ACIM Conversations, Part 7

ACIM Conversations, Part 7
The Mind Which is in Heaven

Student: I’ve been discussing some of the points of our discussions online and am getting some strange comments. Some simply maintain we are not here because the separation did not happen. Instead, we are all fully in heaven.

Teacher: Yeah, a source of some ACIM humor centers around the idea we are not here, but some take this literally to the extreme.

Student: What do you say to a guy who is here enough to write or talk to me, but claims he is not here, but in heaven and even says there is no “here”?

Teacher: I think you’ll find that many with this mindset are more interested in expressing with what they consider to be the correct phraseology than in really communicating.

For instance, if we literally go by what some passages in the Course says, we could say that there is no “here” anywhere, neither is there a “place”. The problem is that, even if you accept this, it is impossible to communicate many things in language without using those two words, especially in relation to our world. Even the Course itself has to resort numerous times to referring to “here,” “there” and “place” in relation to the illusion. Sometimes these students correct others in such details in an effort to demonstrate their superior knowledge.

Student: I’ve noticed. But what do you say to a guy who tells me I am wrong for using “here” and “place” by insisting we are not here but safe in heaven?

Teacher: You might tell him that he gets an A for being technically correct, but an F in effective communication. The important thing in discussions like these is not in being right, but in communicating so the two minds become as one, which is our natural state. This is what you and I have been doing.

Student: Yes, it is enjoyable having a discussion where we are just trying to figure out what the Course is really saying rather than proving who is right.

Teacher: That said, let us look at what the Course is really saying when it gives statements that seem to tell us we are in heaven now and not in the dream. The most common one quoted was one we referenced in our last session. Here it is again:

“You dwell not here, but in eternity. You travel but in dreams, while safe at home.” T-13.VII.17

Have you encountered any comment on this quote?

Student: Yes. This is one of those used to support the idea we are not here. Instead, we are really in heaven.

Teacher: Yet, it says we travel in dreams. Who or what is traveling?

Student: Good question, as students just focus on the “not here” part. I guess part of the mind.

Teacher: Many times does the Course compare our separation to our dreams here. By comparison could you say that the you of this world travels in dreams at night?

Student: I suppose.

Teacher: And when you travel in dreams at night and having a nightmare are you really in danger or are you safe in your bed?

Student: I’m safe in my bed.

Teacher: Is the you that is safe in your bed asleep or awake.

Student: Asleep.

Teacher: And correspondingly is your real self in heaven asleep or awake?

Student: I believe the Course tells us we are asleep.

Teacher: The fact that we are in a dreamlike sleep is verified numerous places in the Course. For instance, concerning Adam who represents the separated Sons it says:

“Yet the Bible says that a deep sleep fell upon Adam, and nowhere is there reference to his waking up.” T-2.I.3

Then we have this:

“The special ones are all asleep, surrounded by a world of loveliness they do not see. Freedom and peace and joy stand there, beside the bier on which they sleep, and call them to come forth and waken from their dream of death. Yet they hear nothing. They are lost in dreams of specialness.” T-24.III.7

We are definitely in a dreamworld, but the question is where is our real self?

Student: In a regular dream I am linked to a living body in the outer world, but the life of the body thinks it is in the dreamworld. So, if I use a correspondence, I need to ask what is still in the eternal world that I am connected to? I know there are no bodies there.

Teacher: Good thinking. In this world we appear to live in bodies. What is our dwelling place in heaven?

Student: There are no bodies so it must be our minds.

Teacher: Yes, your “mind is part of creation and part of its Creator.” W-pI.52.5 What is the difference between your mind before and after the separation?

Student: We were awake before, and asleep afterwards.

Teacher: Yes, and what else?

Student: Let me see… The Course tells us our minds were split after the separation.

Teacher: Actually, it tells us that “The separation is merely another term for a split mind.” T-5.III.9

Into what did the mind split?

Student: I know there’s a higher and lower mind. It seems like the Course calls them right and wrong mindedness.

Teacher: We are told that “you have split your mind into what knows and does not know the truth.” W-pI.139.5 and “the mind is split between the ego and the Holy Spirit.” T-3.VI.7

Then it makes this interesting statement:

“Any split in mind must involve a rejection of part of it, and this is the belief in separation.” T-6.II.1

Student: So one part of our mind rejects the other part. That seems strange.

Teacher: But then we must consider this statement: “It is impossible to see two worlds.” W-pI.130.5

 Which world are you seeing now?

Student: This world. I guess you could call it the dream world.

Teacher: And which world are you not seeing?

Student: Unfortunately, that would be the eternal world.

Teacher: And why do you not see heaven?

Student: Your quote says because one part of my mind rejects the other part

Teacher: So, while part of your mind is dreaming of being an ego and making it seem real what is the other part doing?

Student: Since we can only see one world then the real part is rejected and must be asleep

Teacher: Yes, it’s safe at home but asleep, kind of like your body is safe in bed while you may be having what appears to be a dangerous nightmare.

Student: Would this be why the Course says that God is lonely without us? We see this world but not the world where God is and thus, He cannot communicate with us?

Teacher: Exactly it says that “He is lonely when the minds He created do not communicate fully with Him.” T-4.VII.6

Student: I just found a quote along that same line of thought: “His completeness, is blocked when the Sonship does not communicate with Him as one. So He thought, ‘My children sleep and must be awakened.’” T-6.V.1

Teacher: Since our mind is split and we are just seeing this world how can we become aware of the eternal world or the mind of God?

Student: That’s the Holy Spirit’s job. He can be our eyes to the true reality if we let him.

Teacher: Yes, it says, “The Holy Spirit mediates higher to lower communication, keeping the direct channel from God to you open for revelation.” T-1.II.5

What then do you conclude from this conversation? Are you really in heaven or not?

Student: Apparently my mind is split and the real part is in heaven, but is asleep and not in full communication with God. The ego part split off and sees this world of illusion and does not see the eternal world. Because of real self is asleep the Holy Spirit was created and sent to assist us in receiving truth from heaven and waking up.

Teacher: Good summary.

Student: I have found though that this whole subject is very complex and has numerous branches that seem to add opposition to our conclusions today. If you settle on what the Course teaches on one point someone will switch to other quotes that seem to disagree.

Teacher: Can you give me an example?

Student: Even after this dialog is presented some will say that the separation was over ages ago and we are fully in heaven, but just doing something like watching a rerun of a movie of our lives. They will say we are not even here in the dream for the dream was over long ago.

Teacher: The Course does give some subtle teachings on this that are subject to numerous interpretations. Again, we have to look at the whole rather than the part. We’ll see what we can do to simplify this next.

Links to The Mysteries of A Course in Miracles:

Copyright by J J Dewey

Read the Introduction HERE, Read Chapter One HERE. Chapter Two HERE, Chapter Three HERE, Chapter Four HERE, Chapter Five HERE Chapter Six HERE, Chapter Seven HERE, Chapter Eight HERE, Chapter Nine HERE, Chapter Ten HERE, Chapter Eleven HERE, Chapter Twelve HERE, Chapter Thirteen HERE, Chapter Fourteen HERE, Fifteen HERE, Sixteen HERE, Seventeen HERE,       Eighteen HERE, Nineteen HERE, Twenty HERE, Twenty-One HERE, Twenty-Two HERE, Twenty-Three HERE, Twenty-Four HERE, Twenty-Five HERE, Twenty-Six HERE, Twenty-Seven  HERE, Twenty-Eight  HERE, Twenty-Nine HERE, Thirty HERE

ACIM Conversations, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part  16, Part 17, Part 18, Part 19, Part 20, Part 21, Part 22, Part 23, Part 24, Part 25

Index for Original Archives

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ACIM Conversations, Part 6

ACIM Conversations, Part 6
Is Anything Happening?

Student: Another discussion I see a lot is something that sounds kind of silly to someone who is not a Course student. It is whether or not we are here. The idea is that this world never happened and we never left heaven and are still there. Others say something did happen and we are here but in an illusionary sense. What do you think?

Teacher: The big question is what does the Voice in ACIM say about it? This is another situation where various passages from the Course, taken in isolation, can support either side of the argument. For instance, quotes used by those who say nothing happened say the physical body is not eternal and “does not exist.” T-6.V.A.2 and “The world you see does not exist.” T-28.V.7. But what about you? Does it seem that you are here living on planet earth?

Student: Yes, it seems that way to me and everyone here.

Teacher: How could that be if you are not here?

Student: Here is a passage I’ve seen quoted. It says: “You dwell not here, but in eternity. You travel but in dreams, while safe at home.” T-13.VII.17

Teacher: Yes, the Course basically tells us we seem to be here because we “travel but in dreams.” In other words, it tells us that this world seems real because we dreamed it up, kind of like presented in some science fiction movies like the Matrix.

Student: I loved that movie.

Teacher: Tell me this. When Neo returned to the real world did anyone there declare Neo’s experience fighting Mr. Smith never happened?

Student: Not that I recall.

Teacher: Did you have a dream last night?

Student: Yes. I dreamed I was romancing this beautiful lady. It was a pleasant dream, unlike Neo’s.

Teacher: Did you actually have a dream then?

Student: I guess I would say yes.

Teacher: So, in what sense did the dream never happen?

Student: It didn’t happen in my waking world. I was kind of disappointed when I woke up and the lady was no longer by my side.

Teacher: So, it was as if the events of the dream never happened in this world, but it was a definite happening that you had the dream and the experience in the dream. Is that correct?

Student: I would have to agree.

Teacher: So, where is the true reality and the dream according to the Course?

Student: The true reality is the eternal world that we came from before the dream began. The dream is this temporary world in time and space that we perceive with the physical eyes.

Teacher: Would you say it is literally correct to say that your dream last night as well as your dream of this world never happened?

Student: I think it is misleading to claim this without explaining the point of reference. Even though my dream did not happen in this world, it is true that I had a dream. I would also think that even though this temporary world does not exist in the eternal world that it is still something that happened – just as my dream of the lady really happened here.

Teacher: Good point. So, even though your dream last night is not happening in this world – would you say it was a real experience?

Student: I’d have to say yes. It was an experience and I can still relive it in my mind.

Teacher: And how about your life here on earth? Discounting the fact that it is a dream, not existing in the waking state in heaven, how about your experience here? Have you had an experience or not?

Student: I’d have to say that I have had quite an experience and, dream or no dream, I’ve had a real experience. The problem is that the Course sometimes reads like nothing has happened and other times like something has happened. Can you shed some light here?

Teacher: The answer is quite simple. When you awaken from a nightmare you may have a sense of relief and exclaim, “Wow, I’m glad that never happened!” What are you really saying when you say this? Are you saying the dream never happened?

Student: No. I would be merely saying that the dream never happened in what we consider reality – our waking state.

Teacher: Does it make sense then that the Course is expressing a similar view when speaking of things in our world as not being real or never happening?

Student: That would make sense.

Teacher: The Course even speaks along these lines: “You recognize from your own experience that what you see in dreams you think is real while you are asleep. Yet the instant you waken you realize that everything that seemed to happen in the dream did not happen at all.” T-10.I.2

It didn’t happen at all in the waking state, but still a dream did happen.

Student: Have you found references from the Course that indicate something did happen concerning our world?

Teacher: Quite a few actually. The Course tells us the separation began with a mad idea and “the thought become a serious idea, and possible of both accomplishment and real effects.” T-27.VIII.6

Would you say that a mad idea capable of real effects is something that happened?

Student: One would think so.

Teacher: In addition, it says that “the separation occurred over millions of years.” T-2.VIII.2 To say something “occurred” is basically the same thing as saying something happened, is it not?

Student: I would think so.

Teacher: Then after this occurrence, or happening, God responded with a very significant creation. It is written that God created the “Holy Spirit, Who was God’s answer to the separation.” T-17.IV.4 “He has created the Holy Spirit as the Mediator between perception and knowledge.” W-pI.43.1

Would God have created the Holy Spirit in response to something that never happened?

Student: That wouldn’t make sense.

Teacher: Finally, we are told that the separation “shattered heaven.” T-18.I.12 One would think then that the separation was not only a happening, but must have been a very significant event to create such a disturbance.

Student: Must have been to have shattered heaven.

Teacher: To sum it up we can say that when the separation occurred that a good portion of the Sonship entered a dream state and when the Course speaks of things that are not real or didn’t happen it is speaking in relation to the eternal world.

