A radical teaching in the Course which not many are willing to accept, is that the condition of your body is still subject to the Golden Rule. That means that what applies to you applies to others equally. So when your body is sick, it IS attempting to attack both you AND your brother. It is not sick in isolation, it is a double-edged sword. And while your body is sick, it IS accusing your brother of sin, attempting to show to Him HIS sinfulness, attempting to attack Him and make Him dead.
Therefore the ONLY way to exonerate Him and to PROVE to Him in an undeniable way, that He must be innocent, is to demonstrate a body which has no signs of sickness or attack. YOUR health is HIS health. The body must become a symbol and representation of immortality, a sign of life, so that when your brother looks upon its loveliness He recognizes HE must be innocent because YOUR body shows no signs of effects, and therefore He cannot have attacked you. This is not merely wishful thinking. It requires a supernatural state of protection in which it becomes IMPOSSIBLE for your body to be attacked, sick, or dead.
This is also very clearly and radically spelled out in Chapter 27, section 2... "the picture of crucifixion", in which Jesus states we are to stop demonstrating sickness TO others, in order to teach only life and innocence. He even goes on to say that the Holy Spirit has prepared an alternative BODY, which is free from all signs of attack, and we are to show it to others to prove "brother, at your hand I live", defying all attempts by others to find signs of the effects of their attempted attacks, thus exonerating them.
There are few sections of the course less understood and more denied than this one.
Additionally, in Chapter 27 section 3 "the fear of healing" (!!) which follows on, Jesus opens with this statement, building upon this:
"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."
So what he is saying here is that a damaged body (sick, ill, diseased, broken, in pain etc) is ACTIVELY ACCUSING. In order to BE in states of sickness the mind has to entertain level confusion, has to project causality outside itself, sees itself as at the effect of external causes, and thus sees brothers as the CAUSE of the sickness, thus accusing anything other than yourself of causing the suffering. And then the body SHOWS a representation of this mindset, accusing your brother through PHYSICAL EVIDENCE, that HE must be the sinner who caused this. "Brother at your hand I die".
And so when you are making your body show up as sick, demonstrating self-attack, you attack both you and your brother, because separation comes BETWEEN you. The physical form of sickness is a weapon of accusation against both of you. Therefore... and this should be obvious unless you are into justifications and level confusions and denial, that the ONLY WAY to EXONERATE your brother, while you still have a body, is to NOT SHOW HIM any signs of sickness or damage in your body. If your body is still in a state of sickness, you ARE still accusing him, and therefore your mind CANNOT be healed. This is why, without exception, "a broken body is proof the mind has not been healed." There is no escape from this. You cannot have a sick body and a healthy mind.
This is a Course in miracles and it is a course in LIFE. It is not a course in being sick, which is a little death. It is a course in HEALTH. It is a course in healing. It is a course in removing ALL signs of attack and separation in the body PRIOR to being in a mental state capable of resurrection. The course ends in resurrection, not death. You MUST NOT SHOW SICKNESS OR DEATH TO THE WORLD!
Jesus goes on to say "Forgiveness is not real UNLESS it brings a healing to your brother AND yourself. YOU must attest his sins had no effect on YOU, to demonstrate they were not real. How else COULD he be guiltless? And how COULD his innocence be justified UNLESS his sins have no effect to WARRANT guilt?"
And so when your brother attempts to accuse or attack your body, you must DEMONSTRATE (which means to show physically), that his efforts produced no EFFCTS, your body HAS no effects of sickness or damage, your body could not BE attacked, and you are a picture of invulnerability. "Sickness is a defense against the truth" speaks of this protection, which is SUPERNATURAL and defies all ego laws and laws of physics:
"The body's health is fully guaranteed because it is not limited by time, by weather or fatigue, by food and drink, or any laws you made it serve before. You need do nothing now to make it well, for sickness has become impossible. Yet THIS PROTECTION needs to be preserved by careful watching. If you let your mind harbor attack thoughts, yield to judgement or make plans against uncertainties to come, you have again misplaced yourself, and made a bodily identity which will attack the body, for the mind is sick. "
And let us also remember from the manual for teachers:
"The central lesson is always this; that what you use the body for it will become to you. Use it for sin or for attack, which is the same as sin, and you will see it as sinful. Because it is sinful it is weak, and being weak, it suffers and it dies.
