With the end of 2019 upon us and the fresh start of a new decade before us, let’s talk about forgiveness.
We’ve all had situations in our life where we’ve been shocked, betrayed, traumatized, manipulated, or abused in one way or another. We can all agree that the emotional gravity of these situations creates very strong impressions in our biology. In fact, the stronger the emotional reaction to a person, problem, or experience, the more altered internally we become.
When these types of upsets occur, our internal alarm systems switch on, and in doing so, because the event is so threatening or painful, the brain freezes the frame and takes a snapshot of the external event. We could say then that the brain has captured a moment in time—a moment which actually no longer exists—and in the process, the event becomes neurologically embossed in the brain. Another way of saying this is that the event has left a physical impression in our biology. We call this a long-term memory.
The side effect of this shock to the system is that, because of the strength of the emotion, the stress chemicals that cause us to live in survival are triggered. Because those chemicals (which are the end products of emotions) are so unpleasant, we do whatever we can to avoid them. The ironic part is that, in trying to avoid them, we keep reliving and revisiting the memory of the event over and over again, and now we’re stuck in a loop of thinking and feeling the very emotions that we don’t want to feel.
This process is how the conditioning process begins—by continuously experiencing a thought and a feeling, an image and an emotion, and a stimulus and a response. In this repetitive process, not only is the memory logged in the brain, but additionally, the emotion or feeling is being conditioned into the body. It’s also how the body becomes beholden to chemical instructions, and as a result, the body becomes subconsciously conditioned to be the mind of that emotion. Now the trauma lives in the body as well as the brain.
Because the body is so objective, it doesn’t know the difference between the actual experience that originally created the emotion and the brain's memory that is creating that emotion. If thoughts are the language of the brain and feelings are the language of the body, and how we think and how we feel make up our state of being, then it makes sense that this person’s entire state of being is becoming hardwired and emotionally conditioned to the past.
By recalling the same memory over and over again, we are firing and wiring the same circuits into neural networks (causing them to fire more automatically the next time), which means it’s easier to remember that painful past. Additionally, the same feelings will be easier to create because the body has been manufacturing the same chemicals and hormones every day. As a result of the emotions of fear, anger, hostility, frustration, pain, suffering, and so on, because they are derived from the stress hormones and emergency systems of survival, the brain tells the body to prepare for the event in case it happens again. Now guess what happens? Guess what the sum total of this entropic process is?
Our entire perception of the world becomes based on that memory. This is what keeps the body connected to the past. In other words, we will see the world equal to the story we tell ourselves about the past.
Now, if where you place your attention is where you place your energy, by holding on to some problem and keeping your attention on the past event or person who you feel is responsible for your pain, you are allowing that person or event to hold you emotionally hostage. That means you’re giving away your energy, your power to create, and your very life force to someone or something outside of you. That’s vital energy that can be used to create a new future, a new destiny, optimal health, or even a mystical experience. It begs the question: How much of your creative energy could you be using to change your life or your body?
The good news is we now know that, while you’re sitting in meditation, if, instead of indulging in those uncomfortable feelings or emotions, you bring your body back to the safety of the present moment, then you will lower the volume to those emotions and thoughts. In doing so, you tell the body it’s no longer the emotional mind. You, your conscious will, is now the mind. Every time you perform this defiant act of returning the body to the present moment, a liberation of energy occurs. This is the start of the reconditioning process. Each time you overcome yourself as such, it’s a victory—and every victory adds up.
In a sense, by disengaging from the thoughts and emotions of the past and returning to the present moment, you begin breaking the energetic bond to that person, problem, or painful experience. When you do this enough times, you’re no longer ruled by the negative emotions because you’ve moved your attention off of them. By no longer feeling those emotions, you will naturally stop thinking about them. That’s forgiveness.
We could say then that forgiveness is moving to a greater level of consciousness where we are no longer being defined by the problems of our past. Now, from the vantage point of the mountain you willed and summoned your body to summit, you can look back at the landscapes and mindscapes you traversed, and in doing so, see the value of the lesson learned from a new level of mind. It’s fair to say then that true forgiveness is breaking the emotional charge and energetic bond to our painful past, whatever that might be. What you’re left with instead is a memory, and a memory without the emotional charge is called wisdom—and that’s the name of the game in three-dimensional reality. Now you’re ready to create a new future.
Here’s to a Happy New Year, forgiving the past, and using all that liberated vital energy to create a new future for yourself, your family, humanity, and Mother Earth.
‘Tis the season to give and forgive.