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Let us review everything we have said about Love so far. Your Creator is Love, and in your Creation were you created Love also. Love is One, encompassing all without exception. Love is the force behind Creation for It extends Itself, gives Itself, unceasingly. Love is whole and cannot be divided and still be Love. Love does not go where It is unwanted. It has no opposite in truth, but in this world there appears to be an opposite to Love, and that is fear. Love and fear are mutually exclusive; where one is, the other is not. You are always choosing between Love and fear with every thought, feeling, and action. Love is a part of Truth for It is Reality Itself. Love cannot be denied for It is everywhere, but you can choose not to see It or invite It into your mind, thus making It inaccessible. Love must be given freely to all; It cannot be reserved for special relationships and still be Love. If you would know Love, you must give up all belief and investment in attack, for attack expresses and reinforces fear, and fear drives Love from your mind.
Forgiveness is an expression of Love in this world that is like unto Love as It is in Heaven. Through the act of forgiveness is a miracle of Love extended to your brother, and in this miracle are you included, and both are blessed as One. Love cannot but forgive for It is incapable of judgement and condemnation. All stand blessed and innocent in the eyes of Love, for It sees only the perfection and Holiness of God’s Creation everywhere.
Love will set you free to be Itself, if you will let It. Love wants to return to your mind and restore joy to your life. You need only meet Love’s conditions and thus invite It, to bring about Its return. Love has been absent from your life for too long, and the pale substitution of “specialness” will never satisfy you or take Its place. Love is wholly satisfying and complete in Itself, and you will never be happy until Love fills your heart once again.
Peace follows Love, for where Love is found does peace prevail, and where peace rules the mind, has Love taken Its rightful place. You cannot have one without the other, for they are aspects of Truth, and Truth is One. The mind returned to Truth is ruled by Love, joy, and peace forever. There is no room in such a mind for fear, thoughts of guilt and sin, or belief in attack.
Where Love rules, where forgiveness reigns, is all illusion renounced, recognized as the nothingness it is. The mind given back to Truth is free, even in this world. The sorrows of the world do not weigh it down, nor does the pain and suffering inherent in separation, affect its peace and joy. The mind awake, sees through illusory appearances to the Light beyond them all, and under its forgiving gaze does all suffering disappear.
Yet does all this require your willingness, for without willingness, nothing can be done. The one gift the Holy Spirit asks of you is willingness. He takes your little willingness and adds His, until it becomes a mighty force for change. Through your willingness is all accomplished, and the mind purified and made ready for Truth’s return.
To the degree that you are willing to let your mind be corrected, it will be corrected; you will receive just as much as you are open to receive, and no more. You are the determiner of what happens in your life; nothing happens without your request. Your decisions for Truth set the pace of Truth’s return, and as you begin to choose rightly and consistently, Truth draws ever closer.
Peace will not desert you when once you establish it in your mind. There is no greater gift than peace of mind. When peace becomes the stable state of your mind, it will radiate from you to all other minds, bringing each mind closer to Truth. A peaceful mind is a quiet mind, dwelling in the stillness of Being. In this stillness is God made welcome; where He is welcome He will not hesitate to return, for it is not His Will to be separate from His Son. When your Father takes that final step, you will leave this world forever.
Whatever you do with Love will bring blessings upon you. Love cannot but bless the mind in which It lives, and everything It touches in any way is equally blessed. Whatever you give, you receive. This the law that protects giver and receiver. You must learn to give to others only what you yourself would receive. This is another way of describing the Golden Rule: Do unto others what you would have them do unto you. When you give only Love and kindness, you will receive only Love.
You must learn to see the world through loving eyes, for by your thoughts do you set the world free or reinforce its pain and suffering. You are constantly giving to your brothers through your thoughts, not just through words and actions. It is your thoughts from which words and actions arise. Mind is singular, even in this world; the thoughts of one are given to all.
Guard your thoughts carefully; remember there are no private thoughts, for every thought affects all. Let your thinking be infused with Love, arising from Truth, from that which is highest within you. Each and every thought is your gift to the world. Think only the thoughts whose effects you would receive. Let your mind itself become a source of blessing to all you see, and to all the unseen.
The mind itself is a potent instrument for change, the only one there is. All change must take place in the mind first, for all action is a result of thought and the resultant impulse or motivation. The thought system to which you subscribe gives rise to, shapes, and establishes the parameters of all action. If you want to change your experience, and thus your life, you must become fully aware of your beliefs, conscious and unconscious, and the role they play in determining perception and action.
The Holy Spirit must first help you to become aware of your mind and thinking process, that you may learn the role your thoughts play in making your world. Then He must teach you a new thought system, one that represents and points towards Truth. Little by little, you learn the difference between thoughts that come from Truth and uphold It, and thoughts that arise from illusion and reinforce fear and attack. You learn that thoughts are all of a piece; any thought that arises, supports the entire thought system of which it is a part. Thus your choice of thoughts is total and completely representative of the consequences of the thought system of which it is a part. As these lessons are learned and you become aware of the difference between Truth and illusion, and of the consequences of your choices, the motivation develops to choose truly and wisely. This cannot fail to happen when you learn to see clearly the very different results that follow your choice for Truth or illusion. No one can argue with their experience when it shows consistently and unmistakably, what follows from their decisions.
