Monday, June 21, 2010

Goal #66: Forgive someone (and forget)

As we go through our life, there are days when people hurt you, disappoint you, or completely shock the hell out of you in ways you never fathomed possible. 
Maybe you forgive them.  Maybe you don't. 
Maybe you say you forgive them because you want to, but you really haven't. 
I have said "I forgive you." many of times without meaning it, and absolutely without forgetting it.  (And trust me, some things you can never forget, and that's OK).
When I look back at the grudges I've held or the people I've written out of my life because of the things they've done to me, it surprises me.  Not just by the number of people who have hurt me, but because of the feelings that ignite inside me. 
Am I really still bothered by these things?  I don't believe so.  I get through my days without ever thinking of them, without ever twinging at the thought of old wounds. 
So why haven't I forgotten? 
I don't really know, but today, I am forgetting.  Today, I am freeing myself of the burden of other people's mistakes and putting them behind me. 
Today, begins a clean slate.

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

 Anger makes you smaller, while forgiveness forces you to grow beyond what you were.
- Cherie Carter-Scott

Not to forgive is to be imprisoned by the past, by old grievances that do not permit life to proceed with new business. Not to forgive is to yield oneself to another's control... to be locked into a sequence of act and response, of outrage and revenge, tit for tat, escalating always. The present is endlessly overwhelmed and devoured by the past. Forgiveness frees the forgiver. It extracts the forgiver from someone else's nightmare.
- Lance Morrow

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