Daily Inspiration

The Ego’s Use of Guilt

No gift of Heaven has been more misunderstood than has forgiveness. It has, in fact, become a scourge; a curse where it was meant to bless, a cruel mockery of grace, a parody upon the holy peace of God. Yet those who have not yet chosen to begin the steps of prayer cannot but use it thus. Forgiveness’ kindness is obscure at first, because salvation is not understood, nor truly sought for. What was meant to heal is used to hurt because forgiveness is not wanted. Guilt becomes salvation, and the remedy appears to be a terrible alternative to life.

Forgiveness-to-destroy will therefore suit the purpose of the world far better than its true objective, and the honest means by which this goal is reached. Forgiveness-to-destroy will overlook no sin, no crime, no guilt that it can seek and find and “love.” Dear to its heart is error, and mistakes loom large and grow and swell within its sight. It carefully picks out all evil things, and overlooks the loving as a plague; a hateful thing of danger and of death. Forgiveness-to-destroy is death, and this it sees in all it looks upon and hates. God’s mercy has become a twisted knife that would destroy the holy Son He loves.

Would you forgive yourself for doing this? Then learn that God has given you the means by which you can return to Him in peace. Do not see error. Do not make it real. Select the loving and forgive the sin by choosing in its place the face of Christ. How otherwise can prayer return to God? He loves His Son. Can you remember Him and hate what He created? You will hate his Father if you hate the Son He loves. For as you see the Son you see yourself, and as you see yourself is God to you. (A Course in Miracles, S-2.I.1-3)

The ego’s purpose for the world is to make separation seem real. Its principal tool to achieve its purpose is judgment, seeing guilt in the world. Guilt must be seen everywhere to make the separation seem to be immutable.

The attraction of the ego to guilt in the world is that it provides a means to project the hidden guilt which comes from believing we have offended God by “successfully” separating from Him. This projection of guilt is seen everywhere, including in God. God is perceived as vengeful, ready to strike us dead or punish us in a whim. Yet the ego is merely seeing itself in this image of God. Likewise the guilt we see in others is just an outward projection or image of our own inner guilt. This inner guilt comes from choosing the ego as our identity.

The ego’s version of forgiveness is to see another as an enemy. Its “forgiveness” does not let go of this hateful image. Rather it puffs itself up with its magnanimous statement of forgiveness while not truly forgiving. This process maintains the “reality” of separation by holding onto guilt. Separation from God, the Source of Life, is the choice for death. Death is the ego’s ultimate image proclaiming separation real. The world’s history is filled with attack and murder in defense of separation.

True forgiveness, guided by the Holy Spirit, recognizes that illusions can do no harm. Despite appearances in the world, we remain united in God’s changeless Love. As we accept the Holy Spirit’s guidance, we learn to see the Love behind the ego’s false images. As these false images are recognized as untrue, they are easily let go. Without the shadows of the ego, the truth of Love’s Light is seen.

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