Forgiveness is not an act of will. You cannot force yourself to forgive. That is not forgiving. That is submerging what you feel and gritting your teeth.
Desiring to forgive is not forgiveness. It is merely the desire.
The cure is not even in feeling differently. Feeling differently is a result of something else. Something has to happen before you can feel differently. Feeling differently is evidence of something else, and that something else is seeing. When you see differently, you will feel differently.
Christ moved as he saw. And so do you.
In your world of comprehension, you even say "see" for "understand". For how you see is how you respond. You respond to what you see.
When you see an overt act as kind, you respond in kind. If you see an overt act as unkind, you frown, or hit back, or run away or you pretend you didn't notice or didn't understand. In any case, inasmuch as you saw unkindness, that is what you dealt with.
Sometimes you are mistaken. It doesn't matter, because you responded to what you thought you saw. When someone reaches into his pocket and you think he is reaching for a gun, you will respond as one faced with a gun. You shoot first, or you run away and hide. Perhaps he whom you saw as an opponent was really pulling out a pen. No matter, if you thought it was a gun, you respond as if to a gun. There are many responses you can make to a gun, but you will surely respond to what you think you see.
What you think you are seeing is your interpretation. So even what you see as immediate events that need attention are your thoughts. And you think as you see.
Someone who rules sees himself as a ruler. Someone who thinks he is a slave is indeed a slave. Or prisoner. Or fool, whatever he thinks he is.
Do not let others see for you, for you will most likely see as you expect to see. You may well see what others tell you is there. You have been trained well.
An act of forgiveness is not where forgiveness lies. Forgiveness is not an action. What is expressed may not match what is felt. An action is a minor thing. And words are actions.
Forgiveness occurs before words. Forgiveness is nothing more than seeing differently. Perhaps We can call it seeing further.
Even a man who pulls out a gun, and it is clearly a gun, may be pulling it out to protect you because he sees something behind you that you do not. But you may never know.
I believe there is an expression in the world of men that says nothing is as it seems. Well, that depends on what something seems to you.
Certainly there are levels of seeing. What is true on one level may not be true on another.
Consider a moment that you do not have to forgive everything. Or anything.
Do you forgive the rain for raining? Do you forgive puddles for forming? Do you forgive the noise the ocean makes? Do you forgive sand for getting in your shoes?
You may feel annoyance, but you know there is nothing to forgive there. When you think you are the center of the relative world, then you think you have to forgive. If you think the ocean roars at you, then you may think you have to forgive it.
When someone has indeed wronged you, and no matter how much you felt the brunt of it, his wrong had nothing to do with you. Like the rain, the puddle, the sand, you are incidental. The perpetrator may think you are the reason, but his sight is limited as well.
You are the center of the universe, but not the center of the relative world. Your center is not in the details of life.
Perhaps you have to forgive yourself for seeing amiss.
You can, right now, give up your opposition to the world. You have been bracing yourself towards life.
Melt the necessity of forgiving. Forgive beforehand.
When Christ reportedly said, "Forgive them, Father, for they know not what they do," he was speaking a truth but he was not speaking to Me. Christ above all knew there was no need to tell Me that.
Christ was a teacher, and he was always teaching you. His words and his deeds taught you. The world was his classroom, and until his dying breath (and afterwards, and still yet), he was teaching you.
If people knew what they were doing, they would not do what they often do.
There is a great deal of energy that goes into forgiveness. A great deal of energy goes into judgment. If it were not for judgment, there would be no perceived need for forgiveness.
Do not judge yourself for wishing to forgive, for wishing to forgive puts you on the right track. When you do forgive, as you mean the word "forgive", you have restored yourself to a more natural state, one less defensive.
Was there anyone less defensive than My son Christ? Christ was not defensive because he did not hold on to worldly boundaries. He had one truth, and it was I. And he did not have to hold on to that. He knew it — I — was All That Is.
Christ did not think so much about protecting his selfdom. He saw the evanescence of his life. He was not so concerned with the domain of relative life as you are. He could hardly remember what ego was. He walked in a larger world. And he invited you as well. And I invite you.
Whom did Christ forgive? Did he forgive lepers? Did he forgive the ill, the poor, the lame, the lost? He took nothing as an affront, so he had absolutely nothing to forgive. He was not even an absolver, for what was there to absolve? His crucifiers he saw with love. He did not rail against them. It was no effort for him not to. Christ did not have to make effort to say nothing. He saw with his eyes of love. He saw further. He saw beyond what you see.
He did not have adversaries, but let's say for the sake of argument, that he did. If he did, how could those who crucified him be worthy to be called his adversary? What does a gnat have to do with a giant?
My son Christ was a leader, and he picked up stray threads and wove them together. His staff, as portrayed in paintings, drew lambs to his fold. The crook of his staff was his heart, and the fold was, of course, Heaven. His love, like Mine, draws you higher. And what is higher than love? What greater thing can be conceived of? I cannot think of any.
Forgiveness is a paltry thing. Love is a great thing. And you, and everyone else, despite what your eyes may tell you, are made of love. And so you are made of greatness. Let go of the smallness. Stop seeing it. Make way for the greatness.