A Course in Miracles

Chapter 26 - The Transition

The "Sacrifice" of Oneness

In the “dynamics” of attack is sacrifice a key idea. It is the pivot upon which all compromise, all desperate attempts to strike a bargain, and all conflicts achieve a seeming balance. It (sacrifice) is the symbol of the central theme that somebody must lose. Its focus on the body is apparent, for it is always an attempt to limit loss.

The body is itself a sacrifice; a giving up of power in the name of saving just a little for yourself.

To see a brother in another body, separate from yours, is the expression of a wish to see a little part of him and sacrifice the rest. Look at the world, and you will see nothing attached to anything beyond itself. All seeming entities can come a little nearer, or go a little farther off, but cannot join.

The world you see is based on “sacrifice” of oneness. It is a picture of a complete disunity and total lack of joining. Around each entity is built a wall so seeming solid that it looks as if what is inside can never reach without, and what is out can never reach and join with what is locked away, within the wall. Each part must sacrifice the other part, to keep itself complete. For if they joined, each one would lose its own identity, and by their separation are their selves maintained.

The little that the body fences off becomes the self, preserved through sacrifice of all the rest. And all the rest must lose this little part, remaining incomplete to keep its own identity intact. In this perception of yourself, the body’s loss would be a sacrifice indeed. For sight of bodies becomes the sign that sacrifice is limited, and something still remains for you alone. And for this little to belong to you, are limits placed on everything outside, just as they are on everything you think is yours. For giving and receiving are the same. And to accept the limits of a body is to impose these limits on each brother whom you see. For you must see him as you see yourself.

The body is a loss, and can be made to sacrifice. And while you see your brother as a body, apart from you and separate in his cell, you are demanding sacrifice of him and you. What greater sacrifice could be demanded than that God’s Son perceive himself without his Father? And his Father be without His Son? Yet every sacrifice demands that they be separate and without the other.

The memory of God must be denied if any sacrifice is asked of anyone. What witness to the wholeness of God’s Son is seen within a world of separate bodies, however much he witnesses to truth? He is invisible in such a world. Nor can his song of union and of love be heard at all. Yet is it given him to make the world recede before his song, and sight of him replace the body’s eyes.

Those who would see the witnesses to truth instead of to illusion merely ask that they might see a purpose in the world that gives it sense, and makes it meaningful. Without your special function has this world no meaning for you. Yet it can become a treasure house as rich and limitless as Heaven itself. No instant passes here in which your brother’s holiness cannot be seen, to add a limitless supply to every meager scrap and tiny crumb of happiness that you allot yourself.

You can lose sight of oneness, but can not make sacrifice of its reality. Nor can you lose what you would sacrifice, nor keep the Holy Spirit from His task of showing you that it has not been lost. Hear, then, the song your brother sings to you. And let the world recede and take the rest his witness offers on behalf of peace. But judge him not, for you will hear no song of liberation for yourself, nor see what it is given him to witness to, that you may see it and rejoice with him. Make not his holiness a sacrifice to your belief in sin. You sacrifice your innocence with his, and die each time you see in him a sin deserving death.

Yet every instant can you be reborn and given life again. His holiness gives life to you, who cannot die because his sinlessness is known to God and can no more be sacrificed by you than can the light in you be blotted out because he sees it not. You who would make a sacrifice of life, and make your eyes and ears bear witness to the death of God and of His holy Son, think not that you have power to make of them what God willed not they be.

In Heaven, God’s Son is not imprisoned in a body, nor is sacrificed in solitude to sin. And as he is in Heaven, so must he be eternally and everywhere. He is the same forever. Born again each instant, untouched by time, and far beyond the reach of any sacrifice of life or death. For neither did he make, and only one was given him, by One Who knows His gifts can never suffer sacrifice and loss. God’s justice rests in gentleness upon His Son and keeps him safe from all injustice the world would lay upon him.

Could it be that you could make his sins reality and sacrifice his Father’s Will for him?

Condemn him not by seeing him within the rotting prison where he sees himself. It is your special function to ensure the door be opened, that he may come forth to shine on you, and give you back the gift of freedom by receiving it of you. What is the Holy Spirit’s special function but to release the holy Son of God from the imprisonment he made to keep himself from justice? Could your function be a task apart and separate from His Own?

 

 

 

 

A Course in Miracles

Chapter 26 - The Transition

The Forms of Error

It is not difficult to understand the reasons why you do not ask the Holy Spirit to solve all problems for you. He has not greater difficulty in resolving some than others. Every problem is the same to Him, because each one is solved in just the same respect, and through the same approach. The aspects which need solving do not change, whatever form the problem seems to take. A problem can appear in many forms, and it will do so while the problem lasts. It serves no purpose to attempt to solve it in a special form. It will recur and then recur again and yet again, until it has been answered for all time and will not rise again in any form. And only then are you released from it.

