MANUAL FOR TEACHERS
M-in.1. The role of teaching and learning is actually reversed in the thinking of the world. 2 The reversal is characteristic. 3 It seems as if the teacher and the learner are separated, the teacher giving something to the learner rather than to himself. 4 Further, the act of teaching is regarded as a special activity, in which one engages only a relatively small proportion of one's time. 5 The course, on the other hand, emphasizes that to teach is to learn, so that teacher and learner are the same. 6 It also emphasizes that teaching is a constant process; it goes on every moment of the day, and continues into sleeping thoughts as well.
M-in.2. To teach is to demonstrate. 2 There are only two thought systems, and you demonstrate that you believe one or the other is true all the time. 3 From your demonstration others learn, and so do you. 4 The question is not whether you will teach, for in that there is no choice. 5 The purpose of the course might be said to provide you with a means of choosing what you want to teach on the basis of what you want to learn. 6 You cannot give to someone else, but only to yourself, and this you learn through teaching. 7 Teaching is but a call to witnesses to attest to what you believe. 8 It is a method of conversion. 9 This is not done by words alone. 10 Any situation must be to you a chance to teach others what you are, and what they are to you. 11 No more than that, but also never less.
M-in.3. The curriculum you set up is therefore determined exclusively by what you think you are, and what you believe the relationship of others is to you. 2 In the formal teaching situation, these questions may be totally unrelated to what you think you are teaching. 3 Yet it is impossible not to use the content of any situation on behalf of what you really teach, and therefore really learn. 4 To this the verbal content of your teaching is quite irrelevant. 5 It may coincide with it, or it may not. 6 It is the teaching underlying what you say that teaches you. 7 Teaching but reinforces what you believe about yourself. 8 Its fundamental purpose is to diminish self-doubt. 9 This does not mean that the self you are trying to protect is real. 10 But it does mean that the self you think is real is what you teach.
M-in.4. This is inevitable. 2 There is no escape from it. 3 How could it be otherwise? 4 Everyone who follows the world's curriculum, and everyone here does follow it until he changes his mind, teaches solely to convince himself that he is what he is not. 5 Herein is the purpose of the world. 6 What else, then, would its curriculum be? 7 Into this hopeless and closed learning situation, which teaches nothing but despair and death, God sends His teachers. 8 And as they teach His lessons of joy and hope, their learning finally becomes complete.
M-in.5. Except for God's teachers there would be little hope of salvation, for the world of sin would seem forever real. 2 The self-deceiving must deceive, for they must teach deception. 3 And what else is hell? 4 This is a manual for the teachers of God. 5 They are not perfect, or they would not be here. 6 Yet it is their mission to become perfect here, and so they teach perfection over and over, in many, many ways, until they have learned it. 7 And then they are seen no more, although their thoughts remain a source of strength and truth forever. 8 Who are they? 9 How are they chosen? 10 What do they do? 11 How can they work out their own salvation and the salvation of the world? 12 This manual attempts to answer these questions.
1. WHO ARE GOD'S TEACHERS?
M-1.1. A teacher of God is anyone who chooses to be one. 2 His qualifications consist solely in this; somehow, somewhere he has made a deliberate choice in which he did not see his interests as apart from someone else's. 3 Once he has done that, his road is established and his direction is sure. 4 A light has entered the darkness. 5 It may be a single light, but that is enough. 6 He has entered an agreement with God even if he does not yet believe in Him. 7 He has become a bringer of salvation. 8 He has become a teacher of God.
M-1.2. They come from all over the world. 2 They come from all religions and from no religion. 3 They are the ones who have answered. 4 The Call is universal. 5 It goes on all the time everywhere. 6 It calls for teachers to speak for It and redeem the world. 7 Many hear It, but few will answer. 8 Yet it is all a matter of time. 9 Everyone will answer in the end, but the end can be a long, long way off. 10 It is because of this that the plan of the teachers was established. 11 Their function is to save time. 12 Each one begins as a single light, but with the Call at its center it is a light that cannot be limited. 13 And each one saves a thousand years of time as the world judges it. 14 To the Call Itself time has no meaning.
M-1.3. There is a course for every teacher of God. 2 The form of the course varies greatly. 3 So do the particular teaching aids involved. 4 But the content of the course never changes. 5 Its central theme is always, "God's Son is guiltless, and in his innocence is his salvation." 6 It can be taught by actions or thoughts; in words or soundlessly; in any language or in no language; in any place or time or manner. 7 It does not matter who the teacher was before he heard the Call. 8 He has become a savior by his answering. 9 He has seen someone else as himself. 10 He has therefore found his own salvation and the salvation of the world. 11 In his rebirth is the world reborn.
M-1.4. This is a manual for a special curriculum, intended for teachers of a special form of the universal course. 2 There are many thousands of other forms, all with the same outcome. 3 They merely save time. 4 Yet it is time alone that winds on wearily, and the world is very tired now. 5 It is old and worn and without hope. 6 There was never a question of outcome, for what can change the Will of God? 7 But time, with its illusions of change and death, wears out the world and all things in it. 8 Yet time has an ending, and it is this that the teachers of God are appointed to bring about. 9 For time is in their hands. 10 Such was their choice, and it is given them.
2. WHO ARE THEIR PUPILS?
M-2.1. Certain pupils have been assigned to each of God's teachers, and they will begin to look for him as soon as he has answered the Call. 2 They were chosen for him because the form of the universal curriculum that he will teach is best for them in view of their level of understanding. 3 His pupils have been waiting for him, for his coming is certain. 4 Again, it is only a matter of time. 5 Once he has chosen to fulfill his role, they are ready to fulfill theirs. 6 Time waits on his choice, but not on whom he will serve. 7 When he is ready to learn, the opportunities to teach will be provided for him.
M-2.2. In order to understand the teaching-learning plan of salvation, it is necessary to grasp the concept of time that the course sets forth. 2 Atonement corrects illusions, not truth. 3 Therefore, it corrects what never was. 4 Further, the plan for this correction was established and completed simultaneously, for the Will of God is entirely apart from time. 5 So is all reality, being of Him. 6 The instant the idea of separation entered the mind of God's Son, in that same instant was God's Answer given. 7 In time this happened very long ago. 8 In reality it never happened at all.
M-2.3. The world of time is the world of illusion. 2 What happened long ago seems to be happening now. 3 Choices made long since appear to be open; yet to be made. 4 What has been learned and understood and long ago passed by is looked upon as a new thought, a fresh idea, a different approach. 5 Because your will is free you can accept what has already happened at any time you choose, and only then will you realize that it was always there. 6 As the course emphasizes, you are not free to choose the curriculum, or even the form in which you will learn it. 7 You are free, however, to decide when you want to learn it. 8 And as you accept it, it is already learned.
M-2.4. Time really, then, goes backward to an instant so ancient that it is beyond all memory, and past even the possibility of remembering. 2 Yet because it is an instant that is relived again and again and still again, it seems to be now. 3 And thus it is that pupil and teacher seem to come together in the present, finding each other as if they had not met before. 4 The pupil comes at the right time to the right place. 5 This is inevitable, because he made the right choice in that ancient instant which he now relives. 6 So has the teacher, too, made an inevitable choice out of an ancient past. 7 God's Will in everything but seems to take time in the working-out. 8 What could delay the power of eternity?
