"To change the world we must change the thoughts, the beliefs that have made it. And to change the beliefs, we must change the image we have of ourselves - the source of all we think is true. Guilt and separation are the components of our belief now and the purpose of this world is to support that belief. Forgiveness is the practice of examining and discarding the judgments that support and reinforce these beliefs. This frees the mind to accept the Presence of the God Self, our "real" Self and a Vision of a more real world to learn and practice thoughts of Oneness." [Tom Carpenter, The Miracle of Real Forgiveness]
Christ Returns - Speaks His Truth
"So I prayed, passionately asking forgiveness for being weak enough to indulge my own fantasies and seeking my own way of doing things." [Christ Returns - Speaks His Truth, Letter 1, page 20]
"Never betray the earth. Even in your highest glory, don't forget the earth; it is your mother. And don't forget the people. They may have been hindrances, they may have been enemies to you; they may have tried in every way to destroy you; they may have already crucified you, stoned you to death, or poisoned you - but don't forget them. Whatever they have done, they have done in an unconscious state. And if you cannot forgive them, who is going to forgive them? And your forgiving them is going to enrich you immeasurably." [Zarathustra]
"For as we forgive, we are forgiven; as we condemn others, we are ourselves condemned. Thus in patience condemn not, neither find fault; not condoning, not agreeing, but let thine own life so shine that others, seeing thy patience, knowing thy understanding, comprehending thy peace, may take hope." [Cayce (3459-1)]
"Know in self that the greater part is ever within self when trouble arises between self and daughter, between self and neighbor, between self and husband. For that we think, that we give voice to in condemnation of others, we will find within our own selves. For the Lord thy God is one. And where ye condemn, so are you condemned. As ye forgive, so are ye forgiven." [Cayce (3457-1)]
. . "Except ye become as little children, ye shall in no wise enter in." Unless you can be just as forgiving, unless you can find it just as easy to forget slights and slurs and things that would make afraid those who would judge others. For with what measure ye mete, it is measured to thee again. Even as He, the Master gave, the faults ye find in others are reflected in thine own mirror of life. And as He gave, "Cast the beam out of thine eye that ye may see to take the mote from thy brother's eye." [Cayce (3395-2)]
"Who gains by being forgiven and by forgiving? The one that forgives is lord even of him that he forgives." [Cayce (585-2)]
"Hold rather to those things in which, in thy dealings with thy fellowman, ye may see only the pure, the good! For until ye are able to see within the life and activities of those ye have come to hate the most, something ye would worship in thy Creator, ye haven't begun to think straight." [Cayce (1776-1)]
"For only as ye forgive those who have blamed thee without a cause, who have spoken vilely of thee without reason, can the giver of life and light forgive thee - even though He came into experience that ye, even ye, might know thy place with God, with thy Maker." [Cayce (3660-1)]
"Then what are you grumbling about because you dislike your mother? She dislikes you as much, but change this into love. Be kind, be gentle, be patient, be longsuffering, for if thy God was not longsuffering with thee, what chance would you have?" [Cayce (5081-1)]
In fact, to ask that question is enough proof that the disciple has not understood. It is not a question of how many times: forgiveness simply means you accept the person as he is, you still love him the way he is. Forgiveness means that you don't judge him, that you are non-judgmental. But ordinarily we think forgiveness means you know that he has done wrong, still you forgive him. First you judge and then you forgive. Your forgiveness is false. Real forgiveness has no judgment. It never says, "No, you have done wrong, but still I forgive you." It simply accepts the person as he is. There is no grudge, no complaint, no grumbling. There is no question really of forgiving because there is no anger in the first place. (underline added)
But the man asked, "How many times?" Buddha said to him, "At least seven times." The man said, "Okay."
The way he said okay, Buddha said, "Wait - seventy-seven times, or better still, seven hundred and seventy-seven times." But even seven hundred and seventy-seven times will be exhausted - then what about seven hundred and seventy-eight? Then he will take revenge and with a vengeance, because all those seven hundred and seventy-seven times have to be taken care of; he has to take revenge for all those too. He was somehow tolerating - somehow It was not out of understanding.
