GOD's ONLY LAW: THE GOLDEN RULE - ACIM IN A NUTSHELL
In A Course in Miracles the "Golden Rule" is a fundamental LAW of God. It is true in Heaven AND on Earth.
The rule is a law of creation, a law of mind. IT APPLIES TO YOU ALWAYS! Since you share an equality of perfection with all parts of creation, with every brother, and with God, it follows that if anything applies to others, it applies to you equally. There are no special laws that apply only to some and not others. No-one including you is excluded from anything. Heaven is all-inclusive and so God's law is all-inclusive. God's INCLUSIVITY ensures that EVERY SON in the sonship SHARES EVERYTHING, what applies to one applies to all, and NOTHING IS EXCLUSIVE. This is the basis of the Golden Rule.
This is woven throughout the course and present in many many statements. The fundamental idea is that in heaven you recognize your brother as identical to and perfectly equal to yourself, sharing everything with you equally. What applies to you applies to everyone, or to no-one at all. If you deserve love, so does everyone. If you judge another as wrong, you are also wrong. This produces a law which doesn't simply say "IF you treat others a certain way, hopefully you MIGHT be treated in a similar way." Instead, it is perfectly absolute, ie:
You do to YOURSELF what you DO to others, because you share perfect equality with them at all times. So that means, literally, you CANNOT ESCAPE CONSEQUENCES of whatever it is you think applies only to others. You cannot do ANYTHING to anyone without doing it simultaneously and directly to YOURSELF.
You do not get to `opt in` or `opt out` of this law. It is ALWAYS APPLYING, even while you are dreaming, and even while you are in the ego. The ego suggests that this law *does not exist*, and so it thinks it can get away with murder. But it cannot. If you attack another you ARE attacking yourself. You cannot be hurtful toward someone without being hurt by your own hurtfulness.
This means that the Golden Rule is a permanent, inescapable law of REALITY, fundamental to existence itself, and applies to everything everywhere at all times. If you attempt to deny it or pretend it does not apply, you WILL HURT YOURSELF in your attempts to hurt others. You can think of it like direct self-inflicted karma. And this is why the secret to salvation is that "you have done this to yourself". You are free to choose, but you are not free from the consequences of choosing attack.
This applies at the level of the BODY also. Whatever you use the body for it becomes to you. It is a communication device. If you use it for attack to transmit attack, YOU will become attacked, because you are BEING attack, and your body WILL show signs of attack also. What you THOUGHT was applying only to the sinner you projected onto, APPLIES TO YOU, and so your projected sin ATTACKS YOU! The body thus will become weak and sick and die. But if you recognize at all times the Golden Rule, and learn that you *MUST* love everyone equally AT ALL TIMES, otherwise you are NOT loving yourself, then you are bringing God's Word to others and this *guarantees* your body will be perfectly healthy. ALL sickness and even death arises from DENIAL OF THE GOLDEN RULE.
So really ACIM is quite simple. It is simply saying that this Golden Rule exists, it is absolute unavoidable LAW, it doesn't matter if you're awake or sleeping it still is applying, and so you CANNOT escape the result of trying to make something to apply to others that you don't want to apply to yourself. You therefore simply have to honor the law and work WITH it rather than against it, learn to love EVERYONE EQUALLY and FULLY SO THAT you yourself are included in that and are loved fully, and therefore express love to others in the same way you would express it to yourself, because giving love INCREASES the love in YOU. If you comply with the law, you will be SET FREE from the ego!
The Golden Rule is also the basis of all miracles. Miracles are founded on the principle that there is union and equality with all brothers, rather that separation. That we are all equally innocent. That we all deserve unconditional love. And that when you recognize this in your brother you WILL recognize it in yourself simultaneously, because what applies to one applies to all. What applies to one son, applies to the whole sonship. So when you express from this all-INCLUSIVE love, towards your brother, emphasizing the love IN THEM that is YOUR LOVE, you heal them and miraculously help them.
At times, when we are in ego and we think the law does not apply, and are in denial, we also are unconscious of what we are DOING TO OURSELVES. And so we do not think a) that we did this to ourselves, and b) do not even SEE ourselves doing it to ourselves. Thus we think not only a) other people do stuff to us that they don't do to themselves, b) stuff applies to others than doesn't apply to us. These are ego lies. Underneath them the Golden Rule STILL applies. We are still DOING TO OURSELVES what we are ALSO DOING TO OTHERS. At all times.
