9. Healing and The Last Judgement. Workshop 9 of 12 based on ACIM
Have you ever judged a person or a situation, and then later found out (usually much to your embarrassment) that you were completely wrong? Have you ever thought you saw something, and then found out later that what you saw wasn’t true at all?
Our ability to judge is faulty. We know this, and yet we still rely solely on our own judgment when it comes to absolutely everything.
We also think we know what is best for us. We judge our lives, and decide what we need, and many of us then subsequently pray for these needs to be met.
Prayer and judgment are intricately related.
And why does it seem that some prayers are answered while others are not? This has confused us since time began. Are we doing something wrong when we seem to receive no answer or the seeming opposite answer to what we’ve prayed for?
Some tell us that God gives us only what is best for us.
I do not accept that answer. This answer implies that sometimes, pain and suffering are what God thinks is best for us, because most of the time, that’s all it seems we receive. I do not accept the idea that God would send us pain and suffering “for our own good.” It sounds like punishment, and I do not believe for a second that a God Who loves us without condition would send us punishment. These two characteristics are contradictory.
So what’s the problem?
The problem lies directly with the fact that based upon our own judgment, we do not know what we truly want or need, and so we indirectly “ask” for things that make us unhappy. We have already judged our situation and think we know the solution, and so we ask God to give us what we think we need. And we have decided what is best for us, based upon faulty judgment and we have decided it alone.
How often, if ever, have you prayed to know God’s opinion in any given situation? Have you ever asked to know His Will for you?
Most of us have never or rarely thought to ask this question. We may have asked “thy will be done” but we have never asked to know exactly what His Will for us is. We just hope it’s the same as what we want. And if we do not get what we want, then we assume that must’ve been “God’s Will” - and boy oh boy must we be in big trouble, because the answer we’ve received has only seemed to increase our suffering!
What we do not realize is that God’s Will is to always give us what we ask for. We just do not recognize how and what we are “asking” for. Once we recognize the nature and true power of prayer; (or power of manifestation, or “Law of Attraction” as some have called it), and how to release all our judgment of the world as we see it, we will become miracle workers.
No prayer ever goes un-answered.
It is we who do not know how to ask the right questions.
It we who have passed judgment on a situation we know nothing about, and have failed to ask to see things correctly – as God sees them. We have failed to ask His Will in every situation.
It is we who have failed to ask that God’s Will be done, and not our own.
The problem is, we are not exactly sure what God’s Will is, and therefore we do not trust that it will be an improvement to our situation. Especially for those of us who have believed that it is possible for God to send us nothing, or a situation seemingly worse than we had before.
So what is God’s Will for us in each and every situation? What are we praying for when we pray for “thy will be done and not my own?”
We are praying for the Last Judgment.
But before I get into what that is exactly, here is what ACIM has to say about prayer:
ACIM T.pg.163 Chapter 9 II. The Answer to Prayer
"Everyone who ever tried to use prayer to ask for something has experienced what appears to be failure. This is not only true in connection with specific things that might be harmful, but also in connection with requests that are strictly in line with this course. The latter in particular might be incorrectly interpreted as "proof" that the course does not mean what it says. You must remember, however, that the course states, and repeatedly, that its purpose is escape from fear." (1.1-4)
"The bible emphasizes that all prayer is answered, and this is indeed true. The very fact that the Holy Spirit has been asked for anything will ensure a response. Yet it is equally certain that no response given by Him will ever be one that would increase fear. It is possible that His answer will not be heard. It is impossible, however, that it will be lost. There are many answers you have already received but have not yet heard. I assure you that they are waiting for you." (3.1-7)
"If you would know your prayers are answered, never doubt a Son of God." (4.1)
"You can no more pray for yourself alone than you can find joy for yourself alone. Prayer is the restatement of inclusion, directed by the Holy Spirit under the laws of God." (6.1-2)
"You can ask of the Holy Spirit, then, only by giving to Him, and you can give to Him only where you recognize Him. If you recognize Him in everyone, consider how much you will be asking of Him, and how much you will receive. He will deny you nothing because you have denied Him nothing, and so you can share everything. This is the way, and the only way to have His answer, because His answer is all you can ask for and want. Say, then, to everyone:
Because I will to know myself, I see you as God's Son and my brother." (12.1-6)
So, according to the quote above, all prayers are answered. However, we will never be given an answer that will increase our fear. To increase our fear, is to deepen the reality of this world to us and ensure our greater difficulty in letting it go. This world is a dream, and dreams do not need fixing; they need waking. If this one thing- the illusion of the world of separation we now see- were corrected, all our other problems would disappear. Literally in a holy instant.
