Photo by Rikki Vieira

Photo by Rikki Vieira

An Excerpt from The End of Death

Copyright 2013 Nouk Sanchez

Note: Included in this excerpt is a revealing and helpful exercise

Did you know the first obstacle to peace that we all have, is the desire to get rid of it? How crazy is that? We spend our entire lives searching for peace but through the ego, we unknowingly reject it. In my own experience, I have noticed that the unconscious rejection of peace is inextricably tied in to two other unconscious desires that are equally as insidious. This is the belief in sin and its inevitable consequences; and the attraction to guilt, along with the ego’s inescapable desire for punishment. These constitute the ego’s secret and consistent wish for us to be unfairly treated.

A sin is permanent, immovable, and fixed. The idea that sin is real is the basis for this ego world. But what we don’t often recognize is that the only way we could possibly witness sin in our world, is via our own projection. Recall that the body and world are in our mind. So if I’m triggered by a so called sin out there, it’s not really out there. It must be within my own mind, and I will see how much of my guilt remains to be healed by observing the degree that it triggers me emotionally. 

“There is no stone in all the ego’s embattled citadel that is more heavily defended than the idea that sin is real; the natural expression of what the Son of God has made himself to be, and what he is.” T-19.II.7:1

In the ego world we do believe in sin rather than simply errors or mistakes. A sin is irreversible and demands punishment. Yet a mistake is different. It calls for correction. Deeply ingrained in our unconscious dwells the fear of God’s Love, and this fear demands the ego’s vigilant maintenance and defense. Our belief in sin is just the defense required to block out awareness of the Love of God within us. The ego’s  very existence depends on the belief that both sin and attack are real. And this is the ego’s purpose for the body. To judge what appears to be out there, such as the body, the past, others and the world, and to report back exactly what the ego sends our senses to find. Sin is hunted down and hungrily devoured by the ego as its greatest defense against the memory of  Love that dwells within as our Holy Self.

The ego needs you to see sin and attack in the past, in your body, in others and in the world, for it to maintain your terror of God’s Love, as your Holy Self. While you believe you see sin, you will uphold your unconscious belief that you are guilty, that you can be attacked because you seemingly committed the most epic and unforgivable sin of all at the separation; in your betrayal of God. Your belief in sin fuels your hidden belief that God will annihilate you if He ever finds you. Deep, deep in your unconscious lies this terror of annihilation by Love. While you still believe in sin and attack you will continue to turn to the ego as your inner teacher.

“Sin is the only thing in all the world that cannot change. It is immutable. And on its changelessness the world depends… Yet each one knows the cost of sin is death. And so it is. For sin is a request for death, a wish to make this world’s foundation sure as love, dependable as Heaven, and as strong as God Himself.” T-25.VII.1:1-4, 6-8

What we give, we do indeed receive. In my believing sin and attack anywhere, I am projecting my own guilt which is self-attack. Perhaps I think I’m judging someone or something other than myself but…there is no one and nothing other than myself. If I judge it, then it remains mine to keep. And the outcome of keeping guilt is death. That is why forgiveness is the most miraculous form of healing because it targets the only source of every single problem we seem to face. It undoes the singular cause of all suffering which is the unconscious belief that we are guilty and subsequently, that we deserve punishment. Physical death is always self-administered regardless of appearances. Death is an ego attempt to escape a much more severe, albeit imagined punishment by God…Who is all-encompassing Love with no opposite.

 If you believe in sin, that sins require punishment, rather than seeing them simply as mistakes to be corrected, then you will make sin real in your mind. And the punishment you deem justified for the sin committed, will be one that the ego secretly gathers for yourself.

“Sin is attacked by punishment, and so preserved. But to forgive it is to change its state from error into truth.” T-25.III.8:12-13

There is no sin. There can’t be. Because all seeming sins we appear to witness arise from only one place, and that is lack of Love. Which means that a so called sin is simply a mistake, or what Jesus calls “a call for Love.” The ego punishes all calls for Love because it declares them sins and not as mistakes issued from lack of Love.  Yet no one has ever committed a sin. All seeming sins are caused by lack of Love. If we had no guilt or fear, we could never make a mistake. Only lack of Love causes mistakes. Remember that there is no hierarchy of illusions, so how can sin be real? Is there a greater illusory sin (mistake) than any other illusory mistake, if they’re all illusions? Interpret just one mistake as a sin and you have effectively made an opposite to God real. Either sin is real and there is no God, which means that you don’t exist. Or God and you are both real, and sin does not exist. There is no compromise in this.