M-2.5. When pupil and teacher come together, a teaching-learning situation begins. 2 For the teacher is not really the one who does the teaching. 3 God's Teacher speaks to any two who join together for learning purposes. 4 The relationship is holy because of that purpose, and God has promised to send His Spirit into any holy relationship. 5 In the teaching-learning situation, each one learns that giving and receiving are the same. 6 The demarcations they have drawn between their roles, their minds, their bodies, their needs, their interests, and all the differences they thought separated them from one another, fade and grow dim and disappear. 7 Those who would learn the same course share one interest and one goal. 8 And thus he who was the learner becomes a teacher of God himself, for he has made the one decision that gave his teacher to him. 9 He has seen in another person the same interests as his own.
3. WHAT ARE THE LEVELS OF TEACHING?
M-3.1. The teachers of God have no set teaching level. 2 Each teaching-learning situation involves a different relationship at the beginning, although the ultimate goal is always the same; to make of the relationship a holy relationship, in which both can look upon the Son of God as sinless. 3 There is no one from whom a teacher of God cannot learn, so there is no one whom he cannot teach. 4 However, from a practical point of view he cannot meet everyone, nor can everyone find him. 5 Therefore, the plan includes very specific contacts to be made for each teacher of God. 6 There are no accidents in salvation. 7 Those who are to meet will meet, because together they have the potential for a holy relationship. 8 They are ready for each other.
M-3.2. The simplest level of teaching appears to be quite superficial. 2 It consists of what seem to be very casual encounters; a "chance" meeting of two apparent strangers in an elevator, a child who is not looking where he is going running into an adult "by chance," two students "happening" to walk home together. 3 These are not chance encounters. 4 Each of them has the potential for becoming a teaching-learning situation. 5 Perhaps the seeming strangers in the elevator will smile to one another, perhaps the adult will not scold the child for bumping into him; perhaps the students will become friends. 6 Even at the level of the most casual encounter, it is possible for two people to lose sight of separate interests, if only for a moment. 7 That moment will be enough. 8 Salvation has come.
M-3.3. It is difficult to understand that levels of teaching the universal course is a concept as meaningless in reality as is time. 2 The illusion of one permits the illusion of the other. 3 In time, the teacher of God seems to begin to change his mind about the world with a single decision, and then learns more and more about the new direction as he teaches it. 4 We have covered the illusion of time already, but the illusion of levels of teaching seems to be something different. 5 Perhaps the best way to demonstrate that these levels cannot exist is simply to say that any level of the teaching-learning situation is part of God's plan for Atonement, and His plan can have no levels, being a reflection of His Will. 6 Salvation is always ready and always there. 7 God's teachers work at different levels, but the result is always the same.
M-3.4. Each teaching-learning situation is maximal in the sense that each person involved will learn the most that he can from the other person at that time. 2 In this sense, and in this sense only, we can speak of levels of teaching. 3 Using the term in this way, the second level of teaching is a more sustained relationship, in which, for a time, two people enter into a fairly intense teaching-learning situation and then appear to separate. 4 As with the first level, these meetings are not accidental, nor is what appears to be the end of the relationship a real end. 5 Again, each has learned the most he can at the time. 6 Yet all who meet will someday meet again, for it is the destiny of all relationships to become holy. 7 God is not mistaken in His Son.
M-3.5. The third level of teaching occurs in relationships which, once they are formed, are lifelong. 2 These are teaching-learning situations in which each person is given a chosen learning partner who presents him with unlimited opportunities for learning. 3 These relationships are generally few, because their existence implies that those involved have reached a stage simultaneously in which the teaching-learning balance is actually perfect. 4 This does not mean that they necessarily recognize this; in fact, they generally do not. 5 They may even be quite hostile to each other for some time, and perhaps for life. 6 Yet should they decide to learn it, the perfect lesson is before them and can be learned. 7 And if they decide to learn that lesson, they become the saviors of the teachers who falter and may even seem to fail. 8 No teacher of God can fail to find the Help he needs.
4. WHAT ARE THE CHARACTERISTICS OF GOD'S TEACHERS?
M-4.1. The surface traits of God's teachers are not at all alike. 2 They do not look alike to the body's eyes, they come from vastly different backgrounds, their experiences of the world vary greatly, and their superficial "personalities" are quite distinct. 3 Nor, at the beginning stages of their functioning as teachers of God, have they as yet acquired the deeper characteristics that will establish them as what they are. 4 God gives special gifts to His teachers, because they have a special role in His plan for Atonement. 5 Their specialness is, of course, only temporary; set in time as a means of leading out of time. 6 These special gifts, born in the holy relationship toward which the teaching-learning situation is geared, become characteristic of all teachers of God who have advanced in their own learning. 7 In this respect they are all alike.
M-4.2. All differences among the Sons of God are temporary. 2 Nevertheless, in time it can be said that the advanced teachers of God have the following characteristics:
M-4.I.1. This is the foundation on which their ability to fulfill their function rests. 2 Perception is the result of learning. 3 In fact, perception is learning, because cause and effect are never separated. 4 The teachers of God have trust in the world, because they have learned it is not governed by the laws the world made up. 5 It is governed by a power that is in them but not of them. 6 It is this power that keeps all things safe. 7 It is through this power that the teachers of God look on a forgiven world.
M-4.I.2. When this power has once been experienced, it is impossible to trust one's own petty strength again. 2 Who would attempt to fly with the tiny wings of a sparrow when the mighty power of an eagle has been given him? 3 And who would place his faith in the shabby offerings of the ego when the gifts of God are laid before him? 4 What is it that induces them to make the shift?
A. Development of Trust
M-4.I.A.3. First, they must go through what might be called "a period of undoing." 2 This need not be painful, but it usually is so experienced. 3 It seems as if things are being taken away, and it is rarely understood initially that their lack of value is merely being recognized. 4 How can lack of value be perceived unless the perceiver is in a position where he must see things in a different light? 5 He is not yet at a point at which he can make the shift entirely internally. 6 And so the plan will sometimes call for changes in what seem to be external circumstances. 7 These changes are always helpful. 8 When the teacher of God has learned that much, he goes on to the second stage.
M-4.I.A.4. Next, the teacher of God must go through "a period of sorting out." 2 This is always somewhat difficult because, having learned that the changes in his life are always helpful, he must now decide all things on the basis of whether they increase the helpfulness or hamper it. 3 He will find that many, if not most of the things he valued before will merely hinder his ability to transfer what he has learned to new situations as they arise. 4 Because he has valued what is really valueless, he will not generalize the lesson for fear of loss and sacrifice. 5 It takes great learning to understand that all things, events, encounters and circumstances are helpful. 6 It is only to the extent to which they are helpful that any degree of reality should be accorded them in this world of illusion. 7 The word "value" can apply to nothing else.
M-4.I.A.5. The third stage through which the teacher of God must go can be called "a period of relinquishment." 2 If this is interpreted as giving up the desirable, it will engender enormous conflict. 3 Few teachers of God escape this distress entirely. 4 There is, however, no point in sorting out the valuable from the valueless unless the next obvious step is taken. 5 Therefore, the period of overlap is apt to be one in which the teacher of God feels called upon to sacrifice his own best interests on behalf of truth. 6 He has not realized as yet how wholly impossible such a demand would be. 7 He can learn this only as he actually does give up the valueless. 8 Through this, he learns that where he anticipated grief, he finds a happy lightheartedness instead; where he thought something was asked of him, he finds a gift bestowed on him.
