Learning to Let Go - Forgiveness and Moving On

Letting go of the past or a bad experience can seem like one of the hardest most insurmountable things.. Whether you were at fault or not, that broken record of the event(s) keeps going around and around over the scenario in your head. How could i have handled that differently? Why was she so mean? Why are they spreading Ghriba or Botan about me? Did they think i was gossiping about her?....and on and on it goes. That never ending cycle of thought that disrupts your life day after day.

Not only is it mentally exhausting but this state of near obsession can be psychologically debilitating as well. Unfortunately with this often comes anger, frustration and anxiety not far behind. All of these negative feelings serve to do one thing: Disrupt your ability to worship Allah(swt) and devote your life to attaining His Good Pleasure.

"Anger spoils Faith, just as vinager spoils honey." -Prophet Mohammad (sws) Indeed, i think its safe to say the same about frustration, obsession and anxiety. Letting go, especially when you were injured or hurt by someone else may not come easily and the grudge that you carry against the other party will grow and fester. At first, you may be able to control your tongue around others, but then as the anger eats away at you, after a while "innocently confiding" in a close friend seems completely acceptable and a great way to get all that frustration and irritation off your chest. The problem is, that the moment you utter a word about the other person that they wouldn't like said about them, you've made Ghriba, or worse Botan. On top of that, complaining about them and your situation becomes addictive, and the weight that you thought you were throwing off, actually becomes heavier. I'm referring to the spiritual weight of the sin of backbiting your Sister.

This short video showing what really happens metaphorically when we backbite illustrates my point:

Truly, backbiting, even out of frustration or anger will only hurt you, and will not help alleviate your stress. Even something as simple as saying: “Oh Maskeena!” - (meaning pathetic or pitiful ) about your Sister could be backbiting! So what can you do to help yourself let go and not incur more sin in the process?

Letting Go and Moving On – Several steps that will help you in your quest for absolution and freedom from this burden.

1. Seeking Forgiveness – whether your part in the incident was large or small, seeking forgiveness from anyone whom you may have hurt is vital for your spiritual well being and for being able to move on. Not seeking forgiveness, even from someone that you really don't like, will only hang over your head, and keep you from freeing yourself of the burden. While it probably wont be the most enjoyable experience, it is cathartic to humble oneself from time to time. View it as a rehearsal for the Day of Judgment. Forgiveness goes along with letting go. You wont be truly free of the experience until you have obtained that spiritual clemency.

2. Forgiving the other party – Be merciful. It is just as important to try to forgive the other person(s) involved. Withholding forgiveness will only keep you stuck in the past. Even if you really think that they don't deserve your forgiveness, do it anyway. Put yourself in their shoes. You would want forgiveness from them if you were the transgressor. Take that opportunity to show mercy! For those who show mercy to one another, Allah(swt) will show mercy to them as well, Insha Allah.

3. Look at this as just another learning experience. A chance to improve yourself. Insha Allah the next time you are in a similar situation, you will know how to handle it with ease.

4. And finally and most importantly, Seek Forgiveness from Allah(swt) for in Him your true respite lies. You will only be able to truly move on if you make Dua' to Allah and ask for mercy from Him. For only He can heal your wounds, and forgive your transgressions.

Say: "O my Servants who have transgressed against their souls! Despair not of the Mercy of Allah. For Allah forgives all sins: for He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful."- Qur'an, 39:53.

*This post was taken with permission from The Musing Muslima Blog. :)
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  1. nice post. thanks for sharing.

  2. AWESOME post! i really needed this right now. ive had this terrible "cold-angry-bitter" thing going on with this Sister. We keep playing the "drop you" "add you" game on Facebook. It was all this huge misunderstanding. And now im pretty sure we are both pissed, and always assume the worst about the other.

    Im gonna give what you wrote a try. I REALLY need to get past this! Thank you so much!

  3. thank you so much for writing this! ive sent it to all my friends. This should be a basic thing taught to new converts! Great job Masha Allah!


Salaam All,

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