Many viewing this picture will recognize Simba, the crown prince in the box-office hit, The Lion King. But during part of the film, Simba doesn't recognize himself. In fact, he forgets who he really is.
This is one of the most poignant parts of the story, and maybe one we can all identify with. Simba is loveable, colorful, and often distracted from his path by others.
I often forget who I really am, also. I don't mean in terms of impending Alzheimer's, but more in terms of forgetting my spiritual essence. I get lost in needing to be right, solving problems (trying to do it on my own, of course), and rehashing conflict rather than letting it go.
The first lesson in Ho'oponopono is learning who we really are, though: a perfect creation of God. All is well with this until we start heaping tangled-up memories on top. In fact in Ho'oponopono, the main goal of life is to experience who we really are through taking 100% responsibility and cleaning with whatever data shows up. Even though this cleaning leads to "peace beyond all understanding," it's a constant struggle for most of us.
In The Lion King Simba's father, King Mufasa, has been killed by his treacherous brother Scar. Simba is sent out into the wilderness to die . . . but is revived and befriended by new companions, a warthog and a meerkat. They live by the creed of "Don't worry, be happy" ("Hakuna matata").
It's an okay respite for a time, but Scar is letting the land go to ruin -- and the Pride Nation almost becomes extinct after years of wandering in the desert.
Guided by his mystical gourd, the baboon shaman Rafiki decides to search for Simba. He finds him hanging out with his happy-go-lucky pals.
"I know your father," says Rafiki.
Simba: "I hate to tell you this, but he died, a long time ago."
Rafiki: "Nope! Wrong again! Ha ha! He's alive! And I'll show him to you! You follow old Rafiki, he knows the way! Come on!"
Peering in a waterhole, Simba meets himself . . .
"You have forgotten who you are, and so have forgotten me," says the Father. "Look inside yourself, Simba. You are more than what you have become. You must take your place in the Circle of Life. Remember who you are . . . " and the apparition fades.
Such a powerful scene, and such a powerful reminder for all of us. Is this apparition only the ghost of Mufasa, Simba's earthly father, or does this reach deeper in us?
There is a circle of life that holds us all, and in which we each have a part. In Ho'oponopono, Who We Really Are calls to us when we listen. When Simba discovers his true identity, he accepts his rightful place in this circle -- with all the responsibility and fulfilment it entails.
As we clean in Ho'oponopono, we can be closer and closer to the "zero" point from which we come. We can feel greater and greater peace as we are inspired to move forward along our path, acting as guided. When we don't forget, that is.
"This is the facing of self: the looking within -- the reflection in the mirror -- this honest looking of self with no excuse to ego or pride -- that bare nakedness of ridding all layers of clothing which hide the true self from self.
Look within, peel layer by layerall the accumulations of egos and lifetimes that are there to be seen.
See the reflection in the mirror, and as we look within, we will slowly see the image change: for as the reflection of self changes, so the physical, mental, and spiritual shall evolve . . . . why is such a thing so? There is a reason: to look within to release and free the essence which is us. Remove all the confines of each and set firmly on the path. Peace."
Are we going to look with our eyes, or through them? What kind of vision will we carry inside while looking? Our choice makes all the difference in the world. Morrnah was a wise woman, and so was Rafiki the baboon shaman in the Lion King. He reminded Simba to look harder . . . which he did until he saw.
The Father is in all of us, waiting for us to remember.
Peace Begins with Me,