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Soul Life
Association for Research and Enlightenment (A.R.E.)


  by John Van Auken

Of the “seven deadly sins,” four are a result of interpersonal activity (envy, wrath, lust, and pride), and the other three result from an exaggerated focus on self (sloth, gluttony, avarice). Sin is not simply a mistake, as some teach. Sin binds our mind and will; it possesses us. Forgiveness can release us from these bonds.

Despite the seven deadly sins, people are rarely all good or all bad, but have conflicting influences. Cayce quoted the old saying, “There is so much good in the worst of us, and so much bad in the best of us, that it doesn’t pay for any of us to think poorly of the rest of us.” Thus, a good way to approach self and others is to focus on the good and minimize the bad. Nothing helps a bad person more than bringing out their goodness. The same is true for us.

Nevertheless, life is such that we can be hurt, and become angry and disappointed with others and ourselves. We need to shake off the weight of these feelings without suppressing them. Cayce guides: “If you will meditate upon that as He gave: [that] love and forgiveness, faith and hope may overcome spites, fears, distrust, [then] you may open your heart, you may open yourself to the opportunities that constantly lie before you in your activities in the present.” Praying for help with these negative influences and then entering into the stillness while surrounding ourselves with His teachings about love and forgiveness, faith and hope, we may fill our minds and hearts with that spirit that overcomes the negative feelings.

But it will take action after the meditation to truly let go of antagonism, as we find in this next reading. Cayce encourages us to engage our wills and forgive.

“(Q) How can I overcome antagonistic forces in self and others?

”(A) By actually manifesting forgiveness, more and more. In overcoming antagonistic feelings, forgive as you would be forgiven, remembering then no more. This overcomes antagonism and antagonistic influences; for as self was, is, an influence in dispersing feelings in hearts and souls of peoples, the thoughts held create the currents upon which the wings of experience must pass, and then -- as these are made in positive contacts -- so is antagonism overcome, love made manifest, glorying in your own ability in Him; not in self, in Him!”

Jesus Christ and His comforting spirit -- the Holy Spirit -- are a powerful force for helping us to forgive. Cayce identifies the Holy Spirit as “the motivating force of man’s relationship to God and to the fellow man.” He identifies the mind as “the Christ-Way,” saying that the mind “becomes the channel through which there is builded the greater understanding with ourselves, others, and God” (1947-1). Therefore, we need to evoke the motivating force (the Holy Spirit) and channel it through our thoughts about ourselves and others each day. When negative thoughts come, clear them away with the higher motivation of the Holy Spirit and the rebuilding power of the Christ Consciousness.

But Cayce and Jesus call us to an even higher level of service. Both teach that we can lift the burdens of others, take away their sins, forgive their sins in such a manner that they are gone. “As has been given, is it easier to say, ‘Son, your sins be forgiven,’ or to say ‘Arise, take up your bed and walk’? but that you may know that the Son has power to forgive [Mat. 9:5-6] -- meaning to forget the weakness and give strength to those that falter,” 538-30. When we keep in attunement with the Christ, then we, as sons and daughters of God, may lift the burdens of others. We see this in a dream of one of Cayce’s more ardent supporters: “That dream of [900]’s night before last, in which I beheld a man who sought forgiveness in prayer. I said, ‘Not only believe you are forgiven, but know that you are forgiven, for Christ forgives you.’ He challenged my right to so represent myself; at which time Edgar Cayce spoke up and said: ‘Yes, Christ gives him that privilege, and he may have anything he wants, provided he keeps faith,’” 900-411. In the Gospel of John, chapter 20, verses 21-23, a resurrected Jesus appears and says: “‘Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I send you.’ And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said to them, ‘Receive you the Holy Spirit: whose sins you forgive, they are forgiven; whose sins you retain, they are retained.’” Jesus went to the Father but left us to represent the Father’s works in this world in His stead. We have been ordained to carry on the good work of forgiveness, if we will rise to that level of at-onement and understanding. Not with a high and mighty attitude, but in humility, faith, and at-onement with Christ. In this way we may channel His burden-lifting forgiveness to others in this often difficult world.

The key to this level of forgiveness is what Cayce said to 538, “glorying in your own ability in Him; not in self, in Him!” Seek that connection with Him and then allow His power to gently, humbly flow through us to others. Often it will be just a kind word, a smile, a gentle sharing or allowing, that will lift another’s burden.

The Holy Spirit motivates, the Mind channels and builds, and the physical change is the miraculous result. Remember, our greatest opportunities to manifest this will be with those close to us, in our families, among our friends and coworkers.

Few activities will make us happier and healthier than bringing happiness and well-being to those around us. This is the peace that the resurrected Jesus spoke of, a peace that comes from lovingly forgiving and forgetting all the little things that weigh humans down. The power of forgiveness is transformative and freeing. Let’s allow it to flow within us and to others.

“Our Father, Our God! We thank you for the gift of your son, the Christ, in whose name we ask pardon and grace and mercy for the shortcomings of myself and others. Let me so live in the light of His love as He manifested in the Earth. And may I be humble, may I be patient, may I be gracious: forgiving even as I ask forgiveness for myself.” 281-64


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