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16.1 Barren forms might be seen as forms that existed before the onset of the state of becoming. You are now in the final stage of the state of becoming. You now know who you are, and so now you can begin the work, or the relationship of this final stage: The stage of becoming who you are. This is the stage in which movement, being, and expression come together into the recreation of wholeness that will be expressed in the elevated Self of form.
16.2 The creation story is occurring, right now, in each of you who have reached this final stage of becoming. This is both the beginning stage and the final stage, for once begun, the story of creation moves inevitably to join with the accomplishment and wholeness that already exist in unity. Creation occurs in each of us, seemingly one at a time. Creation is our coming into our true identity, and is the extension or expression of that identity into the creation of wholeness in form.
16.3 To be barren is to be empty. Empty is the opposite of full, the opposite of wholeness. It is the perceived condition of lack. It is the belief that what animated form with life did not remain. The belief that in the passing through, a relationship did not form. But as can be easily seen, the earth is no longer a formless wasteland. Form was animated with spirit and entered a state of becoming. You were animated with spirit and you too entered a state of becoming.
16.4 You can be an expression of being and yet not express the wholeness of being. This is a description of the state of becoming. It is a perceived state. It is a state in which the unified principles of creation are seen to be taking place as separate steps. This is so because of the condition of time. Once these principles are unified, time will have ended just as time was once begun.
16.5 The unified principles of creation, once unified within each of us, bring light to each of us; they bring the ability to see, the ability to know, the ability to be, the ability to create. Through the art of thought, these abilities become who we are. God and Creation are synonymous, and you are reminded of that here as you and God become synonymous through Creation. Means and end are one. Cause and effect the same. Creation is means and end as God is means and end. Creation is cause and effect as God is cause and effect. When you move from the state of becoming to the state of being whole, you will have moved through the act of creation and you will have become a creator. You will be ready for creation of the new.
16.6 You were told within this Course that being is as love is. Here you are told that being is a principle of creation and you are not told that love is a principle of creation. Love is not a principle any more than it is an attribute. This is because love remains in eternal wholeness. Love cannot be learned, and so has stood apart from the time of learning. Being could be learned here, because it was not yet whole. Being is synonymous with identity. When your being and your identity, your Self and your awareness of Self are whole and complete, being, like love, is no longer capable of being learned, for it no longer has attributes.
16.7 Love is the spirit of the wind that animates all form. Love is spirit, is God, is creation. Love is a description of the All of All because it is whole and rests in eternal completion and wholeness. Love is the state of unity, the only relationship through which the Self and God become known to you. Love, God, Creation, are all that remained in union, in eternal completion, when form came into being.
16.8 Yet movement, being, and expression are also what is because they are the givens. Love, like God, like Creation, is the giver of the givens. Life was given through the extension and the expression of God, of Love, of Creation—through the extension of wholeness—into the seemingly separate identities of form. The way of that extension was the way of the unified principles of creation, the way of movement, being, and expression.
16.9 The difference between the way that is and what is lies in choice. While you think that you can choose to stand apart from God, apart from Love, apart from Creation, you cannot. But you can, while existing in time and form, choose to stand apart from movement, being, and expression. You can choose, in other words, to exist without allowing spirit to move you, without allowing yourself to be who you are, without allowing for self-expression. You might think that you can be simply because you exist and that as long as you exist in form you are being because you are being something. You are alive. You have form. You think and feel. You have even been told that you would cease to be without the existence of spirit, and so, you think, you must at least be. You are, after all, called a human being.
16.10 While you are becoming you are still being acted upon by creation. You are still being acted upon by creation because you are not yet whole. When you are whole, creation’s principles will be what you do and what you are rather than what is happening to you. Creation’s purpose, creation’s cause and effect is wholeness and the continuing expression of wholeness. While it was said in “A Treatise on the New”, that “Now is the time to move out of the time of becoming who you are to the time of being who you are,” it was not said that this time of becoming was completed.
