Forgiveness

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Forgiveness

Postby Chas » Fri Jun 26, 2015 2:28 pm

Hello,

My focus for the next few weeks is to develop the "tools" needed in order to forgive those that brought me great pain. Does anyone have any suggestions that will help in making this crucial step permanent.

Chas
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Re: Forgiveness

Postby whipping post » Fri Jun 26, 2015 2:46 pm

Have you done a fourth and fifth step yet? They really made a huge difference to me.
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Re: Forgiveness

Postby Chas » Fri Jun 26, 2015 3:04 pm

I think I have done a good job with Step 4......more to work on. Just beginning Step 5. Thanks for the advice.
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Re: Forgiveness

Postby avaneesh912 » Fri Jun 26, 2015 4:31 pm

There is a good piece of advice from the book around this area.

This was our course: We realized that the people who wronged us were perhaps spiritually sick. Though we did not like their symptoms and the way these disturbed us, they, like ourselves, were sick too. We asked God to help us show them the same tolerance, pity, and patience that we would cheerfully grant a sick friend. When a person offended we said to ourselves, "This is a sick man. How can I be helpful to him? God save me from being angry. Thy will be done."


By realizing what the book says and praying sincerely we can overcome the resentment and love flows through us.
Show him, from your own experience, how the peculiar mental condition surrounding that first drink prevents normal functioning of the will power (Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)
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Re: Forgiveness

Postby Brock » Fri Jun 26, 2015 4:35 pm

Hi there Chas. Don’t want to change your mind on what you hope to achieve or discourage you in any way, especially since you are going so well and even encouraging others, which is outstanding, just want to lay a little of my experience on you.

Firstly, the fifth step should be done in one go, or if the person you discuss it with can’t stay for however long it might take then finish the following day. You should try to note as much as you can in four, but don’t be overly concerned about forgetting something; any gaps tend to be filled in when you do five.

I agree with whipping post re: these steps making a big difference, but from my experience we don’t really develop the “tools” to forgive others over a short period of time, this develops as we progress. In my case I didn’t even realize I had forgiven certain people until I ran into them, and realized that I held no ill feeling anymore. Also this may not be a everybody gets forgiven at the same time deal, with those who hurt you the most it may take longer. I find this part of the process hard to describe, this is where you must have faith in the program, it worked for us and it will work for you, keep up the good work you will get the wonderful results we all have.
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Re: Forgiveness

Postby Chas » Fri Jun 26, 2015 5:09 pm

Thank you. I guess being new to all of this, I need to see it as a journey and not a scripted process. I guess that the teacher in me has to remember there is no lesson plan......just great teaching.
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Re: Forgiveness

Postby ezdzit247 » Fri Jun 26, 2015 5:18 pm

Chas wrote:Hello,

My focus for the next few weeks is to develop the "tools" needed in order to forgive those that brought me great pain. Does anyone have any suggestions that will help in making this crucial step permanent.

Chas


Great topic!

Years ago when I was about 7 years sober, a bunch of things happened and I was going through a really rough time in sobriety trying to deal with a ridiculously huge amount of crap getting dumped on my head from out of the blue in a very short space of time. It was overwhelming all my mental, emotional, and spiritual resources and I felt like I was going crazy. After I prayed a few days for guidance and direction, God sent me an "eskimo", an AA friend who popped in to see me for about 2 minutes on his lunch hour, said "pray this prayer" and then left to go back to work:

"God, heal me. Heal (__name__). Heal our relationship."


I prayed the prayer and started feeling better immediately. I found that the more I repeated the prayer, the more I healed from my hurt, hate, fear, anger, confusion, etc, and the better I felt. As a result of using that prayer for several weeks, I was able to do the thing that seemed impossible for me and that was to feel real forgiveness towards all of my "trespassers". What I learned from the experience is that crap happens and people can still be real jerks sometimes, but nothing and no one can block me from the "sunlight of the spirit" or knock me off my spiritual path or mess with my serenity unless I let them by refusing to forgive them. That's what worked for me. Hope this prayer tool is useful to you.