Use it to bring the Word of God to those who have it not, and the body becomes holy. Because it is holy it cannot be sick, nor can it die. When its usefulness is done it is laid by, and that is all. THE MIND MAKES THIS DECISION, AS IT MAKES ALL DECISIONS THAT ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE BODY'S CONDITION. ...Sickness is now impossible to him. ....Oneness and sickness cannot coexist."
In this there are no exceptions. The condition of the body REFLECTS the condition of the mind, and the mind is the ONLY CAUSE of the body's condition. There are NO outside powers that bring oppression or suffering, including death. You are supposed to DEMONSTRATE LIVE that nothing can hurt you or your body. Not even your brothers attacks. And even as he attempts to attack you, it has NO EFFECT, proving IN FORM in undeniable evidence, that he MUST NOT have sinned because it had no consequences, and therefore He is innocent. His innocence is proved to him through your miraculous demonstration. "The mind must be stronger than the body, every miracle DEMONSTRATES this."
To suggest you can have sane healthy mind while the body remains sick is DENIAL, it is a split mind, and impossible. It is your responsibility to SHOW that nothing happens to you against your will, you cannot be attacked unless you attack yourself, and "no one dies unless they choose to do so" - which means NO ONE ELSE can make you die if you do not choose it. The message given by the mind and the message given by the BODY MUST BE ONE, otherwise you are giving double messages and are a LIAR.
So yes, this DOES MEAN, that the state of your PHYSICAL BODY is actually important while you have it, it is part of the MIND's experience, it is not exempt from your demonstration of sanity, it is supposed to be USED to communicate health and healing, and therefore YOU MUST STOP MAKING IT SICK OR DEAD in order to complete the Course! The course ends in resurrection, not death. No-one escapes a dream of death through death. You HAVE to make the body healthy and healed and whole and free from sickness of every kind BEFORE your mind can be ready to overcome death entirely. And that means there is a supernatural POWER that you must demonstrate to others. This is why "Miracles are teaching devices."
All those who would say the body doesn't matter, or it isn't able to be sick, or it doesn't exist, or mind is separate from body, or sickness isn't real, or whatever other DENIAL BULLSHIT, I suggest you reconsider and read what Jesus has actually said. HE says the body must be used as evidence of immortality and innocence, and you can't do that if it's still in a state of corruption. I suggest you look at Chapter 19 - obstacles to peace - the INCORRUPTIBLE BODY. Here is the opening paragraphs:
"One thing is sure; God, Who created neither sin nor death, wills not that you be bound by them. He knows of neither sin NOR its result. The shrouded figures in the funeral procession march not in honor of their Creator, Whose Will it is they LIVE. They are not FOLLOWING it; they are OPPOSING it. And what is the black-draped body they would bury? A body THEY dedicated to death, a symbol of corruption, a sacrifice to sin, OFFERED to sin to feed upon, and keep ITSELF alive. A thing condemned, damned by its maker, and lamented by every mourner who looks upon it as himself.
You who believe you can condemn the Son of God to this ARE arrogant. But you who would RELEASE him are but honoring the Will of his Creator. The arrogance of sin, the pride of guilt, the sepulchre of separation, all are part of your unrecognized dedication to death. The glitter of guilt you laid upon the body would KILL it. For what the ego loves, it kills for its obedience. But what obeys it not, it CANNOT kill. You have ANOTHER dedication which would keep the body incorruptible and perfect as long as it is useful for your holy purpose."
It's time to start raising the dead and showing that you cannot be hurt in any way, on any level, even in form.
We are not supposed to be moving TOWARDS death, in any way. Not even physically.
