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Contrary to what I had believed in my long study and practice of A Course in Miracles, I am being clearly shown that the body is certainly not meaningless in the higher sense. It has a sovereign role in the undoing of our utmost defense against God. This defense is indeed the greatest and most secret defense we hold, against awakening to our Holy Self as the infinite expression of God’s magnificent Will.
The ego’s unchallenged guarantee that death of the body is real and inevitable, is our most secret and cherished ‘escape’ from awakening to God’s Love as Self. As Jesus tells us in the Course,
“All forms of sickness, even unto death, are physical expressions of the fear of awakening. They are attempts to reinforce sleeping out of fear of waking. This is a pathetic way of trying not to see by rendering the faculties for seeing ineffectual.” T-8.IX.3: 2-4
Until we exhume this unconscious desire for death in all its forms, the ego will most certainly use the body as witness, to prove its case for separation is irrefutable. And we will continue to believe unconsciously, that death and God are both real. While these mutually exclusive beliefs are maintained together, we will unknowingly equate God with death. We will believe that God authors death and inadvertently we will avoid claiming our inheritance and dominion in Christ while we are in the body. In succumbing to the ego’s belief in death, we will reject our most feared outcome…of knowing our Holy Self as sharing God’s perfect invulnerable Will and Power.
We need the body in order to overcome the ego’s central dream, being the concept of death. While death is still real for us, while it remains our unconscious attraction, the full extent of embodying the Power of God within, cannot be known. We need the body to overcome death in all its forms. The ego’s obsession with attack is to prove the separation real.
“The body is the means by which God’s Son returns to sanity.” W-pll.5.4:1
Where else but in the body do we think we will overcome all the ego made to attack ourselves and to perpetuate the separation? Death is an unreal aberration, totally unnatural and antithetical to God’s Love. The means or the vehicle through which we attain the Real World’s perception…must be the body and life! Especially when we remember that we do not leave the world by death as the ego falsely portrays; we leave it by truth. “The world is not left by death but by truth…” T-3.VII.6:11
The body is indeed nothing, while mistakenly believed to be ‘who’ we are. It is a fence that the ego uses in defense against awakening to true and uninterrupted communication with God’s Love. The body is useless and meaningless while it remains the focus of our self and our life. The ego obsesses over the body (emotional and physical) as the ‘goal’ of all our intentions. Just think about it. In any one day, how many things do we think, say and do, all to appease or defend our emotional or physical body? We seek pleasure while avoiding pain. And in between, we plan and insure against ‘expected’ threats as well. What we do at the behavior level, means nothing. Yet the intent behind what we do, means everything. And the intent beneath much of what we do, until we examine it, arises from fear and not Love.
We Cannot Transcend What We Choose to Deny
We cannot transcend something we choose to deny. This is a monumental truth, one that is often overlooked. As long as we deny the body, we reject the healing of suffering’s cause within our mind.
The Course encourages us to recognize and release to Spirit everything the ego made for attack. In this surrender, a process of divine transformation occurs. Our special relationships are transformed into Holy Relationships. The ego world fades in our perception as the Real World rises to take its place. The ego’s hierarchy of illusions gives way to our living demonstration of the Course’s first Miracle Principle, “There is no order of difficulty in miracles. One is not “harder” or “bigger” than another. They are all the same. All expressions of love are maximal.” T-1.I.1.
But notice how the ego separates the body from this all-inclusive and miraculously transformative healing process. The ego says, it’s okay to transform our relationships with others and the world through forgiveness. But the body is nothing. It has no meaning. And therefore, the ego counsels, the body is to be held apart from Spirit’s all-encompassing thought-reversal and transformation. “The ego, which always wants to weaken the mind, tries to separate it from the body in an attempt to destroy it.” T-8.IX.6:1“Believing in the power of attack, the ego wants attack.” T-8.IX.6:8
“That forgiveness is healing needs to be understood, if the teacher of God is to make progress. The idea that a body can be sick is a central concept in the ego’s thought system. This thought gives the body autonomy, separates it from the mind, and keeps the idea of attack inviolate. If the body could be sick Atonement would be impossible. A body that can order a mind to do as it sees fit could merely take the place of God and prove salvation is impossible. What, then, is left to heal? The body has become lord of the mind. How could the mind be returned to the Holy Spirit unless the body is killed? And who would want salvation at such a price?” M-22.3.
As long as we still believe the body can be sick of its own volition, we will continue to exclude from healing this final and most coveted special relationship. The body is the ego’s last stronghold, its final hiding place. It is the last remaining hostage through which we witness attack and separation through scarcity, sickness and death. When it’s dominion over the body is overthrown by the healed mind, the ego thought system is demolished entirely. This is what Jesus came to demonstrate and teach.
While we join with the ego to deny the body’s key role in the healing of our mind, we unintentionally choose for continuing attack. Making the body mirror our split mind through our belief in its ability to cause pain or sickness, we choose attack by giving the body authority over the mind. And yet, the body holds no ability or power to change itself. It can’t get sick, get well, age or die. In truth, only the mind commands the body to do as its chosen teacher instructs.
“The Holy Spirit teaches you to use your body only to reach your brothers, so He can teach His message through you. This will heal them and therefore heal you. Everything used in accordance with its function as the Holy Spirit sees it cannot be sick. Everything used otherwise is. Do not allow the body to be a mirror of a split mind. Do not let it be an image of your own perception of littleness. Do not let it reflect your decision to attack. Health is seen as the natural state of everything when interpretation is left to the Holy Spirit, Who perceives no attack on anything. Health is the result of relinquishing all attempts to use the body lovelessly. Health is the beginning of the proper perspective on life under the guidance of the one Teacher Who knows what life is, being the Voice for Life Itself.” T-8.VIII.9.
The body plays a magnificent role in overcoming the ego’s dream, once we abdicate our original purpose for it. We must surrender the body completely to the Will of God, thus forming a Holy Relationship with the body. In its holiness, it can no longer be used to demonstrate attack in any form. The body becomes the vehicle through which we overcome everything the ego made to keep us apart from God’s Love.
In this, the purpose for the body becomes reversed. No longer a conduit for acquiring guilt through attack, it becomes a vehicle through which innocence is restored and miracles are witnessed. Such was the role of Jesus’ body. It witnessed that God’s power overcame all ego laws of attack, including sickness, pain, scarcity and death.
As the body’s purpose is shifted from fear to Love, from attack to healing, we recognize it now has only one purpose. It is here to extend Love and forgiveness. The body then becomes the means by which we undo all our ego projections. When the body is used exclusively in the service of Spirit, it cannot get sick. Because the body has been thoroughly abdicated to Spirit’s purpose, no form of sickness is immune to the miracle. The body is merely an aid to help us reach the home where God abides.
“With [this] as purpose is the body healed. It is not used to witness to the dream of separation and disease. Nor is it idly blamed for what it did not do. It serves to help the healing of God’s Son, and for this purpose it cannot be sick. It will not join a purpose not your own, and you have chosen that it not be sick. All miracles are based upon this choice, and given you the instant it is made. No forms of sickness are immune, because the choice cannot be made in terms of form. The choice of sickness seems to be of form, yet it is one, as is its opposite. And you are sick or well, accordingly.” T-28.VII.4.
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