Quickie: Soul Mates and Forgiveness

by P. Braithwaite

I stalk The Daily Love, and the other day this nice juicy quote showed up in my inbox. It made me think about forgiveness:

“People think a soul mate is your perfect fit, and that’s what everyone wants. But a true soul mate is a mirror, the person who shows you everything that is holding you back, the person who brings you to your own attention so you can change your life. A true soul mate is probably the most important person you’ll ever meet, because they tear down your walls and smack you awake. Soul mates, they come into your life just to reveal another layer of yourself to you, and then leave. A soul mates purpose is to shake you up, tear apart your ego a little bit, show you your obstacles and addictions, break your heart open so new light can get in, make you so desperate and out of control that you have to transform your life, then introduce you to your spiritual master..” 

– Elizabeth Gilbert, page 149 from her book “Eat, Pray, Love“.

A friend of mine recently asked me if I believe in soul mates. I told him that I do, but not necessarily in a traditional star-crossed lovers way. I believe that we travel with a soul tribe who are often our best friends and greatest teachers. That said, it’s hard to think of an enemy or an ex-lover as your soul mate. While I don’t ALWAYS live in the theory that Gilbert proposes, I intuitively accept it as truth. On my best days, I understand that when our closest friends and partners hurt us, kick up deep fears inside of us, stretch us beyond our capacity and force you to face our fears — we can do nothing but thank them. They can be a former (or current) lover, a parent, a sibling, or a friend — a true soul mate give us back to ourselves. And getting back to the center of ourselves isn’t always a pleasant task…
On my 30 prayer challenge, I can benefit by looking at difficult people this way. Can you?