Rewriting personal history, memory, forgiveness
Take a simple memory from childhood that is largely negative in its emotional content. Don’t choose a tremendously traumatic experience. Pick something “light”.
Go over it once or twice-no more than that.
Now, in your mind, with your imagination, rewrite that “scene” from your past so that it is a completely different and happy moment in your life.
Whatever troubled you about that time, well, imagine that it just didn’t happen. Write whatever story you want, but the more realistic the better. Go over this story in your imagination, adding details where necessary, MANY times. Imagine the details, the emotions, the words, the actions-everything.
How many times? Do this until the original memory now has to compete with the “new memory” for validity. Do this until you are uncertain what actually happened. Do this until you are certain that the new memory is much more likely to be the true version. This takes anywhere from ten minutes to a few hours-depending on the person practicing the method, the intensity of the original experience, and the intensity of the effort put into the practice of the exercise.
Ask yourself,What is the nature of my memory that it can be erased or at least contested with a fabrication?
What is the likelihood that I have done and am steadily doing this right now? Do I put memories into my nervous system that are filtered, colored, changed or fabricated “on the fly” by my ever-changing values?
What is the value of holding a negative memory as something “sacred” that should remain untouched?
What is the longer-term payoff to practicing this technique whenever I have a negative experience that I want to “shake off”?
What is my moral and spiritual stance towards erasing memories? Does this stance serve my personal and spiritual growth?
If I could rid myself of major negative memories, would it be worth the effort and time?
What is the value of memory to me, if it is sometimes faulty or an unending source of discomfort?
How do I define myself? My memories? My actions? My knowledge? All this? Or none of this?