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Forgiveness - Not That Easy

Author: Dr. Ali Khwaja

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Forgiveness - Not That Easy

I have often heard people say, “Oh, yes, Dr. Ali, it is fine for you professionals and counselors to say all this. Sounds very nice in theory. But its not all that easy to practice you know.” Agreed. If it was easy, you would not require me to write this or for you to read it. You would have understood and practiced it long back.

Many things in life are difficult. You may not remember it, but when you were a few months old, learning to walk was a tough task – but you persevered, tried and tried again, fell down a few times, received help from your parents – and eventually did it! Today walking comes to you as naturally as breathing. The same is true of most other skills that you learnt, many other realities of life that you faced and learnt crucial lessons from. Forgiving also is not easy – but once you learn the art and skill of forgiveness, it lasts you a lifetime.

There is another word of caution: I have often come across people who say, “Generally I am a very forgiving person. So many people have done so many bad things to me, and I have forgiven them all. But THIS ONE person who hurt me so badly – I can NEVER forgive HIM.” You are only fooling yourself when you say that you are a forgiving person. Probably the things that others did to you were so insignificant that forgiveness came naturally – like indifference comes to us naturally when we are not interested in cultivating a relationship with someone. The true test of your capacity to forgive came only with THIS ONE person. It is here that you actually NEED to forgive. The need is yours. It is not to “forgive him”, but to “forgive.” Think over it. You may not be convinced just by reading these few pages. Keep working on the pro’s and con’s of my message to you. Ask yourself a very important question: “What do I gain by forgiving, and what do I gain by NOT forgiving?’ Eventually the answer will be obvious.

Once you start on this journey, make forgiveness a habit. Let it come so easily that you stop getting hurt by others’ actions. You become the master of your own destiny. You have risen above the level where people can hurt you emotionally. It is such a blissful feeling – and it is worth struggling hard and long to attain that state. It is only difficult, not impossible.

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