The road to enlightenment really boils down to a matter of recognition. There's more than 100 references to "recognition" in ACIM.
"Why wait for Heaven? Those who seek the light are merely covering their eyes. The light is in them now. Enlightenment is but a recognition, not a change at all."
Here Jesus is saying that we are ALREADY LIGHT, alreadty holy and whole. We just keep DENYING that it is already true of us, like someone who doesn't want to admit what's true. We are covering our eyes and trying NOT to see reality.
What does recognition mean? It means you accurately and correctly discern and acknowledge what something actually IS, without any distortion or denial or illusions or attempts to change it.
This obviously means being AWARE of what it is, and so yields awareness, or awakening. To be awake to what something IS is to recognize its reality. To not recognize reality is to be unaware of what is real, which places the mind in a state of sleep or unconsciousness, in which it dreams a world of lies.
The interesting thing is that, within you right now, there is a holy, perfect, happy, peaceful, divine, innocent self. It's ALREADY THERE. And it is already true. God has in fact already established the fact of what you ACTUALLY ARE.
The only problem we have, is that our minds are currently in a state where we don't clearly acknowledge this about ourselves, we don't recognize it is in us already, and we don't seem to want it. We have REJECTED OURSELVES, and don't want to be who we are.
"Here the deathless come to die; the all-encompassing to suffer loss; the timeless to be made the slaves of time. Here does the changeless change; the peace of God, forever given to all living things, give way to chaos. And the Son of God, as perfect, sinless, and as loving as his Father, come to hate a little while; to suffer pain, and finally to die."
Part of the problem of not wanting it is simply because we don't recognize it. When you DON'T recognize something, you think it is something else. And now you've entered into illusions and confusion and insanity. It means you are out of touch with reality.
Accepting reality means coming into "contact" with it, rather than being separated off from it or distanced from it. Being in contact with reality is sanity and recognition of what is already true. Such a state of mind is mirarcle mindedness.
"Miracles are examples of right thinking. Reality contact at all levels becomes strong and accurate, thus permitting correct delineation of intra- and interpersonal boundaries. As a result, the doer sees the truth as God created it."
Atonement is the same. We are asked to accept the atonement. The atonement is an expression of the truth. We are simply asked to accept what is true, in terms of the truth as God established it. To accept what God has GIVEN you. Which is also to reclaim your inheritance.
"Innocence is not of your making. It is GIVEN you, the instant you would HAVE it."
"The remedy is NOT of your making, any more than YOU are." "God Himself gave you the perfect correction for everything you have made which is not in accord with His Holy Will."
We aren't even really asked to do anything special or elaborate. We're basically just asked to "know thyself". To be true to what we actually are. To recognize its truth, to acknowledge it as true, and to accept it.
This means that while we're NOT doing that, we must be in some kind of strange mental state where we're AVOIDING the truth, we want something ELSE to be true, and we've put our faith in things which are false. We've given reality TO illusions and lies, instead of letting reality be reality.
It surely can't be hard to simply turn within and acknowledge actual facts. A truth which can be experienced. To let go of all desires to have the truth be something it is not, and to merely accept what is true. To let yourself be as God created you. To stop trying to turn yourself and others into something they're not.
Enlightenment then isn't even really an activity, it's more like just a total surrendering and allowing what ACTUALLY IS to be what it is. Which also means allowing God to be God, and you to be you, and your brother to be your brother.
It's like, just giving up and stopping all the ego games of wanting things to be different to how they are in reality, and being willing to ADMIT that only the truth is true. To lay down all the defense and denials and ways that we try to INSIST that something else is true and real.
It was our insisting on not being okay with heaven, that produced this false world. It was our denial of God that produced our egotism and suffering. It was our wanting to be something we could never be, that placed us in bodies and space and time. And it was our attempt to oppose life that induced our own seeming death.
"You ATTACK the real world every day and every hour and every minute, and yet you are surprised that you cannot SEE it." The road home couldn't really be more simple. We just give up fighting against reality and become fully willing to accept and receive an "off the shelf" solution from God, take His truth to be our own, align with His will for us, and just return to living in your NATURAL state.
"To be without a body is to be in our natural state. To recognize the light of truth in us is to recognize ourselves as we are."
"By DEMONSTRATING to yourselves that THERE IS NO ORDER OF DIFFICULTY IN MIRACLES, you will convince yourselves that in your NATURAL state there IS no difficulty, because it is a state of Grace."
"Grace is the natural state of every Son of God. When he is NOT in a state of grace he IS out of his natural environment, and does NOT function well. Everything he does becomes a strain, because he was not created for the environment which he has made. He therefore CANNOT adapt to it, nor can he adapt IT to HIM. There is no point in trying. A Son of God is happy ONLY when he knows he is WITH God. That is the only environment in which he will not experience strain, because that is where he belongs. It is also the only environment that is worthy of him, because his own worth is beyond ANYTHING that he can make."
"Health is the natural state of anything whose interpretation is left to the Holy Spirit, who perceives no attack on anything."