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Forgiveness, according to an ancient Egyptian lineage, is an inner healing journey. Forgiveness is a process that takes place in your inner world. Forgiveness is a verb, an activity, an ongoing passage, that stays purposefully engaged and alive.

In these ancient ways, forgiveness is not something that is asked for. Asking someone for forgiveness sets responsibility for resolution on the person(s) being asked. These usually are those affected by the harm, violation, and betrayal that have taken place.

Asking others for forgiveness is a disempowered stance. Forgiveness is unattainable unless granted upon you. Forgiveness may never be found because it’s availability is controlled by someone else. Forgiveness is an either-or,  yes or no, win-lose proposition.

This approach to forgiveness boxes us in. We’re situating ourselves and each other in power-over and powerless places, in either-or categories. Victim or victimizer. Wounded or not wounded. Forgiven or unforgivable. Good people or bad people. Who is truly being seen and heard? There’s no spaciousness to engage in healing and regeneration, naturally, sustainably, and uniquely for everyone involved.

As long as we set up our relationships with imbalances in power, we’ll keep making more wounding and harm. We’ll replicate and reinforce the patterns of trauma, disconnection, oppression, and fear.

In the ancient Egyptian lineage, the description for forgiveness is: returning to the state of being before the giving of an injury.

Forgiving is about reclaiming our original, unwounded, whole self. Forgiving happens inside. Reweaving. Reclaiming. Homecoming. Remembering who you really are, not defined by the wounds.

Forgiving is about being centered again your wholeness, your connectedness in the web of life, your passions, creativity, and purposes. Even when there has been injury to your body, mind, heart, and spirit. Even when you have harmed others with your actions, thoughts, and words. Even when any and all of this has occurred at some time in your life.

Forgiveness is not about white-washing or sugar-coating. Forgiving is not about putting on rosy-colored glasses and saying “everything’s fine.”

Forgiveness is about seeing what is and has been, who you are, who others are, and your capacity to heal with clarity, awareness, lovingness, and acceptance.

Returning-to-the-State-of-Being-Before-the-Giving-of-an-Injury is about wholeness and empowerment. Forgiving is naturally generated inside and radiates into everyday life, into how you live, speak, feel, think, and relate. Forgiveness opens the doorway to living centered in your heart, true to who you really are, respecting others for who they are.

Hurt people hurt people, including themselves. So when we tend to healing the hurt and the effects of trauma we carry, there will be much less harm done growing out of unhealed hurt.

We will love ourselves and each other into an existence free of the judgments and imbalances in power, into respectful, loving, and flourishing ways of relating with ourselves, each other, and all life on our earth and beyond.

We are in this healing together.


Forgiving &Raquo; Apppage2

Originally Published on

JoAnne Dodgson Ceremonial Healing

JoAnne Dodgson’s life is centered in the lineage of Ka Ta See and the path of the kala keh nah seh ~  medicine storyteller, weaver of webs of balance, healer, teacher, and ceremonial guide. She offers ceremonial healing, apprenticeships, and retreats to remember our belonging and weave harmony in our relationships with ourselves, each other, our earth, and web of life.

JoAnne has been learning, living, and sharing the ways of the kala keh nah seh for over twenty years. She has a doctorate in Counseling Psychology with a specialty in Holistic Health. As a therapist and community activist, she worked in trauma healing centers and college counseling centers. She has been on the faculty in Transpersonal Psychology, Women’s Studies, and Holistic Health programs. Earlier in her career, JoAnne was a teacher in public schools and residential programs for adolescents. She also served as the director of a women’s shelter.

To share her passion for the healing medicine of stories, JoAnne has written several books including Spirit of Chocolate: A Woman’s Journey to the Rainforest in Search of Her Dreams and UnLeashing Love. She lives in the enchanted desert mesas of New Mexico.

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