Forgiveness will set us free. By holding onto resentment toward another, we’re ultimately just poisoning our own system.
Forgiveness is so liberating – but we must not force ourselves to forgive before we are ready. April is a really holy month in many religions.
This month we have Ramadan, Easter, and Passover. Each of these holidays are different, but all of them encourage us to ask forgiveness for ourselves, and to forgive others at this time.
This is a beautiful sentiment, and offering ourselves and others that compassion and grace is an incredible gift. And yet – sometimes we just aren’t ready to forgive ourselves or others yet.
What happens if you’re just not ready to forgive yet? Give yourself permission to be in your process.
I love the teachings of David Hawkins, who created a map of consciousness that we can look to in order to help us understand how to process through emotions.
I’ve included an image of it below.
We can’t jump in the scale of consciousness to forgiveness, love, and peace until we’ve fully traversed the other experiences of: Grief. Regret. Anxiety. Fear. Anger. Scorn. Courage. Neutrality. Willingness. Optimism. Hopefulness. Acceptance.
Only once we have moved through these emotions and states can we authentically land into forgiveness.
From forgiveness, we can then open ourselves up to get beyond it to a place of understanding and meaning, and even to a place of love for the situation for all that it taught you.
I’ve had so many conversations where people say that they are ready to forgive and move on, but really they aren’t there yet. Spiritually, they might be able to see why the situation helped them grow…but as a human, they’re not there yet.
And so while it feels enticing to spiritually bypass over the stages of consciousness and get to a place of “love and light”, it’s not sustainable nor is it authentic.
And that’s what will free us and others – authentic forgiveness. Not empty words. The true embodiment of it.
The invitation this week is to write a letter forgiving yourself and others for things that have happened in the last year, but if you’re in a place right now where you’re not quite there yet….permission for that to be okay.
You will forgive when you are ready to, and not a moment too soon. I’ve had to learn this lesson many times.
I had to practice it a lot in regard to my love life, and I’ve recently been in the process of forgiveness with someone in my life that hurt me.
I wanted to “forgive” and move on from a guy who lied to me, because I could see it helped me dodge a bullet of being in a relationship with them…but then the “human” me struggled. I wasn’t ready to forgive him so quickly, even if I wanted to.
So I started to give permission for the human me to catch up with the spiritual side of me, and it was so helpful.
Sometimes our process takes a while.
Last Fall, I had someone close to me say incredibly hurtful things to me for the sheer intent to hurt me and make me question myself and my life choices.
While we ended up having a repairing conversation, I haven’t been ready to fully forgive them. In that conversation, she apologized, and I accepted that apology, and while I said the words “I forgive you”, it’s not what I felt.
I’ve moved on, and we’ve moved on, but I’m still processing what happened, and it’s been 7 months. I’ve learned to be okay with that process.
I’ll move into authentic forgiveness when it’s time.
I share this all to give you permission to be in your process too. Authentic forgiveness – this is what we are after. So while this is an incredible time to leave things behind, to make amends, and to start anew…if you’re not ready yet, give space for that too.