Learning to forgive with Christ Vision

Sunday, Jan 26, 2020 1856 words 8 mins 14 secs
An A Course in Miracles Blog  © 2020 Paul West

"To forgive is to OVERLOOK"

"Everything the body sees is an illusion."

Years ago when I began the course, I thought I understood forgiveness. I thought it basically meant not blaming people, and trying to learn that everyone is innocent. It's kind of that. But over time and with deeper study my grasp of forgiveness kept expanding.

I realized at some point forgiveness is a state, a high state of mind, in concert with true perception, and that our efforts "to forgive" move us in the direction of that state. At some point we would achieve a truly forgiving state of mind as an end result or goal. And this state recognizes there is no real sin.

And so then "doing forgiveness" to me was more to do with purification, healing, release, not judging, taking responsibility, embracing the secret of salvation etc. I made effort to forgive myself and others through various means and to move out of fear into guilt, out of guilt into sin, and out of sin into innocence. But this still wasn't the whole story.

It gradually became clearer that the entire world needs to be overlooked. Particularly because the world itself is an illusion, it wasn't enough to undo my mistaken ideas and beliefs about it, somehow I had to learn to "see past" the world to a light or reality beyond it. And this is significantly challenging. The world hangs like a veil before the face of Christ, a granite block of sin, designed to tempt you to believe everything you see.

It became clearer that the entire physical universe, all forms of matter, all bodies and planets and objects, are there as temptations, appearances and deceptions. That seeing something seem to happen in the flesh was in fact untrue and unreal. That people are not bodies, but something beyond their physical form that I'm meant to see. And so my efforts shifted toward trying not to be deceived by the world in general.

This is where things seem to become quite difficult. When you consider that we've lived in a physical body for many years, assuming the world is real, reacting to everything the body senses as if it's happening as proof, there is a lot of conditioning to undo. And it starts to go into a territory where you have to literally question fundamental reality, whether events are even really happening, whether sick bodies even exist, whether all of the hierarchy of illusions really testifies to bad things happening or if it's just some awful dream. And that means questioning even what your body senses say is happening.

For me lately the challenge has been intensified because I've been presented with some very difficult "physical" scenarios with my wife that present powerful temptations. Temptations to believe that awful things are happening, that there is physical loss, that body parts are malfunctioning, that there is seriousness and heaviness and fear-inducing problems. I've been extremely pushed and impressed upon by the apparent reality of these horrors.

Just the mere act of seeing something physically "wrong" and believing it is truthful, real, happening, or a danger, is enough to incite fear and reactions. When the world is dangling "proof" that sin is happening, attack is happening, that bodies seem to be real, in front of your face, proving that sin is real, what do you do? Because this is where we really get into some major need for forgiveness.

It has become more and more apparent that everything physical is an illusion. All body states are fictional. The ego uses forms to hold the idea of death in front of our noses, asking us to believe that it's really happening. It asks us to regard people as bodies as though, when parts of the body are threatened or lost, the person is threatened or lost. And if you buy it, you will be very upset. And this is why the world is so unhappy.

Presented with a torrent of nightmarish happenings, my challenge has been to try to learn to disbelieve them. To not buy the appearance. To trust a bigger plan. To see beyond the short-term nonsense. To not believe it means something. To not go into fear as a reaction to my own belief that something is very wrong. From what I've been shown through these trials and lessons, not only that our immortal reality the only truth, but also everything bodies testify to is an illusion.

My wife had to have an amputation of her left foot. At first this was horrifying. Just the idea of it made me guilty and afraid. I feared the "loss of her" because if her foot was gone, part of her was really gone. That's what the ego teaches through form. Physical loss means something real has been destroyed, which automatically leads to loss and grief. And so I entered into loss and grief and had to struggle to get out of it. It was induced by the belief that what the body was showing was true of her. That a) she was a body, a b) she was attacked and really suffering and c) it was an irreversible sin.

This is where forgiveness really meets the road. I've had to learn to try to see past and disbelieve all physical events, happenings, states, conditions, people's expert opinions about how serious it is, the physical testimony that "it really is happening", all proof, and all suggestion by the ego world that something is terribly wrong. It is not easy. The level of temptation has been so high and so frequent that I've been thrown far off-center and struggling to get back a sense of truth.

