Find a position for your body that is relaxed and free from tension.

Gently close your eyes.

Bring your attention into your body, consciously softening any places that feel tight or contracted.

Pay particular attention to your face and jaw, your neck, shoulders and hands, letting them relax fully.

Bring a gentle and calm attention to rest in your chest, in your heart area.

Invite into your attention someone who has hurt you, whether in small or deep ways.

Hold that person in your attention and sense the array of images and emotions that arise, without judging any of them. Let them rest in your heart and mind without grasping hold of any of them.

Sense the ways in which you have felt harmed or abandoned, intentionally or unintentionally, by that person.

Feel the pain you carry with you from this past and sense that it may be time to lay down this burden.

Holding the difficult person in your attention, gently begin to offer the intention of forgiveness with the phrases:

"I forgive you for the pain you have caused."

"I forgive the anger, confusion, and ignorance at the heart of your harmfulness."

"To you who have hurt me, I offer forgiveness."

As you rest your attention in the phrases and intentions of forgiveness, sense whether even the tiniest glimmers of release or opening may be possible.

Sense the new beginnings that may be possible for you as you release the weight of the past. You may find it difficult to stay connected with the image or memory of someone who has hurt you deeply. Do not be harsh with demands on yourself. If you begin to flounder in the memories of pain, just return your attention to your body and breathing. Let your body relax and soften, and when you are ready, come back to the phrases, again offering forgiveness.

When you are ready, open your eyes.

Christina Feldman in Heart of Wisdom, Mind of Calm