When you become committed to choosing Truth consistently, because you recognize this is what you truly want, progress can be very rapid. As you learn to recognize your errors more and more quickly, much time can be saved. To reach Truth requires not only a single-minded purpose, but also a consistent ability to discern between Truth and falsity. This requires great self-honesty and the help of the Holy Spirit.
As you progress in your learning, there is one thing you must do, and do consistently: You must refer decisions to the Holy Spirit. His sure direction leads you out of the wilderness back to the promised land. You cannot find the way yourself, for it lies beyond the reach of your mind. It is essential to recognize this fact for until you do, you will not surrender decision making to the One Whose function it is. You are not asked to turn it over to Him merely because He is better at it. The decisions you make on your “own,” are actually made in concert with the ego, and are not real decisions at all, but are rather consistent mistakes, made repeatedly, in many variations. To choose illusion cannot be a real choice, no matter how cleverly nothingness is concealed.
The Holy Spirit will lead you out of hell and back to Heaven, if you let Him. His only concern is to deliver you from fear, pain, and suffering, and restore you to freedom, Love, and joy. He directs you always to your strength and away from pain. You cannot do better than to listen to His requests, and act on them.
Pain is but illusion; it matters not what kind or the apparent source, be it sickness or emotions. Pain has no basis in fact, no cause. Pain is but the sign of mind asleep, dreaming a world of separate bodies ruled by sin and guilt. If you were to fully realize you are dreaming, that nothing here is real, you would laugh at pain and death as nothingness. Your forgetting of the role you play in making the world, allows it to seem real in your experience.
“Pain is real!” shrieks the ego, for it is itself an investment in pain. All pain starts with guilt, the cornerstone of the ego’s thought system, and fear which is its core. Without guilt, without fear, there can be no pain, for its source is gone. If you but denied all fear in your mind, pain would disappear forever. To the ego, such thinking is complete insanity, for who would deny the reality of experience as intense as pain?
Deny it you must, for illusion, like Truth, is one; and you must deny reality to all of its forms, or illusion will not leave your mind. If you would be free of pain and suffering, you must examine them carefully. Who or what experiences pain? Only the body, the symbol of limited experience, feels pain. The body has been made to be the repository for pain, and the fact that it suffers is the “proof” that pain is real.
Yet your body is neutral in itself. It cannot feel but what you ask it to feel, and it simply responds as you direct it, to fulfill the purpose given it. The mind that thinks it is a body is sick indeed, and the body will suffer the results of the mind’s mad projections. Assigned a purpose it cannot fulfill and goals that cannot be reached, is the body attacked thereby, and pain and sickness will follow.
When you realize you are not a body, is the body then free to be an instrument that serves the greater purpose. When the body has but the one purpose given it by God, to be a means of communicating Truth, its strength and health are assured, and sickness will not strike it down.
Let not fear of pain and sickness prevent you from looking at their cause. Your mind is cause; the thoughts you hold about your own reality have led to a world ruled by fear, suffering, and death. If you would be free of them, you must become aware of, and understand, the ego’s thought system and its consequences.
The reality you think you see and experience is the result of your decision. You have forgotten the decision you made long ago, and all the ones that followed, until it seems as if you have come to a world that exists apart from you, indifferent to your wishes. This is not true. Your wish gave it life, and your wishes continue its existence. There is nothing here but what you made; all things but represent your decision to be separate from your Creator and your Self.
You can change this decision to be separate at any time by choosing to return to Truth and letting the Holy Spirit, with your cooperation, undo the false ideas that make up the ego’s thought system. He will show you the thoughts, the beliefs, you have forgotten that underlie the thought system of separation. The belief in guilt and sin is like a deep, dark place in your mind where the sun never shines. No song of joy echoes through its deathlike stillness, and no kindness or mercy is ever found there.
When the love of guilt is finally renounced, Light will flood your mind and illuminate all the darkened places ruled so long by hate and fear. When guilt loses its attraction and sin is seen no more, a forgiven world will rise up before your eyes to bless and be blessed. The world seen through forgiving eyes is a world transformed, reflecting the Love and Light of God, and showing forth the Unity of Being in Which all are joined. In this world are all loved and forgiven, and no one is feared or condemned. This is the real world, illusion still, yet reflecting the Truth of Heaven, and ruled by Love and mercy.
Forgiveness is the key that unlocks the door to freedom. You cannot be free if you are lost in a dream in which you are not your Self. The human identity is like a mask you wear to play a part you have chosen a long time ago. You have forgotten the choice you made and remember only the mask, which has now become your whole identity, while your real identity is lost to you. The Self is not only lost but has now become a source of fear, for It represents the unknown and seems to threaten the self you have made.
