The Lesson of Forgiveness
Your greatest lesson lies in the space where you hold an inability to forgive. A pain so great that you feel unwilling or unable to release this experience from your heart. It may even feel like holding onto this pain in a sense protects you from experiencing this again.
How Unforgivenss Permiates Our Lives
Yet, as we all know the pain of unforgivness is a deep one. While it may appear that it has no impact on your life except holding the wrongdoer accountable, it actually festers in the heart and mind.
It turns into resentment and sadness within our hearts and we suffer tremendously. It is projected outward into our relationships whenever something that reminds us of our wound arises. It ripples through our life and undermines any true sense of happiness. If we hold onto a grudge for long enough it even moves into our body and manifests as illness.
There is no place that an unforgiving heart does not permeate. It will do so until we rise up to meet it as our teacher.
Yet what does this pain have to render to our growth.
I can promise you this. If you look deeply into the situation or person you have to forgive you will find a very familiar reflection. It may not be precisely the same, but you will find with a courageous heart,
that the person who wounded you shares many of your own wounds.
To be clear here, I am in no way condoning terrible and harmful behavior or implying that forgiveness means reentering relationship. Behaviors can be very toxic and it is a powerful experience to walk away from this.
I am simply referring to the state of our hearts when we hold onto a painful version or memory of a person. It is this state that we must transform to be free.
Exercise in Forgiveness: Finding The Reflection
Start by thinking of the person who has hurt you. Think about them in all the ways the exist, positive and negative. What you have liked in the past and disliked. Their history, their hopes and fears. Now look deeply. Do you share anything with this person.
When you can find this similarity however small, then you can turn toward yourself. Is there a place within yourself that you hold a similar grieve ace toward. Ask yourself: What do I need to forgive within myself. Which part of you do you hold some anger or disappointment toward.
Reflecting upon your own confusion, your fears, your desires cultivate deep compassion toward yourself.
Say the words:
I forgive myself for my own confusion and love and accept myself unconditionally.
Now turn your attention outward toward the person you feel has hurt you, in recognizing this person as a reflection of you and inseparable from your heart and mind:
I forgive you for your confusion and love and accept you unconditionally.
Bring in your breath. Breathing in compassion for yourself and breathing out forgiveness. Continue this breathing practice for about 15 minutes or until you feel a sense of emotional release and calmness.
This practice takes time, courage and intention.
The best way to do this is to have the intention to open your heart to love and compassion and no longer experience the pain of unforgiveness. To set yourself and the other free and grow deeply.
Know that you intention matters. Consider before you enter this practice that anything under 100% will yield results of this nature. So try your best to create a space within yourself that truly wishes to heal and go from there.
This practice is something I have personally practiced in a very difficult relationship with my father and it has been revealing, painful and ultimately healing. Many clients come into my doors with stories from the past that are truly heartbreaking. To heal the wounds of their painful past we always come to the point of forgiveness. It is a path of the courageous, but also the path of the free.
I wish that this practice brings love, healing and freedom to your life.🙏