“The Son of God can be mistaken; he can deceive himself; he can even turn the power of his mind against himself. But he [cannot] sin.”T-19.II.3:1-2

 

Exposing Unconscious Guilt Exercise

 

Let’s look at how this belief in sin affects our daily lives then. If my belief in sin always calls for punishment and because there is really only me, then it’s always myself that ends up being punished. Recall that all attack is always self-attack regardless of appearances. Sin is a call for punishment. So what forms of punishment do you use to unconsciously attack yourself? Who and what does the ego use in your body and life, in its attempt to prove that you have sinned? Included here is everyone and everything you still believe has sinned. Self judgment is a favorite sin of the ego as well. The symptoms of your belief in sin could be anxiety, confusion, unworthiness, weight gain, sickness, physical or emotional pain, scarcity, depression, conflict, or death, etc. Choose some symptoms that cause you suffering.  You may want to list these as part of the next release exercise.

If one of my un-relinquished beliefs is that over-eating is a sin, then I will believe that I should be punished for it. And I will unknowingly punish myself by gaining weight. Maybe I use self-criticism as a sin. So the ego will punish me with experiences that confirm my seeming unworthiness. Or say I believe that someone hurt me, thereby making it a sin. While I demand retribution for the sin I think was committed, the ego will punish me for it, perhaps through physical pain or sickness. Whatever the symptoms may be, the cause is my unforgiven belief in sin. Sin begets guilt and guilt demands punishment.

We would heal so quickly if we could simply acknowledge that none of these mistakes are sins. They’re simply mistakes made from lack of Love. And so I ask you, “What would Love do?” How would Love respond to these mistakes? What would the Voice for Love tell you? A mistake can be Lovingly corrected and forgiven. But a sin deserves cruel punishment and must remain forever unforgiven.

It is exceedingly important to look at all the areas and people that we have unknowingly used to attack ourselves, the “sins” we have deemed real. These are the people and events we believe we were victimized by. We cannot heal until we do this. It is futile look to the body, the past, others or the world as scapegoats for the real and only cause of all suffering, which is always in our mind. Real healing is found in the gentle majesty of the Atonement. This powerful forgiveness process is here for us in any instant that we genuinely desire to heal our perception. (Note: For the full forgiveness/Atonement process, click here)

In searching my mind for scapegoats for sin, I might find that I am my own worst critic; that I suffer from an endless barrage of destructive self-judgments. To the ego, these judgments against myself are indeed sins. And these sins will also demand punishment if they are not sincerely offered to Spirit in exchange for the miracle. In my own experience, the consequences of cruel self-judgment have been pain, sickness, weariness and sleeplessness. The punishment exacted for the belief in the sin of scarcity, is usually more scarcity and so on. This is how the ego keeps us entrenched in sin, guilt and fear, a vicious cycle until we willingly offer these self-inflicted mistakes over to Spirit.

1) Review people in history who have supposedly sinned. Include people you see in the news, especially those who trigger you. Write them down.

2) Whom in your own history has sinned in your eyes? It may be a person. Or it could well be your body, an institution, yourself or God. In other words who or what have you not forgiven completely? Write down each one that comes to mind.

Those people and phenomena that you have not forgiven completely, stand to symbolize the unconscious guilt (self-hatred and self-attack) that you would prefer to defend and keep. These are not simply error’s in need of correction, but the ego’s sins. And sin calls for punishment, but remember these are not “out there” but within your own mind. Quite literally, while they remain un-forgiven, these sins retained in your own mind, will demand and manifest self-punishment. This is the unconscious ego belief that you are guilty, therefore it is you who deserves punishment. 

“Any attempt to reinterpret sin as error is always indefensible to the ego. The idea of sin is wholly sacrosanct to its thought system, and quite unapproachable except with reverence and awe. It is the most “holy” concept in the ego’s system; lovely and powerful, wholly true, and necessarily protected with every defense at its disposal. For here lies its “best” defense, which all the others serve. Here is its armor, its protection, and the fundamental purpose of the special relationship in its interpretation…” “It can indeed be said the ego made its world on sin. Only in such a world could everything be upside down.” T-19.11.5,6:1-2

Look at your lists, including the earlier one of, “What does the ego use in your body and life, in its attempt to prove that you have sinned?” Are you ready to genuinely release each of these people or issues to the forgiveness process? Be radically honest with yourself. If there is reluctance to forgive wholeheartedly, then set aside those that you’d prefer not to forgive just yet. Stay centered and be the observer of “why” you feel resistance to releasing these. What is it that you want from retaining your judgment against them? Be as specific as you can. What gain is there for you, in holding these grievances? And in their release, what do you fear to lose?

