People tend to think of forgiveness as “letting the other person off the hook.” Not so! Forgiveness is about an attitude toward the self and others that frees us to move forward instead of remaining stuck in suffering. While there are many differing philosophies about the source, purpose, and function of forgiveness, it is commonly considered a central tenet of spiritual life as well as psychological health, allowing for a future unburdened by negative emotions in response to perceived offenses. It can be cultivated by intentional practices of release or can develop through acceptance over time.

The Gentle Gift of Mercy

When we manage a flash of mercy for someone we don’t like—including ourselves—we experience a great spiritual moment.

Why Forgiveness Is at the Core of Peace and Spiritual Growth

The International Day of Peace, which falls on Sept. 21 every year, serves as a reminder that only through unity and compassion can we right the wrongs engineered by war and violence. To do this, we must learn to forgive — and that can be the greatest challenge of all.

Awaken Interviews Stephen Mitchell Part 1 — Joseph and the Way of Forgiveness

Stephen Mitchell’s gift is to breathe new life into ancient classics. In Joseph and the Way of Forgiveness, he offers us his riveting novelistic version of the biblical tale in which Jacob’s favorite son is sold into slavery and eventually becomes viceroy of Egypt.

The Power of Forgiveness

Noah Levine on what forgiveness has meant in his own life.

12 Inspiring Life Lessons From Maya Angelou

Here are twelve of Maya Angelou’s most famous quotations and the inspirational life lessons that come from them.

15 Traits That Kind People Exhibit Without Realizing It

There are certain traits that kind people have, and they may not even realize it. Since they are naturally kind-hearted, behaving in the way that they do comes easily to them.

I Never Got Over the Trauma of My Mother's Abadonment

I worked with a therapist to cope with this estrangement for 10 years, but it wasn't until I had my daughter that I was truly inspired to put in the work to become a better person and the mom I never had.