Yom Kippur / Day of Atonement
As I open my computer I get a few messages for a Hatima Tova – Good signature. In the Jewish tradition this means may you be inscribed and sealed for a good year. It is Yom Kippur – Day of atonement, and we hope – or better yet, practice (forgiveness meditation) – to resolve old issues, to clean up our slate, so this coming year would be a splendid one.
Yoga, Zen and the Mind
Yoga is the stopping of the mind movements, and Zen teaches us to find Just This – this moment. Both teach us that our mind is the subject of most of our suffering, and if we practice, we can dissolve away from letting the mind master our emotions and way of being. We can instead, use the mind as an additional tool in our relative (or nature – prakriti), experience. A tool, not a master.
The Jewish Tradition
The Jews have their clean up day as the Day of atonement. Most Jews will go to the synagogue and pray. I like to do this guided forgiveness meditation instead, and have some additional time for silent sitting. I scan quickly the past year, and take mental notes one what could be done better and different. Then, I set intentions on what I may need to work on, or who I need to ask for forgiveness. Make sure to reserve time with no reflection – just sitting still. The rain drops fall on their own, the lettuce magically appears from a seed, and all of life is simply doing its thing!
Coincidence: I am just finishing this awesome novel, in which the day of atonement is a big part of.
The Practice of Forgiveness Meditation
Below is a forgiveness meditation to release any unnecessary holdings of emotions or mind stuff (citta vritti) that is holding us from being free. This is a guided forgiveness meditation that is somewhat like doing spring cleaning for our mind and emotions. It is time to remove that which does not serve you anymore. This will help you feel lighter, happier, and also create space for new adventures and love.
We practice forgiving others, not judging what happened, but really forgiving unconditionally. We also practice forging ourselves. Seems obvious, but many of us hold anger towards our own doings. Then we ask forgiveness from others, through our mind, and if needed setting an intention to connect with whom ever we need to in order to ask for forgiveness.
In addition, we practice letting go of past harmful doing or thinking and set intentions on a cleaner future. Practice this in a quiet space, where you can really allow your self to surrender.
Take this meditation as a 28 day challenge. Sit with it every other day for 28 days, and you will find amazing results.