M-4.I.A.6. Now comes "a period of settling down." 2 This is a quiet time, in which the teacher of God rests a while in reasonable peace. 3 Now he consolidates his learning. 4 Now he begins to see the transfer value of what he has learned. 5 Its potential is literally staggering, and the teacher of God is now at the point in his progress at which he sees in it his whole way out. 6 "Give up what you do not want, and keep what you do." 7 How simple is the obvious! 8 And how easy to do! 9 The teacher of God needs this period of respite. 10 He has not yet come as far as he thinks. 11 Yet when he is ready to go on, he goes with mighty companions beside him. 12 Now he rests a while, and gathers them before going on. 13 He will not go on from here alone.
M-4.I.A.7. The next stage is indeed "a period of unsettling." 2 Now must the teacher of God understand that he did not really know what was valuable and what was valueless. 3 All that he really learned so far was that he did not want the valueless, and that he did want the valuable. 4 Yet his own sorting out was meaningless in teaching him the difference. 5 The idea of sacrifice, so central to his own thought system, had made it impossible for him to judge. 6 He thought he learned willingness, but now he sees that he does not know what the willingness is for. 7 And now he must attain a state that may remain impossible to reach for a long, long time. 8 He must learn to lay all judgment aside, and ask only what he really wants in every circumstance. 9 Were not each step in this direction so heavily reinforced, it would be hard indeed!
M-4.I.A.8. And finally, there is "a period of achievement." 2 It is here that learning is consolidated. 3 Now what was seen as merely shadows before become solid gains, to be counted on in all "emergencies" as well as tranquil times. 4 Indeed, the tranquility is their result; the outcome of honest learning, consistency of thought and full transfer. 5 This is the stage of real peace, for here is Heaven's state fully reflected. 6 From here, the way to Heaven is open and easy. 7 In fact, it is here. 8 Who would "go" anywhere, if peace of mind is already complete? 9 And who would seek to change tranquility for something more desirable? 10 What could be more desirable than this?
M-4.II.1. All other traits of God's teachers rest on trust. 2 Once that has been achieved, the others cannot fail to follow. 3 Only the trusting can afford honesty, for only they can see its value. 4 Honesty does not apply only to what you say. 5 The term actually means consistency. 6 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. 7 Such are the truly honest. 8 At no level are they in conflict with themselves. 9 Therefore it is impossible for them to be in conflict with anyone or anything.
M-4.II.2. The peace of mind which the advanced teachers of God experience is largely due to their perfect honesty. 2 It is only the wish to deceive that makes for war. 3 No one at one with himself can even conceive of conflict. 4 Conflict is the inevitable result of self-deception, and self-deception is dishonesty. 5 There is no challenge to a teacher of God. 6 Challenge implies doubt, and the trust on which God's teachers rest secure makes doubt impossible. 7 Therefore they can only succeed. 8 In this, as in all things, they are honest. 9 They can only succeed, because they never do their will alone. 10 They choose for all mankind; for all the world and all things in it; for the unchanging and unchangeable beyond appearances; and for the Son of God and his Creator. 11 How could they not succeed? 12 They choose in perfect honesty, sure of their choice as of themselves.
M-4.III.1. God's teachers do not judge. 2 To judge is to be dishonest, for to judge is to assume a position you do not have. 3 Judgment without self-deception is impossible. 4 Judgment implies that you have been deceived in your brothers. 5 How, then, could you not have been deceived in yourself? 6 Judgment implies a lack of trust, and trust remains the bedrock of the teacher of God's whole thought system. 7 Let this be lost, and all his learning goes. 8 Without judgment are all things equally acceptable, for who could judge otherwise? 9 Without judgment are all men brothers, for who is there who stands apart? 10 Judgment destroys honesty and shatters trust. 11 No teacher of God can judge and hope to learn.
M-4.IV.1. Harm is impossible for God's teachers. 2 They can neither harm nor be harmed. 3 Harm is the outcome of judgment. 4 It is the dishonest act that follows a dishonest thought. 5 It is a verdict of guilt upon a brother, and therefore on oneself. 6 It is the end of peace and the denial of learning. 7 It demonstrates the absence of God's curriculum, and its replacement by insanity. 8 No teacher of God but must learn,--and fairly early in his training,--that harmfulness completely obliterates his function from his awareness. 9 It will make him confused, fearful, angry and suspicious. 10 It will make the Holy Spirit's lessons impossible to learn. 11 Nor can God's Teacher be heard at all, except by those who realize that harm can actually achieve nothing. 12 No gain can come of it.
M-4.IV.2. Therefore, God's teachers are wholly gentle. 2 They need the strength of gentleness, for it is in this that the function of salvation becomes easy. 3 To those who would do harm, it is impossible. 4 To those to whom harm has no meaning, it is merely natural. 5 What choice but this has meaning to the sane? 6 Who chooses hell when he perceives a way to Heaven? 7 And who would choose the weakness that must come from harm in place of the unfailing, all-encompassing and limitless strength of gentleness? 8 The might of God's teachers lies in their gentleness, for they have understood their evil thoughts came neither from God's Son nor his Creator. 9 Thus did they join their thoughts with Him Who is their Source. 10 And so their will, which always was His Own, is free to be itself.
M-4.V.1. Joy is the inevitable result of gentleness. 2 Gentleness means that fear is now impossible, and what could come to interfere with joy? 3 The open hands of gentleness are always filled. 4 The gentle have no pain. 5 They cannot suffer. 6 Why would they not be joyous? 7 They are sure they are beloved and must be safe. 8 Joy goes with gentleness as surely as grief attends attack. 9 God's teachers trust in Him. 10 And they are sure His Teacher goes before them, making sure no harm can come to them. 11 They hold His gifts and follow in His way, because God's Voice directs them in all things. 12 Joy is their song of thanks. 13 And Christ looks down on them in thanks as well. 14 His need of them is just as great as theirs of Him. 15 How joyous it is to share the purpose of salvation!
M-4.VI.1. God's teachers have learned how to be simple. 2 They have no dreams that need defense against the truth. 3 They do not try to make themselves. 4 Their joy comes from their understanding Who created them. 5 And does what God created need defense? 6 No one can become an advanced teacher of God until he fully understands that defenses are but foolish guardians of mad illusions. 7 The more grotesque the dream, the fiercer and more powerful its defenses seem to be. 8 Yet when the teacher of God finally agrees to look past them, he finds that nothing was there. 9 Slowly at first he lets himself be undeceived. 10 But he learns faster as his trust increases. 11 It is not danger that comes when defenses are laid down. 12 It is safety. 13 It is peace. 14 It is joy. 15 And it is God.
M-4.VII.1. The term generosity has special meaning to the teacher of God. 2 It is not the usual meaning of the word; in fact, it is a meaning that must be learned and learned very carefully. 3 Like all the other attributes of God's teachers this one rests ultimately on trust, for without trust no one can be generous in the true sense. 4 To the world, generosity means "giving away" in the sense of "giving up." 5 To the teachers of God, it means giving away in order to keep. 6 This has been emphasized throughout the text and the workbook, but it is perhaps more alien to the thinking of the world than many other ideas in our curriculum. 7 Its greater strangeness lies merely in the obviousness of its reversal of the world's thinking. 8 In the clearest way possible, and at the simplest of levels, the word means the exact opposite to the teachers of God and to the world.
