How do we live forgiveness? It would be living in a state of letting go, of releasing our hold. We often define ourselves by our stories – things that happened in our past. They tend to mold us into who we are now. It would be more accurate to say that the meaning we make about our stories mold us into our current identity – the ego’s identity. Our eternal nature, conscious awareness, is who we really are – regardless of our stories. So, the ego hangs onto the beliefs that arise as our stories unfold. How can we then live forgiveness when we are holding on dearly to what happened?
We can get hooked in the story – and that is where suffering lives and breeds. We get attached to what happened. Maybe it’s a story in the family. Maybe it’s a story of what happened when we were born. Perhaps it is a story of what we wished had happened instead of what did happen. One of the problems of getting stuck in our story is that we end up living, at least in part, in the past. We limit the possibilities in the present because we come into it with the biases and expectations we built up from past experiences.
We are the product of an entire lineage of stories. Yet we do not have to be defined by them or limited by them. We can do the work to release them from our current reality. It is hard to access some of our beliefs since they can live in our unconscious. We do the best we can.
Yogi Bhajan knew how to live forgiveness. He said, “I live in a constant shower of self-forgiveness.” Think about that for a moment. He is speaking to how he is moving through the never-ending present moment – by his action of constant self-forgiveness. He understood so much about the human journey. We cannot escape our fears, our limitations, the karma we were born with, our ego’s sense of separation from God. His solution to the human dilemma was to ‘live in a constant shower of forgiveness”. Think about that for a moment. What would that feel like – to have self-forgiveness running 24/7 in your consciousness? How much self-love to you feel such a practice would yield? And imagine a world full of humans who took up this way of life – how things would change and evolve.
Do yourself this honor: shower yourself with forgiveness. Live your life releasing your shame, your guilt, your weaknesses and shortcomings. Let go of attachments to the past that weight you down. Liberate yourself from the shackles of the crimes, misdeeds, debts, and any other hurts or wrongdoings that are part of your family’s heritage. They do not have to be yours, unless you bring them into your present. Forgive yourself for all of it – again and again.
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