ACIM Workbook Lesson 134 – for Saturday, May 14, 2011
Affirmation: “Let me perceive forgiveness as it is.”
“The strength of pardon is its honesty, which is so uncorrupted that it sees illusions as illusions, not as truth. It is because of this that it becomes the undeceiver in the face of lies; the great restorer of the simple truth. By its ability to overlook what is not there, it opens up the way to truth, which has been blocked by dreams of guilt. Now are you free to follow in the way your true forgiveness opens up to you. For if one brother has received this gift of you, the door is open to yourself. (WB249)”
Often in this blog I have discussed the ease with which forgiveness or pardon can be offered if we realize that what we are seeing that is painful is actually illusion. We have in our Self not been hurt at all. We are invulnerable in our real essence. And if we recognize that the attack or anger that is coming toward us is the result of insanity on the part of others (and ourselves), we will go still farther toward understanding the absolute necessity of forgiveness. It keeps our rights protected. It is the only sane response to distress based on error (a Text tenet).
Forgiveness, it is not often noted, will help us to feel better, even euphoric–once we see the advantages that accrue. Others will see that we are not retaliating, and it is quite possible that those others will actually apologize for their words or deeds. The fact that forgiveness, offered freely, will help us to feel better in not mentioned in A Course in Miracles, but a little experimentation will show us that it is a very practical consequence of the right word or deed. We feel worse when we retaliate with words or deeds. While there may be a momentary high (as Kenneth Wapnick, scholar of ACIM, notes) due to the false belief that we have gotten rid of the anger, we have not actually gotten rid of anything. We are only venting, and venting is pain that will not be allow relief from bad feelings. Learning through pain, Jesus says, is only temporary. Learning through rewards is lasting. (These are Text tenets.)
It is important that we not stare too long at the perceived harm. If we make it real to ourselves, how can we overlook it (a Text tenet)? Overlook from the beginning, if possible, and if it is already too late to do that, then ask for a new beginning for the day (a Text tenet). Then our perception of illusions will fade away, and we will know that, while we have felt bad, this sort of feeling does not have to last. Indeed, this bad feeling will subside momentarily–and for the rest of the day, if we do not recall to mind the harm that we thought we perceived and that we fought, internally, against.
Help me today to recognize that this world is all illusion, and that regardless of what to me or others in my circle, actually the real Self has not been damaged in any way. Help me to realize and not make real any attack or anger that is directed at me. Help me to overlook.
I would live a pleasant day in Your eyes today. I would give You, within me, a good day. Help me to do this as I follow the guiding hand of the Holy Spirit.