89: The Yoga of Forgiveness

ghandi forgivenessWell today is a big day. The rock star yogi is arriving in town. There will be white stallions and adulation. Thronging crowds and praise. A pot pourri of muscles, tattoos and fine movements. There will be yoga asana, laughter and thrilling arm balancing. Everyone will be there, except me. I’m not going because this is the person who hurt me so much that I don’t think that I would trust myself in his presence as I fantasise about getting even. Maybe I will call up TV cameras to expose him. Maybe I’ll jump up in the middle of an arm balance and shout ‘see, that is why he hurt me’, maybe I will run into his arms and he will say ‘I’m sorry’. Maybe, maybe I’ll just stay home and spend another three years being hurt.

What I need is a big  dose of closure. However the above actions won’t bring that at all. The above actions are just vehicles for my resentment, they may feel good for a nano-second but then I will be right back where I started.

What I really need is to learn how to forgive. Maybe if I learn to forgive I will stop being so dysfunctional and the cloud of Avidya (ignorance) will part like majestic curtains before the great show of my life.

Here is a yogic guide to forgiveness.

1) What is the core need or belief you have about yourself that is not being met, either at the time of the pain or now? Maybe you felt you needed the person who hurt you to love you? Maybe you feel rejected, unwanted or unworthy? What is it that this person shone a light on? What gap do you need to fill  that you thought this person was filling?

2)What would be the benefits of letting go to you? Would you be happier or healthier? Would you have better relationships today? Would you be living more in the present rather than the past? Being right, being a victim or martyr, having a negative story about someone, are all negative destructive forces.

3) What does your resentment feel or look like and what would your life be like without that?

4) Practice compassion by seeing the story from the offenders point of view. Whatever they did, what was their motivation or hurts or needs at that time?

5) Insert jolly good workout here, maybe hot power vinyasa flow or anything with the volume turned up

6) What part of this is a lesson to you? In what way has this person taught you something that you need to know? What is the gift in the situation?

7) Can you offer your love or blessings to the person who is just as human as you?

If you want to see brave, look at those who can forgive. Bhagavad Gita.

Practice for today: If someone does something that hurts you, a small thing, see them as a human just like you, someone who makes mistakes. If you have a larger cross to bear consider working through the steps above.

3 thoughts on “89: The Yoga of Forgiveness

  • We all have our crosses heaved on top of our shoulders, huh? *sigh*

    But anytime I can help ease your cross, however short the time (or the distance far away)… I’ll help carry it for you… so you can rest… find the space that may bring a tinge of light to your darkness.

    Though really… I’ll probably drag the friggin cross… 😉
    Curious now who this amazing rock star yogi is… !!!

  • The spiritual teacher Jesus said carry your own cross as above or something like that and it meant don’t pass on your suffering. Forgive others so you don’t go on and hurt them like they hurt you. I believe that is the true meaning of redemption/salvation… Thanks from a buddy cross carrier.

    • Why do we rather linger on hurt like a moth attracted to the flame instead of simply forgiving? When the moth gets too close to the heat, it burns.
      I find it strange that we tend to choose to burn.

      Thank you, too, buddy… I’m trying to reconcile something that happened today just before I read your post. xo

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