My finger was pointed at others for a long time. I was the way I was because of them, or so I thought. Wrongs inflicted by others were my frequent justification for how I behaved. Sometimes what I did was worse than what had been done to me.
Wisdom that I was behaving badly did not suddenly descend on me one day. Instead, a morsel at a time my mind and soul learned better. When I stopped letting my field of view be filled with what others had done, I began to get an honest look at myself. A little at a time the truth became mine that is contained in the saying “hating is like swallowing poison and expecting the other person to die”.
Hatred is like a long, dark shadow.
Not even the person it falls upon
knows where it comes from, in most cases.
It is like a two-edged sword.
When you cut the other person,
you cut yourself.
The more violently you hack at the other person,
the more violently you hack at yourself.
It can often be fatal.
But it is not easy to dispose of.
Please be careful…
It is very dangerous.
Once it has taken root in your heart,
hatred is the most difficult thing
in the world to shake off.
From “The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle”
by Haruki Murakami
… forgiveness is NOT a gift you give to another, but rather something you do inside of yourself, for yourself. The other person need never know. Forgiveness doesn’t mean reconciliation – nor does it mean you have to allow a behavior that can hurt you to continue to hurt you. Forgiveness is, in essence, the acknowledgment inside of yourself that the person who has wronged you in some way is a fallible human being – and that, like a human being, they made a mistake worthy of your forgiveness. Forgiveness sets you free.
Forgiveness lets you remove the pain you carry inside of you that you feel was done by another’s wrongdoing. The other person need not admit the wrongdoing. The other person need not make amends. The other person need not do anything. Forgiveness is something done inside of yourself, to release you from the pain of the wrongdoing. MD Lynn http://voices.yahoo.com/forgiveness-gift-give-yourself-84466.html?cat=5
Being an imperfect human being, all my animosities toward others have not evaporated. However a considerable amount of such loathing is long gone. For others such feelings are considerably reduced. And, there are still a few old wounds that sting. In earnest I am working on those. I am grateful to be free of the majority of the shackles holding grudges put on me. Even the chains of remaining blame are growing lighter, day by day. Gratefully, the light of forgiveness is doing away with my chains of resentment.
Darkness cannot drive out darkness;
only light can do that. ]
Hate cannot drive out hate;
only love can do that.
Martin Luther King, Jr.