The ego fears the Self, although it does not know It. It does recognize however, there is a threat to its existence it does not understand, against which it must defend itself. The recognition and return of the Self will indeed undo the ego, not by attacking, for Truth does not attack illusion, but simply by shining it away. Illusion brought to Truth simply disappears, dissolving back into nothingness.
While you identify with the ego and its chosen home, the body, you will continue to regard your real Self as a threat to your happiness and security. This is obviously an absurdity, as there is no happiness and security to be found as an ego. That this is not apparent to you is equally obvious, for the ego is very effective at keeping you busy pursuing an endless list of non-attainable goals and non-existent satisfactions. But pursue them you must, or so you think, and you will continue the vain attempt to find fulfillment and happiness where they cannot be found, using means that serve but to distract and exhaust. No one turns their back on this world while they see it as wholly desirable.
And yet, somewhere in time, everyone will reach a point where the futility of such a life will become apparent, where enough suffering has burdened the mind, and the necessity to find another way to live can no longer be denied. When you become ready to look again, to choose again, to open your mind to a real alternative, the Holy Spirit is waiting and will offer you all the help you will need to return to the Kingdom.
Whenever you are ready, the journey back can begin, but not before. While this world remains the focus of your hopes, satisfactions, and fulfillments, you will use all the time and energy you have to go nowhere. The question you must always ask yourself is this: What do I truly want? You need help to answer this question in a meaningful way, for you do not perceive what is in your best interest, and you do not know that your heart cries out for Truth. To return to your Father and dwell once again in joy, Unity, and Love, is your single desire. This desire lies buried and unheard amidst the activities and distractions of this world and the ego’s constant chatter.
The human heart has lost its understanding of Love, for it does not experience Love as It is. The wholeness of Love and Its all encompassing nature have been lost. It could not be otherwise, for in the separation from the Unity of Being, fear took the place of Love and gave rise to a world of appearances and experience in which Love was absent. Love is doubly barred from this world: a world based on fear must, by definition, exclude Love; and, being a world of illusion, Love cannot enter, for Love is real and is not found where illusion rules.
Yet is Love reflected everywhere: in every loving thought, in every act of forgiveness, in every act of kindness, and in all joining together for the good of all. Love cannot be totally absent even here, for It remains a part of you; the Holy Spirit keeps It safe and uses every opening in your mind to let Love shine into your life, influencing your thoughts and actions. Through Love you return to the Kingdom. Through the Love of God within you, you forgive; and through Love you are set free. Nothing else will set you free, for everything that is not Love, is not real, and illusion leads only to bondage and further suffering.
When Love begins to return to your mind, the bonds that hold you prisoner will begin to loosen, and you will again taste freedom. The attraction of Love is irresistible; Its influence on your life will steadily increase, if you welcome and remember It as often as you can. To remember Love is to look upon all with kindly, forgiving eyes, to condemn no one, and to extend help wherever it is needed. It is impossible for Love to turn away from distress, no matter what the form. Love sees everyone and everything as Itself, excluding no one from Its kindly benevolence; everywhere It looks It sees only Itself. Through Love’s compassionate gaze is all suffering healed.
When you have finally had enough of fear and hate, when attack holds no more attraction and you grow weary of constant conflict, then are you ready to invite Love back into your life. And Love will respond and return to your mind, to the exact degree you desire It and renounce all that is not Love. Remember that Love cannot come where It is not welcome, and where fear rules, Love is not. Love, like Truth, does not oppose illusion, does not struggle with opposition in any form. Love merely waits until It is invited, responding to every sincere invitation and shining away illusion by Its very Presence. Love simply is, and you are Love, now and forever. To welcome Love is to invite your Self to return and restore your mind to its rightful place in the Kingdom of God. Nothing more is asked of you, for this is all there is.
It is essential to realize that Love cannot be limited to some and withheld from others. This behavior, very common in human life, destroys Love’s meaning. It is typical of human relationships that some are considered “special,” and are invested with great importance in the life of the individual. Great emotional attachment and significance are given these relationships, and they generally play an important role in the individual’s life. Their emotional nature and importance is interpreted as proof of Love, and often enormous energy and effort are expended to maintain and preserve them. That such relationships are based on and contain Love, is not raised to question. Even the active presence of conflict and tension is interpreted as “proof” of the Love they contain.
Conflict and tension are proof of the absence of Love, not Its Presence. Where there is conflict, there is fear; and where fear is, Love is not. Special relationships, like so many human relationships, are based on a kind of bargaining where each tries to get much and give up little. Compromise is utilized as part of the process, in order to find a balance between competing desires that is stable and lasting. Domination of one by the other, manipulation through various means, and punishment inflicted upon one or the other, are not uncommon. Yet the belief that this is Love is stubbornly upheld, despite all evidence to the contrary.
