I've heared mixed reviews about the course. Has anyone done it? Whats it all about and why would people say bad things about it?

asked 28 Jan '10, 01:56

Michael%201's gravatar image

Michael 1

edited 09 Aug '12, 06:49

Barry%20Allen's gravatar image

Barry Allen ♦♦

ACIM suffers from the same problems that many other "minor-industry" new-age movements do; namely, that it is difficult to determine whether it is real or merely a way for someone to make money. So you're always going to find people who don't like it, or dismiss it as "just another cult."

That doesn't necessarily mean that the material is bad; it just means that there will always be naysayers in the world. Google any spiritual term with the word "cult" or "scam", and you will always find plenty of people willing to voice their negative opinion about your particular brand of spirituality.

The following is excerpted from a letter responding to the article about A Course in Miracles at the Skeptic's Dictionary:

I did want to express my personal experience with A Course in Miracles. I have studied the material very intensively for about 5 years. It would be absolutely impossible to write any kind of a summary with any understanding unless you have spent a great deal of time and especially practice with the material.

The Course is in its entirety a perfect practice of forgiveness. It is a step by step process by which you break down the walls of separation between yourself and your fellow man. And it works. It does not claim exclusivity or specialness, it is not a religion or a cult. It is a completely individual practice of learning to love your fellow man through forgiveness. It is a book in complete self-responsibility. And that is what it is.

I have gone from being a very selfish, self-centered, angry, irritable person who blamed everyone else for my problems to someone who has complete peace and many moments of great joy. I feel joined and connected with my fellow man. I see innocence where I used to see evil. The world has not changed, but I look at it differently.



answered 28 Jan '10, 03:58

Vesuvius's gravatar image


edited 28 Jan '10, 21:27

I am going through the online version now and don't see anything bad about it.

I am still at the beginning and the ideas are a bit hard to grasp. What I like about it is that it takes very little time and it forces you to see the things around from a different perspective. I think that doing so consistently for a full year will have a lasting effect on your perception of the world.

The main reason I am going through it is because I'm a Wayne Dyer fanboy and Dyer keeps mentioning ACIM in his books and lectures :)


answered 02 Feb '10, 03:26

Toshiro's gravatar image


I did go through it about 7 or 8 years ago. Nothing harmful about it, nothing that didn't help me to progress spiritually. I would say it is beneficial. Personally, though, it didn't resonate with me on any level. I could tell you few things of lasting value that I learned from it. Many other things helped me so much more. You have to decide for yourself.


answered 28 Jan '10, 15:47

LeeAnn%201's gravatar image

LeeAnn 1

I am reading ACIM as I read other spiritual books, and it is no cult. It does espouse some concepts very different to biblical followers, but I am open to that. As you read it, you will be amazed at the similarities to the words of this text and the words of the Qur'an, Buddhism, Mayan Toltec beliefs. It is far more secular than the bible, but I must say it is often difficult to understand. If the phrasing of the text puts you off, read the books by Joel Goldsmith (who also channeled Jesus back in the 1940'/50's). It is very readable. Essentially, they all say the same thing: we are all the same, we are nothing but love and joy. Any of these philosophies can help us move back toward our divine beginning.


answered 22 Feb '11, 23:36

Barry%20legh's gravatar image

Barry legh

In 2003 i experienced a revelation, enlightenment etc ... say it as you will. Prior to this I had not read any spiritual book nor followed any spiritual practice. A Course in Miracles (ACIM) was the first book i was led to after this experience ... what it says is 100% true! As i say i didn't read it or anything else before so was not influenced by anything.There are some that profit from ACIM, some that write about the course and make mistakes and they are all in the perfect place to learn as well.If you choose to do the course, it says to read the text first as this will give you a "basic" understanding of what it means and make the lessons more meaningful.

The lessons are to be done one a day although the course says you may take longer and thats ok. It calls itself "mind training" and says that it is a self study course. In my experience i read something, don't understand it and so ask ... then when i am ready to accept the meaning it just "comes" to me. It states that it's a required course but that there are many forms all with the same content. It states that gods son, also known as all of us, as one, are innocent and claims that we can experience this, that is what god showed me.

Definition of cult; a religion or religious sect generally considered to be extremist or false, with its followers often living in an unconventional manner under the guidance of an authoritarian, charismatic leader.

ACIM has no leader and no authoritative figure, it is self study, it is radical teaching, only love through forgiveness, those studying it are encouraged to continue with their normal life.

