Forgiving doesn’t mean we don’t care. It’s a movement of our own heart to re-open to life. Listen to this guided meditation on forgiveness by Tara Brach.
In a few moments, we’ll begin the guided practice. If there’s any way you need to shift your posture to be comfortable yet alert, please do.
In the Buddhist tradition, the precursor to fully open loving heart is often the process of forgiving. And forgiving really means to relax, to release the barriers, the walls we’ve created between ourselves and others. And really between ourselves and ourselves.
One of the great wisdom teachings is really to not push anyone including yourself out of your own heart. It’s quite natural when we’ve been hurt and each of us have been hurt in different ways to assign blame or cause of that hurt. And to contract against that, that’s really natural. And the greater the hurt, the more of its trauma or abuse, the more solid and sustained the ___. And yet as we all into it, that if we keep that armoring, it really armor as against full aliveness.
In fact, to the degree that we’re, that these hearts are not forgiving to that degree, we really can’t feel ___ the joy.
So, the process of forgiving is not one of putting down all protection and saying okay come on, just do whatever you want, trample over me. It’s really, if you’ve been injured, or if we see that somebody else is injured, we can forgive the person who’s caused the harm and yet commit ourselves to do whatever is needed to protect another person, ourselves from further harm.
So, ___ forgiving doesn’t mean that we don’t take care. It’s really a movement of our own hear to re-open to life. That we forgive for the freedom of our hearts, to not live from history. For us to be open to the preciousness of the moment. It can be a very long process and often needs support, healers, therapists, and really, patience.
And the key, I think, for all of us is not, we can’t will it. Forgiveness has its own timing, but you can be willing. You can have a sincere aspiration to let go of the armoring and open your heart. We might be thinking with yourself, well, I don’t have anyone to forgive right now. Sometimes, we feel that way, and it can get more subtle that we’re really sensing where we’ve created separation.
We’re in some way, we’re holding some blame and not really opening the tenderness of our being to another.
So, we begin the practice this afternoon with the simplicity of feeling our hearts right now just as they are. And sensing our aspiration, and see if you can feel within and contact your deepest intention around forgiveness.
As you feel your sincerity to open, you can let go of any judgments about what actually happened in the meditation, and just be gentle and curious about the process.
In one of the class, a three part versions of forgiving. We begin by asking for forgiveness. So, the invitation here is to scan your life and sense where you might have caused harm to another person. ___ aware, not intentionally, through your words, your actions, your thoughts. Maybe, a situation that’s recurring. Now, in each of us, in the moments of not being mindful, in the moments of being caught in our own overpowering sense of need, hurt, fear have acted in a way that caused harm.
In sensing whether this is true for you, just choosing one person or the situation calls you, calls your attention. And allow the ascertain situation where you can sense where harmless cause to come very close into your attention so you can sense it. Sense how the person might have been hurt, or pushed away, or misunderstood, rejected.
Allowing yourself to be touched by that person’s experience. Once you feel that natural response of care, you might mentally whisper the person’s name. And of course, ____ are I see and feel how I’ve caused you harm, and I ask your forgiveness. Please forgive me.
When the power comes from the purity of your sincerity that again, whispering that person’s name, see and feel that pain that have caused you. And ask your forgiveness, please forgive me.
You might be aware whether your heart feels available to receive forgiveness. To sense the receptivity of your own heart. Can you imagine feeling forgiven? Not to judge if you can, but just include an awareness of what’s happening.
We continue the practice by bringing our intention to forgive to our own being. And see you might scan and sense that you’re someway pushing yourself to your own heart. And that maybe for what you just reflected on, for some sense of hurting another, or there maybe something else that’s calling your attention.
And bringing close in whatever you’re sensing on that experience of pushing your own being away, being at ___ yourself, judging, not forgiving. And letting yourself for moment sense the real experience of the pain, the contraction of it.
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Sean Fargo is the Founder of Mindfulness Exercises, a former Buddhist monk of 2 years, a trainer for the mindfulness program born at Google, an Integral Coach from New Ventures West, and an international mindfulness teacher trainer. He can be reached at [email protected]
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