Forgiveness is essential for real progress in spiritual growth. Unfortunately, the movies coming out today sort of leave this out. Don’t get me wrong I love ???The Secret??? and ???What the bleep do we know????, however; folks out there who are holding on to long-held regrets and remorse will have a very hard time making use of these great ideas if they don’t first learn how to let go of the past. In other words, people need to learn how to forgive.
You will get bored by my disclaimers, so maybe I will mark them in the future for folks that have already read them. I don’t claim to be telling the objective truth. I am merely pointing out what I believe to be the truth from my persecutive. Also, I don’t claim any level of expertise or wisdom on any topics, as I have no degrees or credentials on any of these topics. So please take everything I say as advice from a friend and of course with a grain of salt because what the hell do I know.
Why Should I forgive others for wronging me?
Dr. Phil might say that you should forgive them for you, and not them. They may not deserve your forgiveness, however; may not even know or care that you holding a grudge. So if you forgive them to make yourself feel better and grow then that’s a great reason. This one is easy to fake. Where you tell yourself that you have forgiven a person of a transgression for YOU, but you actually haven’t and are still holding a grudge. Forgiveness has to feel true or you will call yourself on it.
If you are Christian and believe in his teachings, then you can take from his example. He forgave the roman solider that stabbed him while he was hanging on the cross. Some Christians get confused by the bible because the new testament and the old testament give different advice. In the old testament, ???An eye for an eye??? was the rule of thumb. But Jesus said to love and forgive your enemies. Remember, we are forgiving others for the benefit of ourselves, not the transgressor.
A Course in Miracles (ACIM) says that if someone ???sins??? against you, something you thought about them (anger, fear, hate, or other low-energy emotion) was just returned to you through them. So, since you caused the transgression with your own low energy the other person isn’t responsible. You should forgive yourself, take responsibility for your thoughts and actions and work on holding the high-energy emotions (love, kindness, compassion) in your mind.
How can I learn to forgive myself?
Dealing with your past is really an important first step in moving forward to higher levels of consciousness. All of the ???sins??? that you are holding against yourself work to color your reality everyday. In many ways, once you realize that the past doesn’t exist except as a dream that you keep referring to ???remind??? you that you don’t deserve to be a winner. This is a subject that most people can deal with by consciously searching their past and finding those past events that still hold power over them. Dr Phil covered this topic in his book ???Self Matters??? and I think almost anyone would be helped by reading his book and doing the exercises to teach yourself to forgive yourself. Some folks may need more help and I recommend seeking professional help.
ACIM is real big on teaching that we are 100% responsibility for everything is our lives. The logic goes something like this (please forgive me if I mess this up):
- We live in a world of perception. This world is literally an illusion.
- llusions have no affect on what is real.
- What is real is beyond perception.
So, if you follow this logic, ???sin??? as we have to come to understand it doesn’t exist. Murder is not real, because death is not real. No, this doesn’t mean that I think everyone should run and kill people! But , doing the worst thing you can imagine is still forgivable by the universe because this world is only illusions created by our minds and does not affect reality. ???Sin???, then is referred to as an error that merely requires correction. It’s not ???bad??? or ???evil??? and cannot condemn you, but merely means that the thought/deed is moving you out of alignment with God.
Two paragraphs to try to sum up a key idea from the ACIM doesn’t really work, but if I perked your interest enough, maybe you might be motivated to check out the book and see if it helps you.
How can I forgive myself if I have done something really bad?
This all comes down to what you choose believe. I forgive you of all your sins. You don’t know me, but maybe that might help a little bit. Forgiving ourselves might be more difficult than forgiving others. The key issue to me is whether or not God will forgive me. This is one of the best parts about the teachings of Jesus, because he would forgive all sins. I was always attracted by that lesson. I was turned off by the ???Fire and brimstone??? based lessons, because I thought that the bible or God was trying to scare me into compliance and the lessons of Jesus seemed to contradict that idea.
If you believe that Jesus and Yooper will forgive you all of your ???sins???, then maybe that’s enough for you to forgive yourself, now you might ask yourself:
How can I get others to forgive me?
If you truly believe that you ???sinned??? against another, then you should, for yourself and for the other person (but more for yourself) somehow make amends. Apologize, say your sorry or write a letter. Do nice and kind things for them. Admit to them and yourself that you made a mistake and that you hurt them and you seek their forgiveness.
If the other person, will not forgive you, make peace with yourself that you did your level best to make your mistake right, forgive yourself, and move on. Their forgiveness is not required for you to forgive yourself…the Universe, Yooper, and Jesus forgave you already, if you add that all up, that’s so much forgiveness you don’t need theirs :-).
I really want to hear a lot of comments on this topic, because it seems to me that this step open a lot of doors for mean towards spiritual growth. If you want me to answer questions or be more specific or write more about forgiveness, please let me know and I will do my best to help you.
Thanks for reading to the end.