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Maslow 07-20-2007 09:43 AM

Forgiveness
 
3 Attachment(s)
I was listening to an audio-book on insight meditation while walking the dog this morning, and on it, Jack Kornfield was talking about forgiveness. He said, "Forgiveness is giving up hope for a better past."

Often, our anxiety is the result of not being able to accept something that happened to us -- whether it's something that happened during our childhood or maybe a wisecrack someone made earlier in the day. We dwell on it until it triggers anxiety or even hatred. Ruminating about how someone hurt us doesn't hurt the other person at all; it only hurts us. The best revenge is forgiveness.

We can't change our past. Forgiveness is giving up hope for a better past. :)

leppardess 07-20-2007 02:23 PM

Re: Forgiveness
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Maslow
I was listening to an audio-book on insight meditation while walking the dog this morning, and on it, Jack Kornfield was talking about forgiveness. He said, "Forgiveness is giving up hope for a better past."

Often, our anxiety is the result of not being able to accept something that happened to us -- whether it's something that happened during our childhood or maybe a wisecrack someone made earlier in the day. We dwell on it until it triggers anxiety or even hatred. Ruminating about how someone hurt us doesn't hurt the other person at all; it only hurts us. The best revenge is forgiveness.

We can't change our past. Forgiveness is giving up hope for a better past. :)

Exactly. I used to hold grudges for years in the past towards people who had hurt me but, in the end, they weren't affected at all. It was hurting me to hold onto these bad feelings.

Quote:

The best revenge is forgiveness.
I like that quote a great deal :boogie

FairleighCalm 07-20-2007 05:22 PM

I need to read this everyday.

Maslow 07-21-2007 07:25 AM

re: Forgiveness
 
3 Attachment(s)
In case anyone out there wants to get in to meditation, the audio-book is Buddhist Meditation for Beginners by Jack Kornfield. It contains guided meditations and stories that make you feel good. Very relaxing.

Maslow 07-22-2007 07:23 AM

re: Forgiveness
 
3 Attachment(s)
I realized something last night while listening to Jack Kornfield. Although I've tried to forgive the people who hurt me, I still suffer by ruminating about things that happened to me. It occurred to me that I was forgiving the wrong person. It wasn't the other people I was mad at; I was mad at myself for not dealing with the events in a way that fostered my self-respect. I know that I have the ability to deal with difficult situations, but sometimes my anxiety gets the better of me and I lose my dignity. My sleeplessness compounded my problems.

Last night, it occurred to me why forgiving the people who hurt me did make me feel better -- it was me that needed forgiving. I was angry with myself for not handling the situations better. So last night I forgave myself.

... and then I punched myself in the nose and wrestled myself to the ground. :lol

leppardess 07-22-2007 10:52 AM

re: Forgiveness
 
:lol *imagines Maslow punching himself...*

Yeah, I agree, a lot of it has to do with forgiving ourselves, in addition to forgiving the ones that hurt us. I find that, oddly enough, it's harder for me to forgive myself than to forgive the people that have hurt me :con Maybe because I'm my own worst critic.... :stu

tinselhair 07-22-2007 12:59 PM

Re: re: Forgiveness
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Maslow
I realized something last night while listening to Jack Kornfield. Although I've tried to forgive the people who hurt me, I still suffer by ruminating about things that happened to me. It occurred to me that I was forgiving the wrong person. It wasn't the other people I was mad at; I was mad at myself for not dealing with the events in a way that fostered my self-respect. I know that I have the ability to deal with difficult situations, but sometimes my anxiety gets the better of me and I lose my dignity. My sleeplessness compounded my problems.

Last night, it occurred to me why forgiving the people who hurt me did make me feel better -- it was me that needed forgiving. I was angry with myself for not handling the situations better. So last night I forgave myself.

... and then I punched myself in the nose and wrestled myself to the ground. :lol

I love your post. And I can relate wholeheartedly. I also am planning to get back into meditation.

Star :yes

tomcoldaba 07-22-2007 06:19 PM

Re: re: Forgiveness
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Maslow
I realized something last night while listening to Jack Kornfield. Although I've tried to forgive the people who hurt me, I still suffer by ruminating about things that happened to me. It occurred to me that I was forgiving the wrong person. It wasn't the other people I was mad at; I was mad at myself for not dealing with the events in a way that fostered my self-respect. I know that I have the ability to deal with difficult situations, but sometimes my anxiety gets the better of me and I lose my dignity. My sleeplessness compounded my problems.

Last night, it occurred to me why forgiving the people who hurt me did make me feel better -- it was me that needed forgiving. I was angry with myself for not handling the situations better. So last night I forgave myself.

