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Mind-body medicine

The Power of Forgiveness in Cultivating Health and Happiness

Thursday, February 28, 2008 by: Peter Ragnar
Tags: mind-body medicine, health news, Natural News

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(NewsTarget) It was about ten years ago, as I remember. The sky was a crisp blue. The leaves were fluttering in a gentle breeze. The shafts of sunlight made them appear as dancers in dresses of gold, red, orange, and green. The day was peaceful and serene until I saw him.

When he saw me, he ran with gun in hand. I knew where he was headed so I took a short cut and was waiting for him on the top of the rise. His breathing was labored and loud as he climbed out of
the brush. His face paled with fear when he saw me. Not so much from my physical presence – for he appeared bigger, younger, and more muscular than myself. He was afraid because he knew he was wrong.

There had been a number of dead bears found with their paws cut off, teeth pulled out, and bellies cut open, just left rotting in the forest. These wasted bears had been slaughtered just for their
gall bladders and a few souvenirs. You can just imagine burly men with yellow teeth bragging in a bar about their bear tooth necklace. However, no one dared utter a word about the $2,500 they got for the gall bladder. It seems that folks in China and elsewhere were willing to pay that much for what was believed to be an aphrodisiac. There was a very dangerous black market at work; so dangerous that these desperate men had shot at park rangers, game wardens, my wife, and me.

"You've got a might fast pair of legs there young man," I said as I extended my arm to help pull him up the hill. Suspicious, he hesitated for a moment. But he then cautiously accepted my hand.

"I was just seeing if I could spot some deer..."

I broke off his excuse, "Where is your gun?"

"Oh, I don't have any gun," he replied.

I knew he must have hidden it. Now the game warden would be waiting and watching for his return to retrieve it, which was highly unlikely now that I had caught him.

"You don't need to explain your actions. Here, I would like to share a story with you. Once, a man saw two mice going down a path together. The odd thing was they were both holding a straw, a single straw held between the two of them in their mouths. Well, the man picked up a rock and thoughtlessly hurled it at the mice. He ended up killing just one."

Now here's the interesting part, as I touched the bear poacher on the shoulder I continued, "The
surviving mouse began running in circles while still holding the straw in its mouth. The man, now curious about the strange behavior, picked up the mouse and was shocked to tears at what he saw. The surviving mouse was blind! At that moment, you could say in a twinkling of an eye – the man was transformed.

"What if someone, say a buddy of yours, shot and killed one of your dogs? Would you forgive them?"

His face flushed as he blurted out, "Forgive? Hell no!"

"What if it was by accident," I asked.

"Well, then it would be different."

"Accidents happen when we don't understand the gravity of our actions. When we are unconscious of the consequences of our behavior we harm living things. Son, every bear, deer, and bird is as precious to me as your dogs are to you. I hope I'm not wrong, but I do not think you are a bad person anymore than the man who killed the mouse. So, I forgive you for being here. Just promise me you'll think about my little story and not return."

He looked down at the ground. When he raised his head, he shook my hand and softly said, "Thank you."

Why did I forgive him? I first forgave him for myself. Who of us enjoys a sleepless night, turning and twisting in restless resentment over a real or perceived wrong? I choose forgiveness because I also choose mental and physical health. It is the resentments, the anger, the regrets, which become the cancer of the soul and body. Cancer is a disease of anger and fearful imaginings.

All emotions that are not colored by love are toxic.

If you carry an unforgiving attitude to sleep with you, you're programming your subconscious to create disease. It will poison an otherwise sweet disposition, ruin your personality, and increase your rate of aging. So, from the standpoint of rational self interest – cultivate forgiveness.

The purpose of forgiveness is threefold.

1. To create healthy human relationships

2. To bolster integrity and honesty of others

3. To alleviate negative subconscious

To become a noble human, to actually make a difference with your life, to become that one improved human unit, you must practice forgiveness. Forgiveness requires total detachment from negative
past events. If you can step aside from the failures of others, you'll walk in the light of day.

I do not doubt the courage this takes. Nor do I doubt the healing it creates.

Forgiveness isn't easy when we want to cry, "Hell, no!" But as I see it, that is the price we pay to become human.

In the words of Mark Twain, "Let us endeavor so to live that when we come to die even the undertaker will be sorry."

Forgive? Yes – Forever!

About the author

Peter is a most prolific author, having more than 25 books and many courses on human excellence, fitness, and health to his credit. He has been a frequent guest on David Wolf’s The Best Day Ever show.
Additionally, Peter was a 20 time honored guest of syndicated radio talk show host, Bob McCauley’s Achieving Great Health, and has a regular column in the magazine, What Is Enlightenment? titled, Peter Ragnar on Health.
Peter has inspired untold thousands of people by his teachings and Magnetic Qi Gong.
You may have seen his many articles and interviews in Body Mind and Spirit, Inside Kung Fu and Black Belt Magazines and a host of other international publications.

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