Since our childhood, we have always heard that we need to forgive, be it from our parents, teachers or books. But what is this forgiveness and why is it so important? Below, we outline seven important reasons why we as souls need to forgive.
1. Harbouring Resentments is simply not worth it: Tremendous amount of our personal energy supply is tied up in negative emotions such as anger, resentment, and hate. Why? Because it takes a lot of work, attention and energy to hold a grudge and stay angry. Energy follows thought, and if your intention is concentrated on harbouring old resentments, a good supply of your energy is tied up with maintaining those resentments. Some people have been angry for so long that they don’t even realize it. But it’s easy to tell when you energetically scan their aura: you feel heavy congestion and/or depletion of the front and back solar plexus and heart chakras. As per the science of Pranic Healing energetic congestion and/or depletion in the solar plexus and heart chakras are linked to diseases of the heart, hypertension and diabetes. Forgiveness will help you keep your energy cleaner and more plentiful.
2. For Good Health: Forgiveness leads to inner healing. It is well known that a large majority of physical ailments occur due to stress and negative emotions. As we let go of the toxic emotions and thoughts within us, the toxins and disease within the body are also removed and expelled. People who are suffering from severe or terminal ailments can be healed by forgiving and releasing the internal pain and anger.
3. For Loving and Harmonious Relationships: Relationships are an important part of our lives, be it with our parents, partner, family, friends, colleagues or society at large. As we get closer, it is easier to notice the other person’s small mistakes. We need to be practical – mistakes from both parties are a part and parcel of life. This is because that all souls are evolving and we all do stupid thing and make mistakes. Focusing on mistakes do not help the relationship. Hence, forgiveness becomes the key for a happy relationship.
4. For Rapid Spiritual Growth: Holding on to anger and grudges is like holding down a balloon with weights. We need to remove the emotional and psychological weights from us, to be able to fly spiritually. We must spiritually transcend.
5. To Attain Inner Peace: There are some of us who are holding on to pain from previous negative experiences in our relationships. As we forgive, it helps us let go of our past hurt, anger and resentment and we are able to rise above the inner pain and turmoil to attain inner peace. It’s quite similar to how a lotus flower rises out of the mud to bloom in its full glory. Forgiveness can be inner or outer. Sometimes, the situation may demand firmness or severity, but severity needs to be balanced with compassion and mercy. For example, if we see a person committing a serious crime, we need to report the person to the police to protect the society, but this does not mean that we need to be angry from within. One can be firm from outside, yet gentle from within. Inner Forgiveness is to be practiced for all, but outer forgiveness has to be done on a case-to-case basis.
6. For a Better Life: Forgiveness is one of the best ways to neutralize our past negative karma. As we forgive, we are forgiven from our past mistakes. This way, we are partially protected from poverty, illness and other difficulties of life. This is especially important if you are going through a bad phase in your life. No better way to ask for divine mercy than to be merciful to others… especially towards those who have hurt us.
7. To Let Go of Nasty People: If two people harbour negative feelings and resentment towards each other, an energy link is established between the two people. This energetic link often binds the two souls together for lifetimes, till it is released. Master often narrated a story about a young couple whose child was born with mental and physical deformities. They visited the famous seer, Edgar Cayce (who is sometimes known as the Sleeping Prophet). Cayce accessed their past life to see that the child had imprisoned and tortured them in their previous life, and was hence suffering in this life. The parents being subject to torture, hated and cursed him till the end of their lives. They vowed never to forgive the jailor. Hence, they were forced to be in a position where they had to love and care for the child. Anger and hatred binds two souls together. But guess what… it only takes one to break the link. If we do not want to be in a similar situation it is better that we forgive and forget.
Hence to summarize: not only is forgiveness the right thing to do… it is also the smart thing to do!
Now that we are aware of the importance of forgiving, it is clear that we need to put this to practice. But is it as easy as it sounds? The good news is that it can be, if we practice the following techniques diligently.
1. The Virtue of Loving Kindness and Non-Injury: In any relationship, the closer two people get, more are the chances of friction. The lubricant for this is love in thoughts, words and actions. As we practice a high degree of loving kindness,we can transform the relationship. When we practice non-injury, our tendencies to become angry or to lose patience are gradually eliminated. When external circumstances and people can no longer stir up our emotions, we can truly be peaceful and healthy. Loving-kindness and non-injury needs to be practiced towards self too. Whereas it is important to be aware of our shortcomings, excessive remorse and guilt need to be avoided since we tend to become what we meditate on. If we do not love ourselves, it is not possible to love others. Hence, it is extremely essential to practice Inner Reflection and Firm Resolution and other self-purification techniques to eliminate these weaknesses.
2. Blessing : One of the simplest ways of improving or healing a relationship is by blessing. First, we make a list of the people who have hurt us or who we do not share a good relationship with. One by one, we need to bless these people with all the qualities which they may require like love, peace, compassion, physical and emotional healing, prosperity and abundance, and spiritual development.
3. Affirmation for Forgiveness: Begin by visualizing the person in front of you. Then you may silently say:
“Namaste! You are forgiven. The Matter is forgotten. God’s love be with you. May God’s peace be with you. Go in peace.”
This needs to be repeated 7 times for 7 days (or longer). Do note that we need to first forgive other people before we ask for forgiveness from others. Please also refer to this article on Forgiveness Affirmations].
4. Meditation on Twin Hearts: Practicing the Meditation on Twin Hearts is one of the simplest and most effective ways of leading a balanced life. By practicing this meditation regularly, one’s inner negative thoughts and emotions are transmuted to higher energies of love, joy and peace. Before we replace the qualities of hatred, sorrow and anger with love, joy and peace on the earth, these energies first pass through us. Thus, the world within us is transformed before we try to transform the world outside. You may read about a specific story of a woman who used Meditation on the Twin Hearts to save her marriage here.
5. The Golden Rule: The Golden Rule is the tool to create our future. It has two sides – yang and yin; active and passive. The Yang Golden Rule states that we should do to others what we want them to do to us. If we want others to love and respect us, we need to love and respect them. The Yin Golden Rule states that we must avoid doing to others what we do not want them to do to us. If we do not want others to be harsh or excessively criticize us, we must avoid cruelty and harshness, and refrain from excessive mental criticism. So putting this into proper context: none of us are perfect, and we have all made mistakes and have done dumb things. If you want to be forgiven for your own actions, then the smart thing is to first forgive others. The Golden Rule is simple in its meaning, yet profound in its application. Before any thought, speech or action that we produce, if we just think about the Golden Rule and proceed accordingly, our lives will be transformed.
Though these techniques sound very simple, they are extremely potent. Let us put these to practice immediately. May we forgive ourselves and others completely so there comes a day when there is no need to forgive anymore; because ‘to Err Is Human…to Forgive Is Divine’.