Posted by: spiritteacher | October 8, 2012

THE KEY TO HAPPINESS

“Forgiveness is the key to happiness.” A Course In Miracles

“I will see everyone through forgiving eyes today.”

We feel a wave of anger wash over us. They’re doing it again, we think. And with a whip of righteous justice we lash out to defend ourselves. The rage that fills us leaves a terrible taste. Tension twists our muscles into knots. We turn to others we call friends and spew to them the injustices we perceive and bask in their pity. See, we tell ourselves triumphantly, I’m right and others see it too. But somehow the triumph doesn’t last and before long the angry knots are back and our heart is a heavy weight inside our chest. We may find comfort in joining with others who also feel the world is out to get them, but the comfort is fleeting.

However, though our tolerance for pain is strong, there is a limit. In between the sad, dark moments of our life we see glimmers of light and even laugh out loud in pure joy at times. These moments give us a hint, a tiny thought more like a wisp, a breath of sweetness that suggests that even though we have chosen mild to moderate to deep dark fear and judgment for our main existence, there could just possibly be something else.

One day our enemies poke us with their sharp sticks into our wounded spots and push our pain buttons and we begin to react without thinking as we always do, when something stops us. A voice inside our head, a feeling – something. Instead of lashing out, we look at these brothers or sisters who are the bane of our existence and we wonder for an instant, why are they doing this?  Why do they want to hurt me? Why do I accept it?

And with these questions comes full blown, a light inside our mind, a dawning like a new day has been offered and we see as clearly as though someone had just washed the window of our heart that these sisters or these brothers are not trying to hurt us.  They are simply trying to ease their own pain and we just happen to be there. We whisper to ourselves, “Why it’s not about me at all.”  And now we know without a doubt that unconsciously they are calling out to us in fear, in sorrow and in hurt. They unconsciously are crying out for help.  Each time before when they had asked, instead of helping we chose to join them in their suffering. But this time it is different. Something has shifted inside of us. It’s just a thought, a tiny spark of willingness, a small surge of hope.   

“I’m sorry,” we whisper to our adversaries, or we may only say it silently inside our head, “I’m sorry you are hurting so.  How can I help?”  God hears our silent question as a prayer and answers with deep gratitude. His Holy presence, powerful and limitless, changeless and eternal fills us up and lifts us to a place where we are at home. Its familiarity reminds us that it was always there. With tears of joy we whisper, “Thank you,” knowing in this moment that our life has changed forever.

When we don’t react in the old familiar way, when we refuse to join in the sick battle of poking sticks into open wounds, the other ones may be startled for a moment. Or not believing that the relationship has transformed, they may push and poke a while longer. But each time we respond with gentleness and in a calm and quiet manner, lovingly detached. In time they recognize that we are no longer playing our part. If their pain is too great they may find another partner who will agree to dance this dance with them. Or if they are ready, they may take our hand and follow us upon our path to healing. Either way we will be at peace.

We will understand what we didn’t know before. There is a key we have overlooked that opens the door to a whole new world for us. It is called FORGIVENESS. And when we put this key into the heart we have kept locked for so long, it will be clear to us that forgiveness is just another word for HAPPINESS and LOVE.

 


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