I once picked up the Conversations with God book in the grocery store; the author bases the book on the teachings of A Course in Miracles, a new age spiritual discipline. I can tell you first hand that ACIM is bad stuff because in my younger idiot years, I studied it myself (a priest recommended it to me…no comment there…)
ACIM claims to have come from Jesus and gives a different explanation of Christian Truths. There is no sin, only error; we are collectively all the Christ, the Son of God, but have forgotten our identity; healing and miracles are a simple matter of remembering who we are and understanding that illness is an illusion we’ve created in our own minds; that our experience of our individual identies as separate individuals is an illusion, that forgiveness is unnecessary because sin is an illusion, and it promises union with God as the Only Son, blah, blah, blah. What makes it dangerous is that it’s very cleverly written, is mystical in practice and because of meditative exercises and repititions done as frequently as every 20 minutes, it affects your mind and how you see things. It takes a lot of work to unlearn what it teaches if you stay with it for long. There are lots of books based on it; Maryanne Williamson’s stuff is all ACIM, for instance; Oprah for a long time was a big fan and had many of the course proponents on her show. It has attracted many, many pre-Vatican II Catholics because it claims there is no guilt and because it’s a very intelligently written textbook. You’d be surprised how many inspirational books, motivational speakers and retreats are actually based on its teachings. In any case, I make it a practice now, whenever I pick up an inspirational book even if it claims to be Christian, if I don’t know the author I check to see if ACIM is mentioned anywhere and often it is. Interestingly, the ACIM foundation is, or was, based in Tiburon, California.
I don’t recall which language that is, but it translates as “shark”…silent, unobtrusive and deadly.