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Forgiveness, we may well ask, what is so important about forgiveness?
What is forgiveness? Why should we forgive? And what if we don’t understand or wish not to forgive? There is a very old saying. “We reap what we sow.” We also sow from what we reap. This reaping and sowing takes place on a very subtle level of life and manifest into reality as events in our every day lives from that which we have chosen to sow.
Forgiveness is a Divine Gift of boundless proportions and abundance, given to us out of compassion by the creative nature of love. This sublime gift plays a vital roll in the purification process of our hearts and minds, it enables us to refresh our entire lives.
Forgiveness functions in our lives as the act of absolute pure intention of acceptance of regret and apology for wrongful actions committed. Either by another or ourselves. It is the asking to have these actions retracted and for wholeness to be restored to the person hurt by such actions. Forgiveness is complete absolution.
Forgiveness is an individual choice, whether we understand it or not, it carries great rewards, great lightness and great freedom. To be able to forgive is a great blessing. There are substantial benefits to our peace of mind, our creativeness, our energy levels and our general well being.
To surrender to the art of forgiveness completely, takes a very special effort, and a one pointed mind entering the heart, with the swift precision of Divine Light.
Forgiveness, lacking in sincerity, is not true forgiveness. A person continually displaying certain hurtful tendencies, or behaviour towards another for whatever reason, lacks the capacity to contain empathy or forgiveness as well as the ability to express them. True forgiveness must be absolutely sincere. *
What holds us back from forgiving ourselves?
The importance of forgiving ourselves and apologizing to ourselves for past event, behaviour, guilt, pride, ignorance or mind sets of unworthiness, is as important as forgiving others. By forgiving ourselves completely enables us to enter into unconditional forgiveness of others, totally uncluttered. *
An attempt to forgive while engulfed in guilt, pride or ignorance, is like attempting to swim while wearing concrete gumboots. We just wouldn’t get very far.
All to often we treat ourselves too harshly, we deny ourselves the opportunity to experience and express the gentleness, kindness and compassion of our own true nature. We deny ourselves the opportunity to receive and to be honored by others, the opportunity of closeness and friendship, the opportunity to learn and progress in life.
One of the root causes of this denial to ourselves is the in-ground notion of unworthiness. When we consider ourselves to be unworthy to receive anything of significance, of greatness or of beauty, we are actively driving a wedge between our limited selves and our pure consciousness. The more we deny ourselves life’s blessings, the further we drive in the wedge of separation, and foster the pains of life.
The imposition of the conditioning process of unworthiness was accelerated four hundred years A.D. and implies that the real us is unworthy, a wrong doer and unfit to be in the presence of the Infinite Goodness of Creation. Rather than the dark baggage that we have created and carry with us, as being unfit and inadmissible to be in the presence of this great creative love. This conditioning has led mankind to believe that our actions, our behaviour and ourselves, are one. One lowly human. While we may not be happy with our pattern of behavior, actions or the amount of unworthiness we may foster, these factors are not us. They are an entirely separate package, which we own and are accountable and are here in this life to dissolve. However we are not this package, we are not our bodies, we are our great selves, we are pure love, we are pure consciousness. * (our true nature)
There may have been times in our lives when someone has offended us, either in a very small way or in a most devastating way.
No matter how minute or severe the pain or action, forgiveness comes easy when we are able to take a step backwards and witness the entirety of life’s play, and what we have learned or gained by this pain.
When we weigh up these events, we may have lost everything that we have ever worked for, being stripped absolutely naked of worldly possessions only to find an entirely new life unfolding. A life of such beauty, such compassion, such understanding and such love. This newfound level may never have happened if someone had not imposed this painful experience upon us.
With this new awareness, we are then able to embrace this entire event as a great blessing an honour in our lives. It is at this point, that forgiveness becomes a natural progression in the final act of completing this scene in the play of life. We have become completely detached from any pain, resentment or blame. The entire event is now seen and experienced as another great building block on our journey to become whole. The small amount we have lost in our outer lives has been replaced with immeasurable treasures on the inside.
It is these treasures that soar us to incredible experiences, opportunities and accomplishments in life.
DIFFICULT TO FORGIVE.
Saying sorry, asking for forgiveness or being able to forgive may often strike an enormous wall of resistance. Energy and mental blockages created by past behaviors and our desperate attempt to enforce our own power upon others. This power is the power of the ego, of our outer selves, which has no real power, except a false, misleading, and deceptive power. The ego prevents us from entering into any form of inner cleansing or expansion. It prevents us from experiencing the beauty and force of our great conscious and creative power. It prevents us from entering that space within, from where true forgiveness flows.
For forgiveness to carry pure intention within itself, we must become ego free. It is the sincerity of our intention behind our forgiveness that allows forgiveness to touch the hearts of others.
Where we have created hurt or pain upon another, aware or not aware, intentionally or unintentionally, no matter the length of time nor the separation by distance. We are still accountable for our actions. In order for life’s vital energy supply to flow freely, providing us with good health, a clear and active mind, and a happy and content heart, we are required to seek out that person, apologise and ask for forgiveness. If this is not possible in person, we may enter the sacred space of our hearts and sincerely apologise, asking for forgiveness. This requires the releasing of all embarrassments, pride, subtle resentments, grudges, concepts, and pains. The purity of this intention seeks out the other heart allowing the grace to break the bondage and acknowledge forgiveness. .
