[Please note: ACIM passages quoted in this article reference the Foundation for Inner Peace (FIP) Edition.]
Like a traditional spiritual healer:
You come to someone who has been afflicted by some illness and attempt to be a channel of healing, in the hopes that the patient will experience the healing of both body and mind. You appear to be a person of special power and virtue, who comes to one apparently lacking in these things, one who is separate from you, imprisoned behind “a solid wall of sickened flesh” (W-pI.137.2:3). You approach this particular disease, which seems to have a certain level of severity. You use words, perhaps even your hands. You invoke the name of Jesus. Something seems to pass from you to the patient. And the patient is healed.
Your job is to engage in this traditional form while overlooking the reality of every single aspect of it.
|Traditional spiritual healing
It appears that your goal is to heal the body.
|Course-based spiritual healing
You goal is not to heal the body. You instead overlook the body’s infirmities, its importance, even its existence.
|It appears that your job is to direct “spiritual” energy at the body in order to heal it.||You do not direct any energy at the body. You extend true perception, Christ’s vision, to the patient’s mind. This is what heals.|
|Your job seems to be to use your hands, words, and gestures to invoke and transmit this energy.||You may use your hands, words, and gestures, but you do not see these as having any inherent power. You see them merely as vehicles for communicating true perception, which is the real healing agent.|
|You may call on various divine beings, believing that their names carry spiritual power.||You may invoke the name of Jesus Christ, but you do not see magical power in this name. You merely realize that Jesus is ever-present, is available for help, and can give so much more than you can without his aid.|
|You realize that your job is also to help heal something sick inside the patient’s mind or soul.||Your goal is to heal his mind’s sick beliefs, yet you look past even these. You see past them to the mind’s inherent perfection.|
|The basis for all of your efforts–indeed, the reason you are there–is that the patient is actually sick.||You do not see the patient as sick, as having something wrong with him, as full of problems and sins. You see him as a perfect and whole Son of God, who remains as God created him.|
|Your goal is somehow to change the patient from being sick to being well.||Your goal is not to change the patient. It is to acknowledge the changeless Christ he has always been.|
|You have an “involuntary” emotional response to the larger diseases, the ones you know are harder to heal.||You do not regard the kind or severity of the disease as having any relevance. You see all diseases, no matter how serious, as equally illusory and equally easy to heal.|
|Part of your role may be to understand the physical causes for this particular disease.||Your role is not to understand the physical causes, but to understand the reasons that the ego chooses any disease.|
|Your heart goes out to your patient, who you see as being victimized by this unsought illness.||Rather than seeing him as victimized by outside forces, you see him as choosing his illness for a purpose of his ego. You realize that this illness is a call for love.|
|You take for granted that your patient, having invited you, wants to be healed.||You take for granted that even though the patient has invited you and wants a symptom cure, he is actually afraid of true healing.|
|You secretly see yourself as a superior person of special power and virtue coming to an inferior sick-person.||Though you may have currently realized something your patient has not, you see you and your patient as true equals.|
|In your mind you believe that you are giving something to the patient from outside of him, some kind of wholeness or health he lacks.||You realize that you are merely helping the patient acknowledge the wholeness that is eternally within him.|
|The patient is clearly a separate entity, suffering something that others are not.||You see the patient as one with you, knowing that beneath appearances you and he share the same Self.|
|You see the healing as something that passes from you to the patient.
|You realize he is healed not by your will, but by “the union of the One Will with Itself” (M-5.III.3:8)|
|You, of course, see yourself as the healer.||You know that you are not the healer, but a mere instrument of the true Healer, the Holy Spirit, Who moves as one within both healer and patient.|
|You see yourself as the one in charge, the one who must decide on a treatment, and the one responsible for the outcome.|
|You realize that the Holy Spirit is in charge. He must select the specific treatment, and He is the One responsible for the outcome.Because so much rides on you, you find yourself doubting your ability to heal and obsessing about your inadequacies.||Because you don’t rely on yourself, you never doubt the omnipotence of the Power in you and Its ability to heal all sickness.|
|If the patient’s symptoms continue, you inwardly judge him for not properly receiving the healing you gave.||You realize that you can trust the patient. He did receive all of what you gave, and will someday accept it into his conscious experience.|
|You feel far more able to give healing than to embody it in your own life. Therefore, you find yourself trying to give to the patient healing you haven’t accepted into your own mind.||You realize you can’t give healing unless you first accept it into your mind. So you see your one responsibility as accepting true perception for yourself.|
|You feel that you are only really caring about the patient if you feel the burden of the situation and the seriousness of your responsibility.||You fulfill your responsibility by being unburdened, by being infectiously happy and carefree.|
|You see the giving of healing as being a sacrifice that depletes you. You must therefore make sure that you do not burn yourself out.||You realize that healing others is not a sacrifice, that by giving you receive. You know that healing others is the way you will be healed yourself.|
|Because healing seems to deplete you, you need to receive gratitude and money as recompense for the loss you incur.||You may receive both gratitude and money, but you realize that your real reward lies in the giving itself, which gives you something as valuable as it does the patient.|