Illness Is Evidence of Unreality
“He [god of sickness] is the belief that you can choose which god is real. Although it is clear this has nothing to do with reality, it is equally clear that it has everything to do with reality as you perceive it.” (ACIM, T-10.III.11)
A Course in Miracles sees sickness as unreal, as an illusion, as evidence that we are not “in reality.” Most importantly, ACIM does not “blame the victim,” though. We are to have compassion for ourselves as well as others when we or they are under the weather. If we can just see this evidence of illusion as illusion, we will not be so likely to exacerbate pain into suffering.
Not all of us can avoid this exacerbation all the time. Doing so is the “ideal” reading of A Course in Miracles, and on the practical level, we see plenty of evidence that many of us do get sick, and on a regular basis. In addition, sainthood is no preserver of good health. We see no evidence in ACIM that those who are “closer” to God have an immunity from the ills of the human condition.
Knowing that even good people have illnesses can help us to see that we are in no position to blame the victim. We can’t see the whole picture; that is because of our finite minds. The Christ Self within each of us is not omniscient. The Christ Self is just following true reality as far as this Self can muster.
So, seeing illnesses as unreal, as lacking true reality, means that our real Self has not suffered. Nothing awry has gone wrong with the inner Self. We are still safe. But, as long as live on earth, we will be subject to its ills. And we need compassion to get us through the rough spots.
Don’t be tempted to blame the victim, because we “create our own reality,” as is said in New Age circles. This type of mentality avoids the hard issues of suffering that nobody has an answer for. The best we can do is simply to see this suffering as not touching the real Self. The illusory “little” self can get into all kinds of trouble, though. And when this happens (and it will happen, inevitably, to many of us) we need to ask for the patience to endure, and, most importantly, not to be tempted to turn our pains into suffering. To do so adds an emotional component to the pain that can be avoided, and ought to be, whenever we can muster the impetus to avoid this emotional component.