A Course in Miracles Text Made Simple

To gain the most from A Course in Miracles Text Made Simple, we recommend that
you read the corresponding chapter and section in the Text of the Second or
Third Edition of A Course in Miracles published by the Foundation for Inner Peace.

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Chapter 3: The Innocent Perception

Section IV: Error and the Ego

Read ACIM Chapter 3, Section IV (pages 41-44)

What is basis of the error of the ego?

God’s Creation is an extension of Himself, retaining all of His qualities and attributes — Love, oneness, peace, and joy. Because God’s Creation is an extension of Himself, it is one with Him and cannot be different. God’s Creation is one undivided whole.

The idea that anything could exist that is different and separate from God’s Oneness is a mistaken thought. When this error in thinking is accepted by any part of God’s Extension, it is a choice against its unity with its Source and Creator. Around this mistaken idea an entire thought system was built that is called the ego. In this false ego thought system, the mind became divided. Where there is division, conflict is inevitable. “A separated or divided mind must be confused.” (3:4)

Why is all of God’s power given to us?

Because we are His extension and remain connected to Him, all of God’s power is ours. We can choose to create like God by extending His Love or choose to believe that we are different and split off from our Source. When we believe we are separate, we project that separation by making up images of separate bodies and separate forms. By choosing to be separate, we are choosing to perceive this world of separation.

What directs the power of our mind?

The power of our mind is directed by our thoughts and beliefs. When we choose to believe that we have spit off from God’s oneness, we believe we have made a self that is different from what God created. With this belief in a made up separate self identity, we lose awareness of our Source because we are denying that God’s Creation is one undivided whole that extends Itself as one. This idea of a separate existence leads to perception because it now appears there is something external to perceive.

How does the Course define consciousness?

“Consciousness, the level of perception, was the first split introduced into the mind after the separation, making the mind a perceiver rather than a creator.” (2:1) Consciousness can receive messages from either the Holy Spirit or the ego. (See C-1.7:3-6, Manual for Teachers, pages 79-80) The Holy Spirit brings us messages that lead to peace and the recognition of Love’s oneness. The ego’s messages bring us the false perceptions of differences, conflict and lack of peace. As we vacillate between listening to the Holy Spirit and listening to the ego, our consciousness can shift awareness dramatically.

Can our consciousness be trained?

The goal of the Course is to teach us to train our consciousness to receive the messages of the Holy Spirit rather than the ego. This will lead us to true perception and thus prepare us to accept knowledge, which is beyond consciousness or perception. “The mind returns to its proper function only when it wills to know. This places it [the mind] in the service of spirit, where perception is changed.” (5:6-7)

As long as we want to believe in the error of separation, truth will not dawn upon our minds. Truth does not impose itself upon us. We have to be willing to accept it by giving up our misperceptions. We do this by being willing to give our misperceptions to Jesus or the Holy Spirit to be corrected. When Jesus says, “I can erase all misperceptions from your mind if you will bring it under my guidance,” (7:7) he is speaking as the manifestation of the Holy Spirit. By choosing to bring our perceptions to the Holy Spirit for clarification, we are choosing to listen to our right mind. By doing this we will find peace and remember our unity with God.

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Reference Keys for
A Course in Miracles Quotes

How to Read References for Quotes from A Course in Miracles

Below are example references to specific sentences using the notation of the Second & Third Editions of A Course in Miracles published by the Foundation for Inner Peace:

T-26.IV.4:7 = Text, Chapt. 26, Section IV, paragraph 4, sentence 7.

W-pI.169.5:2 = Workbook, Part I, Lesson 169, paragraph 5, sentence 2.

M-13.3:2 = Manual for Teachers, Question 13, paragraph 3, sentence 2.

C-6.4:6 = Clarification of Terms, Term 6, paragraph 4, sentence 6

The above numbering system of the Second & Third Editions is © Copyright 1992, The Foundation for A Course in Miracles.

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