The Holy Spirit offers you release from every problem that you think you have. They are the same to Him because each one, regardless of the form it seems to take, is a demand that someone suffer loss, and make a sacrifice that you might gain. And when the situation is worked out so no one loses, is the problem gone, because it was an error in perception which now has been corrected. One mistake is not more difficult for Him to bring to truth than is another.

For there is but one mistake; the whole idea that loss is possible, and could result in gain for anyone.

If this were true, then God would be unfair; sin would be possible, attack be justified, and vengeance fair.

This one mistake, in any form, has one correction: There is no loss; to think there is, is a mistake.

You have no problems, though you think you have. And yet you could not think so, if you saw them vanish one by one, without regard to size, complexity, or place and time, or any attribute which you perceive that makes each one seem different from the rest. Think not the limits you impose on what you see can limit God in any way.

The miracle of justice can correct all errors. Every problem is an error. It does injustice to the Son of God, and therefore is not true. The Holy Spirit does not evaluate injustices as great or small, or more or less. They have no properties to Him. They are mistakes from which the Son of God is suffering, but needlessly. And so He takes the thorns and nails away. He does not pause to judge whether the hurt be large or little. He makes but one judgment; that to hurt God’s Son must be unfair, and therefore is not so.

You, who believe it safe to give but some mistakes to be corrected while you keep the others to yourself, remember this: Justice is total. There is no such thing as partial justice. If the Son of God is guilty, then is he condemned and he deserves no mercy from the God of justice. But ask not God to punish him because you find him guilty and would have him die.

God offers you the means to see his innocence. Would it be fair to punish him because you will not look at what is there to see? Each time you keep a problem for yourself to solve, or judge that it is one which has no resolution, you have made it great, and past the hope of healing. You deny the miracle of justice can be fair.

If God is just, then can there be no problems that justice cannot solve. But you believe that some injustices are fair and good, and necessary to preserve yourself. It is these problems that you think are great and cannot be resolved. For there are those you want to suffer loss, and no one whom you wish to be preserved from sacrifice entirely.

Consider once again your special function.

One is given you to see in him his perfect sinlessness. And you will ask no sacrifice of him, because you could not will he suffer loss.

The miracle of justice you call forth will rest on you as surely as on him. Nor will the Holy Spirit be content until it is received by everyone. For what you give to Him is everyone’s, and by your giving it can He ensure that everyone receives it equally.

Think, then, how great your own release will be, when you are willing to receive correction for all your problems. You will not keep one, for pain in any form you will not want. And you will see each little hurt resolved before the Holy Spirit’s gentle sight. Fr all of them are little in His sight and worth no more than just a tiny sigh before they disappear, to be forever undone and unremembered. What seemed once to be...

  • a special problem,
  • a mistake without a remedy, or
  • an affliction without a cure,

has been transformed into a universal blessing. Sacrifice is gone. Aand in its place the Love of God can be remembered, and will shine away all memory of sacrifice and loss.

God cannot be remembered until justice is loved instead of feared. He cannot be unjust to anyone or anything, because He knows that everything that is belongs to Him and will forever be as He created it. Nothing He loves but must be sinless and beyond attack. Your special function opens wide the door beyond which is the memory of His Love kept perfectly intact and undefiled. And all you need to do is but to wish that Heaven be given you instead of hell, and every bolt and barrier that seems to hold the door securely barred and locked will merely fall away and disappear. For it is not your Father’s Will that you should offer or receive less than He gave, when He created you in perfect love.

 

 

A Course in Miracles

Chapter 26 - The Transition

The Borderland

Complexity is not of God. How could it be, when all He knows is one? He knows of...

  • ONE creation,
  • ONE reality,
  • ONE truth, and but
  • ONE Son.

Nothing conflicts with oneness. How, then, could there be complexity in Him? What is there to decide? For it is conflict that makes choice possible. The truth is simple; it is one, without an opposite, and how could strife enter in its simple presence and bring complexity where oneness is? The truth makes no decisions, for there is nothing to decide between. And only if there were, could choosing be a necessary step in the advance toward oneness.

What is everything leaves room for nothing else. Yet is this magnitude beyond the scope of this curriculum. Nor is it necessary we dwell on anything that cannot be immediately grasped.

There is a borderland of thought which stands between this world and Heaven. It is not a place. And when you reach it is apart from time. Here is the meeting-place where thoughts are brought together; where conflicting values meet, and all illusions are laid down beside the truth, where they are judged to be untrue. This borderland is just beyond the gate of Heaven.

Here is every thought made pure and wholly simple. Here is sin denied, and everything that is received instead.

