Practicing Forgiveness

Everyday practice bringing into your consciousness the intention to be kind to others, to forgive, to be more compassionate, to fight any habitual criticisms or judgments you may make of others, and to send loving and healing energy.

Imagine what power this can have considering how many individuals we encounter whether in person, on the internet, or by phone each day… in one week… in one year… in a lifetime… and if we choose to treat them with utmost kindness and show them respect (stranger or friend).

Send healing, positive energy to others. 

Step outside of your needs, of what is happening to you in your life, and instead send healing or loving energy to those you know that are in need. Focus on seeing them in that healing energy and receiving it.

“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.” Mahatma Gandhi

For example, whenever I see someone that looks like they are in need, or if I am beginning to judge or critique someone who may be frustrating me I practice bringing my mind back to sending them positive, healing energy– refocusing my intention to be more kind to others. Usually, I affirm this message to or say this prayer for the other person:

May you be safe.
May you be healthy.
May you be happy.
May you live with ease.

You can modify this healing message or prayer depending on what you feel in your heart. Feel free to say whatever is right for you.

The interesting thing about this practice is that not only does the person who you send this intention benefit by receiving your compassionate energy, but it is also healing for yourself. When you smile, for ex, at another person, your smile helps you to feel happier too. Also, the more love and compassion you practice showing others– the more you will begin to direct these positive, understanding feelings toward yourself. Many of us are the hardest on ourselves, and this is often the biggest thing preventing us from feeling happy and at peace, so beginning to take on this practice will truly help you to heal yourself as well.

If there is something or someone that has truly become a difficult or painful situation to you personally, you may want to take the time to meditate or do some inward practice in silence in which you can focus and reflect on sending loving, positive, and healing energy toward all the individuals involved. Visualize yourself and the other individual(s) feeling more peaceful, having a more harmonious relationship, or achieving a more loving environment between each other.

Be specific in your situation; for example, if there is a lot of arguing at home or at the office– see all those involved at this place, see each person surrounded by gold healing light and see smiles on their faces. If someone is ill mentally or spiritually and it is affecting your relationship, visualize them in whatever way it is that they need to heal, see them relaxed and happy.

Whatever you want to manifest, visualize it. And try to practice this meditation whenever the problem begins to worry you. This way you can also change your energy from feeling worried or stressed about interpersonal relationships to problem solving and feeling more expansive. You will begin to open up to and even attract more positive energy between yourself and the other person(s) involved. Often, when we finally calm down about the situation, we are able to handle it better– or even better– the solution just pops into our head!

In this way, you can also learn to forgive more.

You can also use these types of affirmations and visualizations to let go of the things that are bothering you about old fights or wounds with other people. You can open yourself up to healing that can happen by letting go of any anger or resentment. This is extremely beneficial to our health (mental and physical), because you let go of stress that may be affecting you subconsciously, and you start to feel any negative energy you have pent up energy letting go.

Intuitively, this makes sense– when you finally confront a negative situation and get passed it, you go from feeling down and heavy to feeling light and free! But physically, it truly does help you because the added stress is affecting your immune system– and all the physical ailments that go along with a compromised immune system like colds, ulcers, asthma, etc. get worse. It may even be causing you to do behaviors that we like to do when ignoring stress or emotions– like overeating, partying, or becoming more argumentative and making the situation even harder to fix.

But by dealing with the actual causes of stress, you are freeing yourself from this negative cycle and starting a new and healthier pattern of emotional processing.

Another method that can help when trying to practice forgiveness is writing a letter. Address this letter to one person who you would like to focus on. In this letter,  express in detail what pains they caused you and how you were hurt– think of as many as possible. Then end the letter with how you will forgive this person for each of those specific things.


For example, write the story of events, then begin with statements such as, “I forgive (name of person) for (specific detail),” and continue with these statements until you feel the writing flow has ended.

Then, each day continue to write this letter– I suggest every night before bed when you will continue to be able to process it subconsciously in your sleep– and over time the list of hurts and pains you forgive them for will grow shorter and shorter. And you will find the feeling of forgiveness begins to take over that of sadness or anger. Then, when the time is right– and you will know when this is– the last of the sadness or anger will lift. You will be free from the pain.

Forgiveness is such a powerful tool on the spiritual path because it frees the heart. And we need the heart to be strong:

“Be afraid of nothing. Hate no one. Give love to all.”–Paramhansa Yogananda

Further Reading:


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