What happens after physical death?

The world is not left by death but by truth,… (T-3.VII.6:11)

A Course in Miracles teaches that our physical existence is an illusion, and that we are not really in a body. Therefore, in reality nothing happens at all when the body dies. Within our dream existence, however, death is an unknown event that often engenders fear—something we very much like to repress, making it invisible. That is absolutely not warranted. Familiarity with the meaning of “physical death” could be particularly helpful in light of your own death or that of a loved one. In this article, I explore what happens—in a spiritual sense— during the body’s dying process and after its death.

The Course’s view of death

There are numerous spiritual books and sources—old and newer—that provide information about what happens around death and afterwards. However, these do not necessarily contain the most accurate and appropriate messages. After all, within every culture, but also within every time period, new needs arise that determine the kind of information that is provided about this topic. Information provided about death should therefore preferably be attuned to the present time period and spiritual level of the culture. A lot of spiritual information about physical death is expressed within the context of a dualistic thought system, which suggests that all forms (bodies—physical or astral), levels, and spheres really do exist. This can be confusing for those coming from a non-dualistic thought system, like that of A Course in Miracles. How should information about astral and light bodies and various “cosmic” spheres and levels be seen in 1 that context? This article lays the foundation for shedding light on this topic from the perspective of the metaphysics of the Course. Because the Course itself barely deals with the subject, the information in this article is based on what I, via hearing an inner voice, came to understand about it from Jesus. For the sake of clarity, the personal guidance that was granted me from Jesus in this regard (and which therefore does not come from the Course) has been italicized.

We cannot die

Most importantly, as the Course makes perfectly clear, we can never die. God has created only eternal Life, and we are as He created us: There is no death. The Son of God is free. (W-pI.163) However, when the Son thinks he has separated from his Source and leads an individual existence in a dimension of time, space, and perception, in a body that seems to grow older, become ill, and die, then within that dream it seems as though a transition takes place around the death of the body. Just like everything else within our dream, the process of dying and what seems to happen afterwards can be used either by the ego (to anchor us deeper in the dream and make it seem real) or by the Holy Spirit (to help us see through the illusion and awaken from the dream).

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