A Course in Miracles: The Movie unveils a unique way to forgive and be happy. Some of the world’s most respected teachers and authors appear.
What is the Course?
The Course is a “universal, self-study spiritual thought system that teaches that the way to Love and Inner Peace is through Forgiveness,” according to the Foundation for Inner Peace.
Columbia University professors Helen Schucman and William Thetford compiled the words of a Voice giving a “rapid, inner dictation” to Schucman in the late 1970s. Dr. Ken Wapnick, who appears in this film, helped editorially organize the Course.
The terms “Jesus” and “Holy Spirit” are symbolic of God’s love, experts say, and do not refer to the historical Jesus of Nazareth or to the Holy Spirit of Christianity.
Each student/teacher develops a unique relationship with the Course. Teacher Earl Purdy appreciates Jesus’ Seinfeld-like, ironic humor. Wapnick believes that Jesus is a Freudian.
It’s only a dream
“This whole game that we call life is just an illusion, just a projection of what’s going on within,” says the late Tomas Vieira, co-author of Take Me to Truth. “All the answers that we’re seeking are within.”
“Most of us spend this ‘life’ in this dream trying to fix the dream, when the only game in town is to wake up out of it,” Vieira adds.
Eventually we see that “all is well, all was always well. There is nothing to fix. And also there is nothing to be guilty of! All that we need to do is just gently wake up,” says Vieira.
Simply put, “Nothing real can be threatened. Nothing unreal exists. Herein lies the peace of God,” says the Course.
Changing our minds
The Course “doesn’t focus on love,” Wapnick explains. “It doesn’t focus on truth, it doesn’t focus on forgiveness in the usual sense of the word.”
“It really focuses on the resistance we have to accepting the love,” says Wapnick. “What the Course does is unveil for us our secret wish to be unfairly treated.”
“It’s about unlearning everything that we think is real,” says Nouk Sanchez, co-author of Take Me to Truth. “We find out that what is really real is love.”
From “me” to “we”
“What it’s really about is changing your perception, looking at the world differently and undoing the ego,” according to Gary Renard, teacher and author of The Disappearance of the Universe. The ego is “the ‘me’ that we think we are,” Vieira notes.
“According to the Course, [forgiveness] is a fast way to get home” and transcend suffering, Renard says. “Most of us are just experiencing a great deal of pain until we’ve had enough,” Vieira adds.
In the world, not of it
“Absolutely everything is happening within our mind, which means that your mind is not in your body. Your body is in your mind,” according to Rev. Tony Senf of the Unity Center of the Heights, Cleveland, Ohio. “Your body isn’t even in the world.”
“There really is no world out there,” says filmmaker and seminar leader Chad Cameron. “Much in the same way when you dream at night, there’s nobody in dreamland infringing on you.”
The world is “a playground of illusion, full of false paths, false values and false ideals. But you are not part of that world,” according to Sai Baba. Jesus advised us to “be in the world but not of it.”
Heaven on Earth
The separation from God or Source never really happened, says the Course. We chose to be born “so that we could prove that the ego is right and God is wrong,” Wapnick notes.
“The Course teaches us that reality is perfect oneness, and that’s the definition of heaven. It’s an awareness of perfect oneness,” says Wapnick.
Author and teacher Tom Carpenter describes forgiveness as “undoing the judgments we have made in the past. . . . The payoff ultimately is that it will teach you the truth of who you are,” Carpenter adds.
“It looks like there are probably 6 billion people out there and 6 billion minds out there that need to be saved. There’s really just one,” says Renard.
A new way to forgive
Every time someone pushes our buttons, it’s an opportunity to forgive, says Sanchez. Basically, we are forgiving what never really happened. By blaming others, we project our own guilt onto them. Blaming only makes us feel better momentarily.
“If you forgive as you go along, then eventually you’re going to undo the ego, be more in the condition of Spirit, and because of that what will happen is that the unconscious guilt that is in your mind will be healed by the Holy Spirit,” Renard says.
“When I choose to forgive and let go of guilt, which means I let go of my belief in separation . . . . then all of my relationships become holy,” says Wapnick.
“Let forgiveness be the substitute for fear. This is the only rule for happy dreams,” says the Course.
Get happy and forgive
Renard urges us to forgive continually. “Do it now, get in the habit of doing it, and it can make all the difference in the world, both in terms of your immediate experience, and also in the long-term direction of the mind.”
“You don’t have to struggle to be what you already are,” says Renard. “All that you have to do is undo the false you, undo the ego, and eventually the experience of the real you will be there for you.” If you really want to change the world, change yourself, teachers advise.
Puppetji the puppet guru says: “Just enjoy your life. Here. Now. This is it. . . . It is all one big mystery.”
A Course in Miracles: The Movie 2010 / NR / 1 hour, 1 min
Cast Overview: Ken Wapnick, Nouk Sanchez, Tomas Vieira, Lyn Corona, Chad Cameron, Linda Carpenter, Earl Purdy, Gary Renard, Linda McNabb, iKE ALLEN, Susan Dugan, Tom Carpenter, Tony Senf, Puppetji
Director: iKE ALLEN
Genre: Documentary, Spirituality