Student: Yeah. Our conversation is happening in our world but is not seen as happening in heaven.

Teacher: The Course encapsulates our situation in this quote: “What you believe is true for you. In this sense the separation has occurred, and to deny it is merely to use denial inappropriately.” T-2.VII.5

Student: Sounds like we should not deny the separation, but understand it.

Teacher: Exactly.

Links to The Mysteries of A Course in Miracles:

Copyright by J J Dewey

Read the Introduction HERE, Read Chapter One HERE. Chapter Two HERE, Chapter Three HERE, Chapter Four HERE, Chapter Five HERE Chapter Six HERE, Chapter Seven HERE, Chapter Eight HERE, Chapter Nine HERE, Chapter Ten HERE, Chapter Eleven HERE, Chapter Twelve HERE, Chapter Thirteen HERE, Chapter Fourteen HERE, Fifteen HERE, Sixteen HERE, Seventeen HERE,       Eighteen HERE, Nineteen HERE, Twenty HERE, Twenty-One HERE, Twenty-Two HERE, Twenty-Three HERE, Twenty-Four HERE, Twenty-Five HERE, Twenty-Six HERE, Twenty-Seven  HERE, Twenty-Eight  HERE, Twenty-Nine HERE, Thirty HERE

ACIM Conversations, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part  16, Part 17, Part 18, Part 19, Part 20, Part 21, Part 22, Part 23, Part 24, Part 25

Index for Original Archives

Index for Recent Posts

Easy Access to All the Writings

For Free Book go HERE and other books HERE

JJ’s Amazon page HERE

Gather with JJ on Facebook HERE

ACIM Conversations, Part 5

ACIM Conversations, Part 5
Is Heaven on Earth?

Teacher: In our last discussion we established that there are two major steps given in the Course necessary to fully awaken and enter heaven. Step one is seeing the real world. Step two is when the Father takes us back home. What hurdles do we need overcome before we even enter the real world?

Student: Applying forgiveness is a big one. Also, we must overcome fear, grievances. We must be willing to see Christ within our brothers, as well as ourselves, and the oneness of all life. It seems that there are quite a few steps, or hurdles as you say.

Teacher: It seems you have missed the most important and first step. Can you tell me what it is?

Student: Can’t think of anything more important than forgiveness which is stressed by the Course.

Teacher: But will you apply anything in the Course if you do not want to investigate the meaning of life?

Student: I think I see what you are getting at. The first step is asking questions about our true nature.

Teacher: Yes. We are told “the purpose of this course is to help you remember what you are… the reason for the course is that you do not know what you are.” T-9.I.2

If we do not ask this question then we will never get to the other steps or even take the Course.

Student: I’m confused over the idea that we need to take all these steps to get to heaven if we are already there as some think.

Teacher: Have you noticed that there are two groups who think we are already in heaven – those who think we experience heaven on earth and those who say we never left?

Student: I have and it hurts my brain considering some of the paradoxical discussions around these things.

Teacher: Let us explore the mystery and start with the first one. Why do you suppose that many think we can be in heaven right here on earth while still in bodies?

Student: The Course makes it sound that way in the passages previously quoted such as: “Heaven is here. There is nowhere else. Heaven is now. There is no other time.” M-24.6

Teacher: To resolve these passages that seem to contradict the student must realize that sometimes the Voice speaks from the view of the eternal world and other times, for the sake of communication, it speaks from our point of view on this world. Statements made from these two viewpoints can both be true, but appear to contradict.  Concerning your quote, one may assume it is spoken from the eternal view of the true reality.

From this view heaven is always here because only the real is here and our world does not even exist. There is nowhere that is not real. Heaven is now because from the eternal view there is no past or future nut only now. There is no other time because the present is the only time there is.

Student: So, heaven cannot be here on this earth because our world does not even exist in the true reality. Is that right?

Teacher: Yes and no.

Student: Now that’s the type of answer I was talking about that makes my brain hurt.

Teacher: I’ll try and go easy on your brain. While in this illusionary dream state we will not find heaven in what appears to be outside of us anywhere on earth or in any object. That’s like trying to find God in an idol, like the golden calf. But while residing on earth there is a place we can look to find heaven. Where do you suppose that would be?

Student:  Jesus said the Kingdom of God is within. It is stated in the Bible and affirmed in the Course.

Teacher: The Course makes numerous statements to the effect that we have heaven and divinity within us such as:

“The Christ in you inhabits not a body. Yet He is in you. And thus it must be that you are not within a body.” T-25.in.1

“Do not try to look beyond yourself for truth, for truth can only be within you. Say, therefore: Christ is in me, and where He is God must be, for Christ is part of Him.” T-9.I.14

So, the truth, Christ, God and the Holy Spirit are all found within but it tells us they not within the body. Where are they?

Student: That’s an interesting question because when one thinks of going within the tendency is to focus within the body

Teacher: Indeed. But the body is merely a projection of our thought so we do not want to go within the projected image but we want the real thing instead. What is that?

Student: The real part of our self is one with Christ so I guess it just means to focus on your divine mind and all is available.

Teacher: Technically, “within” may not be accurate, but it is probably the best word to use to direct our focus. In reality, our true self is one with all there is and it may be more correct to say we need to look beyond this world to the true reality.

Student: So, when I look beyond the illusion to my true self am I then in heaven?

Teacher: Have you tried to do this?

Student: Yes.

Teacher: And did you find heaven?

Student: I’m not sure, but I found a really nice peace and sense of oneness.

Teacher: Did you feel that you had reached the ultimate state of existence?

Student: It felt heavenly, but I also felt there was more. Much more actually. It seems there is something beyond a normal consciousness.

Teacher: Now read this passage:

Student reads: “It is impossible to see two worlds which have no overlap of any kind. Seek for the one; the other disappears. But one remains. They are the range of choice beyond which your decision cannot go. The real and the unreal are all there are to choose between, and nothing more than these.” W-pI.130.5

Teacher: There are two worlds. One is the world of illusion and the other is called heaven. Which do you see now?

Student: I see your body, which the Course says does not exist, so I suppose I am seeing the illusion.

Teacher: Yes, and I see your body so I am in the same situation. The Course says this: “The body stands between the Father and the Heaven.”  T-23.IV.7 As long as we see our bodies and this world instead of the heavenly, we are obviously not fully in heaven.

Student: You said “not fully.” Are you saying we are part way there?

Teacher: The honest seeker can catch a glimpse of heaven in his quiet moments when he takes his attention off this world but then as he goes about his daily activities, he sees only this world though he can also have a sense of the peace of heaven.

Student: Sounds like seekers are having experiences in both worlds.

Teacher: Yes, when we begin to wake up it is like going outside and being aware of the sun overhead and how powerful it is. But compare that to being the sun which would be much more encompassing.

Student: So, you are saying we can get a sense of heaven while we live here and see this world, but it will be something else to leave this world and be fully awake.

Teacher: Yes. Here’s quote verifying that thought: “No one on earth can grasp what Heaven is, or what its one Creator really means.” M-23.6

So we can get a sense of heaven while here on earth but we cannot fully grasp what it is until we return.

Student: That is kind of what I felt in my highest spiritual moments, or my holy instant.

Links to The Mysteries of A Course in Miracles:

Copyright by J J Dewey

Read the Introduction HERE, Read Chapter One HERE. Chapter Two HERE, Chapter Three HERE, Chapter Four HERE, Chapter Five HERE Chapter Six HERE, Chapter Seven HERE, Chapter Eight HERE, Chapter Nine HERE, Chapter Ten HERE, Chapter Eleven HERE, Chapter Twelve HERE, Chapter Thirteen HERE, Chapter Fourteen HERE, Fifteen HERE, Sixteen HERE, Seventeen HERE,       Eighteen HERE, Nineteen HERE, Twenty HERE, Twenty-One HERE, Twenty-Two HERE, Twenty-Three HERE, Twenty-Four HERE, Twenty-Five HERE, Twenty-Six HERE, Twenty-Seven  HERE, Twenty-Eight  HERE, Twenty-Nine HERE, Thirty HERE

ACIM Conversations, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part  16, Part 17, Part 18, Part 19, Part 20, Part 21, Part 22, Part 23, Part 24, Part 25

Index for Original Archives

Index for Recent Posts

Easy Access to All the Writings

For Free Book go HERE and other books HERE

JJ’s Amazon page HERE

Gather with JJ on Facebook HERE

 

ACIM Conversations, Part 4

ACIM Conversations, Part 4
Two Steps to Heaven

The following represents a realistic discussion between an ACIM student and a more seasoned one we label “teacher.”

Student: I’ve encountered disagreement among students as to where or when heaven is entered. Some say we can be in heaven right here on the earth and others say we have to leave this earth behind to enter heaven.

Teacher: Do the ones who say heaven is here give any reference?

Student: They do. Here, I’ll read two of them to you.

“Atonement might be equated with total escape from the past and total lack of interest in the future. Heaven is here. There is nowhere else. Heaven is now. There is no other time.” M-24.6

“Heaven has come to earth at last, from which the ego’s rule has kept it out so long. Heaven has come because it found a home in your relationship on earth. And earth can hold no longer what has been given Heaven as its own.” T-21.IV.7

It does kind of sound like heaven is right here but there are other passages tell us we must leave the world behind. It’s quite confusing.

Teacher: This highlights the point we discussed about the importance of looking at the whole rather than the part as there are a number of times the Course does seem to say contradictory things but when examined in context with other text, we can see what the Voice is trying to say, and that there is no conflict.

What we need to do here is list the things said about heaven and our return that are clearly stated and not disputed and see what adds up. The Course speaks of two major steps necessary to arrive home. Can you name the first?

Student: There seems to be a lot of things like overcoming guilt and fear as well as learning to forgive to name a few.

Teacher: But there is one major one we must achieve.

Student: Would that be the real world?

Teacher: That is correct. Before we fully enter heaven we must overcome the hurdles you mention and more until we see the real world. And what is the real world?

Student: From what I have read it is a higher reality between heaven and earth – sort of a bridge.

Teacher: Yes. Here is what the Course specifically says: It describes it as “a borderland of thought that 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.” T-26.III.3

So what is the real world according to this?

Student: A borderland between this world and heaven.

Teacher: Does this tell us that if we are in this world, or even the real world, we are not yet awakened and fully in heaven?

Student: Seems to. A bridge to a place is not the place itself.

Teacher: And what do we have to accomplish to enter the real world?

Student: According to that text we will see beyond illusions to the truth.

Teacher: And a part of this seeing is described here: “You will begin to understand it when you have seen little edges of light around the same familiar objects which you see now. That is the beginning of real vision. You can be certain that real vision will come quickly when this has occurred.” W-pI.15.2

That real vision spoken us enables us to see the true light behind the illusion here and discern the real from the unreal.

If you become centered on the real world, are you then in heaven or still on earth?

Student: From what I have read it seems we are still here on earth in our bodies, but we just see things clearly. Perhaps we are in that happy dream the Course speaks of.

Teacher: Yes the Course tells us that “the real world is the second part of the hallucination.” (T-26.V.12) and this:

“The real world still is but a dream. Except the figures have been changed. They are not seen as idols which betray. It is a dream in which no one is used to substitute for something else, nor interposed between the thoughts the mind conceives and what it sees.” T-29.IX.7

So, are we still in the dream?

Student: It appears so but just the second stage before entering heaven

Teacher: And what is the third and final stage?

Student: It is said that the Father will take the final step when we are ready.

Teacher: Yes, it is written that “When you perceive yourself without deceit, you will accept the real world in place of the false one you have made. And then your Father will lean down to you and take the last step for you, by raising you unto Himself.” T-11.VIII.15

Would you say then that we are not fully out of the illusion and in heaven until this last step is taken?

Student:  It would appear so. Why would we have to take two major steps to enter heaven if we are already there? But what I do not understand is why many think we are already in heaven when it clearly says we have two major steps to go to arrive there?

Teacher: That’s a great question which we shall deal with next.

