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Avatar universal

Forgiving others

I came across this while reaching for healing things this morning:


If you have intense anger in your heart for someone who hurt you badly in the recent or distant past, I encourage you to read Tyler's thoughts here:The End Of The Fury

-I can't get over how powerful his last statement is:
When you haven't forgiven those who've hurt you, you turn your back against your future. When you do forgive, you start walking forward.-
I understand and agree with the idea that forgiving others is more about your peace of mind then it is about theirs. You don't have to make it known to the people who hurt you that you have forgiven them. The issue is learning how to transcend the hurt, how to get to a place in your heart and mind where the hurt is no longer holding you back from fully caring for others and allowing yourself to be cared for by others.

Is it possible to truly forgive all transgressions?

How do you forgive someone who physically abused you when you were a child? How do you forgive someone who raped you or a family member? How do you forgive someone who spread vicious and humiliating lies about you? How do you forgive parents who put their own needs and egos way ahead of your basic emotional needs as a child? How do you forgive a parent who left you when you were young? How do you forgive someone who has sucked the joy out of your life through his or her negative, hypocritical, phony, lazy, selfish, and ill-tempered behavior over 30 years of marriage?

I really don't have a clue how you can truly forgive others for any of the above. Maybe complete forgiveness is impossible in some cases. Maybe sometimes, the hurt is so bad that the quality of your health and life will suffer for the rest of your life because you will always harbor some anger towards the people who hurt you. If you are determined to find a way to free yourself of the burden of chronic anger, no matter how badly you have been hurt, there is one powerful and effective exercise that I can recommend.

It's to sit or lie in a quiet place and imagine your tormentors as they were when they were babies or very young children. Visualize these people one at a time, and really take time to feel the realities of their lives as toddlers. Babies are not born with a distinct desire to hurt others physically or emotionally. They are born craving love and protection. Visualize what your tormentors were like when they did nothing but crave love and protection. If you work at realizing how pure and innocent your tormentors once were, you may come to a point where it becomes clear that their hurtful acts as older children or adults stem from their own wounds, from their own emotional memories of being hurt and/or neglected.

If you know of another effective way of bringing yourself to forgive people who have hurt you badly, I would really appreciate you sharing in the comments section below. Your thoughts on this topic may eventually make a significant difference in another person's life.

Thank you.


13 Responses
1167108 tn?1328442913
Great Post and indeed it could make a big difference in the life of someone or sveral peolple. I have had the experince of uncondtioanlly for giving someone fro many years of hurt their actions caused me. I will speak to the beow scenario that ou quoted in your post.

"How do you forgive parents who put their own needs and egos way ahead of your basic emotional needs as a child? How do you forgive a parent who left you when you were young? "

My mother abused drugs and alcohol from when i was born until I was 14 when my parents divorced. Her addiciton left her unable top function as a mother to myself and my four other siblings. SHe went to rehab and she got cleanand has staed calen for 38 years. She is very active in AA and credits them with saving her life. I ruly believe this to be the case.

The last time that I saw my mother was 14. Ata ge 43 I decided to unconditionally forgive her for the mistakes and misdeeds in her past. Prior to this I was not unable to tlak to my wife about my mother as the memories were far too painful to revisit.

I wrote my mother  along letter letting her knwo that I have decided to un conditionally fro give her. I also let my faimily mbers know as well so they would notbe blindsided. Months after this I had her come and visit me and my famiuly for four days. We reamin in contact to this day.

The one ground rule I had is that we can't revist the past as this was to be a fresh start. I felt so much bettter after frogiving her unconditionally. One must be ready to bury the past forever in order for this approach to work. The person being forgiven has to agree to not revisit the past as well or it will not work, at least not for me.

Once I uncondtionally forgave my mother I felt a tremendous sense of relief as I felt free of all of tha baggage that I had been carrying around with me all of my life. I have a clear consious about everything. None of my other siblings have elected to ake this approach although one of my sister's tried to but she was not ready and it did not work for her.

