Values and behaviours engendered by A Course in Miracles.
A Course in Miracles sets out firstly the absolute value of Truth, God’s unchanging Truth, which is also Love. This Truth is undivided, all-encompassing and has no opposite. God only gives, extending Himself and His Truth and this is Life, this is Creation. His Son is like God the Father in every way, excepting the Son was created by the Father. Secondly, A Course in Miracles shows that to awaken and remember God’s Truth, and that we are His holy Son, we must once again, learn to give as God gives. To give as God gives is to become like Him and be restored to Wholeness. In the world this means that to give and receive are one, therefore to have and to know the truth one must re-learn to give. Forgiveness is the means by which we re-learn to give on earth, as a counterpart in time for the way God gives, or creates, in eternity.
“In the creation, God extended Himself to His creations and imbued them with the same loving Will to create. You have not only been fully created, but have also been created perfect. There is no emptiness in you. Because of your likeness to your Creator you are creative.” T-2.I.1
“Forgiveness is an earthly form of love, which as it is in Heaven has no form. Yet what is needed here is given here as it is needed.” W-186.14.3
“To give is how to recognize you have received. It is the proof that what you have is yours.” W-159.1
“You understand that you are healed when you give healing. You accept forgiveness as accomplished in yourself when you forgive. You recognize your brother as yourself, and thus do you perceive that you are whole. There is no miracle you cannot give…” W-159.1.7
“Today I learn the law of love; that what I give my brother is my gift to me…. he whom I forgive will give me gifts beyond the worth of anything on earth. Let my forgiven brothers fill my store with Heaven’s treasures, which alone are real. Thus is the law of love fulfilled. And thus Your Son arises and returns to You.“ W-344.1
To love your brother is to know the love of God for yourself and, because of mans inherent need for forgiveness of sin, forgiveness of others is the only way to find absolution from the sin and guilt of separation in our minds.
Whilst there is an intense inner practice involved with this spiritual programme, it is nothing without the existential need to actively participate in relationships and the world, for contained in them are all the lessons of forgiveness we need in order to find salvation.
“To the Holy Spirit, the world is a place where you learn to forgive yourself what you think of as your sins.” W-64.2
Equality – we are all equal in the sight of God regardless of race, creed, color, sexual orientation or political persuasion. Therefore we treat all people with dignity, respect and with a brother’s interest in their welfare. Moreover the recognition of the perfect equality of each one we meet invites the Holy Spirit’s recognition of our perfect equality in the sight of God. This recognition is the basis for all miracles.
“The Golden Rule is the rule for appropriate behavior. You cannot behave appropriately unless you perceive correctly. Since you and your neighbor are equal members of one family, as you perceive both so you will do to both. You should look out from the perception of your own holiness to the holiness of others.” T-1.III.6.4
“To the Holy Spirit, there is no order of difficulty in miracles…. You cannot perform miracles without believing it, because it is a belief in perfect equality. Only one equal gift can be offered to the equal Sons of God, and that is full appreciation. Nothing more and nothing less. Without a range, order of difficulty is meaningless, and there must be no range in what you offer to your brother.” T-6.V.A.4
“There is no order of difficulty in miracles because all of God’s Sons are of equal value, and their equality is their oneness. The whole power of God is in every part of Him. “ T-11.VI.10
Helpfulness – we can learn to be truly helpful in any and every situation by listening to God’s Voice and His guidance as to what to do or say. To be truly helpful is to respond to any distress with love, looking on everyone with ‘healed perception’, which is to ‘see’ them with forgiving eyes.
“His Voice will direct you very specifically. You will be told all you need to know.” T-1.I.4
“God is praised whenever any mind learns to be wholly helpful. This is impossible without being wholly harmless, because the two beliefs must coexist. The truly helpful are invulnerable, because they are not protecting their egos and so nothing can hurt them. Their helpfulness is their praise of God, and He will return their praise of Him because they are like Him, and they can rejoice together. God goes out to them and through them, and there is great joy throughout the Kingdom. Every mind that is changed adds to this joy with its individual willingness to share in it. The truly helpful are God’s miracle workers, whom I direct until we are all united in the joy of the Kingdom. I will direct you to wherever you can be truly helpful, and to whoever can follow my guidance through you.” T-4.VII.8
Kindness – those who learn to forgive themselves are wholly kind to everyone they meet, responding to each one with kindness and with care.
