The Freedom of Forgiveness

This article appeared in the Fall 2001 issue of Spirited Solutions’ Newsletter.

As some of you know, I recently had an emergency appendectomy. One of the real gifts of this experience was the opportunity to look at the amends I needed to make to myself and others, and to let go of people who were/are not supportive of me.
I was surprised at the people who came through to help who I did not consider close friends and equally surprised at the close friends who were not there for me at this time. I did feel let down by those intimate friends who were not there for me; however, I recognize that Spirit was giving me an excellent opportunity to realign my life with the people whose values and lifestyles closely match my own. It is difficult to let go of old friends, yet sometimes it is necessary. We can forgive the person, even if we cannot forgive their behavior.

All of us have someone to forgive, and most of us need to forgive ourselves for past mistakes as well as our Higher Power for not doing everything “our” way. I offer you the following very effective procedure for forgiveness:

  • Make a list of everyone you need to forgive on one side and everyone you need to be forgiven by on the other. Work with the list for several days, adding to it as needed. Remember to include yourself and your Higher Power.
  • As soon as you are ready, light a candle and say a prayer to Divine Spirit asking for help in forgiving and being forgiven. Read each name on your list, visualize the person’s face in your mind, and say “I forgive you completely, so and so” or “I ask to be forgiven by you completely, so and so.” Then speak a blessing aloud for that person, such as “John, I bless you with love and joy.” Trust your heart to find the right words.
  • When done, rip the paper into tiny pieces and burn it in a safe place. (I use my great grandmother’s cast iron pan but have to disconnect my smoke alarm first!) Put the ashes in a sealed envelope and go release them in a place you love that has both land and water. (University Lake and Jordan Lake have no doubt been the recipients of many of my clients’ forgiveness work.)
  • Know that with this process you have freed up space for more love, light, and joy in your life. Forgiveness is always something we do for ourselves, not the person to be forgiven.

If you find it hard to undertake this process, feel free to schedule a session with me and I will support you in completing it and also do some energetic clearing for you. It is usually extremely helpful to have another person present, guiding and uplifting you as you confront and let go of resentments, bitterness, and hurt.