“The truth is, unless you let go, unless you forgive yourself, unless you forgive the situation, unless you realize that the situation is over, you cannot move forward.” ― Steve Maraboli, author of the book ‘Life, the Truth, and Being Free.’
Holding onto anger
Unforgiveness means that you are holding onto anger, hate, and resentment, all of which can silently destroy your health. Research reveals that those who hold onto anger and hurt tend to have poorer overall health and also suffer from weakened immune systems which makes them more prone to developing a chronic disease, and more likely to die from that chronic illness.
In contrast, forgiving is a natural way of letting go and freeing yourself from the heavy burden that you have been carrying and ultimately improving your health. Many people mistakenly believe that forgiving someone means that you now condone the perpetrator or the bad behavior, but the act of forgiving is actually done as a way to lighten your own heart and mind and it is done because it is what is best for you.
Dr Bernie Seigel, Clinical Professor of Surgery at Yale Medical School says this about holding onto anger, “I have collected 57 extremely well documented so-called cancer miracles. At a certain particular moment in time, they all decided that the anger and the depression were probably not the best way to go, since they had such little time left. And so they went from that to being loving, caring, no longer angry, no longer depressed, and able to talk to the people they loved. These 57 people had the same pattern. They gave up, totally, their anger, and they gave up, totally, their depression, by specifically a decision to do so. And at that point the tumors started to shrink.”
According to Bernie Siegel, M.D., “we participate and are responsible for a lot of the things that happen to us. If you hate your job, you are much more likely to get sick and die at a younger age than someone who’s happy at work and has a nice family life and is mentally well adjusted.” As obvious as that may sound, unhappiness and fear is the root cause of many health problems. However, there is a way of turning around just about any ‘hopeless’ situation. Bernie says, “true inspiration overrides all fears. When you are inspired, you enter a trance state and can accomplish things that you may never have felt capable of doing.”
Exercises in forgiveness
1. Write a letter to the person(s) that you are having a hard time forgiving and explain why you have been so hurt or angry with them. This letter is not to be sent, as this is meant to be an exercise for you, to find out exactly where your anger and hurt comes from. Continue to write a new letter every week and see if your pain begins to lessen and you can may enter a place of emotional peace where forgiveness becomes a possibility.
2. Talk to a clergymen or other spiritual leader and see if talking over your thoughts and feelings with an understanding individual helps to put things into perspective.
2. You can listen to meditations and read books on finding forgiveness
3. Utilize one of the most powerful tools which is always available to you which is prayer, and ask for guidance in releasing these feelings that you have been harboring for so long. Turn it over to God, and let His hand guide you.
A video meditation on the power of forgiveness
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