Gratitude and Forgiving – keys to achieve Peace & Harmony
The creation seems to have chosen the right person to carry out its plans. Indeed there have been several persons in our life who appeared at right time at right place, and helped us in various ways though they were completely unknown to us. If we take a deeper look we will realize that many times things just kept happening to us without our willingness or expecting them. We can think or assume that as if we are borne along as if by some higher force.
Some people may attribute these events to destiny, others to providence, still others to coincidence or synchronicity etc. A deeper look makes us realize that life is too intelligent to be arbitrary and governed by chance. Each and every thing that happens in life with us seems to have its own deep, hidden significance. The whole of this life and everything in it is a journey of self-discovery, self-realization, and self-fulfillment. Whether we can see it or not, every moment leads up to goal.
What is forgiveness?
David Augsburger has said: ‘Forgiveness is letting what was, be gone. What will be, come. What is now, be !’. It is the willingness accompanied with action plan to let go of hurtful past. It is releasing desire to hurt others and ourselves. It is a way to shift our consciousness, our perception from anger and hate to love and happiness. It is a conscious decision to choose not to suffer any more. It is letting go of all hopes for a better past. Forgiveness is a creative act that changes us from prisoners of the past to liberated people at peace with our memories. It means seeing divinity and love in everybody. It is a constant process not one time thing. You either totally forgive or you either do not forgive at all.
The emotions of hate and anger keep us away from our true nature i.e. peace, love and bliss. Forgiveness is a way to experience our love and divine bliss. It is a way to experience our divine connection with each other. Forgiveness means taking responsibility for our own happiness and peace. It means creating a shield against detrimental mental and emotional garbage; an etheric defense layer. It brings a dramatic energy shift. Forgiveness means changing your attitude about the past.
Why we need to forgive ?
Nobody likes to eat food which will be harmful for health. Yet we are not conscious and selective about mental food i.e. our thoughts and feelings which are much more powerful than the physical food. We know that mind and body are one and therefore if we are holding some negative feelings, thoughts and emotions, we are definitely going to pay the price. What other wanted to do, he has done and it cannot be changed. It is now our choice how to REACT ? We can either choose anger, feelings of hatred and negative emotions or we can take it positively to feel happy and get on with life growing as ever.
Forgiveness is one of the greatest tools to heal heart wounds. When we hold onto our anger to punish others, we actually confine ourselves. Thoughts and emotions of anger and hate seriously affect heart and harm it. They bolster our ego; interfere with our inner peace and joy. They separate us from each other and from our divine connection with each other. Forgiveness gives us peace of mind, happiness and shifts our consciousness. Grief vanishes and is replaced by love.
Furthermore, it is natural for human to make mistakes; we all can be hurtful or selfish. Realize that making mistakes is just a part of the learning process. Forgiveness gives you the capacity to deal with bad tempered or otherwise say difficult people with patience and equanimity. Forgiving others releases anger and forgiving yourself releases emotions of guilt from your mind, body and soul system. Forgiveness can even lead to feelings of understanding, empathy and compassion for the one who hurt you.
Un- forgiveness is just another game that mind love to play all the time. It gives strength to the mind and sow seeds for new games. True seekers must understand that un -forgiveness keeps you attached to past incidents, and that whenever you cling to past grievances, you condemn yourself to darkness. What we need to forgive in others may be something in ourselves that we have hidden from our awareness. Realize that to not forgive is a decision to suffer more.
“To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you.” by: Lewis B. Smedes
We must be aware that our past is ruining our present. We must release past hooks, hooks to past relationship and past events in order to make a better future and enjoy present completely. The past is gone and future is shaped by our current thinking. Forgiveness is a path to build healthy love relationships with your spouse and with your family now.
Forgiveness helps in building healthy self-esteem. It frees us from any guilt or negative emotion we have against us. We should forgive others because until we forgive them we cannot forgive ourselves. If we demand perfection in something like in job or relationship, we will demand the same from ourselves too.
Whom you may need to forgive
Some closest people like spouse, ex-spouse, children, parents, past relationships and close relatives. The wound and pain they gave may be really deep hidden in your heart. Yourself; we may have done or are doing something that hurts others or yourselves. You find yourself a failure at work place and relationship. Unexpected events, luck and mis-happening due to strangers etc. It may be possible even that you need to forgive somebody who has died.
What forgiveness is not
The concept of forgiveness may be rather confusing to newbie. Understand that there is a difference between acceptance and forgiveness. Forgiving others does not mean that you agree or accept what others have done to you instead, it means releasing harmful feelings and emotions from you mind-body system. It has got nothing to do with other but with yourself. In fact, the person you are forgiving need not change or even may not change at all. Sometimes it is really difficult to conclude, therefore leave this holy job for himself and God.
Forgiveness does not mean becoming emotionless in regard to that event; it means giving up the attachment to the painful emotions.
The process of forgiveness happens in mental space. Forgiveness means realizing that the real jail is in our minds when we are imbued with detrimental emotions and feelings. Forgiveness is a process of healing our own mind and body. It is our willingness to change our thought pattern and perception.
Forgiveness subdues ego
The ego is the biggest hurdle in the path of forgiveness. In-fact some people do not forgive because their ego tells them to become a faultfinder, in order to ensure that they are always right and other is always wrong. It is out of their ego that they think, when thing go wrong, the only reasonable thing to do is to find someone or some situation to blame instead realizing their own mistake and forgive themselves. Understand that the whole ego system is based on negatives like fear, anger, blame, uncertainty, hate, avarice and guilt etc.
It is the mind, the ego that views mistakes as sins that should never be forgotten. Carefully observe that by not forgiving the mind cleverly keep us attached to past and therefore we lose our awareness about present. It is ego that tells that if you forgive then that person may do the same thing again with you or if you forgive, it reflects that you are weak. Thoughts of revenge bolster ego.
By consistently practicing forgiveness, the ego will eventually lose its power over you. Then forgiveness will not be something we have to do, but something naturally flowing through us. Sir Thomas Fuller has said that ” He that cannot forgive others breaks the bridge over which he must pass himself; for every man has need to be forgiven.” To subdue ego we must never forget the three powerful resources always available to us: love, prayer, and forgiveness.
Trying to be perfectionist or expecting others to be same is an expression of ego. Understand that if you try to be perfectionist you will expect the same from others and vice-versa. Understand that perfection does exist in long term as the world is ever changing. You may be perfect for now for example in doing a particular job, but tomorrow you will have to update yourself as the job now demands some more things. With this understanding when we practice forgiveness, acceptance and love, ego eventually get diminished.
Forgiveness and biology
When we replace negative thoughts and feelings with positive once our front brain, the cortex which is said to be the seat of rational thought is found to be active. Our reactions to hurt, disrespect, stress, and emotional trauma are stored in the limbic brain. These detrimental stuffs in course of time starts affecting our physical body without our awareness. The researches on brain-wave have proved that people who meditate can release these detrimental feelings during their meditative state. Change your thought, change your life.