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I have difficulty with the word "God". Is God a Person with a Personality, or something abstract?
Question: I guess my biggest problem with many modes of spirituality, religion, mysticism, metaphysics, etc. is the word "God." It's SO loaded. And it seems that ACIM is defining God as a Person that has a Son; yet God is a spirit. I want so desperately to believe until I get confronted with that huge three letter word. Can you help me understand the God concept from the ACIM standpoint?
Answer: God is Pure Spirit and has no "name"—God simply Is, far beyond words and beliefs and concepts. Belief in God is not even necessary, for God can only be Known as Spirit, Which is literally beyond belief. Forgiveness of illusion is the gateway to remembrance of God as Spirit. The sincere prayer of the heart is always Answered in illumination, and beyond the words offered is always the deep desire to Know Thy True Self. Ours is the willingness to forgive and be at peace, for lasting peace is our Inheritance as the Christ. God Answers the prayer of the heart.
Any question or doubt is always about identity, and it is helpful to be reminded that words were made to maintain the belief in separation: "Strictly speaking, words play no part at all in healing. The motivating factor is prayer, or asking. What you ask for you receive. But this refers to the prayer of the heart, not to the words you use in praying. Sometimes the words and the prayer are contradictory; sometimes they agree. It does not matter. God does not understand words, for they were made by separated minds to keep them in the illusion of separation. Words can be helpful, particularly for the beginner, in helping concentration and facilitating the exclusion, or at least the control, of extraneous thoughts. Let us not forget, however, that words are but symbols of symbols. They are thus twice removed from reality." (M-21.1)
My Answer is always Love, and the Holy Spirit uses words for a Purpose that heals and blesses the mind. Made to isolate and attack and separate, words have been redirected or retranslated to achieve miracles and harmony. Miracles unite you with your brother and render attack meaningless. Miracles show that nothing need ever be defended. Miracles bring peace instantly to the mind that is still an instant. Words can never come between you and your brother, for there is no gap in our Glorious Identity. Words and books and things and events only represent the purpose given them. Would you see the shining symbol of a forgiven world through the Perspective of the Holy Spirit or the fragmented, disunited misperceptions of the ego, for such is the choice you must make? You love your brother with a love so deep that you would weep in Joy at the very Thought, and would you now place a book and words before the very Love Which is God? Love makes no demands. Love does not possess. Love is whole and complete and needs nothing. Love recognizes ItSelf. As you experience your brother, you experience God. "When you meet anyone, remember it is a holy encounter. As you see him you will see yourself. As you treat him you will treat yourself. As you think of him you will think of yourself. Never forget this, for in him you will find yourself or lose yourself. Whenever two Sons of God meet, they are given another chance at salvation. Do not leave anyone without giving salvation to him and receiving it yourself. For I am always there with you, in remembrance of you." (T-8.III.4)
Our mind is united in forgiveness. Mind is indeed singular. Only the belief in a private mind, tiny and separated from the whole, could conceive of defense as meaningful. Being everything, you have no need. Being everything, you extend freely and without limit. The Love of Christ is meant to be given away freely, for such is the beatitude of life and the state of mind the Holy Spirit offers without cost. Yet true generosity is an attitude that accepts everything and asks for nothing. You have the right to perfect peace. Do not confuse our Inheritance with unreal thoughts about words and the use of words. "To have, give all to all" requires simply that you release the concept of expectation. Do you not see that asking a brother to act differently or wishing circumstances to be different than they are is the ego's illusory plan of salvation? It is as if you actually believed, "If he/she/they will change, I will be happy." This plan requires that anything EXCEPT your own mind must change for all to be well and good. Yet I have said that Atonement or complete forgiveness is the sole responsibility of the miracle worker, and this is changing your mind about your mind. Atonement is accepting our Changelessness as Eternal Mind and releasing the belief that there is anything "else."
From ACIM: "God has no name. And yet His Name becomes the final lesson that all things are one, and at this lesson does all learning end. All names are unified; all space is filled with truth's reflection. Every gap is closed, and separation healed. The Name of God is the inheritance He gave to those who chose the teaching of the world to take the place of Heaven. 6 In our practicing, our purpose is to let our minds accept what God has given as the answer to the pitiful inheritance you made as fitting tribute to the Son He loves. No one can fail who seeks the meaning of the Name of God. Experience must come to supplement the Word. But first you must accept the Name for all reality, and realize the many names you gave its aspects have distorted what you see, but have not interfered with truth at all. One Name we bring into our practicing. One Name we use to unify our sight." (W-184.13)
Together as Christ are we One with God in Spirit. Our Spirit is the Meaning Which surpasses all the little names that were made by the ego to take the place of the Truth of Oneness. You are the Meaning, Holy Child of God. In You is God Praised, for God creates You Perfect and Innocent forever and ever! I rejoice with You as One Self.