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ARE YOU READY TO FORGIVE? The complicated, gritty path to grace.

 

It’s complex. It’s confusing. It’s deeply particular. It’s the through-line of most mystical teachings:

Forgiveness.

I’m a “Forgiveness Aspirant.” I’m just as good at holding a grudge as I am at letting it go, but for the most part, I want to be as gracious as possible, and I really do believe that forgiveness is the primary Light source of an illumined existence.

That said, choosing—at a critical moment—not to forgive was one of the most spiritual, Soul-affirming acts of my life.

For me, divorce was like having my bones broken very, very slowly, one limb after the next, and then each rib—which made it difficult to breathe for a long time. It was brutal. It didn’t matter that I was the one walking away. I had to crawl my way back into the Light. The dismantling of the marriage agreement itself was very civilized and straightforward. But I had no idea that the real work had just begun. You can’t move on to a new life until you unpack the old one—or burn it down to the ground.

So, I unpacked. I also torched, and past-life-regressed, and journaled, and therapized, and danced, and raged, and grieved, and owned my way through every inch of the journey. I had to go back and do some of it over again, just to make sure it was out of my system. I was not going to take the past into my future. I held up each memory and emotion to surmise: is this a Truth or is this a lie? I was extremely thorough. And when my work was done, which took way longer than I would have preferred, I had become one of those rebirthed, empowered woman clichés. All I could say when asked was, “I’m better than ever. Like, better than ever.”

Toward the end of that long trip, I was working with an exquisite healer—she’s a total energy ninja. We were working on getting my adrenals back in shape. Cutting some energy cords, putting some astral protection into place…you know, the usual. I’d had a series of disturbing dreams that week, indicators of “intrusions,” you could say. I was ready to analyze them, up my frankincense oil intake, chant some Durga mantras, and keep on keeping on.

At the end of a text exchange we were having about the effects of Light meditation on the nervous system, this Lady Ninja of the Light wrote, “D, you have to forgive him.” My face flushed with heat and my stomach sank. It wasn’t what I was expecting to hear. I’d come so far. My life was beginning to shimmer. My money was mine, I was back in my body, my heart was lush with Love and gratitude. So much of my reinvention had been about reckoning and validating my sanity for all the times that I’d thought I was crazy. I was finally seeing clearly. I had boundaries in place. I was over it.

I read that sentence over three times. “D, you have to forgive him.” Then I burst into hot, panicked tears. I’d been calm just moments before. Now I was frantic. Because here’s what I heard echoing inside of the words “forgive him”:

“Dismantle your boundaries, make yourself wrong, admit to things you never did so everyone thinks you’re nicer and saner than you may appear, let him back into your heart, and effectively dissolve your last few years of intense self-scrutiny and resurrection. And while you’re at it, let him into your house, be friendly, be a progressive family unit, and for God’s sake, smile more—because that is what it means to be a truly spiritual person, Danielle.”

At least that’s how I interpreted it.

My phone rang. (Lady Ninja of the Light is so tuned in that she could feel my panic across the country.) I didn’t bother to compose myself before I answered. I just received the call and wept into the phone.

Let me pause here and say that this ninja healer is one of the most cherished beings in my life. When I figure out one of the esoteric riddles she gives me, I feel accomplished. I want to continue learning from her as long as I can. Her respect matters to me—a lot.

She listened gently on the other end of the line as I cried and cried.

After a minute or so, she said, “D?”

I felt like I was in a movie version of an ancient Greek myth. I was the sweaty protagonist, sword in hand, tired as hell, trying to stay alive in a succession of tests. Do I go left down the maze, or right? Do I scale the wall, or do I accept defeat?

I took a stuttered but full inhale because in that moment, I knew which way I was going to go. I also knew that my beloved mentor would see me as an unfit spiritual student, and our time together would come to an end.

“I’m sorry,” I broke the silence. “But I just can’t do it.” Long pause. “I can’t forgive if it means letting him back into my heart. I’ve come too far.” Silence. What I was thinking was, I know you think I’m a loser, but I really have no choice. Thank you for working with me; you can break up with me now.

I wanted to be spiritually respectable, but I just couldn’t care about “evolving” anymore. For once, I was only exactly where I was. No aspiration, all acceptance. My knowing was coursing through my body; it felt impossibly wrong to abandon it. So there I stood, with my inconvenient Truth. I don’t think I’ve ever been as human as I was in that moment.

And then Lady Light burst out laughing her oh, honey-child kind of laugh. “Oh, God no! You do not have to give him the time of day. Ever again. Noooo. Just forgive his SOUL!” She laughed some more. “It’s actually the hardest work to do—because that’s what’s real.”

