Musings on Forgiveness

“Forgive them; for they know not what they do” goes the saying, but what exactly are we urged to forgive and whom?

Half of the world thinks forgiveness is a weakness and that it’s our duty to remember and avenge. And the other half is happy to forgive only so that it can show its moral mettle over us, the poor sinners. And very few seem to realize that true forgiveness has nothing to do with either of those.

So, what does it mean to forgive and what are we really forgiving? Are we condoning bad things when we forgive the perpetrators? And, are we really superior to those whom we forgive?

In the context of our Oneness, the big question really is whom are we forgiving when we do forgive. If there is really only One of us, isn’t it outselves that we forgive? If you ever hope to find forgiveness for yourself, you must first practice it on others. How otherwise will you be able to recognize it when it comes to you?

Yet, no matter how much I talk myself into oneness, it is still difficult to practice forgiveness and non-judgment. People continue to say or do egregious things that make it difficult to let the judgment go and invite the forgiveness in. How could they? Why wouldn’t they? How wrong is that?

When all those thoughts of indignation and outrage begin to crowd in my mind and I need an out from my mental spinning wheels, I switch my focus. I say, yes, this might be so, but it is not a sin, it is just a mistake. And one can always correct mistakes. I just have to sit patiently and reserve judgment until the correction appears. I do not need to lose sleep or peace of mind or beat myself to the ground over it.

Would that count as true forgiveness? Or, is true forgiveness the realization that there is nothing to forgive? I am not quite certain yet, but here is some food for thought:

Forgiveness … is still, and quietly does nothing. It offends no aspect of reality, nor seeks to twist it to appearances it likes. It merely looks, and waits, and judges not.

Peace to you my friend!

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