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The Forgiveness Prayer of Ho'oponopono

health & vitality love & relationships mind & meaning Feb 06, 2022

In striving to reach your goals and live a happy, fulfilling life, one of the obstacles that may hold you back is a lack of forgiveness toward yourself and others.

While feelings of anger, hurt, or resentment can be difficult to overcome, releasing them is an essential step on the path to peace. 

Dr. Joe Vitale, our guest in Episode 79 of The MINDSet Game® podcast, shares how forgiveness served as a catalyst for radical transformation in his life. Today, Joe’s list of accomplishments is truly awe inspiring: he is an internationally famous author, marketing guru, movie, TV, and radio personality, world-renowned inspirational speaker, Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist, and much more. 

Despite the success he has achieved, however, Joe’s journey has not always been easy. Many years ago, he spent approximately a decade living in poverty, including a period of homelessness. Joe eventually realized that his mindset was one of the main reasons why he was struggling.

As he said, “When I was homeless, I blamed the world. I didn't know about belief work. I didn't know about taking responsibility. I didn't know about forgiveness. I didn't know how to transcend what I was going through. All I knew was everybody else was doing well, and I alone was not.” Living in a public library at the time, Joe sought guidance in the books that surrounded him—and through reading, he began to understand that in order to change his life, he needed to change his mindset and beliefs.


The power of forgiving yourself

As Joe overcame his struggle with poverty and began to build a successful career, an integral part of changing his mindset was forgiving himself for harboring the toxic beliefs that had held him back for so long. 

More recently, Joe was reminded of the power of self-forgiveness when he went through a devastating divorce. As a leading expert on the Law of Attraction, he questioned whether the heart-wrenching experience could have been the result of his own thoughts and beliefs. He knew that in order to heal, he needed to forgive himself—and part of what helped him do so was acknowledging that he had done the best he could and made the best decisions possible in light of the information he had at the time. 


The power of forgiving others

Forgiving those who have hurt you can be just as difficult as forgiving yourself—but it is equally important in order to attain peace and fulfillment. In Joe’s life, one example of the power of forgiving others stemmed from his relationship with his father, which had been strained for many years. Eventually, Joe was able to find forgiveness by realizing that his father had done the best he could, and holding onto anger over the way he was raised was only hurting himself. By choosing forgiveness, Joe was able to build a closer, more fulfilling relationship with his father in the later years of his life. 

The importance of releasing anger and forgiving others can be summarized by a Buddha quote that Joe references:

“Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.”


How can you find forgiveness and peace?

While there are many ways to change your mindset and forgive yourself and others, Joe recommends the Hawaiian practice of Ho’oponopono. Roughly translated as “to make things right,” ho’oponopono is focused on reconciliation and forgiveness.

Joe suggests that whenever you notice that something is “off” in your life—whether you’re feeling angry, unhappy, resentful, or simply not at peace—you recite the ho’oponopono prayer to yourself and whichever higher power you acknowledge.

This simple, yet incredibly powerful, prayer consists of four phrases:

  I love you

•  I’m sorry

•  Please forgive me

•  Thank you 

For more of Joe’s insight on how to practice ho’oponopono and the power of forgiving yourself and others, tune into Episode 79 of The MINDSet Game® podcast!




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