Tag Archives: sinlessness

What About Love, Sinlessness, Perfection, Knowledge, and Eternal Truth? These Are the Son/Daughter of God’s Inheritance.

1 – Our Inheritance

“You may have noticed that the list of attributes of God’s teachers does not include things that are the Son of God’s inheritance. Terms like love, sinlessness, perfection, knowledge and eternal truth do not appear in this context. They would be most inappropriate here. (M16)”

Affirmation: “My inheritance as a Son (or Daughter) of God includes love, sinlessness, perfection, and like concepts.”

This appears to be a somewhat mysterious passage. Perhaps the best explanation is that these terms listed–sinlessness, perfection, etc.–are assumed rather than given to the teacher of God as a new attribute to signify his or her more lofty status. Even this description is misleading, though, because “lofty status” is an egoic concept, not one that we associate with the A Course in Miracles. Perhaps it is enough to say that everyone–student or teacher of God–has the attributes listed by birthright. This is the reason that the word “inheritance” is used in this context.

2 – Trust

This passage is part of a lengthy explanation of attributes of God’s teachers, of which “trust” is the most important. It is elsewhere explained that all of these attributes are achieved as time goes by and learning proceeds. Learning within the context of ACIM, it is believed that the teacher will acquire all of these attributes over time.

3 – Egotistical?

To acquire all of these attributes sounds daunting, and perhaps even egotistical. Yet it is anything but. No egotistical attribute is meant by any of the terms given in the passages in the surrounding pages to M16. God’s teachers learn what they need to learn to acquire these attributes, and, once learned, they will have left the ego far behind.

4 – Unlearning

“It is the function of God’s teachers to bring true learning to the world. Properly speaking it is unlearning that they bring, for that is ‘true learning’ in the world. (M16)”

5 – Questions

What does this mean? Why do we bring “unlearning” to the world, if we are following our mission?

6 – Self-Reliance

The world trains for self-reliance, believing that as we grow older, maturing, we will almost stand alone, certain in the truth of our judgments. A Course in Miracles indicates that we are not ever intended to be solitary creatures, that our relationship to our brother (and sister) is our way home, to salvation, to Awakening. This holy relationship to our brother/sister is the means that ACIM uses to save us time. We don’t have to spend long hours in contemplation, which can be tedious. We simply need to forgive our brother for what he has not done in truth, because we live in an illusion and in his/her heart of hearts, he/she is innocent of wrongdoing. (All of the ideas in this paragraph of ACIM tenets paraphrased.)

7 – Judgment

We don’t easily give up judgment. We think that it is personally insulting to give over our judgments to the one Answer, the guidance of the Holy Spirit. But do so we must, if we are to have a free will. It is only in bowing to the guidance of the Holy Spirit, who chooses for us, for what we really want, that we finally lose our imprisoned will and become free. God set the limits on our miscreation, for otherwise his creation would be flawed and fail to work. So all will return ultimately, sure finally that God’s Way is the only correct, right Way.

8 – The Secular

We may state this truth in more secular terms. That does not matter. God is God of the secular as well as the religious.

9 – Guidance

So we are bringing unlearning to this world, for the world and the ego teach amiss. Rather than self-reliance, we depend on guidance from either the Holy Spirit (as in ACIM) or the inner Christ Self (from A Course of Love). Once we taste the difference, we will not want to turn back (though we may, if we fall away from ACIM teachings). Our days will develop a flow, a smoothness, that will have us only wanting more of that smoothness.

10 – Happiness

We will finally be happy, a sustained happiness/joy that is unlike the cheap thrills that the ego offers.

11 – Forgiveness

“It is given to the teachers of God to bring the glad tidings of complete forgiveness to the world. Blessed indeed are they, for they are the bringers of salvation. (M16)”

All of us are teachers as well as students. The teacher of God teaches to himself/herself as much as to others—often more, for in teaching we truly learn.

12 – Time

Only time separates the teacher from the learner, the student. And time does not really exist, a tenet of modern physics and Einstein, and his followers, as well as A Course in Miracles.

13 – Salvation

We are to bring salvation to the world. That is one of the functions to which A Course in Miracles calls us. (The others are happiness and forgiveness.) We do not become overbearing, for not all are ready for our message. In a favorite passage of mine, we learn from the Manual that some of our brothers and sisters are ready only for a smile. We do not press, unless others express interest in knowing how and why we have changed. So to my mind a good example is one of the best things that we can present to the world.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Help me to realize that my inheritance as a Son or Daughter of God includes love, perhaps most importantly. I receive this and many other things as a birthright.

This is not egotism. I appreciate very much the gifts that are mine as one of Yours.

Amen.

Miracles Meet Our Every Need

ACIM Workbook Lesson 357 – for Friday, December 23, 2011

Affirmation:  “Truth answers every call we make to God,
        Responding first with miracles, and then
        Returning unto us to be itself.”