Unconditioannly forgiving someone and truly meaning it is the greatest gift that you can give someone. It helps the person doing the acts of forgiviness as well.
Avatar universal
To not forgive others you give them power over you and you take the power away from Jesus to deal with them by being an obstacle in his path. It is a choice to forgive or not. By choosing not, you choose to continue to give those that hurt you power over you. IMO
1032715 tn?1315987834
I have forgiven my brother,not for him but for me he doesn't know I have forgiven him and I still choose to have nothing to do with him,but I have been able to move on with my life by forgiving and giving the ownership of what he did to me back to him.I don't have to even think about the abuse anymore it is a non-event in my life now,I live for me and my wellbeing not for something that happened 41 years ago.Because I chose to forgive him he can't hurt me or rule my life any more.I'm truly free of him.

757137 tn?1347200053
Sorry, fellas, I do not believe in forgiveness. Nothing anyone does can be undone. So I don't forgive. I turn my back and walk away.
Avatar universal
I dont forget either, but in order for me to go forward, I do forgive, but they dont get the chance to do it again either.
757137 tn?1347200053
You voice the Christian ethos. Most of the world is not Christian. The Moslems (and, no, I am not Moslem), for instance, do not believe you can wipe the slate clean. What they do espouse is doing good works to counterbalance the evil.

Nor do I accept that if you do not forgive, the culprit has power over you. That is something one hears over and over again, but what is the rationale? Obsessing over a wrong, however,  does give power to the wrongdoer. So I say walk away and forget about him or her. (Unless you can wreak revenge -  a delicious opportunity not to be missed.)
Avatar universal
I understand where you come from. But for me, If I had not learned the art of forgiveness, I would either be in a looney bin, or would have already killed someone. So for me forgiveness is what kept me from going there. The heart does not have room for all that anger and hatred without taking it out on your body mentally and physically. IMO It really doesnt hurt the other person anyway, just the one carrying it.
757137 tn?1347200053
Anger, like grief, is cleansing and cathartic. To suppress these emotions, or philosophically sidetrack them, merely leaves them to smolder. When five school friends of my two older children died in a plane crash, along with their parents, I did not get them a grief counselor (whatever that is), I took them to the funeral.
1032715 tn?1315987834
My reason for forgiving was not due to a christian ethos,it was to help me learn that what happened to me as a child didn't matter any more in the big scheme of things.maybe there is another word for forgiveness,your not forgiving the abuse that happened but you are moving on with your life,my counsellor is my life coach that is helping me live the best life I can,only a small portion of our time actually dealt with the abuse to teach me not to dwell on it,and how to live a life drug and alcohol free.
I went through the anger,the hate,and wanting to kill him,I even thought about paying someone because I knew I couldn't do it myself,but in the end I realised moving forward was more important.

757137 tn?1347200053
I guess one's method of handling bad situations has to due with temperament and perception.  At a wedding reception I ran across someone I had not seen since childhood. He was the family dentist. I was always uncomfortable going to him because, when I was in the chair, he would lean against me and something hard would rub against my arm. I didn't know what was happening but I knew it was "strange." I had the pleasure of addressing him years later at the wedding, in a loud voice, "Oh, yes, I remember you. You were that pervy old guy who rubbed up against young girls." He beat a quick retreat and I had a good laugh. Sorry, naria, but I really enjoyed his humiliation. Give me the Old Testament any day.
1032715 tn?1315987834
Sometimes I wish I had the gumption to say what I thought,I'd love to have been there to see his face.Very Funny
757137 tn?1347200053
That is more or less what I meant about temperament. Some people are shy and gentle and the hurt goes deep. Others are up-front and gutsy and bounce back like rubber balls.
Avatar universal
How do I Forgive my Borther in law for neglecting my Sister My not allowing her to get medical treatment for cancer? He also isolated her from family and is very overbearing and would not let me or MY Sisters Or Mother see her at all before she died. His reasoning is because he had phone number changed and we could not call so I begged him on facebook to get her medical help and get her in Hospital. He said I ruined his Familys name. But I was begging for mY sisters Life. He took out of Hospital after we had cops make him get her there. But By then she was too weak and he got her sign over papers to leave Hospital against their recommendations and he was suppose to bring her back and never did> The Nurse he said he hired was Hospice and found out was not. He was having and affair with this nurse> It's very gruesome how she suffered and we have been told in Illinois once spouse has control family can do nothing. This is very hard on me and My Mom. My other Sisters refuse to talk about it.  Our two brothers were the only ones allowed to see her before she died. Now awful things are going on. She still has two teen daughters left and they are becoming like his mentality and its ugly and very hurtful. My brothers would never stand up to him. But Myself, Mother and two sisters would have fought to get her too treatment had we ever been told or known.
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