Lesson 347: Judgment and the Culprit

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Today’s ACIM lesson, #347, says, Anger must come from judgment. Judgment is the weapon I would use against myself, to keep the miracle away from me.  Judgment is a weapon, but the one it is attacking is the one who is judging.  When I judge, I am working against myself. I am naming a culprit. From last night’s ACIM class, “Those who believe that peace can be defended, and that attack is justified on its behalf, cannot perceive it lies within them.” It always goes back to the recognition that “All attack is Self attack.” The responsibility for choosing peace comes from within.  The human tendency is to blame the stimuli – whatever sets us off is the culprit; yet each of us is responsible for our own reactions.  “When you attack, you are denying yourself. You are specifically teaching yourself that you are not what you are.” Going back to last night’s reading, “This course is easy just because it makes no compromise. Yet it seems difficult to those who still believe that compromise is possible.”

Ego always wants to make exceptions.  Ego always wants to make what is the same different.  The only way to escape is to rise above it. “There is no safety in a battleground. You can look down on it in safety from above and not be touched. But from within it you can find no safety.” As long as forgiveness cannot be accepted, the conflict remains because judgment remains. “Forgiveness is not real unless it brings a healing to your brother and yourself. You must attest his sins have no effect on you to demonstrate they are not real. How else could he be guiltless?” It is yet another case of making an error real.  If someone calls me stupid and I get upset with them then I must agree that they are right, otherwise why would I care? “His pardon and your hurt cannot exist together. One denies the other and must make it false.”  Ego is fighting to retain duality, where Atonement cannot be, and therefore healing cannot occur.  As the Manual for Teachers says, “Healing and Atonement are not related; they are identical. There is no order of difficulty in miracles because there are no degrees of Atonement.”

Ah!  From last year’s writing:

lesson 347, ACIM

Judgment and the Culprit

As much as I like to think that I am pretty non-judgmental, I still catch myself daily, and it is easy for me to notice that those instants are the places I still need to heal within myself; that judgment is rightfully labeled as a weapon I use against myself.  Ego wants to demand, “But why?” That’s its move to deflect responsibility.  It’s like the kid who broke the candy bowl, standing boldly to demand someone ‘fess up; knowing that no one can or will since he is the culprit.

Culprit – the very word infers guilt/culpability.  As I read today’s lesson, the question bouncing around my brain like some kid in a jumpy house is “how do I expunge this guilt?”  If I am the one who is attacking myself with judgment, how do I eradicate that darkness?  Ego wants to declare war, but when the self declares war on itself that Is what’s known as cancer (or at least some sort of auto-immune disease).

The answer is the Holy Spirit.  It is not my job to purify myself; I can’t do it myself.   “1 We said before that the Holy Spirit is evaluative, and must be. He sorts out the true from the false in your mind, and teaches you to judge every thought you allow to enter it in the light of what God put there. Whatever is in accord with this light He retains, to strengthen the Kingdom in you. What is partly in accord with it He accepts and purifies. But what is out of accord entirely He rejects by judging against. This is how He keeps the Kingdom perfectly consistent and perfectly unified.”

In a mere moment of willingness, everything can shift; the “culprit” can be saved.  This is what we Course students refer to as the holy instant.

“1 The holy instant is the Holy Spirit’s most useful learning device for teaching you love’s meaning. For its purpose is to suspend judgment entirely. judgment always rests on the past, for past experience is the basis on which you judge. judgment becomes impossible without the past, for without it you do not understand anything. You would make no attempt to judge, because it would be quite apparent to you that you do not understand what anything means. You are afraid of this because you believe that without the ego, all would be chaos. Yet I assure you that without the ego, all would be love.”

Which leads us to today’s lesson:

Lesson 347

Anger must come from judgment. Judgment is
The weapon I would use against myself,
To keep the miracle away from me.

Father, I want what goes against my will, and do not want what is my will to have. Straighten my mind, my Father. It is sick. But You have offered freedom, and I choose to claim Your gift today. And so I give all judgment to the One You gave to me to judge for me. He sees what I behold, and yet He knows the truth. He looks on pain, and yet He understands it is not real, and in His understanding it is healed. He gives the miracles my dreams would hide from my awareness. Let Him judge today. I do not know my will, but He is sure it is Your Own. And He will speak for me, and call Your miracles to come to me.

Listen today. Be very still, and hear the gentle Voice for God assuring you that He has judged you as the Son He loves.

© Foundation for Inner Peace • PO Box 598 • Mill Valley, CA  94942-0598


Last night, I found myself reading a book on the benefits of doing a liver and gallbladder cleanse.  I have felt upset with myself lately because I have inadvertently put on a good 10 pounds that I haven’t carried in over five years.  If there is anger, self-recrimination, this is the place it arises.  I want to find a culprit.  I want to find something “out there” to blame and to cure the problem.

I end of feeling confused which means I know I am in the thick of ego.   Ego loves confusion.  As long as I am feeling confused, I know I have been listening to the wrong voice.

Anything that isn’t love is a call for love. I appear to live in a body and the Course says, “The body is the symbol of the ego, as the ego is the symbol of the separation. And both are nothing more than attempts to limit communication, and thereby to make it impossible.”  Ego does not want me to hear the Holy Spirit because if I listen to Him then I will stop listening to it.

“2The body exists in a world that seems to contain two voices fighting for its possession. In this perceived constellation the body is seen as capable of shifting its allegiance from one to the other, making the concepts of both health and sickness meaningful. “   

As I read my book last night, I knew that my body needs purification, that I need to eliminate that which no longer serves me.

“A sick body does not make any sense. It could not make sense because sickness is not what the body is for. Sickness is meaningful only if the two basic premises on which the ego’s interpretation of the body rests are true; that the body is for attack, and that you are a body. Without these premises sickness is inconceivable.”

If I am to let go of judging, I must quit trying to figure it all out.  Figuring it out is an attempt to obscure communication.

“I give all judgment to the One You gave to me to judge for me. He sees what I behold, and yet He knows the truth.”

“I do not know what anything is for.”  Someday, I hope to remember that well enough so that I let go of trying to figure it all out and simply allow God to lead me.

Then there will be no culprit, for sinlessness will be my home.

Sinlessness is my home.

Namaste, my friends, Namaste.



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