The Seeker of Peace

October 29, 2008, 11:15 am
Filed under: Forgiveness, Non-duality | Tags: , , , , ,

There’s a Sedona Method exercise in which you sit and simply give yourself love. I’ve always had a hard time with this exercise. For me, it all too often became an ego-reinforcing self-justification: “I’m not so bad. I’m actually a pretty good person. Yeah, I love myself.” It felt a little too much like something from Affirmation Girl.

I’ve long known that this wasn’t the point. The exercise is supposed to be about divine love, feeling the perfection of our underlying Beingness. That is, the point is to transcend our ego, not reinforce it. I still found the exercise very hard to do in that sense.

(As I get better at detecting my ego’s tricks, I understand my difficulty better. After all, it’s like an ego-dream come true: an opportunity to distort an exercise into something that will directly justify and reinforce the ego! It’s a great chance for an ego-preservation exercise.)

I recently realized, largely due to my work with A Course in Miracles, that my guilt keeps me from diving self-love. My self-love efforts have been a type of egocentric self-love, an exact parallel to the egocentric forgiving I discussed last week. Trying to make my ego feel better about my ego is just like trying to make my ego feel better about someone else’s ego: a pointless exercise, even if I succeed.

Thus, a simple change in the exercise helped me a lot. If I sit and give myself forgiveness, there’s much less opportunity for ego distortion. My ego can’t truly forgive, because it can’t let go of judging. So, sitting and forgiving myself, in the sense of realizing that there’s perfection underneath the ego, gets me much more in touch with that divine love.

Egocentric love, whether loving myself or someone else, is just another form of judging. I find giving myself forgiveness to be much more effective at helping me lay down the burden of judgment.