I’ve been practicing this spiritual way of life for many years now. It sometimes is put to the test. Not the principles. My ability to incorporate them. The ability to embrace what I’ve been talking about for nearly half of my life now sometimes requires a perseverance I wonder if I have.
It is the ego of course that drives me to want to adhere to these ideas of making amends. Ego, that I somehow now have to walk this talk that I’ve been espousing to anyone who’d listen. I’ve spent hours in gatherings and talking from a podium to folks at these gatherings about the spiritual healing that occurs from this practice. The practice of attempting to make restitution.
I say attempting because restitution is relative.
Reparation made by giving an equivalent or compensation forloss, damage, or injury caused; indemnification.
There have been times when I’ve been more successful than others. Sometimes reparation is not possible. If you’ve smashed something to smithereens – like trust. How can you restore that? Sometimes I can’t. That doesn’t mean I should not make the attempt. Sometimes the very attempt is where the spiritual healing can occur.
If I look inside my heart, and my intentions and then align my actions to match – a miracle can occur. Not that forgiveness is always given. That’s not the miracle. The miracle that I have expanded my conscience to genuinely not to repeat a behavior that causes others harm. Sure, it’s causing me harm. If it didn’t – if there were no consequence – to me – directly – I quite likely wouldn’t see the point. I am, still at heart, a selfish being. That, would appear, unfortunately is part of my human existence. Maybe others have transcended this selfishness – I have not (yet).
There will be times when even the superglue of intention, heart felt regret, and action cannot mold back together something which lay in smithereens.
Sorry never held much sway or power in my life. Whether people were conveying it to me (mostly because I knew how little it meant coming out of my mouth) or whether I was trying to convince you I was sorry. I think this was mostly because:
a.) It didn’t mean I truly was
b.) I didn’t want you to think that it meant I wouldn’t do it again tomorrow under the same circumstances.
c.) I didn’t want you to think that it meant I wouldn’t do it again tomorrow under different circumstances.
Basically, that selfish nature prohibits me from matching my sincerity in the moment to a long lasting memory of the consequences i.e. pain I’m feeling right now. Thus – the humbling act of restitution provides a cost. A tangible way of remembering the cost of my actions. The price to be paid for arrogance and disregard for others.
In this latest instance, I’ve attempted this act. And, it would appear it’s a situation of smithereens. I have no power over this. I can only make the offer of an attempt to set right a wrong. And, whether people then choose to broadcast my shortcomings – to brand me with a scarlet letter – well, maybe that’s the cost. The consequence. The price.
So, even if I’m branded whatever the term dujour may be, what’s most important to remember – is that somewhere in here there must be a lesson in humility. My instinctual response to want to strike back only would exacerbate this situation. It would certainly defeat any purpose or lesson which may be garnered from this. And, in the end, that may be all there is to gather from this debacle.
I don’t think this event is going to alter the course of my human experience. I don’t know that I’ll not sin again next year. Next month. In the next five minutes. What I pray is, that I don’t repeat the same mistakes again. Then – I’d have to say I’ve found no value what so ever.
But – I believe I have.