The point here is for us to recognise our strong resistance to reading A Course in Miracles as a mind, for that would mean the end of the ego’s thought system of separation and our individual identity as bodies. We see here another passage in which Jesus strongly emphasises that we are not the person we think we are. We need to approach the Course and its message of forgiveness from within its own non-dualistic perspective that teaches that the world and body are illusions, mere projections of the mind’s illusory thought system of separation and specialness. We are learning that given the Course’s non-dualistic metaphysical foundation, Jesus and the Holy Spirit cannot do things in the world, which the very words of A Course in Miracles itself tell us does not exist. To think otherwise courts confusion, for it reinforces the specialness it is the Course’s purpose to undo. Once again, the dream of specialness cannot be seen for what it is, let alone be undone, from the perspective of the dream itself.’
“…all mistakes must be corrected at the level on which they occur. Only the mind is capable of error. The body can act wrongly only when it is responding to misthought.” (T-2.IV.2:3-5).
Such confusion must inevitably lead to the misperception that because the problem is in the relationship between the special partners, rather than between the mind’s decision maker and the ego, the solution of forgiveness must then come between the bodies of these same two partners, instead of the decision maker’s changing his mind and choosing Jesus as his teacher. The end result of this is the reinforcement of our belief that the body is real and is our identity, instead of it serving as a means to help us reach the Course’s ideal of truly learning that we are not our bodies.
Identifying with their bodies, students misconstrue the very clear focus of A Course in Miracles as a self-study course, the essence of which is the relationship in the mind between themselves and Jesus. Thus they make the world of bodies their central focus in the form of special relationships with other Course students, and involvement in various kinds of Course organizations and “Course-related” activities such as teaching and helping others. They have forgotten Jesus’ unequivocal statement:
“Therefore, seek not to change the world, but choose to change your mind about the world.” (T-21.in.1:7).
Given these kinds of errors, it is not difficult to see how the Course’s language is a two-edged sword. On the one hand, its body-level language—the language of symbols—is necessary in order to speak to the body-level experience of its students:
“This course remains within the ego framework, where it is needed. It is not concerned with what is beyond all error because it is planned only to set the direction towards it. Therefore it uses words, which are symbolic, and cannot express what lies beyond symbols.” (C-in.3:1-3).
On the other hand, such language lends itself to the very level confusion of body and mind that is this article’s theme. Another clear caution that Jesus has provided for his students comes in his discussion of the third obstacle to peace:
“Remember, then, that neither sign nor symbol should be confused with source, for they must stand for something other than themselves. Their meaning cannot lie in them, but must be sought in what they represent.” (T-19.IV-C.11:2-3).
The source always lies within our minds—which teacher we have chosen—while the various signs and symbols of our world are merely the shadowy reflections of the choice we have made. And why bother with an illusory shadow when the problem and its answer lie elsewhere?
In conclusion, it is clear that our only hope for true salvation and awakening from the dream is to bring the illusions of our ego thought system to the truth of Jesus’ correction in our minds, as we see in this telling passage from the text:
“God’s answer lies where the belief in sin must be [in the mind], for only there can its effects be utterly undone and without cause. Perception’s laws must be reversed, because they are reversals of the laws of truth. The laws of truth forever will be true, and cannot be reversed; yet can be seen as upside down. And this must be corrected where the illusion of reversal lies [again, in the mind].” (T-26.VII.5).
If students of A Course in Miracles are truly desirous of helping others, then they need but remember that the best way to teach this Course is by example (T-5.IV.5:1; T-11.VI.7:3-4); otherwise they end up teaching and demonstrating the very level confusion they wish to undo in themselves and in the ones they wish to help. They would therefore do well to pay careful attention to the following teaching, which can serve as a red flag cautioning would-be teachers of God in their new profession:
“The sole responsibility of the miracle worker is to accept the Atonement for himself. This means you recognize that mind is the only creative level, and that its errors are healed by the Atonement. Once you accept this, your mind can only heal. By denying your mind any destructive potential and reinstating its purely constructive powers, you place yourself in a position to undo the level confusion of others. The message you then give to them is the truth that their minds are similarly constructive, and their miscreations cannot hurt them. By affirming this you release the mind from over evaluating its own learning device, and restore the mind to its true position as the learner.” (T-2.V.5).
Such level confusion is not accidental. It occurs as a direct response to students’ fear of what they are learning from Jesus in his Course. More specifically, again, it is the fear of losing the personal and special identity they have built up and cherished over many years, and it is this identity that must be undone at its source.
And so, the only one who needs to be taught A Course in Miracles is one’s self; the only one who needs peace is one’s self; the only one who needs healing is one’s self. The rest is up to Jesus, whose loving message, gentle healing, and all-embracing peace naturally extend through us once we have made room for him by accepting his gifts for our selves. How very simple indeed is salvation! And how relieving it is to be free at last of the burden of bringing peace to an illusory world that was made as an attack on God (W-pII.3.2:1), allowing the one whose love and mind alone are pure and clear to restore us all to sanity and truth!’