I agree with Maslow. I have forgiven folks who hurt me but I am having a hard time forgiving myself. For being too trusting of other people and not being assertive. I must work on forgiving myself.

Thank you for the excellent post Maslow

Maslow 07-23-2007 09:05 AM

re: Forgiveness
 
3 Attachment(s)
Good to see a new Cricket in here! Welcome to SAS, Tom!

It's taken me a long time to get to the point where I can forgive myself. I think first you have to get to the point where you actually like yourself and feel that you are worthy of respect and forgiveness. That's a tough thing to achieve if all your life you've been beating up on yourself.

First you have to accept everything about yourself -- the good and the bad. When you can't accept something about yourself, the result is anxiety and sometimes depression.

UltraShy 07-26-2007 04:32 AM

Re: Forgiveness
 
4 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by leppardess
Quote:

The best revenge is forgiveness.
I like that quote a great deal :boogie

I disagree, but unfortunately the best revenge is illegal. Burning my sister-in-law at the stake like a witch would be the best.

Atticus 07-26-2007 07:33 AM

Re: re: Forgiveness
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Maslow
First you have to accept everything about yourself -- the good and the bad. When you can't accept something about yourself, the result is anxiety and sometimes depression.

This seems to be where I get stuck. I think I've forgiven the people who either damaged me or who should have helped me atr some point when I was a kid and not responsible. My treatment by others, and I mean overt things like abuse or bullying, was never really a big issue for me.

So the causes of my limitations aren't typically other people, or specific things that they've done. My problem is me. I struggle to accept the things about myself that hold me back, and I struggle to accept my difficulty accepting things. My head is spinning.

I have some relatively minor money problems, so don't read this literally. But I'm reading a book with a section about a couple looking for a house. They can't afford the houses they want, and they can't want the houses they can afford. They've made decisions that require them to buy a house now, so options like saving a little more don't work. So they're miserable.

Again, I'm not talking about money. I'm talking about the way life is sort of like a market. Your intelligence, personality, looks, health, and motivation are sort of like capital you use to make your life work. It seems like motivation makes up for any lack of anything else, if you just accept those things you're lacking. I don't lack much, but what I don't have bugs the hell out of me, and I pay a price every day for being so bugged. That drains me so much that I might as well not have any talents or traits that I could use for my benefit. I'm left emotionally poor, and unable to "afford" the life I want, or to want the life I seem to be able to "afford".

millenniumman75 07-26-2007 09:22 AM

I ned to work on this - I am a lot better than I was when I had SA real bad.
Forgiveness let us get rid of the pain and start anew - it does NOT resolve the responsibility of what they did. They must work on that themselves!

Maslow 07-26-2007 10:57 AM

Re: re: Forgiveness
 
3 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by Atticus
They can't afford the houses they want, and they can't want the houses they can afford. They've made decisions that require them to buy a house now, so options like saving a little more don't work. So they're miserable.

The problem as I see it is they think that getting the house they want will make them happy and they won't be happy until they get that house. I've known people like that. "If I just get such-and-such, then I'll be happy." But after they get it, there's always something else they need to be happy.

That couple should be happy that they have each other and everything else should be just icing on the cake.

sunshine0505 05-17-2011 12:05 PM

"The best revenge is forgiveness."

I'm going to have to print this thread out... It's like I know forgiveness will be the best route for me to take but I cant let go. I'm going to read this and practice it until it becomes truth in my life!

Reluctant Shaman 03-24-2012 05:48 AM

What do we mean by FORGIVENESS?
 
What do we mean by FORGIVENESS?
Forgiveness is NOT about forgetting, being sweet, letting another person off the hook for something they have done, or not done. It is not a sign that you are condoning such behaviour, or that you are soft or weak. Neither does it necessarily require empathy for the person who hurt us.

I am a therapist working in the area of narcissistic victim abuse. "Forgiveness Work" is an important part of recovery work. I don't want people to forget the experience that has happened. On the contrary, "Remembering" can keep us safe from putting ourselves back in a similar position that is unsafe for us.

Psychologically, when we are unable to "forgive", our abuser still is able to have control over us, in our minds at least. It ties us to them and the past in a way that we are still captives. To be unforgiving requires a lot of energy to hold the anger down or buried in our unconscious. We use mental defense mechanisms to repress our feelings, and although that can work very effectively, the process of repression uses up precious energy that could serve us better in our lives when focused elsewhere.

In the forgiveness process we actually take back our control that was once taken from us through hurt and trauma. When we are able to forgive, we are able to connect back into our power and set ourselves free (Empowerment). Forgivness becomes a gift to yourself.


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