And so this is where "shared interests" come into play. You cannot have someone be guilty while you are innocent, nor can you find someone unworthy while you think you are worthy, or be justified in anger that someone is is wrong and not you. Any time something is seeming to apply to someone else that does not apply to you equally, you are in DENIAL, and WHAT you are denying is the Golden Rule - the truth about all creation. You have to UNLEARN the ego's paradigm of it being POSSIBLE to have something apply to someone else SEPARATELY from what applies to you, and LEARN that what applies to you MUST APPLY TO OTHERS AS WELL. That means either BOTH of you are guilty, or BOTH of you are innocent, and there are NO EXCEPTIONS to this. So if you want to be happy and innocent, you MUST find your brother to be innocent also. To be loved, you MUST love. To be free of ego, you MUST overlook ego everywhere. To overcome sin, you MUST forgive your brother's sin.
"Forgiveness recognizes your brother has not sinned and in this view are ALL YOUR SINS FORGIVEN." This is the GOLDEN RULE!!! Comply PERFECTLY with the Golden Rule and you will be in the Atonement!
Here are just a handful of quotes relating to this...
"Consider the Golden Rule again. You are asked to behave towards others as you would have them behave toward you. This means that the perception of both must be accurate, since the Golden Rule is the Order for appropriate behavior. You can't behave appropriately unless you perceive accurately, because appropriate behavior DEPENDS on lack of level confusion. The presence of level confusion ALWAYS results in variable reality testing, and hence variability in behavioral appropriateness."
"Projection still has this "hurling" connotation, because it involves hurling something you DO NOT want, and regard as dangerous and frightening, to someone else. This is the opposite of the Golden Rule, and having placed this rule upside down, the reverse of miracles, or projection, follows automatically."
"Denial should be directed only to error, and projection should be limited to truth. You should truly give as you have truly received. The Golden Rule can work effectively only on this basis."
"As you release, so will you BE released. FORGET THIS NOT, or love will be unable to find you, and comfort you."
"And, as he loves them, so he looks upon HIMSELF with love and gentleness. He would no more condemn himself for HIS mistakes than damn another."
"When the Bible says "Judge not that ye be not judged" it merely means that if you judge the reality of others at all, you will be unable to avoid judging your own."
"If your brothers are part of YOU, and you blame THEM for your deprivation, you ARE blaming yourself."
"Quickly and gladly is His vision given to anyone who is but willing to see his brother sinless."
"You choose between your brother and yourself, and you will gain as much as he will lose, and what you lose is what is given him."
"Do not allow your brother not to remember, for his forgetfulness is YOURS. But YOUR remembering is HIS, for God cannot be remembered alone."
"Forgive your brother, and you CANNOT separate yourself from him, nor from his Father."
"In separation from your brother was the first attack upon yourself begun. And it is THIS the world bears witness to."
"My brother is my Savior. Let me not attack the Savior You have given me."
"Would you cut a brother off from the Light that is yours? "
"As you see him you will see yourself. Whether this be through the use of psychological tests, or by making judgment in some other way, the effect is still the same. Whenever you have judged anyone, it is impossible for you not to make this judgment on yourself."
"When you have seen your brothers as yourself, you will be RELEASED to knowledge, having learned to FREE yourself, of Him Who knows of freedom."
"If you see your own hatred AS your brother, you are not seeing HIM."
"Do not forget, however, that to deny God will inevitably result in projection, and you will believe that others, AND NOT YOURSELF, have done this TO you. You WILL receive the message you give, because it is the message you WANT. You may believe that you judge your brothers by the messages they give YOU, but you HAVE judged them by the message you give THEM. Do not attribute your denial of joy to them, or you cannot see the spark in them, that could bring joy to YOU. It is the DENIAL of the spark that brings depression, and whenever you see your brothers WITHOUT it, you ARE denying God."
"This demonstration EXONERATES those who misperceive, by establishing beyond doubt that they have NOT hurt anyone."
"Is healing frightening? To many, yes. For accusation is a bar to love, and damaged bodies ARE accusers. They stand firmly in the way of trust and peace, proclaiming that the frail can HAVE no trust, and that the damaged HAVE no grounds for peace. Who has been injured BY his brother, and could love and trust him still? He HAS attacked, and will attack again. Protect him not, because your damaged body shows that you must be protected FROM him. To forgive may be an act of charity, but NOT his due. He may be PITIED for his guilt, but NOT exonerated. And if you forgive him his transgressions, you but ADD to all the guilt that he has really earned. "
"The ONLY way to heal is to be healed."