All temptation is nothing more than some form of the basic temptation not to believe the idea for today. Salvation seems to come from anywhere except from you. So, too, does the source of guilt. You see neither guilt nor salvation as in your own mind, and nowhere else. When you realize that all guilt is solely an invention of your mind, you must also realize that guilt and salvation must be in the same place. Understanding this you are saved.
The seeming “cost” of accepting today’s idea is this: It means that nothing outside yourself can save you; nothing outside yourself can give you peace. But it also means that nothing outside yourself can hurt you, or disturb your peace, or upset you in any way.
Today’s idea places you in charge of the universe, where you belong because of who you are. This is not a role which can be partially accepted. And you must surely begin to see that accepting it is salvation. It may not, however, be clear to you why the recognition that guilt is in your own mind entails the realization that salvation is there as well.
God would not have put the remedy for sickness where it cannot help. That is the way your mind has worked, but hardly His. He wants you to be healed, and so He has kept the Source of healing where the need for healing lies. You have tried to do just the opposite, making every attempt, however distorted and fantastic it might be, to separate healing from the sickness for which it was intended, and thus keep the sickness.
Your purpose was to ensure that healing did not occur; God’s purpose was to ensure that it did. Today we practice realizing that God’s Will and ours are really the same in this.
God wants us to be healed, and we do not really want to be sick because it makes us unhappy. Therefore, in accepting the idea for today, we are in agreement with God. He does not want us to be sick. Neither do we. He wants us to be healed. So do we.
We are ready for two longer practice periods today, each of which should last some ten to fifteen minutes. We will, however, still let you decide when to undertake them. We will follow this practice for a number of lessons, and it would again be well to decide in advance when would be a good time to lay aside for each of them, and adhere to your own decision as closely as possible.
Begin these practice periods by repeating the idea for today, adding a statement signifying your recognition that salvation comes from nothing outside of you. You might put it this way:
“My salvation comes from me. It cannot come from anywhere else.”
Then devote a few minutes with your eyes closed, to reviewing some of the external places where you have looked for salvation in the past, – in other people, in possessions, in various situations and events, and in self-concepts which you sought to make real.
Recognize that it was not there. Tell yourself:
“My salvation cannot come from any of these things. My salvation comes from me, and only from me.”
Now we will try again to reach the light in you, which is where your salvation is. You cannot find it in the clouds that surround the light, and it is in them you have been looking for it. It is not there. It is past the clouds, and in the light beyond. Remember that you will have to go through the clouds before you can reach the light. But remember also that you have never found anything in the cloud patterns you imagined that endured, or that you wanted.
Since all illusions of salvation have failed you, surely you do not want to remain in the clouds looking vainly for idols there, when you could so easily walk on into the light of real salvation. Try to pass the clouds by whatever means appeals to you. If it helps you, think of me holding your hand and leading you. And I assure you this will be no idle fantasy.
For the short and frequent practice periods today, remind yourself that your salvation comes from you, and nothing but your own thoughts can hamper your progress. You are free from all external interference. You are in charge of your salvation. You are in charge of the salvation of the world. Say, then:
“My salvation comes from me. Nothing outside of me can hold me back. Within me is the world’s salvation and my own.”