to him (a quotation from ACIM).

3 – Intuition Brings Our Help

Do we believe all this?  Perhaps not yet.  But give yourself time.  The truth will become manifest as we see our help come to us, intuitively, just as we need it.  Don’t second guess this truth.  Don’t be so quick to put up roadblocks.  If the intuition is honed by love, then it is likely to be genuine.

4 – Ego Makes Power Plays

“Intuitions” of the ego are usually power plays, and we do not want or need that.  Is the ego puffed up by this indication of what to do next?  Walk slowly, and think again about the best course of action.

5 – We Will Find Out Way Home

We will all learn eventually.  We will all find our way home.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would, in my own small circle of friends and acquaintances, become a miracle worker.  But I would listen for Jesus’s nod of what to do or say.  Only his guidance is necessary or desirable.  Anything else is misguided, because the ego gets involved, very involved.

Be with me today to find the Atonement anew.  Thank You for the times in my life when You have felt especially close to me, giving me Your advice.  Let me reach deep within me today to find You.  And let my manmade ego not intrude with unwelcome advice.

Help us to follow You today.  Help us to know how to help, how to heal.  If we need healing, may we find healing today.  And the same for all of our brothers and sisters.  May we attract that which You desire for us, knowing inwardly that health is Your choice for us.  Let us not intrude with ideas of illness.

Amen

Errors = Lacks of Love

“The miracle joins in the Atonement by placing the mind in the service of the Holy Spirit.  This establishes the proper function of the mind and corrects its errors, which are merely lacks of love.  (T11)”

Affirmation:  “May I love fully today.”

Reflections:

1 – Definition of Errors

Our errors are merely lacks of love, but lacks that are healed by the Holy Spirit.  Virtually all of us in this world have dark places that indicate lack of love.  But the good news is that we can ask for guidance from the Holy Spirit, and He will lead us into the right pathway to leave these errors behind.  Our mind can be healed by relinquishing errors that are merely “lacks of love.”  This is concept that is easy to understand, and, if we reflect a bit, anyone (not necessarily a student/teacher of ACIM) would see the truth in the equation:  “errors = lacks of love.”

2 – Miracles and the Atonement

Miracles and the Atonement are given an equal place in this passage for effecting this change in the mind.  And Jesus is in charge of both.  This is another place within ACIM that we are asked to see Jesus in a particular light as our leader.  We have chosen that he be our leader by reading and studying his words.  This is akin to choosing Jesus as our “personal Savior” (a tenet of traditional Christianity).

3 – Jesus’s Role

Remember that he is always there for us when we ask.  He will lead the way out, in the service of the Holy Spirit.  Surely all of us recognize that we would remedy these lacks of love.  When we do so, the errors that caused the lacks of love are gone forever.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I ask for the help of Jesus today.  I do not understand how he can answer all of our calls, but I think he implies this in ACIM, and I would choose to believe, even in the face of the incomprehensible nature of this.  I know that there are physical laws that our scientists do not yet know, as there have always been.

Be with me as I seek to do the miracles that I seem guided to do.  May I not let my ego intrude and lead me astray.  And may I never seek to do something on my own volition.  Be with me to help be discern correctly.

Help this to be a good day, for others and myself.   May we follow Your pathway exclusively.  Thank You for Your felt presence.

Amen.

Temptation

“‘Lead us not into temptation’ means ‘Recognize your errors and choose to abandon them by following my guidance.’  (T9)”

Affirmation:  “I would abandon my errors today.”

 

Reflections:

1 – Jesus’s Words

This is Jesus’s interpretation, for students/teachers of A Course in Miracles, of a biblical statement attributed to him.  Perhaps the interpretation has always been in place, but now the world is ready to hear it through ACIM.  We may see herein that the temptation to go against the guidance of Jesus, or the guidance of the Holy Spirit, is a choice that will slow us down.  We need to be flexible, to find the affirmations that will keep us from rebelliously avoiding guidance because we are still so strong-willed.  My personal favorite, which is very secular, is simply, “Be flexible.”  This talks to my ego in a way that undoes it, and it uses secular language that will not cause temptation to overcome me.

2 – We Do Not Sin in Eternity / We Make Mistakes in Time

Elsewhere the Course makes clear that we do not sin in eternity (we are still innocent, because we are caught in illusions), but we do make mistakes.  And if we recognize mistakes, we will move quickly to correct them.  Calling a mistake a “sin,” though, is highly attracting, in a perverse sort of way.  We will sometimes choose to sin again and again; changing the concept to that of a “mistake” eliminates the attraction at its core.  Who would repeat mistakes that, with Jesus’s guidance, are very easily corrected?  At one point in ACIM, we are told that we have “sinned” in time, but that time does not really exist.  Eternity is on the valid concept that is close to time, but not the same.

