Who Wrote A Course in Miracles?
Most believing ACIM students think that the Jesus of the Bible wrote the Course.
Because the author pretty much says so. Numerous times we come across statements where the author speaks in the first person as the voice of Jesus such as:
“I elected, for your sake and mine, to demonstrate that the most outrageous assault, as judged by the ego, does not matter. As the world judges these things, but not as God knows them, I was betrayed, abandoned, beaten, torn, and finally killed.” T-6.I.9
“When I said “I am come as a light into the world,” I meant that I came to share the light with you.” T-5.VI.11
“When I said “I am with you always,” I meant it literally. I am not absent to anyone in any situation.” T-7.III.1
“I have also made it clear that the resurrection was the means for the return to knowledge, which was accomplished by the union of my will with the Father’s.” T-3.V.1.
But then the author often speaks of Christ in the third person. For instance, he again speaks of the resurrection as follows :
“The resurrection is the complete triumph of Christ over the ego, not by attack but by transcendence. 7 For Christ does rise above the ego and all its works, and ascends to the Father and His Kingdom.” T-11.VI.1
Then statements such as this are typical of the third person referencing.
“Christ waits for your acceptance of Him as yourself, and of His Wholeness as yours.” T-11.IV.7
It may seem odd for an author to reference himself in the third person, but many have done it so this is certainly not without precedent. It can, however, arouse suspicion if authorship is in question.
In defense one could argue that ACIM teaches that the Christ, or the Son of God, in its wholeness is composed of all of us in our true nature, not just the one man, Jesus.
It is interesting that the most quoted authority on the Course who was also its original editor as well as a friend of Helen Schucman, Kenneth Wapnick, was not sure if the voice was the Jesus of history.
He wrote this:
“Returning now to Helen and the Course, while her experience most definitely was of Jesus-a person outside herself-relating to her and dictating to her, in truth the reality was much different. Helen was able to return her mind to that memory of God’s Love-her true Identity-symbolized by her as Jesus. By uniting with him, she united with love. That union has no form or specifics, for love, as we have seen, is abstract and beyond all divisions of the ego. This love, of which Jesus was the manifestation, flowed through the separated mind we know as Helen (the water taking shape in the glass) and came out to the world as the three books we know as A Course in Miracles. Absence of Felicity, Page 457
So, here Ken gives his view that Helen was not in contact with Jesus, a different entity than herself but “was able to return her mind to that memory of God’s Love-her true Identity-symbolized by her as Jesus.”
So, according to him Helen had the ability to unite with her Christ self which is still with God and through this contact, with what is often called “the Higher Self”, she was able to manifest the Course.
Are there any other possibilities?
Some, of course, believe that Helen, as a clever person, was the author. Most who have taken a serious study of it do not think she had the ability to create such a document.
Of course, many reactionary fundamentalist Christians believe that Satan was the author. This makes no sense for a number of reasons.
(1) ACIM emphasizes the most important teachings of the Biblical Jesus such as, love, forgiveness and the reality of the resurrection.
(2) One can disagree with some of the teachings but any astute student must admit the Course guides us toward a behavior that is good and not evil.
As noted, any honest student who has really examined the Course must admit that the mind that revealed it is of a very high order, seemingly far beyond Helen’s intelligence.
Is it possible that another entity who was neither Jesus or Helen revealed it? Is it possible that this entity also identified with Christ because he was speaking from the higher mind which is one with Christ or the “One Son” mentioned in the Course?
This is an interesting possibility not considered by most students.
Some who take a cursory interest in the Course may think the author is an astral entity such as those contacted in the trance state or by automatic writing. But most of these channelings do not create writings of such a high order of intelligence as ACIM. Those entities who are one with the Christ mind do not use such methods, but will use a means of mental impression or mental telepathy.
In Helen’s case it was mental telepathy.
In September 1965 Helen Schucman was working to advance her career as a psychologist at Columbia University working in association with Bill Thetford, also a psychologist.
Out of the blue she started getting some impressions, visions and hearing an inner voice. She kept getting the feeling that something unusual was going to happen.
Then one evening in October while sitting in her bedroom she clearly and consciously registered a Voice which said: “This is a course in miracles. Please take notes.”
She was somewhat alarmed, thinking she may be experiencing a psychological problem and called Bill for advice. Fortunately, instead of dismissing it he told her to write down what the Voice said and they would talk about it in the morning.
The next day Bill reviewed Helens notes and saw they were far from the gibberish of someone with a mental problem. The writing seemed to be presented with high intelligence and her notes ended with this profound statement:
“Nothing real can be threatened.
Nothing unreal exists.
Herein lies the peace of God.”
Bill was impressed and advised her to continue taking notes. He wanted to read more.
She took down a few more notes and began to wonder what the Course was all about and what its purpose was. She asked the voice and received this reply:
“The world situation is worsening to an alarming degree. People all over the world are being called on to help, and are making their individual contributions as part of an overall prearranged plan. Part of the plan is taking down A Course in Miracles, and I am fulfilling my part in the agreement, as you will fulfill yours. You will be using abilities you developed long ago, and which you are not really ready to use again. Because of the acute emergency, however, the usual slow, evolutionary process is being by-passed in what might best be described as a celestial speed-up.”
For the next seven years Helen took the Voice down in shorthand and read them off to Bill who typed them up.
Unlike many new age trance channelers Helen was quite reluctant and sometimes dragged her feet and delayed the work. Like the voice said, she was not ready for the job but apparently the world situation called for her early cooperation. Fortunately, her sense of duty got the best of her.
She was a non religious Jew and didn’t feel she was a good choice for the job so she asked the voice: “Why me? I’m not religious; I don’t understand these things; I don’t even believe them. I’m about the poorest choice you could make.”
The answer came back very clearly. “On the contrary; you are an excellent choice. In fact, the best.”
“But why?” she anguished. And then, without a hint of doubt she heard the answer; “Because you’ll do it.”
(Quotations from Journey Without Distance by Robert Skutch)
Later she learned that she had been an Essene in a past life, apparently in the days of Jesus, and had developed the mental skills necessary for her current work as a scribe using mental telepathy.
Kenneth Wapnick refers to the process of her work as “‘internal dictation’; that is, she did not go into an altered state, a trance, or engage in automatic writing. She was always aware of what she was doing, even if she chose not to pay attention to it. Regardless of her attitude, the writing would continue.”
Many students of Eastern teachings, Theosophy and the Ancient Wisdom will rule out most anything from the trance state or automatic writing and believe that true masters use a process similar to what Helen described. This is very similar to how Alice A. Bailey received her teachings and ironically she was also very reluctant to take the notes at the beginning.
So then we have a scribe receiving through a high order of telepathy giving us writings from a mind with intelligence beyond mortal wisdom. Whether one believes this was the mind of Jesus or some other high intelligence, the writing is compelling enough that any serious thinker would be wise to take its content seriously.
Read the Introduction HERE
Read Chapter One HERE
Copyright by J J Dewey
JJ’s Amazon page HERE
Gather with JJ on Facebook HERE