But I do realize through all of this that the opportunity has presented me with a "test", a way to find out if I will be willing to not buy into this problem and laugh it off with love, perhaps to even become miraculous and healing through that love, or whether I will sink into fear and forgetfulness. To say that the road has been extremely bumpy is an understatement. And so the challenge to forgive is to NOT BELIEVE that any of this is even happening at all. To disregard it as illusions and as lies.

Somehow through the clearing smoke, it seems I disbelieve the physical with more certainty now. And as I see other people's sick bodies, somehow I now see them with the same attitude that I see my wife's body with. Her example has changed my perception. Whatever the education has been, it now applies to a transformation in my vision. I can't by any means claim this is total or even halfway to where it needs to be, but it's clear that forgiveness has evolved way past what I thought it was, and now onto a more living experience of not being deceived by form. Even the suggestion of physical death now seems like a ridiculous lie.

It's no small undertaking. We literally are being asked to not believe ANYTHING in this world. That all forms, appearances, bodies, objects, are mere illusory appearances designed to tempt us, causing us to have to learn NOT to be deceived by them. It's very difficult to not buy illusions when someone close to you is seriously ill with visible and "serious" physical symptoms. But this is what we have to do. The body is a denial of the truth. We have to deny the denial of the truth. We have to learn not to buy a single thing the world says is happening, and look beyond the world to the light. We are safe in God, merely dreaming of exile.

In this view, our task is to overlook the world, which transforms it into the forgiven world. And a forgiven world cannot last. "A forgiven world cannot last. It was the home of bodies but forgiveness looks past bodies." We look beyond the forgiven world, beyond the real world, to the Kingdom of God. We regard the Kingdom as the only reality. We are vigilant only for its truth and immortality. We are not deceived by lies of mortal death or suffering. Nothing that the body senses can distract us from an unwavering fixation on God's truth. We are under no laws buy God's, and only the truth is true and this world is not true.

This is what we are asked to do. This is how we forgive. We overlook the false world we made and see it not. We ask to see only the reality of the Kingdom. Nothing else is real. Nothing else has value. Nothing else attracts us. Nothing else satisfies. Only in the forgetting of the world and the complete overlooking of its transparent veil of lies can we look upon the face of Christ and finally move beyond to our True Home.

"A Son of God is happy only when he knows he is WITH God. That is the only environment in which he will not experience strain, because that is where he belongs. It is also the only environment that is worthy of him, because his own worth is beyond ANYTHING that he can make.

Consider the Kingdom which you have made (Earth), and judge its worth fairly. Is it worthy to be a home for a Child of God? Does it protect his peace, and shine love upon him? Does it keep his heart untouched by fear, and allow him to give always without any sense of loss? Does it teach him that this giving is his joy, and that God Himself thanks him for his giving?

That is the only environment in which you can be happy. You cannot make it, anymore than you can make yourselves. But it has been created for you (Heaven), as you were created for it. God watches over His children and denies them nothing."

"Christ's vision has one law. It does not look upon a body, and mistake it for the Son whom God created. It beholds a light beyond the body; an idea beyond what can be touched, a purity undimmed by errors, pitiful mistakes, and fearful thoughts of guilt from dreams of sin. It sees no separation. And it looks on everyone, on every circumstance, all happenings and all events, without the slightest fading of the light it sees."

"A world forgiven cannot last. It was the home of bodies. But forgiveness looks past bodies. This is its holiness; this is how it heals. The world of bodies is the world of sin, for only if there were a body is sin possible. From sin comes guilt as surely as forgiveness takes all guilt away. And once all guilt is gone what more remains to keep a separated world in place? For place has gone as well, along with time. Only the body makes the world seem real, for being separate it could not remain where separation is impossible. Forgiveness proves it is impossible because it sees it not. And what you then will overlook will not be understandable to you, just as its presence once had been your certainty.

This is the shift that true perception brings: What was projected out is seen within, and there forgiveness lets it disappear."

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