Last updated on November 23rd, 2019 at 08:43 pm
The growing field of research on forgiveness reveals ample evidence that forgiveness makes people happier and healthier. Even medical doctors are endorsing forgiveness as being helpful to the healing process. And forgiveness can be learned with practice, so anyone can apply forgiveness to heal and transform his or her life.
I believe strongly in the power of forgiveness. I am honoured to have co-authored Greatest Forgiveness: Bring Joy and Peace into Your Life through the Power of Unconditional Forgiveness, with Dr. and Master Zhi Gang Sha and Master Cynthia Deveraux. I’m delighted to share some of the wisdom of forgiveness and a simple practice with you, so you can begin to experience the transformation that forgiveness can bring to your life.
Why is forgiveness important?
By forgiveness, we mean to lovingly pardon someone for a mistake or debt. True forgiveness is unconditional forgiveness. Unconditional forgiveness is to forgive completely, without any conditions or expectations. It is to totally let go of any upset, anger, vengefulness, victimization, sense of injustice, anxiety, fear and more.
There are many reasons to forgive. One is that our true, highest nature is to forgive. Thus, forgiveness helps us attain a higher level of existence and develop maturity and wisdom. It’s “the right thing to do.”
Another reason to forgive is that the alternative—unforgiveness—can be like swallowing poison. Like this ancient saying suggests: If you devote your life to seeking revenge, first dig two graves, some of the thoughts and behaviours associated with unforgiveness can hurt everyone involved.
But many of the good reasons to forgive are related to the fact that it releases us from pain and supports our physical, mental and emotional well-being. Research shows that forgiveness is associated with a reduction in stress, depression, anxiety, psychiatric disorders, cardiovascular disease, anger, hostility, morbidity and more, as well as increases in immunity and self-esteem, just to name a few examples.
In short, learning how to forgive is one of the best things we can do for our health and well-being, as well as for our spiritual journey and the world in general.
The principles of forgiveness
Everyone needs forgiveness, because everyone makes mistakes. We all encounter painful situations that require forgiveness for us to be healthy and happy. But like many worthwhile endeavours, forgiveness can be easier to talk about than to do. It takes willingness, commitment and practice.
To help ourselves to forgive, it’s useful to have a framework. There are many philosophies and spiritual traditions that speak to forgiveness. For example, Christianity teaches us to turn the other cheek—and the famous words attributed to the one known as Jesus, near the end of his life, were “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” This demonstrates that he had compassion and understanding for those who were doing him harm.
Another general philosophy that can be found in many eastern spiritual traditions is the concept of Karma or ‘what goes around comes around.’ Generally, this framework asks us to consider the idea that our present situations are based on our soul’s history, and have been designed to give us opportunities to atone, learn and grow. According to this framework, we can make great progress on our physical and spiritual journeys through forgiveness.
To understand more about how forgiveness can help us, it’s helpful to also understand another framework about the power of the soul.
Dr. and Master Zhi Gang Sha has taught that the soul is the boss of our lives. He and Dr. Rulin Xiu, co-founders of Tao Science, have presented clear definitions of the soul, heart, mind and body. They offer the Law of Shen Qi Jing, where Shen is Information and has three components: soul, heart and mind. Qi is energy and Jing is matter.
For any entity, soul (spirit) is the content of information, heart (spiritual heart) is the receiver of information, mind (consciousness) is the processor of information, energy is the ‘actioner’ of information, and matter is the physical reality and reflection of information. Matter is also the transformer, as changes in matter can sometimes transform energy, consciousness, heart and soul.
Zhi Gang Sha and Xiu propose that the soul leads the heart, the heart leads the mind, the mind leads energy and energy leads matter.
Within this framework, we can see how the soul is the leader in our lives and how the pieces of information found in our souls truly create our lives. This information can be positive and/or negative, based on our soul’s history and that of our ancestors.
If we are sick, or we have relationship issues, financial issues or more, there must be negative information in the soul that pertains to certain areas of life. Practicing forgiveness can transform that negative information into positive information by bringing love and light into the blockages. This may happen bit by bit or swiftly, depending on the circumstances.
Anyone can learn to apply forgiveness for life transformation. There are only upsides to forgiveness for the soul.
How can we accomplish forgiveness?
Many people think forgiveness is only needed when they feel hurt by someone. They may not realize that forgiveness will help them with any life challenge. They may not understand that the status of their health, relationships, finances and more are related to the information in their soul.
Thus, for any painful or challenging condition, according to this wisdom, there is negative information rooted in the soul, and it’s related to our past or our ancestors’ past. We can begin to transform such a condition through sincere forgiveness practice, thereby bringing love and light into the soul and facilitating the transformation of the soul, heart, mind and body.
While other efforts may be needed, especially for serious and chronic life challenges, the soul’s transformation is the ultimate key to healing.
It is also important to realize that forgiveness is a two-way street. We need to offer complete forgiveness to others and seek complete forgiveness from others, even if we do not recall or fully grasp our mistakes or those of our ancestors.
A simple practice
Here is a simple practice you can use that incorporates the Four Power Techniques, also taught by Dr. and Master Zhi Gang Sha.
Body Power: Sit down comfortably, with your back away from your chair and your spine straight but relaxed, as it would be in a meditation position. If you need more support, relax and use it. You can even lie down if you wish; just practice silently, in that case.
Soul Power: Connect at the Soul level in the following (or a similar) way:
Dear ______ (Divine/God/Tao/Universal Light and/or your spiritual mothers and fathers),
Dear all the souls my ancestors or I have ever hurt or harmed in association with ________ (Name your challenge/condition. You can also practice in general, without specifics),
I love you all.
My name is _______.
I deeply apologize for the mistakes my ancestors and I have made against you in our lifetimes.
Please forgive us.
I will do better. I will help others to be happier and healthier.
I’m so grateful for your forgiveness.
We forgive all who have harmed us.
We forgive you.
Mind Power: Visualize light in the area of your condition or challenge. You can also visualize all the souls involved, as if they were gathered in a circle of light before you. As you chant the mantra, visualize the light going from you and your ancestors to the hearts of these souls, as well as into the area you are focusing on.
Sound Power: Chant silently or aloud, repeatedly:
I forgive you unconditionally.
You forgive me unconditionally.
Bring love, peace and harmony.
Chant for at least three to five minutes. The longer you chant, the better.
When you are finished, say thank you from your heart. You can also courteously release the souls you brought in by saying “please kindly return.”
This is a simple, but very powerful practice. There is great flexibility in what can be done. The most important factor is sincerity. If you practice sincerely and regularly, it will touch your heart and the hearts of the souls involved in your condition.
The power of this practice goes even higher when we use more powerful tools. I invite you to apply the power of the Tao Calligraphy—the Healing Art Field—from Greatest Forgiveness. It could positively change your life.
No matter what challenges you face in life, forgiveness can help you and bring transformation. If you don’t know where to begin, just start with a general forgiveness practice by asking for forgiveness and offering forgiveness to others.
Just practice. If you practice, you could have a heart-touching breakthrough, and this will inspire you to create more and more breakthroughs through the Greatest Forgiveness.
I wish you the greatest success in your forgiveness and transformation journey!