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271 Christ's is the vision I will use today.

Colors are brighter when I use Christ's vision.
My heart is softer when I look with the eyes of Christ.
My eyes look beyond when I use Christ's vision.
My mood is light as champagne bubbles, when I look with the eyes of Christ.
True compassion is mine as I use Christ's vision.. I feel with others.
Peace envelops me when I look upon the world with the eyes of Christ.
When I see with Christ's eyes my soul is smooth and serene like a clear lake in the moonlight.
A delicious mystery envelops all things of Earth, when I use the vision of Christ.
Creation's gentleness is all I see, when I look upon it with the eyes of Christ.

271 Christ's is the vision I will use today.

MT: I am trying, JC. But I get scared and find all sorts of reasons to stop.
JC: Then you are not ready. Live life today, just as it is. You spent a while meditating, now trust on guidance and go about your business.
MT: I always think I should be doing more.
JC: You already have an A in this course. Striving is of the ego--even striving to be holier. Give yourself the same kindness you offer to your brother.
MT: Today I reap the harvest of forgiveness. Today I am with you in Paradise.



272 How can illusions satisfy God's Son?

MT: That's a rhetorical question, given what we've learned all along.
God: And what you just said is a judgment. How can the illusion of judgment satisfy you? The illusion that you are larger than God because you found fault with God?
MT: All right, all right, don't get all huffy. I was just searching for something to say. Of course, if it's an illusion, it can never satisfy. What does on say to that!
God: That is the point, to still the mind. That's the point of the whole final section of ACIM, the end of random firings of your brain. When you cease trying to figure things out yourself, you open the door to Me.
MT: The priceless gift of a silent mind.
God: Indeed.

272 How can illusions satisfy God's Son?

MT: It's obvious. They can't.
JC: It might pay to look at this--where do you still look to illusions for satisfaction?
MT: Just recently I became aware of a fantasy world I mostly live in. It's filled with plans that I don't carry out. Call it procrastination. I think it's a way of avoiding the inevitable return to God.
JC: The plans that you never bring to fruition take the place of direct experience. Yet you may plan and dream and make up stories about the hero of the dream. This does not matter, as long as you know that you are the dreamer. The dream is not you. It is not the Son of God. The dreamer merely plays with the dream.
MT: That's a more useful attitude, I think. It takes the grim seriousness away.
JC: The roses outside your window--let them speak to you of God's love.
MT: All things are echoes of the Voice for God, now and forever.

272 How can illusions satisfy God's Son?

MT: I don't know what to say. I want to say something, preferably brilliant, but there's nothing.
JC: But you are willing.
MT: I am also sleepy. The Feldenkrais session--how physically tired I get. I am also terribly bored. I long for something to challenge me. Computer games no longer do it for me. Should I just go ahead and die?
JC: I love you. You cannot die. It is impossible. You can sacrifice your body, but Spirit goes on.
MT: So I can't opt out. I came here for a reason. Yet I feel sad and bored. What's happening to me?
JC: You will go on. Things will change in surprising ways. Walk carefully now, because the road you travel is new.
MT: Oh JC, hold my hand, show me the steps, the rocks on the path.
JC: You know I will. You know I do.



273 The stillness of the peace of God is mine.

God, You are with me today. You are within me, all around me, in everything I touch, see, smell and taste. You are in every fiber of my body, the Force that propels every cell of this body. You are Life itself, still and constant, while the things of Earth move and strive. You are the pause between breaths, the moment when I stand suspended between heaven and earth. You are mine, I am yours, forever and ever.

273 The stillness of the peace of God is mine.

God, You are with me today. You are within me, all around me, in everything I touch, see, smell and taste. You are the invisible Force in every fiber of my body. You are Life itself, constant and still as the things of Earth move and strive. You are the pause between breaths, the moment I stand suspended between heaven and earth. You are mine, I am yours, forever and ever.



