“I was mistaken when I thought I lived apart from God, a separate entity that moved in isolation, unattached, and housed within a body. Now I know my life is God’s...” ACIM, Workbook page 403, Lesson 223.
Loneliness is something everyone has experienced at some point in their lives. We try to overcome this by finding a romantic partner or having a family and, possibly, a pet or becoming immersed in our work or travelling around the world, etc. But what we may not realise is that there is a very good reason why we feel lonely; it’s because we are experiencing our lives as separate individuals in a world that we have fabricated out of mental matter to take the place of our true home—Heaven. Initially, we search for experiences to help us overcome our innate feeling of loneliness. Then, we may search for meaning by turning to the scriptures or to spirituality. Finally, we become aware of our true goal—awakening from the dream of life on earth and returning home (in our awareness).
“Now I know my life is God’s, I have no other home, and I do not exist apart from Him…” W403. Understandably, this idea is very threatening to the ego because, if we do not exist apart from God, the ego has no reality. Remember that the Course frequently points out that either God is real or the ego is real; they cannot both be true as they are the exact opposite of each other. God is Love and, therefore, all that He creates is loving, eternal, unlimited and free. The ego, on the other hand, personifies fear, and everything it tries to create is limited, transient and bound by the hands of time, which is also an illusion.
We have no life apart from God because we are a Thought in the Mind of God and the fact that ideas cannot leave their source is a basic premise of ACIM. “You think with the Mind of God…Nor do the thoughts you think with the Mind of God leave your mind, because thoughts do not leave their source. Therefore, your thoughts are in the Mind of God, as you are….” W71. That passage clearly testifies to the unreality of the ego. If we remain in the Mind of God, how can anything what we experience in the world of form be real?
This brings us to the conclusion that the physical body, the lower mind, the world and everything in it are unreal but appear real because we have projected them out of our minds. If we accept that we are living in a dream world, then it follows that we haven’t strayed from God and Heaven and, therefore, we remain holy sons of God and immortal spirits as we were when He created us. That is why the prayer in Lesson 223 states: “Our Father, let us see the face of Christ instead of our mistakes. For we who are Your holy Son are sinless…” W403. It is very important for us to remember the fact that we haven’t made any mistakes or committed any sins because the whole of the ego’s thought system is based on the guilt it felt when it tried to usurp the place of God. That is why it is constantly in fear of the wrath of God, and why fear is so prevalent in the world we have made.
So, what do we do now that we are aware that we have no life but God’s? We try to rise above the world of the ego and remember our oneness with God. We try to return in our awareness to our rightful place in Heaven. Remember that the Course tells us that we are travelling a journey without distance because although it seems that Heaven is far away from us, actually we are still there but are unable to experience this. “The journey to God is merely the reawakening of the knowledge of where you are always, and what you are forever. It is a journey without distance to a goal that has never changed…” T150.
We call upon the Holy Spirit or Jesus to help us rise above the world of the ego and, strangely enough, we can use our imaginary physical body to help us in this regard. So, although we are told, “The body is a dream. Like other dreams it sometimes seems to picture happiness, but can quite suddenly revert to fear…Made to be fearful, must the body serve the purpose given it…” We are also told, “But we can change the purpose that the body will obey by changing what we think that it is for. The body is the means by which God’s Son returns to sanity. Though it was made to fence him into hell without escape, yet has the goal of Heaven been exchanged for the pursuit of hell...” W425.
Forgiveness is the means by which we change the purpose of the body. We forgive ourselves and everyone else for the mental projections we think we have created. Forgiveness also implies releasing illusions, so releasing our attachment to things in this world is also very important. And we use our bodies as a means of communication to listen to the Holy Spirit (our Higher Self) who is our link with God. We can also use our bodies to reach other people and help lead them towards the light. “Remember that the Holy Spirit interprets the body only as a means of communication. Being the Communication Link between God and His separated Sons, the Holy Spirit interprets everything you have made in the light of what He is. The ego separates through the body. The Holy Spirit reaches through it to others…” T151. So there is no need to feel bad about the body. If we have Heaven as our goal and we use the body to take others there with us, then the body has an important function. We are, in fact, using one of the ego’s tools to get rid of the ego! “The Son of God extends his hand to reach his brother, and to help him walk along the road with him. Now is the body holy. Now it serves to heal the mind that it was made to kill.” W425.
We can communicate with others in so many ways: through the use of the Internet; by writing a book; by organising a workshop; by having a chat; by giving a helping hand or merely a smile. And smile we will if we remember, “God is my life. I have no life but His.” Because now we know that all the trials and tribulations of the world are unreal and, when we have undone the ego, we will be able to truly experience our oneness with God and we will have eternal life, eternal love and eternal peace.
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