WHY DO WE HAVE CHALLENGES IN THE FIRST PLACE ?
I wish I had a good answer to that question. But I have learned through my study of Christian Science that there is no point in resenting the challenges and every point in working one’s way through them in order to demonstrate the Truth’s of Christian Science , to shine the Christ light and heal both oneself and others.
I could have done without the challenge of a prostrate condition but in learning to deal with it, I also found that patients with same problem were healed. I have never lost a case.
What has become apparent to me is that each challenge has forced me to understand more about God’s nature. I realise that in overcoming ignorance about God’s nature, healing occurs because the problem was actually a function of my ignorance of that nature. Like the case of the lady who wanted to have children but could not conceive. After working with her for two months, I awoke one morning to realise that Divine Mind was incredibly fertile. It did not matter how much a tight spot I was in, God was always able to provide a solution. It was always fertile with solutions. Two days later the lady called to announce she was pregnant.
I imagine Moses was bemused to find his arm covered in leprosy but rather than have a meltdown he turned to God and prayed to know why it was not a problem and God answered him. I always ask in similar situations “ OK Father, show me why this is not a problem.”
The role of light is to shine in darkness. That is our work , to shine... and like light we are not concerned with the darkness. As St John tells us:
All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. ¶ There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe.
If we look at the challenges faced by some Christian Scientists we see the value of just getting on with the job of working out such challenges because they leave a legacy for others to be inspired by. Those legacies will become so overwhelming that mankind will finally abandon the mortal human model of existence and adopt the spiritual and immortal model which all its freedom and perfection.
If you want inspiration to continue your work , look at the article from Arno Preller who was imprisoned at 10 years old in Nazi Germany for being a Christian Scientist. He worked his way through the challenge and lost the scars it left him with.
BY ARNO PRELLER
From the September 21, 2009 issue of the Christian Science Sentinel
I grew up in Germany when Hitler was in power. During the war, Christian Science activities were forbidden in Germany. My dad, who was a Christian Science practitioner and active in church affairs, was thrown into jail, later to be released and forced to serve in the army. When I was ten, I had to join the Hitler Youth organization. Every young person had to. That was the law. But after my dad was put in jail, I refused to participate any longer in the meetings or have anything to do with the organization. As a result, I ended up spending the last part of the war in a forced labor camp.
After the war, when our family was reunited, I noticed that my dad was very friendly toward one of our neighbors who had been an active member of the Nazi party. I was indignant about my dad's attitude and told him so. As I remember it, my dad asked me whether I thought I was in a position to judge who was acceptable as a child of God and who was not. He emphatically told me that if I wanted to know myself as God's perfect creation, I had to see everyone in that same light, without exception. I had to forgive.
I remember saying to him, "I suppose you're going to tell me that you forgive Hitler." He made it clear that he in no way condoned the terrors that had been going on under the Nazis, and that those responsible should be punished. But that did not take away an individual's need to forgive and see everyone as God does.
Some 20-plus years later I had a family of my own. My wife and I had three boys and wanted to adopt a girl. The adoption procedure required a psychological examination of my wife and me. After the test, the psychologist observed that I had amazingly few mental scars from my war experiences. At first I was happy to hear that. But the more I thought about it, the more I wondered why I should have any scars at all.
As I examined my thinking, I realized that, after all those years, I still had occasional war-related nightmares, and there were times when I would fantasize what I might do to one of the camp guards if I were to meet him. I realized how irrational those thoughts were, and I determined to earnestly and systematically pray to be freed of those last remaining mental scars.
My prayers focused on two elements. The first one was my effort to see that in God's reality, in His kingdom, there had never been a war or its consequences. Let me explain: I saw that the war I'd lived through was actually part of the "dream of material living," as it is called in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures (Mary Baker Eddy, p. 14). And a dream can never leave a scar on reality. If I'd been dreaming at night that I was being chased by a herd of elephants, I would not look for elephant tracks on my bedroom carpet when I woke up.
