When we think of the normal definition of forgiveness, we have been taught that we need to somehow rise above and forgive the wrongdoer in order to find peace. I believe in a second way of forgiving, one that is more healing, helpful, and attainable. The type of forgiveness I’m writing about is for those of us who carry guilt over any part we played in a situation — even if we don’t realize we are carrying guilt. Even if we were the victims.
This type of forgiveness is not about giving the wrongdoer or situation a pass as if it never happened. It also doesn’t mean reaching out to the person we may have been told to forgive, which can be destructive if we’re struggling to forgive someone who may not yet deserve it. Instead, we are checking in with ourselves to determine what it is that most upsets us about the situation.
This way of forgiveness is about finding the love within us — and FOR US — while struggling through the pain and anger of our loss, determining what it represents to us, and how it affects our mind, body, and soul in a way that keeps us from fully moving forward and joyfully living our lives. It is much easier to forgive ourselves first, let our hurt and anger over the situation dissipate through self-healing, and gradually work on forgiving someone else on our own terms if and when we want to extend that forgiveness.
By letting the wrongdoer move on without *our* anger, we free ourselves from their ability to control *our* emotions. And when they no longer have control over us, we are not expending any of our precious mental, spiritual, and emotional energy on them. This is the ultimate goal of healing, freeing ourselves, and truly living powerfully and beautifully. *Excerpt from my upcoming book release: Dark Night of the Soul: Using Ancestral Traditions to Overcome Depression, Loss, and Grief.
—Much love, Amara