Now, if you could imagine that these victimizers in whatever form they appeared, actually do not exist. All there is, is you and these grievances as hatred, separation and punishment. As you look upon the grievances, ask yourself if you want this request for punishment aimed directly at yourself.

I have had ample forgiveness opportunities in my life and I’m relieved to say that everyone in my life is forgiven. However the body is showing up as my forgiveness area now, as it’s the last of our special relationships to heal completely. And I can see how I have used it as a repository for sins that are really only error’s. Any little pain tells me immediately that I have used the body to inflict the punishment that my sins demand. In my case, the un-forgiveness is invariably a self-judgment, one that is exacted upon the body to try to prove that I have sinned and as a result, that I am unworthy of unconditional acceptance. But while I carry any grievances at all, then the body will be used for self-attack in order to demonstrate to myself and the world that we are guilty and therefore deserving of punishment. The power of the Atonement eradicates the concept of sin and guilt by rendering the seeming sin as purely a mistake, and one that is always worthy of forgiveness and healing.

“Yet punishment is but another form of guilt’s protection, for what is deserving punishment must have been really done. Punishment is always the great preserver of sin, treating it with respect and honoring its enormity. What must be punished, must be true. And what is true must be eternal, and will be repeated endlessly. For what you think is real you want, and will not let it go…” “An error, on the other hand, is not attractive. What you see clearly as a mistake you want corrected. Sometimes a sin can be repeated over and over, with obviously distressing results, but without the loss of its appeal. And suddenly, you change its status from a sin to a mistake. Now you will not repeat it; you will merely stop and let it go, unless the guilt remains.” T-19.III.2,3:1-5

No wonder the first obstacle to peace is our desire to get rid of it! While the attraction of sin and guilt remain, we can never know consistent peace. The very nature of sin and guilt spawns a persistent sense of threat. And the cycle continues.

False Humility and Guiltlessness

Jesus tells us exactly what our function is here in the world…to be no less than the light of the world!

“…your function here is to be the light of the world, a function given you by God. It is only the arrogance of the ego that leads you to question this, and only the fear of the ego that induces you to regard yourself as unworthy of the task assigned to you by God Himself. The world’s salvation awaits your forgiveness, because through it does the Son of God escape from all illusions, and thus from all temptation. The Son of God is you.” W-64.3.

Guiltlessness is greatly feared because the ego’s seeming identity and power depends on keeping sin and guilt real. However if we release the concept of sin through forgiveness, then both guilt and fear must fall away. Guilt and fear represent the palpable “gap” we feel that separates us from the deep and incorruptible security of knowing deeply within, that we are Love with no opposite. To the ego, guiltlessness is the ultimate in blasphemy; a sin worthy of death. Jesus came to reverse the laws of this world and to teach us that through the Christ within, we are the light of the world.

No wonder Jesus’ body was killed because he not only taught guiltlessness, but he demonstrated the invulnerability that only innocence could. He witnessed to the world that only God’s Love and Laws were real, and that the ego’s laws were powerless over Truth. In the ego world we value false humility. If we are guiltless, the ego sees this as arrogance. How dare we claim to be the Self that God created! To declare that we are in fact, the light of the world, is to commit the ultimate in ego’s idea of sin. The ego believes that in order to maintain our holiness, we must remind ourselves that we are sinners indeed. That is the ego’s concept of holiness, one that is directly opposed to Jesus’ teaching that proclaims “you are the light of the world.”

“A major tenet in the ego’s insane religion is that sin is not error but truth, and it is innocence that would deceive. Purity is seen as arrogance, and the acceptance of the self as sinful is perceived as holiness. And it is this doctrine that replaces the reality of the Son of God as his Father created him, and willed that he be forever. Is this humility? Or is it, rather, an attempt to wrest creation away from truth, and keep it separate?” T-19.II.4.

“I am the light of the world.” “To the ego, today’s idea is the epitome of self-glorification. But the ego does not understand humility, mistaking it for self-debasement. Humility consists of accepting your role in salvation and in taking no other. It is not humility to insist you cannot be the light of the world if that is the function God assigned to you. It is only arrogance that would assert this function cannot be for you, and arrogance is always of the ego.” W-61.2.

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