16.11 And yet giving and receiving are one in truth. All of the principles of creation are in accord with this truth, and thus these truths occur in unison or in union. Becoming is movement. Movement is given and becomes movement in form. Being is given and becomes being in form. Expression is given and becomes expression in form. Since you were conceived in form, you were in movement. Since you were conceived in form, you were being. Since you were conceived in form, you were expressing. It would be impossible for these principles of creation not to be constantly occurring in everything that lives because all that lives, lives because of creation’s continuing creation.
16.12 Becoming is the movement from image to presence. It is upon you as we speak. It is not a learned state or process and it should not be seen as a cause for disappointment. Perhaps you thought you were beyond this point of becoming. And yet, as you have begun your practice of awareness, acceptance, and discovery, you have felt as if you still have a long way to go. You have often thought that even though you may be done with learning, you don’t feel quite complete, or possibly even feel as if learning has not quite been accomplished accomplished in you. This is precisely why we now discuss this state of becoming, this movement from image to presence.
16.13 There is creation going on in this becoming, the very creation promised you. This is the creation of the new you that you were told will precede the creation of the new world. This is what is meant by “as within, so without.” Only a new you can create a new world. The new you is the elevated Self of form who you are in the process of becoming. This time of becoming is the time in between your awareness of and access to Christ-consciousness or unity, and your sustainability of Christ-consciousness or unity, in form. In your time of directly experiencing the movement, being, and expression of unity, you are being who you are. At other times, you are becoming who you are.
16.14 In your time of directly experiencing the movement, being, and expression of unity, you are whole and complete, you feel no lack, no uncertainty, no doubt. You are confident in what you know. You realize fully that you are no longer a learning being and that you have no need for teachers or for guidance other than for that which comes from your own heart.
16.15 At times when you are not directly experiencing the movement, being, and expression of unity, you realize the state of becoming. To realize the state of becoming is to realize that an in-between exists between the time of learning and the time of being the elevated Self of form; that times still exist in which you are not wholly present as who you are.
16.16 When you are not wholly present as who you are, you are experiencing, still, the image or after-image of who you are. This image is like a lingering shadow. It encompasses all of your former ideas about yourself, all of the patterns of the time of learning, all of the moments in which you feel an inability to join in union, and in which you recognize still the image of your former self.
16.17 This is only an image. This is not your personal self, your ego self, or your separated self, come to reclaim you. This is why we have also described this as an after-image. This is but a photograph that remains, a copy of what you once might have thought of as your “original” self. It is but an impression, as in clay, or a reflection, as in a mirror. It is as removed from who you are as is the picture of an ancestor or a landscape that hangs on your wall separate from what it is an image of.
16.18 There may be striking beauty in this image, as there is in art of all kinds. This may be an idealized image of your former self, the image of your best self, who you may imagine now, through the grace of God, you finally are. But this may also at times be an image of a type, a construction of the subconscious, which still sees in forms and symbols. This kind of image may leave you thinking that you are “acting” as if you have changed, while even within your new actions you see archetypes of the previously known and previously experienced.
16.19 The stimulus for these after-images is gone. They are but sensations that remain, like memories of childhood. This time of becoming is a time of coming to acceptance of them as what they are—images. This time of becoming is a time of coming to acceptance that they are not real. They are no more real than the mirage of your future, another aspect of the image you have held of yourself. They are no more real than was your image of heaven, or any image you have had of heaven on earth, paradise found.
16.20 The time of becoming is a time of letting these images be without reacting to them. It is a time of coming to no longer “hold” these images in your mind and heart. It is a time of letting them first cease to affect you, and then of letting them go entirely, for without letting them go you are not fully present. Without letting them go, your presence is not wholly realized, you are not fully here, not whole, not complete. You are at times who you are, but you also are, at times, but an image of who you have perceived yourself to be.
16.21 This image, being but an image, is incapable of true joining in relationship. You must be fully present in order to join in relationship. All of your images are false images, and when you retain them you do not allow for the time of learning to be replaced with the only replacement that will sustain Christ-consciousness, the replacement of learning with sharing in unity and relationship.
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