A Course in Miracles: What is the Body?

5.  What is the Body?

The body is a magnificent tool.  It can be used to keep us in our slumber, creating a hell-like experience where we are vulnerable to death, pain, and suffering.  Or it can be used as the ultimate commune-I-cation device, where we experience the cosmic conversation of our oneness and wholeness.  Thus, can the body be a tool to help us forget or to remember.  The choice is up to the beholder, you and me.

The body can perfectly play into the role of separation.  By our own skin, hair, eye color, shapes, and sizes, our dense eyes deceive us showing that we are indeed apart from one another.  In addition, it helps play out the physical separation, where I appear to be here writing these words and you appear to be sitting there, at a later time, reading these words.  Dun, dun, duuuun…presto!  Separation achieved!  Yet what awakens us to this dream is that sentient knowing that resides in each of us, that little twinge that is felt, heard, sensed within the body, letting us know that there is something more, a Truth beyond the truth that appears to be before us.

In an act of defense against what seems to be a world of suffering and harm, we created the body as a protection device.  Yet, how protective is such a fragile piece of skin and organs.  However, such a truth seems to make us protect ourselves even that much more.

“The body is a fence the Son of God imagines he has built, to separate parts of his Self from other parts” (ACIM Workbook Part II, 5. What is the Body? 1:1).

In our upcoming lessons we will correct the misaligned purpose we have given the body.  We shall shift from the idea of separate bodies and minds to the usefulness of the One body-mind.  The body in which you are in, is here to be used to explore your magnificence, not your smallness, although with free will, you are free to use it as such.  But why would you, when you can experience Heaven right in your own skin?

The body is miraculous.  It is a shift in perception within itself.  Genius!  It is the ultimate tool, teacher, and communication device.  It is how you decipher messages of God; it is how you experience God in human form; it is how you connect with your bothers and sisters in realizing your Oneness.  All of these things can only be part of the journey if we let go of our defenses and fears.  It is not about letting the “bad guys” in, it is about letting the Divine flow through you:  out, in, and all around.

“For only love creates in truth, and truth can never fear. Made to be fearful, must the body serve the purpose given it. But we can change the purpose that the body will obey by changing what we think it is for” (ACIM Workbook Part II, 5. What is the Body? 3:3-5).

As we focus on the body in the following lessons, notice the ways in which you protect yourself.  In what ways do you feel you must do something particular to keep yourself safe?  In what ways do you feel you must control a situation or an interaction so that you are not harmed?

“You will identify with what you think will make you safe” (ACIM Workbook Part II, 5. What is the Body? 5:1).

Also, as we journey forth, begin to pay attention to what is a sensible decision versus abiding in fear.  Our bodies are great tools to alert us when we do not need to be in a certain situation. It is the art of using fear and not letting fear use you.  Fear can alert us of when we need not do something, like cross the road when traffic is coming.  Being sensible is reading those cues and knowing what is best for you, like not crossing the road when the car is approaching.  Sensibility enables us to claim our knowing and divinity, where fear only keeps us from it.  Thus, get to know your body, its signs and signals.  Get to know how the Divine communicates with you in your vessel.  This is how you identify with love.

“Your safety lies in truth, and not in lies. Love is your safety. Fear does no exist. Identify with love, and you are safe. Identify with love, and you are home. Identify with love, and find your Self” (ACIM Workbook Part II, 5. What is the Body? 5:3-8).

In closing, Lesson 153 comes to mind, “In my defenselessness my safety lies,” where we explored how our true safety is in letting down our shields and embracing our vulnerability.  Our true safety is in letting go and realizing we are always safe in God’s arms.  In our defenselessness are we free, as is stated in Lesson 199, “I am not a body.  I am free.”  The body is your means to correct separation.  It is your means to truly SEE, knowing that what you are is something much greater, while still in need of a body in order to experience life as the living Christ.  Thus, it is all up to you.  Shall the body be used to remember, identifying with love, or to forget?  Namaste.


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