Now lets compare that to the many religions and some christian churches which teach hell and eternal punishment which was never mentioned in the original scriptures, nor did they ever speak of sin but only of errors. Check out the root meanings and you will be amazed at what has been added, and worse, that which has been removed ... reincarnation was a belief written in the Bible but was removed circa 550 CE ... prior to this a vote was conducted to remove and include books to the Bible, about 14 books were removed when the King James Version was introduced ... the list is breathtaking! Interestingly when you begin to get to the root of the true meaning of the Bible it says the same as ACIM, Buddha, Upanishad, Rumi and on and on!

The Bible after all of that twiddling by men ... the truth still remains in the words spoken by Jesus ... if you look through love in non judgement as Jesus directed :)

In my humble opinion if ACIM speaks to you do it, if it doesn't then keep love in your heart and trust that it will guide you ... it will

God is LOVE

See you ALL at Home :)


answered 15 Feb '11, 17:29

Tony's gravatar image


edited 21 Jan '13, 14:11

blubird%20two's gravatar image

blubird two

Oh yeah! See u then...

(23 Feb '11, 02:57) all2gethernow

Excellent answer Tony. I firmly beleive the bible as it stands just now has been tampered with to a great extent.

(21 Jan '13, 14:10) Monty Riviera

I did it for 4-5 months and decided it wasn't for me. In a nutshell the book is about forgiveness love and peace. Forgiveness is probably seen as the main focus. Through forgiveness you can reach love peace joy etc. There is a daily lesson.

Each lesson is like a meditation. The first few lessons take no time at all, however after a few months if done properly the lessons become extremely time consuming. It is not easy to understand either and is best done in conjunction with a weekly group where more knowledgable people can advise and guide.

Many things put me off ACIM. In the group I went to I didn't see any evidence of people who were anywhere near spiritual enlightenment. Even amongst their highly regarded spiritual teachers no one seems to be anywhere near the level of enlightenment reached by Eckhart Tolle or Byron Katie etc. There are so many.

In fact one of their highly regarded teachers 'probably' made up a story about two accended masters who gave him information about ACIM. He wrote a book about it, after destroying the tapes of course and made a lot of money from it. Evidence has since come to light that he is probably a fraud and made the whole thing up. Acim students appear not to care about the damning evidence against this teacher. They can become quite aggressive if you mention any of the facts about this. I found it impossible to hang around with others who quoted him as if he was a genuine spiritual teacher.

Finally, one of their beliefs is that we are not really here. This life is all just an illusion, so nothing really matters. We are actually living with God now and are not really here. I could not grasp or believe this at all. Although I can understand how it would be easy to forgive if you thought you were not really here. I think forgiveness is a major part of spiritual enlightenment but not in the way ACIM does it. It felt forced and unnatural.

However I don't think its a cult. Appart from the famous teachers of it I don't think anyone really made any money from it. The weekly class I went to just asked for a donation. No one gave more that a few pounds and they sometimes didn't cover the cost of the room. Even the original scriber who channelled the information donated the book and didn't make money from it.

The other things cults get accused of is separating people from family and friends. ACIM could never be accused of this, because even if your family treated you badly they would tell you it didn't really happen since we are not really here. All part of forgiveness etc.

I still have the book. It has many many wonderful quotes in it.


answered 02 Oct '10, 22:20

lola's gravatar image


edited 17 Dec '10, 23:28

Vesuvius's gravatar image


Eckhart Tolle is not enlightened.

(21 Jan '13, 14:37) flowsurfer

Jeanne: If you understand the definition of a cult, your belief system called Christianity in all its various forms is a cult, too. Any group or philosophy that touts itself as "The Only Right and Correct Way" is a cult. Period. Whatever your particular brand or denomination is, just ask the other Christians. Most will say you're in a cult, especially if you're evangelical, Catholic, Mormon, JW, Southern Baptist, Pentecostal, Apostolic, Greek Orthodox, or, well, you get the point. But you go on thinking you know The Truth. We'll just sit back and say, 'There, there, little one. Go in peace.'


answered 27 Nov '10, 23:29

RKM's gravatar image


@ RMK (in regards to your last sentence) or it could be the other way around, since no one knows really what the truth is, or am I missing something? I would be very interested to here your school of thoughts.

