"This holy instant is salvation come."
(See Part II Practice Summary, and also Part II Introduction)
When the lesson says that today "is a time of special celebration" (1:2), I rather suspect it is using the word "special" in the same way it uses it in one place in the Text, where Jesus says, "All my brothers are special" (T-1.V.3:6). Today is special because, in the holy instant, salvation has already come. And yet, "You can claim the holy instant any time and anywhere you want it" (T-15.IV.4:4). Whenever you claim the holy instant, it is a special time! A day of joy!
This is just like telling a child that they can have Christmas every day if they want it. And indeed the Course tells us exactly that, in the section titled "The Time of Rebirth," written at Christmas. It tells us that Christmas is the time of Christ, and the time of Christ is the holy instant (T-15.X.2:1); and then it tells us, "It is in your power to make the time of Christ be now" (T-15.X.4:1).
And so, why not today? Why not every day? Why not now? Any time I want to, I can make it a time "when sorrows pass away and pain is gone" (1:4). The practice of the holy instant offers me this. Within my mind I can, at any instant, open a window onto the real world, and breath its fragrant atmosphere. I can experience a united world, drawn together by my forgiveness.
I do not yet find that I experience bliss the moment I close my eyes and say, "This holy instant is salvation come." The reality I have experienced, from time to time, is always here; I am certain of that. Yet my awareness of it remains spotty. (Very spotty!) But once you have tasted it, and in that instant known that what you are experiencing is eternal, you can never fully doubt its eternal presence. There are still many barriers blocking my awareness of it. I am still holding on to quite a few of those barriers. My grievances are still, most of the time, hiding the Light of the world from me. But it is there. My forgiveness can release it (1:7-2:1).
Every time I pause to remember, every time I attempt to claim the holy instant, another barrier falls, another drop of willingness is added to my reservoir. What better way could I possibly spend my time? As Lesson 127 said (see paragraphs 7 and 8), "There is no better use for time than this."
One aside: Notice that in 1:8, Jesus speaks of our forgiving him. Let me examine myself today, to see if there is something I still hold against him; something in him I mistrust; some way in which I still fear him, or blame him, or resent him. Even if I respect him as my teacher, it is very easy to feel resentful of one's teachers.
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