My friends, I am about to try and make a case for forgiveness being the single most important choice we can make in the cause for peace. I am speaking, of course, from my personal experience and years of observation, both outwardly and inwardly. It takes both you see, and what I have come to believe about forgiveness is that without it we cannot heal, and healing is what the world needs. Allow me to elaborate:
If I truly desire peace for myself, and all others as well, I am forced to confront my relationship with my self first. I can't lie to myself and simultaneously be honest with you. It just doesn't work that way. Furthermore, if I want peace for others, I must choose to be peace. In choosing to be peace, I am now confronted with my relationship with my brothers and sisters.
When I take time to heal by forgiving myself first and making peace with myself, I open up my true self to reconciliation with everything that is. I am in a better position to offer peace when I know what it looks like, and self forgiveness leads me to that awareness.
There exists quite an exquisite mystery for me in that, I want to be a teacher of peace yet I am discovering that, in the process, I am actually learning to be peace. As I learn more about peace, I gain a higher understanding of how it applies to the healing process. I can say I want peace, but my choices will indicate my level of commitment to it. When I make forgiveness of others a priority, I avoid the unnecessary delay in reaching peace between us.
Think of those who, for you, represent an opportunity for healing. Decide to offer forgiveness if it is needed and watch the healing begin. Don't have expectations of what the one you forgive will do in response. That is of less importance than for you to reach out in love. I am convinced that we will find true peace by making peace with ourselves, and by forgiving instead of resenting, we make it easier for others to realize their own peace. In this exercise we allow healing for us all.
Namaste' -- jb