M-4.VII.2. The teacher of God is generous out of Self interest. 2 This does not refer, however, to the self of which the world speaks. 3 The teacher of God does not want anything he cannot give away, because he realizes it would be valueless to him by definition. 4 What would he want it for ? 5 He could only lose because of it. 6 He could not gain. 7 Therefore he does not seek what only he could keep, because that is a guarantee of loss. 8 He does not want to suffer. 9 Why should he ensure himself pain? 10 But he does want to keep for himself all things that are of God, and therefore for His Son. 11 These are the things that belong to him. 12 These he can give away in true generosity, protecting them forever for himself.
M-4.VIII.1. Those who are certain of the outcome can afford to wait, and wait without anxiety. 2 Patience is natural to the teacher of God. 3 All he sees is certain outcome, at a time perhaps unknown to him as yet, but not in doubt. 4 The time will be as right as is the answer. 5 And this is true for everything that happens now or in the future. 6 The past as well held no mistakes; nothing that did not serve to benefit the world, as well as him to whom it seemed to happen. 7 Perhaps it was not understood at the time. 8 Even so, the teacher of God is willing to reconsider all his past decisions, if they are causing pain to anyone. 9 Patience is natural to those who trust. 10 Sure of the ultimate interpretation of all things in time, no outcome already seen or yet to come can cause them fear.
M-4.IX.1. The extent of the teacher of God's faithfulness is the measure of his advancement in the curriculum. 2 Does he still select some aspects of his life to bring to his learning, while keeping others apart? 3 If so, his advancement is limited, and his trust not yet firmly established. 4 Faithfulness is the teacher of God's trust in the Word of God to set all things right; not some, but all. 5 Generally, his faithfulness begins by resting on just some problems, remaining carefully limited for a time. 6 To give up all problems to one Answer is to reverse the thinking of the world entirely. 7 And that alone is faithfulness. 8 Nothing but that really deserves the name. 9 Yet each degree, however small, is worth achieving. 10 Readiness, as the text notes, is not mastery.
M-4.IX.2. True faithfulness, however, does not deviate. 2 Being consistent, it is wholly honest. 3 Being unswerving, it is full of trust. 4 Being based on fearlessness, it is gentle. 5 Being certain, it is joyous. 6 And being confident, it is tolerant. 7 Faithfulness, then, combines in itself the other attributes of God's teachers. 8 It implies acceptance of the Word of God and His definition of His Son. 9 It is to Them that faithfulness in the true sense is always directed. 10 Toward Them it looks, seeking until it finds. 11 Defenselessness attends it naturally, and joy is its condition. 12 And having found, it rests in quiet certainty on that alone to which all faithfulness is due.
M-4.X.1. The centrality of open-mindedness, perhaps the last of the attributes the teacher of God acquires, is easily understood when its relation to forgiveness is recognized. 2 Open-mindedness comes with lack of judgment. 3 As judgment shuts the mind against God's Teacher, so open-mindedness invites Him to come in. 4 As condemnation judges the Son of God as evil, so open-mindedness permits him to be judged by the Voice for God on His behalf. 5 As the projection of guilt upon him would send him to hell, so open-mindedness lets Christ's image be extended to him. 6 Only the open-minded can be at peace, for they alone see reason for it.
M-4.X.2. How do the open-minded forgive? 2 They have let go all things that would prevent forgiveness. 3 They have in truth abandoned the world, and let it be restored to them in newness and in joy so glorious they could never have conceived of such a change. 4 Nothing is now as it was formerly. 5 Nothing but sparkles now which seemed so dull and lifeless before. 6 And above all are all things welcoming, for threat is gone. 7 No clouds remain to hide the face of Christ. 8 Now is the goal achieved. 9 Forgiveness is the final goal of the curriculum. 10 It paves the way for what goes far beyond all learning. 11 The curriculum makes no effort to exceed its legitimate goal. 12 Forgiveness is its single aim, at which all learning ultimately converges. 13 It is indeed enough.
M-4.X.3. You may have noticed that the list of attributes of God's teachers does not include things that are the Son of God's inheritance. 2 Terms like love, sinlessness, perfection, knowledge and eternal truth do not appear in this context. 3 They would be most inappropriate here. 4 What God has given is so far beyond our curriculum that learning but disappears in its presence. 5 Yet while its presence is obscured, the focus properly belongs on the curriculum. 6 It is the function of God's teachers to bring true learning to the world. 7 Properly speaking it is unlearning that they bring, for that is "true learning" in the world. 8 It is given to the teachers of God to bring the glad tidings of complete forgiveness to the world. 9 Blessed indeed are they, for they are the bringers of salvation.
5. HOW IS HEALING ACCOMPLISHED?
M-5.1. Healing involves an understanding of what the illusion of sickness is for. 2 Healing is impossible without this.
I. The Perceived Purpose of Sickness
M-5.I.1. Healing is accomplished the instant the sufferer no longer sees any value in pain. 2 Who would choose suffering unless he thought it brought him something, and something of value to him? 3 He must think it is a small price to pay for something of greater worth. 4 For sickness is an election; a decision. 5 It is the choice of weakness, in the mistaken conviction that it is strength. 6 When this occurs, real strength is seen as threat and health as danger. 7 Sickness is a method, conceived in madness, for placing God's Son on his Father's throne. 8 God is seen as outside, fierce and powerful, eager to keep all power for Himself. 9 Only by His death can He be conquered by His Son.
M-5.I.2. And what, in this insane conviction, does healing stand for? 2 It symbolizes the defeat of God's Son and the triumph of his Father over him. 3 It represents the ultimate defiance in a direct form which the Son of God is forced to recognize. 4 It stands for all that he would hide from himself to protect his "life." 5 If he is healed, he is responsible for his thoughts. 6 And if he is responsible for his thoughts, he will be killed to prove to him how weak and pitiful he is. 7 But if he chooses death himself, his weakness is his strength. 8 Now has he given himself what God would give to him, and thus entirely usurped the throne of his Creator.
II. The Shift in Perception
M-5.II.1. Healing must occur in exact proportion to which the valuelessness of sickness is recognized. 2 One need but say, "There is no gain at all to me in this" and he is healed. 3 But to say this, one first must recognize certain facts. 4 First, it is obvious that decisions are of the mind, not of the body. 5 If sickness is but a faulty problem-solving approach, it is a decision. 6 And if it is a decision, it is the mind and not the body that makes it. 7 The resistance to recognizing this is enormous, because the existence of the world as you perceive it depends on the body being the decision maker. 8 Terms like "instincts," "reflexes" and the like represent attempts to endow the body with non-mental motivators. 9 Actually, such terms merely state or describe the problem. 10 They do not answer it.
M-5.II.2. The acceptance of sickness as a decision of the mind, for a purpose for which it would use the body, is the basis of healing. 2 And this is so for healing in all forms. 3 A patient decides that this is so, and he recovers. 4 If he decides against recovery, he will not be healed. 5 Who is the physician? 6 Only the mind of the patient himself. 7 The outcome is what he decides that it is. 8 Special agents seem to be ministering to him, yet they but give form to his own choice. 9 He chooses them in order to bring tangible form to his desires. 10 And it is this they do, and nothing else. 11 They are not actually needed at all. 12 The patient could merely rise up without their aid and say, "I have no use for this." 13 There is no form of sickness that would not be cured at once.