3 – How Do We Recognize Our Errors?

We need to recognize when we have made errors, though.  This is not always easy, because our conscience may have damaged areas in it.  We may be led astray, having rationalized poor thinking and behavior in ourselves many times previously.  This is the time to return to A Course in Miracles, and to ask humbly for guidance to see anew.  This guidance will lead us along more positive lines, and we will leave behind the erroneous thoughts and misdeeds of the past.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Sometimes when my emotions are especially strong, I am sure that I have great difficulty in discerning Your guidance.  My emotions, sometimes ruled by my ego, interfere with my intuition, my discerning of Your way.

I would not have it thus today.  I would stop, calm myself, and then ask quietly and peacefully, “What would You have me do?”  I pray that this is enough.  Please guide me even when my thinking is muddled by overwrought emotions.  When stress is heavy, we often cannot discern in peace.  Be with me especially at such times.  I know that my good intentions are not enough, but I pray that when times are hard, You will always remember me–even when I forget You.

Thank You.

Amen.

May I Understand My Sinlessness

ACIM Workbook Lesson 318 – for Monday, November 14, 2011

Affirmation:  “In me salvation’s means and end are one.”

“I am the means by which God’s Son is saved, because salvation’s purpose is to find the sinlessness that God has placed in me.  I was created as the thing I seek.  (WB459)”

Reflections:

1 – Mistakes – In Eternity, No “Sin”

Here is the answer for those of us who find it difficult to believe–given our many mistakes–that we are really innocent, sinless.  We were created sinless, and it is only in illusion that we have left that glorious state.  And to leave something in illusion–in dreams–is not really to leave sinlessness at all.  “I was created as the thing I seek”:  Yes!  We have spent eons chasing our tails to find the very thing that we are, deep within.  It is only up to us to access that deepest place, where God is, to realize that we are One with Him, and that all is well.  We do not have to atone for anything.

2 – Making Amends for Mistakes

We do have to make amends for the wrongs that we have perpetrated, if this is reasonably possible.  If reaching out to someone we have wronged would make the matter worse, then we would do well to commune with God, express our amends to the Holy Spirit, and simply walk a green earth again.  If reaching out to someone we have wronged would help to right the wrong, then we should definitely reach out.  Only our deep communion with God and our guidance from the Holy Spirit can tell us what is right to say and do.

3 – Salvation

We in our essence encompass the means and the end of salvation.  We will know this when we have forgiven ourselves for our misdeeds.  Forgiving ourselves is easier said than done, because the ego (still a force, though weakened, in many of us) would have us see ourselves as guilty.  The ego’s life depends upon the guilt that it can engender in us.  If we thrust aside the guilt, which is actually the only hell that there is, we would be a good position to live peacefully, without the turmoil and agitation that guilt always causes us to feel.

4 – Salvation’s Purpose

In this passage, we are told that salvation’s very “purpose” is to “find the sinlessness that God has placed in me.”  To carry this statement to its logical conclusion would mean, I think, that we will find that God is ready to awaken us when we, in our depths, have discovered the sinlessness with which we were created.  We cannot be even a little bit in hell to find this sinlessness.  We cannot feel even a little bit of guilt.  Of course, to say this is to invite the ego to have a field day, because the ego will assure us that without guilt, we will say and do all manner of despicable things.  But will we really?  Perhaps this possibility is just what keeps Awakening from us.  Perhaps here we are approaching some of the secrets of salvation.  If we are truly ready to accept our sinlessness and to relinquish any of our thoughts or actions that would normally cause guilt, perhaps God can awaken us.  Perhaps finally we are ready.  (This final paragraph is filled with my own interpretations and is not based, precisely, on ACIM tenets.)

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would always seek to make amends for the errors that I have perpetrated, but I would not lash myself, metaphorically, calling them “sins.”  I have sinned in time, but not in eternity, where I remain as You created me.  May I get some inkling of what this means today.

I would walk farther along the pathway to salvation today.  I know that Awakening stands at the end, and I ask for You to consider my petition for Awakening.  I am content, though, to wait on Your timing, knowing that it will be the perfect time when You choose it.

Help me to forgive my brothers and sisters for the mistakes that they have made in attacking me or in getting angry with my shortcomings and misunderstandings.  May all of us live, together, in peace today.  And may You allow me to feel Your presence as I walk throughout the day.

Amen.