If you would know Love, you must first learn what It is not, and learn to recognize Its absence. While you believe in the world’s version of love and seek to find it in forms based on its denial, you will drive Love from your mind and make Its return impossible. Love cannot be found by limiting It to a few specially chosen ones, and withholding It from all others. Love is unconditional; It is unlimited and unaffected by all conditions, situations, circumstances, and events. Love always remains Itself, Its Wholeness undimmed, encompassing everything in Heaven and on earth.
Forgiveness is the key to happiness; this cannot be overstated. Every human being desires happiness, seeks happiness above all else. The many goals, pleasures, and attainments sought by the human mind are not actually sought for their own sake. They but represent a state of mind or being that is highly valued: happiness. Yet is happiness itself not attained as a secondary result of goals or accomplishments. A temporary state of what appears to be “happiness” may accompany certain experiences, but it is not deep or lasting. A “happiness” that depends on conditions and circumstances, unstable and constantly changing as are all things of this world, is hardly worth seeking.
Happiness, as an aspect of Truth, is what you are. It does not rest on the ephemeral conditions of this world or change with the shifting sands of time. Happiness simply is. When you find the happiness that is a part of you, of your true nature, you are happy for no reason, and constantly so. Real happiness will not desert you, but can be driven from your awareness by choosing that which denies it. When you once attain real happiness, the shabby substitute offered by the ego will no longer attract you.
If you would be happy in this world, you must be forgiving. Forgiveness is an expression of Love, and without Love is happiness impossible. You cannot attain one aspect of Truth while denying Its Wholeness. Its meaning is Its Wholeness, and while denying Its meaning you will never find happiness. Forgiveness will lead you back to happiness and Love, as surely as judgement and grievances will bring fear and sorrow.
Forgiveness is your function here for it leads to the healing of all that is not Love, and through the healing it brings is the world also healed. When you are healed, you are not healed alone, for healing is the return to Wholeness, and the return of one mind to Wholeness includes all minds. The return to Wholeness is the return to happiness, and the mind that is happy is capable of real learning. Happiness facilitates the learning process, just as fear inhibits it. The Holy Spirit wants you to be a happy learner, as His goal is to return you to your Self.
Forgiveness consistently practiced and given to all without exception, including yourself, will set you free to return to the Reality of the Kingdom. You must be freed of illusion, and the core of illusion is fear. Forgiveness frees you of fear by teaching you its unreality and healing its effects. Where there is guilt, there is fear. The function of forgiveness is to heal your belief in guilt, removing it from your mind, thus allowing innocence and holiness to reclaim it. A forgiven mind is free of guilt entirely, and sees only innocence everywhere. The innocent are fearless, for what can threaten innocence or take away its peace?
Fear found a home in your mind through the belief in guilt and attack. It arose as a response to the original separation, having been invented at that time. Fear has darkened your mind ever since, casting its shadow before you as you have made the long, weary journey though time, looking vainly for something to take the place of the Home you left behind.
Through forgiveness, through the release of all guilt in the recognition you cannot attack or be attacked, fear is seen as causeless and meaningless. Forgiveness leads you to the end of all illusions by demonstrating they have no effects, and are therefore unreal. It brings you to the recognition of the world as but a dream, and who would fear the apparent happenings in a dream he knew he was dreaming?
The mistaking of the dream for reality, and the belief that it can have real effects on you, is the cause of all your suffering. It is but your dreaming you fear; yet your dream merely shows you what you want to be true. When you recognize your role as the dreamer, and change your mind about what you want to be true, the dream will change accordingly. As you cease to give it the power to affect you, you will be free.
Whenever you are tempted to attack your brother, remember who it is you are attacking. Your brother is yourself; he is a part of you. To attack him is to attack the Reality you both share. You cannot attack Reality in truth, but you think you can, and thus is your attack a denial of Truth and will banish It from your awareness. Attack will always lead to the loss of peace of mind, for each attack reinforces belief in separation, and the fear and guilt that maintain it. Peace is the absence of the intent to attack, and where peace rules the mind, is attack impossible. A truly peaceful mind has recognized the insanity of attack, no matter what the form or apparent justification.
Forgiveness recognizes that attack is impossible and has never occurred. What has never occurred can hardly be a cause for grievance. In truth, you cannot suffer loss or be affected in any way by anything outside of you. By placing the cause of what happens to you outside of yourself, you refuse to take responsibility for it.
To attribute responsibility to the world and what appears in it, and play the role of victim, is the cause of the helplessness you feel. To be a frail body, in an uncaring world filled with separate bodies and malignant forces, is indeed fearful. If that were true, you would have reason indeed to be afraid, and all your plans and defenses made to deal with the uncertainties of life, would be well justified.
My brother, your picture of yourself and the world you see is not true! You but mistake idle dreaming for the Truth. Not one thing you believe about the world is true, and never has been. There is no world apart from you, for it exists only in your mind, as does everything. Without your consent and support, the world would not exist. You are not a separate being, living in a world of many separate forms and purposes, marked by difference and varied intent. Every living thing in this world is a part of you, and all share one intent: to return to the one Truth, the one Unity of which everything is a whole part.