Links to The Mysteries of A Course in Miracles:

Copyright by J J Dewey

Read the Introduction HERE, Read Chapter One HERE. Chapter Two HERE, Chapter Three HERE, Chapter Four HERE, Chapter Five HERE Chapter Six HERE, Chapter Seven HERE, Chapter Eight HERE, Chapter Nine HERE, Chapter Ten HERE, Chapter Eleven HERE, Chapter Twelve HERE, Chapter Thirteen HERE, Chapter Fourteen HERE, Fifteen HERE, Sixteen HERE, Seventeen HERE,       Eighteen HERE, Nineteen HERE, Twenty HERE, Twenty-One HERE, Twenty-Two HERE, Twenty-Three HERE, Twenty-Four HERE, Twenty-Five HERE, Twenty-Six HERE, Twenty-Seven  HERE, Twenty-Eight  HERE, Twenty-Nine HERE, Thirty HERE

ACIM Conversations, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part  16, Part 17, Part 18, Part 19, Part 20, Part 21, Part 22, Part 23, Part 24, Part 25

Index for Original Archives

Index for Recent Posts

Easy Access to All the Writings

For Free Book go HERE and other books HERE

JJ’s Amazon page HERE

Gather with JJ on Facebook HERE

ACIM Conversations, Part 3

ACIM Conversations, Part 3
Resolving Disagreements

Student: I’ve noticed that when two have a heated disagreement about the meaning of the Course that no one ever admits to being in the ego. Almost all seem to think that their thinking is endorsed by the Holy Spirit.

Teacher: Yes, the ego never wants to reveal itself unless it furthers its cause.

Student: Is there anything that those who are in disagreement can do to bring oneness?

Teacher: They can prayerfully or in meditation present their disagreement together to the Holy Spirit and in silence wait for a response

Student: That sounds right but when a good argument gets going the students do not seem to be in the mood for such a suggestion. Is there anything else they can do?

Teacher: When the emotions are not at peace during an argument then the ego is in control and they will not consider resolving the problem through the peace of the Spirit. The Course asks: “Do you prefer that you be right or happy?” T-29.VII.1 Many do not want their feeling of being right disturbed by the peace of the Holy Spirit.

On the other hand, there is something else they can do. What do most students feel that the Holy Spirit has verified to them?

Student: Probably the Course itself.

Teacher: And that makes the Course the second highest authority for them while they are in this world. But what should be their highest authority?

Student: I would suppose that would be their direct connection to God, the Holy Spirit.

Teacher: Exactly. But since many in disagreement are unwilling or unable to allow the Spirit to resolve their differences the Course itself provides the next best course of action. Why do you suppose the Course is inferior to the Holy Spirit in resolving differences?

Student: The Holy Spirit gives us a complete picture that doesn’t need interpretation, whereas the written word is subject to numerous interpretations.

Teacher: Exactly. The interference of the ego causes most of those who are both in the Spirit and the ego to resort to the written word, perception and interpretation in their discussions. But we must always remember this: having an inspired written word is much better than nothing at all. Just think of the millions who have read A Course in Miracles and have made a step or two toward greater enlightenment.

Student: That includes me. I know I have a ways to go yet, but it has definitely made me aware of the problems to awakening that we face.

Teacher: So, if our best immediate tool to solve differences is the Course what is the best way to use it?

Student: If you believe the Course is in harmony with your belief then there should be passages that agree with you.

Teacher: This is true. I’m sure you have seen arguments between students who each quote passages supporting their view from the Course, yet cannot reach agreement. Why do you suppose that two knowledgeable students may not be able to reach unity?

Student: I’m sure that bias enters in, but I can see that many arguments are quite vague, so overcoming the bias becomes impossible.

Teacher: So, what do you see as some of the problems with the various presentations?

Student: A common one I see is that some will quote a large amount of material thinking that will prove their view to be correct. When I read that over I can usually find nothing specific that even addresses the argument.

Teacher: Yes. This is the shotgun approach of the ego. Throw a lot of information out there and claim proof is in there somewhere. Anything else?

Student: Others give quotes that seem to have little or nothing to do with the subject of the disagreement. That doesn’t seem productive.

Teacher: This and your last point illustrates the strategy of the ego: “Its dictates, then, can be summed up simply as: ‘Seek and do not find.’ This is the one promise the ego holds out to you, and the one promise it will keep.” T-12.IV.1

Student: Could we say then that answers from the ego are designed to not find the truth?

Teacher: Indeed. One of the prime tactics of the ego is to avoid being specific. It loves to argue with generalities.

Student: One thing I see in that direction is students sometimes will just declare that “Love is the answer” when love has little to do with the subject at hand.

Teacher: Yes. That answer always sounds good but, in many cases, it supports the confusion endorsed by the ego. What else have you noticed about unresolved disagreements?

Student: Sometimes two knowledgeable students disagree and do quote specific passages on the subject, but continue to disagree because one text seems to disagree with another. For instance, one may believe there is only one Son of God and another believe there are many and both have quotes to back them up.

Teacher: You just pointed out a prime tactic of the ego as noted here: “the ego attacks everything it perceives by breaking it into small, disconnected parts, without meaningful relationships and therefore without meaning. The ego will always substitute chaos for meaning, for if separation is salvation, harmony is threat.” T-11.V.13

Instead of examining the text that seems to be contradictory and looking for the harmony the ego breaks it down and picks a side. It figures that there is either one Son or many and chooses with black and white thinking. In the end, both students could be following the ego in this argument.

Here is what the Voice said about this problem:

“You may believe from time to time that I am misdirecting you. I have made every effort to use words that are almost impossible to distort, but it is always possible to twist symbols around if you wish.” T-3.I.3

Student: It does seem that a lot of students do twist the words around. What would one following the Holy Spirit do?

Teacher: He would figure that since ACIM is inspired that there would be truth in both statements and study them in context. In this case, he would realize there is one Son but with many parts and see that the one and the many is not a contradiction. He finds he does not have to pick a side.

Student: Then there are teachings that are almost impossible to distort, like your quote says

Teacher: But never underestimate the ego’s determination to create confusion.

Student: So is there any value then in two or more students discussing a disagreement in ACIM?

Teacher: Yes. Outside of the Holy Spirit this and pure reasoning are the only tools we have for students to reach oneness which is one of the main goals of the Course.

A civil discussion of opposing views can have a number of benefits. Here are three:

[1] Generally, neither party will claim victory nor admit they were in error but later in quiet moments one may sense the Holy Spirit confirming to him a truth in the other guy’s presentation and come to change his mind.

[2] Sometimes a discussion will bring up a quote that one did not realize was even in the Course and this will alter his thinking. Most who read the text for a second or third time will be amazed at how much is in there that he did not see in his first reading. Some students see things that others miss so sharing of any kind can be helpful if it is civil.

[3] Even if the two having the disagreement do not make any progress, the exchange may bring light to observers. Have you had that happen when observing a heated exchange in a discussion?

Student: Yes, I have. Often the two are of the same opinion still but the dialog gave me a lot to think about.

Teacher: So, let us conclude with this statement. Doing something to take us to unity, however flawed, is better than doing nothing.

Student: Agreed. If we take no steps to fully understand the Course, we may be caught up in the illusion indefinitely.

Copyright by J J Dewey

Read the Introduction HERE, Read Chapter One HERE. Chapter Two HERE, Chapter Three HERE, Chapter Four HERE, Chapter Five HERE Chapter Six HERE, Chapter Seven HERE, Chapter Eight HERE, Chapter Nine HERE, Chapter Ten HERE, Chapter Eleven HERE, Chapter Twelve HERE, Chapter Thirteen HERE, Chapter Fourteen HERE, Fifteen HERE, Sixteen HERE, Seventeen HERE,       Eighteen HERE, Nineteen HERE, Twenty HERE, Twenty-One HERE, Twenty-Two HERE, Twenty-Three HERE, Twenty-Four HERE, Twenty-Five HERE, Twenty-Six HERE, Twenty-Seven  HERE, Twenty-Eight  HERE, Twenty-Nine HERE, Thirty HERE

ACIM Conversations, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part  16, Part 17, Part 18, Part 19, Part 20, Part 21, Part 22, Part 23, Part 24, Part 25

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ACIM Conversations, Part 2

ACIM Conversations, Part 2
The Ego and the Spirit

Student: In our last conversation we concluded we either follow the ego or the Holy Spirit, and if two disagree on teachings then one or both of them are in the ego. Let us suppose that one follows the ego and the other the Holy Spirit. How would you tell which is which?

Teacher: Tell me. What is the difference between the feelings generated by the two?

Student: The Course tells us that fear, hate, guilt, grievances, attack and lack of peace come from the ego. By contrast, feelings associated with the Holy Spirit are peace, love, joy, unity and probably more. I guess you could say negative feelings are associated with the ego and the positive ones with the Spirit.

Teacher: So, if you observe these two people for a while do you think it would become obvious as to which one has the peace of the Spirit and which has the negativity of the ego?

Student: One would think that would be the case.

Teacher: Here is another clue from the Course: “The Holy Spirit uses logic as easily and as well as does the ego, except that His conclusions are not insane.” T-14.in.1

This makes the interesting statement that both use logic. Therefore, a bystander who is listening may see the logic displayed on both sides and may not be  able  to conclude who is correct.  But then the quote tells us a distinctive difference. What is that?

Student: The conclusions of the ego are insane and those of the Holy Spirit are not.

Teacher: Exactly. If one can identify with the pure reasoning of the Spirit, he will see the conclusions that make sense and know they are on the side of the Spirit. We could go into many differences between the Ego and the Spirit but this will suffice for this discussion. So, what do we look for in those who are following the Holy Spirit?

Student: Positive feelings of peace and oneness as well as coming to sensible conclusions when using logic.

Teacher: Have you noticed that the one who is furthest from peace seems to come to the most illogical conclusions?

Student: Yes. They both may make logical presentations but some pretty wild conclusions are reached and the worst part is the separation between the conclusions is often great.

Teacher: A good example of this is the current rise in the belief that the earth is flat. There is a lot of discussion going on as to whether or not this is true. Now the average person may not think the flat earth person has any logic at all in his thinking but he would be wrong. If you watch their videos and discussions, you will see many logical and true points presented only to reach the insane conclusion that the earth is flat. Can you see that this is what the ego does on any subject that furthers its cause?

Student: Yes, I’ve seen it with Course students. Sometimes pretty wild and illogical conclusions are reached that are not in harmony with the Course.

Teacher: In a discussion of the Course where there is disagreement what do you suppose is the most obvious giveaway of who is in the ego?

Student: An insane conclusion.

Teacher: That will occur but I’m talking about what happens during the actual discussion.

Student: A lack of peace.

Teacher: Have you ever heard a serious ACIM student admit that he lacks peace?

Student: Rarely, if ever.

Teacher: Yes. Because of the Course’s stress on peace no serious student wants to admit that he lacks it as that would be like admitting that the ego has control, but he does show his lack of peace in an obvious way. Any idea what it is?

Student: Perhaps it is anger.

Teacher: Again, this is something that the ego does not want to reveal, as it tells everyone that he is not one with the Holy Spirit. Think again. What do you see revealed in discussions where the ego is in control?

Student: I’ve noticed that the one with the weakest case seems to start attacking and judging the other person.

Teacher: Good. That is it exactly! Attacks and negative judgments are easy to justify. If questioned the guy will just say that he was speaking the truth and there’s nothing wrong with speaking the truth. 

Student: Can you give me an example?

Teacher: The one in the Spirit makes his case to the point where the truth should be obvious. The one in the ego will not admit he is wrong and instead accuses the other guy of bring in the ego and arguing from the ego refusing to admit he is wrong.

Student: That’s almost funny. The guy in the ego portrays the other as being in the ego.

Teacher: Yes. This often happens. The ego when cornered will reflect its own imperfections on to the other person. Can you recall other accusations you have heard?

Student: Sometimes they fly rather freely when an argument gets started. I’ve seen the main guy who is in the attack mode accuse the other guy of being the attacker.

Teacher: This is the mirroring of the ego I was talking about. Anything else?

Student: Accusations of hypocrisy and lying are common and occasionally there will be accusations of intolerance, hate, ignorance and so on.

Teacher: Yes, accusations of hypocrisy and lying are high on the list, but when the ego superiority is challenged, it will attack to the maximum amount possible while trying not to expose itself.

Student: Anything else I should look for?

Teacher: The ego reveals itself in many subtle ways but I’ll point out one more that it often uses and that is playing the victim. He will complain of hurt feelings or being justly offended because of something said. The one in the Spirit is virtually impervious to being offended or hurt through a mere exchange of words. Then the crazy part is the one who is offended will often accuse the other guy of being the one who is offended.

