It took me a long time to realize that forgiveness is not for the person you are forgiving as much as it is for you, the forgiver. There is an expression, holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the person you are angry at to die…
Many years ago I was introduced to a forgiveness prayer called the Ho’ oponopono, and it truly changed my life. There was an incident, the details of which escape me at this moment, involving a family member which left me enraged. I had nowhere to turn to vent, it was late in the evening and the other people at home were involved in a way that I could not burden them with my feelings. I had been at a spiritual coaching workshop just a few months earlier and had learned this forgiveness prayer, so I went in my room, closed the door and started reciting the words in my head. I was not believing any of it, but I persisted because I saw no other option, and the pain of what I was feeling was enough to motivate me (pain has a way of doing that!).
It took about 15 minutes, but eventually, I drifted into a meditative state. I felt a calm and sense of ease flow through my body as the anger dissipated and eventually, I fell into a deep restful sleep. The interesting part was that the next morning when we all got up, the energy had shifted. I was calm and my family member who was at the other end of my ire was also calm, as if nothing had happened. It was a remarkable transformation and inspired me to explore this ancient prayer further.
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