(28 Nov '10, 06:45) Inactive User ♦♦

Simply judging by the material itself, ACIM is on such a sophisticated level metaphysically that it's really hard to find much fault with it. As far as it being "bad", if it is some kind of cult, it is literally the least harmful cult ever. It calls for no money, the book has no author names/fame to be gained from this, etc... If it is a cult it's the crappiest cult ever, which is odd considering how deep the material is.


answered 13 Dec '10, 04:46

Bardo's gravatar image


I have been studying The Course in Miracles and I've been back and forth wondering if it true or not. The more Divine guidance I ask for, the more doubts keep on coming to me...

I have read that one of the authors worked for many years in a CIA research team, in which the subject was mind control techniques.

As said, apparently not many people made money from the Course. At least not the authors. But was that really the goal, if the Course was a scam?

Not in this case. I'll explain:

Based on the theory that this was just another CIA experiment, once the message had spread out the country and the world, a good percentage of the world population would have just been nothing more than catatonic zombies. They could have perfect slaves, do with them whatever they wanted and students of the Course would never fight back! Easy targets.

I've talked with some students of the most known ACIM schools in the world and I can tell you that they are really brainwashed... They claim to be enlightened, based on a theory (resume by me) that if you deny everything at all then you are enlightened because you have seen the Truth and therefore are enlightened. But none of them is enlightened, I guarantee you that. They see every question as an attack and call themselves advanced teachers based in the answer that they know nothing!!! I have a lot of e-mails that everyone would be astonished by its content. So I guess their higher level of enlightenment must be autism!!! lol

A famous book called "Disappearance of the Universe" (author Gary Renard) is about two ascended masters that appeared Gary Renard several times, talking about the Course. You can feel that it is a fairy tale talking about the Course while you read it, so far so good. A lie, but a poetic one... But almost at the end of the book, you get the not really that hidden message that catholic priests are pedophilian, the english are great, America is the nation responsible for taking care of the world and the war in response yo the 9/11 was understandable and inevitable!!! Damn, the ascended masters knew it all, except that the 9/11 was an inside job...

So once again the CIA crap came to my mind... But still I will keep on doing the Course, let's see if I change my point of view about it.


answered 12 May '11, 21:08

Memo's gravatar image


Ok, after more and more information kept on coming to me as I asked everyday for Jesus to guide me completely (or the Holly Spirit or asking God that I make His Will,(these are all forms of asking for the same)), I read "The Power of the Now" and after "Practicing the Power of the Now" by Eckhart Tolle.

Now doubts stopped and the Course starts to make total sense to me. Not a zombie state is the goal now, but a state of re-connection with the Being (aka God).

(17 May '11, 17:46) Memo

I recommend this you all do this:

1) Read the Textbook of A Course in Miracles; 2) After start the daily exercices of the Workbook of the Course; 3) After starting the workbook and meanwhile you do it, read the Manual for Teaches of the Course, and then the following; 4) Read Gary Renards's "Desapearing of the Universe". Helps you to understand the Course; 4) Read Eckhart Tolle's "The Power of Now" and then "Practicing the Power of now". Now it all makes sense and it's logical. 5) Read The Song of Prayer from the Course; 6) Read the Psychotherapy from the Course; 7) Use your learnings.

(17 May '11, 17:55) Memo

i appreciated reading the responses, thanks everyone for sharing. my 2 cents- i'm studying the text with a weekly group offered by a teacher whom i consider to be very knowledgable in many different ancient spiritual practices. many times i've heard him refer to other philosophies, and he says that the material in the Course does not exclude any wisdom from other religions. I believe that the Course is a complete translation of Who and What we really are, at least in my experience. i have not travelled eastern countries or studied too much of tibetan buddism but the course resonates with me the way Thich Naht Han's, Rumi's, and Eckhart Tolle's words do. The course is a very very practical and encouraging work, for me. i came to it out of desperation to hear truth, to heal my angry and limited, painful habits of thinking. thru the text and doing the daily lessons, i am finding the deep peace that we all, apparently, were given for ETERNITY. the course encourages me to seperate truth from illusions, and to keep my awareness firmly on the truth. through that focus, learning to use my Mind for the highest, highest good, i do believe i will yet perform miracles. because hasn't science now proven how unimaginably powerful our minds are? imagine the power of uniting our minds and Wills with the Universe's will? The quantum leap from fear and doubt and scarcity-thinking to abundance, life, and Miracles...............well this moment, with its scientific evidence as well as life transforming evidence, is too good to waste! find YOUR truth and be happy, if ACIM is true for you and helps you, you will know it. if not keep searching, meditate, move and experience yourself on your journey Home.


