Soul Contracts and Forgiveness

This article is Part 2 in a series prompted by my second Saturn return and reflections on a painful turning point in my life. In Part 1: Defining Moments, or “How I Lost God and Found My Way” I tell the story of leaving behind the religion of my family lineage to set forth on a solo quest for Truth.

To recap: I was 12 years old when I broke the news to my mother that I didn’t believe in Judaism. At that age, I didn’t have the inner resources to deal with the conflict that followed. I was too afraid to stand up to my mother’s authority when she told me, “You’re too young to know what you think”. This statement hurt me deeply, and in an unconscious attempt to protect myself, I shut down. I held on to my hurt and anger for a very long time, and I saw myself as a victim in this scenario. Now I’m taking a new look at my old story.

Part 2: Soul Contracts and Forgivenesssaturn_1509887c

The first glimmering of forgiveness toward my mother came when I began studying astrology. One day, I read about Saturn in Sagittarius (which is where Saturn is in my birth chart). The astrology book said, “People with Saturn in Sagittarius are often born into a family with a dogmatic religious orientation. They need to learn to find their own spiritual path.” I suddenly saw my rejection of Judaism and my conflict with my mother from a cosmic perspective. I saw that it had all been perfectly designed by a higher intelligence for the benefit of my spiritual evolution.

From this perspective, my painful experience was not my mother’s fault. It wasn’t Judaism’s fault. It wasn’t my fault. In fact, it wasn’t a “fault” or a mistake or even a problem. As Byron Katie says, “Life is simple. Everything happens for you, not to you. Everything happens at exactly the right moment, neither too soon, nor too late. You don’t have to like it…it’s just easier if you do.”

Astrology taught me that my deeply personal story (being born into a conservative religious family, longing to be close to God, becoming disillusioned, and setting off to find my way, alone) was also the archetypal story of Saturn in Sagittarius’ quest for Truth. I knew intuitively that having Saturn in Sag. was no coincidence. I saw that my soul chose to come into this religious family for a reason. My religious upbringing gave me something to push against, Saturn wall quotewhich gave me the impetus to start searching for another way…a way that would truly feed my spiritual hunger…a way better designed to wake me up…a way that I would need to forge, myself, without an outer authority telling me what to believe or how to express my spirituality.

When I realized that my painful experience had a higher purpose and that on some level I had chosen this experience, it became clear to me that my parents were simply playing the roles assigned to them. They were not against me, they were actually FOR my spiritual evolution (although they weren’t aware of this, consciously). We were all in cahoots in creating and enacting this drama. It was a soul contract between us, and we’d played our parts perfectly. How could there be any blame?

opening door w sunNow there was a huge crack in the solidified and entrenched belief that I was a victim. Through that crack, the light of forgiveness began to filter into my mind. I wish I could tell you that this first light of forgiveness completely dissolved my long-held anger and resentment. Over the years, I’ve worked with forgiveness lessons from A Course in Miracles and The Way of Mastery, I’ve taught others about forgiveness (we teach what we’re learning), and I’ve worked on this with The Work of Byron Katie. I’ve been in psychotherapy and even did a mother-daughter workshop with my Mom, many years ago. All of these things have been helpful, and I still have some forgiving yet to do. For me, forgiveness is many-layered, and I’m still in process.

Understanding that things don’t just happen to us, randomly, and that we have soul contracts with the major players in our lives, helps me accept and value my challenging relationships. I’m curious how this notion of “soul contracts” sits with you. Does it ring true for you, at an intuitive level? Does it affect your ability to forgive? Please leave a comment, below.

Writing this series of articles has prompted me to go deeply within and continue working with my forgiveness process. Click here for Part 3: Four Dimensions of Forgiveness

Click here for Part 4: How I Came Back to God

6 Comments

  • Andrea Treimel says:

    Dear Sagit, I’m enjoying your writing and reflections. I passed this one onto Stephen, as he has been doing a lot of forgiveness work on his family after being raised in a strict Catholic family.,
    My parents were not very religious though we attended Methodist church, but I never felt pushed at all. Still I drifted away on my own when it seemed too ritualized and not very meaningful.
    You first article caused me to reflection the twists and turns my spiritual life has taken. I have not changed much, except to leave the Christian roots pretty far behind, but find Mindfulness very familiar and comfortable these days, and I’m practicing it at work with clients in DBT, as well as continuing meditation and yoga on my own.
    Thanks for your musings. Great to be hearing from you again. Happy Hanukkah! 🙂 Lots of love, Andi

    • sajit greene says:

      Hi Andrea,
      Thanks so much for your comment on my writings about the Sagittarius Saturn Return and forgiveness. I know we’re both in this process (and Happy Birthday!). I hope that Stephen found some nuggets, here, to support his own forgiveness process.
      Love,
      Sajit

  • Hi Sajit,
    I found your insight here very grounded and inspiring. Forgiveness is SUCH a complex issues, and I find that people often “forgive too soon” or claim that they have, which just means that they have closed off a part of their heart and shoved their hurt and anger into the shadow realm where it roils and resurfaces in other ways. I have never thought of things as you outlined above, that with our sacred contracts we can view others as playing out their “assigned roles.” I also like this metaphor of viewing walls that block our path as re-directions that we cannot understand at the time. I can feel the shift in feeling tone as I think of certain people and situations in my own life.

    My women’s sexuality book “In Search of Aphrodite:Women Archetypes, and Sex Therapy ” (Routledge) came out in October and is available from my website, or from Amazon!

    Keep up the great blogging!
    Chelsea Wakefield

    • sajit greene says:

      Hi Chelsea,
      I appreciate your reflections on my writings on forgiveness and glad it offered some new ways to understand this complex process.
      Congrats on your new book!
      What’s your web address?
      Sajit

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