274 Today belongs to love. Let me not fear.

MT: You juxtapose love and fear like light and darkness--one enters, the other disappears. You couldn't be more to the point, short of forcing me to love, and that would not work.
JC: Your homework for today is to practice love. You will find fear receding until it disappears entirely, as if it never existed. But you are the one to do it. As you say, I will never force you to do anything. You want peace, practice love.
MT: You sound stern, like my Dad.
JC: And remember that God created you and His love for you is infinite and eternal. Your Dad was looking for sins and making them real, but I say, you are sinless and a holy Son of God.
MT: It's good to hear it from you! What an affirmation! I have nothing to fear, because I am sinless and a holy Son of God. Thank you.



275 (2005) God's healing Voice protects all things today.

MT: Your voice? Why voice and no hand? Or vision? I know that the words You use are always carefully chosen. I would like to understand why you are talking about voice.
God: That really plucked a dissonant chord within you.
MT: Chord, indeed! There goes sound again.
God: You are quite clever about representational systems, aren’t you.
MT: My cleverness aside, as I read on, the emphasis is on my protecting the world through hearing your Voice and serving as its mouthpiece, so to speak. Let me say that one annoying trait of mine is the constant mind chatter. I go through the world talking to myself, like a parent giving mini-lectures. And . . . as long as I talk, I can't hear You.
God: I sent you a teacher (JH) to remind you to focus on your breath. I sent you the Castaneda videos on quieting the mind. But it has to be a priority.
MT: The chatter is tenacious, like a cage full of magpies. My head feels out of control. I'm no closer to a silent mind than I was ten years ago. All I need now is to chatter out loud, and men in white coats will show up with Thorazine.
God: Since you like dialogue, why not listen, and talk back, to Me today? All through the day, as long and as much as you can remember? The imaginary Other in your head may as well be God.
MT: That's a new idea! It even ties in with the lesson! Who would've thought!

275 God's healing Voice protects all things today.

MT: Reading my post on this lesson a year ago, JC, it seems that I'm making progress. The chatter in my head has faded into the background. It's still there, but it doesn't bother me anymore, not like it once did.
JC: So today, summon God's Voice to accompany you.
MT: Good idea. I can listen to God's Voice instead of my own chatter, although it still has to sound like my own voice because anything else would immediately send me into a panic.
JC: It may be so, but eventually you will make usual the unusual. Miracles will be natural to you.
MT: I can't wait . .

275 God's healing Voice protects all things today.

MT: A Voice that protects . . . tell me more.
JC: This is about listening.
MT: I have a hard time listening. My mind fills God's wavelength with its chatter.
JC: But no. Do not define yourself as lacking. God's Voice is available to you at all times. It comes through this writing, the letters that magically appear on the screen. It comes through the chirping of birds outside and the gentle snoring of the dog curled up by the door. God's healing Voice speaks to you as you move and breathe. Listen! Perhaps you hear an ancient song long forgotten, a note so sweet that tears fill your eyes. Listen today. God's healing Voice calls to all things of earth today.



276 The Word of God is given me to speak.

MT: I inherited this missionary zeal--gotta save the world--but on the other hand I feel rooted to one spot. It is far easier to hole up at home and peck at the computer. I think I am too isolated, but I avoid human contact every chance I get. I would love to learn web design from Carl, but when I get stuck I just give up instead of calling him with my question. The rule I
live by is, don't be a bother. People have more important things to do.
JC: This is a rule you want to change, no?
MT: You bet. This rule is a huge handicap. I want you to show me a new way.
JC: Are others a bother to you? You have lived your life by the principle of not bothering others, minimizing your needs and concerns and wishes and wants. What happens is that others don't bother you! Clients don't come to you, and you blame yourself for not contributing of your gifts, but at various levels you push them away. You are isolated, but when you meet someone in the street and they start to talk, you go inside and plan your quick exit.
MT: So, where does that leave me? I am projecting my "don't bother me" onto the world, fantasizing that the world has better things to do. So how do I undo the projection?
JC: The projection is not real. It is a cardboard screen between you and your brothers. What is real is speaking the word of God: "You are as pure and holy as God Himself."

276 The Word of God is given me to speak.

MT: A theme that goes back to my teens, JC--I blamed myself for holding my light under a barrel (as the Bible puts it).
JC: Self blame, and a knowing behind it.
MT: You could say that. Anything I need to see differently here?
JC: Just this: do not generate "light under a barrel" and then make it real. As you think, so shall you do.
MT: Oh. So the different seeing is not about this supposed defect of mine. It is about forgiving myself! Yes, I was, in my teens, a priggish fault-finder.
JC: Give of your abundance, not of your want!

