It might be the best gift you can give to yourself
Forgiving is tremendously powerful, but it is also one of the hardest things to do. Have you noticed that with yourself or people around you? Why is it so hard?
Because, when someone hurts us, we feel powerless, used, embarrassed, afraid, lost, worthless, ignored, furious, outraged, and so on, and our whole being suffers. And, what we want, is justice and apology. We don`t think about forgiving our perpetrator. It seems far from fair and entirely pointless, at least at a first glance.
In our lives, we all have faced injustice. Either as a single incident or worse, continuing abuse over long period of time. It could be anything, a fight with your friend who falsely accused you of wrongdoing, a boss who unjustifiably fired you, irresponsible spouse cheating on you, alcoholic parent beating you, bullying, threatening, rape, murder… we could go on and on.
When we go through physical, sexual, emotional, or mental violence, we 're only trying to survive first. Undoubtedly, all these traumas leave a deep and painful impact on our hearts and minds. They don't go away, particularly if we don't have the right counsel or help to process them correctly at the most vulnerable moment.
Too often, these assaults become an overwhelming reminder of the past. They affect our beliefs and they steer our actions in the wrong direction. They eventually change our view of ourselves and everything around us.
So, when the bad thing happens to us, it always creates a huge disruption to our energy. It throws us out of our natural state of well-being and inner peace. Traumas could haunt us with pain, guilt, shame, fear, and anger for many years to come.
If we don't deal with all these feelings and confront them constructively, we 're easily caught up in the victim's mindset. It's so much harder to pull out of such a position and move on.
As I check my clients' blockages, I clearly see how unresolved issues and resentment have been trapped in their energy and hindered healthy flow.
They impact their lives by causing unrest, unhealthy behavioral, emotional, and mental patterns, low self-confidence and self-esteem, inability to express their full potential, unhappy relationships, and even physical problems and discomfort as a result of long-lasting negative emotions and mindset.
Not only that, people who have not forgiven their offenders are still linked to them at the energy level with the invisible cord that binds them to that person. This bond is kept alive by their anger, their sadness, their resentment, their fear, etc. until they release all the negative emotions that link them to mutual experience.
The worst thing is that the guilty party on the other side may no longer remember them, have no idea of the pain he / she caused, do not care what happened, and proceed on with his / her life without a second thought.
As you can see it is important to forgive and you would be surprised that it is actually immensely liberating experience. But how to do it? How to find the strength to do it?
Many people are worried the offenders will get away with their actions if they let go of it. But we need to know that forgiving does not mean forgetting the wrongdoing or accepting it. Not at all.
Forgiveness is for us, and it benefits us, not the perpetrator.
It gives us peace of mind, and helps us to be happy again, and to crawl out of darkness when we let go, detach ourselves from the attacker on all levels, cut the cord that binds us to him / her, and release any negativity that pulls us down.
But first of all, we need to forgive ourselves. To embrace our responsibility and release any guilt or shame. From blaming ourselves for our actions and to forgive us for any wrong decisions we made. We need to accept the situations as important lessons we can learn from. We can't undo the past, but from now on we can choose how to see it and avoid poisoning our body and soul with destructive thoughts.
Two powerful techniques you can use as forgiveness rituals
You can always talk to those who hurt you to clear up the situation, to forgive and to reconcile, but many times this is not possible. Victims don't feel confident enough to question their abusers, they worry that it may not be a fruitful discussion, or it may not be physically feasible.
In such situations, when in your safe space at home, you can use on of these two techniques that will help you release negative feelings and forgive:
1. BURNING LETTER
Write a letter to your perpetrator that you would not send. Pour out your soul on the paper and write about your thoughts. Be as open and honest as you can, write down the specifics of how hurt you are. Say everything you'd like to say to a person who hurts you, without fear or restraint. Don't be afraid, nobody's going to see what you've written. Go and set it all down. Cry if you want to, let go of it. Out of your system. When you're done, burn the letter and let the water wash the ashes away. Fire is an element of clearing, of change and of transformation.
This is an old Hawaiian ritual of forgiveness that is very strong, but very easy to perform. It's based on four magic phrases. To understand it better, I suggest that you read more about it in Ulrich E. Dupree's little booklet Ho'oponopono. It looks easy, but you may find it difficult to do it in the beginning. I prefer to do it this way:
- Find a quiet spot and sit comfortably in the upright position.
- Close your eyes and have at least three deep breaths.
- Make an intention to connect in spirit with a person you would like to forgive and ask for guidance and protection.
- With your eyes closed, imagine this person in front of you and watch him or her with your inner eye, how he or she acts, how he or she behaves.
- Feel your heart open and say, in your mind, or loudly:
“I am sorry. Please forgive me. I love you. Thank you.”
Repeat this for as long as you think you need it. You can practice it for anyone with whom you have unresolved issues. I wish you all the best in practicing forgiveness, as it sets us free from burdens, we can't or don't want to carry any more.
As Dr. Martin Luther King said:
“Forgiveness is not a one-time thing. Forgiveness is a life-style.”
So, change your lifestyle.