Course in Miracles (also referred to as ACIM or "the Course") is a self-study curriculum (spiritual in nature) that sets forth an absolute non-dualistic metaphysics yet integrates forgiveness emphasizing its practical application in daily living.
There is no author listed on either the cover or the title page of the copyrighted publication, nor is there a "personal name" listed for author/creator with the United States Library of Congress. However, in the Preface of the Course, under the section entitled "How It Came," there is a first-person account by Helen Schucman who describes in her own words the process by which the material came to fruition. Schucman claimed to have written the material, with the help of William Thetford, based on the dictation of an inner Voice. In the last paragraph of this section, Schucman explains why the names of the collaborators do not appear on the cover.
It is considered by some to be a short cut to the fast lane for spiritual awakening... it is not a religion, although it does use Christian terminology.
The most recent copyrighted, published edition of A Course in Miracles is the only edition that contains in one place all of the writings that Schucman authorized to be printed. It is published by the Foundation for Inner Peace, the organization chosen by Schucman for this purpose.
A Course in Miracles has been translated into nineteen different languages with eight new translations underway.
A Course in Miracles was originally written in a collaborative venture by Schucman and Thetford. In the beginning, the Voice (Jesus) described them as scribes.
The teachings of A Course in Miracles have been supported by such mainstream commentators as Oprah Winfrey in her interviews with author Marianne Williamson.
In 1983, control of the copyright was transferred to the FACIM as headed by Ken Wapnick.
Beginning in June, 1996, and ending in April, 2004, a copyright lawsuit initiated by Penguin Books and FIP was brought against the Church of the Full Endeavor for their unlimited independent publication of substantial portions of A Course in Miracles. It was found that the contents of the FIP first edition, published from 1976 through 1992, are in the public domain. However, copyright in all of the changes introduced in the Second Edition remains intact, as does the copyright for the Text Preface, "Clarification of Terms" found at the end of the Manual for Teachers, and the two supplementary pamphlets, Psychotherapy and Song of Prayer, as well as Schucman's poetry, The Gifts of God. The Urtext manuscript of A Course in Miracles, which has been widely published on the internet, was obtained deceptively under false pretenses. This material is under separate copyright and all duplications and versions of this copy are in violation of its copyright protection.
The Text contains the largest volume of material--containing 31 chapters--and discusses the theory upon which A Course in Miracles is based.
The Workbook contains 365 lessons, which are designed to be used daily to help a student practice applying the principles set forth in the text.