Keep coming back....





,
“To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children...to leave the world a better place...to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” -- Ralph Waldo Emerson
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Re: Forgiveness

Postby Chas » Fri Jun 26, 2015 5:41 pm

My story is similar to yours. Thank you for sharing. I will start using the prayer tonight and every night.
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Re: Forgiveness

Postby Reborn » Fri Jun 26, 2015 7:44 pm

I found that once I did the 5th step I ceased being a victim of the resentments I had. I remember when I started doing my 5th step I thought "finally I'm going to get some justice." The opposite happened what I really got is a heavy dose of humility. When doing the 4th step inventory we disregard the other man entirely we look at where we were selfish, self-seeking, dishonest and affraid. Forgiveness came to me by looking at each resentment in this way. Instead of looking at the wrong doing of others I had to look at my side and how that played out in my life. Once I shared these things out loud through God and another human being there was a sense of freedom and yes forgiveness. The sense of freedom and forgiveness was intensified when I completed my amends in the 9th step. As my sponsor would say "stay where your hands are and trust the process."
We have recovered, and have been given the power to help others. BB pg 132
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Re: Forgiveness

Postby Chas » Fri Jun 26, 2015 8:49 pm

Reborn,

Thank you!!!

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Re: Forgiveness

Postby maurits » Fri Jun 26, 2015 10:39 pm



they, like ourselves, were sick too.


Alcoholics Anonymous (page 67)

as already mentioned by others, this realization became very important to me as well,
it offered me the opening i needed, through forgiveness, by undeserved letting go of the people who have harmed me,
to break out of that vicious generational cycle of abuse and co-dependency, and become free,

which also happened,

step by step, one day at a time,

and for that i am grateful
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Re: Forgiveness

Postby PaigeB » Fri Jun 26, 2015 11:06 pm

HI all - good discussion so I moved the whole thread to - you guessed it - Discussions!

Sorry for any inconvenience!
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Re: Forgiveness

Postby positrac » Sat Jun 27, 2015 6:12 am

Forgiveness is really important and as a reminder as long as we don't hurt others in our process of cleaning our house we achieve some peace.

Forgiveness is good as we are supposed to let go and we never totally forget and those we hurt don't forget either and so because we ask for forgiveness of our past it doesn't mean the red carpet is rolled out and all if forgot.

But at least you are willing to go and work on fixing the past as best as can be expected.
You must live your life from beginning to end: No one else can do it for you.
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Re: Forgiveness

Postby Brock » Sun Aug 27, 2017 2:27 pm

I revived this old thread on forgiveness, to put up this mornings writing from Richard Roar, a good friend of AA, who uses the example of the 12 steps in many of his teachings. His daily e-mail messages can be received by goggling 'Richard Rohr daily meditations,' and subscribing under the e-mail section. I was introduced to it here, and other members also enjoy reading his words each morning. He is a priest and there are sometimes bible references in his writing, so it's not for everyone, but as priests go he seems a cool dude, this forgiveness business is something I am working on, and this story about his mother really hit home.

