[acimlessons_list] Lesson 255 - September 12
sue at circleofa.org
Thu Sep 11 06:02:35 EDT 2008
LESSON 255 - SEPTEMBER 12
"THIS DAY I CHOOSE TO SPEND IN PERFECT PEACE."
See complete Part II Practice Instructions.
A short summary:
* Read the commentary paragraph slowly and personally.
* Pray the prayer, perhaps several times.
* Morning and evening: Repeat the idea and then spend time in Open Mind
* Hourly remembrance: Repeat the idea and then spend a quiet moment in
* Frequent reminders: Repeat the idea often within each hour.
* Response to temptation: Repeat the idea whenever upset, to restore peace.
* Read the "What Is" section slowly and thoughtfully once during the day.
Practice comments: Today is the first of three days of peace in Part II (the
other two are 273 and 286). All are attempts to have a day of undisturbed
peace, and all highlight the importance of our ability to have such a day.
So really "give today to finding" (1:6) the peace God wills for you. Use
your repetition of paragraphs 1 and 2 as a device for dedicating the day to
this purpose. Practice frequently, in the faith that this peace really is
there, and that your practice can lay hold of it for you.
Peace does not seem to be purely a matter of choice: "It does not seem to me
that I can choose to have but peace today" (1:1). Our egos would have us
believe that peace can be taken from us, or given to us, by things outside
our minds. It is not so.
If I am God's Son, and therefore like Himself, I have the power of decision,
the power to simply <choose> peace (1:2-3). God says it is so; let me have
faith in Him, and let me act upon that faith. Let me give it a try! Let me
choose to spend this day in perfect peace. The more I determine to "give
today to finding what my Father wills for me," which is the peace of Heaven,
and "accepting it as mine" (1:6), the more I will experience that peace. I
will probably also find a lot of things that pop up trying to disturb that
peace. But I can respond to these things simply by saying, "I would choose
peace instead of this," or "This cannot take away the peace my Father has
given me." As I do this, the peace I choose and experience will "bear
witness to the truth of what He says" (1:4).
Remember, your mental state isn't perfect, nor is it expected to be perfect.
You are in training; this is a course in mind training. When I practice
guitar chords, especially new ones, at first placing my fingers in the right
position takes a lot of concentration and effort. I am forced to break the
rhythm of the song, slowing down so I can place my fingers just so. I don't
expect to get it right every time. Getting it wrong and correcting myself is
part of the training. Eventually, with time, my fingers start forming a
habit pattern; they go more and more frequently into the right configuration
to strike the chord without any buzzing or dead notes. The training period
is a time of doing it wrong, doing it deliberately with conscious
concentration, until it becomes a habit I no longer have to think about.
That is what we are doing in these lessons: practicing the habit of peace.
Our aim today is to spend the day with God (2:1). We, His Son, have not
forgotten Him, and our practice is witness to that fact. The peace of God is
in our minds, where He put it. We can find it, we can choose to spend our
day there, in peace, with Him. We <can> do this; God assures us we can. So
let us practice. Let us begin. Let us accept His peace as our own, and give
it to all our Father's Sons, along with ourselves (1:6).
WHAT IS SIN?
PART 5: W-PII.4.3:1-2
Our illusions come from, or issue from, our untrue thoughts. Illusions are
not really "things" at all; they are symbols, standing for imaginary things
(3:1). They are like a mirage, a picture of something that is not really
there at all. Our thoughts of lack, our feelings of unworthiness, our guilt
and fear, the appearance of the world attacking us, even our bodies
themselves--all of them are illusions, mirages, symbols representing
Sin is "the home of all illusions" (3:1). The idea of our inner corruption,
our bent nature, houses every illusion. The thought of sin and guilt makes
an environment that fosters and nourishes every illusion. What needs
changing is that thought of the mind. Take away the thought of sin, and our
illusions have no place to live. They simply fall down into dust.
These illusions, which come from untrue thoughts and make "sin" their
dwelling place, "are the 'proof' that what has no reality is real" (3:2).
Our bodies seem to prove to us that sickness and death are real, for
instance. Our senses seem to prove that pain is real. Our eyes and ears see
all kinds of evidence of guilt, of the reality of loss, and of the weakness
of love. The world seems to prove that either God does not exist, or that He
is angry with us. These things that our illusions seem to prove have no
reality at all, and yet they seem real to us. All of this is housed in our
belief in sin, and without that belief, they would simply cease to be.
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