The results being, a huge weight lifted off our physical and subtle being, with a calm and content mind. The power of Grace has now restored us with these gifts.
Asking for forgiveness for our actions upon others is a vital and nutritious part of our lives. It frees us from that which has bound us in very limited understanding and experience of life. Unforgiveness deprives us of the natural sunshine and happiness in our lives. It takes great humility and surrender to ask for forgiveness. Forgiveness for our actions against another or ourselves.
Forgiveness comprises of three components.
1. Forgiveness must contain within the subtlety of it request the absolute sincerity of our intention.
2. Forgiveness must contain the deep commitment not to re-offend or to commit that for which we are asking forgiveness.
3. Forgiveness must offer to repair or pay restitution if possible on what ever level necessary in order to restore wholeness to that person with whom we are asking forgiveness.
So often we may think we possess a certain behaviour or see ourselves as a particular type of person, yet when we really examine this through self-enquiry, we may find this not to be the case. In fact it may be the complete opposite.
For example, we may consider ourselves to be or contain so much anger, so we carry this self-imposed stigma of anger, its fear, its energy and its suppressive nature on our backs and in every cell of our being. Where in fact the core truth revealed through self-examination, is that, the root cause of this experience is the result of deep upset after having been deprived, suppressed or suffered a grave injustice. It is totally natural as a result of these experiences to be deeply upset, deeply hurt and deeply scared. This is not Anger, it is Pain. Are we, and is Society, too quick to categorise, to label or to put a people down, without taking time to know the true circumstances and facts? This behaviour is capable of destroying so many innocent lives. When we show patience and empathy towards others, we not only uplift their lives, but we enhance our own state of being.
Many people today are living in the state of Deep Pain and yet their Hearts cry so loudly to experience Love.
Are we able to help them?
Another example may be, the misunderstanding of an extremely active and enquiring mind. It is the enthusiasm for life that drives such a mind. Enthusiasm (Theos – to burst forth in the energy of God.) And yet, often a person with a very enquiring mind and searching questions, may consider themselves, or be labeled as skeptical, where in fact they are not.
Yet because of this misunderstanding and self imposed image or label, they suffer unnecessary pain and are prevented from expanding in the awareness and experience of their own true nature and life. When we become less harsh on ourselves, when we turn our focus inside to examine the true nature of event, we may well discover a more compassionate self and come to understand that a genuine enquiring mind is a very healthy gift that should always be encouraged and cultivated.
Self-enquiry enables us to examine areas of our lives where we may benefit from forgiving. Either forgiving others or ourselves. Each time we are able forgive, we progress enormously in our personal attainment for inner peace. Forgiveness enables the blockages that bind us to pain, to be dissolved. By contemplating and bringing to mind those whom we may wish to forgive, by examining the situation, its root cause and the effects that non-forgiveness is having upon our lives, we are then able to truly forgive.
Again gently closing our eyes and entering into silence, asking for the Grace for one specific issue requiring forgiveness, to be revealed, that our lives may become free. Whatever comes to mind, examine, hold in your awareness or if you wish write it down.
Sit in Silence for a few moments.
Shalom. Again we’ll invoke the Stillness and Grace of Shalom. Gently closing our eyes, sitting upright allowing our spines to be free, becoming aware of the breath, breathing in deep and out long, repeating this several times. Then by focusing and allowing the Grace contained within Shalom to fill us completely on the in breath. Then on the out breath directing this Grace to the person we wish to forgive, sending them absolute forgiveness. By repeating this for a few minutes continually focusing on the breath, allowing the Grace to carry our complete forgiveness.
Again sitting in Silence for a few moments.
This process may be repeated frequently in order to reveal areas requiring forgiveness, either of others or ourselves.
This will give us the experience of the inner freedom we long for.
Forgiveness unfolds inner freedom and purification. It is the natural law of life, of consciousness to forgive pardon and to become free.
This freedom and purity of intention are solidified through the purest form of prayer, being the silent surrender to the creative will, experienced in meditation.
In order to become completely free of all matters requiring forgiveness, matters that we may have forgotten about, again, these may be addressed through self-enquiry, where we are able to bring them into the present, identify them, write hem down and finally ask for the grace that we may forgive or be forgiven. Doing this, prior to meditation enables the process to become complete.
As our lives begin to include self-enquiry and meditation we become more mindful and aware of our behaviour. We are less inclined to create situations or carry out actions that may require forgiveness. We become aware of the oneness of each other, we cultivate sensitivity towards each other. Eventually meditation allows our true nature to unfold completely and we come to live in a state where it is impossible to hurt another as this pure nature is pure love and love only fosters love.
In St. Teresa of Avila’s view. “The test of authentic prayer is the readiness t
o forgive. Forgiveness involves owning the past, trying to understand it and forgiving those who knew what they were doing and those who did not know the impact their behaviour was having on us. The ability to give and receive forgiveness is a mark of inner freedom. Without that forgiveness, given and accepted, our inner freedom is curtailed. We remain stuck in the past, the unhealed wounds hurt.” ***
So, may we all through Grace, Humility and Meditation reach this state of love in our lives where any notion of hurting others does not exist.
In peace and love. Thank you.