Though it is true that A Course in Miracles is a cumulative experience, one lesson building another, one part of the text expanding and enlightening another, it is also possible to experience the unified wholeness in a single line.
Tara Singh used to say that if one gave the right attention to it, a single sentence of the Course would wake us up. His own writing has that quality as well: clear and resonant as lightening after dusk. Reading it is transformational.
The first miracle principle owns this quality. It contains in its four sentences, its twenty-seven words, the whole of the Course. Who understands it at the level of experience – which includes but does not privilege intellectual understanding – stands at the gates of Heaven.
There is no order of difficulty in miracles. One is not “harder” or “bigger” than another. They are all the same. All expressions of love are maximal (T-1.I.1:1-4).
To the Holy Spirit, resolving a nuclear war and an ache in our big toe are one and the same. Both reflect the same mistaken belief – that what we are in truth can be separate from what God is – and therefore are solved in precisely the same way.
Degrees and quantification are hallmarks of separation. When this person is more beautiful that that one, this child more deserving than that one, this weather preferential to that weather, this belief system sounder than that one.
In this world, in these bodies, our experience is modulated by post-separation thinking. It is not only hard to avoid this; it isn’t really even desirable (T-2.IV.3:8-10). A Course in Miracles always meets us where we are: regardless of what seems to be happening, we can always learn that what “was never true is not true now, and never will be (T-31.I.1:2).
The first principle of miracles frees us from becoming invested in ideas of right and wrong, hard or easy, large or small. Love is incapable of degrees – it cannot be subdivided. All its expressions are “maximal.”
We live in a world of conditions: we give to get and when we get we secretly fear what we’ve gotten will be taken away. All the world of the ego testifies to futility and scarcity and loss. It is never unchanging, it is never unconditional.
What saves us? What delivers us from the illusion of death to the reality of Love? Only a miracle which, by definition, does not share the salient qualities of either bodies or the world in which they appear to live and die.
Your inheritance awaits only the recognition that you have been redeemed. The Holy Spirit guides you into life eternal, but you must relinquish your investment in death, or you will not see the life though it is all around you (T-12.IV.7:5-6).
This simple idea – that miracles know neither degrees nor exceptions – has the power to liberate us altogether. It is the singular proof that we are not doomed but empowered with the means to choose our own salvation.