“So don’t let down my guard?” I said, all snuffly and hopeful.

“Nope. Please don’t.”

“Forgive his Soul?” I confirmed.

“Yep. The biggest thing there is.”

“Oh! Well I can do THAT! I’m halfway there!”

“You’re way more than halfway there. This is the finish line,” she affirmed.

“Well, that’s all you needed to say!” Then we laughed that awesome post-sobbing, post-skill-testing-question, full-bodied woman laugh. Sweet relief! I was going to stay the course:

Keep it real, aim high, do the divine work.

Of course, it wasn’t quite that easy—the actual forgiveness practice of my Soul addressing his was profoundly painful at times. But it didn’t last long. At that stage, it was like removing slivers instead of cracking bones.

I sat in meditation, and over the course of many months, I streamed Light and Love to his Higher Self. I pictured him standing directly in front of me and I gazed at him with total kindness. If that felt too close for comfort on that day, then I’d just imagine him as a Light form of pure energy. I allowed his Soul to come near to mine again. I let myself adore who he truly is. And I thanked him, over and over again, for participating in our agreement to play out what we did in this lifetime. I took it a step further and extended the same gratitude to all of the people in his life. I prayed for their well-being. I cherished his very Soul. Completely.

By honouring my humanity, I got fuller access to my divine power. On Earth, in the day-to-day, my boundaries stayed very much intact. And I moved forward much more freely, navigating with a lighter heart.

This is a peek-a-boo from my new book love, White Hot Truth, Chapter 9: READY TO FORGIVE. You can read or listen to the entire chapter free by clicking HERE.


Most of us have a forgiveness story we’re in the midst of unravelling. Send this to someone who needs to give themselves a break, or give up their grudge. xo.

Tweet it out:

Keep it real, aim high, do the divine work.

Forgiveness can be a swift recovery, or not arrive until a generation later.

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Photo Credit: Catherine Just

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Why positive thinking might be leading us in the wrong direction.

Danielle-LaPorte-Deep-Positivity.

 

Deep positivity.
If there could be a slogan for manifestation theory, this would be it:
Energy follows thought. Energy follows thought. Energy follows thought. And by the way…energy follows thought.

Manifestation happens from the mind.

For it to work effectively, you must achieve clarity of desire, root into the depths of positivity, fend off doubts with Faith, and repeat. Every minute of every day, give or take. If you let your mind wander unattended into heavier thought-forms, like fear, or lack, or mistrust, then you’ll likely hatch all sorts of chaos and attendant anxiety about that chaos. Notice I said “let your mind wander unattended.” Because, inevitably, all kinds of negativity will cross your mind. If you’re paying attention to that inner dialogue, you can redirect the conversation. If you train your mind to focus on “brighter” thought-forms (like courage, trust, kindness, abundance, one’s right to joy), then you’ll manifest more of those feelings, thoughts, and experiences.

Since energy follows thought, obviously, we want to keep our thinking—especially with respect to our creating our future—as “positive” as possible. But this is nowhere close to easy to do. It’s intense work. Doubts will surface, mental garbage from our past will churn up, our daily life will still include bills to pay, relationships to nurture. Returning to positivity, consistently, can be the hardest thing ever. And the best. And the hardest. Is staying consistently positive even possible? Yes. But it might not be what you think.

“POSITIVE THINK”
Let’s break down “positive-think,” because this is precisely where most manifestation techniques mess with our heads. Positive-think might suggest that it can make the bad things vanish. But “bad things” in life usually require some confrontation and management from our side. What’s really problematic with positive-think is that we’re being trained to use it solely to try to get what we want. This is shallow positivity. Stay with me. We need to be positive for multiple reasons: because it alleviates suffering, because it’s good for our health, because it’s a form of kindness.

If we’re “thinking positive thoughts” just to manifest what’s on our vision board, then what happens when we don’t get what we want? We crash into negative thinking. Positive thinking has to be rooted in the heart, not in the attainment of stuff. We need to go much deeper.

DEEP POSITIVITY

Deep positivity means that you have Faith that you’ll be okay, no matter what happens.

Not if it all works out for you in the end.
Not
if you get what you want when you think you should get it. No matter what.
Deep positivity knows that Life will have your back even when you don’t manifest what you want.

Let your energy follow that thought.

This is a peek-a-boo from my new book love, White Hot Truth, Chapter 17: DESIRE, REFINED. You can read or listen to the entire chapter free by clicking HERE.