Student: It sounds like the ego is a master of confusion and manipulation.

Teacher: Indeed, it is.

Student: So, what is the difference when two who are in the ego have a disagreement?

Teacher: When two egos have a disagreement there is great confusion for neither understands the other, and both wind up attacking in some manner and being offended. It is interesting to note though that one in the ego is often more offended at one in the Spirit than another in the ego. Darkness hates the light more than additional darkness.

Student: How about two that are listening to the Holy Spirit? Do they ever disagree?

Teacher: Normally they will see eye to eye and understand each other. However, because of the imperfections of communicating with language and different backgrounds there may seem to be surface disagreements at times but when they get together and discuss them, they will do so in a friendly spirit without attacking each other and in the end see the other’s point of view and understand it.

Student: Would you say that we are examples of two in the Spirit having a conversation?

Teacher: Yes. We both do our best to receive guidance from the Spirit but we have different degrees of investment in absorbing A Course in Miracles. But notice that we are resolving our differences of understanding and coming to agreement.

Student: Yes, and it feels good to the Spirit in my inner core.

Teacher: And if we both stay in contact with that Spirit our conversations here will bear much fruit.

Copyright by J J Dewey

Read the Introduction HERE, Read Chapter One HERE. Chapter Two HERE, Chapter Three HERE, Chapter Four HERE, Chapter Five HERE Chapter Six HERE, Chapter Seven HERE, Chapter Eight HERE, Chapter Nine HERE, Chapter Ten HERE, Chapter Eleven HERE, Chapter Twelve HERE, Chapter Thirteen HERE, Chapter Fourteen HERE, Fifteen HERE, Sixteen HERE, Seventeen HERE,       Eighteen HERE, Nineteen HERE, Twenty HERE, Twenty-One HERE, Twenty-Two HERE, Twenty-Three HERE, Twenty-Four HERE, Twenty-Five HERE, Twenty-Six HERE, Twenty-Seven  HERE, Twenty-Eight  HERE, Twenty-Nine HERE, Thirty HERE

ACIM Conversations, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part  16, Part 17, Part 18, Part 19, Part 20, Part 21, Part 22, Part 23, Part 24, Part 25

Index for Original Archives

Index for Recent Posts

Easy Access to All the Writings

For Free Book go HERE and other books HERE

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The Mysteries of A Course in Miracles, Part II

The Mysteries of A Course in Miracles, Part II

ACIM Conversations, Part 1

The following represents conversations between an ACIM student and a knowledgeable teacher.

The Key to Unity

Student: I have read through the text and most of the lessons and I still feel like a babe in the woods. I’ve been communicating with a number of other students, some of whom have studied the Course for decades. What I find confusing is that some of them come up with rather strange conclusions that do not make sense to me and many do not agree with each other. How am I to know what to believe when even dedicated students disagree with each other?

Teacher: Many look to others as a source of true interpretation of the Course. Do you know what the Course says you are choosing when you do this?

Student: Not sure.

Teacher: Idols.

Student: You mean idols like the golden calf in the days of Moses?

Teacher: The golden calf was a substitute for God and anything that we accept as a source above that which comes from God is a substitute and therefore an idol, or a creation of the ego. Here read this passage.

Student: He reads: “You will not make decisions by yourself whatever you decide. For they are made with idols or with God. And you ask help of anti-Christ or Christ, and which you choose will join with you and tell you what to do.” T-30.I.14

Teacher: Note that we follow either idols or God or the Christ or the anti-Christ. Here’s a similar passage:

“The Holy Spirit and the ego are the only choices open to you.” T-5.V.6

And where is it that we find the true God, Christ or Holy Spirit?

Student: Within ourselves.

Teacher: And if two people look within past the outward idols to the true God will they get different answers and disagree or the same answer?

Student: You’d think they would get the same answer.

Teacher: And if they do not get the same answer what does that tell us?

Student: It would seem that one or both of them are not receiving from the true Source. Is it really possible for two different people to get the same answer?

Teacher: Let’s see what the Course says. Read this:

Student: “The Holy Spirit’s goal gives one interpretation, meaningful to you and to your brother.” T-30.VII.6.

Teacher: So if two receive from the Holy Spirit how many interpretations will they receive?

Student: It seems to say they would just receive one. I wonder if that is really possible when you consider all the disagreement among students.

Teacher: Is contact and reception from the Holy Spirit possible?

Student: I think so and it appears that even the students who are disagreeing think they are in contact.

Teacher: Yet when this happens one or both must be in error as you say. What causes this error?

Student: It would seem that the ego would play a big role.

Teacher: The Course agrees with you. Read this:

Student: “The Holy Spirit is One, and anyone who listens is inevitably led to demonstrate His way for all…  The ego is legion, but the Holy Spirit is One.” T-6.I.10

Teacher: So, what would be he difference between those who receive from the Holy Spirit and the ego.

Student: Those who receive from the Holy Spirit would be united in thought whereas there would be a legion of opinions among those in the ego. Does this mean that those in contact with the Holy Spirit will agree on everything, like the best flavor of ice cream or the best sports team?

Teacher: The Course says that “The Holy Spirit will answer every specific problem.” T-11.VIII.3 Notice that it uses  the word problem. Something becomes a problem when it increases the feeling of separation. Do you see it as a problem that a friend would like a different flavor of ice cream than yourself?

Student: Not at all.

Teacher: Yet have you found problems surfacing in group discussions among students who disagree on what the Course teaches?

Student: I have seen a number of problems, especially concerning negative judgments that surface, definitely some dislike and some even demanding offensive ones be thrown off the discussion group or at least censored.

Teacher: These and other disagreements can increase feelings of separation and it is here that the Holy Spirit will come when invited and bring unity.

The Course gives us powerful guidance on this in this quote:

“Everything you behold without is a judgment of what you beheld within. If it is your judgment it will be wrong, for judgment is not your function. If it is the judgment of the Holy Spirit it will be right, for judgment is His function. You share His function only by judging as He does, reserving no judgment at all for yourself.”  T-12.VII.12

So what does it tell us about relying on our judgment, or we could say the ego’s judgment?

Student: It says we will be wrong. If we want to be right, we listen to the Holy Spirit.

Teacher: So, if two people disagree to the point of separation then one of both of them are listening to the ego. Would you agree?

Student: Sounds right.

Teacher: Why are judgments of truth made without the Holy Spirit always wrong?

Student: I’m not sure.

Teacher: Suppose someone gives you a jigsaw puzzle and it lacks the finished picture. You pick up a couple pieces and look at them. Do you think that you can establish the truth of the whole picture this way?

Student: I doubt it.

Teacher: That is the disadvantage of judging from the ego. Even if you are sincere you cannot see the whole picture, a little like the story of the three blind men and the elephant.

Student: Makes sense.

Teacher: On the other hand, the Holy Spirit sees the whole picture and when we allow Him to share it with us this give us power to make correct judgments. If you and I see the same picture we are not likely to disagree with what is in it. 

Student: Good point. You make oneness sound easy and it probably should be easy but I keep wondering why there is so much disagreement and conflict between students, and even some teachers, and what we can do about it.

Teacher: Good thought my friend, and we’ll talk about that when we continue this conversation.

Copyright by J J Dewey

Read the Introduction HERE, Read Chapter One HERE. Chapter Two HERE, Chapter Three HERE, Chapter Four HERE, Chapter Five HERE Chapter Six HERE, Chapter Seven HERE, Chapter Eight HERE, Chapter Nine HERE, Chapter Ten HERE, Chapter Eleven HERE, Chapter Twelve HERE, Chapter Thirteen HERE, Chapter Fourteen HERE, Fifteen HERE, Sixteen HERE, Seventeen HERE,       Eighteen HERE, Nineteen HERE, Twenty HERE, Twenty-One HERE, Twenty-Two HERE, Twenty-Three HERE, Twenty-Four HERE, Twenty-Five HERE, Twenty-Six HERE, Twenty-Seven  HERE, Twenty-Eight  HERE, Twenty-Nine HERE, Thirty HERE

ACIM Conversations, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part  16, Part 17, Part 18, Part 19, Part 20, Part 21, Part 22, Part 23, Part 24, Part 25

Index for Original Archives

Index for Recent Posts

Easy Access to All the Writings

For Free Book go HERE and other books HERE

JJ’s Amazon page HERE

Gather with JJ on Facebook HERE

 

The Mysteries of A Course in Miracles, Chapter 28

 

Translating into Oneness

Let us now examine some of the basic teachings of ACIM and the Ancient Wisdom and see how compatible they are with each other. In doing this we will focus on the writings of various books by Alice A. Bailey and the main work of Helena P. Blavatsky – The Secret Doctrine.

Let us start with God as the Source of all things. Here is a passage giving the ultimate description of God often quoted from the Course:

“Oneness is simply the idea God is. And in His Being, He encompasses all things. No mind holds anything but Him. We say ‘God is,’ and then we cease to speak, for in that knowledge words are meaningless.” W-pI.169.5

Then from the Bailey writings we have this:

“God is not this; God is not that; God is no-thing; God is neither time nor space; God is not feeling or thought; God is not form or substance. God simply IS. God IS—apart from all expression and manifestation as the Manipulator of energy.” Glamour, A World Problem, Page 244

ACIM says that “God is an idea” and, concerning His relationship with this world, states:

“The world as you perceive it cannot have been created by the Father, for the world is not as you see it. God created only the eternal, and everything you see is perishable.” T-11.VII.1

H. P. Blavatsky said something very similar:

“Of tribal Gods there were many; the One Universal Deity is a principle, an abstract Root-Idea which has naught to do with the unclean work of finite Form. We do not worship the Gods, we only honour Them, as beings superior to ourselves.” Secret Doctrine, Vol 1, Page 492

She thus agrees that the “Universal Deity” (the Father in ACIM) is “Root-Idea which has naught to do with the unclean work of finite Form,” but there are advanced beings some call gods or masters that we honor.

She also wrote this:

“The Monad (our divine self) is impersonal and a god per se, albeit unconscious on this plane… it can have no consciousness or perception of things on this earthly plane. “The highest sees through the eye of the lowest” in the manifested world; Purusha (Spirit) remains blind without the help of Prakrit (matter) in the material spheres.” Secret Doctrine, Vol 2, Page 123

This harmonizes with ACIM which says:

You dwell not here, but in eternity. You travel but in dreams, while safe at home.” T-13.VII.17

“Perception did not exist until the separation introduced degrees, aspects and intervals” T-3.IV.1

The basic teachings concerning the Trinity are in agreement. Both teach that all came from the initiating Father. Both teach that there are three parts to the Godhead: The Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

The Ancient Wisdom says the Son “the second aspect of divinity, that which builds and holds the forms in coherent form, and which is the basis of the phenomenon we call time.” Treatise on Cosmic Fire, Page 1032

This agrees with ACIM, which tells us the Son created (or made) the universe of time and Space.

The Ancient Wisdom identifies the Holy Spirit as the Third Aspect that represents intelligence in matter, providing a link between the material world and the spiritual.

ACIM says something similar:

“The Holy Spirit mediates higher to lower communication, keeping the direct channel from God to you open for revelation.” T-1.II.5

Most spiritual traditions present a teaching related to the fall of humanity from some high or spiritual estate to a fallen earthly one. The story of the fall of Adam and Eve in Genesis is well known to many in the West.

ACIM places quite a different twist on this than orthodox Christianity. It tells us that the fall was not Adam falling out of grace with the creator of the physical universe, but it was the Creator (or Maker) Itself who fell or separated Itself from the true Creator.

And who was this creator who fell? It was all of us who have taken incarnation. We are all a part of the Divine Son who separated ourselves from our true spiritual home. The purpose of ACIM is to lead us back to our Source.

The Course’s view on this is quite close to ancient Gnosticism, which at one time was competing with the standard Christian view for dominance.

The Gnostics viewed the creator of the physical universe as an entity who rebelled against the true God and tried to create a kingdom for himself outside the boundaries of heaven. They called this being a Demiurge, a false God closely linked to the common view of Satan.

ACIM presents a softer view of this fallen deity. It tells us that the beloved Son (representing all of us) of the true Creator had fallen asleep and made an illusion into which he was trapped. The Beloved Son was not evil, but merely misled and will at one time awaken to his true nature ad reality. God does not see his Son as being evil any more than a parent does a child having a bad dream.

