I had a big lesson in forgiveness this month. From my 3 year old no less! It’s easy for her. She can be upset with someone for a minute- but if she wants something from that person a bit later, she is all adorable smiles and forgivable kisses. Not so easy for us big kids.
Over my 11+ years of running a yoga business, there is a person I need to deal with at regular intervals who makes a request into a confrontation. This persons’ approach to issues isn’t “would you/ your students mind not….”… It’s “if you don’t do this….. Then I’ll do…. to you“.
After not having any issues with this member of the community for a long time, in fact being a regular customer to their business, something came up. And instead of a gentle reminder of our previous discussions on the matter, I was confronted with an immediate threat– to my business, to my classes, to my landlord.
My initial reaction was , “well, I will handle this in a yogic manner. I won’t cause any arguments. I’ll apologise and do what this person has asked (because inconvenience was caused). And I probably don’t need to patronise this person’s business in the future.” Well, I thought that was the yogic way.
As I relayed the situation to my husband the other night, my 3 year old said, “No mummy. Your have to make everyone happy again!”.
The Yogic texts assert that all needs to be forgiven in order to achieve spiritual enlightenment. Not causing arguments is stage one; apologising from the heart is stage two… the final stage (of which I needed reminding) is not only to let go and forgive, but also to forget. It’s not to be confused with suppression of resentment. It’s hard to do. My daughter was right, “I just wont’ go into their shop again” is not the yogic way of handling things at all.
My daughter had slightly ulterior motives for me moving on from the confrontations (she is also a good customer), however, she did make me stop and think about the difference between unconditional forgiveness (the real letting go) and passive aggression (the letting go for now!)