There is no other purpose for this world in truth than the one given it by the Holy Spirit: To use time, to use the experiences of this world, to learn what must be learned to meet the conditions of Truth, so that Truth may return to the mind that lost its way for a little while. Your only purpose here is to awaken to the Truth of what you are, and thereby help your brothers to likewise return to the Kingdom.
Your only responsibility, the one that makes return possible, is to accept the Atonement, the undoing of the false mind, for yourself. All true responsibility is included therein. To give your mind over to the Holy Spirit for the purpose of healing all that is not Love, all that is not true, will return your mind to Love. Love sees all as part of Itself, and offers help to all.
When forgiveness rules the mind, all sense of grievance, all belief in the need for attack, is renounced, and complete responsibility for all that seems to happen to you is accepted. When you realize that all happenings and events, all so-called “attacks,” are just the response to your request, it then becomes impossible to blame anybody else for anything. In the deep and consistent learning of this lesson, does all guilt disappear from your mind and from the world.
The mind free of guilt and sin is a forgiven mind. A forgiven mind naturally forgives all its brothers and the world, for only the self-accused condemn. The forgiven see no cause for grievance anywhere, as they see only the innocence of God’s Creation reflected everywhere in everything. In the freedom of total forgiveness and Love, is the mind made ready to receive God, as He takes the final step that restores you to the Kingdom of Unity forever. In that moment is the world left behind, and the full knowledge of what you are in God, in Truth, returns to your awareness, transforming it completely.
Creation is incomplete without you; your Father wills that you return to full awareness of your Oneness with Him. It is not His Will that you be not in full communication with Him. His Will waits not on time, and so is all separation over and gone. Yet in your mind does the dream still seem real, and until you awaken and take your rightful place, Heaven will call to you unceasingly and you will hear the Call.
Only time stands between where you think you are now and your return, and time is but illusion. Illusions can seem to stand between you and Truth, and can resist the Will of God in vain imaginings, but every mind will tire of dreams eventually and withdraw its belief in illusion. The edifice of separation will fall away, revealing the Truth it served to conceal but for a moment. You will rush to meet Truth as It welcomes you, and in that Union will the world of dreams disappear from your mind, never to return.
Whenever the choice you face is between Truth or illusion, and that is the only choice you ever face, be aware of what you choose and why. Just as there is never a choice other than these two, motivation will always take but one of two forms: a desire for Truth or a wish to continue living in illusion. The motivation behind your choice will always be rewarded with what it has asked for.
The desire for Truth needs no clarification as it arises from your higher mind, your right-mindedness. The wish for illusion however, needs to be seen clearly for what it is, for the confusion and lack of understanding that surround it, hide the real consequences of your choices from your awareness. No one, even in this world, consciously chooses that which leads to pain and suffering. No one deliberately makes a decision that would make peace of mind and real happiness unattainable. Yet this is exactly what you ask for every time you choose illusion over Truth.
Illusion, like Truth, is all of a piece. In dreams it may appear that you are wishing for something desirable. In time that appears to be so, yet in every choice for the things of this world, is its opposite included. This is the world of opposites; you cannot have one without the other, for this is the law that governs dreaming. Pleasure or pain, success or failure, good or bad, alternate back and forth in varying ratios, with first one then the other dominating your experience. With gain comes loss, with pleasure comes pain, and so it goes throughout your life until it ends in death where all is left behind. Every choice for illusion, is a choice for all the world of illusions holds. If you really knew you were constantly choosing death, although that result may be postponed until some unknown time in the future, you would think again.
The ego’s intention is to obscure the truth of what your choices offer you under its guidance, for the ego leads you nowhere but to your death. In the ego’s eyes it is death, and death only, that is your just reward, for it regards you as guilty and deserving only of punishment and death. In the fear and guilt of the original separation was the ego born, and it has sought only your death ever since. Its core is fear, and the foundation stone of its thought system is guilt. As long as you identify with the ego you will believe you are guilty, and through the projection of that guilt you will see a guilty and sinful world. Fear will follow you every step of the way, and happiness will not be found.
It is essential that you understand completely and without denial the inevitable results that follow when you decide for illusion. The willful ignorance of all this choice entails, enables you to focus only on the “positive” aspects and drive the rest from your awareness. The Holy Spirit will help you heal your mind of its confusion and misunderstanding, thus enabling you to learn the distinction between what is true and what is illusion, between what will set you free and what will perpetuate your bondage to fear, sorrow, and suffering. The learning of this all-important lesson provides you with the understanding from which to make the only choice that can be made.
With every choice you are offered God or the ego, Truth or illusion, Life or death, Love or fear, freedom or bondage, peace or conflict, joy or sorrow, healing or suffering, innocence or guilt. These are but different ways to say the same thing. Always only two choices, and every one you make gives you all of Truth or all of illusion. And you will rejoice or suffer according to the decision you make, for by your choice is your life determined.
