Finding Your Way to Understanding, Compassion & Forgiveness
When you are in the midst of a difficult period, it is nearly impossible to completely understand why something is happening and even more difficult to feel compassion for yourself and/or for anyone else that was involved. Some people believe that you’ll never understand why something happened and that you shouldn’t even try to. Letting go of the need to know why – they claim – is important if you want to live in peace, but if you don’t understand why something happened, you are likely to find yourself in the same situation time and time again.
Understanding and compassion will come to you when you find the courage to know the truth of the experience. Learning this kind of truth requires help from outside of yourself and from God, however you define Him/Her. Without this level of understanding, you cannot feel true compassion, and without true compassion, there is no pathway to forgiveness.
Coming to a complete understanding is a process. When you embark on a quest to understand why something happened to you, you must first take a look at what you believe happened. Some of the things you might think about and discuss with your therapist are: How old you were at the time? How do you describe this event in your mind? If you were to observe this experience today, would you see it the same way? If so – why?
Let’s suppose you find yourself forming relationships with people who struggle with addictions. The pattern goes something like this: after a few months, you become frustrated with this person’s inability to cope without their particular addictive substance or behavior, and you start to argue. Accusations are traded equally between the two of you with each of you justifying your suspicions or your stance on the subject to the other. The arguments escalate into physical or emotional battery, and eventually one of you reaches a breaking point. Maybe it takes several more months, or maybe it takes years before you find the courage to end the relationship only to move on to another one that ends up being virtually the same thing, but with a different partner.
Perhaps you find yourself always in the company of people who criticize you. You claim that you give your best effort in everything you try to do and you feel you are easy to get along with – never vocalizing any judgments on another person, so you can’t figure out why people are always attacking you or putting you down.
Whether your suspicions of an addict participating in their addiction are true or not, or whether you believe that you are easy to get along with and always try hard is irrelevant in the act of forgiveness. Justifying your thought process or behavior will not lead to complete understanding, and will very likely put you right back on the path to the same kind of relationship or situation.
Behaviors will repeat until we understand why we do what we do. Once we can recognize our behavior pattern(s), we can then decide whether or not these behaviors work for us or against us. We choose our partners. We choose who we want to associate with, including our family members. Family is not a licence to treat you poorly, or be emotionally or physically abusive. If you don’t like the company you are keeping, you must look inside your own self and learn the truth about why you keep choosing to be around the same kind of people over and over, and why you are willing to stay in a relationship that hurts you.
I am one of the people who believe that everyone comes into your life for a reason. The actual reason obviously varies from one person to another, but each reason, I believe, begins inside us. Our internal beliefs about ourselves and what we believe happened in our past experiences are what draws a certain type of person into our life. Come to terms with your past, forgive every person – including yourself – that you believed harmed you in any way, shape or form, and you will find that these types of people are no longer in your immediate circle.
I also believe that each of us has our own unique purpose along with a shared purpose with all of mankind. The shared purpose, I believe, is to find your way back to understanding and compassion regardless of what has taken place in your life. Without Divine guidance and intervention, this is not going to happen. True understanding and compassion are feelings – not intellectual exercises.
We are meant to learn from one another, and we are meant to share our experiences with others. If you are repeating the same mistakes over and over, or find yourself in situations that are hurtful, don’t you think it’s about time to learn why?
Enlist the help of a qualified therapist that incorporates psychological, physical and Spiritual ideals and practices into their therapy. We are three dimensional beings – mind, body & Spirit. Pay equal attention to all three and you will find your way back to health, happiness and Love.