Friday, November 11, 2011

On Forgiveness

One of the items on my 101 In 1001 list is to work through A Course In Miracles again.  The Course is a self study program of spiritual psychotherapy, first published by the Foundation For Inner Peace in 1975.  At its center is the universal truth that love is all there is.  The course offers but one path to this universal truth, however if it is yours, you will know it immediately.

I first gained knowledge of the Course while wandering through a bookstore one day.  A copy of Marianne Williamson's book, A Return To Love, Reflections on the Principals of A Course in Miracles, was on display along with several recordings of her lectures on the subject.  One of the lectures in particular, On Death And Dying, was impossible for me to walk away from.  I had just lost my best friend to a car accident, had lost my mother a few years earlier, and I was a bit mad at the universe.  Listening to that lecture, then all of them, reading the book and studying the course, saved me.  This perhaps sounds dramatic, but it was the opposite.  The miracle for me was a simple shift in perception, a surrender of fear and an acceptance of love. 

As I wrote about last week in my post about The Four Agreements, I sometimes struggle with taking things personally.  I realized that was why reworking the course made my list; it shouldn't be something that is done and set aside, but rather an ongoing process. 

And this brings us to forgiveness.  The course teaches that forgiveness is the key to inner peace because it is the mental technique we use to transform our thoughts from fear to love.  Forgiveness is selective remembering ~ a conscious decision to focus on love and let the rest go.  As written in the course, "Forgiveness takes away what stands between your brother and yourself."

With the holidays fast approaching, the practice of forgiveness is just what I need to get into the spirit.  How about you ~ is there room for forgiveness in your life?

xoxo, Anita

{The picture above is another shot for the tree project on my 101 in 1001 list, that I shot earlier today.  I'm going to have an album of tree photos by the time I'm done!}


  1. Beautiful tree and a beautiful post.

  2. What an interesting topic! It's taken me almost a day to respond to this because I had to give it so much thought (also helped that my computer gave itself an extended time out). My conscious part thinks that I do not have any long-held, deeply entrenched forgiveness issues. I tend to over-empathize with others so if they do something to upset me, I feel like I understand why they did that and surely their problems are greater than mine.
    But the subconscious is always another matter: there are probably all kinds of issues that I'm unaware of, and I may be suffering from so many deep-seated hurts and angers that I'm all tied up in knots and barely functional. That would explain many of my social anxieties and my preference to stay home by myself.
    So you've given me a lot to think about, as well as another interesting book to add to my list.

  3. Katrina ~ don't you just love it when your computer does that? :-)
    I'm so glad that my post interested you! You seem pretty functional to me; writing, gardening and sewing so well. But I know what you mean; I've been through a few things that I've felt virtually paralyzed by. The world can be so brutal! And people can be so very cruel. I, like you, am very happy to spend many of my days at home alone. Of course, we are both lucky to be blessed with a partner to join us at the end of the day!
    I think you will enjoy 'A Course In Miracles'. And you don't need to read it in a linear fashion; it lends itself well to flipping around to what feels most relevant to you.
    xo, Anita


Dear friends,
Thank you for taking the time to comment! ! I want this to be a space of free and open dialog, within the boundaries of respect and basic human kindness. Whether we are in agreement or not, all comments will be published so long as they meet that requirement.
xo, Anita