You are responsible for your life in every detail. Nothing comes to you uninvited or unsought, and every wish is fulfilled. When you understand and accept this fact, taking full responsibility for everything that happens in your life, good or bad, you are on the road to freedom. Freedom is impossible without responsibility, for who can be free without recognizing the bonds that hold him prisoner are of his own making? Through this recognition is the way clear to loose the chains that bind, and in so doing is freedom restored.
The secret of salvation is simply this: I am doing it to myself. This is true no matter what seems to happen in the dream, for you are the dreamer of the dream. Forget that you are dreaming, and you seem to be cast adrift in a hostile and uncaring world, at the mercy of forces beyond your control. Remember the part you play in making the dream, and you are free of the need to react and defend and attack. When all projection is laid aside and judgement relinquished, there is nothing left to do but accept and forgive everyone and everything, and in that are you free at last.
What is the story of your life really about? What is actually happening behind the parade of seeming events that appears to be happening to you and all around you? What does it all mean, and why do things and people seem to change constantly, leaving no hope of stability or certainty? This world was made as a place of chaos where fear reigns and God is absent. This was its purpose, and is its purpose still if you would have it so.
There is no inherent meaning or purpose in chaos, unless you assign it. Identified as the ego, you have given the world the purpose of proving separation from God is real; all your efforts are directed at maintaining this belief and the experience that arises from it. Included in this purpose is the ego’s plan for all living things, which is death. Is this what you really want?
All the good things, the exciting experiences, the world seems to offer but mask the fact that it is a place of impermanence, where all life ends in death. For a little while you may pursue various pleasures and seek goals that promise happiness and fulfillment, but you will not find true happiness here. A world of chaos and uncertainty, of shifting sands and vanishing hopes, offers only fleeting amusements and distractions at best. And always at the end of the journey, death waits, making a mockery of all that has gone before.
Do not invest your hope where there is none. Do not accept the ego’s purpose for the world as your own. Do not accept meaninglessness and death as the context of your life. It is but a choice you made long ago, and forgetting the role you played in making the world, you have seemed to be its unwilling victim ever since. It need not be so. Only this choice made so long ago, seems to keep this picture alive in your mind. You can choose again, and you must, if you would be free.
The Holy Spirit has another purpose for the world entirely. He overlooks the chaos and all the activities of the ego, for He knows that nothing here makes any sense, and what is meaningless is not real. Yet He recognizes the dream is real to the dreamer. He takes you where you are and gently leads you on the path of learning, teaching you what is false and what is true.
The real purpose of the world is to be the place where God’s Son has come for a little while to remember the Truth of what He is. Then He is gone, to be seen no more, leaving behind miracles of Love to bless his brothers still in bondage, as he was blessed. You must accept the Holy Spirit’s purpose for the world if you would leave it, for you need His help to escape the trap you have set for yourself.
Surrounded by false ideas of yourself, and believing them real, you cannot find your way out of your dilemma. Believing that you are what you are not, you cannot find the Truth. Illusion will never find Truth no matter where it looks. The mind that thinks itself a body must be gently shown its error, that it may cease its false identification and learn what it is in Truth. Through emptying the mind of the false, you make room for Truth, and through the learning process you undertake with the Holy Spirit’s guidance, you learn to meet the conditions for Truth’s return.
Just as soon as you are ready, the Self will take you unto Itself, and all your problems will vanish. Problems belong to the world of dreams; when Reality has replaced dreaming, problems fade into nothingness. As the Self, you have no problems, for problems belong to the world of bodies, and the Self is not a body. As the Self, you are beyond birth and death, for you are Life Itself, created by God, and Life is eternal. Never has the Self known death.
When the time is right, everything that needs to happen will happen, if you allow it. What is necessary, what is truly needed in your life, is always waiting for your willingness to receive it. Without willingness, nothing can be given you. At any moment everything can be given, everything that you seem to lack, if you are sufficiently receptive. But you must be willing to meet the conditions that make receiving possible.
To receive that which is real is the only possibility. Because you are so busy, striving for fantasies that exist but in imagination, what is real is not wanted or recognized. To dedicate your life and mind to illusion is to refuse Reality Itself, for you can choose only one. While you value illusion, Reality will escape you, until you tire of chasing phantoms and begin to consider an alternative. When that time comes is determined by you. The time of readiness waits only for your decision to let it be now; it is always now that Spirit waits to meet you, and turn your mind back towards Truth.
The Father and I are One, and in this fact is my salvation assured. God is my Source. He has created me as I am, and I remain as God created me. This is fact and remains so, no matter how long I lose myself in dreams or what seems to happen in the dream.
Illusions cannot affect Reality in any way but they can take Its place in your awareness, if this be your choice. When illusions are preferred over Truth, does the Truth become fearful to the mind lost in dreams, and so is It twice denied. This fear must be undone, its grip on your mind loosened, before Truth can return. Whatever you may think about Truth, is false, for It cannot be understood while you remain in ignorance.
