"When something has gone to the trouble of happening, it is best to consider it inevitable, in my opinion."
— From "My talks with Dean Spanley" by Baron Dunsany and the 2008 movie "Dean Spanley" with Peter O'Toole and Sam Neil
By Sally McKirgan
Sometimes while reading a book or watching a movie, a statement will jump out and you can't write it down fast enough. The above statement was a beautiful reminder of how we "suffer" when we cannot accept what evidently was inevitable. When something tragic happens, we experience horror and nonacceptance immediately. "Oh My God, I don't believe it." It is a total shock. Unless we can come to accept that it was somehow inevitable it will continue to traumatize us for months, years and decades in a never-ending stream of memories from the past.
In the past year we had an unexpected sudden death in our family. We wonder "why him; or why us?" Our emotions fixate; and we are consumed by the "If only ___ or What if ____ or Why didn't ___" and the roller coaster of regrets. However, these thoughts are a waste of psychic energy if it was inevitable in the first place. It was supposed to happen; and so it did; it was preordained; so let it go.
Mystics and spiritual teachers say this world and everything in it is an illusion and that life is a classroom. Each soul comes to learn lessons for its progression and everything that happens is part of the "script" for that soul's lesson plan. Dr. Brian L. Weiss in his book, "Many Lives, Many Masters," recounts several startling cases of past life regressions with case histories of soul evolution through reincarnation. If our true identity is Spirit, eternal, changeless and formless, then no one dies or even can die. Bodies die, however, and we believe the body is "who" we/they are and become attached to them; we love them. When we realize the eternal Spirit residing within each of us is our identity, we will not suffer when inevitably the soul/spirit leaves the body that hosted it. We each have an individual script and lessons to learn but our Spirit/Soul never dies.
Whatever our script may be, we have two choices: to listen to the voice of love within our mind or the ego voice of fear. The ego thoughts — regret, if only or why — will keep the misery, guilt, blame, grief and emotional distractions going forever. How long do you want to suffer? Vigilance is needed because thoughts are seemingly as innocent as a fuzzy drifting dandelion seed until they land and take root. Here's an exercise: Simply watch all thoughts of regret and pain; do not judge yourself; don't deny or believe them; just notice and observe the ego in action. Then withdraw your belief in them. Wait for peace to descend. When you feel peaceful again, say:
"I can be hurt by nothing but my thoughts. I can elect to change all thoughts that hurt. The Love in my Mind is my guide today." *
By holding the hand of love within your mind, the ego thoughts are seen for what they are. You, the director of your powerful mind, can change them by choosing Love within. Looking and letting go of regret and ego-held grievances truly is forgiveness. Accepting is surrendering; it was a lesson for all the souls involved. It was inevitable and nothing could have been done differently, because it wasn't. We give up blame and all residue of resentment. We always share the Love and Oneness with those who have gone. The mercy of inner peace is now present.
* Excerpted from A Course In Miracles workbook lessons 281 and 284.
Sally McKirgan facilitates the Inner Peace Column and an A Course In Miracles study group. See the Inner Peace Community Blog at www.dailytidings.com.
The Ashland Tidings invites residents of the Rogue Valley to submit articles on all aspects of inner. Send 600- to 700-word articles to email@example.com.