Forgiveness. How to experience its energy of total transformation.
Every spring there is a positive change in nature’s energy through which a new growth phase begins. Trees laid bare by harsh unforgiving winters are free to bud and sprout fresh flowers and leaves. Life forms including humans have evolved and adapted to change that nature brings. On the physical level, we have little choice but to go with nature’s flow. Along with external adaptation, internally the body is accommodative of the demands placed on it by the whims and fancies of the mind. The cells and organs of the body have an inherent “forgiving nature”, working silently, continuously and without complaining, under the rule of the mind. Just as the warming weather associated with spring promotes germination of seeds, thoughts of forgiveness create a pleasant and warm feeling in the mind which helps dormant seeds of peace and harmony to sprout and take root within. However, we fail to experience the total freedom that can be associated with this energy by holding onto the notion, “I am forgiving”.
No matter how unhealthy our lifestyle may be, trillions of bodily cells give their best efforts until they can no longer function. They faithfully carry out various functions that lead to the overall health of the body without any particular reason or incentive to do so. This is unlike the mind which is always analyzing and weighing gain and loss in every transaction. Imagine living a life wherein we function to the best of our ability for the welfare of the world, quickly and completely forgiving people for any harm done to us and not expecting anything in return. People who fit this profile are extremely rare. The bar for true forgiveness has been set not just by these rare and elevated souls, but also by the countless cells of our own physical body.
What cells are to the body, thoughts are to the mind. Both are innumerable and work almost constantly. However, since thoughts don’t have a physical basis, they appear and disappear more freely, and their lifecycle is abbreviated compared to that of the cells of the body. However, thoughts may gain permanency under the rule of the ego, which traps them through identification. No matter how powerful our ego may be, it is powerless to stop even a single cell in the body from dying. Thoughts by themselves are not troublesome. When we invest our attention and awareness and try to modify and hold onto thoughts, they start to push back. When this occurs, it is called mental dis-ease which then makes us experience the distracting and negative aspect of thought energy. Thoughts can also be utilized as tiny mirrors showing unique and positive aspects of the one universal energy stream. If we are able to see good aspects in any situation we are presented with, every thought can become a source of enjoyment and happiness.
The ego labels and divides the free-flowing energy within each thought as either good or bad. Certain thoughts appear to stick to us more than others. A portion of the energy associated with thoughts that persist we can label as desires. Stagnant mental energy in the form of unfulfilled desires is the root cause of animosity and grievance that we feel. Once we realize that the source of the ill feeling and unhappiness is related to our persistence with our own desires, then there is nothing external to forgive. However, the ego prevents us from taking this important introspective step, as it threatens the very existence of our ego. Once we project the source of our unhappiness outside of ourselves, the process of reclaiming it through forgiveness starts. It can be a trap if we are not careful. The trap is laid by the ego which makes us carry the feeling that “I am forgiving”. Unwittingly we strengthen and nourish the ego by holding onto “I” along with the thought of forgiveness.
Just as one tree cannot take up the area of an entire forest, one human being cannot take up the entire land mass of earth. However, “ego” takes a greater space we call the mind. The roots of the ego suck energy from every thought that courses through the mind. To truly forgive is to forget, not just the incident or person linked to our inner unhappiness, but also the ego that makes us think we are forgiving. When the ego is either unavailable or has very limited connectivity with our awareness, we will not have the feeling that we are doing something special by forgiving and letting go. All desires may be given up but when the subtle desire of holding onto the ego remains, however faint, the energy of forgiveness is contaminated and it cannot transform. When ego disappears and there is nothing outside or inside to forgive, the energy we call forgiveness may carry another name, bliss.