1 – Christ
“The term mind is used to represent the activating agent of spirit, supplying its creative energy. . . .Spirit is the Thought of God which He created like Himself. The unified spirit is God’s one Son, or Christ. (C79)
2 – Term “Soul”
Jesus does not use the term “soul” very often at all in A Course in Miracles; he does use “spirit,” and this term refers to the animating Self, of which all of us are One. We all are Christ in our highest Self, but this takes some understanding, for we do not all manifest Christ in our daily lives. We often make grievous mistakes, and this propensity to take the wrong step does land us into trouble, even when help in the form of the Holy Spirit is so near to us. We cannot know our highest Self until we have walked far enough on the pathway home that we know that we HAVE a higher Self. We don’t know that in the beginning, and we lose the way—though help will rescue us.
3 – Spirit
“Spirit is the part that is still in contact with God through the Holy Spirit, Who abides in this part but sees the other part as well. . . .The other part of the mind is entirely illusory and makes only illusions. (C79)
4 – Baptism of the Holy Spirit
Spirit is our focus when we have received the baptism of the Holy Spirit, a blessing that comes to all who ask. The illusory part of the mind is the persona that we have made with the help of the ego, the egoic mind. And this persona never wishes its maker well. We see that the ego is constantly being undone; this is necessary, by God, to ensure that our deviation from the pathway is not so severe that we can’t find our way back. So with the ego constantly being undercut, what do we have left but to choose another way, and for us the other way is A Course in Miracles.
5 – Ego
If the ego is making only illusions, we are going to be lost in illusion, and nothing that is made in that state of mind means anything. We walk a way that will not work, however long and hard we try to make it work. We are like prisoners who become accustomed to their chains (Jesus uses this metaphor in A Course in Miracles), and when the light is finally seen and we are freed, we don’t know what to make of freedom in the beginning. We are dazed by the light. But help is always near, and we will soon find that our new way is much preferred to our old.
6 – Right-Mindedness
“Right-mindedness listens to the Holy Spirit, forgives the world, and through Christ’s vision sees the real world in its place. . . .Wrong-mindedness listens to the ego and makes illusions; perceiving sin and justifying anger, and seeing guilt, disease and death as real. (C79)”
7 – Contrast
Right-mindedness and wrong-mindedness are opposites, and only the former will get us where we want to go. Only the former is blessed by God. And only the former will ease our way in this troubled and difficult world.
8 – Wrong-Mindedness
Wrong-mindedness is the state of mind in which mistakes predominate, mistakes predominating because of the ascendancy of the ego. We don’t really want to adopt a persona that is unworthy of ourselves, but we do it, even when we have invited the Holy Spirit to guide us. We fall down, we make mistakes, we don’t see our way clear to walk the charmed pathway.
9 – Light
These mistakes can all be undone by welcoming in Light. This Light is the Light of Christ, and Jesus is the spokesperson. Jesus will set us aright, if we follow A Course in Miracles with an open mind. He speaks the truth, and we are well-advised to follow carefully what he says. The beauty of the language, the depth of the thinking, the clarity of what is said—all work together to give authenticity to A Course in Miracles as a legitimate, channeled work of Jesus. Who else could say such things? Who else speaks with such authority?
10 – Worlds
“Both this world and the real world are illusions because right-mindedness merely overlooks, or forgives, what never happened. Therefore it is not the One-mindedness of the Christ Mind, Whose Will is one with God’s. (C79)”
11 – One-Mindedness
We want to head toward this One-mindedness, and that, I believe, is what happens to us when we have awakened. Then our will is truly one with God’s, and our walk is completely unencumbered.
12 – One Will
The One-mindedness is when we recognize that God’s Will and ours is the same, and, most importantly, when we acknowledge God’s Will and consistently choose His Way, as shown us by the Holy Spirit.
13 – Consciousness
“Consciousness has levels and awareness can shift quite dramatically, but it cannot transcend the perceptual realm. At its highest it becomes aware of the real world, and can be trained to do increasingly. Yet the very fact that it has levels and can be trained demonstrates that it cannot reach knowledge. (C80)”
14 – Theory
These are the theoretical underpinnings of the Course. This passage indicates that achieving the real world, a world of love devoid of the ego, is a gradual process. Moreover, perception can be cleansed, and we seek to train our minds to increase our perception in order to get us out of the ego-oriented world that we see. But knowledge is of God, in revelation, and this cannot be taught. It is a gift of God, when we have removed the barriers to the presence of knowledge.
15 – Consciousness
Our consciousness is important to us, and we have learned falsely, through psychology, that a strong ego is necessary to live in this world. We do not need ego in the sense that the Course refers to the “ego.” But this word is slippery, and it is does not mean the same to all people, even psychologists. In the Course, the word “ego” is a false perception of ourselves, a false image that leads us into pain and suffering. It is not a thing that we would want, and we are bade to leave it behind.
16 – Ego Being Undone
In this world, the ego is constantly being undone. We are pricked at the point of our greatest pride, an egoistic trait. We are constantly brought low when the ego has been in ascendancy. This is no accident. It is the way of salvation for us, according to the Course.
17 – Real World
We may not realize it, but the real world is what we want while on this earth. The real world will sparkle with joy, and our eyes will light up at the thought of another day. Let us not be discouraged if we don’t achieve this boon on a constant basis. Elsewhere Jesus says that here we will not be without limitations, but that our task is to escape from them. This we will do increasingly as we study the Course and make its tenets our own.
May I be increasingly conscious of the real world of joy and love. I realize that this is still a perception, and so it is not the knowledge that only You can give. I hope to walk further along the pathway, so that I am ready for the knowledge that only You can impart.
Thank you for being there for me. As I pray so often, help me to follow in Your way and by Your guidance.