January 4: Day 4
STEP ONE CONTINUED
We recognize we have been hurt, disappointed, or abused by religion or the religious.
Instruction: Accept the past.
Acceptance is not the same as approval. We don’t approve of religious abuse, or abuse of any kind, but we do need to accept that it happened. We can also realize that without our attention it could happen again. As people accept their past, even those things we would rather forget, we find ways to heal and move forward. Sometimes we deny things simply because we don’t recognize them for what they are. Once our eyes are opened and we see things clearly, we accept the damage, learn from it, move away from it, and heal from it.
How can we recognize abuse if we deny that it occurred? We certainly don’t want to create a false past and try to heal from things that didn’t actually happen, and we don’t want to give the past power over our present. You may only remember enough of your abuse to know something happened, but you don’t remember all the details. Trying to unearth religious abuse might not be the best approach. Simply waiting and allowing our memories to unfold in their own time will accomplish our desired end without forcing discovery. A simple statement, or prayer if you prefer, of determination to accept what happened will suffice. Here is a sample that you might find helpful:
I know there has been religious abuse in my past, and perhaps even in my present that I’m not aware of. I accept this as part of my journey, but I choose to heal from all hurts and leave the past so I can move forward.
Today’s Assignment is to try to make this a part of your affirmations every day for as long as it proves helpful. Here is the short version: I choose to heal from all hurts and leave the past so I can move forward.
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Our purpose is to help individuals to heal who have been injured by religion or the religious. We welcome your comments and questions.