Secretly I always wonder about the authenticity of happy peoples peacocking their blissful states of forgiveness… Deep down inside do they secretly have old rusty shrapnel stuck in the grooves of their soul because of something that once exploded so offensively that it became permanently embedded? Just like Secret Me who can’t seem to wrestle my inner self into submitting to let something go that just really is not OK? The argument that I am poisoning my own self makes sense, but only to my head that thinks about stuff, unfortunately the parts of me that feel things have no access to such influences like logic.
So, I started with the only thing I knew for certain: the present truth. And this is what I realized: In this holy temple of my heart which is supposed to be my pristine inner sanctum, my beautiful shiny core, a sacred space full of nothing but infinite divine love- there was actually graffiti on the walls and weeds coming through the cracks. And someone may have peed. Within the part of me that is supposed to be the most full of light, there was some straight up Ugly. Pure unfiltered hate. Yes, there was hate in my heart and I’m tired of feeling ashamed because our society only finds a select limited spectrum of human emotions acceptable, while we try to stuff the feelings that lie outside this range so far down that in many cases the pressure begins to mimic mental illness.
I even suspect I may have played a role in slow cooking the hate to it’s full savoriness, because I did not allow myself to feel the full blooms of my anger when I needed to. I denied them. And so it just sort of slow simmered in the background was never allowed to boil and then burn off.
Truth is, I have always been confused about how to force myself to feel compassion and love for someone if what I am truly feeling is hate. You can’t feel both at once. And trying to force myself to feel love and compassion instead of my honest feelings seems tantamount to using skim milk to paint a black wall . So I did the unthinkable. I decided to hate. Hate without shame. Hate to the fullest volume that it needed to resonate within me. I gave it space and let it burn for as long as it needed to, hoping that would be the way to start on the journey of turning it into something else. Before that, all I was really doing was stuffing it down and pretending it wasn’t there, exhausting myself by trying to love louder than the maddening inner screams of hate- only to one day realize… not only is it there, but it has learned how to hide in the shadows and feed itself.
It wasn’t the kind of hate that takes over your identity. It wasn’t a practice of hatred as a permanent state or a way of life. But I allowed my allow my hatred to bloom to its fullest… a hate that says, eff you. I deserved better. I was worth more. The journey into this darkness was ironically enlightening. I discovered the deeper truth- my hate was a just a thick cloak that hid a much deeper wound:
You have left me much smaller than I used to see myself. You hurt me in a way that I do not know how to heal.
And deeper still, the truth was I was a person who fit so well into those scenarios- which is perhaps the hardest part to sit with, the self-hatred.
I found a startling and profound freedom in my hate- in allowing it space, while trusting that finally being exposed to the light and fresh air of inner honesty would wear the sharp edges off of it and that over time it would become duller and duller until it just was no more. All of this time I had been so desperately trying to get to the end destination of forgiveness, that I never started on the path.