answered 21 Jan '13, 11:58

Corrie's gravatar image


as i understand ACIM, it is a technique of allowing the divine presence to work spontaneous and natural miracles through you. other effects in other people will be "being in the flow, zone or groove". you will be channelling your holistic self through a positive ego.

from the preface: it's only purpose is to provide a way in which some people will be able to find their own internal teacher.

from the INTRODUCTION: Nothing real can be threatened Nothing unreal exists. Herein lies the Peace of God

as anything else in this world, it can be misinterpreted and misused by people, organizations or institutions. everything is basically neutral, what matters is the meaning you invested into anything, generating the reality reflective of your state of being.

as one evolves, current techniques may not work in the future. they have done their job. one will have to move on to more suitable methodology.


answered 27 Jan '13, 16:49

don's gravatar image


edited 28 Jan '13, 23:21

@don Marianne Williamson's book called something like "Return to Love" is based on ACIM - I didn't get very far with ACIM only because I didn't have the staying power at the time but seem to remember Ms Williamson's book was readable and well thought of, although I can't really remember much about it now as this was a few years ago. Anyway, just thought I'd mention it as a reading companion to ACIM.

(29 Jan '13, 04:15) Catherine

thanks for the info, Catherine.

(29 Jan '13, 05:17) don


If you approach this text with an open mind you will benefit greatly. I completed the year long text about four months ago. Now that i have a clearer perspective, i am able to see the changes and progress that has occured in my life as a benefit of it. It's almost like taking vitamins. The big stinky kind. They smell a little funny and you're not quite sure what there made of, but man do you feel good when there running through your system! I am sure that this text can produce the same results as a kundalini awakening. respond if you want to hear more... also, two of my closest personal relationships were healed and i have an everpresent sense of calm and well being.

ps. go for it! read the text and do the workbook simultaneously.

shine on.


answered 23 Jan '11, 00:04

all2gethernow's gravatar image


Tony gave a good answer to your ?. I've had an amazing experience w/acim and continue to 6 years later. Go at your own pace, read the text first, then do the daily exercises. Follow the instructions ( important ! ). It takes a minimum of 13 months, probably longer. You won't care if you're open to it. :)


answered 09 Aug '12, 23:23

amur's gravatar image


No, it's not, I have read through it skimming and everything I had read seemed pretty good to me, and agreeable.

This is a link to the free online version.

Link fixed 10-19-14

Course In Miracles Audio Book Both links work now 10-19-14


answered 28 Jan '10, 06:37

Wade%20Casaldi's gravatar image

Wade Casaldi

edited 19 Oct '14, 18:06

Thanks for the link. I dont qute understand the format of it though. Do I start with book one, at "Meaning of Miracles" and go straight thru all three books, or do I start in Book 2 where theres the 365 lessons and start with lesson one.

(28 Jan '10, 23:07) Michael 1

Here is what I do for any book that has things to teach, I take what I agree with, and leave what I don't agree with. This way i always get benefit from books even if something small like one little thing that makes me feel ah ha! I have not studied it in depth really to tell you I just looked through what I found interesting.

(29 Jan '10, 09:40) Wade Casaldi

Links no longer work.

(30 Sep '10, 02:50) Vesuvius

I found it on line added it to docs but haven't taken the time yet to go read it (see link above)

(04 Oct '10, 07:06) ursixx

Way back machine link that works from Augest 2011.


(13 Dec '23, 21:38) Wade Casaldi

Here is the other link from The Way Back Machine captured from November 2010.


(13 Dec '23, 21:44) Wade Casaldi

Here is a wonderful link to the lessons on Youtube. I have been enjoying the lessons again. It is now Dec 2023 good link working well.


