Forgiveness is like fighting to get through a wall of invisible, multi-versions of self in others. Like a giant, interlocking web of alternate or former versions of self (like in Rick and Morty…don’t wanna claim that I was the one who came up with this rickdiculously twisted and clever idea), refusing to allow anyone in or out.
Holed up in a sacred, scared, genius defense shield, woven with old selves and old patterns, giant justifications barring progress, connection and the inception of alternative interfacing patterns: A most boring existence. I cannot stand boredom. And in boredom, I go back to think on the problem.
And when I go back to stop and think, momentum in the moving moment stops. And the itchy, boredom sets in deeper. Grabs a hold like infinity’s arms, all swinging and gripping with fevered intensity, desperate not to be forgotten, as the old selves know that they were just practice versions, which have already served their goal. To bring to light the lesson that is to be learned.
So many times, advised to stop being so hard on myself. But why? I ask. Because by doing this I deprive the world of whatever is in me to give? Because I miss out on life, and come across as a navel-gazing narcissist by constantly remaining focused on what caused the problem? So that I might undo the conditioning that made it so? I suppose.
But what if I’m not ready? And so much of me is not. Bullocks to that! I hear myself roar inside. Did you hear what you have just admitted? Do you not see the courage that took? Do you not see what you have learned? Have you forgotten all that you have learned, too focused on hoarding yourself, wasting the soul food inside that seeks to grow from the seeds in the perfect garbage can of time?
What have I learned, outside the walls of me? Those walls which have so far confined me to relive old belief systems – and in a web of infinite possibilities, no less? Why do we relive old patterns? Is it just conditioning? If so, then all we must do is change the conditioning.
How? If it were as simple as that, then why aren’t we doing it? We are. It is our design. It is not easy, but it is simple. And it is the only real choice we have. To choose better.
And to me, to be as hard as possible on oneself – to the extent that one can truly handle what one sees in oneself (when overwhelmed, there is a lesson to be learned, and timely withdrawal is the only weapon the mind would be advised to draw) – in order for one to evolve.
I am coded to keep the pressure of ‘Don’t be a hypocritical chump’, on. Otherwise, I am painfully aware in every moment that I die slowly, waiting to be eaten by time, stuck inside that confined web.
I have been programmed to never forget how choosing poorly – and even justified reasons can be ‘bad’ ones – diminishes the parts of you that knows you were designed for better.
Because you are better. So am I. Don’t believe me? Start writing down all the things you have done and become since the last time you thought about who you are.
Yes. And now, in an ironic twist, I see clearly that I have not been hard enough on myself, in a sense. One cannot grow in stress, but one cannot grow without knowing oneself either. And this causes pressure. It has to. It’s like filling a balloon with more air and expecting it not to grow in size…and yes, eventually, it will feel like popping, but it only feels that way. And when it does, let it burst open and use the breath to start again.
To follow the Master’s path, one must become the beginner again in every moment. And that means, bringing it back to the very basics. Breathing, with patience, and reminding others that we are all dealing with the expansion and contraction.
I have learned that if I don’t constantly, compassionately and patiently apply better standards, by forgiving those parts of me that had me convinced that I was not designed for more – like when I feel sorry for myself that I cannot join my fellow cardio level uppers – then wubbalubbadubdub…watch me drown in a sea of my own design. And watch me hold a pose that makes me able to breathe underwater.
So here’s to forgiving myself – to forgiveness in general – for not being as hard as possible on myself in the realms of believing that I can do better than this.
Photos by Mary Rose – All Rights Reserved