One effect of divine grace, as Jesus taught it, was to counter evil. Just as judgment is left to the Lord, so is punishing evil. Jesus uses conventional vocabulary at times when he speaks about Satan and possessions by demons, but what rings far more true is his teaching that evil should not be resisted.
Learning how to overcome evil without resisting it involves a process. Jesus isnít calling for instant conversion to pacifism, nor is he asking us to be blind to the terrible effects of evil when it goes unchecked.
What he is teaching changes as you pass through the stages of your own spiritual path. Reality is different in different states of consciousness, and that includes evil. You cannot pretend to love your enemy, yet when you come closer to God-consciousness, such compassion comes naturally.
Itís helpful to remind yourself that evil isnít a monolith or a constant. It has many shades and degrees, and once they are fully examined, evil turns out to be your own shadow self expressing outwardly what you havenít resolved inwardly.
Evil, like everything else, depends upon perception. As your perception changes, evil shifts. Itís very important that this shift occurs, because if you remain locked in a rigid hatred or fear of evil, you push your own shadow further out of sight. No matter how hard you struggle to overcome evil, unless you understand your own shadow, it will find new ways to bring back the thing you hate and fear.
Brooding on your negative traits isnít going to bring the shadow to light. One act that will is confession. The only way to disarm the shadow is to relate to it in a different way, and when you reveal a secret to someone, your life in hiding begins to shift.
Adapted from The Third Jesus: The Christ We Cannot Ignore, by Deepak Chopra (Harmony Books, 2008).