This statement is an altered version initially spoken by Jesus, where he asks God to Forgive the people at the time of his crucifixion. Jesus recognised several aspects of the situation, many we play out in our daily lives. If you haven’t considered the scenario or know it, please let me put things into context.
Jesus was aware of his fate. He knew he would be betrayed by his close circle, courted by the Government and Jury, sentenced for blasphemy, and accused of pretending to be greater than the King, and for this killed. Knowing the chain of events, and the inevitable would have been torture in its own right, would it not? However, Jesus knew what was coming. Yet, he used his ability and wisdom to see beyond the event. Beyond his human need to avoid pain, and challenge the wrongness of the pre-ordained event. He even pleaded with God to pass the cup by him, asking for release from the death phase of the contract. Immediately after, he also surrendered to his life purpose and fate.
What does any of this story have with us today? Whatever one chooses to make of it, but this is my take…
I propose, our life purpose is to unlearn the limitations and come back to pure love with self-compassion, empathy, curiosity, and learning. This translates to supporting each other and encouraging with compassion.
Let’s put this into perspective.
All of us are doing the best we can, with the resources we have at the time to respond to the challenges in an instant. From a generational point, our parents didn’t have it ‘right’. Their parents didn’t have it ‘right’, so how can we expect ourselves to have it right? Their ignorance, lack of skill, knowledge, personal insight, resources, or awareness. Support was not available to them, so they simply could not teach us anything different. Therefore, we are in many ways as ignorant as our parents, minus the bits we have learnt so far on our journey.
We don’t know what or that we don’t know.
If we are unaware, there could be other ways of thinking, feeling, and living; how can we create anything different? If we are scared of new possibilities. The ideas are foreign or don’t think it is for us, or we are not worthy of doing or having different things?
Suppose our auto-pilot rules from deeply ingrained beliefs, stories and lies dictate what is for us, reinforced by the people and places we associate with. In that case, change can feel like death itself. Being part of something, and being accepted by them, included in the group activities, etc., is an innate, animalistic need and driver. The fear is real, triggering the script of “If we are kicked out of the tribe, then we will experience certain death”. Before the Farming Revolution, with increased villages or towns, people living out of the tribe were at greater risk of starvation, being hunted, or being killed.
When we haven’t yet learnt how to do, be, or think differently or better, how can we be anything but what we have always been?
Our society and culture projects “We are meant to have it all together”. We are meant to exactly know what, how, and when to say, do and be in every situation. Not get it wrong, not to say things out of place, to consider others more than ourselves even when we are struggling to keep ourselves together and ok. This unfair expectation is like asking a primary school student to perform university-level maths!
Think about this for a second longer. Emotional Intelligence is not taught in schools, yet. Many children are still living in abusive, ineffective, or dysfunctional families. Trauma and limiting stories/beliefs about what they can, should, are able to, are available for them, etc., is still the main script for children. When children do not learn how to relate, self-regulate. What it feels, looks, and is to live in loving, caring, and nurturing ways. How can adults automatically live as well-adjusted, Emotionally Intelligent individuals who know how to care for themselves, their spouses, and children? It simply is a dream gone wrong!!
Consider too. Emotional Intelligence, trauma awareness, dysfunctional family dynamic awareness, etc., are only starting to be spoken about in the communities, and limited to pockets of people searching for or open to the possibility of something different. This group is a minority, potentially translating to several more generations of compromised children growing into compromised and unskilled adults.
No one is to blame. It is the way of the system, hence the Quote:
“Forgive them, Father, for they know what they do (yet).”
The solution I propose is this.
See yourself with self-compassion and others with more compassion? We are all in a learning zone if we choose to take the classes. The invitation is from many sources to expand our knowledge, skill, and insight into how our inner world operates so we can create a different reality and, therefore, way of living.
We forgave ourselves for not having it all together like apparently, we should!
We gave ourselves and others the space and time to learn, grow, and practice emotional intelligence and self-awareness. How do we create and choose who they want to be from character over material things?
We encouraged, celebrated, and revered the baby steps of growth.
Remove the expectation or desire to leap ahead in massive growth spurts of self-awareness, inter-relational skills, and choices.
We learnt about and healed our childhood and generational wounds. Those restricting the ease of coming back and living from the space of love, acceptance, allowance, support, nurturing, and care for ourselves and others.
We love ourselves more, making it is easier to open our hearts to others. To love, give support, compassion, encouragement and above all, see beyond the painful masks they are wearing to protect themselves from more hurt.
Life is a journey, a process of experiencing, healing, letting go, calling in more and more love and Divinity. There are detours, mountains, valleys, roundabouts, and opportunities. Each experience asks us to practice or learn skills, let go of heavy emotional baggage such as insecurity, inadequacy, limiting beliefs, fears, rejection, abandonment, and not enoughs. When we do this, we travel easier, lighter, no more treading water, that we don’t drown under the weight of the past.
It is possible. Growth starts with a thought, followed by enquiry. Add learning, healing, letting go, and transforming oneself into the character one chooses to be. Hopefully including traits that include more Love, Grace, Humility, etc.