Are you mastering the practice of unconditional love? Release is the heart of forgiveness. This means you no longer think about or need to do anything to resolve a relationship or conflict. Sounds simple right? Indeed, studies such as the Stanford Forgiveness Project are proving the effectiveness of this process in promoting mental health.
One of the most famous Christian Scriptures tells us that Peter asked Jesus how many times one needed to forgive, “Seven?” Jesus responds that it is not seven but seventy-seven times (Matthew 18:21). Therefore, you might think of forgiveness as an ongoing process.
Five levels of forgiveness are often experienced.
- First, You stop thinking continually about the person or situation. Your strong emotions subside.
- Next, You are able to let go when that old thought and feeling rise up in response to a person or situation.
- Then, you are able to send loving thoughts to yourself in the situation.
- With some time, you have practiced enough letting go to send loving thoughts to the other that has caused your distress.
- Finally, you cease thinking about this person or event at all.
This conscious letting go practice in Buddhism is called metta meditation. Increasingly, physicians and people working with mental health are using this type of meditation as a healing exercise. In addition, science and experience agree it works.
“Big dreams. Small Steps.”
This article is supported by Vantage Point Recovery, a lifestyle and recovery management center located in the Los Angeles / Southern California area. We welcome you to our community of readers as we improve our health and our lives, together.
Bobbi Rudin, a mind body spirit healthcare writer and instructor, shared this blog.