We can learn to LOVE ourselves and others by FORGIVING rather than Judging.
ATTITUDINAL HEALING PRINCIPLE # 6
(NOTE: TO SEE ALL THE 12 PRINCIPLES OF ATTITUDINAL HEALING SEE BLOG POST OF MARCH 15, 2018.)
Personal Note: I am reminded that Attitudinal Healing is a “Process” and I realize that I am learning something new as I re-learn and remember that…LOVE is the answer…and my only goal is inner peace. I hope this is still worthwhile for you, also. With peace and love, Susan Thiem
FORGIVING = Joining together or JUDGING = Separation
Forgiveness and judging are at two ends of the spectrum…can you see that? One joins us together and offers support, the other separates us and adds to our loneliness.
When we are judging (Complaining, Criticizing or Condemning: the Big 3 C’s) ourselves and others (which we can do EVERY DAY) it results in separation and isolation from our true selves, others…and God. It separates us from loving ourselves in that moment. We can feel anger, resentment, frustration, and more suffering. Do you ever say to yourself, a child or someone else something like: “You dummy; or stupid, jerk” or worse? If it’s about ourselves then we will feel that we are a victim; and we cannot heal when we stay in a judgment / victim mode.
- Do you want to feel that way, even if you think you have a “right” to?
- Do you want to feel alone and isolated?
You may feel justified…but that doesn’t feel good…it does not feel loving and healing! This is damaging physically, psychologically and spiritually to our self and the other person. If our only goal is inner peace, then we really do want to choose differently.
The first step is to be aware that we are judging/criticizing then acknowledge our judging. Start by paying attention each day to when you criticize yourself or another person.
Forgiveness is a gift we give ourselves!
Forgiveness is a gift we give ourselves! It is natural to want to forgive and be forgiven…and want inner peace. Forgiveness does NOT deny what happened or say that what you, or someone else did, was OK or helpful. It does allow for the natural consequences (penalties, jail, failure, etc) of actions to occur. For us, forgiveness is the willingness to search for a truth that lies beyond our understanding and the situation; to want to see life differently and have inner peace. Forgiveness is the willingness to perceive ourselves and others when we are not in a loving state, as giving a call for help, which is a call for love. (Learn more about this in Principle #12.)
Results of Forgiveness
Can you understand that painful actions are coming from unhealed emotional wounds, usually from childhood, or some younger life, that are being acted out, expressed still today? If these issues are resolved in adulthood then we are not as likely to “act out”…not as likely to come from fear so often or to such an extreme, and it is quicker and easier to come from love.
There are stories in Attitudinal Healing where parents and loved ones have forgiven murderers of their loved ones! They released their hatred and felt compassion and love. They hugged and cried together. Now, that is forgiveness. And it is a process. It took them awhile to get there. Forgiveness means that we want to live with an open heart and hold ourselves and others in our hearts and not hold on to our unhealthy feelings and fear-based thoughts, which harm us.
Forgiveness is grace and is not something you “do” but something that reveals itself. Grace is an attitude and it does not imply that a specific action must be taken by either person. With grace as our intention, we experience an inner change in our perception of how we see another person (and/or ourselves).
Furthermore, forgiveness reduces stress and positively affects the physical and mental health of the person doing the forgiving. Good reasons to forgive! Try it!
What I’ve Learned
I have had two people who I have had an especially hard time forgiving in my life. One was my ex-husband and the other was a teacher what was particularly critical of one of my children. I has angry, disappointed, and sad at times. I thought they “should have known better” after all, they were adults. I was judging and criticizing. Finally I realized that when I did that I felt lousy inside and decided I did not want to feel that way any longer. I could change my attitude! Forgiveness is for me! I could let them “go” and know that they will feel the consequences of their actions in some way. It is OK for them to be them in whatever way they want to be…and I want to be me; kind, giving and forgiving, I hope.
(Some concepts are taken from “To See Differently” by Susan Trout
(out of print but has been available through Amazon.com).
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This Awesome Attitudes Blog for Peace is non-denominational and non-political as it is a community to unify in kindness, respect, and compassion. ***