Our prayers then should actually be a statement: “I have no use for this illusion.” We have no real use for whatever it is we think we need, because none of it is real. Only what is eternal is real, and nothing outside of us is eternal. To pray for something outside of us, is to pray for more illusion. Our prayers should then simply become a request for release from suffering through letting go of the illusion, and all our pain along with it. Prayer should actually be a request to see things as God sees them – to see facts not illusion. Therefore, all power to correct the illusion and manifest Heaven lies within the power of our own mind; the power to “request” what we want through our thoughts.
This sounds suspiciously like the “Law of Attraction.” In fact, many have asked me how A Course In Miracles relates to the “Law of Attraction” because at times the two sound very similar.
The “Law of Attraction” is correct in that what we think about or feel is what we are “asking” for more of. However, it teaches us to focus on this world and all it has to offer. And so we feel we need things, or that we want to change situations we are in. All of which only attracts more lack and need through our focusing on it! Which is why the “Law of Attraction” fails almost everyone who tries to use it. They are “asking” or praying using the wrong questions. We do not want more of what is already a “lack” in our lives. We want abundance. We want joy. We want to know emotional freedom instead of being held hostage by pain, depression and anxieties.
We want total release from this world, and with it, all our problems.
The “Law of Love” from A Course In Miracles states: What you give is what you receive. It can be restated as, “what you ask for, you will get.” This sounds essentially the same as the “Law of Attraction.”
The big difference is, the “Law of Love” qualifies that the only need you have is to remember you ARE Love, and you don’t actually have any needs at all. Love is the only thing that can be given or received because it is the only the thing real in the is world; being eternal and not of this world at all.
Therefore, the “Law of Love” from ACIM asks only that we remember this: Ask only to remember the truth. The truth is, we do not actually need anything but our memory remember Who We Really are. We are One Love, united and free. We are not bound to bodies, we do not want the needs of the body. We want release from pain and suffering associated with the body. We want to know once again, reality as God created it, not this place of suffering we see now. We want to regain our memory of our Home in eternity. We would like to awaken!
Here comes the part where the Last Judgment ties into prayer.
We should therefore pray only for what is true- to be true for us.
What does this mean?
Well, if only what is eternal is real, and therefore true, then we must pray only to know the eternal within every single living thing. To want to see only the eternal within every living thing is to pray for Christ’s Vision. Christ’s Vision will show us that no one is ever in any real danger, no one is ever in any form of lack and no one can ever be lost, stolen or betrayed. Only the body can experience these things. And we are not bodies.
We are praying to see the world as God sees it. We are praying for His judgment to come to pass. His judgment is that the world is totally forgiven, we are all innocent, and we are equally loved as His Son. Nothing good and eternal about us has changed just because we are sleeping and dreaming we are in needful bodies. This is God’s Judgment upon us.
ACIM 10. What Is The Last Judgment?
“The final judgment on the world contains no condemnation. For it sees the world as totally forgiven, without sin and wholly purposeless. Without a cause, and now without a function in Christ’s sight, it merely slips away to nothingness. There it was born, and there it ends as well. And all the figures in the dream in which the world began go with it. Bodies now are useless, and will therefore fade away, because the Son of God is limitless.” (2.1-6)
“To fear God’s saving grace is but to fear complete release from suffering, return to peace, security and happiness, and union with your own Identity.” (3.2)
“This is God’s Final Judgment: “You are still My holy Son, forever innocent, forever loving and forever loved, as limitless as your Creator, and completely changeless and forever pure. Therefore awaken and return to Me. I am your Father and you are My Son.” (5.1-3)
This is God’s Will for us. This what should be our only prayer. The prayer in which all other prayers are answered. To pray for anything else, is to pray for far too little, and you will receive as you have asked. Pray for the Will of God to be done, and watch your life change in accordance to what you really want. You want the love and peace of God.