M-5.II.3. What is the single requisite for this shift in perception? 2 It is simply this; the recognition that sickness is of the mind, and has nothing to do with the body. 3 What does this recognition "cost"? 4 It costs the whole world you see, for the world will never again appear to rule the mind. 5 For with this recognition is responsibility placed where it belongs; not with the world, but on him who looks on the world and sees it as it is not. 6 He looks on what he chooses to see. 7 No more and no less. 8 The world does nothing to him. 9 He only thought it did. 10 Nor does he do anything to the world, because he was mistaken about what it is. 11 Herein is the release from guilt and sickness both, for they are one. 12 Yet to accept this release, the insignificance of the body must be an acceptable idea.
M-5.II.4. With this idea is pain forever gone. 2 But with this idea goes also all confusion about creation. 3 Does not this follow of necessity? 4 Place cause and effect in their true sequence in one respect, and the learning will generalize and transform the world. 5 The transfer value of one true idea has no end or limit. 6 The final outcome of this lesson is the remembrance of God. 7 What do guilt and sickness, pain, disaster and all suffering mean now? 8 Having no purpose, they are gone. 9 And with them also go all the effects they seemed to cause. 10 Cause and effect but replicate creation. 11 Seen in their proper perspective, without distortion and without fear, they re-establish Heaven.
III. The Function of the Teacher of God
M-5.III.1. If the patient must change his mind in order to be healed, what does the teacher of God do? 2 Can he change the patient's mind for him? 3 Certainly not. 4 For those already willing to change their minds he has no function except to rejoice with them, for they have become teachers of God with him. 5 He has, however, a more specific function for those who do not understand what healing is. 6 These patients do not realize they have chosen sickness. 7 On the contrary, they believe that sickness has chosen them. 8 Nor are they open-minded on this point. 9 The body tells them what to do and they obey. 10 They have no idea how insane this concept is. 11 If they even suspected it, they would be healed. 12 Yet they suspect nothing. 13 To them the separation is quite real.
M-5.III.2. To them God's teachers come, to represent another choice which they had forgotten. 2 The simple presence of a teacher of God is a reminder. 3 His thoughts ask for the right to question what the patient has accepted as true. 4 As God's messengers, His teachers are the symbols of salvation. 5 They ask the patient for forgiveness for God's Son in his own Name. 6 They stand for the Alternative. 7 With God's Word in their minds they come in benediction, not to heal the sick but to remind them of the remedy God has already given them. 8 It is not their hands that heal. 9 It is not their voice that speaks the Word of God. 10 They merely give what has been given them. 11 Very gently they call to their brothers to turn away from death: "Behold, you Son of God, what life can offer you. 12 Would you choose sickness in place of this?"
M-5.III.3. Not once do the advanced teachers of God consider the forms of sickness in which their brother believes. 2 To do this is to forget that all of them have the same purpose, and therefore are not really different. 3 They seek for God's Voice in this brother who would so deceive himself as to believe God's Son can suffer. 4 And they remind him that he did not make himself, and must remain as God created him. 5 They recognize illusions can have no effect. 6 The truth in their minds reaches out to the truth in the minds of their brothers, so that illusions are not reinforced. 7 They are thus brought to truth; truth is not brought to them. 8 So are they dispelled, not by the will of another, but by the union of the one Will with itself. 9 And this is the function of God's teachers; to see no will as separate from their own, nor theirs as separate from God's.
6. IS HEALING CERTAIN?
M-6.1. Healing is always certain. 2 It is impossible to let illusions be brought to truth and keep the illusions. 3 Truth demonstrates illusions have no value. 4 The teacher of God has seen the correction of his errors in the mind of the patient, recognizing it for what it is. 5 Having accepted the Atonement for himself, he has also accepted it for the patient. 6 Yet what if the patient uses sickness as a way of life, believing healing is the way to death? 7 When this is so, a sudden healing might precipitate intense depression, and a sense of loss so deep that the patient might even try to destroy himself. 8 Having nothing to live for, he may ask for death. 9 Healing must wait, for his protection.
M-6.2. Healing will always stand aside when it would be seen as threat. 2 The instant it is welcome it is there. 3 Where healing has been given it will be received. 4 And what is time before the gifts of God? 5 We have referred many times in the text to the storehouse of treasures laid up equally for the giver and the receiver of God's gifts. 6 Not one is lost, for they can but increase. 7 No teacher of God should feel disappointed if he has offered healing and it does not appear to have been received. 8 It is not up to him to judge when his gift should be accepted. 9 Let him be certain it has been received, and trust that it will be accepted when it is recognized as a blessing and not a curse.
M-6.3. It is not the function of God's teachers to evaluate the outcome of their gifts. 2 It is merely their function to give them. 3 Once they have done that they have also given the outcome, for that is part of the gift. 4 No one can give if he is concerned with the result of giving. 5 That is a limitation on the giving itself, and neither the giver nor the receiver would have the gift. 6 Trust is an essential part of giving; in fact, it is the part that makes sharing possible, the part that guarantees the giver will not lose, but only gain. 7 Who gives a gift and then remains with it, to be sure it is used as the giver deems appropriate? 8 Such is not giving but imprisoning.
M-6.4. It is the relinquishing of all concern about the gift that makes it truly given. 2 And it is trust that makes true giving possible. 3 Healing is the change of mind that the Holy Spirit in the patient's mind is seeking for him. 4 And it is the Holy Spirit in the mind of the giver Who gives the gift to him. 5 How can it be lost ? 6 How can it be ineffectual? 7 How can it be wasted? 8 God's treasure house can never be empty. 9 And if one gift is missing, it would not be full. 10 Yet is its fullness guaranteed by God. 11 What concern, then, can a teacher of God have about what becomes of his gifts? 12 Given by God to God, who in this holy exchange can receive less than everything?
7. SHOULD HEALING BE REPEATED?
M-7.1. This question really answers itself. 2 Healing cannot be repeated. 3 If the patient is healed, what remains to heal him from? 4 And if the healing is certain, as we have already said it is, what is there to repeat? 5 For a teacher of God to remain concerned about the result of healing is to limit the healing. 6 It is now the teacher of God himself whose mind needs to be healed. 7 And it is this he must facilitate. 8 He is now the patient, and he must so regard himself. 9 He has made a mistake, and must be willing to change his mind about it. 10 He lacked the trust that makes for giving truly, and so he has not received the benefit of his gift.
M-7.2. Whenever a teacher of God has tried to be a channel for healing he has succeeded. 2 Should he be tempted to doubt this, he should not repeat his previous effort. 3 That was already maximal, because the Holy Spirit so accepted it and so used it. 4 Now the teacher of God has only one course to follow. 5 He must use his reason to tell himself that he has given the problem to One Who cannot fail, and must recognize that his own uncertainty is not love but fear, and therefore hate. 6 His position has thus become untenable, for he is offering hate to one to whom he offered love. 7 This is impossible. 8 Having offered love, only love can be received.
M-7.3. It is in this that the teacher of God must trust. 2 This is what is really meant by the statement that the one responsibility of the miracle worker is to accept the Atonement for himself. 3 The teacher of God is a miracle worker because he gives the gifts he has received. 4 Yet he must first accept them. 5 He need do no more, nor is there more that he could do. 6 By accepting healing he can give it. 7 If he doubts this, let him remember Who gave the gift and Who received it. 8 Thus is his doubt corrected. 9 He thought the gifts of God could be withdrawn. 10 That was a mistake, but hardly one to stay with. 11 And so the teacher of God can only recognize it for what it is, and let it be corrected for him.
