Friday, October 20th 2017

Your daily self-forgiveness meditation for 2011

This year provides a new start to us all, and the perfect time to ‘turn the wheel of self-forgiveness’

BY DANIEL WOO — On New Year’s Eve 2010 I spent unexpected hours with a visiting friend who I dropped off at SeaTac Airport.

During our time together, we talked about patterns of self-criticism and self-judgment that negate forgiveness and growth.  Both of us came from perfectionist families.  This can create an internal struggle to avoid adopting as truth impossible standards.

The world is imperfect, yet perfectly imperfect, if we only accepted such.  My friend is struggling with this, as I do at times.

Old patterns of self-criticism are self-defeating.

I explained that when I adopted daily prayers and/or meditations specifically about forgiveness, these old patterns dissolve.  It is a process that has its own time-line and when I practice, my days and nights are lighter.

I told my friend that in my own experience, self-forgiveness and forgiveness of others are like a wheel any movement, however slight, toward forgiveness of others turns the wheel toward forgiveness of self, and any movement, however slight, toward forgiveness of self turns the wheel toward forgiveness of others.

A self-surrender occurs during this process sometimes one doesn’t recognize this as it happens; sometimes one realizes it is happening.

Adopting, adapting or creating daily practices that resonate

For example, the Prayer of St. Francis is a Christian prayer that includes at its heart – forgiveness.

My friend knows that I practice daily Buddhist metta (loving-kindness) and tonglen (sending/receiving) meditations and that I also have a daily contemplative practice.

The important effort is having a daily practice.  I’ve read that it takes at least 10,000 hours of practice supposedly to be good at anything.

My advice?  Instead of expecting instant results, just practice.

On the way back from the airport after dropping him off, I had to wait 20 minutes for a traffic blockage caused by fire engines responding to a fire.  I pulled off the side of the road as I realized that I had enough time to send my friend a starting suggestion for a self-forgiveness meditation.

I quickly composed something very short and texted it to him so that before his flight left, he would have something to consider using or adapting.  My friend is also a professional songwriter.  I suggested that he can also use his lyric writing skills to create a song of forgiveness that he can chant or sing every day.

Here is what I composed on the side of the road as a suggestion for a daily meditation.  My friend texted me that he received this, with thanks.

Daily meditation for this year

I am a human being who has made mistakes.
I am not perfect.
I forgive myself today.

Today I will do my best imperfectly.
I am forgiven and will love myself today.
I am a good worthy human being.

The sun shines each day no matter what happened yesterday.
I forgive myself for all my yesterdays.
I have an inner light that shines on me today.

Daniel D. Woo woke up to an understanding that suffering is not ended until view, intention and action are changed.  Dan practices law in Seattle, Washington.  You can reach him via Facebook or Linkedin.

Read Daniel’s previous articles for Soul’s Code: A Seattle lawyer’s medieval meditation, and The best advice, ever, for those who have been abused.

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One Comment on “Your daily self-forgiveness meditation for 2011”

  1. Love it! Forgiveness is "letting go" and this article expresses it nicely!

    Best thoughts!

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