This spiritual practice is called The Forgiveness Scale. This practice helps you cultivate the necessary willingness to experience the blessings of total forgiveness. The Forgiveness Scale is based on a scale of 0 to 100 percent. You begin by choosing a person to focus on. You can choose yourself, which is always a good idea. Or you can choose anyone else, even someone with whom you have only a slight grievance. You’ll notice there isn’t anyone in your life that you don’t have a bit of a grievance with.
Prepare yourself as you would for meditation. Ground yourself, breathe fully, and let your body relax. Bring your focus person into your awareness. When you are ready, ask yourself, “From 0 to 100 percent, how much have I forgiven this person?” Record your first answer to this question. Be honest with yourself. The goal here is not to be good, or to get it right, or to be spiritual, or to be nice. You are not trying to play a role. You want to set yourself free. Every answer is a good answer, because it gives you something to work with.
Let’s imagine you have chosen yourself as the focus person. And let’s say your score is 72 percent. First, notice what it’s like to be at 72 percent. How does being at 72 percent affect the way you live your life? How does it affect your happiness, your health, and your success? How does being at 72 percent affect your relationships with others – your capacity to be intimate, to trust, and to forgive? How does being at 72 percent affect your relationship to food, abundance, money, creativity, and your spirituality?
Now here’s the next step. In your mind, take the number up from 72 to 80 percent. You can do this one percentage point at a time, if you like. Once you reach 80 percent, affirm I am willing to forgive myself 80 percent. Say this a few times and monitor your responses. Notice any physical sensations, any feelings, and any thoughts. Stay here until it feels comfortable. And then keep going farther along the scale, to 85 percent and 90 percent and 95 percent.
Every step you take on The Forgiveness Scale helps you to let go of the basic fear I am not loveable and to experience the basic truth I am loveable. Every step helps you to see that life loves you, and that life wants you to be free of guilt, pain and fear. Every step helps you to experience healing, grace and inspiration that will benefit you and others.
Imagine being at 100 percent and saying “I am willing to forgive myself 100 percent.” The Forgiveness Scale is all about your willingness to release the blocks to forgiveness, and to experience love. In a way, you are rehearsing forgiveness. It’s an act of imagination. However, imagination is very powerful. “Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life’s coming attractions,” said Albert Einstein. And so it is.
We recommend that you use The Forgiveness Scale to assess your level of self-forgiveness and forgiveness of others. Ask yourself:
From 0 to 100 percent, how much have I forgiven myself? From 0 to 100 percent, how much have I forgiven my mother?
From 0 to 100 percent, how much have I forgiven my father?
From 0 to 100 percent, how much have I forgiven my sibling?
From 0 to 100 percent, how much have I forgiven my friend, ex-partner, neighbor?
From 0 to 100 percent, how much have I forgiven everyone?
Always begin with the question “From 0 to 100 percent, how much have I forgiven [myself or name of person]?” Start with the first percentage you thought of and begin your journey along the scale from there. Even a shift of one percent on The Forgiveness Scale will help you let go of the past and create a better future.
We encourage you to do this exercise once a day for seven days. During those seven days, notice what happens in your life. Notice how you show up. Notice how people respond to you. Notice the little miracles. One reason why people often describe forgiveness as a miracle is that when you forgive one person or one thing, it seems to change your relationship to everyone and everything.
Excerpted from Life Loves You