Is Forgiveness Worthwhile? And How Buddhist Philosophies Can Support Forgiveness

‘To err is human. To forgive, divine’. Alexander Pope

Late summer every year I go on retreat for a week on The Isle of Wight. It gives me an opportunity to reflect, refocus and recharge my batteries. I spend my week alone walking in the beautiful countryside and along the deserted beaches of South West Wight, meditating, reading spiritual texts and writing my contemplations in my journal. I eat a light, raw food diet and have a daily Epsom Salts bath to help detoxify my body (Epsom Salts baths are said to draw out toxins and have many health benefits).

Every year I have a specific focus for the week’s retreat. This year’s focus was forgiveness. This gave me an opportunity to bring to mind all the people, present and past and from every area of my life, whom I was holding some angst towards, both big and small. I then went through a process of forgiveness with each one. It was a cathartic experience. Moreover, the value I gained from it was a lightening of the mental load I was carrying that was weighing me, not them, down. Read More

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