Forgiveness Is Like Kale

acim blog

Some things you have to experience to believe.

I’d heard about the power of forgiveness for a long time before I tried it. I didn’t see how it could make that much of a difference, really. And if I did mentally try to forgive someone, it was always half-hearted, like trying to make yourself like kale. I knew that kale was good for me, and that it would be helpful to eat it, but that bitter taste drove me away. I had to disguise the kale with a lot of other stuff to make it edible. So really, I was just choking it down.

Same with forgiveness. I didn’t really want to forgive say, someone like my ex, because it was all his fault. To forgive him would mean he got away with it. It would be condoning his behavior. I would be a victim all over again.

Now I can see that all that finger-pointing kept me from owning my part in anything ever. By projecting blame outward, I didn’t have to examine my own behavior. I used other people’s bad behavior to justify my own. He deserved it! And then I became this little gremlin inside, always plotting to undermine someone or manipulate people to join in my finger-pointing. And because I was a gremlin inside, I felt guilty. My thoughts were anything but pure.

Guilt is a bitter pill to swallow. Worse that straight kale, no dressing.

Everyone chooses their own path to forgiveness. AA talks about letting go of resentments. I follow A Course in Miracles, which tells you that forgiveness is the way to nirvana, basically. And who doesn’t want that? It teaches how to let go of blame completely by seeing other people as completely worthy of love. That took a lot of reading and practice from me, but I’m getting there.

I’ve found that forgiving is entirely in my own self-interest. And it’s true! It really works. I feel so much lighter and happier, now that I’ve set down the burden of attack and guilt. Ultimately, it allows me to forgive myself. It’s like a process for me. I forgive someone, and then I have a memory of something I did that I found unforgivable. Now, however, I see myself with the same compassion I extended to the person I forgave. I see it in the same light of forgiveness that I shined on someone else.

So all forgiveness is really for you. When you can see yourself with compassion, the gremlin goes away, and all that’s left is the beautiful light within you, shining out into a world that needs it.

17 thoughts on “Forgiveness Is Like Kale

  1. I recently moved to a house with a neglected vegetable patch. Everything was dying or dead except? The kale. Just like forgiveness, tough stuff but very hardy.

    Loved this post 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. “Now I can see that all that finger-pointing kept me from owning my part in anything ever. By projecting blame outward, I didn’t have to examine my own behavior. I used other people’s bad behavior to justify my own. He deserved it!”

    Oh, this is SO absolutely right. I’ve never had a problem with forgiving people. Sometimes I don’t even have to conciously think about doing it, I already did – kind of thing. But you’ve just described my son to a tee. I remember hearing him blaming everyone else for the drink, the drugs…but then one day he just broke and then he was owning it, owning everydamnedthing. It was good for him and for me to see that he finally got it.

    Love this post. Thank you! X

    Liked by 1 person

    1. People spend their whole lives blaming others. It takes some introspection to see how flawed we are as well. I am so impressed that forgiveness comes so naturally to you. I have some good friends who are like that, while I have to take spiritual courses to learn how to be more forgiving. You already know how to do it! Amazing.

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      1. It was my upbringing I think, Shawna? My parents were remarkable people and I can’t remember them saying a bad word about anyone. If anything though, it’s made me much harder on myself than I would EVER be on someone else. Ya know? X

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Forgiveness and love is the way! I love the course in miracles although I’m referencing Marianne Williamson’s Return to Love not the BIG books:) I’m lazy:) By the way I actually like Kale…is that weird? That is weird.

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    1. I like Kale now, as long as it has some other kind of lettuce with it. Marianne Williamson’s book is how I got started in the Course, but not until almost 15 years after I read it. Reading a book by Gabrielle Bernstein is similar in that it makes it more understandable. Putting what I learn into practice has been the real challenge, however. ; )

      Liked by 1 person

  4. So, so true, all of the above. I found that forgiving my ex early on was so beneficial. My current hubby has not, will not, may never not, forgive his ex. It’s sad. I see it eat him up. But then she is more contentious and malicious than I ever saw in my own ex so I can’t really say I have walked a mile in his shoes…..

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  5. Beautiful post. Yes forgiveness helps us to let go of any toxic resentment that can be quite unhealthy for us and others.
    To eating delicious garlic, salty, crispy, kale chips, or drinking refreshing, fruit filled yummy kale smoothies.
    All the best.
    Xoxo
    M

    Liked by 1 person

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