All ignorance of Truth is willful ignorance, for nothing outside of you can make you lose the knowledge of what you are. A choice, a hasty decision made in fear a long time ago to be what you are not, has deprived you of the awareness of your Creator and your Self. That choice has faded from memory, and you have been lost so long in dreams that it is illusion that seems real, and Reality but imagination. A body is your chosen home; its senses are the witnesses you trust to prove the world real.
The body’s senses are the means the ego has chosen to secure your allegiance to its thought system of separation. And certain it is the senses will show you a picture of many different forms, each separate and complete in itself. Each form has a separate life and circumstances, and no meaningful relationship with any other, unless it be a special one constructed in isolation and exclusion.
The “special” love relationship is the ego’s chosen substitute for the relationship with God. Your relationship with your Creator is the only relationship. All others are a part of that, if they be true. A relationship built on love that excludes, on fulfillment of needs ascribed by the ego, is not an expression of Love, nor will you find real fulfillment there. Only in your relationship with your Heavenly Father, will you find the true fulfillment and completion you desire and need. Through your Oneness with Him are you joined as One with all Creation. In this Unity is all the Love there is or ever will be.
When the need for Truth, the recognition of the only need you have, begins to dawn on your mind, you will be moved to turn in Its direction. Until this happens, you will be moving away from Truth, for these are the only two directions possible in this world. The many roads the world seems to offer you, however different they may appear, all lead but in one direction. And death waits at the end of them all, returning your body to the dust from which it came.
Whatever you do or think, will bring you closer to Truth or lead you away from It. It cannot be otherwise, for the mind is choosing Truth or illusion with everything it does. Even though you are not aware of the consequences of your thoughts and actions, you will still receive the result, for the law that governs choosing cannot be evaded. This is why it is so important to be aware of what you are deciding for, as each choice is both a decision for one, and a decision against the other. Intelligent choosing requires that you be aware of the inevitable and inescapable result of each choice. What you choose is what you get, whether the choice be conscious or unconscious, and its consequences recognized or unrecognized.
The mind of separation believes it can make partial choices, that it can choose one illusion and not others. It believes pleasure can be sought and pain avoided, that guilt can be seen in one and not another. It can attack and not be affected. My brother, this is not so. Illusion is one, despite its appearing in many guises. To choose even one illusion you would have be real, is to be subject to all. To seek pleasure is to ask for pain. See a brother as guilty, and you stand condemned alongside him. Attack your brother, and you will not escape the effects of your intent to harm. Illusion must be rejected entirely if you would know Truth.
Let go all ideas of what you should do or how you should be. You know nothing. The recognition of this fact prepares the way for the return of wisdom. Wisdom consists of knowing the difference between Truth and illusion, between Reality and dreams. Wisdom will always recognize and choose Truth, for it knows only what is true and rejects all falsity.
To attain wisdom, the mind must reach a state of clarity and emptiness. This requires a fundamental undoing of all worldly thoughts, of all belief in and attachment to the things of this world and to the world itself. Desire must be purified, and all meaningless and conflicting desires replaced with a single desire: the desire for God, the desire for Truth. Truth has never left your mind, for It abides in the part of your mind that resides in Wholeness, in eternal Unity. However, you have lost the awareness of Truth, replacing It with a dream of separation.
Wisdom is not of the ego. It arises not from the belief in separation nor does it recognize fear. It looks past fear entirely, knowing it as false, an invention of a mind that lost its way for a little while. Wisdom rests on Truth, being the recognition only Truth is true, and what is not true is false. There is nothing illuminated understanding cannot do, for the power of Truth is in it.
What is the price of wisdom, of real understanding? The giving up of all illusion, of all fear, pain, suffering, and loss, is the condition required. When Love rules your heart and wisdom directs your mind, you are free of this world and all its misery and empty promises. Love is ever free, and wisdom protects this freedom through right understanding of Love’s nature. When Love is what you want and nothing else, Its all encompassing nature will take you unto Itself, and you will return to your Father. Through Oneness with God and all of Creation, you are forever safe and free.
Nothing can liberate your mind but your own decision to be free. This is the necessary condition for freedom to be given you. The decision to be a bodily identity is the decision to be limited in time and space, separate from all, and subject to death. Clearly, this is the opposite of freedom. A body can never be free, for it is itself the denial of freedom and the symbol of limitation. True freedom is freedom from all limits, and this is possible only for Mind.
Mind Itself is formless, all pervading, unconditional, unlimited, and cannot be bound in any way. As Mind, the Christ Mind, you are freedom itself, as incapable of being limited as your Creator. Only your identification with the ego and its chosen home, the body, can deny you the Truth of what you are. This denial is but a dream, for you cannot change what God created as perfect and unbound. Yet can you dream that you have done so, and through your belief is the power given to the illusions you have made to affect you and thus “prove” their reality.
When you tire of this play of shadows, of the suffering and loss that represent it, the willingness will arise in your mind to look elsewhere, to seek to be free and happy again. The Holy Spirit responds to the least inclination towards Truth, and will give you as much help as you are open to receive. More than this He cannot give, for the pace at which your awakening proceeds is determined by you. You chose to lose yourself in dreams, to maintain the dream, to defend it from the intrusion of Truth. And it is your choice to turn again towards Truth, to meet the conditions for Its return, and to welcome Truth back into your mind.
