Thanks to Jo for some great food for thought! (check out her comments posted with "Angry White Woman") Great points. I got stuck on Catherine Ponders Step 2 also. I wonder if it should be "ask for forgiveness from others"? Forgive and forget. That is so tricky. I think I can handle the forgiveness part because I want to be forgiven, tit for tat. One of my friends is always saying "I am only responsible for making sure my side of the street is clean."
But the forgetting is what is hard. I think it is more like forgive today and forget about it, then when you remember it again, forget it again, and again and again, ad infinitum. Forgetting is a constant act. Isn't that a NewYorkers' favorite phrase "fagetaboutit"?
Because we have been given the ability to remember it is very hard to truly forget. I am hopeful that the more I forgive others the less time I will feel the need to rehash old crap. And if it comes to mind, I hope that my emotional responses to it lessens each and every time I remember. Or in other words, I become less in effect to it and more at cause over my thoughts and responses.
I like to blame it all on my ego. Just when I am having a great day. My ego can't stand my great mood and it will flash a memory infront of me and I can be plunged into despair. Complete nose dive. Ego doesn't like it when our spirit is in the drivers seat. It would like to stuff our spirit in the trunk and lose the key. It can't help it, it's fighting for its very existance. Why would we need an ego if we were operating on a spirit level 24/7/365? Ego must have nightmares of ending up as something akin to the Maytag Repair man of our human existance-irrelivant and unused. One author describes the ego in such a great way; "The human face of that ego is pride; is arrogant self-importance; is narcissistic self-infatuation; is the need to see oneself as being separate at all times, in all places, through all circumstances—and that ego is the unrelenting enemy of all that is truly wholesome in the human experience."
What better weapon does the ego have to help it's survival than making us remember every minute detail of our miserable existance? Forget it! And when we remember again, ego throws it up in our face "see, you just can't let it go!" the what follows? Shame, guilt, self-loathing "why can't I be more forgiving? Why can't I forget? I am such a terrible person, I don't deserve to be forgiven if I can't forgive myself". Ego shoots and ego scores!
Separation, that is a whole other topic to delve into. I'm still working on writing up my 70 affirmations of forgiveness of my father to really look into it.