Advice on Forgiveness: Forming a New, More Intimate Relationship With Your Wound.
Dear Andrew. . .
How do we forgive someone that hurt us?
Best wishes, Leslie
Forgiveness is hard because it requires us to come closer to our wounds. Like a scar, the part of us that was hurt may never go away and, to forgive and heal, we need to reimagine our relationship with the pain we are left with. We need to give ourselves permission to feel the pain fully in order to understand it in a different way; in a way we can honestly move forward with.
In essence, forgiveness requires that we create a larger and more generous identity than the one that was hurt. It needs us to become someone who can hold the person who is crying inside of us. Once we become this larger and more mature person, we must extend that same generosity now inside us to the person who gave us the wound in the first place. We must do this, not necessarily for them, but for us.
Whenever I am having trouble forgiving someone, I like to remember that I am doing it for myself too. I am doing it to give myself clarity and to allow myself to create something new from the ashes of my life.
If you are wondering how you can forgive, then you probably want to and you are just looking for a reason. You want to because you know in your heart that the burden of anger or hatred is too much to bear. You know that holding onto these negative feelings does you no good.
So, in light of this, just remember that forgiveness is not about forgetting your pain. It is about forming a new, more intimate relationship with your wound. It is about becoming a larger and more compassionate person than you were before. It is about this new person holding the part of you that is hurt inside. And it is about opening your arms to the person who hurt you, not necessarily for them, but for yourself.
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