 

“Your Voice instructs me patiently to hear Your Word, and give as I receive.  And as I look upon Your Son today, I hear Your Voice instructing me to find the way to You, as You appointed that the way shall be:

    “Behold his sinlessness, and be you healed.  (WB483)”

Reflections:

1 – See Sinlessness / Be Healed

When we see sinlessness in our brothers and sisters, we are herein promised that we will be healed of our sickness and pain.  This is a strong statement.  Perhaps the physical element of sickness or pain may remain, but the shackles will be gone from our minds.  And is that not healing?

2 – From the Old Testament / Hebrew Bible

So often we use sickness and pain as excuses not to do our best for God.  The Old Testament is filled with examples of prophets who tried to resist the call because they did not think that they were the right person for the job.  But God knew best, and when the call was answered, they too learned that He had been with them.

3 – Let Us Be All that God Would Have Us Be

The miracle can heal even physical and emotional sickness and pain.  But the real blessing of healing is the freedom that it grants our minds.  We are not longer limited by what we perceive to be boundaries that hemmed us in.  We are freed to be creative in the fullest sense, the sense that God meant for us as his children, our Self/Christ.  This miracles happens when we perceive others as sinless, sinless because we live in an illusion.  May we recognize this truth, and soon overcome our reluctance to be all that God would have us be in this world.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would allow miracles that You prompt to restore my sense of equilibrium today.  May no pain or sickness intrude on the day that belongs, rightfully, to You.  I would choose to see the good in my brothers and sisters, and I would ask Jesus what miracles he wants me to perform that will ease their lives.  All of us have troubles from time to time, but we do not have to lie down and give up.  Your way always gives a solution, because the solution is always with the problem.  Help me to remember this when stress builds up.

If I sense that You are asking me to do something that I do not feel able or strong enough to do, help me to realize that most people have, at least those who follow a religious pathway, have found themselves in this predicament before.  I would ask You to do the leading, to show me the way, and then I would give up all illusions that I could do anything that You ask without the constant guidance of Your Guide, the Holy Spirit.

May I be flexible today, to turn on a dime as I go about my day.  This is not a straitjacket; you know what is best for me, and, if I listen, the Holy Spirit will point out the next step.  And the one after that, and after that.

Amen.

How to Have Peace / How to Have Pain

ACIM Workbook Lesson 351 – for Saturday, December 17. 2011

Affirmation:  “My sinless brother is my guide to peace.
My sinful brother is my guide to pain.
And which I choose to see I will behold.”

“I can also see my brother sinless, as Your holy Son.  And with this choice I see my sinlessness, my everlasting Comforter and Friend beside me, and my way secure and clear.  Choose, then, for me, my Father, through Your Voice.  For He alone gives judgment in Your Name.  (WB480)”

Reflections:

1 – Sinful or Sinless?

We can choose to see our brothers and sisters as sinful or as sinless.  And what we see becomes the reality that we make for ourselves.  We ourselves, as well as others, are not really sinful, though we have made errors, and these need to be corrected.  Common sense would tell us this, and errors (mistakes) do not hold the allure that sin often does.  Sin has an attracting feature, and often makes us want to commit the same or a similar sin once again, and then again indefinitely.  Error calls only for correction.  And then we have made the right decision.  (The Text says that the perception of “sin” has an attracting quality.)

2 – Sinless Brothers and Sisters

When we see our brothers and sisters as sinless, we have freed ourselves from the grip of perceived sin.  We live as Sons/Daughters, when released from the grip of perceived sin.  We get out guidance as to how to react from the Holy Spirit (called in the passage above, the “Comforter” and “Friend”).  This Comforter is the only One meant to make judgments, for He alone knows all circumstances–past, present, and future.  His alone is the infallible judgment.

3 – Listen to the Voice of the Comforter

When we listen to this Voice, we determine what to say or do next.  And we can follow His guidance only when we are flexible, when we can turn on a dime.  Then we surely see ourselves and others as making errors that require correction, but nothing else.  We do not require punishment either for ourselves or others.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I know from A Course in Miracles that we are not sinless in time, but that we are sinless in eternity–and there is no time.  This seems beyond me often, but physics alludes to such tenets.  Help me to live in eternity today, to know that my brothers and sisters have not harmed me in any way, that my Self is still as You created me.

Thank You for the Holy Spirit, the Comforter.  I thank You that I am often comforted by Him, and that sometimes this comes when worries occupy my mind.  Help me to turn all negative things, including useless anxiety about everyday concerns, over to Your Guide.  He will resolve all in His own time.  I am not to get impatient and wish for a quick resolution, because Your time–Your eternity–is different from what I experience in my daily life.  

Help me to feel peace in the midst of the chaotic circumstances that constitute our larger world.  May I do what I can to help the larger world, but may I especially do what I can in the smaller sphere of my own home and hearth and significant others.

Amen.

My Sinlessness Is All that Keeps Me Safe

ACIM Workbook Lesson 341 – for Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Affirmation:  “I can attack but my own sinlessness,
        And it is only that which keeps me safe.”

