Did you know, today, every member of the Jain community is celebrating what is known as the Kshamavani Diwas. On this day, all the Jains approach every other individual and ask for Kshama or forgiveness. They beg pardon of their mistakes and faults which were committed by them knowingly or unknowingly. They confess and ask for forgiveness. It is a day when Jains keep nothing against anybody and forgive every other individual for their mistakes. They say, forgiveness is the ultimate road to salvation. Those who forgive are the strongest people on this earth. It is very easy to get angry and shout at others but it takes a real strong heart to forgive. It is not easy to forget what happened in the past and start afresh. We, human beings, are very emotional. We do not forget the wrong-doings of others. Imagine yourself waking up one morning and forgiving every person who has ever hurt you, intentionally or unintentionally. Doesn't happen, isn't it? You'd think about it a hundred times before approaching those people and apologizing.
Forgiveness is the greatest act of kindness. A person can be kind only if they have carry no negative thoughts in their mind. Would you be kind to a person whom you do not like? I don't think it is possible. To take out all kinds of negative thoughts, you need to control your anger. Negative thoughts give birth to anger. Anger can be discarded only if you have a clear mind, a mind that thinks about more than just revenge. And revenge can be altered only if you forgive. So, basically it is the anger which needs to be thrown out of our lives.
I read somewhere, "A forgiver sleeps soundly and peacefully; but the night of an unforgiving person passes in mental tension and uneasiness. It seems as if his bed was strewn with thorns." If you ask me, I totally agree. Look into your own lives. Try to recall a day when you were angry at someone. Do you remember getting those wrinkles on your forehead, that frown which made you feel miserable. Restless sleep and uneasiness took the better of you. Didn't you spend time thinking about the whole issue? Maybe you even felt suicidal. Now imagine how your day would have passed, had you forgiven that person. Sweet, isn't it? That is the point I want to make.
I am not sure whether you have ever heard of Kshamavani Diwas. I don't know if such a day is celebrated in other parts of the world or not. Every year I apologize and ask for forgiveness from all the Jains that I know of. When I was a kid, I used to get embarrassed. When I grew up, I realised that there was nothing to be embarrassed. It is a good deed and I must do it with a pure heart. And this year, I thought I would be doing a greater deed if I share it with the rest of the world.
With folded hands, I apologize for all my mistakes. I am sorry if I had ever hurt you in any way. I beg for forgiveness.