I will be still an instant and go home.
This lesson of A Course in Miracles conveys the idea that the world we seem to live in is not our true home. We are alien here. Yet in the recess of our mind, we know this. The memory of our true home haunts us, as if we were being called to return to a childhood home.
Critically, return is possible.
The challenge is, we do not recognize the voice nor what it reminds us of. That is why the lesson uses the word “haunt.” We are confused and our confusion scares us. This feeling of exile comes and goes – becomes faint or strong – but it never actually leaves us. It’s like a permanent feature of the interior landscape. We miss our home in the same way we miss our identity.
Indeed, it is almost the same problem.
Stillness is the means by which we remember both our identity and the way home. It cannot be accomplished by anything in the physical world or in our bodily experiences in that world. The experience of Heaven transcends all that. It is in essence – because of its fundamental innocence – a childlike experience.
. . . there is a Child in you Who seeks His Father’s house, and knows that he is alien here. This childhood is eternal, with an innocence that will endure forever. Where this Child shall go is holy ground (W-pI.182.4:3-5).
The holiness of this Child – who is not separate from us – literally lights up Heaven,” which in turn reminds us that there can be “no substitute for Heaven” (W-pI.182.3:6). In other words, our ultimate peace and happiness can only be found in relationship with God, and with all our brothers and sisters who, collectively, share Creation with us.
In this way, we go beyond the superficial and temporary pleasures of the world in order to cultivate the interior stillness in which we might care for this inner Child, who is both home in us (W-pI.182.5:5) and in Heaven (WpI.182.5:7). He is our vital link both to remembering what we are in truth and what our actual home is.
The Child is a symbol of the innocence and purity that we all share because we share in God’s Creation. It is a truth in us that remains untouched by the illusions of the world propogated by ego. As those barriers are undone, we remember with increasingly clarity that “Christ is reborn as but a little child each time a wanderer would leave his home” (W-pI.182.10:1).
We are all aliens here, until we remember that we cannot actually be separate from Creation, or Heaven. What is true can be ignored or denied but it cannot be undone. Truth is true. This is the essence of Christ Consciousness – the notion that a universal principle of divine love and wisdom permeates the cosmos, transcending our limited ideas of time and space, identity and home.
Today’s lesson urges us to adopt a nonviolent stance in our practice. Rather than go to war with ego in a futile effort to defeat what is not real, we simply lay down the spear and the sword we raised against an enemy with no existence (W-pI.182.11:1) and rest in Christ, whose cry for help is our own cry, which only we can answer.
Christ has called you friend and brother. He has even come to ask your help in letting Him go home today, completed and completely. He comes as does a little child . . . (W-pI.182.11:2-4).
In stillness today, we recollect our innocence, and we care for it as we would a child, trusting that our efforts will reveal both the way and the journey’s end (e.g., W-pI.182.12:8). In stillness, we are home.