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Sunday, February 06, 2011

"Without forgiveness life is governed by...an endless cycle of resentment and retaliation." Roberto Assagioli

Oh My Goodness...have more heart rending words ever been spoken? Now as I write this, I understand that anyone reading it will immediately think that I am a grudge-holding non-forgiver of those who "wrong" me or hurt me, who has just seen the light when she read this quote.

Interestingly, I am not. I forgive rather easily, and usually am the person who looks for the reason that someone has done something bad to me or to someone else. But this quote, this quote goes beyond just "you did something bad to me and I'll hold a grudge forever." Because this quote speaks to our very souls. I think that forgiveness is easy to grant to those in my world. I will say that if I am "wronged" by someone, I forgive easily, but I don't tend to forget, and I never fail to learn from the experience. Chances are that person will not ever be in a position again to hurt me. But that is not about revenge, or retaliation, it is about self-protection, and I am quite good at that, without any apologies, by the way..

But this quote speaks to me, and perhaps should speak to everyone, about how we treat ourselves. While it is oh so easy to forgive others for what they might do that affects me, I find it oh so difficult to forgive myself for not meeting my own internal standards. I find myself becoming more and more impatient with me. I don't beat myself up, but I find myself rolling my eyes at what I view as my own self-rationalization of my failures on my journey to health. And this quote re-affirms something that I guess I know and have always known: it is counterproductive to behave in such a manner. Perhaps I could just be as understanding with myself as I am with others, learn from the experience, adjust what I can and should, and continue to move forward. Because let's face it, what are the alternatives? To stop trying? To scream at myself to stop screwing up? Don't see how that does much good, as the quote says, then I would just be doomed to that endless cycle of resntment and retaliation, and then I may as well just throw up my hands and quit.

I know folks who live in that endless cycle of resentment and retaliation, they are not happy, they have no joy, they are never satisfied; they never see the bright side, instead are cynical and derogatory, jaded and just plain mean. I don't want to be that person, especially with myself as the target of those negative feelings!

So here is a reminder to me to be kind to myself..and a reminder to everyone to do the same..

Have a Sparky day!!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    So here I am... and I'm starting with an apology... I'm so sorry it's been SO VERY LONG since I've paid attention to your thoughts and words. I kept paging back and back (good for you for being so prolific on your own behalf!), and felt more and more sad... I realized that the balm for my own sense of isolation was just a click away... though I also must have missed a notification because I didn't get any reminders.

    ...And what a place to start. Interestingly enough, forgiveness has been strongly and consistently on my heart and mind for a year now... especially the nuances... the dynamic of forgiveness is seeming to me to be like and onion, and the inner layers are very different than the surface. I'm very aware of how slow-healing the bruises on my heart are at this stage in my life. What I am learning is that I need to focus on forgiveness less when I meet the world (and myself) with compassion as I go along. And I'm finding compassion more accessible in my heart than is forgiveness. For me, the emotional mechanics of forgiveness are all caught up in 'justice' and 'validation' and 'trust'... I think you of all people will understand that, Tina.

    I, too, 'forgive' easily ("You will know that forgiveness has begun when you recall those who hurt you and feel the power to wish them well." LEWIS B. SMEDES... I do this easily), but I'm only now questioning if that really goes as far or as deep in my heart and psyche as I'm called, because I'm becoming very aware of just how compromised my own ability to trust has become, and how small my world could be if I'm not careful.

    So I battle on...

    "Forgiveness does not change the past, but it does enlarge the future.' PAUL BOESE

    I love you, Tina!
    {{{{{{{{{{ HUGS }}}}}}}}}}

    3467 days ago
  • no profile photo CD6473944
    Great thoughts!
    3587 days ago
    Yes, some people do live there. Enjoyed the reminder.
    3588 days ago
  • no profile photo CD487555
    Awesome! I was going to blog about this as well. I was just saying to my husband last night as we were going to bed that I need to find room to forgive myself for all the damage I have done to my body in the past in order to forge ahead into the future of my health.

    Thanks for the reminder!
    3588 days ago
    Well shared, T!
    3588 days ago
    What a wonderful blog! Thank you for sharing this Tina. I agree that we tend to be harder on ourselves than others. Have a wonderful Sunday!
    3588 days ago
    Great blog, it struck me the same way when I first read it too. Thank you for putting my thoughts into words.

    3588 days ago
    Wonderful blog - something to think about, for sure.

    3588 days ago
  • YAZZY010
    Great quote and so true! I find it easy to forgive others, because I dont like holding onto resentment and negative thinking...and yet it is precisely why I am on Sparkpeople because I treat myself worst of all!
    Thanks for this post!
    3588 days ago
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