In A Course in Miracles, Jesus gives a new definition for what is life, and what is death. He does not mean that life is "the stuff in this world" and that death is "when bodies are totally dead and lie on the ground decaying." He has a totally different view of life and death because he recognizes what things ARE, not what we think they are.
"Life" is equated ONLY with eternal life. That which lives forever, cannot be attacked, never becomes sick, does not age or grow old and cannot die. Life which extends forever and produces more life through miraculous creation in the extension of God's being, which is the ONLY function of Spirit. That is real life. And such a life is only possible in what Jesus refers to as HEAVEN. And Heaven is considered to be completely OPPOSITE to Earth and a totally different place to exist. "Heaven is the dwelling place of the Son of God." "Earth, Heaven's opposite in every way."
"Death" is equated with anything that is NOT that or which opposes it in any way, which includes dreams, and includes this world (Earth). It includes any state of separation, any dream world, any dream body, any thought of attack, any even minor upset, even a slight grievance, all forms of sickness ("all sickness is but a little death"), all levels of suffering, and the "final" death itself. In other words, everything in this world and universe is considered to be DEATH. It is a dream of death. The entire thing is made of death. "Without the idea of death there is no world."
This is why "there is no life outside of Heaven". There is nothing ETERNAL in this world, because all things visible will end and all things that perish are illusions. "The world you see is an illusion of a world. God did not create it, for everything He creates MUST be eternal as Himself." And let's face it, without denial, nothing in this world lasts forever. This world is the idea of being outside of Heaven, it is founded on separation, and it is founded on denial of life. Which is death.
Jesus states, this world is "at best an ILLUSION OF LIFE, at worst, death". Even if this world is seen with forgiving eyes, even if it is seen through true perception, even if it is supposedly loved, it is STILL an illusion of an opposite to Heaven and it STILL entails the idea of death, without which it CANNOT seem to exist at all.
This is what Jesus means by life and death. Life is Heaven, Earth is death. Life is eternal. Anything limited is an illusion of life and is made of the idea of death. Anyone who has perception still needs healing because they're still inside a separated state and are inside the idea of death. Anyone who is a teacher of God, using the body for a holy purpose, is still inside a dream of death.
Until you GO HOME TO HEAVEN, you do not have access to eternal life. Even though it is permanent, and hiding behind this world's illusions. Until you are IN HEAVEN, and have forgotten this world Earth, you have not CLAIMED eternal life or gone beyond that which perishes and ends. Earth IS NOT HEAVEN. It cannot be heaven. Its laws and the spacetime belief that it is based on a TOTALLY OPPOSED TO LIFE. The things you see in this world which you THINK are life, are NOT. They are illusions of life.
Even the "real world" is an ILLUSION OF LIFE. It may reflect or seem SIMILAR to or like Heaven but it is NOT the same thing. And nor is LOVE, in this world, the same thing as LOVE in Heaven. Because love means LIFE and CREATION and that is ONLY POSSIBLE in Eternity. Outside of Heaven, LOVE IS AN ILLUSION OF LOVE, a REFLECTION, which appears like a picture, an image, symbolizing love. It falls short of the full love of God which can ONLY be experienced beyond this universe, beyond the world, beyond the body, beyond ALL illusions of life.
This is why RESURRECTION HAS MEANING. When you get to the end of the curriculum, it ENDS IN THE RESURRECTION. It ends there because resurrection means LIFE. And that means, that every state you were in BEFORE the resurrection, WAS NOT LIFE. Resurrection is the RETURN TO eternal life. Before that, you did not have awareness of eternal life. You only had awareness of dreams of life. The body has absolutely nothing to do with LIFE.
"The body does not live or die, it is nothing at all." To think that EVEN the human body is alive, is a mistake. It does not live, because if it lived it would have a mind and a will and a soul and THAT is the level confusion that produces sickness. The body does not CREATE. Believing it creates is SICKNESS. It does not CAUSE anything. It has no ability to EXTEND LIFE. Its production of other bodies is an ILLUSION of the extension of life. Baby bodies are no more "life" than adult bodies. They are all illusions in a dream world.
"The body is the central figure in dreaming." It depends on the dream, without the dream it does not exist, and the dream cannot happen without it. Dreams are not REALITY. They are not REAL LIFE. If you endow the body with the properties of Christ, ie eternal life, mind, spirit, extension, etc.... you are making an illusion real and you have false perception. It IS FALSE PERCEPTION to believe that this world is ALIVE. It is false perception to believe that physical objects EXIST. It is false perception to SEE BODIES. It is false perception to look with the body's eyes and senses and believe that what they show you EXISTS AT ALL OR IS EVEN HAPPENING. These are illusions. "To sense is not to know."
This is an imaginary universe designed to block your awareness of LIFE. It is a dream state. And ALL dreams are based on the one central dream from which all illusions stem - death. It may seem to entail a spectrum, ranging from what what seems like life, to what seems like death, and it may seem to you that a living body is "more alive" than a dead one, but they are ALL THE SAME ILLUSION. NONE of them have eternal life, and they are all ILLUSIONS of life and death. They are not real. They do not exist.
ONLY the creations of light are real. ONLY the extension of God's spirit/being is real. ONLY unlimited infinite love is really love. ONLY Heaven is ALIVE. It is the LIVING WORLD OF LIGHT. It is absolutely nothing like this illusory world of darkness and death. And if you think that death is ONLY the state where things are do decayed that they are laying on the ground "lifeless", think again. That is merely the extreme end of a spectrum ranging from death to death.
You, RIGHT NOW, in your body, imagining you are living, are NOT REALLY ALIVE. You are NOT RESURRECTED. You are half dead. Asleep. That is what UNCONSCIOUSNESS means. Until you are FULLY CONSCIOUS, fully awake and aware of Heaven, you are unconscious and asleep and dreaming, and in your dream you imagine a world that you think is alive, even though it is being manufactured by a mind that is RESISTING LIFE and AVOIDING BEING ALIVE. We are all just zombies, "the living dead", walking around a world made of death, without which there is no world.
Heaven is life. Earth is death. Heaven is heaven. Earth is hell. Heaven is eternal. Earth will end. Heaven is reality. Earth is a dream. Heaven is immortality. Earth is mortality. Illusions of life do not turn into life. They disappear and reveal the life that they were trying to hide. Heaven on Earth is "heaven on an illusion". Not going to happen. Illusions recognized disappear. "A forgiven world cannot last." You will not find even ONE example of eternal life IN THIS WORLD, YET ALONE being able to say that ALL THINGS in this world have eternal life. Not even ONE LITTLE THING lives forever here, and anyone who thinks that's not true, is clearly in denial.
"Where God created life, there life must be". IN Heaven.