L e s s o n 131
No one can fail who asks to reach the truth.
1 Failure is all about you while you seek for goals that cannot be achieved. You look for permanence in the impermanent, for love where there is none, for safety in the midst of danger, immortality within the darkness of the dream of death. Who could succeed where contradiction is the setting of his searching and the place to which he comes to find stability?
2 Goals which are meaningless are not attained. There is no way to reach them, for the means by which you strive for them are meaningless as they are. Who can use such senseless means and hope through them to gain in anything? Where can they lead? And what could they achieve that offers any hope of being real?
3 Pursuit of the imagined leads to death because it is the search for nothingness, and while you seek for life you ask for death. You look for safety and security while in your heart you pray for danger and protection for the little dream you made.
4 Yet searching is inevitable here. For this you came, and you will surely do the thing you came for. But the world can not dictate the goal for which you search unless you give it power to do so. Otherwise, you still are free to choose a goal that lies beyond the world and every worldly thought and one which comes to you from an idea relinquished yet remembered, old yet newan echo of a heritage forgot, yet holding everything you really want.
5 Be glad that search you must. Be glad as well to learn you search for Heaven and must find the goal you really want. No one can fail to want this goal and reach it in the end. God's Son cannot seek vainly, though he try to force delay, deceive himself, and think that it is hell he seeks. When he is wrong, he finds correction; when he wanders off, he is led back to his appointed task.
6 No one remains in hell, for no one can abandon his Creator nor affect His perfect, timeless, and unchanging Love. You will find Heaven. Everything you seek but this will fall away, yet not because it has been taken from you. It will go because you do not want it. You will reach the goal you really want as certainly as God created you in sinlessness.
7 Why wait for Heaven? It is here today. Time is the great illusion it is past or in the future. Yet this cannot be if it is where God wills His Son to be. How could the Will of God be in the past or yet to happen? What He wills is now, without a past and wholly futureless. It is as far removed from time as is a tiny candle from a distant star, or what you chose from what you really want.
8 Heaven remains your one alternative to this strange world you made and all its waysits shifting patterns and uncertain goals, its painful pleasures, and its tragic joys. God made no contradictions. What denies its own existence and attacks itself is not of Him. He did not make two minds, with Heaven as the glad effect of one and earth the other's sorry outcome that is Heaven's opposite in every way.
9 God does not suffer conflict. Nor is His creation split in two. How could it be His Son could be in hell when God Himself established him in Heaven? Could he lose what the Eternal Will has given him to be his home forever? Let us not try longer to impose an alien will upon His single purpose. He is here because He wills to be, and what He wills is present now beyond the reach of time.
10 Today we will not choose a paradox in place of truth. How could the Son of God make time to take away the Will of God? He thus denies himself and contradicts what has no opposite. He thinks he made a hell opposing Heaven and believes that he abides in what does not exist, while Heaven is the place he cannot find. Leave foolish thoughts like these behind today, and turn your mind to true ideas instead.
11 No one can fail who asks to reach the truth, and it is truth we ask to reach today. We will devote ten minutes to this goal three times today, and we will ask to see the rising of the real world to replace the foolish images that we held dear, with true ideas arising in the place of thoughts which have no meaning, no effect, and neither source nor substance in the truth.
12 This we acknowledge as we start upon our practice periods. Begin with this:
14 For several minutes watch your mind and see, although your eyes are closed, the senseless world you think is real. Review the thoughts as well which are compatible with such a world and which you think are true. Then let them go, and sink below them to the holy place where they can enter not. There is a door beneath them in your mind which you could not completely lock to hide what lies beyond.
15 Seek for that door and find it. But before you try to open it, remind yourself no one can fail who asks to reach the truth, and it is this request you make today. Nothing but this has any meaning now; no other goal is valued now nor sought; nothing before this door you really want, and only what lies past it do you seek.
16 Put out your hand and see how easily the door swings open with your one intent to go beyond it. Angels light the way, so that all darkness vanishes and you are standing in a light so bright and clear that you can understand all things you see. A tiny moment of surprise, perhaps, will make you pause before you realize the world you see before you in the light reflects the truth you knew and did not quite forget in wandering away in dreams.
17 You cannot fail today. There walks with you the Spirit Heaven sent you that you might approach this door some day and through His aid slip effortlessly past it to the light. Today that day has come. Today God keeps His ancient promise to His holy Son, as does His Son remember his to Him. This is a day of gladness, for we come to the appointed time and place where you will find the goal of all your searching here and all the seeking of the world, which ends together as you pass beyond the door.
18 Remember often that today should be a time of special gladness, and refrain from dismal thoughts and meaningless laments. Salvation's time has come. Today is set by Heaven Itself to be a time of grace for you and for the world. If you forget this happy fact, remind yourself with this: