ACIM Chapter 2. V. The Function of the Miracle Worker, P 7, 8

ACIM Chapter 2. V. The Function of the Miracle Worker, P 7, 8. Corrective learning always begins with the awakening of spirit, and the turning away from the belief in physical sight.

ACIM Chapter 2, V. The Function of the Miracle Worker, P 7, 8. Corrective learning always begins with the awakening of spirit, and the turning away from the belief in physical sight.

ACIM V. The Function of the Miracle Worker, P 7, 8

V. The Function of the Miracle Worker, P 7

7 Corrective learning always begins with the awakening of spirit, and the turning away from the belief in physical sight. This often entails fear, because you are afraid of what your spiritual sight will show you. I said before that the Holy Spirit cannot see error, and is capable only of looking beyond it to the defense of Atonement. There is no doubt that this may produce discomfort, yet the discomfort is not the final outcome of the perception. When the Holy Spirit is permitted to look upon the defilement of the altar, He also looks immediately toward the Atonement. Nothing He perceives can induce fear. Everything that results from spiritual awareness is merely channelized toward correction. Discomfort is aroused only to bring the need for correction into awareness.

Seeing it Differently

I understand this. I have been studying the Course for over 40 years now, and for the first 20 years, this was slow going and often so uncomfortable for me that I would have to stop for a while. That was because I was drowning in guilt and shame, and fear. I knew, intellectually, that I could not actually hide anything from Spirit, but I could not bring myself to look at my guilt, much less invite Holy Spirit to look with me.

So, I took it slow and did the best I could. I would look at something from my past, and I would feel even guiltier and more afraid, but I did it anyway, and then I would see that I survived it and even felt better afterward. I was encouraged to do it again. This went on for quite some time, and slowly my trust grew, and the whole process sped up. I was no longer so afraid, and the peace that grew out of the process was a tremendous motivation to do more.

From then on, I was vigilant in this work, and now I look without flinching. I look with an eagerness born of certainty that whatever discomfort I feel will pass quickly as the mind is healed. Looking at the errors in my mind is not the fearful work I used to think it was. Rather, it is my way out of pain and suffering. I have stopped judging what I find there. Spirit has taught me that none of it is personal and that doing this work is my purpose.

A New Perspective

Here is something else that changed. In the past, I would remember something I did that brought me shame or caused me to feel guilty when the memory rose in my mind. It was the act or the words that I thought of and that I felt bad about. I wanted to be forgiven for doing or saying this thing. Now I see the action or the words as symbols only. They represent a belief in my mind that needs to be looked at and then healed.

Seeing it from that perspective is very helpful. It makes it easier to do the work, but more importantly, I am learning that the world is not real and that this story is just a story and is not me. I am forgiven because nothing has happened. I am not here, living in this body, doing cruel or thoughtless things to other bodies. Instead, I am watching the thoughts that have taken form from the beliefs in the mind. I am watching them and learning that they are not true and that I don’t want them anymore. That is all that is happening.

Learning to Master this Change

I go back and forth on this still, sometimes watching the story with detachment and sometimes watching myself fall into the story. The difference is that I am never just lost in the story, completely involved and unable to step back from it. And I know it is just a matter of time and practice before I can remain the observer, completely detached. I know this is so because the more often I look with the Holy Spirit, the harder it becomes to believe in the story. This is my process, and it is the same one I have used consistently for many years. It works so I keep doing it.

V. The Function of the Miracle Worker, P 8

8 The fear of healing arises in the end from an unwillingness to accept unequivocally that healing is necessary. What the physical eye sees is not corrective, nor can error be corrected by any device that can be seen physically. As long as you believe in what your physical sight tells you, your attempts at correction will be misdirected. The real vision is obscured, because you cannot endure to see your own defiled altar. But since the altar has been defiled, your state becomes doubly dangerous unless it is perceived.

There is a reason it is so important that I look with the Holy Spirit at the mistaken thoughts in my mind for them to be healed. Jesus explains here in this paragraph that I don’t fully accept that healing is necessary. If I don’t want to see how badly I have defiled the altar, I will refuse to look at my mind, but not looking does not mean the altar is not defiled, and so I would remain unhealed.

At first, I hid from my mistaken thoughts by projecting blame onto everyone and everything else. This seemed perfectly normal to me. In fact, when I first became aware of this, it was hard for me to see how the cause could be anything but outside me. For instance, It just seemed so obvious to me that it was my husband’s fault that I was miserable. Jeez, anyone who would look at his behavior could see why I was miserable.

The Flaw in My Logic

I wanted to believe what I read in the Course, but it seemed self-evident that the cause of my unhappiness lay in the world. What I did see clearly was that if the Course was wrong and I was right, then I was doomed because there was no hope. I could not change other people, and I could not control the world. My hope lay in seeing things differently. So I gave more willingness to that, and I stayed vigilant in looking at my mistaken thoughts instead of looking for people to blame.

At first, looking at the defiled altar was hard, and I was resistant because of the fear that God would condemn me for what I found there. It’s funny when I think about it. It seems that I believed that if I didn’t look at what was in my mind and if I didn’t take responsibility for it, then I was safe from God. I was miserable, but at least God would not know what I had done. If I couldn’t see it, then God couldn’t see it, seemed to be my strange logic.

Because of consistent practice, I have become nearly fearless in looking for mistaken thoughts. I see now that instead of being condemned for them as I had thought before, just the opposite is happening. I am being healed. This is wonderful motivation for going further and looking more deeply.

Looking at Pain and Sickness

When the body is in pain, I realize it could only happen because I believe in pain. This must be a mistaken belief because Jesus says pain is not real. So, I ask that my mind be healed of this belief and that the Holy Spirit show me other beliefs in my mind that are related to this one. I see that I am using sickness to defend against God. I am, in effect, saying that because I feel pain, and pain is not of God, then I must be separate from God. Maybe God does not even exist.

Through my pain, I have protected myself from God by denying His existence, and the proof is in my suffering. That was a very scary thought. I knew this, but it took a while to accept that this was my plan all along. Finally, I was willing to really look, to accept responsibility for the plan. Then I became willing to let it go, and my mind was healed.

Learning to Let Go of the Resistance

This is a very big part of the ego’s plan to remain separate from God, and so I did this in layers. I looked at the thought and ask for healing, and I saw proof of the healing. But then I picked it up again, perhaps in some new form, and it seemed like I would have to start all over. But not really. I noticed that the next time, there is not so much reluctance to look, and letting it go is easier. Each time I did this, I moved through the process more quickly and with less resistance.

So, my first step was to become aware that I was hiding from God behind my pain and suffering. Then I had to become willing to look at the hiding places in my mind, the thoughts and beliefs that were the barriers against God, and be willing to give them up. I had to leave hiding and stand before God without my defenses. Once I did this and saw that I was not punished or condemned for my error, it was just a matter of practice as I chipped away at the ego’s defenses.

Making Exceptions

What I then noticed is that the ego mind was getting sneakier. It was making exceptions to the rule, holding out certain areas in my life, saying that these areas are special and the rules do not apply. There were areas in my life that I was willing to see differently, and where I did choose differently, my experience changed.

For instance, I could pretty easily see that I was projecting my self-loathing onto others when I experienced them as rejecting me. I was willing to see that unconscious guilt was the true source of my feelings of unworthiness and not the other person. As I became willing to let that be healed, I noticed that people no longer reject me. I was no longer rejectable in my own mind, and so I did not have that experience in my life. Even if someone meant to reject me, I didn’t feel rejected unless that became my choice again.

