From Zero to Infinity in an Instant
We worship an idol (though we know it not) because we want to have more of something. And in order for one person to have more of something, another must have less by comparison. If the universe is finite, and if physical things represent ultimate reality, then physical goods cannot be shared. Rather, we must compete for them.
This is similar to the “zero-sum game” in economics theory. According to Investopedia, the zero-sum game is “a situation in which one participant’s gains result only from another participant’s equivalent losses. The net change in total wealth among participants is zero; the wealth is just shifted from one to another.”
Of course, this ignores the fact that physical things can be made and destroyed. However, we know from experience that life in this world is usually a struggle to obtain physical things, and the world thinks that if one person has many physical things, this prevents others from having them. This type of thinking is a large part of what A Course in Miracles wants to reverse. In fact, even buying and selling are nonsensical to the spirit:
The idea of buying and selling implies precisely the kind of exchange that the Soul cannot understand at all because its supply is always abundant and all its demands are fully met. –A Course in Miracles: Original Edition
According to A Course in Miracles, we can only make one mistake:
For there is but one mistake; the whole idea that loss is possible, and could result in gain for anyone. If this were true, then God would be unfair; sin would be possible, attack be justified and vengeance fair. –A Course in Miracles
God does not will that part of His creation have more than another part. He gives everything to everyone. However, as long as we see ourselves as limited physical beings, we won’t know ourselves as the unlimited love that we are.
The Son of God [God’s creation] is limitless. There are no limits on his strength, his peace, his joy, nor any attributes his Father gave in his creation. –A Course in Miracles
The “holy instant,” in which the past and future have no hold on us, is God’s solution to our dreams of limitation and lack, and our desire for vengeance for not getting what we think we deserve.
The holy instant is the opposite of the ego’s fixed belief in salvation through vengeance for the past. In the holy instant it is understood that the past is gone, and with its passing the drive for vengeance has been uprooted and has disappeared. The stillness and the peace of now enfold you in perfect gentleness. Everything is gone except the truth. –A Course in Miracles
For in the holy instant, free of the past, you see that love is in you, and you have no need to look without and snatch love guiltily from where you thought it was. –A Course in Miracles
How long will it take the holy instant to save the world?
If you are tempted to be dispirited by thinking how long it would take to change your mind so completely, ask yourself, “How long is an instant?” Could you not give so short a time to the Holy Spirit for your salvation? He asks no more, for He has no need of more. It takes far longer to teach you to be willing to give Him this than for Him to use this tiny instant to offer you the whole of Heaven. In exchange for this instant He stands ready to give you the remembrance of eternity. –A Course in Miracles
The holy instant works when one teacher of God does not agree to see his brother’s mind as separate from his own.
No mind is sick until another mind agrees that they are separate. And thus it is their joint decision to be sick. If you withhold agreement and accept the part you play in making sickness real, the other mind cannot project its guilt without your aid in letting it perceive itself as separate and apart from you. Thus is the body not perceived as sick by both your minds from separate points of view. Uniting with a brother’s mind prevents the cause of sickness and perceived effects. Healing is the effect of minds that join, as sickness comes from minds that separate. –A Course in Miracles
What occurred within the instant that love entered in without attack will stay with you forever. Your healing will be one of its effects, as will your brother’s. –A Course in Miracles
Once we see ourselves as one united spirit, and the holy instant brings this truth to our awareness, we will no longer see ourselves as small, weak, and vulnerable.
The Oneness of the Creator and the creation is your wholeness, your sanity and your limitless power. This limitless power is God’s gift to you, because it is what you are. If you dissociate your mind from it you are perceiving the most powerful force in the universe as if it were weak, because you do not believe you are part of it. –A Course in Miracles
In conclusion, the world believes in scarcity, lack, and, loss. If these things are true, then life is inherently unfair and we are justified in being angry, defending the little that we think we have, and attacking those who try to take the little that we think we have. A Course in Miracles teaches that a thought reversal is needed so that we will recognize what we are–unlimited love. The means to accomplish this thought reversal is through the practicing of forgiveness and non-judgment. In this way, the past and future can be relinquished and the holy instant accepted. At the moment the holy instant is accepted, we will recognize that we are one with God and His creation, and the light of this knowledge will extend into infinity.
Beyond the body, beyond the sun and stars, past everything you see and yet somehow familiar, is an arc of golden light that stretches as you look into a great and shining circle. And all the circle fills with light before your eyes. The edges of the circle disappear, and what is in it is no longer contained at all. The light expands and covers everything, extending to infinity forever shining and with no break or limit anywhere. Within it everything is joined in perfect continuity. Nor is it possible to imagine that anything could be outside, for there is nowhere that this light is not. –A Course in Miracles