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5.1 The Christ in you is wholly human and wholly divine. As the wholly divine, nothing is unknown. As the wholly human, everything has been forgotten. Thus we begin to relearn the known as the One who already possesses all. It is this joining of the human and divine that ushers in love’s presence, as all that caused you fear and pain falls away and you recognize again what love is. It is this joining of the human and divine that is your purpose here, the only purpose worthy of your thought.
5.2 You who have so filled your mind with senseless wanderings and thoughts that think of nothing that is real, rejoice that there is a way to end this chaos. The world you see is chaos and nothing in it, including your thoughts, are trustworthy. This is why your thoughts must be newly dedicated, dedicated to the only purpose worthy of your thought: the purpose of joining with your real Self, the Christ in you.
5.3 I said earlier, it is only through union with me that you learn, because it is only in union with me that you are your Self. Now we must expand your understanding of union and of relationship as well as your understanding of me.
5.4 Union is impossible without God. God is union. Is this not like saying God is Love? Love is impossible without union. The same is true of relationship. God creates all relationship. When you think of relationship, you think of one relationship and then another. The one you share with this friend or that, with husband or wife, with child or employer or parent. In thinking in these specific terms you lose the meaning of the holy relationship. Relationship itself is holy.
5.5 Relationship exists apart from particulars. This is what you can’t conceive of and what your heart must newly learn. All truth is generalizable because truth is not concerned with any of the specific details or forms of your world. You think relationship exists between one body and another, and while you think this is so, you will not understand relationship or union or come to recognize love as what it is.
5.6 Relationship is what exists between one thing and another. It is not one thing or another thing. It is not a third thing in terms of being a third object, but it is something separate, a third something. You realize that a relationship exists between your hand and a pencil when you go to write something down, but it is a relationship you take so completely for granted that you have forgotten that it exists. All truth lies in relationship, even one so simple as this. The pencil is not real, nor the hand that grasps it. Yet the relationship between the two is quite real. “When two or more are joined together” is not an injunction for bodies to unite. It is a statement that describes the truly real, the only reality that exists. It is the joining that is real and that causes all creation to sing a song of gladness. No one thing exists without another. Cause and effect are one. Thus, one thing cannot cause another without their being one or joined in truth.
5.7 We are beginning now to paint you a new picture, a picture of things unseen before but visible to your heart if not your eyes. Your heart knows love without a vision of it. You give it form and say, “I love this one” or “I love that,” yet you know that love exists apart from the object of your affection. Love is set apart in a frame not of this world. You hold objects up to capture it, to put a frame around love’s vision and say, “This is it.” Yet once you have it captured and hanging for all to look at and behold, you realize this is not love at all. You then begin your building of defenses, your evidence to cite to say, “Yes indeed, this is love and I have it here. It hangs upon my wall and I gaze upon it. It is mine to own and keep and cherish. As long as it is where I can look upon it, it is real to me and I am safe.”
5.8 “Ah,” you think when you find love, “now my heart is singing; now I know what love is all about.” And you attach the love you have found to the one in whom you found it and seek immediately to preserve it. There are millions of museums to love, far more than there are altars. Yet your museums cannot preserve love. You have become collectors rather than gatherers. Your fear has grown so mighty that all that would combat it is collected for safekeeping. Like the frame of love upon your wall, the collections that fill your shelves, whether they are of ideas or money or things to look at, are your desperate attempts to keep something for yourself away from all the rest. In setting love apart, you recognized it had no place here; but you went on to set yourself apart and all else that you could find to define as valuable. You build your banks as well as your museums as palaces to your love and no longer see the golden calves hiding within the palace walls.
5.9 This urge to preserve things is but your urge to leave a mark upon the world, a mark that says, “I have acquired much in my time here. These things I love are what I leave the world, what I pass down; they declare that I was here.” Again you have the right idea, yet it is so sadly displaced as to make a mockery of who you are. Love does mark your place—but in eternity, not here. What you leave behind is never real.
5.10 Love gathered together is a celebration. Love collected is but a mockery of love. This difference must be recognized and understood, as must the urge to set love apart from all the rest, for with understanding, these urges can be made to make sense. With understanding they can begin to bring sanity to an insane world.
