Forty years ago my husband and I went to see a lady for a karmic counseling reading. This was one of our first introductions to the idea of reincarnation and also, she told us something that no one else would have known. Time passed and we became very involved in her mystical school. A few years later my husband was offered a teaching position 1700 miles from Seattle and we moved to Omaha, Nebraska. As the years passed we stayed in contact and remained good friends with our “spiritual teacher.” Then many, many years later, Spirit tempted Dennis with the possibility of returning to the Pacific Northwest. We moved back to the Seattle area and once again became involved in the mystical school. At that time I was going through a tremendous amount of stress (Chiron return) and I just couldn’t handle being part of a spiritual organization that was very controlling. Consequently, my teacher told me off in no uncertain terms stating that I was sabotaging my husband’s future as he was to take over her mystical school. At that time it was so difficult for me to forgive and forget as two members of our family continued to attend weekly church services, classes, and outings. I knew that it was important and necessary to forgive her, but I was a prisoner of my thoughts that went round and round in my head.

If only I had known about the Bach Flower Essences then, they would have benefitted me greatly – White Chestnut for the churning thoughts, along with Holly for the intense anger that ensued. If one’s anger turns to hatred and/or jealously, then Holly is the remedy of choice. If resentment and/or bitterness are involved, then Willow is also an appropriate remedy. Each time we have a negative emotion, it is important to identify what the emotion is in order to determine the correct remedy.

Sri Chinmoy (1931-2007 author, artist and promoter of world peace) left us a beautiful quote:
• “Forgive to be happy. Forget the sad experience to be permanently happy.”

I am happy to say that the incident is now almost gone from my memory.

I had another opportunity to forgive when my Father passed away. A week after his death and funeral I received a phone call from a family member telling me that he had died. I was shaking and in terrible shock. Even meditating did not seem to help. The remedy, Star of Bethlehem, would have brought me a lot of comfort had I known about it.

A couple of years later my Mother made her transition, and again I was told after the fact. This news was followed by a letter from the attorney stating that I was intentionally left out of the will. It was another opportunity to forgive and forget that became easier as time passed. My dear friend, Jean, helped me as she pointed out the advantage of the situation which involved my learning detachment. I have my Mother to thank for enabling me to learn that lesson. Wayne Dyer tells us, “When you change the way you look at things the things you look at change.”

Not only is it important to forgive those who have hurt or harmed us, it is also very important to forgive ourselves. “Forgiveness is the most important energy in the world, yet so many of you cannot forgive yourselves for making the wrong choices – or mistakes if that word must be used.” Maitreya (Channeled by Margaret McElroy, Maitreya Newsletter #220, January 5, 2009)

I am reminded of two amazing stories of forgiveness: In October of 2014, a student at Marysville-Pilchuck High School in Washington State shot five of his friends (four died) before shooting and killing himself. Michelle Galasso’s daughter, Zoe, was one of the victims who died. After the shooting Michelle Galasso hugged the killer’s Mother and told her that she loved her. In a news conference Michelle said, “In order for me to heal from this, I have to forgive because I cannot waste my life hating or being angry. I just can’t.”

Louis Zamperini (1917-2014; Olympic distance runner, POW, and inspirational speaker) survived two years in a Japanese prisoner of war camp where he was repeatedly beaten and tortured. After World War II, Louis returned to his California home and was haunted by nightmares of strangling his captors. Time passed and his wife encouraged him to renew his religious beliefs. Remembering how his belief in God helped him to get through his years as a POW, he was eventually able to forgive his captors and even returned to Japan to forgive them personally. After forgiving them his nightmares completely stopped!

On this Forgiveness Day (May 1, declared by Maitreya, March 3, 2001), may we all be so blessed as to forgive ourselves and those who have hurt and/or harmed us.