Choosing Love

I have the privilege to witness amazing transformations in people I work with every day and sometimes, as it happened today, I am reminded of how simple, yet magical, the catalysts for these transformations can be. Today I had coffee with one of my coaching clients, who came along with her three and a half year old daughter. I was in awe at the amazing connection between the two of them as I saw my client’s whole expression transform when she spoke to or merely looked at the little one. As my client is going through a big change in her life, her daughter unwittingly provides perhaps the most valuable support her mother could ever wish for. What does she do exactly? She herself summed it up beautifully when, at one point, her mother asked: “What are you feeling?” “I feel my heart filled with love” the little one replied “For whom?” the mother asked “For you, mommy”.  “I love you too, honey. I love you so much” the mother concluded, tears in her eyes. I had tears in my eyes too and I too felt my heart filled with love. This is a mother who wholeheartedly gives love to her child, and joyously receives love back. But what happens when this exchange is not that healthy? What happens when love isn’t shared or returned? What happens when people – parents, lovers, friends – make terrible mistakes against those whom they love? Or when they simply don’t know how to show love, because nobody has ever taught them? Later in the day I had a talk with someone very close to me about the sadness and pain of losing love, being denied love, being rejected, hurt, humiliated by someone you love. We talked about what options the “victim” has in these situations. What options does a rejected child have when her parents are unable to give her the emotional nourishment she needs? What options does another have when he is abused? What kind of...

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The Magic of Forgiveness

Sounds funny, doesn’t it? Funny word! I heard about Ho’oponopono from a good friend of mine recently and, apart from the weird sound of it and a short explanation on my friend’s part about it being an ancient healing practice, I forgot all about it. Then, as it usually does lately, synchronicity intervened. Today I met a new coaching client, a very nice young woman who had written to me asking for my support with some personal issues that she is currently going through. We talked about many things and, among others, we talked about forgiveness and how difficult it is to give to others, as well as to yourself. For some reason the discussion with her left me in a very meditative state, that awkward feeling I get right when I’m about to discover something new or get a fresh insight. I never know where the insight is going to come, but it always comes from the most surprising sources. I got home and took a quick look on Facebook and one post stood out: “Ho’oponopono meditation for the healing of Earth’s waters”. To join this world-wide group meditation you only needed to do one thing – repeat the mantra: “I am sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you. I love you.”  For some strange reason I felt a compulsion to look it up and find out more. What I learnt is that Ho’oponopono is an ancient Hawaiian practice of reconciliation and forgiveness. Islanders in the South Pacific believed that all people and things were interconnected and whenever an imbalance appeared – a disease, a conflict – forgiveness was needed to restore order and balance. Anger and secrecy (repressed emotions) were believed to be major causes of illness – and modern research in the impact of negative emotions on health supports the ancient’s beliefs. Sadly few “modern” people acknowledge and are open to these truths which were common knowledge hundreds or even thousands of years ago. Ho’oponopono was initially a group ceremony, performed by...

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Life Equations: Grattitude x Acceptance = Forgiveness

I started off on my series of Life Equations blog posts a week ago, when I wrote about Disappointment as being the sum of Control and Expectations. This week I’m inviting you to think about forgiveness. This is, as you may well have guessed already, not a random choice of subject. I decided to write about forgiveness for two reasons: one is the time of year. Easter is coming, the very symbol of forgiveness in it’s highest, most profound state. This is a time when we should all stop and look around, remembering that we are all connected, that any mistakes that we make against each other are also mistakes against ourselves, that any resentments, bad feelings, hate, judgement that we place upon others we also place upon ourselves. Perhaps there is no better time for inner cleaning than this time. Nature is coming back to life and we have a wonderful opportunity to rid our inner closet of any hidden skeletons. The second reason is that the theme of “forgiveness” seems to have shown up in my life quite a lot lately. I had amazing opportunities to discuss this subject with people who have forgiven, have been forgiven or have found themselves unable to forgive themselves or those who wronged them. As I always do, I tried to learn something useful from all these people. I also had an opportunity to think where I stand on the issue. It is precisely these thoughts that I’ve decided to share with you today. I don’t think it is by accident that forgiveness comes up as a theme is most spiritual traditions. It is perhaps one of the hardest things to do, and perhaps also one of the most liberating in a person’s life. I have also come to believe that the primary reason we are having such a hard time forgiving others is because we are, in fact, having a hard time forgiving ourselves. I know an astounding number of people who tend to be...

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