“The real world cannot be perceived except through eyes forgiveness blesses, so they see a world where terror is impossible, and witnesses to fear can not be found….
The real world shows a world seen differently, through quiet eyes and with a mind at peace. Nothing but rest is there. There are no cries of pain and sorrow heard, for nothing there remains outside forgiveness. And the sights are gentle. Only happy sights and sounds can reach the mind that has forgiven itself…
What need has such a mind for thoughts of death, attack and murder? What can it perceive surrounding it but safety, love and joy? What is there it would choose to be condemned, and what is there that it would judge against? The world it sees arises from a mind at peace within itself. No danger lurks in anything it sees, for it is kind, and only kindness does it look upon.“ W-pII.8. 1-3
Gentleness – those who have relinquished judgment and condemnation have found strength and safety in gentleness. It is their gentleness that offers a welcome to everyone they meet.
“The only safety lies in extending the Holy Spirit, because as you see His gentleness in others your own mind perceives itself as totally harmless. Once it can accept this fully, it sees no need to protect itself. The protection of God then dawns upon it, assuring it that it is perfectly safe forever. The perfectly safe are wholly benign. They bless because they know that they are blessed. Without anxiety the mind is wholly kind, and because it extends beneficence it is beneficent. Safety is the complete relinquishment of attack.” T-6.III.3
“In glory will you see your brother then, and understand what really fills the gap so long perceived as keeping you apart. There, in its place, God’s witness has set forth the gentle way of kindness to God’s Son. Whom you forgive is given power to forgive you your illusions. By your gift of freedom is it given unto you.” T-29.III.3.10
“Joy is the inevitable result of gentleness. Gentleness means that fear is now impossible, and what could come to interfere with joy? The open hands of gentleness are always filled. The gentle have no pain. They cannot suffer. Why would they not be joyous? They are sure they are beloved and must be safe. Joy goes with gentleness as surely as grief attends attack.” M-4,V.1
Honesty – is necessary for trust and communication because it implies there is nothing you would hide. It also implies an integrity because there is nothing contradictory about the communication. The truly honest are those who communicate their joy to those they meet.
“Only the trusting can afford honesty, for only they can see its value. Honesty does not apply only to what you say. The term actually means consistency. There is nothing you say that contradicts what you think or do; no thought opposes any other thought; no act belies your word; and no word lacks agreement with another. Such are the truly honest. At no level are they in conflict with themselves. Therefore it is impossible for them to be in conflict with anyone or anything.” M-4.II.1
“Every thought you would keep hidden shuts communication off, because you would have it so. It is impossible to recognize perfect communication while breaking communication holds value to you. Ask yourself honestly, “Would I want to have perfect communication, and am I wholly willing to let everything that interferes with it go forever?” T-15.IV.8
Generosity – the reversal of the thinking of the world is found here. By giving away what you truly value, by sharing it with others, it increases. The miracle worker discovers the gifts given him by God are his to give away. As he does so he realizes that what is within him that is of God is also what he is.
“If you are to save the world, you first accept salvation for yourself. But you will not believe that this is done until you see the miracles it brings to everyone you look upon. Herein is the idea of giving clarified and given meaning. Now you can perceive that by your giving is your store increased.
