II. Revelation, Time and Miracles, P 6
6 The miracle minimizes the need for time. In the longitudinal or horizontal plane the recognition of the equality of the members of the Sonship appears to involve almost endless time. However, the miracle entails a sudden shift from horizontal to vertical perception. This introduces an interval from which the giver and receiver both emerge farther along in time than they would otherwise have been. The miracle thus has the unique property of abolishing time to the extent that it renders the interval of time it spans unnecessary. There is no relationship between the time a miracle takes and the time it covers. The miracle substitutes for learning that might have taken thousands of years. It does so by the underlying recognition of perfect equality of giver and receiver on which the miracle rests. The miracle shortens time by collapsing it, thus eliminating certain intervals within it. It does this, however, within the larger temporal sequence.
What is the purpose of the miracle? To make my life here more comfortable? No. To cure the body of disease? No. To prove that God exists? No. Not that these effects cannot happen, because often they do. But they are not the purpose. Right in the first sentence Jesus tells us that miracles save time. Later in the paragraph he says that a miracle can substitute for thousands of years of learning so he is not kidding when he says it saves time.
And what are we learning? We are learning that all members of the Sonship are equal. And how does this work? How does the miracle help me to know that we are all equal? When my son was in physical distress I, at first, had trouble taking my eyes off the problem, and so what was happening is that I was separating us. I saw Toby as the one who was sick, the one who needed a miracle.
I knew I was not helping because I was right there in the ego problem with him. The thoughts and feelings I had were: I am his mom, and so I should be helping him. I should be performing the miracle, and relieving him of his pain and healing him of his injury. As a Course student and teacher I was falling down on the job, teaching one thing and doing another. I felt very guilty on top of feeling afraid and upset for my son.
I also knew that all this was wrong-minded thinking, but I had a hard time stepping out of it. I stayed with it, though, asking the Holy Spirit to help me let go of my fear and see clearly. I began to back out of the ego thinking that was preventing me from being helpful. I began to remember that as a teacher of God I am always teaching what I need to learn so there was no reason to feel guilty that I was not being a “perfect” teacher. The teacher of God teaches perfection over and over until she learns it.
In my frustration I finally made the right choice. I said, “Jesus, I want your miracle!” And when I said it, I realized that something had changed. It was as if all of Heaven let out a sigh, “Finally, she asks.” I began to remember that the miracle is a change of mind, not a change of circumstance. This was really hard because I desperately wanted a change of circumstance and felt guilty for even thinking I should ignore my son’s physical pain for an instant. The ego is very attracted to guilt, isn’t it?
But again, I continued to ask for help even through my doubt and fear. What happened is that as I slowly rejected each ego belief, the truth began to emerge. I began to realize that, in this situation, as in all situations, there is no separation. A couple of mornings after this all began, I awoke to Jesus speaking to me through my I-Pod. (No, that was not the miracle. It was A Course in Miracles recorded. ~smile~)
It was saying, “There is nothing outside your mind.” Of course. If nothing is outside my mind, then my son is in my mind. His injury is in my mind. His pain is in my mind. So what needs healing? My mind. I began asking the Holy Spirit to heal my mind, but this time I had a different understanding of that request. My son and I are not separate. We are the same, and we are equal members of the Sonship. I am not the teacher doing for the student, but a part of the Sonship healing Itself.
I may become distracted from this truth at some time in the future, but I will never forget it. Who knows how many years (maybe a thousand) of learning I would have had to experience if not for the miracle of my mind being healed of the belief that healing takes place outside my mind, that there is someone else who needs healing, and that I am somehow different and apart from that someone, greater or lesser than that someone.
This miracle raised me up in my thinking. This is the vertical shift in understanding, and Toby and I emerged further along the horizontal line (time) than we began. By the way, Toby is doing much better now, much better than he “should” be doing according to medical expectations. The doctor is in my mind as well as Toby’s body, the treatment is in my mind, the idea of time is in my mind. There is nothing outside my mind. The cause and the effect are both in my mind and so as the cause is healed, the effect is changed.