Greetings Again! Over the past few weeks I have been personally confronted with many changes in my life.... Moving... Grieving the loss of a childhood friend... Making new... exciting changes and decisions about the future. While going through all of these ups and downs in emotions... one promise stands strong... I do know that God and the Spirit's leading are an ever constant pressence in the storms of life... The following article is about living in the present and forgiving the past. Always trust your instinct and know that God and the Spirit are guiding you on your spiritual journey... Sincere Peace!
Live in the Present, Forgive Your Past
P. B. Chase
"I opened my favorite Dove dark chocolate candy, unwrapped the red foil with anticipation to thoroughly enjoy the creamy dark chocolate richness. When I had finished, I started to crumple up the wrapper to throw away,but I always have to open to read the messages that are printed inside. It usually says something like, "Sing with the elevator music" or "Believe the best in others", but this one said, "Live in the present, forgive your past." It gave me pause; I crumpled up the wrapper and again set it aside to throw away and then reached to read it once again. As I did, something in these words seemed to penetrate, to reach through to me in a deeper way.
I know it's important to live in the present this concept is not new to me. I know to live in the present requires not living in the past. I have recently been seeing how powerful forgiveness is, and the ability of it to release us. But these words, "forgive your past" seeped deeper, past my mind, to awake my consciousness more than merely forgetting the past or forgiving others. It struck me as something that, I don't believe, we often allow ourselves to do and it is why we so often live in the strangle hold of the past. We may be aware of the need and have the desire to move on from our past and even realize it holds us back in many ways, but I don't think we necessarily recognize the need or the "right" to forgive our past. This changes everything; it gives us complete and total control of our present. We are no longer indebted to the past and we therefore are no longer limited by it. This means moving forward without regret, when we forgive, it is washed clean from our soul and the stain of the past is gone. This does not mean we are not accountable for our actions it means we accept responsibility and ask forgiveness when necessary and forgive our failure and move forward.
This is more than just forgiving ourselves for something we may hold on to or forgiving someone else, it is allowing forgiveness for all that is in the past and reconciling our past with whom we are and where we are now. It is only when we can truly forgive, only then can we can truly move forward. We clear "any" thoughts, feelings, ideas, mistakes, failures and successes of the past that feed our unconscious mind. Yes, successes too can hold us to the past in an unhealthy way. What we accomplished yesterday is now in the past and needs to be released to the past. Living on yesterday's success is a sure way to lose touch with today. Releasing and forgiving the past allows one to start anew each day. We can live each moment with all of our focus and energy on the here and now. Our past has a collective quality that is more than just our own life experiences, but is very much the life experience of our parents and grandparents and generations before us. We carry with us experiences that we know only through stories of man's history, but we nonetheless carry the emotions, fears and failures, hopes and dreams of these times with us. They become our collective past that affects us all and we carry views of the world that have nothing to do with personal experiences, but are the learned cumulative experiences of mankind.
What does this mean to us in our everyday lives? It means we react and respond to our present from a point of view that is not necessarily valid, but is our collective human experience projected onto us without our even recognizing it. What this means to us most simply is that we do not have honest experiences now, we do not really live in the present and respond to the present because our minds are foreshadowed by the past to see our present in an untrue light. We need to forgive our past, learn from the past, recognize the mistakes of our history, but separate our minds from it. We need not be blindly influenced in our perception and experiences of the present by our minds perceived past.
If we can learn to experience this present day, this present moment with all of our senses, our spirit, our soul. If we can learn to harness and use our mind as a tool and not let the mind enslave us to the past we will have a much richer, more spiritual and satisfying life. Being in touch with the present moment with all that you are makes alive all that you are meant to be. I don't thing we can live up to our potential or find our true purpose in life until we do.
When we live in the present and from a conscious mind and not in the past we find we are no longer in search of something to believe or in search of how to fulfill our beliefs, but we see that already are complete. There is nothing to improve upon; there is nothing we need do, but to experience our life in the fullness of God with all that he created us to be.
Live in the present, forgive your past. Reading these words and meditating upon them seems to have a healing effect. I feel the tentacles of the past slip away. I feel the sadness of my heart's burden lessen and ease. I feel the tension in my body soften and the almost imperceptible awareness of fear that holds its grip upon the human mind slack a little and give rise to faith and courage. Fear is the product of our minds reaction to the experiences of the past. When we live in the present moment we see have nothing to fear as we are not holding to the past with dread or regret, we live in the present and we have strength for the moment.
Live in the present, forgive your past. When we do this we naturally forgive others and we forgive all of our history, we forgive the failures and we recognize the potential of all of God's creation. We will nolonger feel the need to judge or defend, as we forgive, as we are forgiven. Does this mean we put our trust in all men? No, but it does mean we trust God and as we forgive we release those who would harm us into His hands. When we forgive another person we release them from our judgment and give them over to God. God will deal with the heart of each man; it is not ours to do.
Live in the present, forgive your past. Forgive yourself, forgive your family history and forgive all the history of man that holds your soul captive. Find yourself in God and let Him live in you.
"Live in the present, forgive your past", written on the wrapper of a Dove chocolate...you never know where God will meet you."
"The Power of Now", By Eckhart Tolle
"The Shack", By William P. Young