I was lying in bed. Looking back on my life. All those I have touched, and those who have touched me.
I came across a memory. I disturbing memory.
A time that a woman told me ‘no’, and I seduced her anyway.
It was confusing for me. I knew she was really into playing out fantasies in which men forced themselves upon her.
So, at the time, I took her ‘no’ as roleplaying. I figured that if she ‘really’ meant NO she would push me off of her. And she wouldn’t be so obviously enjoying my affection.
The big test is: Afterward, did she regret our connection?
I got what I wanted.
She wanted to be seen and honored.
Did she get what she wanted?
So how does this make me feel about myself, reflecting on it now?
This is where the skill of forgiveness comes in handy. I can go two ways.
Path A) I shove this experience away. I don’t FEEL the shame. I don’t FEEL remorse. I become a staunch women’s rights fighter, unconsciously trying to destroy anything on earth that represents what I hate about myself.
Path B) I fully FEEL and process the experience. I see myself as innocent and naive, just someone who was looking for love (even with an inaccurate definition). I allow this part of myself to FULLY INHABIT my consciousness. I integrate the gifts of this shadow lover. I make the world a better place by sharing my story.
The skill of forgiveness is the MOST powerful tool for transmutation. With this, we have a profound ability to re-meaning any situation, ever.
So what IS forgiveness?
It’s simply a process of re-meaning. Forgiving our demons gives them a new meaning as repressed gifts. Forgiving the perpetrators in our lives releases US of the disempowering meanings we have been swimming in for years.
This does NOT mean to suppress our anger. Nor does it mean to forget the offense.
Forgiveness is a gift to YOURSELF. Let’s practice this together.