Eid Mubarak! Blessed Idul Fitri to all who celebrates!
Growing up in Indonesia, this holiday is on the top 5 of important holidays in my life. It’s kinda like the Golden Week in China or Japan and Thanksgiving in the States. Everyone gathers with their family, the road is quiet, and it’s all about togetherness. To get a better picture of Eid in Indonesia, check out my post from last year.
In Indonesia (and Malaysia and Singapore), after wishing someone Eid Mubarak, we normally continue by saying “Mohon Maaf Lahir dan Batin”, which literally means “[I/ We] ask forgiveness on the physical and soul level.” I think this is a great tradition cause it reminds all of us of Forgiveness.
To me, Forgiveness is something that happens continuously. There’s always someone that we can learn to forgive, and that someone includes ourselves. Especially ourselves.
It’s really easy to pass out forgiveness as a lip service, but doing it completely and fully is not always easy, especially when we’ve been hurt badly. Sometimes, it feels impossible to forgive others. And often we think there’s no reason why we should forgive the other person cause he/she/they have hurt us. Right?
So how do we get into forgiveness?
Firstly, let’s shift our perspectives. We don’t forgive for others’ sake. We forgive for ourselves. Forgiveness is not done to negate what has happened. It doesn’t take away the hurt and it does not mean that what has happened wasn’t bad. But we forgive so that we can move on and live free of all these attachments.
By forgiving, we accept the situation, we come back to the present and to ourselves and claim our power. We say “enough of this hurt” and “what you did, said, and thought no longer has power over me. I claim my power and I’m coming back to being whole.”
And the second very important component of forgiveness is Compassion.
Compassion is like the yummy soothing balm that wraps our heart with the glow of its honey-like spread. It softens and warms and reminds us of self-love.
Compassion goes hand in hand with Forgiveness cause it reminds us that it’s not about being perfect, but it’s about the progress.
Here’s an Example
I grew up in a way that I feel the pressure of always excelling at things and getting things right and well. Originally, they were external pressures. But eventually, they become an internal pressure.
I started self-judging and talking to myself harshly when I didn’t get something fast or when I didn’t do something well. I started realizing this in the last decade and really noticing how tiring it was.
So I started learning self-forgiveness. I started softening the heart and the mind and said to myself that the harsh words I said to myself and the pressures I gave myself no longer have power over me. I am loved and whole the way I am.
But old habits die hard, right? I started noticing that I gave myself pressure to get self forgiveness right. Hah! It’s really funny. Why did I judge myself for not being able to forgive myself? ^_^ Well, I’m just human. ….And that was when compassion kicked in.
I started seeing myself as a toddler who is learning things. How do we help a toddler learn? By encouraging the toddler and celebrating every little milestone.
He/ she managed to put one foot in the shoe by him/ herself!! Hoorah! He/ she managed to hold the spoon! Hoorah!
And so I said to myself, I noticed what my mind is doing to myself! Hoorah!! I forgive myself for not getting things right and I started celebrating every little milestones towards self-forgiveness.
There you go, folks!
Remember that forgiveness has always been for yourself, not others. And that failing is part of the process and always always be compassionate with yourself.
So on this lovely season, I wish you all blessings. Mohon Maaf Lahir dan Batin. I ask forgiveness for things I may have said or done wrongly.
Blessings be upon you,