How The Power of Forgiveness Will Set You Free

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There Are No Accidents In A Purposeful Universe

“To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you.” — Lewis B. Smedes

Forgiveness does not erase the past, but looks upon it with renewed compassion. To withhold forgiveness keeps alive emotions of hurt, anger and blame which discolour our perception of life. To forgive, we must avoid ruminating on thoughts of being wronged. Rather, we trust the power of forgiveness to heal the hurt and pain. By holding on to pain and resentment, we suffer because the sorrow is intensified to keep it alive. Despite people’s perceptions that forgiveness means to forget, its motive is imbued in self-forgiveness and the role we play to co-create the circumstances. This does not mean you consented to what transpired. Given your involvement, even as a victim, you choose to forgive yourself regardless of the role you played.

Forgiveness means to let go of hatred, instead of allowing it to eat at you. For example, what is your relationship with forgiveness? Have you been wrong against and found it in your heart to forgive the other person/s? Remarkably, there’s a close link between negative emotions and illness, documented over the past decade by notable doctors. Toxic and destructive emotions have the potential to activate certain diseases if we don’t attend to our emotional wellbeing. I acknowledge it is difficult to forgive a perpetrator for wrongdoing and goes against our moral code. Yet, if we consider it from a greater perspective, forgiveness is associated with our emotional welfare, not granting the other person pardon.

Consider the words of my mentor and acclaimed spiritual author Dennis Merritt Jones who writes in Your Redefining Moments: Becoming Who You Were Born to Be: “At the end of the day, forgiveness is really not for the other person’s benefit at all — it’s for our own. Regardless of how illogical it may seem at times, it is through unconditional forgiveness that we surrender the past to the past and enter the present, freeing ourselves to stand in the infinite Light that knows how to heal our deepest and most painful wounds.” I grew up with a strained relationship with my father and carried resentment towards my emotional mishandling for a long time. Yet, I experienced a profound shift when I forgave him and myself. I saw the greater lesson of my experiences which were guiding me towards self-love. It was brought about through a change in awareness that undermined my limiting beliefs: “What if my relationship with my father was perfectly orchestrated to teach me self-love?” From that day, I realised there are no accidents in a purposeful universe, only our perceptions that distort the truth.

Forgive The Part Of You That Holds On To Resentment
“Forgiveness does not change the past, but it does enlarge the future.” — Paul Boese

Anger and resentment keeps us stuck in the past replaying disempowering emotions, instead of living in the present moment. People wish for a happier life yet are reluctant to let go of toxic emotions and believe forgiving their perpetrator erases the past. This is the furthest from the truth. From a spiritual perspective, the ego feeds off fear and convinces us we were wronged. It holds on to anger and resentment to keep the pain alive. Conversely, love asserts the opposing view: forgiveness, peace and joy. It was the late Dr. Wayne Dyer who said: “You can be happy or you can be right, but you can’t be both.” We must let go of negative emotions to discover peace and happiness because the two cannot coexist. Have you noticed how much energy it requires to hold on to anger? In contrast, forgiveness lightens the load and frees you to enjoy life unbound by the weight of resentment.

Irrespective of the circumstances, we should respond to the past with compassion, not replay what took place. Confucius said: “The more you know yourself, the more you forgive yourself.” Therefore, we should choose empowering emotions if we wish to live a fulfilling life. Anger and resentment is a call for self-love since what we crave is to be loved and appreciated. Given our motive, we must let go of that which stands in our way, and forgiveness is the bridge that leads us there. We look into our hearts and forgive ourselves for being co-conspirators in the experience. A co-conspirator is identified as someone involved in the experience instead of consenting to it. “Rather than forgiving the perpetrator or minimizing the intensity of the misdeed, you recover the empowerment and self-worthiness you thought had been taken from you,” writes neuropsychologist Mario Martinez in The MindBody Code. We forgive the part of us that holds on to resentment in order to transform destructive emotions and rise above fear.

It was the late psychiatrist and consciousness researcher Dr. David Hawkins who showed that Fear has a lower consciousness level, in contrast to Love which registers higher. Fear registers as 100 on a logarithmic scale, while Love registers as 500. The energy of Love is calibrated higher and capable of disentangling lower emotional states. When faced with holding on to anger and resentment, choose to forgive yourself and others. Each time you experience fear, choose forgiveness over hatred. It is through the power of forgiveness that we heal ourselves which leads to inner freedom. By exposing our wounds to the Light we heal our suffering and invite Love to transform our anguish. In that act of clemency we are reunited with the wholeness of who we are.

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