The result is miraculous. The myriad of beautiful ways that love manifests itself in your life is beyond the imagination of your ego. Your path will open up and life will flow forward using the power of the Holy Spirit within you.
This process works because it clears your mind of all you know you don’t want by replacing it with the deepest truth of Who You Are.
The “Law of Attraction” is missing this one important piece: the peace that makes it real. It is missing the peace and power of the Holy Spirit behind all transformation and healing.
So how do we lay aside all the things we think we want in this world? How do we simply decide we do not want this world at all? What would happen?
We would manifest a new one altogether. We would manifest Heaven through our relinquishment of all judgment upon this world. We have never exercised our power to do this because we did not know we had this power. Our prayers currently reflect belief in weakness, fear and pain, when the power of prayer is intended to bring us the strength to heal the world.
ACIM T.pg.461 Chapter 21 VII. The Last Unanswered Question
“Do you not see that all your misery comes from the strange belief that you are powerless? Being helpless is the cost of sin.” (1.1-2)
“No one believes the Son of God is powerless. And those who see themselves as helpless must believe that they are not the Son of God.” (2.1-2)
“The army of the powerless is weak indeed. It has no weapons and it has no enemy. Yes, it can overrun the world and seek and enemy. But it can never find what is not there. Yes, it can dream it found an enemy, but this will shift even as it attacks, so that it runs at once to find another and never comes to rest in victory.” (4.1-5)
“Who that believes in sin would dare believe he has no enemy? Could he admit that no one made him powerless? Reason would surely bid him seek no longer what is not there to find. Yet first he must be willing to perceive a world where it is not. It is not necessary that he understand how he can see it. Nor should he try. For if he focuses on what he cannot understand, he will but emphasize his helplessness, and not let sin tell him that his enemy must be himself. But let him only ask himself these questions, which he must decide, to have it done for him:
Do I desire a world I rule instead of one that rules me?
Do I desire a world in where I am powerful instead of helpless?
Do I desire a world in which I have no enemies and cannot sin?
And do I want to see what I have denied because it is the truth? (5.3-14)
“You may have already answered the first three questions, but not yet the last. For this one still seems fearful, and unlike the others. Yet reason would assure you they are all the same.” (6.1-3)
“Forget not that the choice of sin or truth, helplessness or power, is the choice of whether to attack or heal.” (7.1)
“And then it will be clear to you that, as you look on the effects of sin in any form, all you need do is simply ask yourself:
Is this what I would see? Do I want this?” (8.3-4)
“This is your one decision; this the condition for what occurs.” (9.1)
"No one decides against his happiness, but he may do so if he does not see he does it. And if he sees his happiness as ever changing, now this, now that, and now an elusive shadow attached to nothing, he does decide against it." (12.5-6)
"Joy cannot be perceived except through constant vision. And constant vision can be given only those who wish for constancy. The power of the Son of God's desire remains the proof that he is wrong who sees himself as helpless. Desire what you want, and you will look on it and think it real. No thought but this has the power to release or kill. And none can leave the thinker's mind, or leave him unaffected." (13.3-8)
And so it is that we must redirect our prayers to “ask” only for what we truly want. When we ask for the things of this world, be it a body to change, a situation to change or a material item to be attained, we ask for what is not eternal to be true for us. We ask for what can be lost, stolen or destroyed. We desire constant joy, but it cannot be found in what is never constant. All we are doing is binding ourselves ever closer to this world. And to break the chains it holds on us, we must change our thoughts about what it is we truly want.
ACIM T.pg.465 Chapter 21 VIII. The Inner Shift
“Are thoughts, then, dangerous? To bodies, yes! The thoughts that seem to kill are those that teach the thinker that he can be killed.” (1.1-3)
“Reason will tell you that you cannot ask for happiness inconstantly. For if what you desire you receive, and happiness is constant, then you need ask for it but once to have it always. And if you do not have it always, being what it is, you did not ask for it.” (3.1-3)
“You who complete God’s Will and are His happiness, whose will is powerful as His, a power that is not lost in your illusions, think carefully why you have not yet decided how you would answer the final question. Your answer to the others has made it possible to help you be already partly sane. And yet it is the final one that really asks if you are willing to be wholly sane.” (4.1-3)
“For you have asked that nothing stand between the holiness of your relationship and your awareness of its holiness.” (5.7)
What we truly want is to remember our holy relationship with God and one another. We want to pray that our awareness of unity be restored.
