Thursday, November 10, 2011

We Do Not Forgive People "Out There;" We Forgive Thoughts In Our Minds

Recently, my friend, Pat Connor, came across a web site calling for papers for a Conference on this subject: Forgiveness, Probing the Boundaries. The Conference will be held at Mansfield College, Oxford, England, July 11-13, 2012.

The Conference organizers are calling for papers on Forgiveness. The abstracts for the papers are to be limited to 300 words, and they must be submitted by Friday, January 13, 2012. If an abstract is accepted for the Conference, a full draft of the paper must be submitted by Friday, May 11.

I am not sure that I want to prepare a paper to present at the Conference in England, but I like the challenge of capturing in 300 words, or less, what forgiveness means to me. Here is my writing exercise, weighing in at 281 words.

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Forgiveness is an idea terribly misunderstood in this world. It usually takes the form of an individual saying to himself, “She wronged me, but I forgive her.” And in his "forgiveness," he feels superior. This is more like bargaining than forgiving; the wrong may be overlooked this time, but you owe me.

Forgiveness has nothing to do with another person "out there." Forgiveness is letting go of a thought in here, in the mind. Forgiveness is letting go of a thought/image projected outward. These thoughts are based on our individual judgments, stemming from our personal, past memories. A person standing next to you would see the situation differently. Forgiveness is liberation from these thoughts, these personal judgments.

That is why in The Lord’s Prayer, Jesus links trespassing to forgiveness. When I project my thought/images onto another, who is, in fact, the Christ, it is as if I am encroaching on His property, His Christhood.

Forgiveness is a shift from seeing thought/images through the eyes of the ego to seeing the reflection of an inner peace, seeing through the eyes of Christ. It is a shift from a state of mind of conflict, to a state of peace, a shift from seeing projected thought/images, to seeing a bright reflection of the Truth of what we are, the Christ.

Forgiveness is looking at your brother and saying to yourself, “Namaste, the Christ in me greets the Christ in you.”

And now I will walk into the world, inspired by this sentence from today’s Lesson in A Course in Miracles.

I have no purpose for today except
to look upon a liberated world,
set free from all the judgments I have made.

Lesson 312

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