When it comes right down to it, life often presents us with the kind of conundrums that good folks everywhere, can spend a lifetime trying to figure out. And ultimately – just hope to barely understand. Because so many mysteries seem beyond our ability to ever completely resolve, it becomes enough to have some understanding of the psychological manifestations, and emotional implications, they can give rise to.
Justice – especially the idea of ultimate justice – is one of those things. Because, try as we might, the corrosive effects of un-remediated injustice can burn a hole in our guts – and through our hearts – quicker than a piece of pumice can work a hole in our pocket. And be able to do it again – years later.
Even though a good number of more enlightened folks understand the ‘blessed’ healing effects of forgiveness – to remove that burning coal from the pit of their stomach – even forgiveness tends to somehow rely on some narcissistic sense of justice – ultimately deferred – to some ‘higher power,’ on some other plane of existence.
I know from my own experience, that the warm comfort of forgiveness, that can wash over someone having to suddenly choose between the unthinkable – and forgiveness – can sometimes be accompanied by an uncanny sense of awed regret – for the offender. That the person involved should have ever sunk so low, as to have apparently put themselves at risk for some dire consequence. Again, presumably involving some postmortem judgement of their life’s activities.
In other words, even those mental and emotional machinations that can accompany the self-preserving act of forgiveness, of an otherwise actionable offense, will often have an element of deferred justice, ultimately tied to it. Which is pretty telling, when you think about it. Our hearts and minds seems to cry out for the balm of retribution. For wrongs – both real and imagined, I might add – that have been committed against us.
Not that I don’t still recommend it – forgiveness, I mean. But, again – sans any belief in an actual hereafter, or judgement day – I find it a bit uncanny that our mental and emotional innards have apparently evolved to alight on this solution. This state of heightened, emotionally comforted, grace-through-forgiveness, for what – in most cases – will forever be, an unanswered and un-remediated wrong, suffered at the hands of another.
Of course, to question the mechanism too closely, is to invite a look into that entire realm of heightened emotional – and what are commonly thought of as ‘spiritual’ – manifestations. Like that heightened sense of intimacy – and love itself – that can wash over us, in waves of emotional bliss, and allow us a glimpse into those profoundly personal, emotional experiences, that many of us rarely tune-in to. The ‘good force,’ if you will. Generally available to any and all who might have occasion to access that deeply emotional-spiritual source – that is inside us all.
But it’s a fact, that most folks who’ve ever experience these things, have long since conflated their manifestation with a belief in God – their particular God – and are usually attributed to manifestations of ‘the Holy Ghost.’ Which would seem to be at least one more area where these – what I’ve termed ‘spiritual manifestations’ – though wonderfully comforting, can ultimately hide a truth, and lead us astray. Providing false testimony for the truthfulness of some particular instance, of having realized this experience.
Because it usually is experienced as a warm, comforting, state of grace, if you will – something beyond the pale of the ordinary – most fail to realize it can easily be called forth – even in the relatively uninitiated – given the heightened emotional state of some hypnotically conducive activities. Activities that – regularly indulged in, I might add – could easily be characterized as various forms of spiritual self-abuse.
The fact that most religions busy themselves ritualizing and proselytizing what amounts to their particular bag of tricks, points to the sad reality that such a natural source of human intimacy, and heightened sense of universal connectedness, should routinely get hijacked by religious sects, and simply used as a tool to control people. To sometimes divide entire nations and peoples.
Think about it, possums.