The idea that we were Sons of God who were one with God who fell into illusion is harmonious with the Ancient Wisdom:

These fallen ones “separated themselves from their parent essence, or, in other words, after the unit had become a multiple, after differentiation and manifestation. …They are not “demons commissioned to create and organize this visible universe,” but fashioners (the “architects”) of the worlds, and the progenitors of man. They are the Fallen angels, metaphorically — “the true mirrors of the Eternal Wisdom.” Secret Doctrine, Vol 2, Page 516

“In ancient Accadian days, this sign Aries was called that “wherein the sacrifice of righteousness was made,” or the sign of “the fallen angels”. The sons of God, impelled by this basic urge, fell from their high estate, took form, and started upon their individual round upon round of the Zodiac.” The Labours of Hercules, Page 33

“The history begins by the descent on Earth of the “Gods” who incarnate in mankind, and this is the FALL.” Secret Doctrine, Vol 2, Page 483

The Book of Revelation describes war in heaven in which a third fell to the earth. The general interpretation is that these are the invisible Satan and his evil denizens who tempt us toward evil.

The Ancient Wisdom agrees with ACIM that it was us who fell to the earth and are incarnated into physical bodies:

“The ‘third part of the stars of heaven’ cast down to the earth — refers to the divine Monads,… the human Egos destined to perform the whole cycle of incarnations.” Secret Doctrine, Vol 2, Page 485

ACIM tells us that the whole world we perceive with our physical senses is an illusion that is not real, but compared to something dreamed up by the mind.

The Ancient Wisdom says something similar:

“You will note that these words ‘in time and space’ have repeatedly recurred in this instruction. Why is this? Because it must constantly be remembered that we are living in the world of illusion—an illusion which is temporary and transient and which will some day disappear, taking with it the illusion of appearance, the illusion of evolutionary unfoldment, the illusion of separativeness, and the illusion of distinctive identity—that illusion which makes us say ‘I am.’” Education in the New Age Pg 25

ACIM tells us that our physical bodies in which we seem to dwell is an illusion. The Ancient Wisdom says this:

“It must ever be remembered that from the point of view of Reality what we call the dense physical body, tangible and objective, is but an illusion. We are told again and again in the ancient writings that it is not a principle. Why is this so? Because it is only an appearance … and this appearance is a fiction or a figment of the human mind. I speak not in parable.” A Treatise on White Magic, Page 550

ACIM places a lot of emphasis on forgiveness, love, peace, sharing and other virtues as essential to liberation. Almost every other spiritual tradition, including orthodox religion, does this also. The Course does, however, direct us in how to achieve these, especially centering on forgiveness. It tells us that we must understand that this world is an illusion and being such, there is nothing to forgive.

The Ancient Wisdom teaches something similar. It tells us that the world is an illusion and to neutralize its effect we should obtain the viewpoint of the observer. This entails looking at your life as if you are a character in a movie you are watching, but you are not affected because it is not true reality.

Here are a couple quotes on this principle:

“The essential attitude for you to cultivate is that of the One Who looks on, that of the Beholder, the Perceiver, and the Observer, leading—upon the Path of Discipleship—to that of the Interpreter.” Discipleship in the New Age: Vol I, Page 442

“The lower forms are constantly and ceaselessly active, endlessly assuming the forms of impulsive desires or dynamic mental thought forms, and it is only as this ‘form-taking’ is controlled and the tumult of the lower nature stilled that it becomes possible for the inner ruling entity to liberate himself from thraldom and impose his vibration upon the lower modifications.

“This is achieved through concentration – the concentrated effort of the soul to hold steadily the position of observer, or perceiver and of seer. When he can do this the lower ‘spectacle’ of the rapidly changing forms of thought and desire fades away, and the realm of the soul, the true field of soul knowledge, can be seen and contacted.”      The Light of the Soul, Page 13

Another teaching where there is harmonious overlap is in the joining of minds which will give us greater insight into the kingdom of God and speed our journey to liberation.

This joining of minds is an important quality expected from spiritual teachers according to ACIM:

“What does it matter if they then appear in many forms? Their minds are one; their joining is complete. And God works through them now as one, for that is what they are.” M-12.2

“Alone they are nothing. But in their joining is the power of God.” M-26.1

This joining of minds principle applies to all:

“Each of us is the light of the world, and by joining our minds in this light we proclaim the Kingdom of God together and as one.” T-6.II.13

The Course places a lot of emphasis on the idea that we need to unite and share in consciousness.

“Alone we can do nothing, but together our minds fuse into something whose power is far beyond the power of its separate parts. By not being separate, the Mind of God is established in ours and as ours. This Mind is invincible because it is undivided.” T-8.V.1

“The Kingdom cannot be found alone, and you who are the Kingdom cannot find yourself alone.” T-8.III.6.

The Ancient Wisdom gives out similar teachings but with a little different terminology, placing emphasis on obtaining oneness within groups.

“Where true identity is achieved, there is no sense of this and that; where the merging is complete, there is no recognition of individual activity within the group, because the will of the merged soul is identical with that of the group and automatic in its working; where true unity is present, the individual applicant becomes only a channel for the group will and activity, and this with no effort of his own but simply as a spontaneous reaction.” Rays and Initiations, Page 168

“The energy of the unit is absorbed by the entire group and the group output in service is thereby increased. The group is then enabled to shift to a higher plane of service and of consciousness. Ponder on this.” Discipleship in the New Age, Vol 1, Page 578

“The interaction between the individualised Selves will result in the merging to perfection of the flame within each one, and a blending of the heat; this will proceed until there is “one flame with countless sparks” within it, until the heat is general and balanced. When this is the case and each Son of God is a perfected Sun, characterised by perfectly expressed light and heat, then the entire solar system, the greater Son of God, will be the perfected Sun. The system will then be characterised by a “blaze of refulgent glory,” and by a radiation that will link it up with its cosmic centre, and thus effect the liberation of the Son, and His return to the far distant source from whence the primal impulse originated.” Treatise on Cosmic Fire, Pages 228-229

We see then that both teachings tell us that there has to be a joining of minds to experience the kingdom of God. We cannot go home alone.

Both teachings give a similar account of our journey from our Source to this material world and then back again.

ACIM teaches that we began in a spiritual state beyond time and space called heaven. We lived there as part of a unity call the Sons of God. We decided to separate and descended to this illusion/dream state. When we awaken, we first become aware of the real world and finally we go back home.

The Ancient Wisdom teaches that we began as Monads, which it sometimes calls Sons of God. The Monads lived as one life in the unmanifest mind of God. Then many of them separated and descended into matter, which is the realm of illusion. We go through many lifetimes and finally awaken to the true reality sometimes called the kingdom of the soul, which is the same as the real world in ACIM. After this partial awakening we finally advance back to our true identity as Monads or Sons of God.

ACIM places a lot of emphasis on focusing within, sensing the Holy Spirit and following its guidance. It is our link with God and will guide us correctly until we return to our spiritual home.

The Ancient Wisdom teaches the same thing but with different language. Instead of using the term “Holy Spirit” it uses the word “soul”. Our souls are a higher part of ourselves that are connected to our Source through a spiritual link similar to the Holy Spirit of ACIM. When the seeker contacts and receives from the soul, he is said to receive “soul contact.” Often when ACIM uses the word soul it is referring to the monad of the Ancient Wisdom.

Both teachings support the doctrine of reincarnation. As discussed in a previous chapter, reincarnation is supported in the text of the Course as well as more personal communications to Helen.

Reincarnation is more of a core belief in the Ancient Wisdom and much is written about it.

Both teachings tell us that there is no eternal hell, and the main hell we have to deal with is right here on this earth. There is also no vicarious atonement, for we are saved by waking up to our true reality. We can, however, assist each other on the path back to Spirit.

Both sets of teachings view sin in a similar manner. They both see sin as merely errors that need corrected rather than there being a need to be punished through guilt. or other means.

What is interesting is that even the Bible, as it was originally written, does not offer the traditional view of Sin. That seems to have been added after Christianity became an established religion. As mentioned earlier, the word “sin” in the New Testament comes from the Greek word HAMARTANO which means “to miss the mark,” or simply to make a mistake. That Jesus saved us from our errors by revealing the path of correction is supported even in the Bible.

The two teachings give out a similar view of time. We have included in this volume a whole chapter dealing with ACIM and time. In a nutshell, these quotes summarize it:

“The present is the only time there is.” W-pI.164.1 “The only aspect of time that is eternal is now.” T-5.III.6 “there is no time.” T-27.VIII.6 and “Time is a trick, a sleight of hand, a vast illusion in which figures come and go as if by magic.” W-pI.158.3

Here are some quotes from the Bailey writings that are in alignment with the Course:

“To say that time is a succession of states of consciousness and that the present is lost in the past instantaneously, and merged in the future as it is experienced, is of small avail to the average student. To say that there is a time when sight is lost in vision, when the sum total of life anticipations are realized in a moment of accomplishment and that this persists for ever, and to point to a state of consciousness in which there is no sequence of events and no succession of realizations is to speak in a language of mystery. Yet so it is and will be. When the aspirant has reached his goal he knows the true significance of his immortality and the true nature of his liberation. Space and time become for him meaningless terms. The only true Reality is seen to be the great central life force, remaining unchanged and unmoved at the centre of the changing evanescent temporal forms.” Light of the Soul, Pages 366-367

“From the standpoint of the Eternal Now, none is greater nor less than another, for the last shall be first, and the first last. Out of manifestation time is not, and freed from objectivity states of consciousness are not.” Treatise on Cosmic Fire, Page 60

“Therefore, past, present and future are seen as one; the recognition of the Eternal Now is gradually developed from incarnation to incarnation and during the continuous process of rebirth.” Esoteric Healing, Page 496

“Where no physical brain exists, what humanity understands by time is nonexistent. The removal of the barriers of the form, stage by stage, brings an increasing realisation of the Eternal Now. In the case of those who have passed through the door of death and who still continue to think in terms of time, it is due to glamour and to the persistence of a powerful thoughtform.” Esoteric Healing, Page 403

It is too bad that few students of the Ancient Wisdom study ACIM and few Course students study the Ancient Wisdom, especially when they are quite harmonious and both add to the complete picture of truth.

What I find quite ironic is that the Bailey transmissions seem to predict A Course in Miracles. They speak of three groups of teachings that will lead people to greater light. The first it says was presented by Helena P. Blavatsky (1875-1890), the second through Alice A. Bailey (1919-1949) and then a third which it calls “Revelatory, emerging after 1975.” Rays and Initiations, Page 255

The perplexing thing for Bailey students is that no significant revelation in harmony with the Ancient Wisdom seemed to surface around that date.

It is interesting that when Bailey began giving out her transmissions, they were generally rejected by the Blavatsky students because they seemed to strike a different note. Now are the Bailey students are doing the same thing in rejecting A Course in Miracles for the same reason?

Indeed, A Course in Miracles strikes a different note than any teaching previously presented. But even though the style and language are much different than anything in the Ancient Wisdom, the harmony on many basic teachings is still there. As time passes, we can expect to see more students exploring both sets of teachings and benefiting from the knowledge therein.

The  books by Alice A. Bailey  can be accessed free HERE

The Secret  Doctrine by H. P. Blavatsky is free HERE

Copyright by J J Dewey

Read the Introduction HERE, Read Chapter One HERE. Chapter Two HERE, Chapter Three HERE, Chapter Four HERE, Chapter Five HERE Chapter Six HERE, Chapter Seven HERE, Chapter Eight HERE, Chapter Nine HERE, Chapter Ten HERE, Chapter Eleven HERE, Chapter Twelve HERE, Chapter Thirteen HERE, Chapter Fourteen HERE, Fifteen HERE, Sixteen HERE, Seventeen HERE,       Eighteen HERE, Nineteen HERE, Twenty HERE, Twenty-One HERE, Twenty-Two HERE, Twenty-Three HERE, Twenty-Four HERE, Twenty-Five HERE, Twenty-Six HERE, Twenty-Seven  HERE, Twenty-Eight  HERE, Twenty-Nine HERE, Thirty HERE

ACIM Conversations, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part  16, Part 17, Part 18, Part 19, Part 20, Part 21, Part 22, Part 23, Part 24, Part 25

Index for Original Archives

Index for Recent Posts

Easy Access to All the Writings

For Free Book go HERE and other books HERE

JJ’s Amazon page HERE

Gather with JJ on Facebook HERE

 

The Mysteries of A Course in Miracles, Chapter 27

The Convergence of the Paths
The Many Paths

The Course makes this curious statement about itself:

“This is a manual for a special curriculum, intended for teachers of a special form of the universal course. There are many thousands of other forms, all with the same outcome. They merely save time.” M-1.4

Here we are told that A Course in Miracles is “a special form of the universal course.”

