On New Year’s morning of 1996, the most awful of phone calls came from his brother, Mike, to Everett Worthington, the psychologist who has written defining book on forgiveness. When Dr. Worthington arrived in Knoxville, he found that his aged mother had been beaten to death with a crowbar and base ball bat. She was raped with a wine bottle, and her house was trashed. His successful struggle to forgive would be an inspiration, coming from any quarter. Coming from a leading investigator of forgiveness, it dwells in the high country of moral teaching, and it is recommended to those interested in forgiving but they are not able to do so. Happyho also provides best Meditation classes in Noida and Delhi NCR India area
Worthington describes a five step process. He calls REACH;
R Stands for recall the hurt, in as objective a way as you can. Do not think of the other person as evil. Do not wallow in self pity. Take deep, slow and calming breaths as you visualise the event. Worthington conjured up a possible scenario to visualise;
E stands for Empathise. try to understand from the perpetrators point of view, why this person hurt you. This is not easy, but make up a plausible story that the transgressor might tell if challenged to explain to help you do this, remember the following:
- When others feel their survival is threatened they will hurt innocents.
- People who attach others are themselves usually in a state of fear, worry and hurt.
- The situation a person finds himself in and not his underlying personality, can lead to hurting.
- People often do not think when they hurt others; they just lash out.
A stands for giving the altruistic gift of forgiveness, another difficult step. First recall a time you transgressed, felt guilty and were forgiven. This was a gift you were given by another person because you needed it, and you were grateful for this gift. Giving this gift usually makes us feel better. As the saying goes;
If you want to be happy………
………..for an hour take a nap.
……….for a day, go fishing.
………. For a month, get married
………..For a year, get an inheritance.
………..For a lifetime, help someone.
C Stands for commit yourself to forgive publicly. In worthington’s groups, his clients write a ” Certificate of forgiveness” , write a letter of forgiveness to the offender, write it in their diary, write a poem or song, or tell a trusted friend what they have done. These are all contracts of forgiveness that lead to the final step.
H stands for hold on to forgiveness. This another difficult step because memory of the event will surely recur. Forgiveness is not eraser; rather, it is a change in the tagline that a memory carries. It is important to realise that the memories do not mean unforgiveness. Don’t dwell vengefully on the memories, and don’t wallow in them. Remind yourself that you have forgiven and read the documents you composed.