ACIM Chapter 6. I. The Message of the Crucifixion, P 8.9

ACIM I. The Message of the Crucifixion, P 8, 9. I am sorry when my brothers do not share my decision to hear only one Voice, because it weakens them as teachers and as learners.

ACIM Chapter 6. I. The Message of the Crucifixion, P 8.9

ACIM Chapter 6. I. The Message of the Crucifixion, P 8.9

I. The Message of the Crucifixion, P 8

8 I am sorry when my brothers do not share my decision to hear only one Voice, because it weakens them as teachers and as learners. Yet I know they cannot really betray themselves or me, and that it is still on them that I must build my church. There is no choice in this, because only you can be the foundation of God’s church. A church is where an altar is, and the presence of the altar is what makes the church holy. A church that does not inspire love has a hidden altar that is not serving the purpose for which God intended it. I must found His church on you, because those who accept me as a model are literally my disciples. Disciples are followers, and if the model they follow has chosen to save them pain in all respects, they are unwise not to follow him.

We are the foundation of God’s church.

This is in reference to the Bible verse in which Jesus told Peter he was the rock on which he would build his church. In the Course he is telling us that it is still on us he must build his church. He goes on to tell us that a church is where the altar is, that it is the altar that makes it holy. I love this passage because it reminds me that my passing doubts and many mistakes cannot change this. I am his disciple because I follow him. At least to the best of my ability, I follow him. I do what Jesus did so that I can awaken, too, and then help others awaken.

And why wouldn’t I? I would be foolish to have his help and his Course at my fingertips and not use it. He is leading me out of pain and suffering. There has been so much proof in my life that all I need to do is follow his lead, and I become happier and more peaceful than I could have imagined. And while I enjoy a happier and more peaceful life story, my actual goal is to awaken from the story. I do this by learning not to identify with the thoughts in my mind. I am not my thoughts. Nor am I this body or this character. I am spirit.

Forgiveness is my way I do this.

I hide nothing from the Holy Spirit, looking at all my thoughts with him without judging them. Just looking. He will heal my mind as I do this. That is what forgiveness is. There are two voices in my mind. One is the ego voice, which I made up. I think of it as the troublemaker. The other is the Voice for God that always speaks for Love. It is the only real voice. I am the one who is deciding which voice I will listen to.

That is all that is happening here, whether I realize it or not. The ego tries to subvert this process by convincing me I am guilty of what I find there. But the truth is, I am as God created me, wholly innocent. And I am learning not to identify with the troublemaker. It is in this way that I remember what I am. Obviously, I cannot think I am a person with all its flaws and also think I am the perfect creation of God. There is nowhere these two ideas meet. I must solve this identity crisis to be free of pain and suffering.

And so, to be free, this is what I must do.

As I look without judgment at my thoughts with the Holy Spirit and let them go, I see that I am not any of that. I am nothing that I now believe or could even imagine. All these ideas of what I am and why I think like I do and feel the way I feel are just thoughts in my mind. I am none of that. Right now, I have only one job. That is to be the observer, the decision maker. And I am deciding to let go of all I made up to replace creation. In this way, I am bringing out of hiding the altar. Now, it can serve the purpose God has for it.

9 I. Message of the Crucifixion, P 9

9 I elected, for your sake and mine, to demonstrate that the most outrageous assault, as judged by the ego, does not matter. As the world judges these things, but not as God knows them, I was betrayed, abandoned, beaten, torn, and finally killed. It was clear that this was only because of the projection of others onto me, since I had not harmed anyone and had healed many.

What I get from this is that if I feel like someone has attacked me in any way, whether small or large, I must forgive. I don’t forgive the person for what they did, but I forgive the idea they did anything. I forgive the idea that I can be betrayed or insulted or anything else. Even if they attack this body, I forgive the idea that I can be attacked because this body is nothing, only a vehicle, handy to assist in the awakening, but certainly not important to me and most certainly not me.

Only My Thoughts Hurt Me

On those rare occasions when I feel a sense of betrayal or abandonment, I question that feeling and inevitably discover that only my thoughts hurt me. That time, when I felt abandoned by my daughter, I first asked my ego what was going on. The ego told me that I must be guilty of something, then told me that my daughter was at fault. These thoughts were very painful, but at first, I was swayed by this explanation because guilt still has a place in my mind.

After a while, though, I came to my senses and looked at it with the Holy Spirit. I remembered that I cannot be abandoned. I am part of the Whole; how could I be abandoned, and by what? There is nothing outside my mind to abandon me. My daughter is part of me, and I cannot lose her, and she cannot take herself from me.

Is it true that my daughter abandoned me?

No. It cannot be true. The only explanation for my feeling of abandonment must be the mistaken thoughts of guilt and fear in my mind, and they are not real either. I chose the Atonement and allowed those beliefs to be transformed. From that healed place, I called her, not in fear but in love. I invited her company, and she gladly accepted.

Not only had nothing happened in my mind except that I believed a thought that wasn’t true, but nothing had happened in her mind either. It was just a sad story I had told myself. Then, I told myself a happier story. But really, nothing happened at all. I keep trying to make something out of nothing, but at least this time, I used the experience to take me further out of the dream.

What if she had been angry with me?

What if she had refused my company? She would have been having a sad dream of her own in that case, but still, it would only be a dream. How I react to someone else’s dream depends on my beliefs. If I choose the ego story of guilt, fear, abandonment, and betrayal to believe, then I will suffer. But I cannot make any of that real through my suffering. I can only choose to suffer or choose not to suffer.

My true prayer in these moments of confusion is not to change the circumstances but to have my mind healed. I could ask that my mind be healed of its sadness or that the circumstances be altered to reflect something different. But a truer prayer that leads to awakening would be to let me be healed of the belief in betrayal.

I can disregard that answer if my pain tells me this is impossible.  It might well be impossible for me to believe differently about it, but it is not me who does the healing. The Holy Spirit does the actual healing, and I only need to desire the healing. This can be done. I can desire to be healed more than I desire to hold my brother hostage to my suffering. 

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