FORGIVENESS is not a one-time event. When we get involved in a relationship, any relationship which involves closeness, shared activities, and dual responsibility, our emotions will sometimes be aroused and not in the way we want and expect. When the other person upsets us, treats us unfairly, fails to keep promises and commitments, or blindsides us in some reprehensible way, to maintain the relationship we will have to practice FORGIVENESS.
The New Testament of the bible states that we need to forgive “70X7.” It does not tell us to forgive once and then walk away. It does not tell us to forgive and expect the other person to instantly discontinue their wayward activities. No, the bible reminds us to keep forgiving and even to “turn the other cheek.“ We are also told that “the meek shall inherit the earth.”
Does this mean that we owe it to other people to become a perpetual doormat? No. There is a deeper meaning to FORGIVENESS. What I like to use as a metaphor is a person who is a Black Belt in Karate or a master at Tai Chi or some other martial art. When a student reaches a high level of mastery in a fighting sport, that person knows how to instantly kill another person. Knowing that bring a powerful responsibility. A martial arts master will not seek a fight, will not provoke a fight, and will willingly turn the other cheek and forgive 70X7. However, if the danger or provocation by the other becomes too great, the master may just point a finger with total clarity and intensity of focus, and the other person will either go flying or will be struck dead.
So here you are. You have established your INCENTIVE, INTENTION, PRESENT MOMENT awareness, DRIVE, inner ARCHITECT, PATIENCE, ability to SURRENDER, COMMITMENT, TRUST, DISCERNMENT, PASSION, DESIRE, CREATIVITY, SENSUALITY, SEXUAL EXPRESSION, COMPASSION, and COMMUNICATION. You PRACTICE relationships skills, you balance TOGETHERNESS and AUTONOMY, your SENSITIVITY. UNDERSTANDING and RECEPTIVITY are strong. But what happens when another person does you wrong, hurts you, disappoints you, abuses you or betrays your trust and love?
Today’s question is: How strong is your willingness to allow FORGIVENESS to rule in all situations in your life – maybe not in the exact moment of emotional devastation – but as you develop greater understanding and wisdom?
- Are you able to readily forgive another person for wrongdoing without holding on to blame and criticism, judgement and ruthless distancing?
- Can you absolve yourself or someone else from guilt and blame, showing mercy and tolerance, even if the remorse and regret is not as strong as expected?
- Do you understand, pardon, feel compassion and even pity for the other person, knowing that if someone feels loved they do not need to hurt others?
Ask yourself NOW: How easily and readily am I able to practice FORGIVENESS of myself first and then all others with whom I am in even a momentary relationship?
FORGIVENESS is powerful. It frees up our energy, allowing our mind to focus on what we choose in the present moment. Without FORGIVENESS, our mind loops back over and over ruminating about someone or something that has not pleased us. And then our emotions kick in and we feel upset, disgruntled, frustrated, angry and whatever else gets stirred up in our consciousness. As we allow FORGIVENESS to enter our consciousness, we are instantly soothing our body, relaxing our thinking process and bringing our mind, mind and spirit into balanced equilibrium.
Relationships are built upon the complexity and interactions among all the different possible qualities, both positive and negative, that we can bring. Every quality is important, to some degree. It is really the balance among all the different possibilities that can lead to joy and happiness or sadness and emotional devastation.
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