5.11 You do not yet believe nor understand that the urges that you feel are real, and neither good nor bad. Your feelings in truth come from love, your response to them is what is guided by fear. Even feelings of destruction and violence come from love. You are not bad, and you have no feelings that can be labeled so. Yet you are misguided concerning what your feelings mean and how they would bring love to you and you to love.
5.12 It is in understanding the relationship that exists between what you feel and what you do that love’s lessons are learned. Each feeling requires that you enter into a relationship with it, for it is there you will find love. It is in every joining, every entering into, that love exists. Every joining, every entering into, is preceded by a suspension of judgment. Thus what is judged cannot be joined nor entered into where it can be understood. What is judged remains outside of you, and it is what remains outside that calls you to do what love would call you not to do. What remains outside is all that has not joined with you. What has joined with you becomes real in the joining, and what is real is only love.
5.13 Do you see the practicality of this lesson? What terror can be caused by an urge to violence that, once joined with love, becomes something else? An urge to violence may mean many things, but always lurking behind it is an overwhelming desire for peace. Peace may mean destruction of the old, and love can facilitate the rise and fall of many armies. What armies of destruction will rock the world when they are brought to love?
5.14 Within you is all the world safe, sure, and secure. No terror reigns. No nightmares rule the night. Let me give you once again the difference between what is within and what is without: Within is all that has joined with you. Without is all that you would keep separate. Within you is every relationship you have ever had with anything. Outside of you is all that you have kept apart, labeled, judged, and collected on your shelves.
5.15 This is all the two worlds are made up of. The one you see as real is the one you keep outside of yourself, making it possible to look upon it with your body’s eyes. The one you do not see and do not believe in is the one you cannot look outward to see, but is the one that nonetheless is truly real. To look inward at the real world requires another kind of vision: the vision of your heart, the vision of love, the vision of the Christ in you.
5.16 You look outside the doors of your home and, whether you see suburban streets bathed in lamplight, streets that teem with garbage and crime, or cornfields growing, you say that is the real world. It is the world you go out into in order to earn your living, receive your education, find your mate. But the home in which you stand, much like your inner world, is where you live the life that makes the most sense. It is where your values are formed, your decisions are made, your safety found. This comparison is not idly drawn. Your home is within and it is real, as real as the home you have made within the world seems to be. You can say the real world is somewhere outside yourself, as you picture the real world being beyond your doors, but saying this cannot make it so.
5.17 It is your continuing desire to have a relationship only with the world without that causes such a world to remain. This is because your definition of relationship is not one of joining. What you join with becomes real. As you take it into your Self you thereby make it real because you make it one with your real Self. This is reality. All you do not join with remains outside and is illusion, for what is not one with you does not exist.
5.18 You thus become a body moving through a world of illusion where nothing is real and nothing is happening in truth. This illusionary world is full of things you have told yourself and been instructed that you have to do, but that you do not want to do. The more your life consists of such things, the smaller your reality becomes. All that would join with you and become part of the real world of your creation remains beyond your reach.
5.19 There is nothing in your world that cannot be made holy through relationship with you, for you are holiness itself. You do not know this only because you fill your mind and leave your heart empty. Your heart becomes full only through relationship or union. A full heart can overshadow a full mind, leaving no room for senseless thoughts but only for what is truly real.
5.20 The first and only exercise for your mind within this Course has already been stated: Dedicate your thought to union. When senseless thoughts fill your mind, when resentments arise, when worry comes, repeat the thought that comes to open your heart and clear your mind: “I dedicate all thought to union.” As often as you need to replace senseless thoughts, think of this and say it to yourself not once but a hundred times a day if needed. You do not need to worry about what to replace your senseless thoughts with, as your heart will intercede by fulfilling its longing for union as soon as you have expressed your willingness to let it do so.
5.21 You do not yet understand the strength of your resistance to the union that would turn hell into heaven, insanity to peace. You do not yet understand your ability to choose that which you make real in your creation of the world. The only meaning possible for free will is this: What you choose to join with you, and what you choose to leave outside of yourself.
