In last week’s blog, we talked about the need to forgive everyone, including people who have hurt us deeply. In this message, we discuss a simple forgiveness process that can be practiced all the time and has the infinite potential to heal everyone and everything, beginning with you. Since the process that is described at the end of the blog is exquisitely simple, the following points are intended to help you to open your mind and heart to the blessings of forgiveness:
Honor Your Feelings. Express your anger and resentment by beginning with a catharsis. Trying to forgive someone without first venting your feelings of pain is like trying to seal a potential volcanic eruption with a band-aid. There is usually a great deal of energy that needs to be released before the wound can heal. Some constructive ways you can do this are to: Give yourself permission to cry or even scream (best done in the car or somewhere where no one else can hear you!), talk with someone who is a compassionate listener, write your feelings down on paper, or engage in physical exercise. It is easy to stay stuck in this stage of expressing your feelings, so be sure to commit yourself to moving on to the next step of taking responsibility.
Take responsibility for the part that you have played in creating the situation. This is probably the most self-empowering step in the process of forgiveness. Since our thoughts create our reality, it is important that you remember that you have played a role in the creation of every experience you have ever had. By taking responsibility for your part, you are no longer a victim. If you created it, you can also change it!
Let go the need to judge who is “right” and who is “wrong.” Chances are that each person involved is absolutely certain he or she is right. This is why there is a conflict in the first place! Continuing to think this way only perpetuates more pain and suffering and resolves nothing.
Forgive yourself. You can only do for another that which you can do for yourself. This is truly an act of self-love. You are not forgiving yourself for being “wrong.” You are forgiving yourself for making choices that were not aligned with your personal values and self-respect. You are also forgiving yourself for continuing to punish yourself by constantly re-living painful memories.
See the Other Person’s Point of View – Remember that forgiveness is a two-way street. We need to also ask for forgiveness for our own transgressions against others. It is much easier to remember who has hurt us; yet many times the best way to move away from the self-perception of being an innocent victim is to realize that we have also hurt other people.
Be thankful for every experience. Every person you meet and every situation you have experienced is teaching you to be more whole. Our greatest lessons many times come through our most painful times. Choosing to be thankful for what you have learned from both the pleasant and unpleasant situations in life is the most effective way to move out of old pain behaviors. Gratitude is an emotion that sends out a frequency that attracts positive people and creates healthy situations.
Now, here is a shortcut that incorporates all of the above suggestions.
You can use this forgiveness process for every person and in every situation in your life. It is a derivation of an ancient Hawaiian healing process, H’oponopono, and is rooted in the intention of freeing one’s soul. You do not even need to be in the physical presence of someone whom you need to forgive. By merely focusing on the following thoughts, you are transmitting the energy of unconditional love.
A SIMPLE FORGIVENESS EXERCISE
1. I love myself and I forgive myself.
2. I take responsibility for the part that I have played in creating this situation.
3. Please forgive me for anything I have done to hurt you. (Imagine the person or people whom you need to forgive.)
4. Thank you for the lessons I have learned.
5. I love you! (This is not about human passionate love – it is the unconditional, neutral love of spirit that honors the soul of every living being. This is the part of the forgiveness exercise that has the magical power to heal everyone and everything in ways that transcend human understanding.)
Remember, it does not matter if you do not feel these statements when you begin this process. What you are doing is setting intentions, and intentions precede feelings. As you consistently continue to send out these thoughts, you will begin to feel what you are saying because you are working in harmony with universal love.
Forgiveness is a habit. Like all habits, the more you practice it, the easier it becomes. Be kind to yourself and stick with it. Because forgiveness is unconditional love, it has the infinite potential to transform everyone and everything.
YOU have the power to heal yourself and others by making the choice to forgive.
Love and Light
Click this link to order the downloadable audio meditation, “Free Yourself Through Forgiveness,” narrated by Sandra Brossman.