Whenever the Truth is revealed to you, you must first accept It. Without acceptance, there is no recognition. To accept Truth is to be an open mind, calm and receptive, empty of preconceptions and old ideas. Abiding in the present, with past and future forgotten, the mind becomes tranquil and empty. Such a mind is open to the new and unexpected.
Truth cannot be captured by thought; thought can at best point in Its direction or represent It, but Reality Itself is beyond the reach of conceptual mind. Truth is always new yet eternally unchanging, always unexpected yet completely familiar. Truth cannot be captured by the mind or limited in any way. Only the mind that is empty and deep can be absorbed by Truth, for it has fulfilled the necessary conditions. Truth will come of Itself when you are ready to receive It; It waits only on your invitation, for only your unwillingness has driven It from your awareness.
Your mind is part of Truth and cannot lose what it is in essence. Yet you can, and have, attempted to reject what you are, substituting illusion in its place. In truth this cannot be, but in dreams can you believe you are something else, and through this belief does Truth vanish from your awareness. Yet is your Reality held safe for you by the Holy Spirit, Who waits only for the moment He can restore your mind to Truth. When that day comes you will rejoice, and all of Heaven will join in celebrating the return of God’s Holy Son.
Fear is the great crippler; it acts to literally cripple the mind of God’s Son and prevents Him from flying. The flight of a bird is nothing compared to the soaring freedom of the mind that knows God. This freedom was lost to you long ago, and you have become accustomed to your earth-bound state. To trudge wearily along, weighed down by troubles and cares, seems to be your natural condition for this is all you know.
Fear in all its forms makes your mind so heavy it has forgotten how to fly. Nothing can stop you from being what you are but your decision to be what you are not. A body, a thing apart, cannot fly, for it was made to tether the mind to illusion and eclipse its freedom. The mind that believes it is a body, has voluntarily given up its freedom. The flight of the Soul is unstoppable, but you can elect to erase Its memory from your mind.
Freedom is impossible when the mind is ruled by fear. Fear reduces the mind to a frightened thing, huddling behind its defenses, thick walls erected to keep the world at bay. Fear is the great enemy, the only enemy, if enemy there be. Its only purpose is to keep the mind in chains, prisoner to its belief in separation, threat, and attack. Without fear there is no imprisonment, for without fear there is only Love. Love is the great liberator from the belief in fear, for in Its Presence, fear cannot remain. Like all illusions, fear is simply the darkness where Light is absent. When the Light of Love illuminates the darkness, it disappears, for it has no reality in its own right.
When fear dominates the mind, happiness cannot be found. The many worldly pursuits by which you seek to attain happiness are doomed to fail, for the motive that drives the seeking is escape from fear. The state of happiness is not an escape from fear, it is the healing of fear. Happiness is simply the natural condition of your mind. You cannot find it through seeking and goal-oriented activity. To be truly happy is to be happy for no reason.
Fear is the characteristic of the ego, the belief in separation. To the ego, the world is a threatening place where every hand is raised against it and attack is imminent. The ego’s strategy is to attack first, and this is done in various ways. Because you attack, you will believe that vengeance will hunt you down, and never will you be free of fear. Never will you feel safe if you identify with the ego, for safety is not found through attack, and defenses are but an admission of weakness and vulnerability that reinforce the fear that underlies them.
Only your fear weakens you and makes you vulnerable to attack, for fear is the result of belief in the reality of separation, and a part of this belief is the identification with a body. Only bodies can attack and be attacked; to believe yourself to be a body is to invite weakness and limitation. To be weak is to be vulnerable, and you will not escape fear and its consequences, nor will you relinquish the belief in attack and defense.
Fear is present in your mind in many forms, some of which you may not recognize. It is very important for you to become very aware of the fear in your mind and its effect on your thinking. Too often is fear the motivation behind thought and action. The various egoic defense mechanisms, of which there are many, are all expressions of fear in action.
Without fear, there is no need to attack or defend. Without fear, are all defenses seen as meaningless and cast aside. Freedom is freedom from fear, for the only limitations imposed on freedom arise from fear. When all fear in your mind is healed, when all fearful thoughts have been brought to awareness and corrected, only Love will remain. And the flowering of this Love is freedom.
When Love is all you know, your life will be transformed and you will live in the Light of Heaven, though your feet still walk the earth. Your function is to be Love, to bring Love to this loveless place. The world was made to be a place where Love could not enter but in reduced or distorted form. Fear was invented to take Love’s place as motivator, while pain and suffering replaced happiness. Happiness then became something that must be sought, found, earned, and is seen as the result of certain conditions, attainments, or achievements. As all circumstances of this life are fundamentally unstable and subject to constant change, lasting happiness is impossible here, and the mind must keep itself constantly busy to hide this fact.
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