forgiveness as making offering: lessons from the ancient

FORGIVENESS…”a time to cast away stones”

We see in the ancient practices of the Hebrew tribe, a wisdom of releasing. They knew of the weight we fleshy-bodied human creatures can carry in our hearts and minds. These peoples offered the “korban tamid”—a continual offering – daily, in fact – to clear the mis-takes and mis-alignments which they knew were inevitable. They are inevitable, also releasable, and common to us all. They are in fact, if we use ritual well, part of what members us in community.

Whether we are or are not aware of what weighs us with a sense of guilt, the ancient practices reflect, it is worthwhile to clear these weights- daily, energetically and with gesture. In order to clear anything in our emotional, mental or psychic bodies, we must release our grip on them.  Open palm. This is the altar. This is the nature of offering. As the Hebrew Temple altar was, this offering can be of fire.  As those Temple offerings were, they can be of objects most precious. Being human, we have a nature that can grip and grasp at even what ails us: even pain of shame, even pain of blame and feelings of retribution. Anything that identifies us has a sense of preciousness to us – even our ideas and opinions, even if they propagate hate and hard-hearts. Offer to Me what is most precious – is the essence of what the unnamable One instructs the tribe for their rituals.

In the “tekes mikhilah” ritual, we invoke the essential knowings of the ancient earth-walking wisdom. We engage in a fully embodied, direct experience of releasing the weighty stones. We witness ourselves and each other. We re-member in the sacred circle. There is nothing to do to prepare, except notice the weights. Perhaps even without the story that birthed them or was created by them. Just become aware of their presence in your body, your self.

Is it ready to be released? Is the longing for that space, for that love, alive?

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