Making peace with the past
Do we want to make peace with the past, or do we want Peace, full stop?
Our culture teaches us that our past experience can stay with us; affecting us in our day to day, as ‘emotional baggage’ or in patterns of behaviour that have become our habits. Our culture also teaches us that, in order to be free of this baggage, or these habits, we need to heal first.
While it is not untrue that the past can affect our behaviour, the need to heal is brought into question by a shift in understanding which happens when we explore the nature of life’s experience. But let’s explore the accepted paradigm first.
“Treat others as you wish to be treated”
A message that many of us have grown up with. A message that makes total sense. When we aren’t suffering, that’s what we tend to do and so we expect the same in return. So, if someone treated you in a way you didn’t wish to be treated, it would have felt as though your wellbeing was on the line. The rule wasn’t followed, you suffered and felt insecure. If your security and wellbeing felt like it was under threat, you would have felt uneasy emotions. Learnt at a young age, the beliefs that come with that experience can be painful and can pervade into later life.
Exploring how you feel about the past with a view to healing it looks appropriate. But what if the peace is available now? Without digging up old traumas?
If what you really want is Peace, you can have it much more easily than you think.
This is the point where we look back to the original statement, about the change in a fundamental understanding. It starts by questioning who we really are. If it looks to us like who we are is limited to a body, a mind, a set of thoughts and memories – as our culture teaches us, we need help. If we look to the core of our being – our essence – who we really are, we notice that we are whole and perfect. Untouched by the past and secure in the here and now.
Peace is at the very core of our being. When identification with the memories drops away, we experience Peace.
When we forget
When we forget that Peace is at our core, we think we need to do something to attain it. With that belief, we’ll suffer. When we suffer, it’s harder to remember to treat others as we wish to be treated ourselves. Understanding the nature of this experience can help. If you want to explore the past, consider this:
The person who mistreated you must have been suffering themselves.
That doesn’t excuse it or make it forgivable. But it does go a way to helping you to understand their behaviour. From understanding, Peace can rise.
Think about your own behaviour; at some point in your life, you’ve done something to another person that you aren’t proud of. However mild, or minor. Why? You were suffering. You believed you needed to defend or promote yourself and your actions followed that belief.
Peace is so close that there are no steps you need to take to find it. While you can and may decide to go on a journey back to your memories, to view them in a different light; it’s not essential. The truth is that Peace is your essence. Without the mental running commentary of how thing ‘should’ be, Peace is experienced. You’ll have experienced this many times when thought spontaneously dropped away and Peace returned.
Don’t just take my word for it. Try it out for yourself. Go on the journey from you to You. Close your eyes and ask yourself, “without the belief of how things should have been in the past, how would I feel?”
This blog post is a scratch on the surface of this understanding. To really embody it, it’s important to keep exploring. Please look through other blog posts. Videos are coming soon on YouTube too.
Want to know more about how I can help? Drop me a line or give me a call. A successful coaching relationship depends upon a great rapport, so it’s important to talk. I want to get to know you, see inside your world and we can assess how we’d go from there!