|Negative smoke by Dan Barak|
Does it have negative connotations? A certain feeling of passe redundancy? Something imposed from outside, which doesn't make a whole lot of sense on the inside? Perhaps, if you grew up in a self-named Christian culture, that word reminds you of stuffy Sunday mornings, preached from the front of an organisation which did not practice that preaching itself. Or does it have other connotations for you, maybe more positive ones than the ones I have listed above? Maybe you have experienced that strange duality that comes when you find yourself in a space where you wish to forgive but you do not wish to forget. After all, "forgive and forget" are now cliched bedfellows. That term is so cliched that it's virtually meaningless these days. And I wonder if it hasn't given forgiveness a bad name - giving the idea that forgiving should be equated with letting people walk all over you.
Maybe that ridiculous forgiving = forgetting idea sprang out of the fact that there is a certain weakness in forgiving. It certainly feels weak. But out of the other side of weakness, forgiveness bestows strength.
What comes into your mind, whether words or images, when you think of the field of forgiveness? I would love to know your thoughts if you feel like you would like to share.
Today, for me at least, forgiveness is all about quenching that irascible child that lives on the inside. Ill-formed and barely formed, she rails with the rage of the baby or the toddler that she was, demanding the needs that she needed to be met to survive.
Forgiving what happened on the outside is to set me free, to set her free, to become whatever it was she was meant to be but was denied.
Forgiveness does not feel like it's something that is contained inside stuffy walls. It's far too dangerous for that. Forgiveness needs large-sized fields that belong to Rumi. It is strength with power-punch, hidden inside apparent weakness. Forgiveness is spider-web tough. It is soul retrieval, bringing new sight to a door we could not see so clearly before. It is freedom and forward movement and very, very wise.