“We can never obtain peace in the outer world until we make peace with ourselves.” –Dalai Lama
Hello Spiritual Warriors! And welcome to another week of life tools. In this week’s edition of The Source we’ll address forgiveness.
Each of us has something in our life that is a source of regret, grief, shame, guilt or sadness… something we’ve said or done that haunts us, distracts us, and weighs on our heart. Breaking a promise, making a bad or non-nourishing choice, lying and getting caught, cheating on a partner, saying something that was mean, not speaking up when you could have… The list of universal transgressions that we all share is limitless. And just as the resentment we may have for another person can turn us outwardly bitter – the anger we hold in our own heart – for ourselves – can inwardly damage us even more as it festers and overwhelms us. These toxic, destructive emotions can lead to cynicism, reactivity, and depression.
But we can begin the process of healing whenever we are ready to give ourselves permission to forgive.
Some of our wounds may still be fresh years after our “infraction” took place and they will only dig deeper into our mind, heart, and ultimately our body if we don’t do something to take us beyond them.
When we forgive, we free ourselves from the ties that bind us to the one that hurt us. And this might just be the opportunity to forgive yourself. There are a few easy steps to begin the process.
First, ask yourself, “Have I learned anything from this experience?” Make a list of the life-lessons you’ve learned.
Next, ask yourself, “Knowing what I now know, would I have acted differently?” “If confronted with the exact same circumstance, would I make a more conscious choice?” If the answer is that you would now choose more wisely… with greater understanding of the consequences, then you have made a powerful breakthrough.
Saying to yourself, “I am a bad person” — is toxic and disempowering. It’s devolutionary. The fact that you would now choose differently means you are NOT a bad person – but someone who chose poorly in a given moment – just as we all have.
The final step is to give yourself permission to acknowledge your less conscious choice AND make a personal commitment to making more conscious ones going forward
Imagine yourself behaving in a wiser and more thoughtful way. Define yourself as someone who makes more thoughtful choices. And take a step to transmute the hurt you’ve caused – make amends, tell someone else about your shift, write it down, make a donation to a cause that serves someone else, and have compassion on yourself. This will begin the process of forgiving your tender heart.
Keep moving forward in the direction of your healing. Keep making amends. Keep redefining yourself. Every day wake up and forgive yourself just a little bit more. Start to live the transformation. And as the days flow on, you will begin to breathe a little bit easier. Remember to meditate every day. This will help your journey of evolution to your best version.
Self-forgiveness is an ongoing process, not an overnight solution. Be gentle with yourself and remember your humanity… your self-compassion. And most importantly, remember that we are all one! Aham brahmasmi baby! I AM the universe. In the meantime, I’ll see you in the gap! Peace. –davidji