The Obstacles to Peace

From Chapter 19

As peace extends from deep inside yourself to embrace all the Sonship & give it rest, it will encounter many obstacles, yet peace will gently cover them. The peace the Holy Spirit, deep within you & your brother, will quietly extend to every aspect of your life, surrounding you & your brother with glowing happiness & the calm awareness of complete protection. And you will carry its message of love, safety & freedom to everyone. The peace that already lies deeply within must first expand, & flow across the obstacles you placed before it. The Holy Spirit asks that you offer Him a resting place where you will rest in Him. When you look with gentle graciousness upon your brother, you are beholding Him, for you are looking where He is,& not apart from Him. You cannot see the Holy Spirit, but you can see your brothers truly. And the light in them will show you all that you need to see. When the peace in you has been extended to encompass everyone, the Holy Spirit’s function here will be accomplished.

The First Obstacle: The Desire to Get Rid of It (peace) – Peace cannot extend unless you keep it. You are the center from which peace radiates outward, to call others in.  He would bring peace to everyone, and how can He do this except through you?  You still oppose the Will of God just by a little. There is no order of difficulty among miracles because they are all the same.  Each is a gentle winning over from the appeal of guilt to the appeal of love. Every miracle is but the end of an illusion.  The insane wish to get rid of Him must produce conflict.  This feather of a wish…is all that remains of what once seemed to be the world.  How mighty can a little feather be before the great wings of truth?

  1. The Attraction of Guilt – produces fear of love for love would never look on guilt at all. Overlooking guilt completely, it sees no fear. Perception cannot obey two masters, each asking of different messages. To the ego sin means death, so atonement is achieved through murder. No one can die for anyone and death does not atone for sin. But you can live to show it’s not real.

The Second Obstacle: The Belief the Body is Valuable for What it Offers – Here is the attraction of guilt made manifest in the body, and seen in it.  “Pain” is the only “sacrifice” the Holy Spirit asks, and this He would remove. Look upon your brother as you would look upon me.  Forgive me your illusions, and release me from punishment for what I have not done.

  1. The Attraction of Pain –give the Holy Spirit the idea of sacrifice. The body brings neither peace nor turmoil; joy nor pain. It is a means not an end. Which is compatible with you – peace or guilt? Here is your choice and it is free.  Equating yourself with the body is an invitation to pain. The body transmits to you the feelings you want.


The Third Obstacle: The Attraction of Death – What seems to be the fear of death is really its attraction. Made by the ego, death’s dark shadow falls across all living things, because the ego is the “enemy” of life.  Yet a shadow cannot kill. You can escape through your forgiveness. When you accept the Holy Spirit’s purpose in place of the ego’s you renounce death.

  1. The Incorruptible Body – From the ego came sin, guilt and death, in opposition to life and innocence, and the Will of God Himself. The arrogance of sin, the pride of guilt, the sepulcher (note: something to do with martyr) of separation, are all part of your unrecognized dedication to death. Of itself the body is neither corruptible nor incorruptible. Death is seen as safety, the great dark savior from the light of truth. This is a dream of death. What but insanity could look upon the defeat of God and think it real?  The fear of death will go as its appeal is yielded to love’s real attraction.  What danger can assail the wholly innocent?  What can attack the guiltless? Remember the holy presence of the One given to you to be the Source of judgment. Give it to Him to judge for you, and say:  Take this from me & look upon it, judging it for me. Let me not see it as a sign of sin & death, nor use it for destruction. Teach me how not to make it an obstacle to peace but let You use it for me to facilitate peace.

The Fourth Obstacle: The Fear of God – Without the fear/attraction of death, you would remember your Father. The fourth obstacle hangs like a heavy veil before the face of Christ.  This is the darkest veil.  In your secret alliance with death and ego, you have agreed never to let the fear of God be lifted…the appeal is lost forever as love’s attraction stirs and calls to you.  What attracts you from beyond the veil is also deep within you, un-separated from it & completely one.

  1. The Lifting of the Veil – Forget not that you came this far together, you and your brother. And it was surely not the ego that led you here. No one can look upon the fear of God unterrified, unless he has accepted the Atonement and learned illusions are not real. You are afraid of God because you fear your brother. Those you do not forgive you fear. (Note: those who do not forgive, fear.) No one reaches love with fear beside him (note: as long as we’re not forgiving, fear will seem real). You see your brother’s madness, which you hate because you share it. You need forgiveness of your brother, for you will share in madness or in Heaven together. Choose which your brother is (friend or enemy), remembering that you will receive of him according to your choice. Join him in gladness, and remove all trace of guilt from his disturbed and tortured mind. Let us give redemption to each other and share in it, that we may rise as one in resurrection, not separate in death. See him as guiltless as I look on you, and overlook the sins he thinks he sees within himself. The crucified give pain because they are in pain. But the redeemed give joy because they have been healed of pain. Everyone gives as he receives, but he must choose what it will be that he receives.

 

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