Why is it so hard to forgive!!!! First of all I would like to put forward the definition of forgiveness in ACIM. Forgiveness is to overlook something, let in flow on by as though it never happened because in reality (i.e.God’s world) it never happened. Jesus anticipated all our objections. We say, “Wait a minute. What if someone is killed or raped! How can you say that didn’t happen? And how can you forgive that?” That’s the question the ego loves and it thinks there is no answer to those questions except to accept victimization!! Once we accept victimization we have fallen deep into the ego’s system of thought and we will never be able to forgive. Knowing this, Jesus allowed himself to be crucified. He called it, “the last needless journey the sonship ever needs to make.” In allowing himself to be so cruelly tortured in the eyes of the world he showed us the truth. Instead of identifying with what the body was going through, he identified with his spirit which cannot be hurt, cannot be tortured, cannot be harmed in any way. That shift of identification changes crucifixion to resurrection, not the resuscitation of a dead body, but a living spirit identified as the Son of His Father. He asks us to follow his example so that when we are mistreated in this life, far less than he was in most cases, we identify with our spirit and refuse to accept the position of a victim. On the cross he said for our benefit, “Father forgive them for they know not what they do.” Notice what he didn’t say, such as, “How could all of you do this to me?” Or, “You will all burn in hell for what you did to me,” or “Karma’s a bitch. Wait til you get yours.” Those are things the EGO says and wants you to say.
Our lessons are in relationships and how often do we find people playing the victim in relationships? “He hurt me once. I’ll never let him hurt me again.” Are you SURE he hurt you? Have you forgotten that projections makes perception? When you say, “He hurt me,” you are describing the poverty of your inner state. You could have interpreted the event differently. As the Course says, “I could see peace instead of this.” If Jesus could see peace in his crucifixion, you can see peace in a relationship. But what about rape or abuse? Everybody has their favorite crime which they think proves victimization. It doesn’t.
I knew a Christian woman once who was raped but she took a totally different and Christ-like view of what took place. She had nothing but compassion for the man who did the deed. She even described the event this way. “He broke into my house and he did what he thought he had to do and then he left.” She forgave the man because she refused to be a victim. She also showed the richness, the Christ-likeness within her by choosing to perceive the event the way she did. Tara Singh, our beloved teacher of ACIM, said often to us, “Regardless of what my brother does to me I will not hate him for it.” Tara Singh was a Christed man. He knew to “resist not evil.” Don’t react.
Another aspect of forgiveness as seen in ACIM is that when we “let it go, let it flow on by as though it never happened,” we don’t break relationships!! The ego wants you to say, “OK I forgive you but that is the end of our relationship. I don’t want to ever see you again.” The ego loves this because it reinforces its primary desire of SEPARATION!! When you say, “i forgive you, but I need my space from you now. Our time is over,” you are not forgiving at all. You are in the Ego, justifying separation and calling it your “space.” “Oh, I just need my space now.” Space is separation. No counseling was ever successful when the couple stayed AWAY from counseling!!! But that is the state of mind of the “victim.” “You HURT me and I am running away from you.” Really? Is that our model from Jesus? Hardly!! You have to see this if you ever want to forgive and if you don’t forgive you will go deeper and deeper into illusions and the “unwillingness” to remember God’s love. I didn’t say that. Jesus did!! Reactions happen within relationships because we are often in fear rather than peace. But if you learn to forgive by seeing that in TRUTH (i.e. in God’s world) nothing has happened, you can forgive on the fly, overlook things quickly, and the relationship goes on as a classroom for learning. Every time we break a relationship because we scream that someone HURT us, we send ourselves back into kindergarten. We will have to do the whole thing over until we choose for right-mindedness!!!
Someone said to me, “I have a pattern of choosing the wrong man for me.” The first thing you want to say is, “Oh, how terrible for you dear. Well you know a good man is really hard to find.” That would be the ego response. Keep the conflict going. The only real response is, “You are drawing the ‘wrong man’ to you by perceiving you are a victim. If you want to get out of this time warp, choose a man and perceive him as God created him.” Then it won’t matter if he is young or old, muscular, or any of the other external traits we use to judge a piece of meat!! But the question is, Can you break through your unwillingness to change by remembering God’s love for you as your own identity? Or will you just wallow in your life being a victim, always looking for the right man and always perceiving you got a bad one again!! How many lifetimes do we have to go through this class? Always projecting problems, reacting out of fear and claiming to be the victim? How many times have YOU been here going through the same drills and making the same ego choices? Often Lightworkers are just as egotistical as anyone. THEY have a claim to higher knowledge to justify their perception of victimhood!! Hmmmm….seems few people want to follow Jesus’ example and leadership! Our lessons can be learned joyfully but if they are not learned joyfully they will be learned by pain! Something happened in your relationship? Forgive it. Let it go as though it never happened. This is the only real way denial can help you. We deny that we can be hurt, tortured or crucified. And now comes the humor!! There has to be humor. All of this “stuff” that you are so mad about is just a silly dream. The dreamer has awakened in Reality. We are as we always were. Nothing has happened to God’s Son. But in the unfolding of the illusion of time, the dream appears to be played out and take “time.” We can speed up “time” if we laugh at the tiny mad idea that God’s Son could be “hurt,” or victimized in any way. Laugh as loud as you can. This is the greatest joke of all “time.”