A Course in Miracles

Chapter 9 - Correction of Error

Sanity & Perception

The alertness of the ego to the errors which other egos make is not the kind of vigilance the Holy Spirit would have you maintain. Egos are critical in terms of the kind of “sense” they stand for. They understand this kind of sense, because it is sensible to them. To the Holy Spirit, it makes no sense at all. To the ego, it is kind and right and good to point out errors and “correct” them. This makes perfect sense to the ego, which is totally unaware of what errors are and what correction is.

Errors are of the ego, and correction of errors of any kind lies solely in the relinquishment of the ego. When you correct a brother, you are telling him that he is wrong. He may be making no sense at the time, and it is certain that, if he is speaking from the ego, he will be making no sense. But your task is still to tell him he is right. You do not tell him this verbally, if he is speaking foolishly, because he needs correction at another level, since his error is at another level. He is still right, because he is a Son of God. His ego is always wrong, no matter what it says or does.

If you point out the errors of your brother’s ego, you must be seeing through yours, because the Holy Spirit does not perceive his errors. This must be true if there is no communication at all between the ego and the Holy Spirit. The ego makes no sense, and the Holy Spirit does not attempt to understand anything that arises from it. Since He does not understand it, He does not judge it, knowing that nothing it engenders means anything.

When you react at all to errors, you are not listening to the Holy Spirit. He has merely disregarded them, and if you attend to them, you are not hearing Him. If you do not hear Him, you are listening to your ego, and making as little sense as the brother whose errors you perceive.
This cannot be correction. Yet it is more than merely lack of correction for him. It is the giving up of correction in yourself.

When a brother behaves insanely, you can heal him only by perceiving the sanity in him. If you perceive his errors and accept them, you are accepting yours. If you want to give yours over to the Holy Spirit, you must do this with his. Unless this becomes the one way in which you handle all errors, you cannot understand how all errors are undone. How is this different from telling you that what you teach you learn? Your brother is as right as you are, and if you think he is wrong you are condemning yourself.

You cannot correct yourself. Is it possible, then, for you to correct another?

Yet you can see him truly because it is possible for you to see yourself truly. It is not up to you to change him, but merely to accept him as he is. His errors do not come from the truth that is in him, and only this truth is yours. His errors cannot change this, and can have no effect at all on the truth in you.

To perceive errors in anyone, and to react to them as if they were real, is to make them real to you. You will not escape paying the price for this, not because you are being punished for it, but because you are following the wrong guide, and will lose your way.

Your brother’s errors are not of him, any more than yours are of you. Accept his errors as real, and you have attacked yourself. If you would find your way and keep it see only truth beside you, for you walk together. The Holy Spirit in you forgives all things in you and in your brother. His errors are forgiven with yours. Atonement is no more separate than love.

Atonement cannot be separate because it comes from love. Any attempt you make to correct a brother means that you believe correction by you is possible, and this can only be the arrogance of the ego. Correction is of God, Who does not know of arrogance. The Holy Spirit forgives everything because God created everything.

Do not undertake His function or you will forget yours. Accept only the function of healing in time because that is what time is for. God gave you the function to create in eternity. You do not need to learn this, but you do need to learn to want this, and for this all learning was made. This is the Holy Spirit’s good use of an ability which you do not need, but which you have made. Give it to Him! You do not know how to use it. He will teach you how to see yourself without condemnation by learning how to look on everything without it. Condemnation will then not be real to you, and all your errors will be forgiven.

 
 
 

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