A couple of days ago, I was having a conversation about forgiveness as a way to lighten your load. Sometimes the burdens others have laid upon you place a very heavy load on your shoulders. Forgiveness removes the burdens and liberates your soul.
In the conversation about forgiveness, I explained that we carry the burdens that others have given us. We hold grudges, or we are angry or frustrated with the other people, or we feel badly about ourselves based upon what had been said or done in the past.
I explained that ultimately, proceeding forward this way weighs us down. That is what I realized in my recovery. Whoever I was not forgiving was in charge of my life and my recovery because they were in charge of elevating my negative emotions. At that point, unconditional forgiveness became necessary and easy. Forgiveness lightened my load and set me free.
And then a story came to me that I had heard some time ago:
Two monks are on their way back to the monastery, an older monk and a younger monk. They come upon a river and a woman is standing at the edge of the river.
The older monk asks the woman is she needs safe passage across the river and she says yes. Without another thought, he scoops her up in his arms and walks across the river with the younger monk by his side.
On the other side, he puts her down, she says “thank you,” he say, “you are welcome,” and the monks continue their remaining walk to the monastery. As they are walking, the younger monk begins his protestations:
“I cannot believe you touched a woman. And not just any woman, but a peasant woman with torn clothes and no undergarments. You could see her breast hanging out of her top, and when you lifted her to carry her, all of her private parts were showing.” And he continued on and on and on with his complaining.
As the two reached the gate to the monastery, the older monk stopped, turned to the younger monk, and finally spoke: “A woman needed passage across the river. I picked her up, carried her across, and put her down on the other side. You are the only still carrying her these last three miles.”
Whoever hurt you with whatever they said or did, remove the burdens of the past from your shoulders and put them down. They belong to the wrongdoer and are not your burdens to carry. You have carried these burdens way too long. Put the burdens down, offer forgiveness, lighten your load, and liberate your soul.
You can do this.
You are worth it!!!
All my best,