So when Jesus said to forgive those who crucified him because they didn’t understand what they were doing, he was talking about people in “group think” being caught up in the current of their karma, unconscious of what they were actually doing. But forgiveness does not mean being passive.
Forgiveness does not mean allowing oneself to be swept out to sea in a riptide of karma. However, forgiveness does show you how to swim using the karmic riptide to get out of the riptide. Forgiveness means non-resistance that resists. Forgiveness reveals the action in inaction.
Forgiveness is a creative action not tried before, a surprise, or a discovery. In Buddhism, forgiveness is the Middle Way.
I’m looking at forgiveness in a new way here, not as something I do but as a surrender of me as being separate to me as being relationship.
We ARE relationship. Nothing stands alone. A soup can does not exist by itself. A soup can is a relationship and a individual can. it is both, like the electron, both a wave or relationship and a particle standing alone in space/time.
We all know what relationship is. A metaphor for the joy and perfect time of relationship is Fred and Ginger. When they dance, they dance as one. We love that. We all long for that dance, the dance of Two as One. We call that dance Romance. We dissolve into a relationship, into love, into Oneness. We feel part of the whole. We feel we are no longer in exile as a single thing against the world.
When we feel—and relationship is a feeling, a way of being—relationship it can be with anything: our pet, our car, our craft, our art, our dance, our sports, and our war. We do extraordinary feats when in relationship.
Forgiveness in this understanding is a shift from being alone and against the world as the other to being atonement with the world or the other. We shift from being a particle to being a wave, a relationship. We shift from being Aware OF to being Aware AS.
We shift from conflict to participation. We shift from being separate to becoming whole, or One, but that Oneness is always upstream of being two, or one alone. Relationship is not of two objects holding hands. Relationship transcends the objects in relationship and pulls them like gravity into was a new way of being that is dynamic and creative and joyous, because it is free from the suffering of being alone.
To put it succinctly, forgiveness is relationship. When you are in relationship, you are in forgiveness. When you are standing alone, you are out of relationship and by the nature of your being a separate thing, you are unforgiving.
Relationship and not in relationship is Quantum Physics; the electron as a particle or thing in location is not in relationship: the electron as a wave is in relationship. Both viewpoints are valid, yet contradictory. How can we be separate and belonging or in relationship at the same time. That is the Hamlet question. To Be (a separate thing) or not to be (be in relationship) that is the question. We must be both, that is the answer, but we cannot. That is Zen.
Because we cannot be separate as a defined thing and in relationship at the same time, we have a wound in consciousness, for we must be separate and belong to a whole, two imperatives that must be obeyed, but they cancel each other out. Buddha says this is the cause of our suffering and discontent. Nothing is ever perfect.
The truth or the One that contains the two (being separate and belonging) is Zen or the non-dual traditions. The One is not two, yet is Two. A paradox. A dynamic unity that is not fixed by a constant discovery, a creative act, which is life itself. Life is a creative act of the Two becoming One, and then becoming two again…a fountain of Now not a linear steam of time, yet there is the stream of history.