III. Atonement and Miracles, P 5 Cont
5 Error cannot really threaten truth, which can always withstand it. Only the error is actually vulnerable. You are free to establish your kingdom where you see fit, but the right choice is inevitable if you remember this:
Spirit is in a state of grace forever.
Your reality is only spirit.
Therefore you are in a state of grace forever.
Atonement undoes all errors in this respect, and thus uproots the source of fear. Whenever you experience God’s reassurances as threat, it is always because you are defending misplaced or misdirected loyalty. When you project this to others you imprison them, but only to the extent to which you reinforce errors they have already made. This makes them vulnerable to the distortions of others, since their own perception of themselves is distorted. The miracle worker can only bless them, and this undoes their distortions and frees them from prison.
How does the Atonement help us? It undoes all errors in the mind through uprooting the source of fear. It does this by healing the mind of the belief that something we have done has caused our nature to change, the result being that our innocence is lost. Through the healing of the mind we realize that there is no guilt in us because we are Spirit and in a state of grace forever.
Jesus talks to us about experiencing God’s reassurances as a threat and for a moment I was confused. I could not see how I do this, but I see that when I resist the truth it is because I see the reassurance of it as something to be avoided even though I may not admit that to myself. It is obvious to me that I still refuse to believe in my complete innocence.
I often think I am guilty. I have gotten really good at not seeing that in myself most of the time, but it is still there. If I were free of guilt I would no longer experience fear and would be completely and permanently awakened. What God says about me seems very reassuring. It seems wonderful and miraculous. I am innocent. No matter what I do, I am never guilty.
How wonderful to know that I am not stained by my errors, and that I remain as God created me. And yet, I feel stained. I feel like I am guilty. There are still some things I have done in my life that bring a flush of shame when I think of them. If I am innocent and nothing I did has meaning, why should I feel ashamed?
And why would I not be thrilled to be wiped clean of that shame? Jesus says it is because I am defending misplaced or misdirected loyalty. What do you mean by that, Jesus?
Jesus: Dear one, there are only two places for you to place your loyalty; God or ego. If you are not siding with God you are siding with your alternative to God, the ego. Let us look at one of your favorite ways to feel guilty. You failed (in your eyes) to be supportive of your mother when she had Alzheimer’s. God said that you are not guilty for anything you did or failed to do.
You find it hard to support that truth. In an effort to appear to accept God’s decision you try to think of excuses for your behavior. You try to see your behavior in a different light. You try to find reasons that your behavior was acceptable. But these are all defenses against God. If you fully accepted God’s word you would not need any of these reasons to be innocent. That you need reasons to see your innocence proves that you feel that you are guilty.
When you didn’t know how to help your mom and when you didn’t know how best to love her, and when you failed to visit and made excuses to stay away, you felt very guilty. God declared you innocent, but you constantly defended against your innocence. You clung to your guilt, remaining loyal to it to the bitter end. With each gentle reminder of your innocence, you stacked up your proof that you were a bad daughter and guilty, guilty, guilty.
What you could not let yourself see is that you were, all this time, defending yourself against God. Your loyalty was misplaced as you defended your right to be guilty and live in fear and shame. This circular thinking is typical of the ego. The ego said you were guilty for your behavior and should feel bad about it. God said you were innocent, but the ego said you could not accept that declaration because you were too guilty and didn’t deserve forgiveness.
The only way out of this cycle is to simply step out. Step out on faith. Step out because you do have another choice and you can simply make that choice. You don’t have to do anything to deserve it; you don’t have to do anything to atone for your sin. I am the Atonement and it is done. Yes, my dear one, it is really that simple. Lay down your defenses. Ignore everything except the truth.
What is the alternative? You continue living that bitter life you made in place of the glory that is yours and will always be yours. You will become so miserable and afraid of your thoughts that you will try to sling them away from you and put them on others, as if there were someplace that is outside your own mind where they could be instead. This projection will add to your belief you are guilty and the cycle grows and becomes more intense as you believe you have caused more harm.
You cannot convince anyone they are guilty unless they already hold that belief in their mind, but most of your brothers and sisters do believe in their guilt. Your continued belief adds to the certainty that all of you are guilty and you move more deeply into the illusion. You still are not guilty, though. More illusion is just more illusion. The illusion is meaningless. It is nothing and adding nothing to nothing is still nothing. You cannot be guilty for doing nothing. You can, however, suffer from the belief that you have actually done something.
Another cycle you are caught in is the belief that you must first correct your errors, become a better person, if you will, then you can come to God for help because then you will deserve help and be worthy of it. People do this in a number of ways. They become very generous and helpful to their brothers even to the point of self-sacrifice. Another way they do this is to dive into spiritual study, sometimes to the exclusion of all else, not from love of the work, but from fear that less will condemn them, or from the belief that sacrifice will redeem them.
Another way these confused children of God look for salvation is through punishing themselves. They punish themselves through physical or mental pain, loss of every conceivable kind, or the denial of anything that brings joy or peace. They punish themselves in a misguided effort to purify and become worthy. And all the while unconscious guilt increases because they think they have usurped God’s right to punish them.
There is nothing you or anyone need do to prepare yourselves for God. You are perfect right now. You are untouched by your perceived wrongs and remain as God created you. Guilt is not something to be atoned for or over come. My dear friend, it is so very simple. Take my hand and together we will turn our back on guilt. It cannot stop us. Guilt cannot hold you prisoner; only you can do that. Give me your loyalty. I will use it to save your brothers and sisters from their confusion. I will use you. This is what is needed. Accept the miracle I offer you. That is all that is left to do.