Sunday, May 15, 2011

Forgiveness Is Difficult

Through very personal moments, I find that forgiveness can be extremely difficult. When you are hurt by people you care about, it is easy to feel confused, upset, and angered. However, forgiveness is the most difficult step after the point of being hurt.

Yes, I realize now, forgiveness is all about letting go and while that sounds like a simple and dignified definition, it isn't always that easy. Everyone has their own opinion as to what forgiveness means from the strict religious view and interpretations there of, to the new age philosophies that are abundant.

For me, I've traveled through some difficult waters many times over in my life. Once again, I'm reminded of the turbulent oceans beneath my feet. When you get used and abused regardless of what form it takes, the hurts and pains attack as an army attacks its enemy. It is relentless and full of power, or so it seems to be that way.

As you add some codependent guilt and shame on top of the hurt, it makes the process of letting go that much more difficult. It becomes something that is not only the energy of your own process but has attached to it, the energy of others. Cutting the cords of attachment between the two is sometimes only accomplished through a highly skillful surgical approach.

All too often, there are moments of forgiveness that are met with lonesomeness since the people that hurt us often shun us or close their ears to what we try to express. In those moments, we must tread on through our journey and continue to learn to let go of those pains and hurts.

It is not easy no matter how you look at it or slice it in pieces. The hurts are still there but in order for us to move forward and reclaim our life, we have to let go. If we don't forgive at some point, we are harboring all that was done to us and giving it much more power than it deserves.

For a long time, I struggled with this concept and slowly I am beginning to understand it. Once again, through an event I was involved with, the lesson has reared its ugly head. I do realize that forgiveness has nothing to do with the other person but has everything to do with how I see myself and love myself. Yet, my mind struggles to comprehend these things.

The final note I want to share is that forgiveness is a process. It is about learning to let go and allowing the hurts and pains to be felt, experienced and realized. Forgiveness is not something you do in some special ceremony where poof, the magic dragon is slayed. It is not someone standing up and proclaiming, I forgive you (although that can definitely help). I would suggest that forgiveness is something that is ongoing and one day you wake up realizing that the hurts and pains of the past hold no further power over you. Then, at that moment, you have forgiven what was done to you.

Further Reading
1) Finding Self Forgiveness and Self Love
2) Forgiveness For Survivors Of Sexual Abuse
3) Release It, Let It Go (Pg 97 - Hope And Possibility Through Trauma)

Blog Post & Images (c) 5/2/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

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