The Power of Forgiveness
Sunday, August 27, 2017
 
Among the most powerful of human experiences is to give or to receive forgiveness. I want to share with you a personal story of forgiveness that happened in my family near the time of my mother’s death.
She was lingering on the threshold, and for several days she had been talking about “a mesh” she couldn’t get through.
I was sitting by her bed, telling her how much I would miss her. She said she wanted to hear that from my father, whom we always called “Daddy.” Of course, Daddy had been telling her that for weeks.
So Daddy came over and effusively told her, “Oh, I’m going to miss ya.”
She replied, “I don’t believe it.”
I couldn’t believe my ears! I said, “Mother, you’re a few hours from death. You can’t say that!”
She persisted: “I don’t believe it.”
Daddy redoubled his efforts: “I ask your forgiveness for all the times I’ve hurt you in our fifty-four years of marriage, and I forgive you for all the times you’ve hurt me.”
I said, “Mother, isn’t that beautiful? Now say that back to Daddy.” And suddenly she clammed up. She didn’t want to say it.
I said, “Mother, you’re soon going to be before God. You don’t want to come before God without forgiving everybody.”
She said, “I forgive everybody.”
I said, “But do you forgive Daddy?” and she became silent again.
Then Daddy jumped in and said, “Honey, I never fooled around with any other women.”
We all knew that. She even said, “Well I know that, I know that.”
My siblings and I still don’t know how Daddy had hurt Mother. But any married person knows there are many little ways a couple can hurt one another over fifty-four years.
Then I said, “Mother, let’s try this. Put one hand on your heart, and I’m going to pray that your heart gets real soft.” I placed one of my hands on hers, over her heart, and held her other hand and started kissing it.
After about a minute she said, very faintly, “That melts me.”
“What?”
“When you kiss my hand like that, now I’ve got to do it.” After a pause, she continued: “I’m a stubborn woman. All of my life I’ve been a stubborn woman.” (Mother was an Eight on the Enneagram!)
“Well, Mother, we all knew that,” I said. “Now look at Daddy and you tell him.”
So she looked over and she didn’t call him “Daddy,” as she usually did. She spoke to him by name: “Rich, I forgive you.”
I prompted her again: “Mother, the other half—I ask for your forgiveness.”
She started breathing heavily and rapidly. Then she summoned her energy and said, “Rich, I ask your forgiveness.” A few more moments of labored breathing, and she said, “That’s it, that’s it. That’s what I had to do.”
I said to her, “Mother, do you think that was the mesh?”
She replied, “It’s gone! The mesh is gone! And, God, I pray that I mean this forgiveness from my heart.”
Then she said, referring to my two sisters and my sister-in-law, “Tell the girls to do this early and not to wait ‘til now. They’ll understand a woman’s heart and the way a man can hurt a woman.”
Mother was so happy then, and fully ready for death.
That’s the power and the grace of forgiveness. But let’s do it now and not wait until later! Let’s ask for the grace to let go of those grudges and hurts we hold on to. How else will we ever be free? In forgiveness, we live up to our true and deepest dignity. We then operate by a power and a logic not our own. We live out of the True Self and not just the tiny self that is always offended and complaining. Without forgiveness nothing new happens, and we remain frozen in a small past.
 
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."
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Re: Forgiveness

Postby JohnDaniels » Sun Aug 27, 2017 7:04 pm

Brock,

This is big on a personal level for me.

I'm pleased you brought this post to the top again. What a powerful message. I can see it in my own life and I'm sure others can see it in their life as well, especially the ending with:

"That’s the power and the grace of forgiveness. But let’s do it now and not wait until later! Let’s ask for the grace to let go of those grudges and hurts we hold on to. How else will we ever be free? In forgiveness, we live up to our true and deepest dignity. We then operate by a power and a logic not our own. We live out of the True Self and not just the tiny self that is always offended and complaining. Without forgiveness nothing new happens, and we remain frozen in a small past."

This all brings to mind one of those ex-wife's I had. She's still filled with guilt and hate and the decades she wasted living in hate and torment. After a year of AA I forgave her but she never forgave me. I let it go and remarried a gentle, lovely lady. Decades later the ex's hate has multiplied and is eating her alive. My wife see's her as a sick "whatever". The ex can look at water and freeze it! She would walk out the back door during a bbq and the birds would stop singing. I don't bring these things up for any other reason than if you are a young member (in your 20's to 40's) reading this, don't be a stubborn ass hole, ask God to do for you or your ex what you or your ex cannot do for herself. Turn it over and let it go. Hate and resentment will destroy lives. Ask for peace of mind for both of you.
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