This is the journey’s end. We have referred to it as the real world. And yet there is a contradiction here, in that the words imply a limited reality, a partial truth, a segment of the universe made true. This is because knowledge makes no attack upon perception. They are brought together, and only one continues past the gate where Oneness is. Salvation is a borderland where place and time and choice have meaning still, and yet it can be seen that they are temporary, out of place, and every choice has been already made.

Nothing the Son of God believes can be destroyed. But what is truth to him must be brought to...

  • the last comparison that he will ever make,
  • the last evaluation that will be possible,
  • the final judgment upon this world.

It is the judgment of the truth upon illusion, of knowledge on perception...

it has no meaning, and does not exist.

This is not your decision. It is but a simple statement of a simple fact. But in this world there are no simple facts, because what is the same and what is different remain unclear. The one essential thing to make a choice at all is this distinction. And herein lies the difference between the worlds. In this one (ego world), choice is made impossible. In the real world is choosing simplified.

Salvation stops just short of Heaven, for only perception needs salvation. Heaven was never lost, and so cannot be saved. Yet who can make a choice between...

  • the wish for Heaven and
  • the wish for hell

unless he recognizes they are not the same? This difference is the learning goal this course has set. It will not go beyond this aim. Its only purpose is to teach what is the same and what is different, leaving room to make the only choice which can be made.

There is no basis for choice in this complex and over complicated world. Fr no one understands what is the same and seems to choose where no choice really is. The real world is the area of choice made real, not in the outcome, but in the perception of alternatives for choice. That there is choice is an illusion. Yet within this one lies the undoing of every illusion, not excepting this.

Is not this like your special function, where the separation is undone by change of purpose in what once was specialness, and now is union? All illusions are but one, and in the recognition this is so, lies the ability to give up all attempts to choose between them and to make them different. There is no conflict here. No sacrifice is possible in the relinquishment of an illusion recognized as such. Where all reality has been withdrawn from what was never true, can it be hard to give it up and choose what must be true?

 

 

 

 

A Course in Miracles

Chapter 26 - The Transition

Where Sin Has Left

Forgiveness is this world’s equivalent of Heaven’s justice. It translates the (ego's) world of sin into a simple world, where justice can be reflected from beyond the gate behind which total lack of limits lies. Nothing in boundless love could need forgiveness. And what is charity within the world, gives way to simple justice past the gate that opens into Heaven.

No one forgives unless he has believed in sin, and still believes that he has much to be forgiven. Forgiveness thus becomes the means by which he learns he has done nothing to forgive. Forgiveness always rests upon the one who offers it, until he sees himself as needing it no more. And thus is he returned to his real function of creating, which his forgiveness offers him again.

Forgiveness turns the world of sin into a world of glory, wonderful to see. Each flower shines in light, and every bird sings of the joy of Heaven. There is no sadness and there is no parting here, for everything is totally forgiven. And what has been forgiven must join, for nothing stands between to keep them separate and apart. The sinless must perceive that they are one, for nothing stands between to push the other off. And in the space which sin left vacant, do they join as one, in gladness recognizing what is part of them has not been kept apart and separate.

The holy place on which you stand is but the space that sin has left. And here you see the face of Christ, arising in its place. Who could behold the face of Christ and not recall His Father as He really is? Who could fear love (God), and stand upon the ground where sin has left, a place for Heaven’s altar to rise and tower far above the world and reach beyond the universe to touch the heart of all creation?

What is Heaven, but a song of gratitude and love and praise by everything created to the Source of its creation? The holiest of altars is set where once sin was believed to be. And here does every light of heaven come to be rekindled and increased in joy, for here is what was lost restored to them and all their radiance made whole again.

Forgiveness brings no little miracles to lay before the gate of Heaven. Here the Son of God Himself comes to receive each gift that brings him nearer to his home. Not one is lost, and none is cherished more than any other. Each reminds him of His Father’s Love as surely as the rest, and each one teaches him that what he feared he loves the most.

What but a miracle could change his mind, so that he understands that love cannot be feared?What other miracle is there but this? And what else need there be to make the space between you disappear?

Where sin once was perceived will rise a world which will become an altar to the truth. And you will join the lights of Heaven there, and sing their song of gratitude and praise. And as they come to you to be complete, so will you go with them. For no one hears the song of Heaven and remains without a voice that adds its power to the song and makes it sweeter still. And each one joins the singing at the altar which was raised within the tiny spot that sin proclaimed to be its own. And what was tiny then has soared into a magnitude of song in which the universe has joined with but a single voice.

This tiny spot of sin that stands between you still is holding back the happy opening of Heaven’s gate. How little is the hindrance which withholds the wealth of Heaven from you! And how great will be the joy in Heaven when you join the mighty chorus to the Love of God!

 

 
 

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