31 - Simplicity of Salvation
is change. Salvation does not seek to use a means as
yet too alien to your thinking to be helpful, nor to
make the kinds of change you could not recognize. Concepts
are needed while perception lasts, and changing concepts
is salvation’s task. For it must deal in contrasts,
not in truth, which has no opposite and cannot change.
world’s concepts are the guilty “bad; ”
the “good” are innocent. And no one here
but holds a concept of himself in which he counts the
“good” to pardon him the “bad.”
Nor does he trust the “good” in anyone,
believing that the “bad” must lurk behind.
This concept emphasizes treachery, and trust becomes
impossible. Nor could it change while you perceive the
“bad” in you.
not recognize your “evil” thoughts as long
as you see value in attack. You will perceive them sometimes,
but will not see them as meaningless. And so they come
in fearful form, with content still concealed, to shake
your sorry concept of yourself, and blacken it with
still another “crime.”
give yourself your innocence, for you are too confused
about yourself. But should one brother dawn upon your
sight as wholly worthy of forgiveness, then your concept
of yourself is wholly changed. Your “evil”
thoughts have been forgiven with his, because you let
them all affect you not. No longer did you choose that
you should be the sign of evil and of guilt in him.
And as you gave your trust to what is good in him, you
gave it to the good in you.
of concepts, it is thus you see him more than just a
body, for the good is never what the body seems to be.
The actions of the body are perceived as coming from
the “baser” part of you, and thus of him
as well. By focusing upon the good in him, the body
grows decreasingly persistent in your sight, and will
at length be seen as little more than just a shadow
circling round the good. And this will be your concept
of yourself, when you have reached the world beyond
the sight your eyes alone can offer you to see. For
you will not interpret what you see without the Aid
that God has given you. And in His sight there is another
in that world just as much as this. For both are concepts
of yourself, which can be interchanged but never jointly
held. The contrast is far greater than you think, for
you will love this concept of yourself, because it was
not made for you alone. Born as a gift for someone not
perceived to be yourself, it has been given you. For
your forgiveness, offered unto him, has been accepted
now for both of you.
in him who walks with you, so that your fearful concept
of yourself may change. And look upon the good in him,
that you may not be frightened by your “evil”
thoughts, because they do not cloud your view of him.
And all this shift requires is that you be willing that
this happy change occur. No more than this is asked.
On its behalf, remember what the concept of yourself
which now you hold has brought you in its wake, and
welcome the glad contrast offered you. Hold out your
hand, that you may have the gift of kind forgiveness
which you offer one whose need for it is just the same
as yours. And let the cruel concept of yourself be changed
to one which brings the peace of God.
of yourself which now you hold would guarantee your
function here remain forever unaccomplished and undone.
And thus it dooms you to a bitter sense of deep depression
and futility. Yet it need not be fixed unless you choose
to hold it past the hope of change, and keep it static
and concealed within your mind. Give it instead to Him
Who understands the changes that it needs to let it
serve the function given you to bring you peace, that
you may offer peace to have it yours. Alternatives are
in your mind to use, and you can see yourself another
you not rather look upon yourself as needed for salvation
of the world, instead of as salvation’s enemy?
of the self stands like a shield, a silent barricade
before the truth, and hides it from your sight. All
things you see are images, because you look on them
as through a barrier which dims your sight and warps
your vision, so that you behold nothing with clarity.
The light is kept from everything you see. At most,
you glimpse a shadow of what lies beyond. At least,
you merely look on darkness, and perceive the terrified
imaginings that come from guilty thoughts and concepts
born of fear. And what you see is hell, for fear is
is given you is for release...
you out of hell with those you love beside you, and
the universe with them.
your role within the universe! To every part of true
creation has the Lord of Love and Life entrusted all
salvation from the misery of hell. And to each one has
He allowed the grace to be a Savior to the holy ones
especially entrusted to his care. And this he learns
when first he looks upon one brother as he looks upon
himself, and sees the mirror of himself in him. Thus
is the concept of himself laid by, for nothing stands
between his sight and what he looks upon, to judge what
he beholds. And in this single vision does he see the
face of Christ, and understands he looks on everyone
as he beholds this One. For there is light where darkness
was before, and now the veil is lifted from his sight.
across the face of Christ, the fear of God and of salvation,
and the love of guilt and death, they all are different
names for just one error; that there is a space between
you and your brother, kept apart by an illusion of yourself
which holds him off from you, and you away from him.
The sword of judgment is the weapon which you give to
the illusion of yourself, that it may fight to keep
the space that holds your brother off unoccupied by
love. Yet while you hold this sword, you must perceive
the body as yourself, for you are bound to separation
from the sight of him who holds the mirror to another
view of what he is, and thus what you must be.
is temptation but the wish to stay in hell and misery?
And what could this give rise to but an image of yourself
that can be miserable, and remain in hell and torment?
Who has learned to see his brother not as this has saved
himself, and thus is he a Savior to the rest. To everyone
has God entrusted all, because a partial savior would
be one who is but partly saved.
ones whom God has given each of you to save are...
everyone you meet or look upon, not knowing who they
those you saw an instant and forgot, and
those you knew a long while since, and
has given you His Son to save from every concept that
he ever held.
you wish to stay in hell, how could you be the Saviour
of the Son of God? How would you know his holiness while
you see him apart from yours? For holiness is seen through
holy eyes that look upon the innocence within, and thus
expect to see it everywhere. And so they call it forth
in everyone they look upon, that he may be what they
expect of him.
the Savior’s vision...
that he see his innocence in all he looks upon, and
sees his own salvation everywhere.
noconcept of himself between his calm and open eyes
and what he sees. He brings the light to what he looks
upon, that he may see it as it really is.
form temptation seems to take, it always but reflects
a wish to be a self which you are not. And from that
wish a concept rises, teaching that you are the thing
you wish to be. It will remain your concept of yourself
until the wish that fathered it no longer is held dear.
But while you cherish it, you will behold your brother
in the likeness of the self whose image has the wish
begot of you. For vision can but represent a wish, because
it has no power to create. Yet it can look with love
or look with hate, depending only on the simple choice
of whether you would join with what you see, or keep
yourself apart and separate.
vision is as innocent of what your brother is as it
is free of any judgment made upon yourself. It sees
no past in anyone at all. And thus it serves a wholly
open mind, unclouded by old concepts, and prepared to
look on only what the present holds. It cannot judge
because it does not know. And recognizing this, it merely
is the meaning of what I behold?”
the answer given. And the door held open for the face
of Christ to shine upon the one who asks, in innocence,
to see beyond the veil of old ideas and ancient concepts
held so long and dear against the vision of the Christ
against temptation, then, remembering that it is but
a wish, insane and meaningless, to make yourself a thing
which you are not. And think as well upon the thing
that you would be instead.
a thing of ...
remaining hope except to die, and
temptation; nothing more than this. Can this be difficult
to choose against?
what temptation is, and see the real alternatives you
choose between. There are but two. Be not deceived by
what appears as many choices. There is hell or Heaven,
and of these you choose but one.
the world’s light, given unto you, be hidden from
the world. It needs the light, for it is dark indeed,
and men despair because the Savior’s vision is
withheld, and what they see is death. Their Saviour
stands, unknowing and unknown, beholding them with eyes
unopened. And they cannot see until he looks on them
with seeing eyes, and offers them forgiveness with his
to whom God says,
My Son! ”
not to listen, when you learn that it is you for whom
He asks release? And what but this is what this course
would teach? And what but this is there for you to learn?