So does this mean that we should not pray for others or ask others to pray for us? And is it wrong to pray during times of stress and pain?
Absolutely not. There is nothing wrong with reaching out for help during times of distress. However, when it comes to praying for others, there is something we must understand.
Do not think of helping or being helped by prayer as meaning that another person has mediated between you and God. Rather, think of it as another person standing beside you and helping you to raise you up to Him. No human needs an intercessor between themselves and God. In our minds, we have enough barriers between God and ourselves already. But we do need each other’s help in the form of prayers to form a ladder closer to Him, each rung supporting the next.
And it is not our words that God hears, but the tenor of our thoughts. Yet, do not worry that if your heart holds negative thoughts, He will not respond with pain because you are “asking” for it. God knows we do not truly want increased suffering!
ACIM Manual For Teachers 29 pg. 70
“Never forget that the Holy Spirit does not depend on your words. He understands the requests of your heart, and answers them. Does this mean that, while attack remains attractive to you, He will respond with evil? Hardly! For God has given Him the power to translate your prayers of the heart into His language. He understands that an attack is a call for help. And He responds accordingly. God would be cruel if He let your words replace His Own. A loving Father does not let his child harm himself, or choose his own destruction. He may ask for injury, but his father will protect him still. And how much more than this does your Father love His Son?” (6.1-11)
And so it is, that when prayers seem to go unanswered, or we do not get the answer we want, it is simply because God is protecting us. What we have “asked” for is actually what will only draw us deeper into the illusion – the only “harm” that could ever come to us. The only release from suffering is release from this illusion of reality. And so, if we are to be free of it, some prayers must be answered in such a way as to always draw us out of it and into awakening from the dream.
In essence, we are always praying to awaken from this illusion of pain and fear. We are always praying to know God’s Will for us, which is that we awaken to His peace, unity and love. All prayer is ultimately leading to this whether we know it or not. In the answering of this one prayer, all prayers are answered. In this prayer, the Last Judgment is passed and all things transform into God’s True Reality He has created for us.
In conclusion, what exactly is The Last Judgment and how do we let this become our one and only prayer? This is best explained through lessons 311-320 from the Workbook of A Course In Miracles, which deals with this topic:
311. The Last Judgment is the final decision that we would like to see the world as God created it, not as we see it now.
312. We admit that we see the world incorrectly; we see separation through our judgments, and we seek to cease to see every living thing as separate from us.
313. We are now willing to let a new perception come to us; one that does not reflect our will alone, but rather, our will joined with God’s Will.
314. We are willing to do this, because we seek a future different from our past.
315. In order to allow our perception to be changed, we must accept that every brother we see or think of has a gift to offer us; the gift of our own release if we can see past their physical form. This gift belongs to us, and we claim it through forgiveness of all form.
316. As we give this gift of forgiveness, we are also receiving it from our brothers. The gift of forgiveness moves in two directions: our brothers give us forgiveness opportunities, and in turn, through our giving of forgiveness are we also forgiven and know we are united in truth. No form can separate what God has created as One.
317. This is the road to salvation from this world, and so we openly decide to follow it.
318. In us, salvation’s means and end are one. We must make the decision we want peace with everyone we see or think of, and by so doing, we acknowledge our unity.
319. This is what we came here to do. We came for salvation of the world.
320. The power to heal the world through forgiveness has been given to us by God. He has given us His power to manifest what we want in order that we may free ourselves and return Home.
Therefore, our prayer for the Last Judgment is the truth: We have not changed from what we were created as, just because we think we are in separate bodies. We are God’s one Son, united in His love and light. Let us see this in everyone we meet or think of; it is then that the world is freed at last, and Heaven will take its place in our holy vision. The Last Judgment is not the end of the world, but rather, the beginning of the new. This is our only prayer. Amen