In Part Three of our Three-Part series, “Ten Pathways to Positive Speech” we saw that Pathway Number Ten was to forgive. If you’ve been wronged, let it go. Often, it’s not as important to do this for the other person’s sake as it is to do it for your sake.
The ability to forgive (and yes, forget) elicits a healthier, happier and less stressful life for the those who can do this.
As a person who – for years – held bitter grudges against people who’d wronged me (both for real and others whose “sins against me” I’d built up more in my own mind), I can attest that a spirit of forgiveness and forgetness makes for a much richer and happier life. And, for very selfish reasons.
I believe it was Gandhi who said, “Holding a grudge is like swallowing poison and expecting the other person to die.” (Or, it might have been my old buddy, Tom Davis who said that; I’m not sure.) 🙂
So, I was delighted when a man I’ve had the privilege of getting to know over the past year both as a friend and a client, Joe Vizi posted the following in the comments section after Part Three:
“Just buried the hatchet with my neighbor. Six months of no talking has ended. I feel so much better!”
Joe, I’m so proud of you. And, I appreciate the private email you sent me with a fuller explanation. If you wouldn’t mind posting it in the Comments section here, that would be terrific. Only if you feel comfortable doing so, of course.
The Talmud asks, “Who is Mighty?” and answers, “The one who can control his emotions and make, of an enemy, a friend.” And, that’s exactly what Joe did.
How often has history also taught us that former enemies who become friends often become some of our closest, most loyal and life-enriching friends?
Of course, often, the act of forgiveness will not take an inter-personal form as it did with Joe and his neighbor. Much of the time you’ll simply make the decision to forgive someone who doesn’t even know they’ve been living in your mind. And, it will simply be a life-affirming pleasure to gently and emotionally remove them.
Any examples of the above you’d like to share?
Is there anyone today you can simply forgive…and yes, forget, the wrong they did to you?