Removing the obstacles to love's presence, post 6
Hello my dear Friends,
The story I have to share today is an important one. It is important because it talks about a mistake that I made when learning forgiveness . . . a pit that I fell into for a little while. I think it is a common pitfall on the path of release; I share it gladly now so that anyone who has not yet discovered this slight misunderstanding may learn from my mistake and avoid repeating it yourself.
The story begins with sincerity. I really wanted to learn forgiveness, and having learned through the "coat at the bus stop" incident that I had denied my own sense of unworthiness, I was willing to uncover other denied beliefs.
As you know, A Course in Miracles teaches us that we don't know what love is. This is true . . . do not misunderstand me. I am not here to teach that we do know what love is. But I am here to teach that through the ego, we can misunderstand what the Course is teaching us and believe we are practicing the Course when we are continuing to cling to the ego.
As I was saying, the Course teaches that we don't know what love is. I had always felt that I loved my daughter. Above everything else, I loved her. That was my feeling. But as a sincere student of the Course, I was willing to discover that I was wrong. I was willing to discover that I did not know what love is. I turned my special relationship with Jasmine over to the Holy Spirit for healing.
Well, I joke with people that this was when my sweet, very-easy-to-get-along-with daughter turned into the devil its self. She had always been easy to raise until then, and suddenly she seemed to become very, very difficult. She seemed to attack me with kicks and hits of rage. She seemed to hang on me and not let me move freely about the house. And when I tried to get quiet with the Holy Spirit in order to forgive, she seemed to interrupt my quiet time. Jasmine became the obstacle to my peace. She seemed to be the greatest obstacle that stood between me and God.
As this behavior came to me in the world, I began to come face-to-face with an undercurrent of hate within me. Yet, I was afraid of it, so I did not look right at it. The exaggerated behavior continued, and the hatred within me continued to well up. Finally, I could not deny it anymore. I went to my journal wrote this
For a few months now, I’ve been feeling that Jasmine has become more difficult. She frequently treats me with extreme disrespect, and she has become very bossy. She often demonstrates her love by becoming physically controlling. She tries to restrain me from moving about the house like I want. I feel very impatient with her. I’ve also noticed that I feel a lot of rage, which is usually just under the surface, but I occasionally erupt and scream at her with intense hatred. Then she cries, I feel guilty, and I feel as if I have failed as a student of A Course in Miracles.
This was not enough. It was a beginning, but I was not yet getting in touch with my feelings. The extreme behavior continued. About two months later, I sat down and wrote this
I want the peace of God, and I feel that in the past six months, I have made great progress in my mind. But one challenge continues to stumble me. I’ve written about it before, but out of desire to bring it to the truth so that I can see it through the eyes of truth, I want to write about it again. I also want to be very careful to write as honestly as I can. I don’t want to hide anything. I want to truly forgive and see this illusion for the nothingness that it is.
Jasmine infuriates me. She’s mean and hateful towards me, she keeps me from doing the things I want to do, and I feel absolutely enraged towards her. Sometimes I want to scream with the most ferocious roar I can muster. Sometimes I want to slap her across the face. Frequently I want her out of my sight, even out of my life. I don’t feel like I love her any more. At times, I even feel like I hate her. And, I feel like it is all her fault.
As you can see, I was beginning to look at the beliefs that had been denied within my mind. I was beginning to accept that my feelings were not love, but hate.
This story continues for a very long time and takes up a lot of pages in my journal. And through looking at the thought, "I hate my daughter," I was able to make a lot of purposeful discoveries within the mind. But here is where I made the mistake. This is critical. I forgot to let go of the thought, "I hate my daughter."
In accepting that I do not know what love is, I accidentally accepted the idea that what I really am is hate. Hate is my truth. I didn't even notice when this little thought slipped into my mind, but it did. My new belief became, "I don't love Jasmine. I hate her."
I had uncovered a belief in the mind, but I had not seen it as false. I uncovered it and believed it. I felt it was something that I uncovered on my spiritual path, so it must be true.
As you can imagine, things did not get better. I did not feel more peaceful. The struggles with Jasmine increased and intensified. I was no longer denying the hate in my mind. I was looking at it and believing it was my truth.
Then, after a few months, a group of people came into my life via e-mail. They seemed very angry and very confused about love. Attack was their primary method of teaching. They attacked every thought I shared with them, so that every feeling of defense, victimization, unworthiness . . . everything within the mind shows up very quickly.
With my promise to “be led by Love” to the “full and complete realization of Self” in mind, I decided to correspond with these people and use their e-mails to uncover hidden blocks to love in my mind. Although corresponding with them was confusing and painful, with the purpose I put forth, it was useful. I was seeing my reactions to their emails and using that to forgive the thoughts in my mind.
The greatest gift that was given to me was by a female member of this group. She sent me an e-mail in which she described how she perceived me. One of the perceptions that she shared was that she thought I was full of pride. She saw me as proud of my role at work, proud of my spiritual path and proud of my daughter. I had different thoughts about each of these.
I didn't feel that I was proud of my role at work; in fact, I felt ready to give it up, but Spirit was not encouraging me to make a change at that time. Work was a part of my schoolhouse, so I remained.
I knew that I could sometimes be proud of my spiritual path. I could also let myself feel like a failure and have grave doubts about my spiritual path. I saw both of these perceptions as wrong mindedness and among the thoughts in my mind that needed forgiveness.
But most important to me was the thought I had when this woman wrote that she saw me as proud of my daughter. My thought was, “That’s not true. That is definitely just her perception. I hate my daughter.”
Then I saw it. I saw the thought that had just crossed my mind as if it was a fact. I hate my daughter.
Right there I saw how my own wrong mindedness had tricked me.
Immediately upon discovering that belief, I let it go. "There is no cruelty in God and none in me." Hatred within my mind is a false belief.
How could I have believed that as part of my spiritual path, I had to accept the fact that I hated Jasmine or anyone? Love does not hate. That is clear!
That is the classic mistake that I made. I uncovered a denied false belief, but when I uncovered it, I did not see it as false. I saw it as real. So I did not forgive it, I kept it as if it was a part of me.
Forgiveness is about uncovering what is denied, seeing that it is false, and letting it go. These false beliefs are not our truth. And it is through letting them go that we discover our truth, and that is love. We are love. Love is our truth.
I do not hate Jasmine. Granted, I am still learning what I am, so I am still learning what love is, but I do not hate Jasmine or anyone. And when a smidgen of hatred seems to well up inside of me, I see it as false, let it go, and return to peace. I've learned to do it quickly.
I see it, but I don't have to believe it. I see it, and I let it go.