This transcription is a brief segment of a one-on-one dialogue with David and a student of A Course in Miracles. The topic addressed in this discussion is that of immortality of the body.
ACIM student: A question that came to my mind before when you were speaking of the fact that this body is not immortal, but the ego would love to have me believe that it could be. And there is the belief that the body can be immortal. I can remember believing this, and I can remember being very much excited about that whole idea, that the body is immortal. And it seemed very logical to me when I learned about this that it is only the mind’s belief that it is not immortal, that would have it die.
David: Well, if we take it and really string it out… the ego is for something that is nothing. It has the illusion of being very ingenious and that is certainly the experience in the world. It seems to have made up a giant cosmos apart from spirit and apart from abstract union and it seems to have great diversity and variety. There seem to be many different skills, many choices and menus to pick from. In the sense of projection, now as part of the projection we have televisions and camcorders and VCR’s and it is like making movies within movies. The movie of the world is one movie and within that we have another projection. The fragmentation continues into seemingly smaller pieces. But the one thing that the ego has tried to come up with for an answer for heaven is the idea of immortality. It has never and never will be able to mimic or create immortality. Immortality is an attribute of God, of creation, and the ego is a defense against that, literally a puff of nothingness that did not come from God and that is not immortal. The ego seemed to have a beginning and it will seem to have an end. But this is all within the fabric or the framework of the dream. The ego has never been able to come up with or attain immortality, but that doesn’t stop it from at least having the idea of immortality, the idea that the body can be made to live forever. Once again, the body is form. Form and spirit have no reconciliation. They have no meeting point. One spirit exists, and form and time and space do not exist.
ACIM student: The very nature of form is that it’s finite, that it’s not eternal. It cannot therefore be immortal.
David: It has boundaries. Every form has boundaries and limits. God and creation do not.
ACIM student: I remember one of the things that I learned about at that time was about this person Babaji, in India I believe. And he seemed to be proof for the fact that the body is immortal. It seemed that he would be around for periods of time and then he would dematerialize and not be around for periods of time. And then he would re-materialize and stay for a while and dematerialize. And I suppose this has been going on for quite some time now and that seemed to be proof that you don’t have to die, that the body can be immortal if it’s held in the mind that way.
David: Just to perceive a body or a vision though gets back to perception. This can be a symbol, for many a very comforting symbol. It can be a symbol of a teaching that those who have completely laid aside the body, their thoughts are always available to the deceived mind as part of help. And their vision may appear from time to time if that may be helpful, if this is something that the Holy Spirit can reach the mind with. These are nothing more than symbols… of seeing the virgin Mary, Majagori… and these are more examples of visions that can be seen that can be helpful. But these still are perceptions…
ACIM student: So you’re say that it’s still perceptual… it’s still unreal but it’s helpful and it’s reaching the mind where it is?
David: Yes. Yes. The error would be to make the connection that you were doing… that it seems to have been around for a long time, that it seems to be immortal. Once again, knowledge of the kingdom of heaven is purely abstract. It’s light… not light like the body’s eyes see, but light in the sense of understanding and wisdom. Darkness is a metaphor for ignorance, for blockage or unawareness of that light. This knowledge and the kingdom are abstract and any kind of perception, however pure and however stabilized the perception becomes, it still is not knowledge, not the abstract kingdom. It is still perceptual and temporary and will not last.
This publication is made available by The Foundation for the Awakening Mind