M-7.4. One of the most difficult temptations to recognize is that to doubt a healing because of the appearance of continuing symptoms is a mistake in the form of lack of trust. 2 As such it is an attack. 3 Usually it seems to be just the opposite. 4 It does appear unreasonable at first to be told that continued concern is attack. 5 It has all the appearances of love. 6 Yet love without trust is impossible, and doubt and trust cannot coexist. 7 And hate must be the opposite of love, regardless of the form it takes. 8 Doubt not the gift and it is impossible to doubt its result. 9 This is the certainty that gives God's teachers the power to be miracle workers, for they have put their trust in Him.
M-7.5. The real basis for doubt about the outcome of any problem that has been given to God's Teacher for resolution is always self-doubt. 2 And that necessarily implies that trust has been placed in an illusory self, for only such a self can be doubted. 3 This illusion can take many forms. 4 Perhaps there is a fear of weakness and vulnerability. 5 Perhaps there is a fear of failure and shame associated with a sense of inadequacy. 6 Perhaps there is a guilty embarrassment stemming from false humility. 7 The form of the mistake is not important. 8 What is important is only the recognition of a mistake as a mistake.
M-7.6. The mistake is always some form of concern with the self to the exclusion of the patient. 2 It is a failure to recognize him as part of the Self, and thus represents a confusion in identity. 3 Conflict about what you are has entered your mind, and you have become deceived about yourself. 4 And you are deceived about yourself because you have denied the Source of your creation. 5 If you are offering only healing, you cannot doubt. 6 If you really want the problem solved, you cannot doubt. 7 If you are certain what the problem is, you cannot doubt. 8 Doubt is the result of conflicting wishes. 9 Be sure of what you want, and doubt becomes impossible.
8. HOW CAN PERCEPTION OF ORDER OF DIFFICULTIES BE AVOIDED?
M-8.1. The belief in order of difficulties is the basis for the world's perception. 2 It rests on differences; on uneven background and shifting foreground, on unequal heights and diverse sizes, on varying degrees of darkness and light, and thousands of contrasts in which each thing seen competes with every other in order to be recognized. 3 A larger object overshadows a smaller one. 4 A brighter thing draws the attention from another with less intensity of appeal. 5 And a more threatening idea, or one conceived of as more desirable by the world's standards, completely upsets the mental balance. 6 What the body's eyes behold is only conflict. 7 Look not to them for peace and understanding.
M-8.2. Illusions are always illusions of differences. 2 How could it be otherwise? 3 By definition, an illusion is an attempt to make something real that is regarded as of major importance, but is recognized as being untrue. 4 The mind therefore seeks to make it true out of its intensity of desire to have it for itself. 5 Illusions are travesties of creation; attempts to bring truth to lies. 6 Finding truth unacceptable, the mind revolts against truth and gives itself an illusion of victory. 7 Finding health a burden, it retreats into feverish dreams. 8 And in these dreams the mind is separate, different from other minds, with different interests of its own, and able to gratify its needs at the expense of others.
M-8.3. Where do all these differences come from? 2 Certainly they seem to be in the world outside. 3 Yet it is surely the mind that judges what the eyes behold. 4 It is the mind that interprets the eyes' messages and gives them "meaning." 5 And this meaning does not exist in the world outside at all. 6 What is seen as "reality" is simply what the mind prefers. 7 Its hierarchy of values is projected outward, and it sends the body's eyes to find it. 8 The body's eyes will never see except through differences. 9 Yet it is not the messages they bring on which perception rests. 10 Only the mind evaluates their messages, and so only the mind is responsible for seeing. 11 It alone decides whether what is seen is real or illusory, desirable or undesirable, pleasurable or painful.
M-8.4. It is in the sorting out and categorizing activities of the mind that errors in perception enter. 2 And it is here correction must be made. 3 The mind classifies what the body's eyes bring to it according to its preconceived values, judging where each sense datum fits best. 4 What basis could be faultier than this? 5 Unrecognized by itself, it has itself asked to be given what will fit into these categories. 6 And having done so, it concludes that the categories must be true. 7 On this the judgment of all differences rests, because it is on this that judgments of the world depend. 8 Can this confused and senseless "reasoning" be depended on for anything?
M-8.5. There can be no order of difficulty in healing merely because all sickness is illusion. 2 Is it harder to dispel the belief of the insane in a larger hallucination as opposed to a smaller one? 3 Will he agree more quickly to the unreality of a louder voice he hears than to that of a softer one? 4 Will he dismiss more easily a whispered demand to kill than a shout? 5 And do the number of pitchforks the devils he sees carrying affect their credibility in his perception? 6 His mind has categorized them all as real, and so they are all real to him. 7 When he realizes they are all illusions they will disappear. 8 And so it is with healing. 9 The properties of illusions which seem to make them different are really irrelevant, for their properties are as illusory as they are.
M-8.6. The body's eyes will continue to see differences. 2 But the mind that has let itself be healed will no longer acknowledge them. 3 There will be those who seem to be "sicker" than others, and the body's eyes will report their changed appearances as before. 4 But the healed mind will put them all in one category; they are unreal. 5 This is the gift of its Teacher; the understanding that only two categories are meaningful in sorting out the messages the mind receives from what appears to be the outside world. 6 And of these two, but one is real. 7 Just as reality is wholly real, apart from size and shape and time and place--for differences cannot exist within it--so too are illusions without distinctions. 8 The one answer to sickness of any kind is healing. 9 The one answer to all illusions is truth.
9. ARE CHANGES REQUIRED IN THE LIFE SITUATION OF GOD'S TEACHERS?
M-9.1. Changes are required in the minds of God's teachers. 2 This may or may not involve changes in the external situation. 3 Remember that no one is where he is by accident, and chance plays no part in God's plan. 4 It is most unlikely that changes in attitudes would not be the first step in the newly made teacher of God's training. 5 There is, however, no set pattern, since training is always highly individualized. 6 There are those who are called upon to change their life situation almost immediately, but these are generally special cases. 7 By far the majority are given a slowly evolving training program, in which as many previous mistakes as possible are corrected. 8 Relationships in particular must be properly perceived, and all dark cornerstones of unforgiveness removed. 9 Otherwise the old thought system still has a basis for return.
M-9.2. As the teacher of God advances in his training, he learns one lesson with increasing thoroughness. 2 He does not make his own decisions; he asks his Teacher for His answer, and it is this he follows as his guide for action. 3 This becomes easier and easier, as the teacher of God learns to give up his own judgment. 4 The giving up of judgment, the obvious prerequisite for hearing God's Voice, is usually a fairly slow process, not because it is difficult, but because it is apt to be perceived as personally insulting. 5 The world's training is directed toward achieving a goal in direct opposition to that of our curriculum. 6 The world trains for reliance on one's judgment as the criterion for maturity and strength. 7 Our curriculum trains for the relinquishment of judgment as the necessary condition of salvation.
