ACIM teaches us that the body is the hero of our dream: emphasizing that our wrong minded ego makes it as the means to focus on the separation. We give our body special attention, and make special ways of valuing it: shape, weight, skin color, hair color and length, strength, all are valued in combination for sexual reproduction and power. Absent a body we have no existence here in the separation.
Archeology has shown that the body is our signature evolutionary achievement. Size is the most obvious. Other changes are less obvious. Longevity, resistance to diseases bolstered by medical science, and enhanced stamina are noticeable. We have devoted considerable time, effort and resources to improving our ability to live longer in this separation. A Course in Miracles gives us ways to change how we think about what we do with and for our body.
Here are the opening sentences of the thirteen paragraphs of Section VIII “The ‘Hero’ of Our Dream,” from Text Chapter 27.
T-27 VIII 1.2 The body is the central figure in the dreaming of the world.
2.1 The dreaming of the world takes many forms, because the body seeks in many ways to prove it is autonomous and real.
3.1 The body’s serial adventures, from the time of birth to dying are the theme of every dream the world has ever had.
4.1 Thus are you not the dreamer, but the dream.
5.1 How willing are you to escape effects of all the dreams the world has ever had?
6.1. Let us return the dream he gave away unto the dreamer, who perceives the dream as separate from himself and done to him.
7.1 A timelessness in which is time made real; a part of God that can attack itself; a separate brother as an enemy; a mind within a body all are forms of circularity whose ending starts at its beginning, ending at its cause.
8.1 The world but demonstrates an ancient truth; you will believe that others do to you exactly what you think you did to them.
9.1 In gentle laughter does the Holy Spirit perceive the cause, and looks not to effects.
10.1 The secret of salvation is but this: that you are doing this unto yourself.
11.1 This single lesson learned will set you free from suffering, whatever form it takes
12.1 Bring, then, all forms of suffering to Him Who knows that every one is like the rest. [Him refers to the Holy Spirit/Jesus]
13.1 How differently will you perceive the world when this is recognized!
I emphasized sentence one in paragraph six to call attention to one of the most valuable teachings in ACIM, which is in the second sentence, the ”tiny mad idea.” Our belief in the separation was caused by that. Here is all of paragraph six.
Let us return the dream he gave away unto the dreamer, who perceives the dream as separate from himself and done to him. Into eternity, where all is one, there crept a tiny, mad idea, at which the Son of God remembered not to laugh. In his forgetting did the thought become a serious idea, and possible of both accomplishment and real effects. Together, we can laugh them both away, and understand that time cannot intrude upon eternity. It is a joke to think that time can come to circumvent eternity, which [means] there is no time. (both emphasis mine)
THE FIRST STEP IN CHANGING BELIEFS IS TO EXAMINE THEM. That’s why I outlined ACIM’s 13 paragraph discussion of how our ego-centric illusions make the world of separation. And above is the signature passage (paragraph six), which helps us to change our minds and see that the world is an illusion.
It is difficult to turn a mistaken belief into something to laugh about. But when we can laugh together it’s much easier. I learned that laughing is infectious during a high school party listening to and joining in with Spike Jones’s “Laughing Record.” Picture a room full of 1940s teens laughing themselves sick. Open Spike Jones’s classic with a Bing search or google and find out for yourself.
“Together,” in the above passages refers to the Holy Spirit/Jesus. We can join with Jesus in that laughter any time we choose to remember to laugh.