Protect all things you value by the act of giving them away, and you are sure that you will never lose them… Never forget you give but to yourself. Who understands what giving means must laugh at the idea of sacrifice.” W-187.4
“The Holy Spirit communicates only what each one can give to all. He never takes anything back, because He wants you to keep it. Therefore, His teaching begins with the lesson:
To have, give all to all.” T-6.V.A,.5
“You understand that you are healed when you give healing. You accept forgiveness as accomplished in yourself when you forgive. You recognize your brother as yourself, and thus do you perceive that you are whole. There is no miracle you cannot give, for all are given you. Receive them now by opening the storehouse of your mind where they are laid, and giving them away.” W-159.2
Defenselessness – safety lies in laying down our defensiveness that only masks our fears and keeps a wall between us. Defenses do what they defend against and though they are always justified, they only justify the fear of attack the ego feels. Laying down defenses brings openness, brings peace, and brings innocence and safety where there was fear and danger before. We are dismantling the walls we built to keep ourselves apart.
“Defenselessness is strength. It testifies to recognition of the Christ in you. Perhaps you will recall the text maintains that choice is always made between Christ’s strength and your own weakness, seen apart from Him. Defenselessness can never be attacked, because it recognizes strength so great attack is folly, or a silly game a tired child might play, when he becomes too sleepy to remember what he wants.” W-153.6
“You have not lost your innocence. It is for this you yearn. This is your heart’s desire. This is the voice you hear, and this the call which cannot be denied. The holy Child remains with you. His home is yours. Today He gives you His defenselessness, and you accept it in exchange for all the toys of battle you have made. And now the way is open, and the journey has an end in sight at last. Be still an instant and go home with Him, and be at peace a while.” W-182.12
“It is not danger that comes when defenses are laid down. It is safety. It is peace. It is joy. And it is God.” M-4.VI.1.11
Love your brother with a brother’s love – it takes a course in miracles to realize the truth that your brother, your neighbour, is your self. And your relationship with him is directly related to your relationship with God. Miracles open the heart and mind to the love you have for mankind; everyone you meet and everyone you know, for they are all the Sons of one Father and our brothers in love.
“…for you have come with but one purpose; that you learn you love your brother with a brother’s love. And as a brother, must his Father be the same as yours, as he is like yourself
in truth. “ T-31.II.10.5
“In your relationship with your brother, where He [Holy Sprit] has taken charge of everything at your request, He has set the course inward to the truth you share… Within yourself you love your brother with a perfect love. Here is holy ground, in which no substitution can enter, and where only the truth in your brother can abide. Here you are joined in God, as much together as you are with Him. The original error has not entered here, nor ever will. Here is the radiant truth, to which the Holy Spirit has committed your relationship. Let Him bring it here, where you would have it be. Give Him but a little faith in your brother, to help Him show you that no substitute you made for Heaven can keep you from it.” T-18.I.9
“It is no dream to love your brother as yourself. Nor is your holy relationship a dream. All that remains of dreams within it is that it is still a special relationship. Yet it is very useful to the Holy Spirit, Who has a special function here. It will become the happy dream through which He can spread joy to thousands on thousands who believe that love is fear, not happiness. “ T-18.V.5
Relationships – they are transformed under the Holy Spirit’s guidance to become a place of healing and forgiveness, where each one takes responsibility for their projections onto the other. They become the means for one’s forgiveness of oneself, changing the relationship from serving the ego to serving God. Under His guidance relationships become a garden of peace, union and joy, and a welcome place embracing everyone and inviting all to join with us in that joy.
“Your special relationship will be a means for undoing guilt in everyone blessed through your holy relationship. It will be a happy dream, and one which you will share with all who come within your sight. Through it, the blessing the Holy Spirit has laid upon it will be extended.” T-18.II.7
“The holy relationship, a major step toward the perception of the real world, is learned. It is the old, unholy relationship, transformed and seen anew. The holy relationship is a phenomenal teaching accomplishment. In all its aspects, as it begins, develops and becomes accomplished, it represents the reversal of the unholy relationship.” T-17.V.2.