10. HOW IS JUDGMENT RELINQUISHED?
M-10.1. Judgment, like other devices by which the world of illusions is maintained, is totally misunderstood by the world. 2 It is actually confused with wisdom, and substitutes for truth. 3 As the world uses the term, an individual is capable of "good" and "bad" judgment, and his education aims at strengthening the former and minimizing the latter. 4 There is, however, considerable confusion about what these categories mean. 5 What is "good" judgment to one is "bad" judgment to another. 6 Further, even the same person classifies the same action as showing "good" judgment at one time and "bad" judgment at another time. 7 Nor can any consistent criteria for determining what these categories are be really taught. 8 At any time the student may disagree with what his would-be teacher says about them, and the teacher himself may well be inconsistent in what he believes. 9 "Good" judgment, in these terms, does not mean anything. 10 No more does "bad."
M-10.2. It is necessary for the teacher of God to realize, not that he should not judge, but that he cannot. 2 In giving up judgment, he is merely giving up what he did not have. 3 He gives up an illusion; or better, he has an illusion of giving up. 4 He has actually merely become more honest. 5 Recognizing that judgment was always impossible for him, he no longer attempts it. 6 This is no sacrifice. 7 On the contrary, he puts himself in a position where judgment through him rather than by him can occur. 8 And this judgment is neither "good" nor "bad." 9 It is the only judgment there is, and it is only one: "God's Son is guiltless, and sin does not exist."
M-10.3. The aim of our curriculum, unlike the goal of the world's learning, is the recognition that judgment in the usual sense is impossible. 2 This is not an opinion but a fact. 3 In order to judge anything rightly, one would have to be fully aware of an inconceivably wide range of things; past, present and to come. 4 One would have to recognize in advance all the effects of his judgments on everyone and everything involved in them in any way. 5 And one would have to be certain there is no distortion in his perception, so that his judgment would be wholly fair to everyone on whom it rests now and in the future. 6 Who is in a position to do this? 7 Who except in grandiose fantasies would claim this for himself?
M-10.4. Remember how many times you thought you knew all the "facts" you needed for judgment, and how wrong you were! 2 Is there anyone who has not had this experience? 3 Would you know how many times you merely thought you were right, without ever realizing you were wrong? 4 Why would you choose such an arbitrary basis for decision making? 5 Wisdom is not judgment; it is the relinquishment of judgment. 6 Make then but one more judgment. 7 It is this: There is Someone with you Whose judgment is perfect. 8 He does know all the facts; past, present and to come. 9 He does know all the effects of His judgment on everyone and everything involved in any way. 10 And He is wholly fair to everyone, for there is no distortion in His perception.
M-10.5. Therefore lay judgment down, not with regret but with a sigh of gratitude. 2 Now are you free of a burden so great that you could merely stagger and fall down beneath it. 3 And it was all illusion. 4 Nothing more. 5 Now can the teacher of God rise up unburdened, and walk lightly on. 6 Yet it is not only this that is his benefit. 7 His sense of care is gone, for he has none. 8 He has given it away, along with judgment. 9 He gave himself to Him Whose judgment he has chosen now to trust, instead of his own. 10 Now he makes no mistakes. 11 His Guide is sure. 12 And where he came to judge, he comes to bless. 13 Where now he laughs, he used to come to weep.
M-10.6. It is not difficult to relinquish judgment. 2 But it is difficult indeed to try to keep it. 3 The teacher of God lays it down happily the instant he recognizes its cost. 4 All of the ugliness he sees about him is its outcome. 5 All of the pain he looks upon is its result. 6 All of the loneliness and sense of loss; of passing time and growing hopelessness; of sickening despair and fear of death; all these have come of it. 7 And now he knows that these things need not be. 8 Not one is true. 9 For he has given up their cause, and they, which never were but the effects of his mistaken choice, have fallen from him. 10 Teacher of God, this step will bring you peace. 11 Can it be difficult to want but this?
11. HOW IS PEACE POSSIBLE IN THIS WORLD?
M-11.1. This is a question everyone must ask. 2 Certainly peace seems to be impossible here. 3 Yet the Word of God promises other things that seem impossible, as well as this. 4 His Word has promised peace. 5 It has also promised that there is no death, that resurrection must occur, and that rebirth is man's inheritance. 6 The world you see cannot be the world God loves, and yet His Word assures us that He loves the world. 7 God's Word has promised that peace is possible here, and what He promises can hardly be impossible. 8 But it is true that the world must be looked at differently, if His promises are to be accepted. 9 What the world is, is but a fact. 10 You cannot choose what this should be. 11 But you can choose how you would see it. 12 Indeed, you must choose this.
M-11.2. Again we come to the question of judgment. 2 This time ask yourself whether your judgment or the Word of God is more likely to be true. 3 For they say different things about the world, and things so opposite that it is pointless to try to reconcile them. 4 God offers the world salvation; your judgment would condemn it. 5 God says there is no death; your judgment sees but death as the inevitable end of life. 6 God's Word assures you that He loves the world; your judgment says it is unlovable. 7 Who is right? 8 For one of you is wrong. 9 It must be so.
M-11.3. The text explains that the Holy Spirit is the Answer to all problems you have made. 2 These problems are not real, but that is meaningless to those who believe in them. 3 And everyone believes in what he made, for it was made by his believing it. 4 Into this strange and paradoxical situation,--one without meaning and devoid of sense, yet out of which no way seems possible,--God has sent His Judgment to answer yours. 5 Gently His Judgment substitutes for yours. 6 And through this substitution is the un-understandable made understandable. 7 How is peace possible in this world? 8 In your judgment it is not possible, and can never be possible. 9 But in the Judgment of God what is reflected here is only peace.
M-11.4. Peace is impossible to those who look on war. 2 Peace is inevitable to those who offer peace. 3 How easily, then, is your judgment of the world escaped! 4 It is not the world that makes peace seem impossible. 5 It is the world you see that is impossible. 6 Yet has God's Judgment on this distorted world redeemed it and made it fit to welcome peace. 7 And peace descends on it in joyous answer. 8 Peace now belongs here, because a Thought of God has entered. 9 What else but a Thought of God turns hell to Heaven merely by being what it is? 10 The earth bows down before its gracious Presence, and it leans down in answer, to raise it up again. 11 Now is the question different. 12 It is no longer, "Can peace be possible in this world?" but instead, "Is it not impossible that peace be absent here?"
12. HOW MANY TEACHERS OF GOD ARE NEEDED TO SAVE THE WORLD?
M-12.1. The answer to this question is--one. 2 One wholly perfect teacher, whose learning is complete, suffices. 3 This one, sanctified and redeemed, becomes the Self Who is the Son of God. 4 He who was always wholly spirit now no longer sees himself as a body, or even as in a body. 5 Therefore he is limitless. 6 And being limitless, his thoughts are joined with God's forever and ever. 7 His perception of himself is based upon God's Judgment, not his own. 8 Thus does he share God's Will, and bring His Thoughts to still deluded minds. 9 He is forever one, because he is as God created him. 10 He has accepted Christ, and he is saved.
M-12.2. Thus does the son of man become the Son of God. 2 It is not really a change; it is a change of mind. 3 Nothing external alters, but everything internal now reflects only the Love of God. 4 God can no longer be feared, for the mind sees no cause for punishment. 5 God's teachers appear to be many, for that is what is the world's need. 6 Yet being joined in one purpose, and one they share with God, how could they be separate from each other? 7 What does it matter if they then appear in many forms? 8 Their minds are one; their joining is complete. 9 And God works through them now as one, for that is what they are.
