This waking up process is a trip, to be sure. We started last night’s ACIM group discussion by discussing “the bridge.” Now, in reality, there is no bridge. We are already in the “real world” but because we are entrenched in illusions, we don’t recognize where we are, or what we have. The “bridge” is really just waking up to what already is, but since most of us (me) aren’t even aware, most of the time anyway, that there is a different way of being in the world, it’s easy to overlook. We think there is a bridge to cross. That’s ego way of trying to make illusions real. The “Truth” (Heaven, the Real World) is “over there,” across the bridge. It’s the same trick as thinking happiness is in the future. It is an ego gambit to keep up from waking up NOW.
“7 The bridge itself is nothing more than a transition in the perspective of reality.”
We think there is a bridge to cross and as long as we are steeped in illusion, there is, yet the bridge itself is an illusion. It is the idea that we are someplace we can’t really be – outside of the heart of God. To help us remember this, the Course provides its version of the Lord’s Prayer:
“12 Forgive us our illusions, Father, and help us to accept our true relationship with You, in which there are no illusions, and where none can ever enter. Our holiness is Yours. What can there be in us that needs forgiveness when Yours is perfect? The sleep of forgetfulness is only the unwillingness to remember Your forgiveness and Your Love. Let us not wander into temptation, for the temptation of the Son of God is not Your Will. And let us receive only what You have given, and accept but this into the minds which You created and which You love. Amen. “
Interestingly, I discovered in my new CE Version of the Course that when Helen was taking the dictation for this down, she originally thought she had finally received proof that she was crazy and that she had at last discovered “a wild incoherence” when the Voice shifted in style and tense. (She had a deep fear that the Voice she was hearing was a figment of her imagination.) While she was writing it down, Jesus reassured her. “’Just write it as it occurs to you,’ said the silent Voice, very distinctly. ‘You will recognize it later.’”*
It wasn’t until the next day when she shared it with Bill Thetford that the obvious correlation dawned on her. Helen, like all of us, had to work at shelving her ego’s doubts and fears. (In her words, “I seemed to be virtually unreassurable on the point.”)
It seems all of us suffer from our illusions. The crossing of the bridge is waking up from believing in them. (You believe in what you made.)
“The real purpose of this world is to use it to correct your unbelief. You can never control the effects of fear yourself, because you made fear, and you believe in what you made. In attitude, then, though not in content, you resemble your Creator, Who has perfect faith in His creations because He created them. Belief produces the acceptance of existence. That is why you can believe what no one else thinks is true. It is true for you because it was made by you.”
We believe in the illusions because we made them.
“The betrayal of the Son of God lies only in illusions, and all his ‘sins’ are but his own imagining. His reality is forever sinless. He need not be forgiven but awakened. In his dreams he has betrayed himself, his brothers and his God. Yet what is done in dreams has not been really done. It is impossible to convince the dreamer that this is so, for dreams are what they are because of their illusion of reality. Only in waking is the full release from them, for only then does it become perfectly apparent that they had no effect upon reality at all, and did not change it.”
In this experience of being human, it happens that there are pieces of life that we (I) would withhold from God. This is hardly my first time noticing this, but since it was part of last night’s discussion, I bring it up. It is this willingness to withhold parts of our lives (my life) from God that perpetuates the illusions.
The crazy part is that when I am neglecting to take things to God, I am making it harder than it needs to be. (Which I have noticed is sometimes just an excuse to hold onto my grievances and my desire to make “others” guilt and/or wrong.)
“3 When you maintain that there must be an order of difficulty in miracles, all you mean is that there are some things you would withhold from truth. You believe truth cannot deal with them only because you would keep them from truth. Very simply, your lack of faith in the power that heals all pain arises from your wish to retain some aspects of reality for fantasy. If you but realized what this must do to your appreciation of the whole! What you reserve for yourself, you take away from Him Who would release you. Unless you give it back, it is inevitable that your perspective on reality be warped and uncorrected.”
As usual, it really comes down to this twisted notion that God isn’t going to give me what I really want. And that’s sort of true. It’s true as long as I believe that what I really want is ego candy – vengeance, manipulation, guilt, fear, the desire to be right. That’s NOT what I really want, but until I know that, I will still be attracted to it. Sort of like until you figure out that sugar makes you feel like shit, you still crave it. And sometimes even after you figure it out, you still reach for it because – tell me why again exactly????? Oh yeah, because we/you/I are insane.
“5 Think you that you can bring truth to fantasy, and learn what truth means from the perspective of illusions? Truth has no meaning in illusion. The frame of reference for its meaning must be itself. When you try to bring truth to illusions, you are trying to make illusions real, and keep them by justifying your belief in them. “
Fortunately, the illusions don’t matter. That is why the Course emphasizes forgiveness, so we will let ourselves off the hook. “Yet as you cross to join it, it will join with you and become one with you. And you will think, in glad astonishment, that for all this you gave up nothing! “ “…learn how much awaits you for the simple willingness to give up nothing because it is nothing.”
“Forgive us our illusions, Father, and help us to accept our true relationship with You, in which there are no illusions, and where none can ever enter.”
To cross the bridge to the “real world” requires only the willingness to trade peace for the hell we have made. It requires the realization that the world of illusions holds nothing that we want. It requires forgiving us our illusions.
Because God was never concerned about our apparent transgressions because they never happened. He never for a moment gave credence to our insanity. I know a fair amount of people who have parents who are starting to lose their memories. The have dementia or Alzheimer’s (though the sickness isn’t real but for the moment, we are going to believe in the illusions we made!). Anyway, the point here is that when you have a discussion with these older folks, you don’t bother to disavow them of their delusions. You allow them their fantasies while knowing it is not truth.
Which is sort of what God does. He doesn’t “correct” them for us because they are not real.
Only the love is real, and it is enough.
Namaste, my friends, Namaste.
* A Course in Miracles: Complete and Annotated Edition Hardcover – January 20, 2017 by Helen Schucman (Author), Robert Perry (Editor), Greg Mackie (Editor), Cameo 25: The Course’s Version of the Lord’s Prayer