Concerning this “universal course” we are told that “There are many thousands of other forms, all with the same outcome.”

Having been a student of many spiritual philosophies I have seen threads of similarities running through most of them. Therefore, I wouldn’t be surprised to see an inspired work like ACIM to state that there are other harmonious teachings that steer us toward liberation. I wouldn’t have been surprised if it had given the figure of a dozen or so. If it had said a hundred, I would have thought that to be a very generous estimate, but I would not have put the figure   at thousand. And neither did ACIM. It didn’t stop at a thousand, but said “many thousands.”

The various ACIM students come from many different backgrounds and some have studied numerous spiritual philosophies. Many though, when they discover ACIM, find it so different and enlightening that they stop right there and make it their one guide to spiritual living. They figure they don’t need thousands of books to draw from over even a dozen, but just one as a point of focus and that may be where the Holy Spirit guides them for this particular life.

On the other hand, other students are interested in the bigger or more holistic picture and realize that there are many truths not presented in ACIM and desire to seek them out, and the Course says nothing to discourage this. For those who are guided by ACIM though the choice as to which teachings to consume besides the Course are quite ambiguous. After all, it says there are “many thousands” that lead to the same outcome as the Course. That is basically like telling you to pick any spiritual teaching out there, follow it and it will take you toward awakening.

So, what about the guy who follows a half-crazy cult leader that scams him out of all his possessions? Does that lead him toward liberation?

Actually, such detours are steps that all of us take on the path to awakening. By giving up all his possessions he lessened his attachment to the illusion. Yeah, the cult leader taught many things in error but he did dangle the idea of a better world in front of his followers and that truth will remain embedded with them even after they realize what a fraud he was.

On the other hand, there are many spiritual teachings out there which were initiated and maintained by sincere leaders. Of course, some of them are closer to the truth than others.

These various paths fall into two main categories.

[1] The orthodox or mainstream religions. These would include Christianity, Islam, Judaism and various eastern religions.  All of these teach the idea of taking focus away from the material world and placing it on the spiritual which is also a prime focus of ACIM.

[2] Alternative spiritual movements of which ACIM is one.

For several generations now there has been an increasing number of alternative teachings emerging that have presented a challenge to mainstream religion. Some of them have an organized hierarchy and some do not. Many fall under the public’s generic title of “New Age” but few of them identify themselves as such.

Many of those involved in alternative spiritual teaching do not identify themselves with any religion when polled and this has caused significant concern with religious leaders.

 According to Gallup at the turn of the century 70% of the people in the United States belonged to a church, synagogue or mosque. Religious authorities are alarmed that by 2020 that figure had dropped to 47%. That is an unprecedented drop in identification with orthodox religion.

This doesn’t mean that people are turning toward atheism in droves as an increasing number of people identify themselves as “spiritual, but not religious.” A Pew poll taken in 2017 showed that a whopping 27% of Americans saw themselves in this light. The good news is that these people are still believers in a Higher Power, but just don’t see any organized religion being a good fit for them.

Many ACIM students are in this category.

This breaking away from orthodox religion to exploring alternative thinking is good news for the future of ACIM and other solid teachings, as orthodoxy has a firm hold on the minds of its members and few of them will consider something out of the mainstream.

The problem is that when students seek for truth out of the mainstream, they encounter the good, the bad and the ugly.

As previously noted, all of them can have some value to the sincere seeker but some are definitely more helpful than others.

ACIM doesn’t come out and blatantly tell us that its teachings are the best of the lot, as far as awakening goes, but it does tell us that it will be very helpful for those who make use of it.

Helen was told that the Course was introduced because of worsening world conditions and “Because of the acute emergency, however, the usual slow, evolutionary process is being by-passed in what might best be described as a celestial speed-up.” Journey Without Distance by Robert Skutch

So apparently most of the world’s teachings take us through “the usual slow, evolutionary process,” but ACIM is different in that the Course speeds up the process.

We are told that the plan to have people teach the Course “is to save time. Each one begins as a single light, but with the Call at its center it is a light that cannot be limited. And each one saves a thousand years of time as the world judges it.” M-1.2

In numerous occasions the Course stresses that it will save us much time. Here are a couple:

“Today we try to bring reality still closer to your mind. Each time you practice, awareness is brought a little nearer at least; sometimes a thousand years or more are saved.” W-pI.97.3

“If you achieve the faintest glimmering of what love means today, you have advanced in distance without measure and in time beyond the count of years to your release.” W-pI.127.7

So, we conclude that “many thousands” of teachings will be helpful in the evolutionary process but some, like the Course, can be a big timesaver. Those that stress “what love means” apparently save big time.

Major Approaches to Truth

Therefore, when looking at sources of light outside of ACIM one wants to find those as close to the truth as possible for they will save the most time on the path to awakening.

If the seeker follows the advice of the Course, he will do his best to be one with the mind of the Holy Spirit which will give him power to discern truth from error and the real from the unreal. This is what I have done in my life. I have found that when true principles are presented to me that there is a vibration of recognition that stirs within my inner core wherein the Spirit can be felt.

From my efforts to discern through the Spirit I have seen some value in orthodox religion, but they are indeed part of that “slow evolutionary process” previously mentioned.  However, if students will just bypass their religious authorities and study the world scriptures under the guidance of the Spirit, they can come to many truthful conclusions that will speed the journey.

For instance, I have found the words of Jesus as recorded in the New Testament to be very profound and inspiring. Never has there been so much said in such few words.

In addition, many other parts of the Bible and other world scriptures have thoughts and teachings worthy of contemplation.

In recent times a plethora of teachings have surfaced, often with the claim that they were transmitted from some higher or divine authority, from God to all kinds of other entities.

These transmissions, often called channeling, fall into two general categories.

The first are unconscious transmissions. The most common of these occur when the subject goes into a trance and another entity speaks through his or her body, often with a different voice or accent. Generally, when the medium awakens there will be no memory of what occurred though some say they were somewhat conscious of what was received. Seth and the Law of One are two popular writings received this way.

Another in this category is reception through automatic writing. Here some other worldly force or entity takes control of the hand and writes messages. The subject is unaware of what was written until he reads them himself. The popular “Conversations with God” was received this way.

The second category of transmission is by a fully conscious reception through what we might call mental telepathy. This was the method used by Helen Schucman in receiving A Course in Miracles.

Many esoteric students, including myself, consider the teachings received through conscious reception to be significantly superior to the unconscious ones.  One reason is that many entities drawn to unconscious mediums are not very advanced along the path to awakening. Many of them are no more intelligent than those taking in their words.

The source of other direct voice channels can come from the mind of the medium or even the combined minds of those participating.

There are two major problems with material delivered by unconscious mediums. The first is that almost all of them make predictions that do not come true. Unfortunately, this does not seem to discourage true believers but it does raise a red flag to a dispassionate investigator.

The second problem is that most of their teachings will have points that disagree with each other. If two teachings disagree then either one or both of them are false. They cannot both be true. ACIM puts forth a great teaching on this:

“The truth is true, and nothing else is true. This you have heard before, but may not yet accept both parts of it. Without the first, the second has no meaning. But without the second, is the first no longer true. Truth cannot have an opposite. This can not be too often said and thought about. For if what is not true is true as well as what is true, then part of truth is false. And truth has lost its meaning. Nothing but the truth is true, and what is false is false.” W-pI.152.3

Messages from conscious channeling comes from two sources. The first is from a person’s own ego. These messages will contain contradictory teachings and often include false prophesies. They have flaws similar to the unconscious mediums and are usually created by the subtle desires of the receiver.

The second source is from a being of high intelligence who has mastered the art of mental telepathy. If the material produced far exceeds in quality anything the receiver has written then it most probably came from advanced entity often referred to as a Master of Wisdom. These are mentioned in the Course:

“There are those who have reached God directly, retaining no trace of worldly limits and remembering their own Identity perfectly. These might be called the Teachers of teachers because, although they are no longer visible, their image can yet be called upon. And they will appear when and where it is helpful for them to do so. To those to whom such appearances would be frightening, they give their ideas. No one can call on them in vain. Nor is there anyone of whom they are unaware. All needs are known to them, and all mistakes are recognized and overlooked by them. The time will come when this is understood. And meanwhile, they give all their gifts to the teachers of God who look to them for help, asking all things in their name and in no other.”  M-26.2

The Voice in ACIM identifies Itself as Jesus but there are numerous other Masters besides him who work with humanity. Much of their work is not recognized by humanity for they will often send impressions giving needed ideas and instructions to those dedicated to serving humanity. When the transmissions are received, they often think they came from their own minds.

Then there are significant times that a Master will transmit teachings to be given out to the general public as was the case with A Course in Miracles.

In addition to the Course, numerous teachings of a high order have been transmitted in full consciousness to various teachers of the Ancient Wisdom often linked to Theosophy.  These include Helena P. Blavatsky, the founder of Theosophy, Helena Roerich, Alice A. Bailey, and Lucille Cedercrans as significant conscious receivers. There are numerous others who claim contact with the masters, but these are significant ones.

Rudolf Steiner is another significant figure associated with Theosophy but he received through his own meditations rather than mental telepathy from a Master.

It is interesting that when we include Helen Schucman that we have three Helens receiving very influential teachings by conscious mental telepathy.

Even if a set of teachings is of a high order no student should assume they are infallible. He or she should always run them by the Spirit within to make sure one’s understanding is correct. Without assistance of the Holy Spirit, the drawback of language itself will cause some distortion.

My favorite receiver of the Ancient Wisdom is Alice A. Bailey. Like A Course in Miracles, I only had to read a few pages of her work to conclude that this was a transmission from an intelligence of a very high order. H. P. Blavatsky’s teachings are also profound as she is largely responsible for introducing the Ancient Wisdom tradition to the West.

Like Helen Schucman, Alice A. Bailey started consciously registering a voice from within and at first was reluctant to cooperate. Like Helen, after receiving a number of transmissions she became convinced of their quality and became a willing scribe. Overall, Alice produced 24 books containing over 3,400,000 words.

The purpose of the two sets of writings are quite a bit different. The Course has the one main goal of waking up the seeker to his true reality. The Baily and Blavastky writings also deal with this but go into significant detail in a much wider range of teachings. Even though the  Ancient Wisdom and ACIM are quite harmonious with each other the style and presentation are so different it is like they were written in two different languages. One could even say that ACIM has a language all in its own category. This is one reason that many of its students focus on it alone and do not see much in harmony from other teachings.  Very few ACIM students study the Ancient Wisdom.

On the other hand, students of the Ancient Wisdom have the same problem as Course students.  The writing style and focus seem so different that they do not give them a serious look and will often dismiss them after reading a few pages.  It is interesting though that Ancient Wisdom students will read a wide variety within their accepted philosophy. I would chalk this up to the fact that the various writings within the category of the Ancient Wisdom use a similar language, vocabulary and accepted sources. The problem is that ACIM seems to be in such a different category that similarities in teachings are difficult for them to see.

It is about time then that someone took a serious look at both teaching traditions and see how they line up. If both come from similarly high spiritual sources then they should be a high level of agreement.

Fortunately, I have seriously studied both and have indeed found a high level of such agreement.  To see this one has to realize that both sides use quite a different vocabulary, define words and concepts differently and have a different purpose and focus. But if one looks beyond the imperfection of reducing pure thought down to the symbols that create our writing and look at the ideas expressed one can find much harmony.

And that is what we will do next. We will examine the significant teachings of both and see how they line up with each other.

