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Love your enemies, we all deserve to be forgiven

  • By Paul West
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  • 4 minutes 28 seconds
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Are you guilty? Do you deserve forgiveness? Have you repented of your 'sin'?

If you are guilty of something, the very best thing you can do is to reclaim your innocence as soon as possible. If what you were doing before was incorrect, then returning to a state of correction is the best possible atonement you can offer.

If someone truly had a sane perception of you, they would ask that you stop being guilty and instead hold the light of innocence so that both you and they can be healed. Right? The greatest gift that a victimizer could give is to cease victimizing. Right? So to cease victimizing you have to stop choosing sin or guilt or fear. Which means you must choose innocence.

So while often we want our victimizers to be punished, to pay, to suffer, to be guilty, as though this somehow is 'better' or is justice or is a way of making up for what they did, this really is self defeating.

It is your brothers role to provide salvation and healing to you. He can only do that if he also SHARES in salvation and healing. The unhealed cannot heal. The guilty cannot provide innocence. You can't have it both ways - you can't have your vicitmizer be guilty while at the same time wanting them to 'take back' what they did. 

You also can't hold guilt against a victimizer and expect to feel free of guilt yourself. How about that?

Here's the new rule.

Either you are both guilty or you are both innocent, but never one or the other.

If the world ran more according to this truth we would be far better off. An offering of guilt from a victimizer following an attack is nothing more than rubbing salt into the wound. Why would you want them to be guilty on top of having already attacked you? Guilt is an attack. You THINK that the attack of guilt is isolated to the person, and they can be guilty but not you. This is completely false and will totally undermine your sense of safety.

If a person is guilty, the guilt attacks them and you equally. Just as when someone is sick, the sickness is not limited to them - it is a statement of attack AND an attempt to infect everyone else. Not to induce guilt in saying that, but the Course does explain that sickness is an attempt to prove that everyone is sick. And not just bodily sickness - mind sickness, emotional sickness, etc.

The ONLY way for you to truly be happy and peaceful and to receive love and healing and be free of all effects of an attack, is to see the attacker as innocent and to encourage them to be innocent.

So yes, is sounds completely nonsense.... you just attacked me, ok, please revert to being loving and love me instead. Instead of... you just attacked me, you horrible asshole, you're so guilty and I hate you. Well, good luck with that self hate.

And if you are the victimizer, do you really think you're going to be better off or are doing the victim a service by being guilty all the time? Like, how much time is needed for you to be in shame and guilt in order to atone? A lifetime? At what point is it enough? When do you deserve forgiveness. You ALWAYS deserve forgiveness but you HAVE to claim and own it for yourself, because nobody, including the victim, is going to give you that permission of entitlement.

If you've ever made a significant enough mistake you'll know from experience, that people love to use you as a skapegoat and to jump on the bandwagon of unforgiveness. They want you to be guilty, so that you are the one who gets the punishment. What about THEIR sin? They're hardly being an example of love. At some point you have to realize, not only that you are the one who chose to be guilty and ashamed, but also therefore you are the one who has to reclaim innocence. Nobody can do it for you.

We all deserve to be innocent. We all deserve love. True `repentance` of sin, IF we REALLY want people to truly atone and repent, MUST mean that we allow them to be our SAVIOR. We can't hold a grudge, and we can't keep demanding their punishment. This only keeps ourselves imprisoned. IF we really want atonement and we really want healing, we HAVE to allow the attacker to be seen as innocent, otherwise there is no hope whatsoever and we're just getting lost in the ego.

Yes it runs against what we're used to. It runs against the ego. It goes against the societal normal. It runs counter to our normal ego emotional reactions. But if we want freedom and we truly want healing rather than suffering, we have to forgive ourselves AND everyone else no matter what. We HAVE to ask for a gift of innocence from all of our enemies, otherwise to hold them imprisoned is just to attack ourselves indirectly.

Love is not guilt. We don't need an offering of guilt or a performance of shame to make up for what someone did to us. We need THEM to heal. We need THEM to return to peace and love. Otherwise, how are we going to be able to get there ourselves?

Love your enemies. We are all one.
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