November 17, 2017
For our recent Spiritual Friday, we spoke about the gift of forgiveness – for others and for ourselves.
"You surrender to a lot of things which are not worthy of you. I wish you would surrender to your radiance, your integrity, your beautiful human grace." - Yogi Bhajan
We spoke about forgiveness as not condoning a behavior (ours or another's) but rather choosing to no longer be a victim to the pain. When it comes to self-forgiveness, we must remember that punishing ourselves for past mistakes or hurts does not heal us, nor does it change us; loving ourselves does.
The patients shared then shared a few prayers:
"O Lord, remember not only the men and women of good will, but also those of ill will. But do not remember all the suffering they have inflicted on us; remember the fruits we have borne thanks to this suffering - our comradeship, our loyalty, our humility, our courage, our generosity, the greatness of heart which has grown out of all of this; and when they come to the judgement, let all the fruits we have borne be their forgiveness." - Unknown, Ravensbruck Concentration Camp
This profoundly beautiful prayer needs to be shared over and over again. Forgiveness is for us, so that we may be instruments of such peace.
If I have harmed anyone in any way, either
knowingly or unknowingly through my own confusions,
I ask their forgiveness.
If anyone has harmed me in any way, either
knowingly or unknowingly through their own confusions,
I forgive them.
And if there is a situation that I am not yet
ready to forgive,
I forgive myself for that.
For all the ways, I harm myself, negate, doubt,
belittle myself, judge or be unkind to
myself through my own confusions,
I forgive myself.
Reverend Laurie Durgan