Prokofieff on Forgiveness

Bruce Michael

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Sergei Prokofieff explains the process of forgiveness:

"only man's higher ego or Spirit-Self is able to influence the ordinary human ego in a positive sense, for it alone has the capacity not merely to avoid causing this latter member any injury but also to further its subsequent growth and evolution. Here we have an indication of the innermost nature of the process of forgiveness: namely, that man is able truly to forgive, that is, voluntarily and without the least injury to himself to interrupt the stream of memory that bears his individual ego, only if he allows the light of his higher ego to shine within it; or in other words, if he is enabled to permeate it with the forces of the Spirit-Self. This means that the whole relationship of the higher and lower ego within man is rooted in the problem of forgiveness as such, so that without entering wholly into the nature and significance of forgiveness it is simply impossible to understand this relationship to the fullest extent. For what man's higher ego accomplishes with regard to his lower ego throughout earthly life can be expressed in human words as a continual process of forgiveness, forgiveness for all those countless mistakes and errors which the lower ego goes on making, largely because in an overwhelming majority of cases it is in a position of complete or partial ignorance (oblivion) with respect to the real impulses of the higher ego which constantly guides it......

"If at this point we recall Rudolf Steiner's indication that the higher ego (Spirit-Self) of every human being in the present cycle of his development is borne in the spiritual worlds by his Guardian Angel and that therefore from a certain point of view it does not make any significant difference whether we say that the Spirit-Self or his Angel is working within him,~ what we have just said can also shed some light on the essential nature of a man's relationship with the Angel who guides and protects him. For all the relationships that an Angel has with the human being whom he guides are in the strictest accordance with the words of Christ cited above: 'Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do'....."