Forgiveness is the key to happiness.
People love to play the victim. We have been playing the “blame game” since we were little children. We would complain, “Look what ________ did to me!” We want injustice rectified. We want sympathy for our wounds. We want the perceived perpetrator punished.
In Alcoholic Anonymous we are told to take our own inventory not take everyone else’s. In step four it is suggested that we do a fearless moral inventory. We are encouraged to identify and acknowledge our wrongs and then in step 6 be ready to forgive ourselves.
Forgiveness, as described in A Course In Miracles, is being willing to give up making other people and circumstances responsible for our unhappiness. In other words, we give up playing the victim and take responsibility for how we manage our response to the assaults, attacks, and harm inflicted on us by ourselves and others. The decision about how to respond makes all the difference between peace and anguish.
In Unitarian Universalism, we covenant together to affirm and promote justice, equity and compassion in human relations. The key component of this affirmation and promotion is forgiveness for without it we are still a prisoner of resentment, grievance, anger, guilt, and fear. Unitarian Universalism is not a faith of victims nor a believer in sin from which members need to be redeemed. Rather UUs put their faith in the unconditional and universal Love of their Transcendent Source.
Today, it is suggested that we take ten minutes at the beginning and end of the day to reflect on the idea that forgiveness is the key to happiness. We are asked to look past the mistakes to the Divine Spark within every person. As Elizabeth Kubler Ross is reported to have said one time with a laugh, “I’m not okay and you’re not okay, but that’s okay.”