A Course in Miracles Blog

Sometimes it's very hard to forgive someone

  • By Paul West
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  • 6 minutes 15 seconds
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Sometimes it's very hard to forgive someone. You become fixated on what they did to you, or what they were supposed to do that they didn't do. And sometimes this might've been something that occurred over a very long period of time, such that you can't even imagine life without this grievance. You just can't see how you can forgive this person.

This way of perceiving someone is very hard to get past especially if the person is important or valuable to you. And especially if your involvement with them has been largely a 'special relationship', or a victim/victimizer role. When all your focus is on how they affected you, you become blocked and unconscious as if there is no other way of looking at this.

So there you are, your mind is fixated on this person, on what they did to hurt you, and you just can't seem to get past this experience. One thing you do need to do is allow yourself to FEEL the feelings that have arisen as a result of what seemed to happen. By not feeling it you are in profound denial. Never mind that you had anything to do with how you perceive the situation, but to even deny that you feel hurt at all is a whole other layer of denial on top of it. Pretending it didn't happen when your whole being is screaming that 'it did' is an attempt to protect yourself from it, to hide it in order to pretend it is healed. But it does not go away, and it will eat a hole in you until you acknowledge it.

So as you gather a little willingness to explore 'healing', you can begin to at first allow yourself to acknowledge more of yourself, of what you are, and of what you believe has happened to you. Let yourself feel. The feeling has to come up for release. Up and out. This isn't necessarily forgiveness, but it is a form of catharsis to release old stuck energies which do obscure your perception. It's hard to see someone with innocence or calm when you're really feeling angry and hurt. Acknowledging and feeling the feelings, by FEELING them, not describing them, is a step forward in your healing.

Once some of that is past, you have cleared the way to experience a new way of perceiving. You may already have experienced cognitive shifts as a result of releasing emotion, like clouds clearing away which expose the sun. But you need to go deeper. Because this whole dynamic of "they did this to me" leaves you a victim, and if you stay there, you are stuck. Almost all feelings besides LOVE arise from perceiving yourself unfairly treated, or outright hurt. Fears, doubts, anger, hurt, suffering, pain, embarrassment, abandonment, etc all arise from 'its happening to me'. You need to move past this way of looking at the situation. But this is where it's hard, because it requires some form of detachment or greater perspective.

This is where Holy Spirit comes in because you're now willing to change your mind/perception about what happened and potentially see it differently, even if you can't yet see how that's possible. Until you take that inward journey you won't discover the answers and clarity that you need. You must seek reunion with God by joining with Holy Spirit and asking for His Help to overlook the way you've been seeing.

Now, what you have to get past is the belief and perception that ALL of your upset is the direct result of, and put there by, the other person. That it's their fault. That they are the sole cause. That you did absolutely nothing to ask for it at any time. That's irresponsibility. You MUST take some responsibility, even if a little at first. You can't be free from the victim role if you are not responsible. So let yourself be a little willing, however small, to open up to the possibility that there might be another way to look at this. Maybe you participated somehow. Maybe you made a decision or chose a way of experiencing the situation, which resulted in the evidence of hurt that you're left with.

Maybe you choose to AGREE with what the person was doing. Maybe you choose to BELIEVE that you deserved the treatment they gave. Maybe you chose to change your own sense of who you are, based on what they seemed to demonstrate was true of you. Maybe at some point in between what they 'offered' and what you 'took' from what happened, there was a little interval of choice where you came to your OWN CONCLUSION about what this means. Maybe you therefore did this formation of a false belief to yourself, USING the situation by taking it personally. Your belief in it, your agreement with it, your perception that it is the truth having lost sight of the real truth about you, WAS the 'attack' that you perpetrated against yourself, regardless of what the person modeled for you.

Ultimately you're 100% responsible for choosing. You made up the belief you're left with, on your own. Maybe you didn't know any better. Maybe you were too young. Maybe you forgot you are unconditionally lovable. Maybe nobody told you and you lost track of who you really are. But if you're 100% responsible for AGREEING to this punishment, then you also have the POWER to "choose again". And you can do that at any time that you are willing to admit to choosing this belief, and being willing to SURRENDER it to Holy Spirit, because it is simply false.

But you can't tell a belief is false just by saying it is. You need to know what is true. You need to transfer your allegiance and faith. You need to therefore open up to a greater truth, perhaps reminding yourself of what is true of you, or how God views you, or what God thinks of this false belief, or how Holy Spirit sees you in His Light. Ultimately, to FORGIVE, you need to get `into` the light of the Holy Spirit, at least a little bit, so that it can "shed light" on your belief and SHOW YOU that it is false. False beliefs simply ARE false, and you only need to see them clearly to recognize this. It's not seeing them clearly that makes you trust them. In the light of forgiveness you can witness the obvious fact that what you thought was true of you, is completely untrue, and THEN you will be perfectly willing to let it go. You'll know it was a ridiculous, untrue belief, not in line with the Truth of God. Or in other words, you'll see the VALUE of the real truth about you, and the LACK of value of what is false, and therefore RECOGNIZE that what is false does not even apply to you.

It doesn't apply to you. Because you're innocent and holy and forgiven already. You're loved by God. You're safe. You're at peace. You're with Holy Spirit. You're whole and healed. That's the truth. This event never happened. The person never really did anything to you. You did this to yourself and now you can see that you don't want to keep doing so. So you surrender. You surrender the false sense that is MADE FROM this false belief.. this false identity that isn't a true description of you. It wasn't really who you are anyway.

Then you remember who you are as God's Innocent Child and receive HEALING.

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