A profound recognition has taken place in my mind, off the heals of a conversation with my ex-wife.
The conversation didn’t start off that well [there is still much to heal]. And in a moment of mutual release, the conversation was able to transform into true communication. Not from the head, but from the heart. We were able to see the same thing, together.
And that’s helpful.
Afterwards, I spent some time sitting with my thoughts and feelings; creating a space for any fears, worries, anxieties to rise to the surface to be recognized and released.
Then Matthew 5:44 – “Love your enemy…” jumped into my mind.
I flipped open my Bible and went to that section of Matthew and read the entirety of the passage. [Reading from The Message Bible clears up some of the language used in NIV or other versions, also helpful].
I quietly sat with Jesus’ lesson here and opened myself to any deeper message. I was struck with another passage, Matthew 22, where Jesus teaches us to “Love thy neighbor as thyself”. And then there was a melding of the two and I heard;
Love thy enemy as thyself!
I was floored at the implications of this. I returned to silence and let this idea rest in my heart, and two insights dawned on me.
First, that the way to heal and protect the heart from hate and anger towards others is to invite them into your own being; to release the idea that you and another person are two separate identities. In this way we allow compassion and love to guide the relationship.
And second, that the enemy is never another person. [I am never upset for the reason i Think – Lesson 5, A Course in Mircles]
The real “enemy” of peace is the ego’s projection. This is what I would call a cardinal sin. When we allow our perception of our brother’s and sisters to be hijacked by the ego, we will make them responsible for how we feel and how we choose to behave.
So in this simple idea we can recognize that the way out of projection is to reintegrate with the pain and trauma which we have thrust onto those around us, and return responsibility to where it belongs. Ourselves.
Love your enemy as yourself says to me that the enemy is not outside of me, but my own thoughts and projections about what I am seeing and feeling. This is in-line with the integral 3-2-1 Shadow Practice, which is designed to assist us in owning our projections and false ideas about who and what is responsible for the way I feel and think.
I pray this is helpful for those that read it.