Those who can not remember the past are condemned to repeat it
“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it” Santayana
I was reminded of this quote recently, and it struck a chord. We hear so much about the benefits of living in the moment and being present now that it is perhaps easy to forget the wisdom that lies in reflection and contemplation. Spiritual traditions all involve a sense of this space to be still and quiet, and to be with ourselves right here, right now. What comes up when we do is often about the past, our past, our collective past, the realities of human experience...in many ways the past is very much with us. If you think about it, the only time we can experience the past from is now, as now is all we have.
I notice in both mediation and life generally that the patterns of the past are with me. Sometimes I am repeating them, unaware. Sometimes I am noticing them, and able to reflect on what is good to do. Sometimes I notice their absence, and this may be a matter for celebration, or for regret.
Our system continually offers us opportunities to heal. The wounds of the past will arise, as if asking, are you ready yet? Is it time to look at this now? Each time we cycle through a familiar pattern this is what is at play.
So, are you ready yet? Do you want to create space to remember then and there from the insight and grounding of here and now? If so, then psychotherapy may be for you.