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  • Writer's pictureDr. Angel

Forgiveness

Updated: May 19, 2023

One of the hardest and yet one of the most liberating experiences is the act of forgiveness. Some people have a hard time forgiving because of the pain and disappointment they felt as they felt the undesired event. They hold on to these negative feelings so tightly as if this will redeem them of their own mistakes or make someone else understand how hurtful their behavior was. And it is very understandable that we want justice to happen and see a fair world where people receive some kind of consequence for their actions.


But - a huge BUT - the act of forgiving doesn’t mean we are ignoring someone’s mistake. Quite the opposite, we are releasing our own anger and pain that came out as a result of their actions. When we hold a grudge and resentment towards someone or even ourselves for making a “mistake”, we are imprisoning our feelings into a long, frustrating and sad journey. We are blocking ourselves from being truly happy.


The act of forgiveness is an act of self-love, actually. For instance, I had an aunt that was so resentful towards her daughter-in-law. They used to have so many fights and disagreements while her son was suffering from cancer. She could never let go of their differences, even after her son died. Her anger built up so much over the years that it resulted in her developing cancer in her liver and eventually dying from it. Feelings are very powerful and they can be manifested in our body depending on what kind of feeling we generate on a daily basis.


A lot of people see forgiveness as a sign of weakness. Thinking that “if I forgive this person, then they will not learn their lesson and will continue to repeat the wrongful act”. The misconception here is not that you are forgiving them in order to allow them to repeat it; you are forgiving them to release you from the pain. You can forgive them and wish them nothing but well and healing, and then stay away from them if they have not learned their lesson. You also need to forgive yourself, as you probably are self-criticising, thinking ‘how did I let this happen to me?’. It is extremely important to understand that every moment on Earth is a blessing. A powerful lesson that aids us in our spiritual growth.


Looking from the spirituality perspective, one of the reasons why we come to Earth is to clear karma from our past lives. Sometimes, the clearing of the karma relies specifically on the person returning the same wrongful act that we once committed to them during our past lives. However, we have no idea since our spirits tend to forget our past lives once we enter the body given on this specific journey. Whenever we show compassion and forgiveness, we are breaking the cycle of revenge and long-lasting feud. The right thing to say or at least mention in your mind is the following:

“Please forgive me for any damage I have done in my past life towards you, and I forgive you for the actions you have done against me in this life, I wish you nothing but love and blessings.”

It is a powerful message that releases you from keeping your mind and soul in a bitter space. It allows you to move forward and focus on finding inner peace, and it actually clears your wounds and chances of receiving such painful experiences ever again. But when we stick to being unforgiving, we constantly think about the wrongful act. This leads us to actually attract more of it and, thus, keep us in a loop of sadness and endless fights.


All the wise spiritual beings agree on it! You should try it and see how good it feels to let go of revenge, anger or resentment towards anyone. All human beings are capable of forgiveness. It really doesn’t matter what kind of religion you practice, all of them preach the same thing.


Jesus said “And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”

Buddha said, “Why should I forgive you when you have done nothing wrong?” … Compassion is not saying, “I forgive you.” Your forgiveness should be such that the person who is forgiven, does not even know that you are forgiving them. They should not even feel guilty about their mistake. This is real compassion.

In Hindu Dharma, not only should one forgive others, but one must also seek forgiveness if one has wronged someone else.


In Islam, the prophet (PBUH) mentions “Be merciful to others and you will receive mercy. Forgive others and Allah will forgive you” (Musnad Ahmad). If we forgive others then Allah will forgive us so try to be kind and forgiving so that we can get kindness, love, and forgiveness from Allah Almighty.


Therefore, forgiveness is an act of strength and wisdom, as it allows you to keep your inner peace and quiet down your ego (pride). It is a powerful act of self-love. But remember, with forgiveness you can always set healthy boundaries to make sure that the other person won’t commit the same act -especially if they have not repented for their behavior. In the end, it really is about you letting go of the past and moving forward to the next moment that could potentially be a happy experience.

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