The ability to forgive and forget

The ability to forgive and forget

People across the globe, from all cultures and traditions, embrace love and forgiveness in daily life as these values are universally viewed as central to the fabric of humanity.

But, is it that easy to forgive as it sounds to be? The ability to forgive others depends on how honest we are with ourselves. In the past, we have all acted wrongly, either because of not knowing what is right, or out of fear or misunderstanding. Most of us regret many things that we have said or done in the past. With time and knowledge we realise what is right and begin to make amends, with which the whole process of forgiveness starts within us. If this process is to progress, we have to forgive others. We cannot condemn others and excuse ourselves.

The power to forgive comes from compassion. Forgiveness dissolves the compulsive need to prove ourselves right. It removes the indignation we feel at imagined injustice. If we do not learn to forgive, resentment will poison us. When we do not forgive, we carry double the burden, both of resentful thoughts of others’ injustice and hidden reality of our own injustice. Forgiveness releases us from these bitter emotions.

Forgiveness means to compassionately and peacefully move forward with what is good, towards what is better. Forgiveness melts the hardness of other’s heart. Our forgiveness, at first, may puzzle them. People may even think of us as naive, but eventually they will appreciate and esteem this supreme act of our kindness. To forgive and forget is love in action. But we must learn to forgive ourselves, as well as others.
Otherwise, the process of releasing this burden neither begins nor progresses.

Forgiving ourselves means letting go of the past and not making the same mistakes again and again; not inventing convenient ways to excuse ourselves. Remember, a person who has hardened his own heart against others cannot feel even God’s forgiveness and compassion. Hence If we want to be forgiven, then we must be willing to forgive first. The one who forgives first not only proves his justice, but especially proves his love.