I was speaking to a mentee of mine recently and the topic of special relationships came up. It got me thinking about how in our lives the closest people are often those we perceive as the most hurtful. How do we navigate that reality? Well the Course, and Islam actually, say we are really dreaming.
لَّقَدْ كُنتَ فِي غَفْلَةٍ مِّنْ هَٰذَا فَكَشَفْنَا عَنكَ غِطَاءَكَ فَبَصَرُكَ الْيَوْمَ حَدِيدٌ ﴿٢٢﴾
And you were oblivious to this (in sleep) so we removed the veil and your vision today is piercing. (Quran 50:22)
I love this dreaming concept. I find it so liberating to remember I'm simply dreaming. My feelings in my 'waking life' are really strong, and they often feel like I'm trapped in a storm. But when I have 'regular' dreams I'll wake up and immediately think, well that was just a dream and it was 'my dream' therefore it wasn't about or for anyone else but me. What was that figure in the dream reflecting? How can I help speed up the forgiveness process here that's being highlighted.
In 'waking' life it seems it's not so easy. Cindy Renard actually says the ego script is set up to make it hard. It's the 'closest' people to us, those parents, or children or spouses. We open our eyes to the world and they are right there ready to fulfill their role as actors in our dream of projection. It's that person that did that thing that was so hurtful. I couldn't have done that to myself!? I wouldn't! Impossible! Yet the Course says there is no one outside yourself. You have indeed done it to yourself because - and again this is the liberating moment- you are dreaming.
What is seen in dreams seems to be very real.⁶ Yet the Bible says that a deep sleep fell upon Adam, and nowhere is there reference to his waking up.⁷ The world has not yet experienced any comprehensive reawakening or rebirth.⁸ Such a rebirth is impossible as long as you continue to project or miscreate.⁹ It still remains within you, however, to extend as God extended His Spirit to you.¹⁰In reality this is your only choice, because your free will was given you for your joy in creating the perfect. (ACIM, T-2.I.3:5-10)
So if we can simply remember those in our lives that challenge us reflect aspects of ourselves we still judge, and that those aspects of ourselves are simply screaming for love, then can we love them? Does it help to step back a bit and realize we are only asked to LOVE them? I know in these moments I'll ask for help because of myself I can't do much in those relationships. But it is so liberating when every now and then one of my special relationships says something out loud about me that is perceived in the world as negative and I can say in my own head, "Oh thank you, Thank You! You just told me what the unconscious thought is that I need to forgive." Sometimes it's easier to forgive them then other times, but I know it's just a matter of time and honest to God I'm so so grateful for those moments. They are big Ah Ha moments for me. Those painful seconds where my unconscious guilt bubbles up and hours with my subha can soothe (1). I can't complain. Forgiving is realigning our miscreations, our projections into the joy God created us for, to be One with His Will. Miscreating is painful. However, realigning is inherently joyful because Our Will is His. It's inherently soothing to forgive. Do you prefer that you be right or happy? (ACIM, T-29.VII.1:9)