M-12.3. Why is the illusion of many necessary? 2 Only because reality is not understandable to the deluded. 3 Only very few can hear God's Voice at all, and even they cannot communicate His messages directly through the Spirit which gave them. 4 They need a medium through which communication becomes possible to those who do not realize that they are spirit. 5 A body they can see. 6 A voice they understand and listen to, without the fear that truth would encounter in them. 7 Do not forget that truth can come only where it is welcomed without fear. 8 So do God's teachers need a body, for their unity could not be recognized directly.
M-12.4. Yet what makes God's teachers is their recognition of the proper purpose of the body. 2 As they advance in their profession, they become more and more certain that the body's function is but to let God's Voice speak through it to human ears. 3 And these ears will carry to the mind of the hearer messages that are not of this world, and the mind will understand because of their Source. 4 From this understanding will come the recognition, in this new teacher of God, of what the body's purpose really is; the only use there really is for it. 5 This lesson is enough to let the thought of unity come in, and what is one is recognized as one. 6 The teachers of God appear to share the illusion of separation, but because of what they use the body for, they do not believe in the illusion despite appearances.
M-12.5. The central lesson is always this; that what you use the body for it will become to you. 2 Use it for sin or for attack, which is the same as sin, and you will see it as sinful. 3 Because it is sinful it is weak, and being weak, it suffers and it dies. 4 Use it to bring the Word of God to those who have it not, and the body becomes holy. 5 Because it is holy it cannot be sick, nor can it die. 6 When its usefulness is done it is laid by, and that is all. 7 The mind makes this decision, as it makes all decisions that are responsible for the body's condition. 8 Yet the teacher of God does not make this decision alone. 9 To do that would be to give the body another purpose from the one that keeps it holy. 10 God's Voice will tell him when he has fulfilled his role, just as It tells him what his function is. 11 He does not suffer either in going or remaining. 12 Sickness is now impossible to him.
M-12.6. Oneness and sickness cannot coexist. 2 God's teachers choose to look on dreams a while. 3 It is a conscious choice. 4 For they have learned that all choices are made consciously, with full awareness of their consequences. 5 The dream says otherwise, but who would put his faith in dreams once they are recognized for what they are? 6 Awareness of dreaming is the real function of God's teachers. 7 They watch the dream figures come and go, shift and change, suffer and die. 8 Yet they are not deceived by what they see. 9 They recognize that to behold a dream figure as sick and separate is no more real than to regard it as healthy and beautiful. 10 Unity alone is not a thing of dreams. 11 And it is this God's teachers acknowledge as behind the dream, beyond all seeming and yet surely theirs.
13. WHAT IS THE REAL MEANING OF SACRIFICE?
M-13.1. Although in truth the term sacrifice is altogether meaningless, it does have meaning in the world. 2 Like all things in the world, its meaning is temporary and will ultimately fade into the nothingness from which it came when there is no more use for it. 3 Now its real meaning is a lesson. 4 Like all lessons it is an illusion, for in reality there is nothing to learn. 5 Yet this illusion must be replaced by a corrective device; another illusion that replaces the first, so both can finally disappear. 6 The first illusion, which must be displaced before another thought system can take hold, is that it is a sacrifice to give up the things of this world. 7 What could this be but an illusion, since this world itself is nothing more than that?
M-13.2. It takes great learning both to realize and to accept the fact that the world has nothing to give. 2 What can the sacrifice of nothing mean? 3 It cannot mean that you have less because of it. 4 There is no sacrifice in the world's terms that does not involve the body. 5 Think a while about what the world calls sacrifice. 6 Power, fame, money, physical pleasure; who is the "hero" to whom all these things belong? 7 Could they mean anything except to a body? 8 Yet a body cannot evaluate. 9 By seeking after such things the mind associates itself with the body, obscuring its Identity and losing sight of what it really is.
M-13.3. Once this confusion has occurred, it becomes impossible for the mind to understand that all the "pleasures" of the world are nothing. 2 But what a sacrifice,--and it is sacrifice indeed!--all this entails. 3 Now has the mind condemned itself to seek without finding; to be forever dissatisfied and discontented; to know not what it really wants to find. 4 Who can escape this self-condemnation? 5 Only through God's Word could this be possible. 6 For self-condemnation is a decision about identity, and no one doubts what he believes he is. 7 He can doubt all things, but never this.
M-13.4. God's teachers can have no regret on giving up the pleasures of the world. 2 Is it a sacrifice to give up pain? 3 Does an adult resent the giving up of children's toys? 4 Does one whose vision has already glimpsed the face of Christ look back with longing on a slaughter house? 5 No one who has escaped the world and all its ills looks back on it with condemnation. 6 Yet he must rejoice that he is free of all the sacrifice its values would demand of him. 7 To them he sacrifices all his peace. 8 To them he sacrifices all his freedom. 9 And to possess them must he sacrifice his hope of Heaven and remembrance of his Father's Love. 10 Who in his sane mind chooses nothing as a substitute for everything?
M-13.5. What is the real meaning of sacrifice? 2 It is the cost of believing in illusions. 3 It is the price that must be paid for the denial of truth. 4 There is no pleasure of the world that does not demand this, for otherwise the pleasure would be seen as pain, and no one asks for pain if he recognizes it. 5 It is the idea of sacrifice that makes him blind. 6 He does not see what he is asking for. 7 And so he seeks it in a thousand ways and in a thousand places, each time believing it is there, and each time disappointed in the end. 8 "Seek but do not find" remains this world's stern decree, and no one who pursues the world's goals can do otherwise.
M-13.6. You may believe this course requires sacrifice of all you really hold dear. 2 In one sense this is true, for you hold dear the things that crucify God's Son, and it is the course's aim to set him free. 3 But do not be mistaken about what sacrifice means. 4 It always means the giving up of what you want. 5 And what, O teacher of God, is it that you want? 6 You have been called by God, and you have answered. 7 Would you now sacrifice that Call? 8 Few have heard it as yet, and they can but turn to you. 9 There is no other hope in all the world that they can trust. 10 There is no other voice in all the world that echoes God's. 11 If you would sacrifice the truth, they stay in hell. 12 And if they stay, you will remain with them.
M-13.7. Do not forget that sacrifice is total. 2 There are no half sacrifices. 3 You cannot give up Heaven partially. 4 You cannot be a little bit in hell. 5 The Word of God has no exceptions. 6 It is this that makes it holy and beyond the world. 7 It is its holiness that points to God. 8 It is its holiness that makes you safe. 9 It is denied if you attack any brother for anything. 10 For it is here the split with God occurs. 11 A split that is impossible. 12 A split that cannot happen. 13 Yet a split in which you surely will believe, because you have set up a situation that is impossible. 14 And in this situation the impossible can seem to happen. 15 It seems to happen at the "sacrifice" of truth.
M-13.8. Teacher of God, do not forget the meaning of sacrifice, and remember what each decision you make must mean in terms of cost. 2 Decide for God, and everything is given you at no cost at all. 3 Decide against Him, and you choose nothing, at the expense of the awareness of everything. 4 What would you teach? 5 Remember only what you would learn. 6 For it is here that your concern should be. 7 Atonement is for you. 8 Your learning claims it and your learning gives it. 9 The world contains it not. 10 But learn this course and it is yours. 11 God holds out His Word to you, for He has need of teachers. 12 What other way is there to save His Son?