“A holy relationship starts from a different premise. Each one has looked within and seen no lack. Accepting his completion, he would extend it by joining with another, whole as himself. He sees no difference between these selves, for differences are only of the body. Therefore, he looks on nothing he would take. He denies not his own reality because it is the truth. Just under Heaven does he stand, but close enough not to return to earth. For this relationship has Heaven’s Holiness. How far from home can a relationship so like to Heaven be?” T-22.in.3
“Think what a holy relationship can teach! Here is belief in differences undone. Here is the faith in differences shifted to sameness. And here is sight of differences transformed to vision. Reason now can lead you and your brother to the logical conclusion of your union. It must extend, as you extended when you and he joined. It must reach out beyond itself, as you reached out beyond the body, to let you and your brother be joined. And now the sameness that you saw extends and finally removes all sense of differences, so that the sameness that lies beneath them all becomes apparent. Here is the golden circle where you recognize the Son of God. For what is born into a holy relationship can never end.” T-22.in.4.
“In this world, God’s Son comes closest to himself in a holy relationship. There he begins to find the certainty his Father has in him. And there he finds his function of restoring his Father’s laws to what was held outside them, and finding what was lost… So do the parts of God’s Son gradually join in time, and with each joining is the end of time brought nearer. Each miracle of joining is a mighty herald of eternity. No one who has a single purpose, unified and sure, can be afraid. No one who shares his purpose with him can not be one with him.” T-20.V.1
“In the holy instant, you and your brother stand before the altar God has raised unto Himself and both of you. Lay faithlessness aside, and come to it together. There will you see the miracle of your relationship as it was made again through faith. And there it is that you will realize that there is nothing faith cannot forgive.“ T-19.I.14
“You have been called, together with your brother, to the most holy function this world contains. It is the only one that has no limits, and reaches out to every broken fragment of the Sonship with healing and uniting comfort. This is offered you, in your holy relationship. Accept it here, and you will give as you have accepted. The peace of God is given you with the glowing purpose in which you join with your brother. The holy light that brought you and him together must extend, as you accepted it.” T-18.I.13
“The holy relationship is the expression of the holy instant in living in this world. Like everything about salvation, the holy instant is a practical device, witnessed to by its results. The holy instant never fails. The experience of it is always felt. Yet without expression it is not remembered. The holy relationship is a constant reminder of the experience in which the relationship became what it is. And as the unholy relationship is a continuing hymn of hate in praise of its maker, so is the holy relationship a happy song of praise to the Redeemer of relationships.” T-17.V.1
The Holiness of all living things – as the mind is changed through forgiveness, holiness is brought into awareness. We see in all living things what we have seen within ourselves. All living things are holy because we are. Every one is perceived through the holiness that God has given each part of creation.
“Christ’s hand holds all His brothers in Himself. He gives them vision for their sightless eyes, and sings to them of Heaven, that their ears may hear no more the sound of battle and of death. He reaches through them, holding out His hand, that everyone may bless all living things, and see their holiness.” T-24.V.7
“As I share the peace of the world with my brothers, I begin to understand that this peace comes from deep within myself. The world I look upon has taken on the light of my forgiveness, and shines forgiveness back at me. In this light I begin to see what my illusions about myself kept hidden. I begin to understand the holiness of all living things, including myself, and their oneness with me.” W-57.5.(35)
“We thank our Father for one thing alone; that we are separate from no living thing, and therefore one with Him. And we rejoice that no exceptions ever can be made which would reduce our wholeness, nor impair or change our function to complete the One Who is Himself completion. We give thanks for every living thing, for otherwise we offer thanks for nothing, and we fail to recognize the gifts of God to us.” W-195.6
“Christ’s face is seen in every living thing, and nothing is held in darkness, apart from the light of forgiveness. There is no sorrow still upon the earth. The joy of Heaven has come upon it.” M-28.2.6
“Forgiveness shines its merciful reprieve upon each blade of grass and feathered wing and all the living things upon the earth. Fear has no haven here, for love has come in all its holy oneness.” S-3.IV.2
“Such is the promise of the living God; His Son have life and every living thing be part of him…” T-29.II.6
“God gave you all there is. And to be sure you could not lose it, did He also give the same to every living thing as well. And thus is every living thing a part of you, as of Himself. “ T-29.VIII.9.7
Purity of Mind – we are responsible for our thoughts for they have powerful effects. We are not alone in experiencing the effects of our thinking; salvation therefore requires that we purify our thoughts so that we do not ‘offend’ the truth in ourselves or in others.
