Each day should be devoted to
miracles. The purpose of time is to enable you to learn
how to use time constructively.
It is thus a teaching device and a means to an end.
Time will cease when it is no longer
useful in facilitating learning.
Basically, this principle is talking
about the fundamental goal of the Course, which is to help us spend every
hour of our day, all the days of our lives, continually seeing things as
the Holy Spirit has us see them. This means to continue to see everything
that occurs in our lives as a lesson that He would have us learn -- that
every single thing that occurs is a learning opportunity if we avail ourselves
of that learning. Thus, everything that confronts us should be seen as
an opportunity of choosing either the ego's grievance or the Holy Spirit's
Q: There are times
during the day when my ego screams so loud that I do not remember to turn
to the Holy Spirit. If I began my day with a blanket statement: "Holy Spirit,
please be with me all day," would that happen?
A: I doubt it.
If you do that and then do not think of Him at any other point, that is
magic. What A Course in Miracles would say is that you should start
your day that way and think of Him all the rest of the day, too. Otherwise,
you are going to hope that going on automatic pilot will take care of everything.
In one sense that is true, if you really go on automatic pilot. But I think
that that requires a tremendous amount of discipline, and if we had that
kind of discipline, then we would not need a workbook. In the beginning
of Chapter 30 is a section called "Rules for Decision" (text, p. 581; T-30.1)
which actually is a very simple way of telling us how we should begin.
It says exactly what you are saying, but then it elaborates on what you
should do when you forget. I think that we should start our day like that,
but then we should continually reinforce it. Otherwise, it is very, very
easy to fall back onto the ego.
Q: I find one of
the reasons why I cannot always remember to ask to see it through the vision
of the Holy Spirit is that there is a part of me, in spite of all my conscious
decisions, that still wants to see it my way. Now, that is not a conscious
part of me. It is always a shock when I discover it is there. What do you
do about the unconscious?
A: When you do
become aware of it, you do not feel guilty about it, and what you try to
do is become more and more sensitive to when that unconscious part manifests
itself. That is what happens when you work with this material a while.
It may seem as if your life is getting worse or you are becoming more unhappy.
What is really happening is that you are becoming more sensitive to things
in yourself that otherwise you would not have known about. What you try
to do is just be aware of when you are projecting. It is a lot of hard
work, and it is not easy. It requires a vigilance.
The third lesson of the Holy Spirit
in Chapter 6, "Be Vigilant Only for God and His Kingdom" (text, p. 100;
T-6.V.C), really means be vigilant against the ego; and it does require
a lot of hard work. This really is mind training, always to be thinking
of the other way of looking at something. There is a line in the text that
drives everyone crazy because everyone recognizes what it means. It says,
"Do you prefer that you be right or happy?" (text, p. 673; T-29.VII.1:9).
Q: Just on the
same topic, there is a section in the Course that deals with a set of questions,
and the last one answers the three before it; it asks the
A: "And do I want
to see what I denied because it is the truth?" (text, p. 432; T-2l.VII.5.14)
All this is really part of that last obstacle to peace, the fear of God
(text, p. 391; T-19.IV.D), because the ego is always teaching us that the
truth, if we were really to look at it, would destroy us. The truth of
us is so awful and so devastating, because we are such wretched people,
that if we really looked at it, God would strike us dead. What has to happen
is that we chip away at the thought system which teaches us that and realize
the truth is not that we are this terrible person, but that we are this
holy person who is God's Son. That takes a lot of work because the other
thought system is so much a part of us.
The section called "The Fear to Look
Within" (text, p. 423; T-21.IV) first describes what the ego tells us we
would see if we looked within: a hopelessly sinful person. Then it says,
but what if you looked within and you saw that there was no sin? That is
the real fear; but it is the ego's fear. That is why we prefer to look
at things our way rather than God's way. If the world is an hallucination
and we made it all up, and, furthermore, this world was made as an attack
on God, as the Course teaches (workbook, p. 408; W-pll.3.2:1), then it
means that this world is a great symbol of our sin against God. If it is
not there, then the whole thing is made up; it is just all silly stuff.
This is when the ego gets terrified. That the whole world of sin is nothing
but just a silly mistake is the one thing the ego will never let us look
at. That is why, when the Course repeatedly says there is no sin, the ego
does not like that at all. The entire ego thought system is predicated
on sin. That is what makes this world real, which means it denies the reality
of God's Will.
"The purpose of time is to enable you
to learn how to use time constructively." That is what I said earlier:
The purpose of time is to teach us that there is no time. It is, thus,
a teaching device and a means to an end, which is the way A Course in
Miracles looks at everything in this world. Nothing in the world is
an end in itself -- nothing is real in itself -- it is merely a teaching
device. But do not deny the world or the body; that is not what the Course
teaches. Rather, we should look at them differently. Everything that occurs,
to the extent that it pushes our buttons or upsets us in any way, becomes
an opportunity for us to learn our lessons. This not only includes things
in our personal world, but in the larger world as well -- things like famine,
the Holocaust, the crucifixion. We do not deny them or their occurrence
within the world of illusion, but we do change the way we look at them:
from victims and victimizers, to all people -- including ourselves -- calling
out for the love we do not believe we deserve.
This whole world is a classroom: our
individual lives are individual classes that we take within this University.
This whole path then becomes like a curriculum that we have to learn, and
our individual experiences become specific classes that we take to undo
the guilt that we have made specific. That is the purpose of the world,
the purpose of time.
"Time will cease when it is no longer
useful in facilitating learning." When we have fulfilled the purpose of
time, when every last separated child of God returns to his or her right
mind -- that is what A Course in Miracles calls the Second Coming,
which is the awakening of the Son from his bad dream. This makes way for
the Last Judgment, which is the final sorting out of truth from illusion.
That is when the entire world disappears, as the Course says, back into
the nothingness from which it came (manual, p. 81; C-4.4:5).