Forgiveness is an important aspect of the healing process. When you’ve been wronged, even if it’s only a perceived wrong, the resulting hurt and rage can fester deep inside your heart and energy field. The longer you hold onto resentment and bitterness rather than forgiving the wrong, the more likely those bad emotions will generate discord in your system, resulting in chakra blockages and, eventually, physical symptoms and sickness. Forgiveness is a difficult thing for anyone to do. If you’ve been the victim of terrible betrayal, violence, desertion, or abuse, especially from a family member or caretaker, forgiveness may feel unattainable. It takes bravery, but you can do it, and your life will be infinitely better once you do.

Here are a few of the reasons why you should forgive:

  1. Forgiveness improves your mood. Forgiveness takes away the force of the injustice or hurt and allows you to let it go. Resentment or rage can show in your life as sadness, self-blame, guilt, loss of motivation, vengeance fantasies, anxiety, and other emotional and mental concerns, as well as physical health issues, particularly those associated to the heart chakra, such as asthma, pneumonia, breast or lung cancer. You take a big step toward healing yourself when you forgive. According to studies, forgiveness increases immune system function, and research has shown that when patients forgive inner hurts, pain levels decrease. This is because forgiveness dispels the clouds of darkness that negative emotions produce in your field and body, allowing light energy to fill in the gaps, recharging and energizing your entire being.
  2. Forgiveness does not imply absolution. I want to make sure you understand that forgiving someone does not absolve them of their actions. There are probably betrayals and traumas in your life that aren’t excused, and you shouldn’t feel obligated to downplay what occurred to you. What forgiveness entails is letting go of lingering feelings of resentment, wrath, hurt, and bitterness stemming from the events. Forgiveness implies that you have let go of any urge or desire for vengeance or retaliation. This is not a flaw; on the contrary, it is a strength. Forgiveness requires a lot of bravery and guts, but if you can do it, it will speed up your spiritual growth and set you free.
  3. Guilt obstructs your recovery. Guilt is an emotion that feeds on itself. It eats away at you from the inside, churning your stomach and making you stiff, and it’s not helping. Its one redeeming quality is that it encourages you to own up to and learn from your mistakes to the best of your ability. Then you must move on, which requires you to forgive yourself. Because you have to live with yourself every second of every day, self-forgiveness may be more vital than forgiving others. Blame and anger can cause blockages in your personal energy field if you are constantly berating yourself for past mistakes. You put yourself in danger if you don’t forgive yourself. If you have a health problem, such as cancer or another sickness, keep in mind that it is not your fault! You were working with the information you had at the time, and you had no influence over contaminants, genetics, or abusers. Wishing you could undo the past will get you nowhere, and blaming yourself will only make things worse.
  4. It is for you, not for them, to forgive. You are the only one who has a grudge against someone. Retaining a desire for vengeance, or any other negative attitude toward someone who has harmed you, does not affect them in the way you might hope. In fact, it has the opposite effect and does you a great deal of harm. When you forgive, you are removing a weight from your chest that you probably didn’t realize you were carrying, but once it is gone, you will feel so much lighter and freer.

If you’ve attempted to forgive but are having problems letting go of your anger or animosity, try writing about your feelings in a journal, which releases them from your body and energy field and allows new universal energy to replace the void. Finally, be kind to yourself. Forgiveness can be tough and time-consuming. But it’s well worth the work to be free of shame and bitterness and to be able to go forward in creating the life you want.