“If you perceive offense in a brother pluck the offense from your mind, for you are offended by Christ and are deceived in Him. Heal in Christ and be not offended by Him, for there is no offense in Him. If what you perceive offends you, you are offended in yourself and are condemning God’s Son whom God condemneth not. Let the Holy Spirit remove all offenses of God’s Son against himself and perceive no one but through His guidance, for He would save you from all condemnation.” T-11.VIII.12
“Now a quiet time has come, in which we put away the toys of guilt, and lock our quaint and childish thoughts of sin forever from the pure and holy minds of Heaven’s children and the Son of God.” W-153.13
“Only God’s Comforter can comfort you. In the quiet of His temple, He waits to give you the peace that is yours. Give His peace, that you may enter the temple and find it waiting for you. But be holy in the Presence of God, or you will not know that you are there. For what is unlike God cannot enter His Mind, because it was not His Thought and therefore does not belong to Him. And your mind must be as pure as His, if you would know what belongs to you. Guard carefully His temple, for He Himself dwells there and abides in peace.” T-11.III.7
“The necessary condition for the holy instant does not require that you have no thoughts that are not pure. But it does require that you have none that you would keep. Innocence is not of your making. It is given you the instant you would have it. Atonement would not be if there were no need for it… In your practice, then, try only to be vigilant against deception, and seek not to protect the thoughts you would keep to yourself. Let the Holy Spirit’s purity shine them away, and bring all your awareness to the readiness for purity He offers you. Thus will He make you ready to acknowledge that you are host to God, and hostage to no one and to nothing.” T-15.IV.3
“There is a borderland of thought that stands between this world and Heaven. It is not a place, and when you reach it is apart from time. Here is the meeting place where thoughts are brought together; where conflicting values meet and all illusions are laid down beside the truth, where they are judged to be untrue. This borderland is just beyond the gate of Heaven. Here is every thought made pure and wholly simple. Here is sin denied, and everything that is received instead.” T-26.III.2
Teach only love – the only valid response to any kind of injustice, condemnation or attack. For those who condemn or attack are themselves fearful, otherwise they would not attack. True perception gives no ‘cause’ to fear by not responding in kind. Simply by not attacking or defending in return, and looking beyond the fear or pain of the one who is attacking, to the truth in them, we teach only love and the silent miracle of perfect defenselessness. Those who forgive can be forgiving and offer the miracle that undoes the fear in others.
“Consider how well the Holy Spirit’s interpretation of the motives of others will serve you then. Having taught you to accept only loving thoughts in others and to regard everything else as an appeal for help, He has taught you that fear itself is an appeal for help. This is what recognizing fear really means. If you do not protect it, He will reinterpret it. That is the ultimate value in learning to perceive attack as a call for love. We have already learned that fear and attack are inevitably associated. If only attack produces fear, and if you see attack as the call for help that it is, the unreality of fear must dawn on you. For fear is a call for love, in unconscious recognition of what has been denied.” T-12.I.8
“If you would look upon love, which is the world’s reality, how could you do better than to recognize, in every defense against it, the underlying appeal for it? And how could you better learn of its reality than by answering the appeal for it by giving it? The Holy Spirit’s interpretation of fear does dispel it, for the awareness of truth cannot be denied. Thus does the Holy Spirit replace fear with love and translate error into truth. And thus will you learn of Him how to replace your dream of separation with the fact of unity.” T-12.I.10
“Make way for love, which you did not create, but which you can extend. On earth this means forgive your brother, that the darkness may be lifted from your mind.” T-29.III.4.
See also Chapter 6, The Lessons of Love
Teaching Peace – the way to peace is through forgiveness, which removes the obstacles to its attainment. If you want the peace of God, everything that interferes with it must be undone. The students of Jesus in A Course in Miracles, stand with him and teach His peace in all temptation to perceive conflict. Peace extends from them drawing others in to join them in this peace.
