When I began to teach about Metta (Lovingkindness Practice) in 2010, a dear friend and mentor reminded me to include "A Buddhist's Forgiveness Prayer" in the teachings. I was not familiar with it so she provided me with a copy.
Literally, it blew me away with its power, its compassion.
No one knows who wrote it really. Does it matter, especially if it works? If it heals?
This prayer is often my "go-to" prayer because forgiveness comes in varied shapes and forms. Forgiveness for others when they've erred. Forgiveness of yourself when you've made mistakes and hurt others, knowingly or unknowingly. Forgiveness when you need to forgive someone and feel stubbornly resistant and are just not ready.
I love this prayer so much, I've put it in my new book that comes out in November on "Portable Peace." But I'd love you to have a copy of it now.
I just used this prayer again today, in fact, because I had an unfortunate thing happen in terms of my business life. I made a big red-faced, faux pas, that disturbed several people. I didn't mean it to happen. I just didn't think it through. I was rushing and trying to be productive. (I wrote about it here.)
Rather than beat myself up for hours (ok, I did so for an hour or two; regret whooshed in after that), I went to the prayer.
A Buddhist Forgiveness Prayer
I love the last few lines because it emphasizes how important it is that we be self-compassionate. Think of all the ways we harm ourselves, talk badly to ourselves, demean and bash ourselves when we've been less than perfect. Sigh ...
Let's say the prayer together whenever we need it. Forgive yourself if you need forgiving, please? It's the most self-compassionate thing to do.
is a touchpoint. a resting place, a "remembering" of who we really are and how we can best live—kindly and compassionately with ourselves and others.
Janice Lynne Lundy, DMin
is an educator, interspiritual director/guide and retreat leader who has been pointing people back toward the Sacred for more than twenty years. She is the author of several spiritual growth books, including Your Truest Self, My Deepest Me and Portable Peace., and is the co-founder and co-director of the Spiritual Guidance Training Institute.