Colin Tipping, creator of Radical Forgiveness and someone I frequently like to quote because I so appreciate the way he looks at the world, sent this to his followers last week. I found it fascinating and so pass it on to you.
This appeared on the Christian Broadcasting News website. What it says, of course, is what we have been saying for years but, again, it is strong evidence that the medical profession is finally catching up.
“Unforgiveness is classified in medical books as a disease. According to Dr. Steven Standiford, chief of surgery at the Cancer Treatment Centers of America, refusing to forgive makes people sick and keeps them that way.”
With that in mind, forgiveness therapy is now being used to help treat diseases, such as cancer.
“It’s important to treat emotional wounds or disorders because they really can hinder someone’s reactions to the treatments, even someone’s willingness to pursue treatment,” Standiford explained.
Of all cancer patients, 61 percent have forgiveness issues. Of those, more than half are severe, according to research by Dr. Michael Barry, a pastor and the author of the book, The Forgiveness Project.
“Harboring these negative emotions, this anger and hatred, creates a state of chronic anxiety,” he said.
“Chronic anxiety very predictably produces excess adrenaline and cortisol, which deplete the production of natural killer cells, which is your body’s foot soldier in the fight against cancer,” he explained.
The fact is, of course, this applies to everyone, not just cancer patients. What happened last week in South Carolina was a testimony to that. It was demonstrated to the whole world what a little bit of forgiveness can do to heal a whole community.
I don’t want to sound like a broken record, but I have to say again that doing a Radical Forgiveness worksheet on any issue causing stress will keep you clear of toxic negative energy. Also, I definitely recommend committing the 4-Steps to Radical Forgiveness to memory so you can run it through your mind the minute something crops up that upsets you. They are:
- Look what I created!
- I notice my feelings and my judgments but love myself anyway.
- I am willing to see the perfection in the situation.
- I choose peace.
It’s amazing how this can transform the situation immediately.
You can download his Radical Forgiveness worksheet for free from his website at www.radicalforgiveness.com/freestuff. Other free worksheets include “Radical Manifestation”, “Money Consciousness”, “Self Forgiveness/Self Acceptance”, “Radical Transformation” and more. Having used the Radical Forgiveness method myself several times, I can attest to how powerful and healing it is.
Even without using a worksheet to help remove blame and resentment from our hearts, forgiveness and understanding play a huge part in leading a healthy life to its fullest.
One of my clients had a huge shock last fall that could have turned her bitter and unforgiving for years, if not the rest of her life. For clarity’s sake, know that I write this with her permission.
Her husband of a decade one day told her, out of the blue, that he hadn’t been happy for years, didn’t love her and was leaving. There had been no difference in behavior from him, no warnings that told her something was wrong, so she was not just shocked but appalled and felt incredibly betrayed when he just walked out. As did her family who had helped him establish himself in his business.
She could have stayed in blame and unforgiveness but she chose to see that he was indeed in pain, although it wasn’t because of her but because of a childhood trauma that he didn’t want to face. Not facing it as it came up to him again and again became more important to him than dealing with his current reality. So he ran from it and her to create his own fantasy world where the trauma never happened.
Even his own family couldn’t reach him and understood what he was saying about the marriage and his wife wasn’t true but was a symptom of him running from himself.
In realizing what was going on with him, instead of becoming angry, she moved into forgiveness and understanding. That didn’t stop the hurt, but it allowed the hurt to have its day and then move on. Their divorce will be complete within months and she is doing very well, although still concerned about him. He is not doing very well. But that is something he has to deal with himself and no one can help him.
It’s easy to stay, and sometimes wallow in, hurt and betrayal. It’s like a blanket that helps us get through. Seeing any wrong or slight from the other person’s point of view, even if that view is so very different from our own, helps in knowing we are all here to teach each other. The lessons best learned are the negative ones.
So for old hurts and new ones, big injustices and small, try genuinely standing in forgiveness and understanding. This attitude not only heals yourself, it heals the world.
With love and gratitude…