From Chapter 19 section 9 - "the attraction of death":
"And so it is with death. Made by the ego, its dark shadow falls across all living things, because the ego is the "enemy" of life.
And yet, a shadow cannot kill. What is a shadow to the living? They but walk past, and it is gone. But what of those whose dedication it is NOT to live? The black-draped "sinners," the ego's mournful chorus, plodding so heavily AWAY from life, dragging their chains and marching in the slow procession that honors their grim master, lord of death? Touch any one of them with the gentle hand of forgiveness, and watch the chains fall away, along with YOURS. See him throw aside the black robe he was wearing to his funeral, and hear him laugh at death. The sentence sin would lay upon him, he can escape with your forgiveness.
This is NOT arrogance. It is the Will of God. What is impossible to you who choose His Will as yours? What is death to you? Your dedication is NOT to death, nor to its master."
CLEARLY, if you are moving toward death, you are moving away from LIFE, and God's Will is that YOU LIVE. "It is not God's will that you suffer". You MUST NOT MAKE YOUR BODY DIE otherwise you are NOT DOING GOD'S WILL. This IS what the Course is teaching. STOP DYING!
Even if the body is not real, even if it is an illusion, you CANNOT continue having it be sick or dead while maintaining the you are awake and spiritual. You MUST use it to demonstrate immortality, health, happiness and holiness. You MUST use it to bring healing to others. You MUST use it as a communication medium through which miracles are performed for others. And you must use it to EXONERATE your brother of all sin. If you are moving into physical sickness, you HAVE defenses against the truth. If you are moving toward death, YOU DO WORSHIP IT.
You are supposed to become CAPABLE of overcoming death entirely, making death impossible for you, PROVING it is impossible for you, and not ALLOWING OR CHOOSING death to "happen to" the body against your will. "No one dies without his own consent." You CANNOT have a sane mind without a healthy body. "The mind, being sane, heals the body." "Those who are sick do not love themselves for if they loved themselves they would heal themselves".
It is all simple and clear. This is a Course in the LIVING and a moving closer TO LIFE, which is God. You cannot approach God, who is life, and have sickness and death be maintained on any level. The body MUST RESURRECT and become holy. Failure to do so is failing the course.
Below is the full quote from the course about how you use the body to teach the innocence or sinfulness of another:
"Whenever you consent to suffer pain, to be deprived, unfairly treated, or in need of ANYTHING, you but accuse your brother of attack upon God's Son. You hold a picture of your crucifixion before his eyes, that he may see his sins are writ in Heaven in your blood and death, and go before him, closing off the gate, and damning him to hell. Yet this is writ in hell and NOT in Heaven, where you are BEYOND attack, and prove his INNOCENCE. The picture of yourself you offer him you show YOURSELF, and give it all your faith. The Holy Spirit offers you, to give to him, a picture of yourself in which there is NO pain, and NO reproach at all. And what was martyred to his guilt becomes the perfect witness to his innocence.
The power of witness is beyond belief, because it brings conviction in its wake. The witness is believed BECAUSE he points beyond himself, to what he REPRESENTS. A sick and suffering you but represents your brother's guilt; the witness which you send, lest he forget the injuries he gave, from which you swear he never will escape. This sick and sorry picture YOU accept, if only it can serve to punish him. The sick are merciless to everyone, and in contagion do they seek to kill. Death seems an easy price, if they can say, "Behold me, brother, at your hand I die." For sickness is the witness to his guilt, and death would prove his errors MUST be sins.
Sickness is but a "little" death; a form of vengeance not yet total. Yet it speaks with certainty for what it represents. The bleak and bitter picture you have sent your brother, YOU have looked upon in grief. And everything that it has shown to him have you believed, BECAUSE it witnessed to the guilt in him, which you perceived and loved. Now in the hands made gentle by His touch, the Holy Spirit lays a picture of a DIFFERENT you. It is a picture of a body still, for what you REALLY are can not be seen nor pictured. But THIS one has NOT been used for purpose of attack, and therefore never suffered pain at all. IT witnesses to the eternal truth that you can not BE hurt, and points BEYOND itself to both YOUR innocence and HIS.
