Article # 8: Forgiveness - How do we heal the separation between the mind and The Mind?
Spirit really has nothing to do with this healing process. Spirit sees no separation of any kind. Spirit, being Light, sees only Itself and knows only of Itself.
Separation is a denial of Light, it is an illusion of darkness.
When Spirit comes upon darkness, it merely shines it away, never having noticed it at all for it was never really there. There was no war between the Light of Spirit and the illusion of darkness, there was and is no battle and there was and is no victor.
The Light of Spirit has shined the illusion of darkness away and the darkness is seen no more.
This process may be called a 'healing' or it may be called a 'correction' or it may be called a 'forgiveness'.
We will use the term 'forgiveness' because it is probably one of the most misunderstood terms floating around in our culture and our consciousness.
Forgiveness is one of the most compassionate things that we can do. It is greatly misunderstood and because of this it is rarely given in the truest sense of the word.
We tend to think of forgiveness as an act of kindness that we choose to give to some people who seem to deserve it, yet withhold this gift from others who seem un-deserving and un-repentant. This gives us a significant sense of power.
Forgiveness actually has nothing whatsoever to do with other people. Forgiveness has everything to do with the person giving forgiveness. It is a decision that we make for ourselves.
In the physical world, people may do bad things to us, unforgivable things. And yet there seems to be pressure upon us to forgive them for their embarrassing, annoying, hurtful or vengeful actions that were directed against us. We say it takes a big person to forgive. And so we seem compelled to dole out our forgiveness in tiny bits and pieces to those we think deserve it.
This is an amazingly arrogant perspective and yet we reward this kind of thinking by saying that we were being a better person, a bigger person, than the one to whom we offer our forgiveness.
From a different perspective, a higher perspective, we are all part of one family and even though we appear separate, have separate names, we are still one family that is unified in Spirit.
The law of cause and effect pretty much says what I cause, I have effected. What I do, what I cause to be done, returns to me. When I give something to someone, for example a $100 bill, in the physical sense, I have lost that hundred dollar bill. I gave it away. I have it no more. I have lost it.
From an energy perspective, I have given a loving thought of abundance as witnessed to by the $100 bill, yet I retain in my thinking the idea of abundant wealth. And so, in the universe of energy, I have lost nothing, but I have re-inforced, I have strengthened, the idea of abundant wealth in my own mind. Energy is expressed through ideas. A $100 bill is a piece of paper that symbolizes wealth. It is not the wealth itself, it is not the idea and it is not the energy, it is only a symbol of these things.
The law of cause and effect, the foundation of giving and receiving, tells me that what I give comes back to me. If I give a loving thought, that loving thought will return to me. If I give a physical witness to abundant wealth, that will return to me as well, in some physical form. If I give a compassionate thought of forgiveness, that forgiveness will return to me. By forgiving others, I am given forgiveness. It does not matter that the other person may never accept my forgiveness, what does matter is that by my giving forgiveness, forgiveness returns to me and blesses me by its presence.
I have the opportunity, many times each day, to give forgiveness. Many times I refuse, preferring to hold on to my grievances. Holding onto grievances is often a comfortable activity in which to engage. Grievances support the negative perspective by witnessing to my being victimized by people around me and by the world in general.
By being a victim, I somehow seem to be free from the demands of a free person. A free person must act freely, openly, compassionately, lovingly. A victimized person claims the right to be angry. We seem to spend a great deal of our time in anger, frustration and denial. We have been experiencing these feelings for so long that they appear familiar, almost comfortable and un-alterable. It seems that as a victim of the world, there is nothing we can do about it, just grin and bear it.
Forgiveness seems to be one of those concepts that good people use to help themselves feel better. I forgive you for your transgressions against me and so I feel better about myself. As if I have given you a gift which you do not really deserve. And so I have been a better person by forgiving you.
Forgiveness is really a gift I give myself. Forgiveness gives me the opportunity to stop judging, to stop condemning. Forgiveness is really for my benefit, not necessarily for the benefit of other people. Forgiveness offers me peace. When I believe that someone has treated me unjustly, I have placed a judgment against that person, I have condemned that person, I have placed that person beneath me, separate from me.
When I make a judgment about someone, it has no real effect on that person but it does have significant effect on me. My judgments are actually condemnations. A condemnation is like a prophecy. A prophecy is defined as a verbal utterance and goes out into the universe attracting witnesses to its content. In this instance, a judgment against someone, a condemnation of someone, believing someone has done you wrong, these things are all prophecies even though they were never verbally expressed. They were thought and so they have effects just as a prophecy effects.
So when I believe someone has "done me wrong", I have judged that person, I have condemned that person. This prophecy may have no effect on the person to whom it was directed. It does have an effect on me, for by this prophecy I have proclaimed myself judge and jury and executioner.
Forgiveness is the only way out. Forgiveness offers me the opportunity to free the world from my own condemnation of it. I am given many opportunities to practice forgiveness of others, until, someday, I feel free enough to forgive myself.
This is the real power of forgiveness. Forgiveness frees me from the world and the people that I have condemned by my judgments against them. As I have judged them, so I have judged myself.
So, let us practice forgiveness, over and over and over again, until we get it perfectly right.
And then, at last, we will be able to forgive ourselves. We will then be able to experience our Selves as It has been given us, and as we always have been and always will be and are right now.
We are One with the Light of Love, forever and forever un-changeable.
Forgiveness enables us to see this Truth about ourselves, and to overlook the silly, childish illusion in which we appeared to be different, separate, from this Truth.