I must admit that the subject of forgiveness has probably been the most challenging on my journey of spiritual enlightenment. In the past I had mastered the ability to hold a grudge. Passive-aggressive could have been my middle name. I have never been comfortable with conflict, so even when I was upset with someone, I wouldn’t come straight out and say something about what was bothering me. Instead, I would increase my sarcasm and complain to anyone who would listen (except the person I actually had an issue with).
Needless to say, this didn’t solve anything, rather it made what started out as minor problems, snowball into roof-raising disagreements, tears and profanity free of charge. When I started to read various books on enlightenment and achieving happiness, they all had the importance of forgiveness as a common theme. While I understood the importance of letting go, I just didn’t know how to move on…
I really had to think about what holding a grudge was doing for me. The reality was, it wasn’t benefiting me in the least. The hardest people to forgive are the ones that are most important to you. If you didn’t care about them, their actions would be of no significance to you. Once I understood that I was actually hurting myself, I became more open to learning how to forgive. Regardless of what kind of relationship would result, I had to let go of the resentment and move on. Whatever happened was in the past and if I want a healthy, balanced life, I needed to let go and move on.
Forgiveness isn’t an overnight process, it takes time. If you want to maintain a relationship with the person in question, then work needs to be done on rebuilding the trust and focusing on the good things and not the incident(s) that caused the conflict. As I continue to work on this in my own life, I am encouraged by what I see happening. As I learn to let go and focus my energy on the reasons why I want to heal the relationship, I see the people in my life making an effort as well. It has lifted such a weight off my shoulders and has allowed me to continue to let amazing things flow into my life. ♥
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