Copyright by J J Dewey

Read the Introduction HERE, Read Chapter One HERE. Chapter Two HERE, Chapter Three HERE, Chapter Four HERE, Chapter Five HERE Chapter Six HERE, Chapter Seven HERE, Chapter Eight HERE, Chapter Nine HERE, Chapter Ten HERE, Chapter Eleven HERE, Chapter Twelve HERE, Chapter Thirteen HERE, Chapter Fourteen HERE, Fifteen HERE, Sixteen HERE, Seventeen HERE,       Eighteen HERE, Nineteen HERE, Twenty HERE, Twenty-One HERE, Twenty-Two HERE, Twenty-Three HERE, Twenty-Four HERE, Twenty-Five HERE, Twenty-Six HERE, Twenty-Seven  HERE, Twenty-Eight  HERE, Twenty-Nine HERE, Thirty HERE

ACIM Conversations, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part  16, Part 17, Part 18, Part 19, Part 20, Part 21, Part 22, Part 23, Part 24, Part 25

Index for Original Archives

Index for Recent Posts

Easy Access to All the Writings

For Free Book go HERE and other books HERE

JJ’s Amazon page HERE

Gather with JJ on Facebook HERE

The Mysteries of A Course in Miracles, Chapter 26

The Mystery of Creating Ourselves

The Meaning of Creation

The Course tells us a number of times that we did not create ourselves. Instead, it stresses the importance of recognizing that we were created by our Father, God.

When I first read this, I thought it was an extremely odd statement. First of all, I do not know anyone who thinks he created himself.

“How would it be possible to create yourself?” I thought. One moment you are nothing and do not exist, and that which does not exist wills itself into existence. How could nothingness will itself into something?

This indeed seemed like an impossibility to me. Furthermore, I didn’t know of anyone who believed such a thing was even possible. How in the world does one conceive of that which has no existence willing itself into existence? If there is nothing there, then there could be no will to will itself into existence. Even will is something.

Then, as I studied the Course more thoroughly, I began to realize that I had not been interpreting the phrase correctly, and I suspected that many other students made the same mistake. The reason for the mistake is obvious.

When the typical believer talks about God creating us, he assumes that at one time we did not exist, and then, when God decided to create us, we did exist. In other words, thanks to God, one moment we did not exist and the next one we did.

Therefore, when ACIM speaks of us creating ourselves, it seems natural to think it means that some believe they just thought themselves into existence from nothingness. This was the concept that made no sense to me.

As I studied the various references to creating ourselves, I discovered that the meaning was quite different than I supposed at the beginning. The statement doesn’t have anything to do with bringing us into existence out of nothing. This did not happen because we have always existed. The Course is quite clear that we are eternal and never had a beginning:

“For God has never condemned His Son, and being guiltless he is eternal.” T-13.I.9

“You are immortal because you are eternal,” T-13.I.8

“There are no beginnings and no endings in God,” T-11.I.2

“Heaven, where everything eternal in it has always been.” T-12.VI.7

Since the Course tells us that we are Sons of God who were (and part of us still is) in heaven, then we have “always been.”

If creation, then, means to bring something in existence from nothing so that it has a beginning, then we are not created beings because we have always existed. Something that has always existed has no beginning, or creation as the word is generally understood.

On the other hand, there was a “beginning” to our creation as discussed in the Course:

“Your creation by God is the only Foundation that cannot be shaken, because the light is in it. Your starting point is truth, and you must return to your Beginning.” T-3.VII.5

We are thus eternal beings without beginning to our existence, but there was a beginning to our creation.

Obviously then, when ACIM uses the word “create,” it applies its own special meaning to it, just as it does with numerous other words and phrases.

If the Course’s use of the word “create” does not mean to begin an actual existence from nothing, then what does it mean?

Instead of bringing something into existence, the Course teaches that creation is a complete sharing. The sharing is so complete that the receiver obtains all the powers and attributes of the creator.

There are many references in the Course that substantiate this. In this first one we are told what “true creation” is. Jesus tells us that he made the decision to share his knowledge “because the decision itself is the decision to share. It is made by giving, and is therefore the one choice that RESEMBLES TRUE CREATION.” T-5.II.9

True creation thus involves a full sharing, a quality that we inherited:

“The soul yearns to share its Being as its Creator did. Created by sharing, its will is to create.” UR T 7 J 3

“You cannot separate your Self from your Creator, Who created you by sharing His Being with you.” T-7.V.6

So then, your soul was created by God “sharing His Being with you.”

We, in turn, become creators and do the same thing:

“This is an ongoing process in which you share, and because you share it, you are inspired to create like God.” T-7.I.1 “and to create like Him is to share the perfect Love He shares with you.” T-7.I.6

When the typical religious person thinks of God creating, he usually imagines God just speaking the word and, poof, the creation appears. Then when he thinks of a human creation, he thinks of the person coming up with an idea and then gathering and assembling the parts to manifest it.

According to ACIM then, creation by God or the Son does not conform to either of these traditional ideas. Instead of manifesting something in time and space, heavenly creation is sharing and extending the one life of the Godhead.

This brings us to some curious questions. We are told that God “created you by sharing His Being with you.” T-7.V.6

If you did not exist before creation, then how could God share his being with you? If he shared with you, there had to be something with which to share.

Secondly, what was the “you” that was in existence before the creation event in which God created you through sharing with “you” and what was the difference in the “you” mentioned before your creation and afterwards?

 

Before and After Creation

These questions are indeed applicable when we consider that the Course teaches that we are eternal beings without beginning or an end.

The mystery deepens when we realize that ACIM teaches that God Himself had a creation. Hopefully, the reader’s head will not explode as we examine this thought.

First, the Course definitely tells us that “God is an idea, and … like your Father, you are an idea.” T-15.VI.4

Then it tells us that “Ideas leave not their source, and their effects but seem to be apart from them. Ideas are of the mind.” T-26.VII.4

This tells us that we, as Sons, are ideas. We have not left our source who is God.

But wait! God also is an idea, and, like us as an idea, He also has not left His source.

What is the source for God?

It tells us clearly “Ideas are of the mind.”

So, the source for God is Mind, and since our source is God, then Mind is ultimately also our source. Indeed, Mind is of extreme importance, for it is written: “If I did not think I would not exist, because life is thought.” W-pI.54.2.

The source of all creation, then, is an idea of some kind, and the source of ideas are the mind; and without mind there would be no thought, and without thought there is no life, and without life there is no existence.

Thus, the source of all existence is Mind. Putting this all together, the only explanation is that in the eternities there is one great life which is the Universal Mind. The idea of God was then created by the thought of this Mind from whence all things come.

The fact that God was created is affirmed in the Course for it says:

“Your will to create was given you by your Creator, Who was expressing the same Will IN HIS CREATION.” T-2.VIII.1

The original text words this a little differently but implies the same meaning:

“His instincts for creation were given him by his own Creator, who was expressing the same instinct IN HIS CREATION.” UR T 2 E 44 (Caps mine)

Earlier I pointed out, with backing from ACIM quotes, that The Father Created the Son with many parts, and the Sons created additional Sons. Sons who created Sons obtained the position of Father in relation to their created Sons. Similarly, your Father was also a Son who created you and thus became a Father to you. The Father and Son are One as taught in the Course, for all Fathers are also Sons.

But the core to understanding it all is to realize that God, Fathers, Sons, the Holy Spirit are all ideas which leave not their source.

And what is their Source?

Mind.

And what is Mind?

Basically, the same as intelligence, or light, truth and love.

Therefore, from Universal Mind came the idea of God which left not its Source; and God became synonymous with the Universal Thought which created all there is.

We thus arrive at a teaching that is in harmony with many of the spiritual traditions of the East which teach something similar.

We therefore come to the conclusion that all life is an idea which has left not its Source, and the ultimate Source for all is some type of universal mind, or something we might call pure intelligent Spirit.

As mentioned earlier, earlier, we are eternal beings without beginning, and God, our Father, created, transformed, added to and extended Himself to us by sharing Himself. This sharing did not bring us into existence, for we never had a beginning, but it created a new version of what we are. This offered the eternal ability to create by sharing as our Creator did with us.

This text adds further light on this thought: “Real birth is not a beginning; it is a CONTINUING. Everything that CAN continue has already BEEN born. But it can INCREASE as you are willing to return the part of your mind that needs healing to the higher part, and thus render your creating (creation) undivided.” UR T 5 F 5 \

Indeed, as the Course stresses, we are eternal beings, and  since this is so our creation is merely “a continuing.” Our creation does not bring us into existence, but provides an opportunity for “increase.”

Earlier we asked, what was the “you” that was in existence before the creation event in which God created you through sharing with “you” and what was the difference in the “you” mentioned before your creation and afterwards?

We know that which is the essential you has always existed, even before your Creator brought you into His own being through the sharing of Mind. Before this creation/sharing event, you existed as some type of undeveloped potential that had not yet obtained the qualities shared with you by your Creator. Before your creation, you merely existed as potential, but afterwards you shared in all that the life of God has.

The Course tells us that we were created to create, and as Sons we will create additional Sons and extend the Life of God eternally.

There is apparently an infinite number of potential Sons that can be stimulated, or activated with Mind, so they can become a part of the One Sonship.

The main difference before and after our creation is that before creation we did not have the ability to create through the united Sonship, but afterwards we did. We were also able to experience love through sharing in a way unknown to us before creation.

 

We Wanted to Create Ourselves

Having covered this esoteric ground, we can finally face the prime question as to what the Course means when it tells us that at the separation, we wanted to create ourselves. We even thought we were the ones who created ourselves:

“Father, I did not make myself, although in my insanity I thought I did.” W-pII.260.1

We are told that we had the mistaken notion that “since man can create himself, the direction of his own creation is up to him.” UR T 2 A 5

The Course tells us that is folly because “you cannot escape from fear until you realize that you did not and could not create yourself. You can never make your misperceptions true.” T-3.IV.3 Each is called to recognize that, “I am as God created me.”

We see then that the thinking that separated the Sons who left from those who stayed behind was the belief of some that they not only created themselves, but could continue creating themselves and to make this possible, they created a universe of form in time and space.

At this point we must clarify what is meant by their intention to create themselves. The previous quote gives some light. Here it is again:

since man can create himself, the direction of his own creation is up to him.” UR T 2 A 5

We who are experiencing this world believed we created ourselves and will continue doing so because we are the masters of our destiny, and can become whatever we decide to be.

So, the main difference here was that the Sons who stayed behind remained a part of the collective where all the decisions of the unified life were recognized as their decisions because they all shared the one life.

The Sons who separated wanted to create themselves as individuals with the result that each would be different and unique.

Now, when students first read the Course and were told that we made the error of thinking we created ourselves, they think, “Yes, of course. I didn’t create myself. God did.”

This interpretation does not reveal what happened and what was such a tremendous attraction that many billions of the Sons of God separated so they could create themselves.

To create yourself is to be in charge of what you as an individual will become. To understand the attraction just look at how people live their lives. They want to be in charge of what they do, what they think, what they decide, etc. Very few want some other entity besides themselves telling them what they can make of their lives. Most everyone in this world wants to mold their own lives according to their own desires and do not want to give up that power to anyone, even God.

To understand the attraction of creating ourselves as compared to yielding to a creator, we can reflect on the stories in Star Trek about the confrontations with the Borg.

The Borg consisted of one great life where no one had any individuality and had no hand in creating themselves. Instead, what they were and their placement was entirely determined by the collective life or the godlike queen.

The Borg corresponds in some ways to the life of the One Son in heaven, but with a major difference. The lives in the Borg had no free will and the lives in heaven do.

The Borg declared that “resistance is futile” and forcefully assimilated anyone who crossed their path, usually against their will.

On the other hand, heaven merely waits for us to come to our senses and return. We come to heaven because we enjoy the shared life, not because we are forced into it. But like the Borg, resistance is futile, but for a different reason. It is only a matter of time before we want to return home.

Despite the differences, the similarities of the Borg and the Star Trek Federation are close enough to heaven and earth, as presented by ACIM, for us to glean an understanding of why so many Sons of God wanted to leave the collective and have some experience as an individual in the marvelous worlds of time and space.

When we watch Star Trek no one thinks, “Man, I would really like to join something like the Borg where I would have no identity.”

On the other hand, many think that they would like to join something like the Star Trek Federation where you could still be an individual, create your own destiny and explore new worlds. The fact that the members of the Borg were always at peace and had no pain was not seen as a selling point to either Star Fleet or the Star Trek audience.

The correspondence is not exact but close enough to give us an idea as to why so many Sons of God were attracted to becoming an individual and participating in a world where there were differences, games, time, space, consciousness, perception and many things that were unknown, waiting to be discovered.

