A Course in Miracles is a couple of self-study materials published by the Foundation for Inner Peace. The book’s content is metaphysical, and explains forgiveness as put on daily life. Curiously, nowhere does the book have an author (and it is so listed without an author’s name by the U.S. Library of Congress). However, the text was compiled by Helen Schucman (deceased) and William Thetford; Schucman has related that the book’s material is dependant on communications to her from an “inner voice” she claimed was Jesus. The first version of the book was published in 1976, with a revised edition published in 1996. The main content is a training manual, and a student workbook. Since the initial edition, the book has sold several million copies, with translations into nearly two-dozen languages.
The book’s origins could be traced back to the early 1970s; Helen Schucman first experiences with the “inner voice” generated her then supervisor, William Thetford, to make contact with Hugh Cayce at the Association for Research and Enlightenment. In turn, an introduction to Kenneth Wapnick (later the book’s editor) occurred. During the time of the introduction, Wapnick was clinical psychologist. After meeting, Schucman and Wapnik spent over per year editing and revising the material. Another introduction, now of Schucman, Wapnik, and Thetford to Robert Skutch and Judith Skutch Whitson, of the Foundation for Inner Peace acim lessons. The first printings of the book for distribution were in 1975. Ever since then, copyright litigation by the Foundation for Inner Peace, and Penguin Books, has established that this content of the initial edition is in the general public domain.
A Course in Miracles is a training device; the course has 3 books, a 622-page text, a 478-page student workbook, and an 88-page teachers manual. The materials could be studied in the order chosen by readers. The information of A Course in Miracles addresses the theoretical and the practical, although application of the book’s material is emphasized. The text is mainly theoretical, and is a basis for the workbook’s lessons, which are practical applications. The workbook has 365 lessons, one for each day of the entire year, though they do not need to be done at a pace of one lesson per day. Perhaps most just like the workbooks which can be familiar to the typical reader from previous experience, you are asked to use the material as directed. However, in a departure from the “normal”, the reader isn’t required to think what is in the workbook, as well as accept it. Neither the workbook nor the Course in Miracles is designed to complete the reader’s learning; simply, the materials are a start.
A Course in Miracles distinguishes between knowledge and perception; truth is unalterable and eternal, while perception is the planet of time, change, and interpretation. The world of perception reinforces the dominant ideas within our minds, and keeps us separate from the facts, and separate from God. Perception is limited by the body’s limitations in the physical world, thus limiting awareness. A lot of the knowledge of the planet reinforces the ego, and the individual’s separation from God. But, by accepting the vision of Christ, and the voice of the Holy Spirit, one learns forgiveness, both for oneself and others.