I began to see that when I experienced sadness that I was doing it to myself. I could see that the sadness was in my mind and then took form in the world. It was there because I missed God and lived as if God was not my Source. But then that thought would lead me directly to the fear of God that I spent my life trying to avoid. So, it seemed to me that it was better to project that sadness. It appeared as circumstances that explained it away and proved that I was not the wrong-doer (that I had not rejected God) but was the victim. Better to be the victim than the target of an angry God seemed to be my logic.

Sneaky Ego

Once I became willing to look at my thoughts about this and then see it differently, I was willing to let this be healed. There were many thoughts like this, each one coming into my awareness through the circumstances of my life. As each one was looked at unflinchingly, it was let go. And since the thought was no longer there, and so there was no longer a need to hide it, the projection disappeared as well. My life became happier and more peaceful. That only makes sense.

Here is where the ego got really sneaky. As I was studying the Course, my ego was studying right along with me. The ego learned the language and used it to confuse the situation. I bet most Course students have noticed this. I said that there were certain areas in my life where the ego would make special idols that were untouchable. The way this was done was by using the spiritual language of the Course to confuse the mind.

An example is healing of the body. I won’t go into this too deeply right now, but here is how it played out for me. I would get sick and would be willing to look at the belief in sickness in my mind. And I could even accept that this belief was just another defense against God. After all, how could God be real if pain and suffering are real?

Becoming Confused

Where the ego confused me was in seeing the effects of the mind healed of this belief. The ego would say that the body is not real, so I should not be concerned with it, and to do so would be to make it more real. I should have caught on to this much sooner, but the words sounded right, and there is still fear of God in my mind, so I went along with the ego for a long time.

But eventually, the Holy Spirit found a workaround for me. He helped me to bypass the ego thinking by guiding me to specific Lessons and to a study of the Manual for Teachers, and also a study of The Song of Prayer, and now a slow and careful study of the Text. Slowly, I began to see that my thinking was screwed up and that excluding the body (and certain other areas) from the miracle failed to make sense.

If the mind is sick, it will project a sick world. If the mind is healed, it will project a healed world. There are no exceptions to this, and to make false exceptions is just another ego attempt to make separation real. By convincing me that the body should be excluded from the miracle, the ego was ensuring that I reserve some part of the illusion, and even one small thing held onto keeps me imprisoned in my illusions. God is whole, and I cannot know Wholeness if I still cling to separation.

A Tangle of Thoughts

Excluding the body from miracles also served to confuse me about healing. I would feel peaceful when I turned the belief over to the Holy Spirit. I always feel peaceful when I do that. But then the body would be sick, and I would be fearful that I had failed. Or worse, that God had failed or that God didn’t really love me. Then I would see that thought and could not reconcile it with the Course. So I would decide that I was not supposed to include the body. But then I was making special and separate, so how could that be right? You see how tangled the mind becomes when we allow the ego to join us on our spiritual path?

The cause of the world is the thoughts in my mind. Change these thoughts, and the world changes. No exceptions. No special circumstances. If it is true for anything, it is true for all things. I choose not to make a false idol of sickness. As my mind heals, the sickness of the body becomes exposed for the fraud it is. If I slip back into false thinking again and this is projected onto the body, then it is just another opportunity to remember the truth for us all.


The guiltless mind cannot suffer. ²Being sane, the mind heals the body because it has been healed. (ACIM, T-5.V.5:1-2)

⁵The body is released because the mind acknowledges “this is not done to me, but I am doing this.” (ACIM, T-28.II.12:5)

Now is the body healed, because the source of sickness has been opened to relief. (ACIM, W-136.17:1)

³The body can become a sign of life, a promise of redemption, and a breath of immortality to those grown sick of breathing in the fetid scent of death. ⁴Let it have healing as its purpose. ⁵Then will it send forth the message it received, and by its health and loveliness proclaim the truth and value that it represents. (ACIM, T-27.I.10:3-5)

To read my Pathways of Light blog on giving up the god of sickness, CLICK HERE.

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