By Judith E. Lipson, M.A., LPC
Physician, Dr. Ira Byock says, “Many people confuse forgiveness with exoneration. Forgiveness does not excuse someone from doing something wrong. Instead, forgiveness accepts the past as it was, embraces the present, and faces the future. Forgiveness is a strategy for you to become free of emotional baggage.”
Forgiveness is acceptance. A realization that what you wish was different in your past will never be. When you free yourself from the wishes of what wasn’t (and therefore can’t be), you open yourself to a peace-filled present, and to all the possibilities of your future. Forgiveness is empowerment. It means that you stop seeing yourself as the victim and take your power back.
John Holland continues. “Forgiveness doesn’t necessarily mean releasing the person from responsibility of their past actions. It’s a matter of releasing the anguish that your soul is carrying around with it. Whether they deserve to be forgiven or not, just remember that you’re doing it for yourself.”
If you have been harmed by another I recommend that you read Emotion: Anger is Not a Primary One to deal with any anger from this situation. Next, shift the situation energetically:
Relax into a quiet meditative space and look at the beautiful being that you are without fear and resentment. “I fill myself with Light. May I remember again, that sense of perfect safety that I have known. May I feel again the love and security that is mine. May I regain, with peace and love, the Knowing that my Highest Wisdom understands about this situation or individual. I ask that I continue to connect with my Highest Self and my Guides so that I may continue to experience the world with love, security and peace. I release all ways that this old situation defined me, and I move into my future in peace.”
Forgiveness doesn’t just pertain to others. Forgiving the self is an important aspect of becoming Who You Really Are. You have played many roles. You have recognized the times that you were victim. You are learning to acknowledge how you are a master. Seeing that you have also been the perpetrator may be harder to reconcile. Don’t shy away from any of this. Forgiveness – as – acceptance means acceptance (and therefore forgiveness) of ALL of your aspects. Author Lewis B. Smedes said: “To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you.” So I recommend that you repeat the exercise above to shift and release any ways that you are imprisoning yourself.
In light of the rampant fear and hate in our society, I offer this more global technique for forgiveness as well:
Breathe gently and fully into your heart, and feel it expand. Envelop your loved ones with peace and good will. Now expand those feelings, and your heart energy, to reach out to your community, filling and surrounding it with love and good will. Expand it outwards with the intention of including groups that had been formerly described as “different” – be it race, gender, ethnicity, religion, etc. Connect now with the individuals that create these groups and see them as individuals. Recognize them now as not much different than yourself. See into their Essence and see their differences decrease further. If you wish, select an individual who represents a different culture. See the person before you and envelop them in Light. Allow your heart energy to approach and envelop the person. (Feel free to recognize your separateness if you wish.) See within to their Essence. Recognize that just as you have encountered personal challenges, they have as well. Allow for the greatness of all that they were to be to be visible to you, and honor that space within them. Breathe gently, filling yourself and the planet with peace. When you feel this is complete, take a purposeful breath and bring your awareness back to your body. See yourself in this room in the clothes that you chose to wear today. Let your breath bring awareness to your body, wiggle your fingers and toes, and open your eyes.
These exercises can be done anytime, anywhere, and as frequently as you wish. Thank you for helping to bring love, understanding and peace to your personal and global community. If you have any questions about these processes or the concepts herein, don’t hesitate to reach out to me.
Judy Lipson is a Licensed Professional Counselor and educational strategist in West Bloomfield, MI. She helps clients of all ages who have learning difficulties; work or school related anxiety; ADHD; Asperger’s Syndrome or Autism Spectrum Disorders; and those who wish to Remember and Become Who You Really Are. Contact Judy at 248.568.8665 and firstname.lastname@example.org, and visit www. SpiralWisdom.net for more information.
This article was published in Eydis Magazine December 2015, and MY authentic Life Magazine July 2017