Show THIS unto your brother, who will see that every scar is healed, and every tear is wiped away in laughter and in love. And he will look on his forgiveness there, and with healed eyes will look BEYOND it, to the innocence that he beholds in you. Here is the proof that he has NEVER sinned; that NOTHING that his madness bid him do was ever done, or ever had effects of any kind. That NO reproach he laid upon his heart was EVER justified, and NO attack can touch him with the poisoned sting of fear. Attest his innocence and NOT his guilt. YOUR healing is his comfort and HIS health. BECAUSE it proves illusions were not true.
It is not Will for Life, but wish for death, that is the motivation for this world. Its ONLY purpose is TO PROVE GUILT REAL. No worldly thought or act or feeling has a motivation other than this one. These are the witnesses that are called forth to be believed, and lend conviction to the system they speak for and represent. And each has many voices, speaking to your brother and yourself in different tongues. And yet to both the message is the same. Adornment of the body seeks to show how lovely are the witnesses for guilt. Concerns about the body demonstrate how frail and vulnerable is your life; how easily destroyed is what you love. Depression speaks of death and vanity of real concern with anything at all.
The strongest witness to futility, which bolsters all the rest and helps them paint the picture in which sin is justified, is sickness in whatever form it takes. The sick have reason for each one of their unnatural desires and strange needs. For who could live a life so soon cut short, and NOT esteem the worth of passing joys? What pleasures COULD there be that will endure? Are not the frail ENTITLED to believe that every stolen scrap of pleasure is their righteous payment for their little lives? Their death will pay the price for all of them, if they enjoy their benefits or not. The end of life must come, whatever way that life be spent. And so take pleasure in the quickly passing and ephemeral.
These are NOT sins, but witnesses unto the strange belief that sin and death are real, and innocence and sin will end alike, within the termination of the grave. If this were true, there WOULD be reason to remain content to seek for passing joys, and cherish little pleasures where you can. But in this picture is the body NOT perceived as neutral and WITHOUT a goal inherent in itself. For it becomes the symbol of reproach, the sign of guilt whose consequences still are there to see, so that the cause can NEVER be denied. Your function is to PROVE to him that sin can HAVE no cause. How futile MUST it be to see yourself a picture of the proof that what your function IS can never be.
The Holy Spirit's picture changes not the body into something it is not. It only takes away from it ALL signs of accusation and of blamefulness. Pictured WITHOUT a purpose, it is seen as neither sick nor well, nor bad nor good. No grounds are offered that it may be judged in ANY way at all. It has no life, but neither is it dead. It stands apart from ALL experience of fear OR love. For now it witnesses to NOTHING yet, its purpose being open, and the mind made free again to choose what it is FOR. Now is it not condemned, but waiting for a purpose to be GIVEN, that it may fulfill the function that it will receive.
Into this empty space, from which the GOAL of sin has been removed, is Heaven free to be remembered. Here its peace can come, and perfect healing take the place of death. The body can become a sign of life, a promise of redemption, and a breath of immortality to those grown sick of breathing in the fetid scent of death. Let it have healing as its PURPOSE. Then will it send forth the message it received, and by its health and loveliness proclaim the truth and value that it represents. Let it receive the power to represent an endless life, forever unattacked. And to your brother let its message be, "Behold me, brother, at your hand I live."
The simple way to let this be achieved is merely this; to let the body have no purpose from the past, when you were sure you KNEW its purpose was to foster guilt. For this insists your crippled picture is a lasting sign of what it represents. This leaves no space in which a DIFFERENT view, ANOTHER purpose, can be given it. You do NOT know its purpose. You but gave ILLUSIONS of a purpose to a thing you made to hide your function from yourself. This thing WITHOUT a purpose CANNOT hide the function that the Holy Spirit gave. Let, then, ITS purpose and YOUR function be both reconciled at last, and seen as one."