Forgiveness is difficult – or it seems that way. Recent tragic events may even make it seems impossible. For the moment, though, let’s think about forgiveness in normal everyday life.
Forgiveness is about letting go. It may be excusing a wrong done to us or releasing a debt that someone has difficulty in paying. Both of these imply some sort of release. Of greatest significance in our quest for finding happiness is the letting go of any anger or resentment we have. Anger, resentment and other powerful negative emotions are harmful to ourselves as well as creating unpleasantness for those around us.
When we think of forgiveness, we might think that we are doing someone else a big favour. After all, why should we? Don’t they deserve a grudge, anger or irritation or even simply a sense of blame. But that’s just the ego making us feel a little bit grand. Let’s be perfectly clear about this: the person who is released most of all is the one who forgives.
Forgiveness gives you happiness and well-being
If the forgiver is the main beneficiary, then we can afford to be pretty generous with our forgiving! There are three main angles to think about:
- forgiveness towards ourselves,
- forgiving those who have harmed or offended us and
- cultivating a general attitude of forgiveness towards the world at large.
That sounds a fairly tall order but it is possible in time. The important thing is to work towards it because the more we are able to forgive, the happier we will be. In the main, happier human beings are better human beings.
More on this in Chapter 2 of The Great Little Book of Happiness