How many times already have you changed your vote, and wondered afterwards if it made any difference? Democrat, republican, or whatever may be the case wherever you happen to be in the world... One way or another the ego has us tied up in knots with choices which are no choices, with alternatives which are no alternative. The only meaningful choice is forgiveness.
Again and again the ego still manages to get us all wrapped around the axle, for then it makes forgiveness out to be a special thing, that you reserve for special people, or special days. We forgive on Sundays in church, or on alternate Tuesdays, and we feel very special when we're especially forgiving. But that's not forgiveness, that is always what the Course calls forgiveness to destroy, because it implies condemnation, it entails making the error real first, and then magnanimously 'forgiving' it. So what then is forgiveness? Forgiveness is being honest about the ego's tomfoolery, understanding that the ego, i.e. 'the world' WANTS to be fooled, because that keeps the ego in business. The ego's choices are an implied vote for the ego, cloaked by an apparent choice among illusory alternatives, which always are two sides of the same coin, and that coin always has the ego' bust on it - Caesar, a President, etc. The choices the ego has to offer keep us 'safely' rooted in the world. This is Maya, this is the evil witch of many a fairy tale.
This is also why the news about abuse, frauds and deceit, about copyright violations, theft and so on is so non-stop, because as long as we can see the deceit in others we don't have to face it ourselves. But then... with the ego we will merely judge ourselves. The other choice, the only other choice is to turn to Jesus, and to learn to look at the situation with his forgiving eyes, which means to let go of all of our judgments and asking him to look at the issues for us and with us, and let the judgment go into the hands of the Holy Spirit by joining with Jesus.
We want to be deceived, cheated, abandoned, and so on because it supports and maintains the ego's victim-hood story, and thus keeps the ego in charge. Only once we truly 'get' the fact that we are deceived because WE want to be, do we have the option of making another choice. And so the other choice is to forgive, starting with forgiving ourselves for wanting to be fooled, instead of judging ourselves stupid and unworthy once again. This way we won't fall into the trap of merely switching our vote between alternatives that can never live up to their promises, but we can let love be our guide in picking the best candidate with forgiveness in our hearts, guided by love, and without believing that salvation comes from any choices in the world, ever, for the world merely wants to be fooled, and therefore she will be. That story will never change. Our only meaningful option is following Jesus to his Kingdom that is not of this world, and never will be.
Trials are but lessons that you failed to learn presented once again, so where you made a faulty choice before you now can make a better one, and thus escape all pain that what you chose before has brought to you. In every difficulty, all distress, and each perplexity Christ calls to you and gently says, "My brother, choose again." He would not leave one source of pain unhealed, nor any image left to veil the truth. He would remove all misery from you whom God created altar unto joy. He would not leave you comfortless, alone in dreams of hell, but would release your mind from everything that hides His face from you. His Holiness is yours because He is the only power that is real in you. His strength is yours because He is the Self that God created as His only Son. (ACIM:T-31.VIII.3)The common expression: 'Let's keep it real!' is an interesting study in the ego. More often then not, it is used with a sigh of irritation, and the gist of it is to 'stick to the facts' and to thwart any attempt to really look at the issues and get honest, because again what's real to the ego are the choices that the world has to offer, and it would not tolerate anything to question the reality of those choices. Therefore what's real to the ego is exactly the unreality of this world of illusory choices, and what the Course calls the real world is the way we live once we have forgiven ourselves completely for wanting to be fooled in the first place, and that is the only thing that will ensure that we won't be. At that point we've put the ego out of business, we've put Maya out of business, because we chose instead for the judgment of the Holy Spirit.
Resign now as your own teacher. This resignation will not lead to depression. It is merely the result of an honest appraisal of what you have taught yourself, and of the learning outcomes that have resulted. Under the proper learning conditions, which you can neither provide nor understand, you will become an excellent learner and an excellent teacher. But it is not so yet, and will not be so until the whole learning situation as you have set it up is reversed. (ACIM:T-12.V.8:3-7)
Copyright, © 2011 Rogier F. van Vlissingen. All rights reserved.