White-Hot-Truth-Chapter-17

And THEN…join me for lunch on Facebook Live tomorrow HERE at [12pm PT/ 3pm ET] We’ll break down “positive-think”, get rooted in the heart and go deep on the clarity of desire. And I’ll do a Q&A!


Cheer on your friend. More…positively. But mo’ deep. Press forward.

Tweet it out:

Deep positivity means that you have Faith that you’ll be okay, no matter what happens.

Energy follows thought. Energy follows thought. And by the way…energy follows thought.

Click here to Pin or right click to download + share on Instagram.

Photo Credit: Catherine Just

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Antidepressants, meditation, the Goddess, and antibiotics. Making up your healing path.

Danielle-LaPorte-Mixing-Medicine

At a university house party, a new friend shared that she’d started taking Prozac for her depression (and as a result she couldn’t orgasm). “Well, what did your therapist say?” I asked her. “I’ve never been to a therapist,” she replied. Naïvely, I asked, “Well, how’d you get the Prozac?” Simple. “I told my doctor I was depressed and he wrote me a prescription.” I took a breath to keep my face soft but I was having a hard time understanding this. “A medical doctor?” I asked. “Ya, the guy who does my pap smears.” I couldn’t let it go—and we needed to get that girl having orgasms again. “How often do you go to this guy?” I gently pressed. She shrugged, “Once or twice a year.”

Antidepressants can be the best course of action for breaking painful cycles and getting much needed respite from severe depression. But the fact that one in four women in the United States alone is taking antidepressants makes me want to weep.

I once had a public conversation about this with Dr. Sara Gottfried, a Harvard-trained MD. She said, “We know that most of those women—the one in four—they’re struggling with stress, with hyper-vigilance, with cortisol. Fifty percent of people with depression have high cortisol. We know that twenty percent of people with depression have a problem with their thyroid—a slow thyroid—and often, no one bothered to check those levels. We also know that a lot of this has to do with being in that less resourceful, reactive, triggered place too much of the time, and not able to declare how it is that you want to feel—which is where Desire Mapping comes in.” Yes, ahem, some self-help books can come in very handy.

Dr. Sara went on: “We also live in a culture that’s determined to throw a prescription pill at the problems that we have, yet we’re not getting to the root cause. Let’s start with the biology along with the work on the psyche.” Applause!

On the other end of the self-care range are the stubborn self-help warriors (I’ll raise my hand). “I’m just going to do some visualizations and up my echinacea,” you tell your friend during your second week of coughing up chunks of your lungs. “I’m just processing some stuff.” And through the other end of the phone your buddy yells, “GO TO THE DOCTOR! YOU NEED DRUGS!” You crawl to the clinic and wonder what took you so long to get there.

One of my closest friends is a gifted intuitive and Ayurvedic practitioner. Her newly minted ex-husband was dishing out one shocking surprise after another. She was preparing for their son’s wedding, where she’d have to be civil to her ex and his whole snooty clan. We were strategizing on how she’d survive the festivities without stabbing anyone or going fetal on the dance floor.

“I don’t know if I can hold it together much longer,” she said, quivering and angry all at once. Context: this is a woman who sees angels in the grocery store, who dreams prophetically, who has healed herself from breast cancer—twice. She’s a contemporary, real-deal Priestess. “You can do this,” I affirmed. Then she spit it out: “I think I should get some Xanax to take before the reception.” Silence. Based on our mutual history of self-help bravado, she was probably expecting me to suggest that she steer clear of the mood drugs and just do some mantras on the drive to the country club. “Fuckin’ do it!” I cheered. “Get the meds and just get through the ordeal.”

There’s a time and place for everything.

Knowing the right time and the right place is how you become your own healer.

In summary: psychology sorts out how your parents screwed you up when you were a child. Buddhism looks at how your mind can transmute your emotions about how screwed up you are. Spiritualists look at the past lives in which you and your parents were mutually screwed up, and how you can use that knowledge to become a more loving person in this lifetime. And if all that fails, call a doctor.

This is a peek-a-boo from my new book love, White Hot Truth, Chapter 4: HEALING INSTINCTS. You can read or listen to the entire chapter free by clicking HERE.

White-Hot-Truth-Chapter-4

And THEN…join me for lunch on Facebook Live tomorrow HERE at [12pm PT/ 3pm ET] Where we’ll tawk antidepressants, meditation, and where an over-prescribed culture meets the sometimes in-denial New Age. And I’ll do a Q&A!


Be a healer. Forward this to a friend who needs to hear it. xo

Tweet it out:

Knowing the right time and the right place is how you become your own healer.
To heal, we need to look everywhere for our Light.

Click here to Pin or right click to download + share on Instagram.

Photo Credit: Catherine Just

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