Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Forgiveness and letting go

Forgiving is hard to do. We hold on to so much of what happens in our day to day and allow it to shape not only how we react to the person who may have initially upset us but whoever else comes in our way. Holding on to the hurt or anger impacts us much longer then we think. Forgiving welcomes a freedom that we will be thankful for and allow us to feel the emotional weights removed from our sides.

I know this is no easy task. In the Utopia we wish for this would be very doable. But we live here on planet earth. Not too many people are trying to make changes, admit imperfection, or fault. People push their way into the train before you get out bumping into you or forcing you to go an extra stop. No one helps when they see a person in need. We stare or pull out video cameras. Incidences of bias, which is sad in itself, still occur on a day to day basis. It’s difficult when we deal with these emotional obstacles to feel the desire to forgive or to overcome the hurdle and reach a point of forgiveness.
So I am sure someone is probably thinking why is she going on and on about forgiveness? What does that have to do with yoga? Yoga itself has a few definitions but one of them is union or unity. That unity is referring to a spiritual union and therefore elevation of the self is part of that. So we have to learn, grow, and attempt to step beyond the pettiness of the human condition.
If enlightenment is not where you are aiming, then realizing that holding on to emotional baggage is not good for your health might be a better reason to forgive and let go. All emotions we go through impact our bodies even on a cellular level. So when someone pisses you off your whole body tenses. Nothing you eat is fully absorbed and used regardless of its nutritional value. The scariest part of this is that the effects of emotional distress last several days. All we are really doing is hurting ourselves! If we can just let go of things when they happen and forgive those who slight us then we can save ourselves from doing additional harm to our bodies.
Forgiveness is not limited to other people. We have to learn to forgive ourselves. We are human beings and that means that we are not perfect. But we all have difficulty remembering that and proceed to tear ourselves apart for things that ultimately don't matter. In our superficial world minor details are more relevant and take center stage. We criticize ourselves and give no slack. Mistakes are to be learned from. Forgiving is a way to love yourself. You should treat yourself the way you would one of your closest friends. Allow yourself the time and space to learn from all aspects of life.
This blog post is especially important to me because I was reminded that I need to forgive. Working on yourself and achieving spiritual goals is a day to day battle. I was faced with someone who really knows how to upset me, doesn't realize it, and honestly doesn't care. But my relationship with them is a permanent one through blood. But at the same time I should forgive anyway because regardless they are human. As I face this struggle to honestly forgive and let go I realize I am not the only one and maybe someone else needs to be reminded that it is within their power to forgive and let go.

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