Children, there are a lot of people in this world walking around feeling guilty about all the mistakes they’ve made, knowingly and unknowingly. Many of them succumbed to depression and other mental problems. Some of them even commit suicide. Many people who visit temples and go on pilgrimages, are looking for forgiveness from their wrongdoings. But very few find true peace from the guilt that haunts their mind.
Wallowing in regret and sadness over mistakes we’ve made can be compared to hugging and crying over a dead body. No matter how much we cry, it will not return to life. Similarly, no matter how much we try, we will never be able to go back in time and undo our mistakes. Time only moves forward.
When children get a small cut, they usually scratch it repeatedly and make the wound worse. It eventually gets to a point when they can no longer stand the pain. Repeatedly telling yourself, “I made these mistakes. I am a sinner” is just like this. It transforms a small wound into serious disease. It will never bring peace of mind.
In any circumstance, we must think practically. If we happen to fall, we must not stay on the ground, crying. Simply get up and continue to walk. Take every step with caution. Don’t lose hope.
A reporter asked a famous farmer, “What is the secret of your success?”
The farmer answered, “Taking right decisions.”
Again the reporter asked, “How could you make right decisions?”
“How did you gain experience?”
“From making wrong decisions.”
The practical experience the farmer received from making wrong decisions helped him make the right decisions. Then, when he made the right decisions, he succeeded. This farmer’s story teaches us that even wrong decisions become stepping stones to success.
This present moment is the only wealth we possess. Only in the present moment can we undo our mistakes and follow the path of goodness. When we become sad thinking about the past, we are wasting the invaluable present moment.
It isn’t important to know how we lived or what we did. What is most important is how well we choose to use our present time. This is what dictates our life path. Therefore, take a solid oath not to repeat your mistakes. If it is possible, take the necessary steps to undo those mistakes or make amends. Then walk ahead with focus on your goal. This is what is needed.
Amma, Sri Mata Amritanandamayi Devi