“The only way to have peace is to teach peace. By teaching peace you must learn it yourself, because you cannot teach what you still dissociate. Only thus can you win back the knowledge that you threw away. An idea that you share you must have. It awakens in your mind through the conviction of teaching it.” T-6.III.4
“Blessed are you who teach with me…Teach peace with me, and stand with me on holy ground… Believe not that you cannot teach His perfect peace. Stand not outside, but join with me within. Fail not the only purpose to which my teaching calls you. Restore to God His Son as He created him, by teaching him his innocence” T-14.V.9
“Peace, then, be unto everyone who becomes a teacher of peace. For peace is the acknowledgment of perfect purity, from which no one is excluded. Within its holy circle is everyone whom God created as His Son. Joy is its unifying attribute, with no one left outside to suffer guilt alone. The power of God draws everyone to its safe embrace of love and union. Stand quietly within this circle, and attract all tortured minds to join with you in the safety of its peace and holiness.” T-14.V.8
“The peace He lay, deep within you and your brother, will quietly extend to every aspect of your life, surrounding you and your brother with glowing happiness and the calm awareness of complete protection. And you will carry its message of love and safety and freedom to everyone who draws nigh unto your temple, where healing waits for him. You will not wait to give him this, for you will call to him and he will answer you, recognizing in your call the Call for God. And you will draw him in and give him rest, as it was given you.” T-19.IV.1.6
“If you want peace you must abandon the teacher of attack. The Teacher of peace will never abandon you… With your perfection ever in His sight, He gives the gift of peace to everyone who perceives the need for peace, and who would have it. Make way for peace, and it will come. For understanding is in you, and from it peace must come. “ T-14.XI.14
Purpose – Individuals find a new purpose in the Course that gives meaning, direction, healing and new, positive energy and perspective to their lives. The Holy Spirit’s purpose is to help you fulfill the function God has established for bringing joy to your relationships with everyone and everything.
“How lovely is the world whose purpose is forgiveness of God’s Son! How free from fear, how filled with blessing and with happiness!” T-29.VI.6
“Peace fills my heart, and floods my body with the purpose of forgiveness. Now my mind is healed, and all I need to save the world is given me.” W-267.1
“Father, forgiveness is Your chosen means for our salvation. Let us not forget today that we can have no will but Yours. And thus our purpose must be Yours as well, if we would reach the peace You will for us.” W-257.2
“Salvation must reverse the mad belief in separate thoughts and separate bodies, which lead separate lives and go their separate ways. One function shared by separate minds unites them in one purpose, for each one of them is equally essential to them all.” W-100.1
Joy – God offers only His joy to all who would unite with Him in His purpose to bring only joy to His beloved children who have fallen asleep into a dream of misery and pain. Miracles awaken the call to joy and that joy calls to everyone to share in it, to unite in healing and in peace.
“Just as your light increases every light that shines in Heaven, so your joy on earth calls to all minds to let their sorrows go, and take their place beside you in God’s plan. God’s messengers are joyous, and their joy heals sorrow and despair. They are the proof that God wills perfect happiness for all who will accept their Father’s gifts as theirs.” W-100.4.2
“God asks you to be happy, so the world can see how much He loves His Son, and wills no sorrow rises to abate his joy; no fear besets him to disturb his peace. You are God’s messenger today. You bring His happiness to all you look upon; His peace to everyone who looks on you and sees His message in your happy face. “ W-100.6
“The world you see does nothing. It has no effects at all. It merely represents your thoughts. And it will change entirely as you elect to change your mind, and choose the joy of God as what you really want. Your Self is radiant in this holy joy, unchanged, unchanging and unchangeable, forever and forever.” W-190.6.2
“O my child, if you knew what God wills for you, your joy would be complete! And what He wills has happened, for it was always true. When the light comes and you have said, “God’s Will is mine,” you will see such beauty that you will know it is not of you. Out of your joy you will create beauty in His Name, for your joy could no more be contained than His.” T-11.III.3