 

Recognizing the Problem

The Course tells us to “recognize the problem so it can be solved.” (Lesson 79)

We are also told:

“Heaven is chosen consciously. The choice cannot be made until alternatives are accurately seen and understood. All that is veiled in shadows must be raised to understanding.” W-pI.138.9

 Yet the biggest problem of all is that which caused the separation. But the only problem seen here by most students is that the Son got a “mad idea” in his head, went into temporary insanity for an instant, and then God presented a solution and the problem was solved. The Son is now safe in heaven.

Those who encapsulate an event that “shattered heaven” into such a simplistic super Reader’s Digest version are not seeing the problem – hence avoiding the solution – for we are definitely trapped here in a dream world in need of “salvation” as presented by ACIM.

Perhaps the reason that we see no graduates from A Course in Miracles, where the body disappears in the eyes of many witnesses and then reappears as in the case of Jesus, is that the problem is not understood, and if it is not seen or understood then it cannot be solved.

According to the Course, the problem started in heaven when many Sons of God became dissatisfied and wanted to create themselves, or to have some say in their individual destiny.

 

Even though heaven was a place of peace and love, many apparently wanted more than this.

The world we created is said to be “a distortion of the world (heaven), planned solely around what you would have preferred.” T-18.II.1

“It is, then, only your wish to change reality that is fearful, because by your wish you think you have accomplished what you wish.” T-17.I.2

What does this tell us? We “preferred” another world we envisioned in preference to heaven. We then had a “wish” to change our reality and we actually thought we had accomplished this, apparently with the creation of this universe of form, time and space.

“Whenever projection in its inappropriate sense is utilized, it always implies that some emptiness (or lack of everything) must exist, and that it is within man’s ability to put his own ideas there instead of the truth.” UR T 2 A 5

This tells us that we thought we could fill some emptiness with our own ideas, though we probably didn’t see these ideas as opposing any truth.

In addition, we wanted to change our identity:

“The ego is a wrong-minded attempt to perceive yourself as you wish to be, rather than as you are.” T-3.IV.2

It looks like that after an eternity of bliss that we wanted to try something new.

We actually embraced the illusion:

“The world is an illusion. Those who choose to come to it are seeking for a place where they can be illusions, and avoid their own reality.” W-pI.155.2

According to this, we did not just blindly stumble out of heaven, but we wanted to “avoid” it and replace it with ideas of our own making we thought were better than heaven.

The Course calls this a “mad idea”, but obviously that is not the way that many billions of the Sons of God looked at it.

Just visualize the vast numbers of the Sons of God who chose to create themselves. On this planet alone there are seven billion Sons, not counting the ones not in incarnation.

Then in our galaxy there are over 200 billion star systems, many with earth-like planets, and we assume many with intelligent life.

Then, in the known universe, there are billions of galaxies, many larger than our own. Therefore, the number of the Sons of God must be staggering, but consider this:

“How holy is the smallest grain of sand, when it is recognized as being part of the completed picture of God’s Son!” T-28.IV.9

If the smallest grain of sand is a “part of the completed picture of God’s Son!” then the planets, stars and galaxies would certainly be also. In other words, all creation we see about us is a part of the Sonship which left heaven for the adventure of self-creation. The Son, through all of its parts, wants to experience every possible angle of what being different would entail. He wants to experience all that there could be available to experience whether in the illusion or in reality.

To see the separation as a brief instant of insanity that was quickly corrected misses the point and completely overlooks the problem.

The idea of creating ourselves and controlling our own destiny was a big deal and was something much more than just a passing thought.

Consider this: What do we really know about heaven? Not much, but we are told this.

Nor is there any need for us to try to speak of what must forever lie beyond words. “ T-18.IX.11 Heaven “can never be described” W-pI.122.8

All we are told about heaven is that it is a place where there are good feelings. The message of the Course is basically this:

“Trust me. You’ll feel great when you enter heaven.”

We are told that in heaven there is no form, so there is NO THING to feel good about. Perhaps then a great draw was that we wanted SOME THING to stimulate new and different feelings. Things with differences would stimulate both positive and negative feelings, but we figured it was worth the risk to have a great adventure where such a range of feelings could be experienced.

It is obvious that the creation of our reality was more than some crazy afterthought. Just look at how much thought had to be put into our creation, beginning with the atom and its many parts balancing energies with great precision. Then the atoms were joined to create molecules and finally living cells with extremely complex DNA. Finally, all this intelligence combined to make organic bodies as avatars for our experience.

All this creation took much more than some quickly passing thought. Instead, our universe is the product of extremely intelligent and deliberate thinking that took place over billions of years.

 

A Request for the Impossible

Let us encapsulate our situation from the beginning.

We are eternal beings without beginning or end. Some essence in us existed before creation for at creation we are told that “His (God’s) Mind shone on you in your creation and brought your mind into being.” T-4.IV.9

 What is the ‘you” that God used to bring your mind into existence? This would be the part of you that has always existed, even before God created you.

As some type of basic intelligence, we were invited to join a collective that we presently call God. That we had a choice in this matter is evidenced by this statement:

“Man was not created by his own free will alone.” OE Tx:1.87

In addition, Jesus is said to have exercised his free will in his creation:

“As You are One, so am I one with You. And this I chose in my creation, where my will became forever one with Yours.” W-pII.329.1

So, our free will was involved as we were going through the creation process, but we did not have power to create ourselves.

Evidently, there was a choice on our part that allowed us to participate in the great creation process, a process that we could not accomplish on our own. We did not create ourselves, but chose to be created or transformed into a part of a greater whole where each of us would play a special function.

Intelligences, called Sons of God, took us under their wings and nurtured us, becoming as fathers to us. These fathers created or transformed us into lives that shared with the whole, having greater abilities and functions than we had before.

There was an important rule that we all followed which is called “The Principle of Glory” in my other writings. That is, you do not take glory for yourself for that which was accomplished by another. Our creation/transformation was accomplished through the stimulation and sharing of our Fathers and not through our own efforts. We only made the choice to allow it to happen.

Thus does the Course place great emphasis on the fact that we did not create ourselves. We owe our creation to our Father, and the sharing involved was so great that we should be eternally grateful and never want to leave the divine collective.

But, apparently, after an eternity, some began to feel a sense of lack, that there was experience to be had outside the golden borders of heaven.

Sons who wanted experience outside of heaven approached God for a special favor. Here was the response:

“You were at peace until you asked for special favor. And God did not give it for the request was alien to Him, and you could not ask this of a Father Who truly loved His Son. Therefore you made of Him an unloving father, demanding of Him what only such a father could give. And the peace of God’s Son was shattered, for he no longer understood his Father.” T-13.III.10

So here we were in heaven with a complete sharing of bliss, love and peace, and after an eternity we began to wonder if there was something else to experience. What would it be like to live in a world of contrasts, of beginnings and endings, or even where we had limitations and vulnerabilities?

“Absolutely no!” said the Father. “That is not in the program.”

The Father’s rejection thus shattered our peace, for in previous times He had given us everything possible. Now the Sons had given a request that was deemed impossible. This denial of exploring other states of existence caused the Sons to become dissatisfied with the reality and sameness of heaven.

This caused us to lose our sense of peace, and the Sons began “seeking for a place where they can be illusions, and avoid their own reality.” W-pI.155.2

The rejected sons did not give up their dream by merely acquiescing, but pondered on how they could manifest it. We began to “dream of (our) ability to control reality by substituting a world that you prefer.” T-18.II.4

So, our peace there was shattered, but we came to the realization that we had all the creative powers of God, for He shared them with us in creation. We could therefore use those powers to “control reality” and create a world according to our desires.

God told us we were seeking for the impossible but we maintained the belief it was possible, so we went ahead with the creation of a universe of time and space with contrasts, beginnings and endings. This creation did not appear in the eternal reality, but manifest as an illusion or dream in which we volunteered to enter to increase our world of experience.

And thus, here we are in this illusion. We are not the first, but repeating what has been done before many times. When we have passed through every experience desired here, we can then return to heaven with a greater degree of contentment than before and resume as creative Sons of God creating new Sons who will have a similar curiosity about worlds of time and space.

 

The True Cost of Liberation

When a student comes across A Course in Miracles and reads the beautiful promises of heaven, and how we can get there just by letting go of this dream in which we find ourselves, he often thinks he is ready to make the move at any time.

The problem is that he has lost his memory of heaven and what there was about it that made him want to leave and create his own world.

Even though the memory is not consciously available, the subtle effects of it still remain and must be transcended. Thus, the student may think he is ready to let this world go, but he may be far from solving the problem that brought him here to begin with.

Let us suppose you were a dissatisfied prince and wanted to go to another country that was much different than your home to see what it was like to live there. But then when you arrived at the foreign land you got hit on the head and had amnesia and couldn’t remember where you came from.

Then an old friend shows up and identifies you and tells you of your home and all the wonderful amenities you had as a prince. That sounds pretty attractive, so you return home. Then, on arrival, your memory returns and you realize that you were not done exploring the foreign country. So you wind up again being unsettled at home and wanting to go off and explore again.

The point is that, like the prince, we have lost our memories and are attracted by the wonderful stories of heaven. But if we had our full memories returned, we would understand why we made the journey here in the first place, and we may feel that we are not yet done exploring all there is to experience here.

For instance, just think of all the special relationships you have with friends, family, romantic relationships, work etc. Can you let them all go to join the collective?

Think of all the possessions you have acquired through a lifetime of labor. Can you let them go?

Think of all the learning you have attained in this life that you will no longer need.

Think of how much care you give your body. Are you willing to not pay any attention to it and just accept what happens?

Then think of your life itself with your goals and what you want to accomplish. Can you just let all that go?

But, perhaps the most difficult to release yourself from is your desire to create yourself. Here on earth, you are in charge of your destiny and decide what kind of person you want to become and talents that you will acquire. If you want to enter ACIM heaven you have to let all that go. You will then have no part in creating yourself, or becoming who you want to be. You already have an assigned and eternal place in heaven and none other is available.

Maybe you are not as ready for the move to heaven as you think. Maybe you need to get some more of creating yourself out of your system before you are ready to return.

The parable of Jesus comes to mind here:

“For if you lay the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule you, saying, ‘This person began to build and wasn’t able to finish.’

“Or suppose a king is about to go to war against another king. Won’t he first sit down and consider whether he is able with ten thousand men to oppose the one coming against him with twenty thousand?

“If he is not able, he will send a delegation while the other is still a long way off and will ask for terms of peace.

In the same way, those of you who do not give up everything you have cannot be my disciples.” Luke 14:28-33 NIV

Many would-be followers are like the guy building the tower who did not properly understand what it took to complete the project. Even so, many students see the completion of the Course and waking up as much more simplistic than it is. Many are completely unaware of the reasoning behind the decision to come here in the first place.

Think of it this way. Billions of Sons of God chose to make this world and come here. And when we made the choice, we were in a spiritual and mental state much superior to what we have here in this material sphere.

The choice was made in full awareness and involved creation that took tremendous intelligence, labor and time. This adventure was not something decided on a lark, but took tremendous planning and thought to pull it off.

Yes, we must recognize the problem so it can be solved. We must realize that the problem was an idea with great appeal and will only be solved when the appeal of this world fades and is replaced by the desire to return home.

Studying A Course in Miracles is a good first step.

Copyright by J J Dewey

Read the Introduction HERE, Read Chapter One HERE. Chapter Two HERE, Chapter Three HERE, Chapter Four HERE, Chapter Five HERE Chapter Six HERE, Chapter Seven HERE, Chapter Eight HERE, Chapter Nine HERE, Chapter Ten HERE, Chapter Eleven HERE, Chapter Twelve HERE, Chapter Thirteen HERE, Chapter Fourteen HERE, Fifteen HERE, Sixteen HERE, Seventeen HERE,       Eighteen HERE, Nineteen HERE, Twenty HERE, Twenty-One HERE, Twenty-Two HERE, Twenty-Three HERE, Twenty-Four HERE, Twenty-Five HERE, Twenty-Six HERE, Twenty-Seven  HERE, Twenty-Eight  HERE, Twenty-Nine HERE, Thirty HERE

ACIM Conversations, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part  16, Part 17, Part 18, Part 19, Part 20, Part 21, Part 22, Part 23, Part 24, Part 25

Copyright by J J Dewey

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