Excerpts from Chapter 9: Forgiveness

Excerpt 1: “A sincere act of forgiveness allows us to release negative energy (i.e., excessive levels of adrenaline, other stress hormones) that can literally become toxic to the cells within our bodies. This next passage from Discover the Power Within You by Eric Butterworth supports this very point:

Actually, forgiveness is the simplest way to lighten our burdens. The man who forgives is no more saintly than one who insists upon keeping clean. In reality, the act of forgiveness constitutes a mental bath-letting go of something that can only poison us within.93

Whenever we are unwilling to forgive, what we are doing is wasting a portion of our valuable present moment energy on something that no longer exists, except within the confines of our own mind.”
[93 Eric Butterworth, Discover the Power Within You, (New York, NY: HarperColllins Publishers, 1968) p. 154]

Excerpt 2: “When you do opt to forgive a person or persons that have harmed you, or one or more of your loved ones in some way, you are by no means condoning what they did – not at all. What you are demonstrating by practicing forgiveness is that you will not allow your psyche and/or your body to be poisoned by the negative energy associated with holding on to resentments or grudges.”

Excerpt 3: “Think about it for a moment, and you realize that it is true; people (including you) are generally so focused on themselves and their own personal drama that they tend to be oblivious to what anyone else is going through at the time. That’s why it is important for you not to take things personally, for people will be what people will be, and the underlying cause of their behavior actually has nothing to do with you. In that regard, consider this passage from a marvelous book called The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz:

Personal importance, or taking things personally, is the maximum expression of selfishness because we make the assumption that everything is about “me.” Nothing other people do is because of you. It is because of themselves. All people live in their own dream, in their own mind; they are in a completely different world than the one we live in. When we take something personally, we make the assumption that they know what is in our world, and we try to impose our world on their world. Even when a situation seems so personal, even if others insult you directly, it has nothing to do with you.108

[108 Don Miguel Ruiz, The Four Agreements, (San Rafael, CA: Amber-Allen Publishing, 1997) p. 48-49]

Excerpt 4: “When you blame other people, you effectively put both your feelings and your state-of-mind at the mercy of someone else’s behavior (e.g., I’ll be happy or satisfied when they apologize, or start or stop doing X or Y or Z, etc.). The better approach is for you to accept full responsibility for your life, adopting instead the perspective that it was you who attracted this negative person or situation to yourself so that you might learn a valuable lesson. It is from this position of personal power that true-life changes can occur.”

Read Excerpts from Chapter 10: The Path of Spiritual Growth