A Course in Miracles puts forth the unbridled truth. Somewhere in our mind, even in our fabricated self-induced coma, the spark of remembrance lives. We can sense it, however dimly. Reading the text and even doing the lessons can lay the foundation for our return to truth, to sanity, but it does not solve the problem of the separation. We made it and it needs to be undone. We can repeat, “I am the Son of God” as often as we please, but we cannot know it or we would not be here. We can learn to put our faith in it. We can even have an experience of it, but we cannot know. As long as we are in perceptionland we cannot know.
“To perceive the truth is not the same as to know it.” (T-3.III.5:13)
“As long as perception lasts prayer has a place. Since perception rests on lack, those who perceive have not totally accepted the Atonement and given themselves over to truth. Perception is based on a separated state, so that anyone who perceives at all needs healing.” (T-3.V.10:1-3)
The highest level of awareness we can achieve, which ushers in knowledge, is I do not know. It is only from this place of empty hands that the truth can be revealed.
“The world can teach no images of you unless you want to learn them. There will come a time when images have all gone by, and you will see you know not what you are. It is to this unsealed and open mind that truth returns, unhindered and unbound. Where concepts of the self have been laid by is truth revealed exactly as it is. When every concept has been raised to doubt and question, and been recognized as made on no assumptions that would stand the light, then is the truth left free to enter in its sanctuary, clean and free of guilt. There is no statement that the world is more afraid to hear than this:
I do not know the thing I am, and therefore do not know what I am doing, where I am, or how to look upon the world or on myself.
Yet in this learning is salvation born. And What you are will tell you of Itself.” (T-31.V.17:1-9)
And to get to this place of empty hands we must lay aside all concepts of the self.
“Through Him you learn how to forgive (not make real) the self you think you made, and let it disappear.” (W-121.6:4)
Why? Because the self we made thinks it knows everything because we told it that it did. More on that self.
“The self you made is not the Son of God. Therefore, this self does not exist at all. And anything it seems to do and think means nothing. It is neither bad nor good. It is unreal, and nothing more than that. It does not battle with the Son of God. It does not hurt him, nor attack his peace. It has not changed creation, nor reduced eternal sinlessness to sin, and love to hate. What power can this self you made possess, when it would contradict the Will of God?” (W-93.5:1-9)
“This is your chosen self, the one you made as a replacement for reality. This is the self you savagely defend against all reason, every evidence, and all the witnesses with proof to show this is not you. You heed them not. You go on your appointed way, with eyes cast down lest you might catch a glimpse of truth, and be released from self-deception and set free.” (W-166.7:1-4)
“What he does not realize and needs to learn is that this “self,” which can attack and be attacked as well, is a concept he made up. Further, he cherishes it, defends it, and is sometimes even willing to “sacrifice” his “life” on its behalf. For he regards it as himself. This self he sees as being acted on, reacting to external forces as they demand, and helpless midst the power of the world.” (P-1.3:3-6)
When this self we made has been raised to doubt and question and shown that no premises on which it is built and seems to be real are true, then truth can come. This is another way of saying that when this self we made that makes self-reliance, the separation, substituting another will for God’s and being alone seem possible, has been disavowed, we can return to our remembrance of our total dependence on God and all that entails.
If we have been persuaded that the highest awareness we can achieve in consciousness, the level of perception, is I do not know, because this is the complete dis-identification with the self we made that thinks it knows everything, and we want to transcend the ego, there is only one course of action for us.
“Step back in faith and let truth lead the way.” (W-155.10:3)
In other words…Ask the Holy Spirit everything. If you do not ask the Holy Spirit you are by default making decisions with the ego. There is no magnitude of decisions. A major tool to learn to transcend the self is asking the Holy Spirit everything. Burning away of the self is imperative to the return of the awareness of truth.
“And yet, you CANNOT make decisions by yourself. The only question really is with what you choose to make them. That is really all. The first rule, then, is not coercion, but a simple statement of a simple fact. 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.14:3-9)
“You are much too tolerant of mind wandering, and are passively condoning your mind’s miscreations. The particular result does not matter, but the fundamental error does. The correction is always the same. Before you choose to do anything, ask me if your choice is in accord with mine. If you are sure that it is, there will be no fear.” (T-2.VI.4:6-10)
In addition, to empty our hands, we must learn from the Holy Spirit how to forgive the self we made and learn that it is not real. We must be willing to look unflinchingly at this self we have made and let it testify to us about all of our hidden beliefs. If we are willing, this looking can take us on a journey inward to the foundation of the ego thought system. If we are ready to take this journey, the real hero’s journey, we must have a rock solid trust in the Holy Spirit.
“The mind can make the belief in separation very real and very fearful, and this belief is the “devil.” It is powerful, active, destructive and clearly in opposition to God, because it literally denies His Fatherhood. LOOK AT YOUR LIFE and see what the devil has made.” (T-3.VII.5:1-3)
We cannot have a life we participate in and a separate spiritual life where we study the Course. Our life in form reflects our mind training, our healing of the mind.
“To free the world from every kind of pain is but to change your mind about yourself. There is no world apart from your ideas because ideas leave not their source, and you maintain the world within your mind in thought.” (W-132.10:2-3)
If our ideas are changing, the outward picture of those ideas would also change.
How identified are we with the self we have made? Do we want to know? Do we want to look at our life?
We could ask ourselves the following questions to discern how protective we are of the self we made. Would it be easy, difficult or very difficult to delete all photographic evidence of our little self’s seeming existence in the world? Would it be easy, difficult or very difficult to wear the same clothes for thirty days with laundering of course? Would it be easy, difficult or very difficult not to adorn the body in any way for thirty days? Would it be easy, difficult or very difficult to not buy anything but essentials for thirty days? Would it be easy, difficult or very difficult to watch no news for thirty days? Would it be easy, difficult or very difficult to flip a coin for every decision you make for a day? For a week? For a month? Would it be easy, difficult or very difficult to ask the Holy Spirit everything for thirty days?
Entertaining these questions can give us insight into the degree to which we are identified with the self we made. Doing them for any amount of time will provide more insight. For those of us who are ready, there is another way of living in the world which looks like nothing we can presently see and will have us moving powerfully in the direction of the unseen. Our goal, in perceptionland, is to become a faceless, nameless servant of the Spirit so that we can be used by him without hesitation. In this place of empty hands can truth return.