What is Forgiveness?

Thoughts on “What is Forgiveness?” in the ACIM Workbook

(Full text of “What is Forgiveness?” in the workbook)

Forgiveness is your ticket to freedom from identification with form, constellation and custom.

Forgiveness seems like a favor you grant someone out of the goodness of your heart for as long as your circumstances allow it. But that view is a distortion. Forgiveness is not something you give or grant in response to something that has happened.

Forgiveness is the doorway to freedom that you go through when you unclench your grip on a given situation and set it free. What does that mean?

It means that you understand that creation is source in expression, and as such shares source’s attributes: love, light, peace, freedom, joy, compassion, justice, and so forth. Creation is all that source is, expressed in terms of place and time. As the expression of source, creation cannot be anything other than perfection in expression. As it extends and expands creation meets and sees itself and calls itself forward in ever perfect and joyful newness. That means that the need for forgiveness is a nonsensical phrase. It means, that any perception of imperfection is a delusion.

Where does a delusion come from? It is caused by a misunderstanding regarding creation and regarding your own identity as part of creation. Rather than understanding that you are part and parcel of the creative stream of source, unlimited in potential, flowing into expression, you have mistakenly attached your sense of self to this or that form in expression. As form is determined by time and space and is therefore limited, the identification will soon feel like a restriction and cause unease. These feelings project themselves as images onto the perfect flow of creative principles in expression. When that happens things in the world seem to be amiss, and you will use the images you see as the justification for that assessment. And now you have got the dynamics backwards. You are taking your cue from the distorted images you yourself have projected onto reality by the self-limiting identification with form and you are caught in a self-reinforcing loop.

The way out of the loop is by recognizing that you are in fact caught in a loop. The way to break the hold of the loop is by understanding that the images you see that so sorely seem to need forgiving are not objectively true. You have created them and they are only true in the sense that they show you your own inner dynamics. They reflect the way you have allowed your mind to stray from the focus on creative qualities on their way from source into expression. The way to dissolve the images is by letting go of your focus on the unworthiness of the images and by readjusting the focus of your mind: You set the image free, thereby entering the doorway to freedom. Freedom from self-limiting identification with form, constellation and custom. Freedom in a renewed focus on embracing your true nature – love, justice, forbearance, peace, and so forth – and on joining creation in its extension and expansion in ever perfect newness.

(Related: blogpost ACIM lesson 193)

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