Forgiveness & Gluten-Free Almond Butter Cookies April 11, 2014 • 0 Comments I am struggling with back pain due to a compromised area that didn’t do well with being seated on airplanes and hard seminar chairs for a week. I don’t think hoisting luggage up into the overhead bin helped either. The pain is interfering with my ability to do just about everything, including cleaning up after my dogs on the morning walk. It is the bending over or twisting that causes excruciating, take your breath away pain. The only way I can tidy up after them is by assuming a wide stance squat position and slowly lowering myself downward, which must look ridiculous, but I am using it as a meditation in how we contort ourselves to compensate for pain, both physically and emotionally, in a myriad of ways. One thing I can do without too much pain is bake cookies. I was inspired to do this today because I met a man last week who started a forgiveness project where he takes homemade chocolate chip cookies into a maximum security prison and offers them to hardened criminals. I asked him what was the most surprising thing he had learned about these men and he said that when you get beyond the frightening exterior, the fu*k you attitudes, tattoos and tough demeanor, they all have stories and broken hearts. Having always thought of these jailed criminals as the wasteland of society, he said it opened his own heart to a bigger landscape of understanding about humanity. He has no illusions about the work he does, noting that these men are lifers for the heinous crimes they have committed. But simply sharing a cookie with an inmate, without expectations of anything in return, has changed his life. And so I pondered this while making these cookies today: the power of forgiveness. Gluten-Free Almond Butter Cookies with Sea Salt adapted from It’s All Good 1 ½ c gluten-free flour (I used coconut) (¾ teaspoon xanthan gum, if the flour you are using doesn’t have it) ½ teaspoon fine sea salt 1 teaspoon baking powder 1 cup almond butter ¾ cup maple syrup 1 teaspoon vanilla Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl, whisk together flour, sea salt and baking powder. In another bowl whisk together the almond butter, maple syrup and vanilla. Combine ingredients of both bowls. The most important part of these cookies is to make them small and thin. Roll a tablespoon of dough into a ball and flatten it into a disc. Using a salt grinder, sprinkle sea salt over the cookies and then bake them for approximately ten minutes until golden brown. They are fabulous partnered with hot tea. And while enjoying them, ask yourself: Who can you forgive to set yourself free? “Forgiveness has nothing to do with absolving a criminal of his crime. It has everything to do with relieving oneself of the burden of being a victim–letting go of the pain and transforming oneself from victim to survivor.” C. R. Strahan -db Who is Dianna Bonny? Hi, my name is Dianna Bonny. It’s my mission to candidly share my journey with you. For me, it’s all about the healing: to create a radiant healing energy for others who have befallen a similar fate. Together, we can forge beautiful lives of belonging and connection. Thanks for joining me today! I look forward to hearing from you.