A Course in Miracles Blog

Miracles are spectacles to induce belief? No, it is only a warning not a mandate

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I keep hearing various people say things like "using miracles as spectacles is wrong" and various other statements which make it sound like we should not be performing miracles.

These are all based in fear!

Jesus's statement (from an earlier version) is: "(A miracle is misunderstood when it is regarded as a spectacle.)
11. The use of miracles as a spectacle to induce belief is wrong. They are really used for and by believers."

What he is saying here, is that miracles are used BY believers - people who believe in the correct sequences of cause and effect, who believe God wants to heal all the time, and who are in touch with the willingness (not fear) to extend the miracles of love all the time rather than accept the consequences of sin.

He is also saying here, that such miracles are typically given TO those who BELIEVE. Which means, someone, as a receiver, typically needs to have some faith of their own, some belief in God, in order to be WILLING to receive a miracle.

This aligns with the unfortunate scenario, that if people do not want healing or are not ready for it, miracles cannot do anything to help them, especially if they would scare them, and quite honestly, miracles COULD produce fear in a lot of people indirectly because of the way they totally defy every expectation of the ego.

So what Jesus is saying is, since miracles are typically given BY someone who "believes", TO someone who has at least some measure of belief, this is the natural way that miracles CAN operate. So when you try to go outside of that, to "induce belief", to enforce belief, to try to MAKE someone believe, or to perform a miracle against their will, for the sole purpose of trying to create a FICTIONAL scenario where they might be shocked and awed and caused to react in some way, as a SUBSTITUTE FOR BELIEVING, that would be in appropriate and a mistake.

So you would not attempt to use a miracle to just entertain a crowd or to try to get people to follow you or to show off or to "force people" into complying or healing or obeying or anything like that. This is because miracles come from LOVE, love enters where it is WELCOME, and therefore it is LOVING not to try to coerce people with some kind of dazzling light show that is just there to be a "spectacle". When we are using miracles in this way as spectacles for that sole purpose, we are basically attempting to turn them INTO MAGIC, to put on a magic show, which has as its only purpose to delude and manipulate, rather than to ACTUALLY HEAL, or to be RECEIVABLE by someone who believes in God's love for them.

This is ALL that Jesus is telling us not to do. He is not in ANY way telling us not to perform miracles, NOR is he telling us that our miracles need to be SMALL AND WEAK AND UNNOTICED. Nor is he telling us that we should not move a physical mountain, or even something bigger than that. Nor is he telling us to keep miracles on the HUSH HUSH and make sure no-one notices. Nor is he telling us to never show or demonstrate anything which someone looking on MIGHT come to be shocked and in awe of.

The ego is SUPPOSED TO BE TAUGHT by a miracle, that the laws of the ego do not apply. Miracles are teaching devices. They WILL BRING INTO QUESTION what people believe is possible and true. If someone who was just dead, is suddenly brought back to life, this is going to radically challenge the belief system of ANYONE who sees it happen. They won't be able to "believe their eyes". Some of them will be in awe, although they should not be. Some of them would be perhaps even afraid and run away in fear that some kind of magical voodoo is happening, because they don't understand or aren't ready to receive it.

Miracles are CAPABLE OF BEING "spectacles" in that, they are capable of being very IMPRESSIVE, and extraordinary, and way out of the box, and not something that you typically see every day (which is sad, because miracles are supposed to be happening ALL the time, every day).

Perhaps my favorite demonstration of a miracle is Jesus walking on water. I mean, talk about the POTENTIAL to be considered a spectacle. Quite a demonstration! To suddenly see someone out in the ocean not sinking whatsoever as though he was lighter than air. To SEE THAT, would've been extraordinary, and you could think well, Jesus is just SHOWING OFF. No he is not. It was a teaching situation to PROVE that the ego's laws do not apply and that ANYONE can walk on water. He was giving an EXAMPLE of the truth. Some would call it a spectacle because they put it in the same category as "anything which is extraordinary or dazzling is a spectacle". No. Spectacles are ego attempts to induce belief instead of building UPON belief. It doesn't in any way mean you shouldn't walk on water or float through the air or turn yourself into a giant mushroom.

When Jesus came back from the dead and showed up, just kind of casual like, probably laughing, "and you all thought I really died, haha".... the people who saw him were probably like... is that a ghost? Am I hallucinating? Am I seeing things? Have I lost my mind? The ego will be severely challenged. And at the same time, it would've come across as awe-inspiring and really radically impressive and intense and life changing!

Jesus is not telling us to SHOVE MIRACLES UNDER THE CARPET, nor is he telling us to AVOID BEING SUPERNATURAL, nor is he telling us to "beware" just in case we scare someone, nor is he telling us to keep miracles a private secret. NOR does he mean that such miraculous healings and reversals of sin/separation/death are MAGIC. They are NOT MAGIC. Magic goes in totally the opposite direction and makes things WORSE. Miracles make things BETTER. They heal and undo and correct and reverse what the ego has tried to accomplish. They have nothing do with magic at all, UNLESS you start to twist their purpose as a way to try to FORCE someone to believe when they are not ready to. This is all that Jesus is warning us about.

That we keep using these kinds of statements as a way to POO POO miracle-working is a really sad misuse of the course and a really unfortunate way to KEEP PEOPLE POWERLESS, as well as being a massive form of DENIAL and FEAR about what miracles are and what they are capable of. When the Holy Spirit performs a miracle, your mouth is going to be hanging open! This is only because we're so used to being UNMIRACULOUS that we think that's normal, and that miracles are UNNATURAL. Miracles are natural, being sick and dying and having to suffer is UNNATURAL.

So no, miracles are not inherently spectacles to be avoided by all who are afraid of the power of the mind. It is just a CAUTION, not a turn off.

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