• Hazelden Renewal Center

Letter From the Editor: A Season For For-giving

The Holiday season is traditionally a season of giving. But what greater gift than giving could there be but for-giving? One of the definitions of the word forgive in Webster’s New World College Dictionary is “To give up resentment against or the desire to punish; stop being angry with; pardon.” Yet, if someone has “wronged” us how can we possibly remove that sense of anger, or desire to punish, when they have created such an effect in us? How can we let go, and move on? Or, what if the person you are asking forgiveness from doesn’t give you the … Continue reading

The Gift of Self-Forgiveness

“If I had to live my life again, I’d make all the same mistakes—only sooner.” — Tallulah Bankhead (1902-1968) One of the most hidden and powerful aspects of human identity is how many of us have shame and harsh judgments towards ourselves. Some of us are barely aware of our self-contempt; others are drowning in a sea of self-revulsion and have no way to save ourselves. Most of us alternate between denial and harsh self-criticism. We are so overwhelmed by this self-devaluation that we often unconsciously choose to not acknowledge it in ourselves. Often, we don’t know why we hate … Continue reading

Forgiveness: The Far Side of Anger

forgiveness

Anger acts as thief. It steals away serenity, ability to focus, and the ability for self-awareness. After 9/11 Fred Maples, like most of us, felt angry about what happened. But then he did something that may perplex (or perhaps anger) many seeking a just revenge on these terrorists who caused such suffering: he began to pray for them. Such a forgiving frame of mind doesn’t come easy, he says. It was the result of a journey through his own anger and into a level of self-awareness that ultimately helped him see terrorists in a new way. “Forgiveness,” says Maples, “is … Continue reading

Developing a Forgiving Attitude Sets You Free

forgiveness

David Richo, in his book, The Five Things We Cannot Change, claims that we must accept certain realities.  Among these are: All things change and end. Things do not always go according to plan. People are not loving and loyal all the time. Pain and suffering are a part of life. Life is not fair. I will add some additional realities. All of us will inevitably make some mistakes.  We will sometimes hurt someone else, and also ourselves. We have all experienced pain and disappointment because others have either intentionally or unintentionally hurt us.  This might include parents, siblings, teachers, … Continue reading