Let Love teach you what You are.
There is a lot of talk about forgiveness ACIM style, but I'm not too sure what people really mean when they say this. I often hear that we need to forgive with the Holy Spirit. We need to do this, we need to do that. I was even told from someone who actually wrote a book on the principles of ACIM, who admitted to never reading the course once all the way through and said doing the workbook lessons was optional, but instead wrote his book through the lens of DU tell me that to forgive ACIM style, we first must remember that this is an illusion.
I find that statement interesting for a couple of reasons. One, is that this seems to be a top-down approach of trying to counteract error with “knowledge”, something that the author did not attempt to do, but instead had error corrected from the bottom up. It really seems to be a circular process, because if one could really “remember” that this is an illusion, then there would be no need for forgiveness and the Atonement. The very fact that one needs to forgive seems to demonstrate that this “knowledge” is not really in the person's awareness.
As the course tells us, “You have a part to play in the Atonement, but the plan of the Atonement is beyond you. You do not understand how to overlook errors, or you would not make them.”~ACIM
Another reason, is that this seems to imply that in the forgiveness process, we are in charge instead of just having the little willingness that is asked of us so that we may see the situation/person a different way.
As the course tells us, “To forgive is merely to remember only the loving thoughts you gave in the past and those that were given you. All the rest must be forgotten. Forgiveness is a selective remembering, based not on your selection.”~ACIM
In our little willingness, the course asks us, “I am not alone, and I would not intrude the past upon my Guest. I have invited Him, and He is here. I need do nothing except not to interfere.
In fact, the course cautions us about trying to do more than be willing, when it states, “The holy instant does not come from your little willingness alone. It is always the result of your small willingness combined with the unlimited power of God's Will. You have been wrong in thinking that it is needful to prepare yourself for Him. It is impossible to make arrogant preparations for holiness, and not believe that it is up to you to establish the conditions for peace. God has established them. They do not wait upon your willingness for what they are. Your willingness is needed only to make it possible to teach you what they are.”
The course is not asking us to make preparations or to try and “remember absolute knowledge” for the Holy Spirit or the Atonement, which the course tells us the Holy Spirit is the Mind of. Instead, the course tells us, “The necessary condition for the holy instant does not require that you have no thoughts that are not pure. But it does require that you have none that you would keep. Innocence is not of your making. It is given you the instant you would have it. Atonement would not be if there were no need for it.~ACIM
So how do I forgive “ACIM style?” It seems to me from what the course is saying, that “I” don't forgive at all. My part is only to be willing to not hold onto my private (impure) thoughts of the past and let the Holy Spirit show me another way. Forgiveness happens. In this way, forgiveness isn't an “act” that “I” do, but becomes more of what Martin Luther King Jr. once said, when he said that forgiveness is not an occasional act, but a permanent attitude.
The course tells us that peace and understanding go together and can never be found alone. The course also tells us that the only way to peace is through forgiveness. The Buddha said, “To understand everything, is to forgive everything.”