Today I wish to start a regular study of A Course In Miracles.
I will be utilizing the URTEXT.
I will copy short references here and comment on them.
Be forewarned that I read this text quite differently from others.
Helen Schuckman and William Thetford, the main scribes of the work whose author identified himself as Jesus of Nazareth took on the project not as Christians, but as psychologists looking for the keys to why humanity was not able to get along.
Kennith Wapnick was a third person to have a lot to do with editing and making the work readable.
In the reading of their history I prefer to use the pre-edited text. Urtext means the original text as noted in The American Heritage College Dictionary, 2007.
I approach ACIM as a follower of Jesus since the age of 4 and perhaps before. He led me to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at 27 years of age and I took my spiritual walk very seriously, not that I did not stumble plenty along the way.
I bring what I learned from the Holy Spirit about my life and about the gospel of Jesus Christ to this study.
I also bring a sincere “layman’s” study into this study, as I have sought to understand the workings of the mind and how to process the messages in my own head and heart so that they were what I understood to be the will of The Father of Christ. In this I have become very aware of the levels of consciousness under which we function as human beings. This may be the most poignant part of why I read ACIM different than others.
Today I can say “Fred Christ” or “Sally Christ” just as easily as I can say “Jesus Christ” and I do so in my prayers for others.
Disclaimer: You may consider me simply an old woman trying to come to terms with what I perceive as my own errors and the errors of the world around me, seeking justification to all the injustice and harm I have placed on the world. Or you can walk with me and see how I process what I consider to be one of the greatest works humanity has ever known.
I am excited about this journey together.
URTEXT ACIM pg 13
“It is crucial to say first that this is a required course.
Only the time you take it is voluntary.
Free will does not mean that you establish the curriculum.
It means only that you can elect what to take when.
It is just because you are not ready to do what you should elect to do that time exists at all. (You will see miracles thru your hands thru me. You should begin each day with the prayer “Help me to perform whatever miracles you want of me today.”)”
I have seen conflicting ideas on the very first sentence. Some have suggested the requirement was purely for Helen and Bill, however I strongly feel that this course is a requirement for all humanity.
That is not to say that these very words must be studied, for the Holy Spirit taught me many of the principles which I have found here before I found this particular book.
I believe, therefore, that all must pass through this course in comprehension of their place in the atonement and salvation of humanity.
“Only the time you take it is voluntary.” Time seems to be the decisive or only variable.
The recommended daily prayer at the bottom was removed from subsequent editions. I find that disconcerting. Jesus makes it clear that the work of miracles that will be done will be done in a unified manner that begins with him (only because he happened to be the first and the “assigned one” to remind us all of this gateway out of our psychological dilemma).
Here, in illusion of separation, context of hierarchy has been taught when referring to Jesus and this is something that we want to guard ourselves from when considering spiritual things. This, perhaps more than anything, explains the prayer’s exclusion.
There is no “greater than”, we are all of The Son of God. Anything less will fall short of taking mankind into its destiny, which is deliverance from illusion and into remembrance of the Love of God, The Father.
I know that this is in direct conflict with the teachings of many Christians, especially those who follow the General Authorities in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This is one of the specific reasons that I no longer consider myself a member there and I definitely do not speak on their behalf or as a representative of their teaching.
That being said I cannot pretend that they have not been a significant influence on who I am today and I am grateful for the things I learned through the Spirit while in their company for thirty years. Thus, I find myself an outsider and I am okay with this. There is no religious circle that I may truly identify with and that is just fine.
I will add a personal footnote here that I play with the day dream of attending the church when I return to Washington in the hopes of catching a glimpse of my brother and his family that I have not had the privilege of knowing throughout my life. I can see myself there occasionally or perhaps for a General Conference to hear what is being taught at this time to the masses that Jesus sought to preserve through this vehicle. Their doctrine teaches that all truth will come under its mantle.
I have no reason to believe the truths I understand would be welcome there at all (at this time) and so I will keep a healthy, intellectual distance. My opinion remains that this church was established by Jesus to allow his influence to be felt and the nurturing of those he so dearly loves to continue, even if it is with limited sight along the way. “They must be given milk first”. This is the most that any of us may do as long as we, even in part, fancy the idea that we exist outside of God.
How I wish I had this info when I was raising my children in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints under the auspice of free-agency. I am not sure that it would have made a difference but it would have made a lot more sense. The “free” part being only that we each decide the time and where we learn the truth.
Just to clarify, I believe the concepts presented within ACIM to be definitive of humanity’s purpose. This is also the purpose of time as noted. “It is just because you are not ready to do what you should elect to do that time exists at all.”
Some choices are mandatory. i.e. “what you should elect to do”. I am inclined to believe that there are many of us that have multiple lifetimes here before we understand this.
I believe this statement can be confusing. “You will see miracles thru your hands thru me.” What confuses us is the pronouns. First of all, we are all one so to even use pronouns is to be a part of the illusion. The “me” that Jesus is referring to here is the Christ that we all are, himself included. In other words as we perform the miracles that it will be that part of us that is truth and those who recognize and witness in this truth will be joining with us because we are one Son in reality.
Next comes the 50 points about miracles. I will be exploring them only a few at a time.
Till next time, God Bless, Namaste~