5.22 Your desire to be separate is the most insane desire of which you have conceived. Over all your longing for union you place this desire to be separate and alone. Your entire resistance to God is based on this. You think you have chosen to be separate from God so that you can make it on your own, and while you long to return to God and the heaven that is your home, you do not want to admit that you cannot get there on your own. You thus have made of life a test, believing that you can pass or fail through your own effort. Yet the more you struggle to do so on your own, the more you realize the futility of your efforts, even though you do not want to admit that your efforts are futile. You cling to effort as if it is the way to God, not wanting to believe all effort is in vain or that a simple solution exists. A simple solution within your world, a solution that requires no exertion on your part, is seen to be of little value. The individual, you reason, is made through all this effort and struggle and without it would not be. In this you are correct, for as you make of yourself an individual, you deny yourself your union with all others.
5.23 All your efforts to be an individual are concentrated on the life of your body. Your concentration on the life of your body is meant to keep your body separate. “Overcoming” is your catch phrase here as you struggle to overcome all the adversity and obstacles that would keep you from having what you think you want to have. This is your definition of life, and while it remains it defines the life you see as real. It presents you with a thousand choices to make, not once but many times, until you believe that your power of choice is a fantasy and that you are powerless indeed. You thus narrow what you want and go after it with single-minded determination, believing the only choice within your control is what to work hard to obtain. If you let all the world recede and concentrate on this one choice, you reason that you are bound to eventually succeed. This is the extent of your faith in your own ability to maneuver this world that you have made; and if you finally do succeed, your faith is seen as justified. The cost is not examined nor acknowledged, yet when this faith is realized the cost becomes quite real. Rather than feeling as if you have gained, feelings of loss will now be what you fight to overcome. What have you done wrong, you wonder? Why are you not satisfied with all you have achieved?
5.24 This getting what you want that drives your life is proven time and time again to not be what you want once you have achieved it. Yet you think when this occurs that you have simply chosen the wrong thing and so choose another and another, not stopping to realize that you choose among illusions. You are so surprised that you have not found happiness in what you seek! You continue living life as a test, driving yourself to follow one accomplishment with another, sure that the next one or the next will be the one to do the trick.
5.25 A trick this is indeed, for what has once failed to work will surely fail again. Stop now and give up what you think you want.
5.26 Stop now and realize your reaction to these words, the strength of your resistance. Give up what you want? This is surely what you have expected God to ask of you and what you have spent your lifetime guarding against. Why should you make this sacrifice? What then would your life be for? You want so little really. How can you be asked to give this up?
5.27 You do want little, and only when you realize this can you proceed to claiming everything that is yours.
5.28 For every joining, every union that you enter into, your real world is increased and what is left to terrify you decreased. This is the only loss that union generates, and it is a loss of what was merely illusion. As union begins to look more attractive to you, you are beginning to wonder how it comes about. There must be some secret you do not know. What is the difference, you ask, between setting a goal and achieving it and joining with something?
5.29 These do not have to be two separate things, but are made so by your choice, the choice to achieve what you will on your own. This is all the difference there is between union and separation. Separation is all you perceive on your own. Union is all that you invite me into and share with God. You cannot be alone nor without your Father, yet your invitation is necessary for your awareness of this presence. As I once was, you are both human and divine. What your human self has forgotten, your real Self retains for you, waiting only for your welcome to make it known to you once more.
5.30 God is known to you within relationships, as this is all that is real here. God cannot be seen in illusion nor known to those who fear Him. All fear is fear of relationships and thus fear of God. You can accept terror that reigns in another part of the world because you feel no relationship to it. It is only in relationship that anything becomes real. This you realize and so you strive to keep far from you all that in relationship with you would add to your discomfort and your pain. To think that any relationship can cause terror, discomfort, or pain is where you err in thinking of relationship.
5.31 You think that to come in contact with violence is to have a relationship with it. This is not so. If this were so, you would be joined to all you come in contact with and the world would be heaven indeed, as all you see became blessed by your holiness. That you move through your world without relating to it in any way is what causes your alienation from the heaven it can be.
5.32 Remember now one lovely day, for each of you has had at least one that was a shining light in a world of darkness. A day in which the sun shone on your world and you felt part of everything. Every tree and every flower welcomed you. Every drop of water seemed to refresh your soul, every breeze to carry you to heaven. Every smile seemed meant for you, and your feet hardly seemed to touch the soft ground on which you walked. This is what awaits you as you join with what you see. This awaits you as you place no judgment on the world, and in so doing join with everything and extend your holiness across a world of grief, causing it to become a world of joy.
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