276 The Word of God is given me to speak.

So I don't just stand by, mute and helpless. I act as I am guided. It is so easy to avoid guidance, to find reasons to do nothing, so easy to listen to the fearful voice of the ego! Yet God walks with me, His hand in mine, His sure Voice offering quiet reminders of who I am and who my brother is.


 

277 Let me not bind your Son with laws that I have made.

I bound myself and those I loved with Draconian laws. “Only death is real. There is no God. The world is a cruel, cold and empty place.” The heart is crushed under these thoughts, even as we laugh to hide our despair--"he who dies with the most toys wins," "life is a bitch, and then you die.”

What foolishness. God is here, now, holding me with arms of love. Let me today remember the Law of Love: “I am as God created me. There is no death. The Son of God is free.” Thus I open my heart to others. I open my heart to myself today.

277 Let me not bind Your Son with laws I made.

MT: Tell me if, or where, I am doing this in my life.
JC: Enough self-examination! This is one way that you bind yourself. To bring up an example you have used in the past, a gardener can spend all his time digging weeds, or he can plant flowers that will crowd out weeds.
MT: You want me to live life. Just plain live life. I do tend to make things complicated.
JC: Let go of all preoccupations, tasks, ingenious feats of self-improvement. Come wholly empty-handed unto your God. He knows the way to you!


 

278 If I am bound, my Father is not free.

MT: That's a sweeping statement, JC. A startling statement. How could God be unfree?
JC: God cannot be unfree. But if you, who are created by God in His image, are bound, you think God unfree also. You are part of God, remember?
MT: You mean, I make God unfree by projecting my shabby personality on Him? By making Him into a petty tyrant?
JC: Exactly. Thus you deny God, and yourself, the power of love.
MT: So is there any truth to the statement?
JC: It is an "if--then" statement, that's all. It is not a statement about God OR you. You are not bound, and neither is God unfree. Do not attempt to make yourself into something you are not.

278 If I am bound, my Father is not free.

And why is that? Because my Father and I are one. It follows that if I am bound, my brother is not free. If my brother is bound, I am not free. We enter the Kingdom two by two!



279 Creation's freedom promises my own.


MT: I await a future freedom, when I am good enough and holy enough, but You tell me freedom is mine already.
God: By awaiting future release, you declare yourself unfree. There is no need for this. It is an old pattern of yours, to trade today's experience for tomorrow's hope. You raised your children, such a priceless and fleeting part of your life, while waiting for life to begin after they grew up. Talk about illusions!
MT: This is a scary issue. What if I should totally enjoy the moment! What would happen if I didn't predict the morrow and plan for it! I take the exit lane on the freeway miles before the exit finally comes up. To take chances—to trust—to create—how I long for that. To think hard about every step I take, that's so ungrounding.
God: What can I say to that, except that you have to try? That only action will water and fertilize faith? That you don't learn to trust if you don't trust? Routine is safe, boring and deadly.
MT: So it is. I am bored with routine, even if it hasn’t killed me yet.
God: Break up the patterns of life, even those that seem so good and necessary. Freedom is yours already, but you have ease that grip on the imaginary bars of your imaginary jail cell.

279 Creation's freedom promises my own.

I will no longer bind the Son with laws that I have made. Who walks with me? Today I am free, my hand in His. Today I drink from the well of God's love.



280 What limits can I lay upon God's Son?

MT: OK, dear God, I know you're doing your best to empower me. Now, do I accept your bounty or do I choose darkness for one more day?
God: Not much of a choice, is it?
MT: No choice, really. Ultimately I'll have to choose the path you assigned to me. I can delay and dream a little longer, or a lot longer. I feel sad that I hang on so tenaciously to the illusion. There have been several Awakened Ones around me, and I've tasted freedom.
God: The sadness is, in itself, part of the illusion. My path is one of strength, lightness, and joy.
MT: And God Himself shall wipe away all tears! How tender these words. Let me remember them today.


 

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