(169) By grace I live. By grace I am released.
(170) There is no cruelty in God and none in me.
Paragraph 12 of the review introduction:
Yesterday we thought again about the means of practice that we are being taught, the frequent repetition of the thoughts for the day. Today's paragraph reminds us that the words are only aids. Their purpose is simply to "recall the mind, as needed, to its purpose" (12:1). The purpose is in the experience, the communion with God experienced during the holy instants we spend. "We place faith in the experience that comes from practice, not the means we use" (12:2).
What is the mind's purpose to which we are being recalled? It is remembering Who we are, and sharing that with the world, reminding others of their true Self, shared with us. The repetition of words only brings us back to this memory of a Self that is in constant union with Its Father and Itself, His natural extension. The goal of our practice is to experience that state of right-mindedness, even if only for a brief moment. We are remembering that what we are is only Love, because that is all that God is. If that is so, there can be no cruelty in God, nor any cruelty in us.
The experience of the Self is what brings conviction (12:3). The words "God is but Love, and therefore so am I" or "By grace I live" cannot bring conviction or certainty. The experience of it not only can bring conviction, it does bring conviction. The goal of practice is to go beyond the words to the experience, to their meaning, "which is far beyond their sound" (12:4).
How does that happen? I can't tell you; no one can. But I can tell you that it does happen. It won't happen without practice. Practice does not make it happen, but it prepares the mind. It opens the door. It washes the mind clean with crystal pure thoughts, and readies it for the experience that is always there, always waiting. And in that experience, we find our rest.