Forgiving, Forgetting and Shedding Your Past
Moving on means leaving your past in the past.
That may sound simple and easy, but it is usually the absolute opposite. Truly moving on is the hardest version of tough love that there is, especially tough love for yourself.
You are good at tough love, right?
Moving on is Moving in…
We all try to ‘keep it together’ as long as we can. And, at some point, we burn ourselves out. Then we either decompress in a conscious way, or we turn into a proverbial hot mess. I am pretty sure if you are reading this, you have had a bit of both.
I also spoke about a practical approach to decompressing experiences like trauma, emotional pain, physical pain, and profound distress. This approach included an Applied Meditation Breathing practice, to help you explore experiences like Deep Relaxation, Heartfelt Acceptance, and the ‘Massive Action’ version of Letting Go.
I would love to hear how that practice has helped you, or if you need more examples.
I am writing a series of Articles on a subject very dear to my heart called Coming Home to Your True Self. It was a big part of my life a few years ago and I have always wanted to share these Old-School Native Teachings with a wider audience.
I know I need them right now. A lot of us do…
In this article, I am going to dig into the next phase of Coming Home to Yourself.
The Dineh (Navajo) word for forgiveness (if I have it right) means, ‘Putting something down and walking away from it (someone/something), so far and for so long, that you could never find your way back to it ever again’. I love that language, although I am only a beginner.
Letting something go is not the same as forgetting about it. Letting go is an instinct to keep growing, learning, and experiencing new things. Forgetting is what makes addiction so popular.
Smile, get up and finally stop carrying whatever has kept you in an old story. Let it become a part of a past that has no more lessons – only expensive reruns. Very expensive reruns. They cost years.
Noticing that you are carrying your past is often associated with more rapid aging.
OK, so I made that up…
It takes a lot of energy to live in the world. There is always the affirmation of ‘presence’, and more please, but that just brings on more of the world. And this world is damn noisy out there on just about every level.
Presence is the goal and presence is the canoe that will get you where you need to go. But, Presence needs to know where to start, or else the noisy world will keep distracting you from really beginning Your Journey Home.
Your past has fangs. I know, I just dropped that out of nowhere.
The first thing that is going to define your experience of presence and the way you approach your future is your past. Your future is coming – nothing you can do about that.
Makes living fun, as far as I am concerned.
But your future won’t feel very fun when your past sill has fangs in your ass, or your heart – or even your Soul.
Focus on the fangs!
There is a difference between fighting the good fight and solving the actual conflict. I spent over a decade of my life in a pitched battle with my traumas and addictions. It was a good and worthy battle, but ‘fighting the good fight’ creates an identity of struggle and conflict – or always avoiding stress and conflict.
This is like a plague in the modern world.
If you are still in a battle with your past, or an addictive habit that has defined how you exist in the world – the only way to change is a deep inner strength. A true application of Consciousness and Character.
“Violence is usually due to a lack of conflict.” Martin Prechtel
A lot of people who have experienced trauma and addiction, feel that the aggressive and dangerous part of themselves is barely controllable. When out of control people and behavior have damaged your life, you will naturally choose more control. But, trying to control what is out of control, by nature is going to feel like Chaos. And chaos is only ever about chaos.
Imagine trying to herd a bunch of cats…
That is the fangs. The past, your inability find peace and about a thousand other things too.
Here is the cheddar (sorry food allergy Peeps):
Don’t identify with the fangs. Don’t identify with the shame or that long family story about booze and hitting bottom. Don’t identify with how hard you think you are fighting just to get through your day. That is the deepest set of teeth I have ever met in my life.
This is the old story. Once the fangs are in, the only thing you can do is fight for your life. But the violence of trauma has you afraid that you will probably destroy the world if you open a can of whoop-ass.
Better grit your teeth and dig in for the long haul. I did
The simplicity of what I say next may piss you off.
All dark journeys into the Shadowlands eventually end in a return to the light.
It is time to shed your past!
Or, not wanting to rock the canoe, “Do you feel ready to shed your past?”
It is time to shed your old beliefs about who is writing the story of your life.
Or, I could soothe you about how overwhelming it is to try to get anywhere in life when you are covered in fangs. I probably would…
But today I just want you to invite your wake-up call. I had a HUGE wake-up call recently and have to say – stop waiting for a bigger wake-up call.
Shed your past. I will be all over this whole process for the next few weeks.
Keep going until you cannot find your way back to that place. Forgive whatever got you here. Focus on having enough energy and focus on the world right here and now.
Let’s work out some kinks together. Let’s start shedding the snake that has swallowed you.