If I want to know myself as God's perfect creation, I have to see everyone in that same light, without exception. I have to forgive.
Second, I now had the spiritual maturity to see the need for unconditional forgiveness. It was inconsistent for me to declare my freedom from the consequences of war and at the same time hold on to resentment toward persons connected with the war experience. Forgiveness was a prerequisite for my freedom from these remaining scars. I thought of Jesus' prayer for those who tormented and crucified him: "Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do" (Luke 23:34).
Forgiving the camp commandant, the guards, and many others actually turned out to be easier than I thought. It was clear to me that all of those involved had been acting out roles that covered up their true God-given identities.
I remember questioning just how sincere my forgiveness was. After much prayer, I decided that a good test was to ask myself whether I was able to love those people. Almost to my surprise, the answer was affirmative. I saw that as a child of God, each one was altogether lovable.
In the Lord's Prayer, Jesus taught his followers to pray: "Forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors" (Matt. 6:12). In Science and Health, Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered Christian Science, gave what she understood to be "the spiritual sense of the Lord's Prayer," and for that line she provided this interpretation: "And Love is reflected in love" (pp. 16, 17). Here Love capitalized is a name for God. Because we are always comforted and embraced by this divine Love, and as God's reflection are never separate from it, it's natural for us to actively reflect that Love and to love everyone, regardless of how we've been treated.
During my time at the camp I had received a severe whipping for speaking out of turn. The camp doctor had predicted that the resulting scars would be there for the rest of my life. Since they were on my back, I never gave them much thought. So I was all the more surprised when I discovered one day that, after I'd found mental freedom from any lingering resentment and was able to freely forgive, those physical scars had also totally disappeared. They had been there for over 20 years.
I learned that I can never experience my own perfection as the child of God if I harbor resentful or critical thoughts toward anyone. If I kick my neighbor out of the kingdom, I fall out of it along with him, figuratively speaking.
Often, what would keep us from loving unconditionally is self-righteousness. I have learned again and again that it isn't always important to insist on being in the right. We are blessed much more by seeing and loving the good in the other person.
At times, we also need to forgive ourselves to get over a past mistake which may act as a drag on the present. This becomes much easier when we remember how much a forgiving God loves us. There is only one thing you can do with a mistake, and that is to correct it. Mistakes are corrected one at a time.
It's important to be completely honest with oneself, and detect and face up to any remaining sinful or erroneous thoughts or behavior. Why hang on to any excess baggage? It just slows us down. God's forgiveness does not bypass the need to clean up our own act.
Mrs. Eddy made this very strong assertion in a talk she gave in her church in 1895: "Without a knowledge of his sins, and repentance so severe that it destroys them, no person is or can be a Christian Scientist" (Miscellaneous Writings 1883—1896, p. 107).
Repentance is essential. Once a thought or act has been thoroughly repented of—seen for what it is and given up—it is counterproductive to condemn ourselves and to keep on rehearsing the error. Once we sufficiently repent of an error, we experience reformation. We are reformed into expressing what we have always truly been. And error or wrong behavior has never really been part of us.
Referring to the days of Jesus, Mrs. Eddy wrote: "Now, as then, signs and wonders are wrought in the metaphysical healing of physical disease; but these signs are only to demonstrate its divine origin,—to attest the reality of the higher mission of the Christ-power to take away the sins of the world" (Science and Health, p. 150). I find it helpful to pray daily for myself and to know that I can think only as God causes me to think and act only as God causes me to act. Does this include how I think about the community or the world? Absolutely.
In some ways humankind seems as paralyzed as that man in Capernaum. A collective commitment to forgiveness would go a long way toward melting down the world's stubborn resistance to peaceful solutions, and we would all witness more freedom. [Anthony J Whitehouse]
Law of Allowing
Law of Amra
Sympathetic Vibration in Healing
1.4 - Etheric Mind Force in Healing