So much of the pain we seek to heal in ourselves and in our lives comes down to being able to first forgive ourselves - and then to forgive others. This, I feel, is the roadmap to experiencing the depth of true forgiveness.
However simple this may sound, it's not an easy process. It doesn't just happen because you say that you’ve done it. Most often, you have to do it over and over again. You must review and rewrite each incident where the belief pattern caused by the original wound became reinforced in your awareness.
Most of us carry some kind of pain inside. It can be hard to touch this pain because we build walls to protect it; we all had to do this at some point in order to survive.
When I speak to clients and friends about what’s troubling them in their lives or relationships, I notice there are recurring themes that repeat themselves over and over; the players change but the core emotions stay the same. When this is happening, it means that some aspect of your energy is stuck there. Maybe you keep replaying your last conversation with a loved one? Maybe you recall something demeaning or hurtful that someone said to you, or the critical voices of your parents? Maybe there was a time you felt alone, scared, or unloveable? Whatever it may be, your task is to identify and get to know it. This will lead you to that place inside which most longs to be healed in order to be fully present. Remember: you can’t truly be present if you’re still looking through the lens of your past.
I propose to anyone reading this, that a way forward is to explore the process of forgiving by writing, what I call, "Letters of Forgiveness."First, we need to address the things that we ourselves seek forgiveness for, and then we must write to all those who we ourselves need to forgive. It does not matter if the person is alive or not, since this process isn't not about receiving anything in return. It's quite the opposite.
There are multiple parts to this process. This work is a ”devotional” attempt to understand these different parts. It is devotional because the purpose of this article and these Letters of Forgiveness is to serve as a collective prayer of forgiveness. This is your invitation to enter into a dialogue with that part of yourself that is rooted beyond the ordinary, and anchored in the sacred.
Here are the steps to follow:
We begin to notice what repeats itself and take accountability for our part. We can't experience true forgiveness until this happens. Without this step, we continue to blame others. There can't be true forgiveness where there is still blame.I don’t want to oversimplify this process. I recognize that there are situations where we have been innocent to our trauma. There are many complexities to this subject, but all of the roads of forgiveness will eventually lead back to the theme of compassion.
~Compassion: “There is a Buddhist quote that says "compassion is the flower and forgiveness is the fragrance of its blossoming."
When we are able to understand the pain and shadow inside ourselves, we can have empathy for the pain and shadow inside others. When we’re able to see how our own pain body inflicts pain on others, we are able to better understand how it could also have been done to us. When this happens, we begin to feel a sincere desire to be forgiven and then to forgive.
This process of understanding others through honestly observing ourselves is what seeds the roots of compassion.
In conclusion: One of the profound benefits of this continued process of forgiveness is that it initiates deep ancestral healing. It cleanses the soul and ultimately fills our DNA with healing light. This process is something we return to over and over again, as we learn to track our thoughts by exploring the deeper layer of our conscious projections and by becoming aware of our unconscious impulses.
How we choose to live affects all the beings that have crossed our path. When we have cleared our karma with someone, light fills the stream that passes between us and into the infinite.
This healing spreads… It spreads from you to the one who hurt you, to those that hurt the one who hurt you, until it reaches back through the lineages. This is true ancestral healing.
Remember: forgiveness is born through understanding the true depth of compassion, and it is the catalyst of grace.