The problem we have mainly is we do not correctly recognize what anything is. Even if we're looking right at it.
In the separation, we stopped recognizing that God is God, that we are immortal, that separation is impossible, and that there is no ego. We started to believe that these things were not true, failing to acknowledge, accept, allow or be aware of them being true. We started to perceive something else as though it were true.
That means, we started to "recognize" that ego really exists, that separation is possible, that we are not immortal, and that we're sinful. These things started to seem like reality and truth to us. So when we look at them, we seem to "recognize" that there is truth in them, even though it is not there, because we're actually failing to recognize that these things are obviously not true.
So while we're asleep and trying to wake up, we're going from a state where we don't see, or correctly recognize, what is here, transitioning to a state where we get a much clearer view of things and can tell what is what.
As we do this, removing blocks to awareness and becoming much clearer about what something is and what it isn't (true vs false), things which we never used to recognize as something become more obvious.
One thing I've noticed for example is that various forms of sickness are starting to be recognized by me as the ego at work. I see egoic tendencies, victimhood, self destruction and unwillingness "within" the sickness. I also am seeing the sickness "as" something that has gone wrong, rather than the strange prior condition of awarding it reality or truth or acceptability.
Some people claim that as you wake up more, approaching true perception, you should become unable to see sickness. The fact is, when you are in false perception where people appear to be sick, you are NOT seeing sickness. You are not recognizing it as sickness. Sure you see some of the surface attributes to be able to say it is sickness, but you do not SEE it correctly because to you it seems like truth and reality and irreversibility and natural.
You in fact are seeing it as though it has truth and reality and something worth protecting in it. You don't in that state SEE the sickness, you are actually seeing something IN the sickness that is not there... distorting your perception of the sickness and turning it into reality.
As your perception becomes CORRECTED, you start to see things without those distortions. You step outside of the sickness. You see it from outside of itself instead of from the inside. You learn to *recognize* it for what it is, and not for what you thought it was. That's an increase in awareness and an increase in the clarity of perception. It has absolutely nothing to do with "not being able to see sickness", in fact it has everything to do with becoming ABLE to *correctly* see sickness, recognizing it as false, and not as truth.
This still correlates to the fact that you are becoming aware that sickness is not real, that it is fake, that it has no reality to it and is not the truth about a person. So you are still overlooking the ILLUSION that sickness is the truth. But the removal of the illusions ABOUT the sickness, reveals to you what the sickness IS, rather than what it isn't. What it IS, is something false, something unreal, an ego deception.
Most people who are sick DO NOT recognize the sickness for what it is, they instead experience an unconscious interpretation of it which renders it real and threatening and unchosen and filled with truth. That is not awareness of sickness, that is unconsciousness. And as you look upon someone who is sick, if their sickness appears to you not as it really is but as a tragedy or real or irreversible or set in stone or natural or understandable or it makes sense etc, then there is something wrong with your perception. "A sick body makes no sense."
Yes ultimately you will realize that all sickness is an illusion and eventually you would recognize that there literally is no sickness anywhere. Or at least, that there is no REAL sickness. All of the sickness will be recognized as make-believe and self-inflicted pretense which has no real effect on anything real. That does not mean you won't still perceive it in others while you are in a body. Having true perception is still having perception. It just means that you see the TRUTH of the situation, rather than seeing it falsely. Seeing sickness truthfully shows you that it IS false.
It's the same thing with regards to the real world. In clear perception, the world is RECOGNIZED AS FALSE. It does not mean the world becomes reality or truth. In fact, it is while you believe that the world is true and real that you are in FALSE perception, a state in which you've attempted to convert something which is inherently false, into something true.
This entire world is made-up and does not exist. This is the central lesson the course would attempt to teach - that there is NO WORLD HERE. This whole universe is fake. And when you have true perception, you see truthfully, and this will show you - it will strike you - that this world is in fact FALSE. There is an inherent falseness to it. An unbelievability. Like a vast sea of lies. When you *RECOGNIZE* it for what it IS, and not for what you were making of it, you will simultaneously see it clearly, and see that it is NOT God's creation.
In the Course, the "real world" or forgiven world therefore refers to how this world appears to us when we are seeing it through eyes of love and forgiveness ie CORRECTLY PERCEIVING it without adding to or denying it. It shows us the "truth about" this world, which is why Jesus uses the term "real world" - the reality of this world, is that it is not real. To see the "real world" is to see a glimpse of heaven (which is real), a reflection (face of Christ) in which you can compare and realize, that this world is in fact NOT real and is not part of God.
It's all about recognition. Do I recognize this thing for what it actually IS in the truest perspective, or do I think that it means something else? "I have given the world all the meaning that is has" literally tells us that in false perceptual states, we have tried to turn something fake into something true, something unreal into something real, and have convinced ourselves that we're living inside a real world. This is false. This means we're not perceiving correctly or clearly and do not RECOGNIZE this world for what it actually is. And so we are deluded and deceived.
As we become clearer about what is, we are also becoming clearer about what God is, instead of believing as the ego has that God is evil or dead or the opposite of what you want. Sickness starts to be seen for the blight that it is, and not for something worth keeping.
Jesus speaks in the course about his "inability to tolerate the suffering of others". This doesn't mean He freaks out and gets mad about people being sick. It means he recognizes all forms of suffering as UNNECESSARY and as expressions of false beliefs, coming from distorted perception, and having RECOGNIZED them for the 'guiltless mistakes' that they are, can easily discern and know that they can be corrected. And he can correct them. That's what miracles are for.
But if we do not even recognize sickness or suffering for what it IS, we will actually keep it and support it and fight with it and continue to suffer, because we don't see how easily it can be changed or why it is not what we thought it was. It's almost like learning a language or something... at first all the words seem confusing and we get lost and say the wrong things. But later we become fluent and are able to discern which words are correct. We start to recognize them. Another word for recognition is simply clarity. Awareness. Knowledge.