"I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better."
- Maya Angelou
A simple statement by the late Maya Angelou that speaks volumes. Angelou was a formidable woman, who strove to better herself and evolve in each moment. This quote has inspired countless seekers to live their truths and expand beyond the limitations of their past knowledge.
Earlier today, a friend sent me this quote and I was taken back to my second yoga teacher training when one of my teachers, Kathy Ornish (KO), covered this exact topic, albiet with different language. She said, "you can't unlearn something once you've learned it." Once you've studied something, practiced it, and had a direct experience with a teaching, you are then a keeper of that flame; you are then responsible for it.
I love this quote because it activates the part of my consciousness that holds myself accountable to my dreams, ambitions, and goals. This "parenting-self", as I've come to refer to it, compassionately keeps me on my path and reminds me in each moment of the bigger-picture view of my life. This quote also suggests that we forgive ourselves for our past ignorances. We can look back at an experience, see what went wrong, hold ourselves in compassion for our lack of knowledge, and then forgive ourselves for our unknowing. Because of this compassion and since we have lived through such experiences, we are now responisible to not repeat those same actions.
In the end, it all boils down to self-accountablility. Are you holding yourself accounable to what you know in your heart and mind to be true?