Forgive and plan instead

I’ve heard about this forgive and forget idea.  I don’t think it’s possible.  I can forgive, in that I choose not to let myself continue to hold ill will in my heart.  But to forget, how can one do that?  I think this maybe a Christian concept that may not always be wise.  When you feel used and abused do you wish to let go of your anger so well that you allow it to happen over?  Is that what happens to abused wives?  They forgive in the Biblical fashion 77 times and end up dead!

I’m all about forgiveness, I’m all about letting go, I’m all about sitting in the moment and letting the past drift away, but I think I must be misunderstanding “forget”.  I can’t believe that the Bible is telling us to put ourselves back in a position of hurt again and again and again.  It just doesn’t add up.  Any Biblical scholars out there that can tell me what part of this is a mistranslation.

I think I prefer that Arabian/Islamic concept of “Trust in God, but teather your camel.”  This speaks to me more.   If we don’t do what we can do to protect, and better ourselves, what right have we to ask of God anything?   Don’t you have to do your part?   I guess that’s where UUs and other liberals depart from those who believe in predetermination.  We think you have to work for your enlightenment.

The good news about all my late trauma is that I am really able to stay in the moment.  When I really feel bummed I remember that I am not living under the stars, that I have people who love me and are fairly safe to be with, and the sky is the limit on finding more folks like that.

I don’t know about forgetting on purpose either.  I don’t think I can do it.  I can let stuff go,  I can lay baggage down, I can choose to put a positive spin on something, but how does one forget when trust is broken.  I can forget something that happens that is trivial, but if forgiveness is required, true forgiveness, then how is it possible to forget.

I read that they found a drug that had the side effect of wiping out huge chunks of memory.  They would never use it, but they’d written up an article about it and scores of folks wanted to sign up to forget.  They were willing to give up all their happy memories too in order to eradicate their unhappy traumatic ones.  It’s a heck of a trade.  Apparently forgetting is not so possible.

I saw an article the other day about minimizing feelings and I wonder if we aren’t making a mistake to wallow in our hurts from the past, they were ready to get angry about people advising them to let it go and to move on… I think that sitting in negativity with a righteous indignation that will not let you move on and live your life in joy is stupid.  I probably should say ill advised or something gentler but I think living in pain without possibility of parole is pointless and a waste of our precious time here in life!

I think living through this economy and this odd lifestyle (place to place) has made me suspicious of recovery movements that do not place the emphasis on the now.  Now is all there ever was after all, everything else is just a story you tell yourself, about stuff that no longer exists.  Now is where joy is.  Who the heck would want to be any place else.  Now is a place where you can be wary and forgiveness even doesn’t matter, because the story of what you are forgiving does not add anything to the now that we are in, unless the problem is persisting.

It seems to me that forgiving and creating a strategy to move on is wiser than forgiving and forgetting.  Plan out how to handle the situation in the future and then let that live on as a story of a plan you have and get back to the now where the joy is.

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One Response to “Forgive and plan instead”

  1. Galen Pearl Says:

    Love the idea of forgiving and creating a strategy. Forgiveness frees the forgiver, but doesn’t mean the forgive should forget history. Well said!

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