Over the last week I have had a few clients (5 to give you the exact figure) approach me, in one way or another, about dealing with anger and forgiveness. Now when the Universe sends me this kind of thing I usually take notice. If I don’t then the Universe just makes the nudge a little stronger! It got me to thinking about it over the last two days – forgiveness that is. It can be so easy to hang onto and harbour resentment to those whom we believe have hurt us. I know there are going to be messages in my musings today that will push some buttons in some. There will be those who agree with me. Those who don’t. And that’s absolutely fine. We are all where we are and we are all doing the best we can with what we have.
Let me start, then, by saying: Forgiveness is a choice we make moment to moment. Do we forgive someone and begin to move on? Or do we allow ourselves to stand still – or even move backwards? “That’s easy to say not easy to do” is what I hear quite regularly. And my answer is – it’s as easy as we choose to make it. Forgiving someone doesn’t mean that you think what they did was right, or helpful. It means that you’re prepared to let it go and not allow it to hold the other person and, as importantly, yourself back.
As we go through life we experience things – experience “contrast” if you like and that can be the prompt for us to think and feel lots of different things. But let’s be clear – that’s why we wanted this physical experience in the first place! To experience contrast! Once something has happened it’s up to us to learn from it so that we, and Consciousness as a whole, can grow and evolve. It can be painful at first, but by forgiving we can heal that pain so much more quickly.
It is true that my own mother and I have not always seen eye-to-eye and there have been some quite… how shall I put it… “contrasting experiences” between us! Mostly I feel I’ve let go of the things that I feel hurt by but, every now and then, something will pop into my head about
"Forgiveness is choosing to love. It is the first skill of self-giving love." MK Gandhi
something that happened that sparks an angry and resentful reaction within me. It is then, in those moments, that I do my very best to breathe it out, and let it go. My mother and I are not who we were then. We have both grown. We have both learned. And, most importantly, we have moved on. Why allow myself to go back to that time and experience again and again the things that I felt hurt by? Why resent my mother now and cause current distress for things that have happened in the past? Clearly that is my stuff causing problems in The Now, and not hers. Forgiveness is a choice we make moment to moment.
Let’s take a brief look at the life of Jesus. He spent his life teaching, helping, healing, and learning and, all through it, he dealt with anger and resentment from others who were not ready to hear his message. At the end of it all, he was ridiculed, whipped with a scourge, had a crown of thorns put on his head, and then was nailed to a cross and left to die. I’m not sure if you know, but (as I understand it) the crosses then also had a little platform for those being crucified to use to rest upon. Hanging from your arms alone makes it incredibly difficult to breathe and so many people died on the cross through suffocation. Now that platform was not put there to ease the pain, but to prolong it. After all this, Jesus still managed to be completely forgiving to those that had tortured and hurt him. Surely, if one man can forgive so much, we can forgive too? Forgiveness is a choice we make moment to moment.
To finish off this week’s musing, then, I’ll ask: “do you want to be right or do you want love?” Do your very best to let go of anger as it’s just the Ego Self’s way of keeping you in a place of fear and pain. No one can ask more of you than you at least try to forgive and move on. And that includes forgiving yourself. Remember, forgiveness doesn’t mean what was done was right, just that you’re prepared to let it go and find peace. Forgiveness is a choice we make, moment to moment.
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