(13 Dec '23, 21:49) Wade Casaldi
showing 2 of 8 show 6 more comments

I've just found out about the book and was going to ask the question asked in this thread. As some links are broken or not longer available, I will supply one more, the most complete I have found till now, full text in .pdf version, with Workbook for Students, Manual for Teachers, free, printable version:

A Course in Miracles

I would like to know, is the Workbook by itself worth the while reading without going through the text? I ask this because I found the workbook's ideas quite good, but I am not certain if the book is just the thing for me...



answered 15 Nov '10, 15:39

BridgetJones09's gravatar image


I still have an old copy of the Book in my personal Library. I was quite intrigued with their practice, but I have come to understand that it is a Book with a complete different method of healing that I have ever come across. It has enlightened me in many ways, and I must say that it has broaden my Horizon into the spiritual aspects of things, and it has left with me a sense how much more I need to learn, and do, but it is a hard Book to fully digest!


answered 28 Nov '10, 07:29

Inactive%20User's gravatar image

Inactive User ♦♦

@Vee: I posted this but no one responded so I ask you ;) I would like to know, is the Workbook by itself worth the while reading without going through the text? I ask this because I found the workbook's ideas quite good, but I am not certain if the book is just the thing for me..., as you say, I find it hard to digest. The workbook instead, sounds like interesting practice... What do you think?

(13 Dec '10, 12:02) BridgetJones09

@BJ09, to be honest, if you want the full benefits to understand “A Course in Miracles,” then it would be beneficial to you to read the book from beginning to end, and follow up by doing the Workbook!

(14 Dec '10, 06:55) Inactive User ♦♦

ACIM is most effective if used conscientiously.

I managed to complete the year-long Workbook on my third try, after twice bailing on the process. About a month after finishing the Workbook on my third attempt, I began to "channel" a voice that offered information for spiritual growth. Like Helen Schucman, I don't become the entity. I "hear" the words inside my mind.

I have read the ACIM Text four times since 2003, and was recently directed by my guide to repeat the Workbook portion of the book. I could tell how much ego I still had in my mind based on my response: "Oh no! Another year of that?!"

I have tried to join ACIM study groups three times since 2006. Each time it seemed to me that other group participants were not truly interested in releasing the ego - which is what ACIM promotes. ACIM is all about undoing the ego.

I think that one has to feel very desperate to change - long very much for truth - before one will take ACIM seriously enough to follow the book's practice instructions. Only when one performs the exercises religiously will one have the kind of experiences necessary to change one's learned beliefs about God, human relationship, guilt, blame, happiness, peace - everything. My guide has often told me that most human beings do not pursue the kinds of experiences necessary to change their minds about God and spirituality. One must pursue to have!

One thing that few others may realize is that doing the workbook actually changes the "physical" makeup of one's mind. The words of ACIM carry a higher healing energy that is introduced into the mind when one works with the ideas in the book. The vibration makes one begin to reach for more of that feeling. This experience helps one turn, more and more, from ego thinking to what I call "God thinking".

Anyway - great book. As far as I'm concerned, this is the new Bible. Sometimes, I imagine Jesus thinking, "Okay - that other one got kind of lost in translation. Let's try it again."


answered 12 Sep '12, 18:16

Laurie%20C's gravatar image

Laurie C

My favorite spiritual text to date. Why I like it:

  • it is very thorough, great for intellectual types, great for getting around the intellect to achieve wakeful meditation
  • its primary goal is to connect the reader with own 'internal teacher.' As I've made that connection, I've consciously set the book aside, as suggested within the book. Thus, unlike other spiritual books, there isn't a plea to rely on the outer guide when the inner is so much more pertinent to 'my reality.'
  • I have now experienced miracles and understand them clearly now as not spectacles with which to induce belief. Might take yet another 1000 years for rest of humanity to catch up with that definition. Until then, I ask, who cares if you can walk on water, move mountains or manage some other physical feat? Let me know when you can love maximally and live peaceably. Then we can have a REASONABLE discussion on miracles.

answered 12 Aug '13, 12:57

Jman's gravatar image


edited 12 Aug '13, 12:58

This book is based on true deception against Christianity. It uses language/ lingo that is similar to biblical doctrine thus creating a misleading idealism of creating our own personal set of miracles so to speak that takes us away from our personal relationship with JESUS CHRIST.It is a cult!!!


answered 30 Sep '10, 00:31

Jeanne's gravatar image



If you object to people creating their own miracles, I suspect this website isn't for you :)

(30 Sep '10, 06:39) Stingray

agrees with Stingray

(28 Jan '13, 02:57) ursixx

interesting ... it makes us think about what true christianity is really all about ... for me the aim of true christianity, that is, a christianity without all the chafe, and a course in miracles is identical, that is, they are both pathways towards enlightenment :)

(29 Jan '13, 05:53) blubird two
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