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Forgiveness requires us to be aware. It requires us to be fully present in the moment and to be present and open to life as it is. However, oftentimes when we struggle to forgive ourselves or others, our focus is usually on things that were said and done. Maybe replaying certain conversations in our head, wishing you could have done things differently, that life wasn't how it turned out to be, or the focus is on the other person and what they did wrong. So when we turn towards forgiveness and lean into and trust life as it is, we can begin to let go of that grudge that we're carrying, that dwelling on things that can't be undone or unsaid. And by choosing to forgive, there's a sense of freedom that arises, a spaciousness that emerges when we choose to let go. For the practice today, I wanted to share with you ho'oponopono, an ancient Hawaiian practice of forgiveness and reconciliation. It consists of four simple yet intentional statements that invite us to reflect, forgive and express gratitude. We'll repeat the phrases to ourselves, to another and to all other beings experiencing what we're experiencing, similar to the loving kindness practice. It's not unusual for emotions to arise during this practice or for resistance to occur. But if at any time it becomes too much, just return the focus back to the breath, or even come back to this practice at another time. So let's begin by taking a moment to get comfortable. Whether that's lying down or sitting upright. Making sure the body is in a present yet relaxed manner. Keeping the eyes open to a soft, gentle gaze, noticing your surroundings and what's there. And then, taking some nice, big, deep breaths. On the next exhale, gently closing the eyes, returning the breath back to its natural rhythm. Softening the eyebrows, unclenching the jaw, relaxing the shoulders and just continuing to scan down the body. Noticing any other areas of the body holding a bit of tension or discomfort. And just reminding yourself why you're here today. Getting clear on your intention, your sense of motivation and purpose for doing this exercise. It could be for you or for someone else. And then just resting the focus on the sensation of the breath. Gently noticing each inhale and each exhale. Not doing anything differently. Just noticing the gentle rhythm of the breath as you breathe in and as you breathe out. And if it feels right for you, placing one hand over your heart, and then the other hand just gently resting on top, breathing in and breathing out, connecting to that sense of compassion. And we'll offer these words to ourself first. Repeating after me, I'm sorry, please forgive me. Thank you. I love you. Again, I'm sorry, please forgive me. Thank you. I love you. And just continuing to repeat these phrases, gently noticing what arises in the mind and body, seeing if you can...


Duration10 min

About your teachers

  • A former Buddhist monk, Andy has guided people in meditation and mindfulness for 20 years. In his mission to make these practices accessible to all, he co-created the Headspace app in 2010.

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  • Eve is a mindfulness teacher, overseeing Headspace’s meditation curriculum. She is passionate about sharing meditation to help others feel less stressed and experience more compassion in their lives.

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  • As a meditation teacher, Dora encourages others to live, breathe, and be with the fullness of their experiences. She loves meditation’s power to create community and bring clarity to people’s minds.

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  • Kessonga has been an acupuncturists, therapist, and meditation teacher, working to bring mindfulness to the diverse populations of the world.

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  • Rosie Acosta has studied yoga and mindfulness for more than 20 years and taught for over a decade. Rosie’s mission is to help others overcome adversity and experience radical love.

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