I am struck by how I cling to my own wounded self. Why do I think so much about the people who have offended or hurt me? Why do I allow them to have so much power over my feelings and emotions?
Why can’t I simply be grateful for the good they did and forget about their failures and mistakes?
It seems that in order to find my place in life I need to be angry, resentful, or hurt. It even seems that these people gave me my identity by the very ways in which they wounded me.
It is important to understand our suffering. It is often necessary to search of the origins of our mental and emotional struggles and to discover how other people’s action and our response to their actions have shaped the way we think, feel and act.
Most of all, it is freeing to become aware that we do not have to be victims of our past and can learn new ways of responding. But, there is a step beyond the recognition and identification of facts of life. There is even a step beyond choosing how to live our own life story. It is the greatest step a human being can take. It is the step of forgiveness.
Words from Henri J. M. Nouwen (Forgiveness:the name of love in a wounded world)
Photos from my favourite beach at Calicut...