Why Resentment Doesn't Work

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Patria
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Why Resentment Doesn't Work

"Setting others free means setting yourself free, because resentment is really a form of attachment. It is a cosmic truth that it takes two to make a prisoner; the prisoner and a gaoler (Jailor). There is no such thing as being a prisoner on one's own account. Every prisoner must have a gaoler, and the gaoler is as prisoner as he is. When you hold a resentment against anyone, you are bound to that person by a cosmic force, a real though mental chain. You are tied by a cosmic tie to the thing that you hate. The one person perhaps in the whole world whom you most dislike is the very one to whom you are attaching yourself by a hook that is stronger than steel. Is this what you wish? Is this the condition in which you desire to go on living? Remember, you belong to the thing with which you are linked in thought, and at some time or other, if that tie endures, the object of your resentment will be drawn again into your life, perhaps to work further havoc. Do you think you can afford this? Of course, no one can afford such a thing; and so the way is clear. You must cut all such ties, by a clear and spiritual act of forgiveness. You must lose him and let him go. By forgiveness you set yourself free; you save your soul. And because the law of works alike for one and all, you help to save his soul too, making it just so much easier for him to become what he ought to be."

You are reading from the book:
Sermon on the Mount by Emmet Fox

dan1
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I think there is much truth

I think there is much truth in this reflection.

My tradition looks at things a bit differently:

"If your brother sins against you, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him."

There are certain people who have not satisfied the condition. In this case, both judging them and forgiving them are above my pay grade.

Instead, my task is to release my resentment against them, to replace it with acceptance of the past, gratitude for the present and hope for the future. My sponsor pointed out to me at one point that "no one is getting away with anything,*" and in any case, my resentment is hurting the wrong person (me). So I am letting it go. This is probably what many people and writers mean when they say "forgiveness," but in the religious tradition I came from, that word is reserved for something different.

In any case, resentment must go, or peace will not come.

*there is no peace for the wicked.

I am a recovering computer game and gambling addict. My recovery birthday: On May 6, 2012 I quit games and began working a program of recovery through OLGA No computer games or slot games for me since December 12, 2012. No solitaire games with real cards since June 2013.

Exavatar
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Thank you for sharing this.

Thank you for sharing this. I do believe, for me anyway, that letting go of resentments and forgiveness are separate things. I also believe that resentments hurt my spirit. They get in there and fester and fuel me in negative ways when there's nothing more that I can be done to "fix" the other person that's resented, so it makes sense to not harbor it and feed it because then it's given life.

it takes practice for me to rewire my brain so that I don't hold resentments. Whoever said practice makes perfect expects way too much. I'll take slow and steady progress any day. Way less pressure and then I don't have to resent the person who came up with that crazy saying! :)

"Even when you think it's about you, it's not about you." Dr. Bill

dan1
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Progress, not perfection. 

Progress, not perfection. New saying: "Practice makes better. Better is perfect."

I am a recovering computer game and gambling addict. My recovery birthday: On May 6, 2012 I quit games and began working a program of recovery through OLGA No computer games or slot games for me since December 12, 2012. No solitaire games with real cards since June 2013.

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