“How pure, how safe, how holy, then, are we, abiding iin Your Smile with all Your Love bestowed upon us, living one with You, in brotherhood and Fatherhood complete; in sinlessness so perfect that the Word of Sinlessness conceives us as His Son, a universe of Thought completing Him.  (WB474)”

Reflections:

1 – Theology vs. the Practical

There are some theological concepts in the prayer for today.  While we do not want to haggle over the theological, it is fascinating to contemplate the nuances of meaning in A Course in Miracles.  Keep in mind, though, that theology can distract us, and that Jesus says that it with the practical that we want to focus.  There can never be a universal theology, but a universal experience is not only possible, but also desired.  And ACIM provides some theology, for those who like this type of message, as well as abundant practical helps for living in this world.

2 – Explicating the Prayer

I want to focus on two aspects of the prayer.  First, “living one with You [God], in brotherhood and Fatherhood complete” and second, “a universe of Thought completing Him [the Self that we are all meant to rediscover].”

3 – God = Brotherhood and Fatherhood

If we are to live with God in both brotherhood and Fatherhood, then there is an inkling, in my interpretation, that we are meant to become co-creators with God.  This is the “brotherhood” aspect.  But always we are aligned with God as our Father (using the masculine gender, as ACIM does).  Our brotherhood is assured as soon as our will is no longer imprisoned by an ego run amuck.  And Awakening will follow.

4 – A Universe of Thought

The second quotation, the “universe of Thought” suggests that the universe is Thought, a Thought that our Self knows, even though the egoic self does not.  This is Idealism in philosophical terms.  ACIM does see the world as an illusion, not real, and so nothing that happens in this illusion is actually true.  We are Thoughts of God, when we are in our most exalted Self rather than the egoic self.  The “Word of Sinlessness” is God Himself (though the prayer is not specific).  And if God Himself gives us the indication that He is the Source of Sinlessness, then we might find it easier to believe that we are sinless–only having made mistakes that are theoretically correctable.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

What nuances of meaning are in today’s lesson!  Thank You.  I would ultimately know You as co-creator, regardless of how long (in earth years) this may span.  I would follow Your Guide, the Holy Spirit, as I seek to walk the pathway back to You that You indicate is possible.  I would give no credence to a separation that has not really happened.  I am still as You created me.

Be with me throughout this day, regardless of what the day may bring.  Yesterday had a few bumps in my ride, and it is likely that today will as well.  I will not let that deter me.  When stymied, I will turn to Your Guide, intended for me.  Thank You for His Answer to all perplexities that may arise.  Help me to enjoy fellowship, inwardly, with You, and fellowship, outwardly, with the others in my circle.  Thank You for always holding me close when the day fills with what appear to be crises.  Let nothing of the ego blow my adversities out of proportion.  There is absolutely nothing that You can’t handle, that You won’t make come out alright in the end.

Amen.

I Choose to See My Brother’s Sinlessness

ACIM Workbook Lesson 335 – for Thursday, December 1, 2011

Affirmation:  “I choose to see my brother’s sinlessness.”  

“What could I restore Your memory to me, except to see my brother’s sinlessness?  (WB470)”

Reflections:

1 – The Memory of God

The memory about which this passage talks is the memory that we are meant to have, the memory of God.  It is part of a prayer, and that is why the passage says “Your.”

2 – Recognize Sinlessness

We need to understand only when we recognize our brothers and sisters as sinless will we have peace.  Is this not hard to do, however?  We remember, failing to have forgiven, the attacks and anger that have been sent in our direction, and we cannot quite feel that this is coming from an innocent person, a sinless person.  To fully comprehend, we must buy into the philosophy of A Course in Miracles completely, knowing that we live in an illusory world and that nothing has ever truly hurt the real Self whom we are.

3 – Our Real Self Knows No Harm

If we make a choice to see the sinlessness of our brothers and sisters, we will be well on our way to the wholeness that will allow us to forgive any past misdeeds.  We will know that our real Self has not been harmed, and if this is the case, what do we have to hold against others?

4 – Forgive Ourselves Also

We may it difficult, as well, to forgive ourselves for similar misdeeds toward others.  Unless and until we can forgive ourselves, we are unlikely to forgive others completely (an interpretation, not stated in ACIM).  We too have not sinned, but have made mistakes (some of which can be rectified).  If we can make amends, now is the time to do so.  If it is too late to make amends, then we need to commune with God about our next step.  Hugh Prather suggested doing penance, and perhaps this too is a pathway that we might consider.

5 – The Memory of God Returns

We will find the memory of God in our minds and hearts when we have seen, truly seen, the sinlessness of our brothers and sisters.  If this seems impossible now, pray for guidance, that the difficult may be made easy.  And the difficult can be made easy.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Thank You for this day’s lesson, which gives us a simple formula for remembering You:  Forgive our brothers and sisters, and recognize sinlessness.  The real Self has never been harmed.  

May I recall this simple truth when the day turns rough.  I would walk into sunlight with You, guided there by the Holy Spirit.  

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.