What is the Last Judgment?
Our special theme says, “The final judgment on the world contains no condemnation. For it sees the world as totally forgiven, without sin and wholly purposeless. Without a cause, and now without a function in Christ’s sight, it merely slips away to nothingness.”
Terms can be very confusing, so I will do my best to simplify the meaning that lies beyond any and all terms regarding awakening. Of course, to do this I will need to select and use some terms.
Ego – Ego is sometimes used to refer to the wrong mind. When “ego” refers to the wrong mind alone, it is completely transcended when the mind becomes purified and merged. However, “ego” can also be used as a more general term that means “sense of self.” When ego refers to a sense of self, even the ‘I am’ presence could be called ‘ego,’ although few people use that term in this way. The ‘I am’ presence is a divine sense of self rather than a personal sense of self. It is the sense of a subject, even if the only thing this subject is aware of is itself, (ie., consciousness aware of consciousness.)
Christ-consciousness – At the point where the sense of self is non-dual—that is, it is consciousness aware of consciousness—the sense of self remains, but it is seldom referred to as ego anymore. The divine sense of self is what A Course in Miracles calls “Christ.” Christ literally means “anointed one.” To be anointed is to be chosen by divine selection. It is fair to say that the sense of self as consciousness is by divine selection since it is created from source. It is the first sense of self. However, it is not awakening to the state that is prior to sense of self.
Nirvana or Manonasa – “Nirvana” means “blown out.” That means the sense of self is blown out like a candle is blown out. Manonasa means “mind annihilation,” which is the total annihilation of the sense of self. Both Nirvana and Manonasa are referred to as the final death of the ego. The Biblical term for this awakening is “the second death.” This awakening is beyond any sense of self, even a divine sense of self. It is also beyond perception entirely, since there is no longer a self to perceive. The mind, or sense of self, cannot imagine this awakening.
The last judgment is awakening from Christ-consciousness into Nirvana.
Here is another symbolic way of looking at this:
- Duality consciousness, commonly referred to as ego, is like a caterpillar. This state is prior to any awakening.
- The spiritual path is like the cocoon. The caterpillar enters the cocoon in order to transform, although it doesn’t know what it will transform into.
- When it emerges from the cocoon, it is a butterfly. This is like the divine sense of self. Whereas the caterpillar saw the world from the ground, the butterfly has a completely different point-of-view. Yet, there is still a self with a point-of-view.
- Nirvana is awakening beyond the butterfly and world perception entirely. Even the butterfly is seen to be a temporary phenomenon.
I see all things as I would have them be.
Today’s lesson begins with, “Perception follows judgment.”
As we saw yesterday, the ego’s purpose for judgment is to create the appearance of “me” and “not me.” Therefore, if we believe judgment, we perceive “me” and “not me.”
Let’s continue the practice that we used yesterday to surrender our judgments. By doing this, we surrender the mechanism of separation:
- Look when judgment occurs.
- Notice the perception of separation that is caused by judgment.
- Remember your desire to see without separation.
- Let go of your judgment simply because it conflicts with what you truly want.