Understanding that my addiction and Mistaken Identity (false self) were behind my inability to forgive myself made it much easier to let go and practice self-forgiveness in recovery.
The following quote further expanded and enhanced my self-forgiveness.
“The Source (God) does not know forgiveness because God is Love, and God cannot forgive because IT has never condemned.” ~ A Course in Miracles
Only the ego and toxic shame of our Mistaken Identity stop us from knowing all is forgiven because God does not know condemnation. The only thing holding us back from being forgiven is ourselves.
As part of my healing process, I wrote down on paper the things I had not been able to forgive myself, attaching the “I forgive you …” to each. Then, I said aloud: “I forgive you for not finishing university. I forgive you for stealing from Linda. I forgive you for introducing Nicole to cocaine. I forgive you for abandoning Tiny. I forgive you for being dishonest with your family over many years of addiction. I forgive you for cheating on your ex-wife. I forgive you for trying to kill yourself.”
Next, I shared these and my deepest secrets with another trusted human. In the twelve-step world, this is part of step five.
Forgiving ourselves does not mean that we condone or minimize behaviors where we may have harmed others. It’s about understanding and accepting that we are human beings who make mistakes. If amends are called for, we make them.
Our sobriety is one of the most important living amends we can make to the people we’ve hurt.
We do not condone their hurtful actions or behaviors when we forgive others. We let go of our resentment, anger, and rage toward the other person to move on with our lives. The alternative is more constriction, loss of freedom, and painful relationships.
Forgiveness is about choosing compassion and not allowing the past to define us. We find peace when we give up trying to settle scores and surrender to the Universal Mind and its Karma.
One of my favorite forgiveness quotes comes from the biblical Jesus on the cross, saying, “Forgive them Father for they don’t know what they do.”
...It opened my heart to more profound forgiveness."
Knowing that Love is our final destination because we are Love already will help you with deeper acceptance and forgiveness.