“Nothing real can be threatened. Nothing unreal exists. Herein lies the peace of God.”A Course In Miracles
A Course in Miracles is a spiritual-psychological path to remembering our Oneness with God, allowing our true identity to be recognized. It is a non-dualistic teaching which states that Love is all there is and there is no opposite to Love: no sin, no guilt, no fear, no unworthiness. Only Love. Everything else is illusion. Ultimately it is a path to complete freedom, peace and joy, as we remember the truth of what we are.
As stated in the Preface to the Course, “Its only purpose is to provide a way in which some people will be able to find their own Internal Teacher.” It trains us to recognize, listen to and trust our Internal Teacher. The Course refers to this teacher as Holy Spirit, which it describes as the abstract memory of God, or Love, in our mind. We may call it Holy One, Higher Self, Essence; the name we give this abstract presence matters not.
As its name implies, the Course also speaks of miracles, giving the word a different meaning. The “miracles” of the Course have nothing to do with anything external in the world. Rather, a miracle is a shift in the way we look at things, or a shift in our perception. Miracles occur as we learn, through experience, that we feel more peaceful when we listen to the quiet voice of Holy Spirit, rather than the clamoring voice of our ego.
Truth, or Oneness, is not the goal of the Course though it is what the Course will lead us to.
“Your task is not to seek for love but merely to seek and find all of the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.
It is not necessary to seek for what is true, but it is necessary to seek for what is false.” T-16.IV.6:1-2
Because non-dualistic Oneness is not the way we experience our lives, because we experience ourselves as bodies that are separate from one another and separate from God, the Course does not ask us to deny this experience. The Course meets us where we are, in this world of illusion, and gently teaches us how to use our experiences here as a classroom, allowing Holy Spirit to reinterpret everything we think we know with such certainty.
The goal of the Course is undoing the illusion of separation in all its various forms. It emphasizes forgiveness as the means and teaches a profoundly different way of forgiving, which leads to healing and freedom.
“The journey to God is merely the reawakening of the knowledge of where you are always, and what you are forever.
It is a journey without distance to a goal that has never changed. Truth can only be experienced. It cannot be described and it cannot be explained.” T-8.VI.9:6-9
A Course in Miracles began with two Columbia University psychologists who were tired of the anger and divisiveness that permeated their experience and together they made a decision to find a better way. The Course was received as a process of inner dictation, which began, “This is a course in miracles, please take notes.” Scribing of the Course took about seven years beginning in 1965. No author’s name appears on the Course, though the author reveals himself as Jesus, (the Christ). The Course was first published in 1976 by the Foundation for Inner Peace and today, has been officially translated into twenty-five languages.
A Course in Miracles uses Christian terminology as symbols that are familiar in western culture, yet it evokes universal spiritual themes, including Eastern spirituality. The Course is not a religion; it is designed as a self-study spiritual thought system. It is organized as a teaching curriculum which consists of three books: the Text lays out the concepts which make up its thought system; the Workbook for Students, comprised of 365 daily lessons, emphasizes experience rather than belief in a theology; and a Manual for Teachers, which provides answers to questions commonly asked by students.
The Course clearly states that it is only one of many thousands of spiritual paths which all lead to God in the end.
To read the Preface to A Course in Miracles or learn more about the scribes, please visit The Foundation for Inner Peace: www.acim.org.