Giving Up Hope For A Better Past – Uncensored

Think back to a time when you first held a new born baby. Maybe it was your own baby. Maybe you just gave birth, all messy and painful. Maybe you just watched someone gave birth. Maybe you were grossed out. Maybe you first held a baby belonging to a relative… who you don’t like very much.

But remember when you first saw the baby, so cute and vulnerable. Remember the first time you held it in your arms. Remember its needs for protection. Its cute little eyes, soft skin… Maybe it threw up on you. May be it smiled. Remember the affection you had for this baby. The love that you had, that you shared with this little person. Feel your heart open to this little baby. This cute, cuddly being – new to this world. Remember the unconditional love that you had for this baby. Even if it threw up on you, or didn’t like you very much – you still loved it unconditionally.

 

Remember that you were once a little baby just like this one. Maybe you were cuter… maybe not so much. But you were a little person, worthy of love and affection. Because you are listening to this means you survived little babyhood. People cared for you. People loved you unconditionally even if you were a little brat or a goody two-shoe. People loved you just the same. You were and are worthy of love. People embraced you, fed you, cleaned up your crap, introduced you to the world the best they could.

 

Connect with this love. Breathing in I feel unconditionally loved. Breathing out I remain connected to this feeling of being loved.

 

What does that feel like your heart and your body?

 

Think back to a time when you hurt someone. May be you harmed someone physically or emotionally or both. Thinking of this person you have harmed, say their name out loud three times. Picture yourself standing opposite this person, saying, Feeling profound sorrow for the harm I caused you, I express my remorse for all the ways my actions have hurt you. I am sorry for not being considerate of your feelings. If I hurt you physically, I hope it didn’t hurt too much. I hope that you don’t have big bruise or broken bones, scars that are not worth showing to your girlfriend or boyfriend, or large wounds that people may or may not have poured salt on.

 

If I hurt you emotionally, I am sorry. Whether you are overly sensitive or not, that doesn’t really matter. But if I hurt you it was only because I lost touch with who I was in that moment – which is a loving person, who only wants the best for you. Please, I hope that you can find it in your heart to forgive me. I feel pain for the pain I caused you. It hurt me much more than it hurt you… probably. I’m guessing. But I do feel pain. I apologize for the pain inflicted on you.

 

My deepest wish is for your healing. I ask for you forgiveness. Knowing that you may not forgive me now, I hope that you may forgive me at some point. Should you not be ready to forgive me now, I meet that with patience and respect. I am sorry.

 

Now imagine someone who has seriously hurt you either physically, emotionally or both. Maybe its a childhood friend who betrayed you… by stealing your checkers when you weren’t looking. Maybe it was your mom or dad who would never buy you enough Taco Bell for dinner, or get you what you wanted. Maybe it was a teacher who slapped your wrist with the ruler or graded you paper too harshly. Maybe it’s a former lover or spouse, who may have cheated on you with their co-workers.

 

Picture this person who has hurt you, and say their name out loud three times. Remember to breathe. Now imagine standing opposite this person making eye contact. Feel their presence. Look into their eyes. And imagine yourself saying to this person, “I am learning to recognize that hurt people hurt people. What you did to me hurt me in a very deep way, and I need you to know that as I offer my forgiveness to you. I don’t condone or agree with what you did to me. I am choosing to let go of remaining attached to experiencing this pain because I recognize it does not serve anybody for me to hold on to it.

 

I forgive you for what you have done to me. I forgive for what you have done to me. I forgive you.

 

How does this feel on your heart? What does this feel like in your belly? If you’re not ready to forgive this person for whatever it is they did, that’s okay. It’s more important that your forgiveness be genuine than doing this because you believe you should be doing this.

If you are not quite ready to forgive, you can offer the simple intention: May I be willing to forgive you when I am ready. May I learn to become ready to forgive you someday.

 

Last but not least is perhaps the hardest person to forgive: yourself. At first reconnect with the felling that you are that lovable child, that small infant you once were. Maybe it felt like a long time ago. You probably don’t remember. Your brain probably wasn’t very big to soak in the experience in a sane, logical way. But imagine yourself being a small little infant, helpless, lovable, cute, cuddly being new to this world… who knows where you were before that. But reconnect with how lovable you were and still are.  Now picture all of that times you abandoned yourself throughout your life. Maybe you were self-destructive. Maybe in your college years, you drank way too much and passed out on the sidewalk while other people walked by and urinated on you. Maybe you forgot who you really were sometimes. Picture the things you feel ashamed of having done that hurt others or the times your were not patient with yourself.

 

Take a deep breath.

 

If you are like me there are many ways you failed to respect yourself and take care of yourself… your body and your mind. Sometimes you may not have always honored the spirit inside of you. But reconnect with the feeling of being loved, being lovable, and feel the unconditional love for the being who you really are and say “I forgive myself, I forgive myself, I forgive myself. ”

 

If you are not quite ready to fully forgive yourself, that’s ok. You can offer the intention: I am willing to learn how to forgive myself when I am ready. Perhaps I did the best I could, given the circumstances I was in, given the tools and resources that were available to me at that time. Looking at it that way, I understand – even though I don’t agree with how I acted – I forgive myself for forgetting how I truly am. I am letting that person and that time go. I forgive myself. I am now dedicated to learn how to stay in touch with my true nature as a loving person.

(Resource: Forgiveness Meditation – http://www.jackkornfield.org/meditations/forgivenessMeditation.php)



Author: Sean Fargo
About Sean Fargo At the peak of his career as Director of Asian Operations for AsiaEXP, Sean Fargo traded in his worldly aspirations to explore the inner life by ordaining as a Buddhist monk for two years in the Thai Theravada tradition. Since disrobing in 2010, he has supported thousands of meditation practitioners at Spirit Rock Meditation Center, facilitated mindfulness classes in San Quentin and Solano State Prisons, and has lead several workshops at Inward Bound Mindfulness Education teen retreats. A dedicated student of spirituality and mindfulness, he has studied with Jack Kornfield, Analayo Bhikkhu, Phillip Moffitt, and many other teachers in the US and Asia. His teaching path is guided by Guy Armstrong, Senior Teachers Council member for both Spirit Rock Meditation Center and Insight Meditation Society. Founder of MindfulnessExercises.com, he offers secular mindfulness e-courses with certifications available for personal and professional skill sets. Enrolled in New Ventures West's Coaching Certification Program, Sean expects to certify as an Integral Life Coach in November 2014. He graduated with honors from University of California at Santa Barbara’s Global Studies Department in 2000. Sean offers private instruction to adults, teens, companies, and organizations. Contact Sean Fargo for more info.

1 Comment

  • We keep the past alive by holding tightly to it, so perhaps it is occurring in this present moment. Now, I’m not suggesting we forget the past for the past is our teacher, however, I am suggesting that we loosen our grip on it a bit.

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