A lot of it is being said to have happened through self-love, self-discovery, and self-acceptance. It is said that forgiveness eases our emotional pain, pain caused by other’s actions.
Accepting the events and circumstances can help us lead a life with peace, love, and empathy.
I have come across many people who tell me, “I can forget but cannot forgive,” or vice versa. Checked on umpteen bits of advice on letting go, forgetting it, moving on, etc. But couldn’t get clarity on how! How can we forgive someone for hurting us, our feelings?
Here’s my version –
Surprisingly people do not forgive as a process or an action. It is layers of various experiences and exposures to innumerable aspects that an incident is merely a minuscule object that hardly occupies your mind for attention anymore.
Imagine a pile of 100 books (think of it as life). The topmost book is the recent experience, incident, or encounter that made you learn something new today. Now imagine every book representing some encounters in your life. Takes time, doesn’t it?
Now take the last book in that pile. You have not forgotten about it but a large part of that memory has become blurred. To reiterate the exact version of the book, you may have to go back and read it again.
Similarly, our exposure to novelty is so strong that we are enough jaded to think of it as a huge emotional roadblock by the time we go back to the incident. Life never stops; we are a part of an incident or say that the incident was part of our lives.
We experience something new daily, either good or bad; happy or sad; hurt or heal. No one ever experiences the same adventure daily. Sometimes we remember it and sometimes not; some incidents make it to our memory, and some not. And just like that, we raise our pile of books even higher with new additions.
We add so many new memories daily, experience so many emotions that the ones at the end of our pile tend to fade. We tend to forget what it felt like when we were in that situation. You can’t read the same book daily and can’t dwell on something regularly. You can’t let one event or one person make decisions for you. Knowingly or unknowingly, everyone moves at some point in time.
So technically, we have neither forgotten nor forgiven, but over time our priorities have changed. We feel that we have subsided our anger, but no, we have actually moved on; we have stopped criticizing the actions of others.
It is a matter of time. And by moving on or forgiving, we are doing a favor to ourselves. No one loves to live with the baggage of past and unfortunate events that hold us back.
So it is for our own good, satisfaction, and well-being that we forgive and forget, and not hold onto a bad memory unless you want to experience anger and bitterness in your life.