One of the reasons the Course is difficult to understand is because it is written for students at different levels of awareness. And before you go there…
Equality does not imply equality now. When everyone recognizes that he has everything, individual contributions to the Sonship will no longer be necessary. (T-1.V.2:5-6)
And Jesus, our brother, is obviously at a higher level of awareness than we are. He is our elder brother in awareness.
An elder brother is entitled to respect for his greater experience, and obedience for his greater wisdom.(T-1.II.3:7)
Respect is an assumption of good faith and competence. In another section Jesus says that he will tell us what to do but we have to believe he knows what he is talking about, or is competent.
Some people have a reaction to the word obedience. This is based on their mistaken belief that they, as the personality self or the seemingly separated mind, can be autonomous. At our present level, we will obey the ego or we will obey the Holy Spirit. We are slave to the ego or servant of the Holy Spirit. There is no third choice of autonomy. That is the ego’s fiction.
Obey the Holy Spirit, and you will be giving up the ego. But you will be sacrificing nothing. On the contrary, you will be gaining everything. If you believed this, there would be no conflict. (T-7.X.3:1-11)
This can be confusing because…
Do not underestimate the power of the devotion of God’s Son, nor the power the god he worships has over him. For he places himself at the altar of his god, whether it be the god he made or the God Who created him. That is why his slavery is as complete as his freedom, for he will obey only the god he accepts. The god of crucifixion demands that he crucify, and his worshippers obey. In his name they crucify themselves, believing that the power of the Son of God is born of sacrifice and pain. The God of resurrection demands nothing, for He does not will to take away. He does not require obedience, for obedience implies submission. He would only have you learn your will and follow it, not in the spirit of sacrifice and submission, but in the gladness of freedom. (T-11.VI.5:1-8)
This speaks to the God level. If your will and God’s are one, then there is no one to be obeyed. The following is a description of the greatest act of love ever. This God, our Father, is AWE-some.
God is as dependent on you as you are on Him, because His Autonomy encompasses yours, and is therefore incomplete without it. (T-11.V.12:1)
Yours is the independence OF CREATION, not of autonomy. (T-11.V.6:1)
Your whole creative function lies in your complete dependence on God, Whose function He shares with you. (T-11.V.6:2-3)
BY HIS WILLINGNESS TO SHARE IT, HE BECAME AS DEPENDENT ON YOU AS YOU ARE ON HIM. (T-11.V.6:3)
Do not ascribe the ego’s arrogance to HIM WHO WILLS NOT TO BE INDEPENDENT OF YOU. (T-11.V.6:4)
HE HAS INCLUDED YOU IN HIS AUTONOMY. (T-11.V.6:5)
Can you believe that autonomy is meaningful apart from Him? (T-11.V.6:6)
And then there is this.
The ego’s goal is quite explicitly ego autonomy. From the beginning, then, its purpose is to be separate, sufficient unto itself and independent of any power except its own. This is why it is the symbol of separation. (T-11.V.4:4-6)
The belief in ego autonomy is costing you the knowledge of your dependence on God, in which your freedom lies. The ego sees all dependency as threatening, and has twisted even your longing for God into a means of establishing itself. But do not be deceived by its interpretation of your conflict. ( T-11.V.6:7-9)
So, in this example the levels of awareness might look like a) being totally asleep, slave to the ego b) awakening, still slave to the ego c) awakening, part-time slave to the ego, practicing part-time servant of the spirit d) all in servant of the spirit, only doing exactly what the Holy Spirit says for the Holy Spirit’s purpose – no other goal but salvation – being tempted to make the illusion real – but as soon as it is recognized, forgiving it and taking it to the Holy Spirit for correction.
No matter where we are on the ladder of awareness, we always want our starting place to be truth. Imagine saying to someone who has asked you, “Hey. What’s that book you are studying about?” Your answer, as you look them in the eyes: ”You are the Son of God. You live in Heaven. God is your Father. You are VERY holy. That is the truth.” Are we having that “experience” right now?
(PAUSE. So here is another word – “experience” that has a different use depending on our level of awareness. We say experience to explain what we think is happening on the level of form but the truth is that we are not experiencing anything on this level. The mind directs the body and the personality self, telling them what to do, say, think and feel. This is an illusion of life. An illusion of “experience.” The ego made up physical and emotional sensations as deception tools. “You think that is air you are breathing?” There is absolutely nothing organic happening at this level. There are no decisions being made on this level. But that is another discussion. CONTINUE.)
No, or we would not seem to be here. We have placed our faith and belief in our miscreations, our ego projections. We made them “real” by our believing in them. The Holy Spirit’s job is to persuade us to give up our miscreations, save us from our miscreations, or salvation. Salvation is the undoing of all of this.
It is obvious, then, that inducing the mind to give up its miscreations is the only application of creative ability that is truly meaningful. (T-2.V.1:11)
We will not give our miscreations up if we still value them. By valuing them we make them real. In this process, we must first stop valuing the world and its stories, then the personality self, then the body and then the seemingly separated mind. Each one of those has a huge belief system that props up its “reality.” What a process! What a model! What a Guide! What a God! Onward to the Great Awakening!