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Book Reviews

The Forgiveness Solution is not a book to read, as much as it is a journey to experience.  Most of the book consists of exercises designed to connect the reader with his or her own true Self or Inner Being, mapping out the pathways form fear to love.  Friedman’s basic philosophy is summed up here: 

"A lifetime of personal and spiritual growth and practicing psychotherapy has led me to understand that underneath all distressing emotions is the core emotion of fear, which is itself a lack of love. Love is the core positive emotion that we experience when we are connected to our inner Being or true Self. When we feel separate from our inner Being or true Self, we experience fear. … The essence of our Being is love, and our journey through life is a quest to return to our core, which is love" (page 49).

He draws on perspectives and techniques from transpersonal psychology, spiritual healing, energy medicine, visualizations, and forgiveness research to create a comprehensive protocol for emotional and/or mental distress. Each exercise assists the reader in releasing fear, anger, judgment, scorn, blame and so on, making room for love and light. Personally speaking, Friedman’s perspective makes a lot of sense and it seems to cut through a lot of psychological complexity that may bog us down on our journeys. Sad? Angry? Confused? Bitter? Afraid? Use forgiveness of self and others to get rid of all the garbage that obscures your beauty, allowing your natural joy, love, and light to shine forth. The underlying simplicity of Friedman’s approach will appeal to those readers who are no longer interested in trying to analyze the roots of their pain, and wish instead to simply step into the present in a joyful way. Once we can really internalize that “every communication is either an expression of love or a call for love” (page 50), our relationships can begin to evolve, long-time grudges can dissolve, wounds can heal, and we can learn to love unconditionally, starting with ourselves.

However, it must be said that readers of The Forgiveness Solution must be able and willing to devote some time and effort to actually doing the exercises on a regular basis – affirmations, visualizations, self-acupressure, emotional freedom technique sequences, letter writing, journaling and prayer. Just sitting down and leafing through the book will probably not result in any meaningful shifts. But for people who are really motivated to make changes in their life – releasing fear and embracing love – this book could be exactly what the doctor ordered. Practicing psychiatrists, psychologists, therapists and counselors will find this book a treasure trove of useful exercises that they can prescribe to their patients and clients, helping to shift the focus from the therapeutic process to producing real results by connecting people with their capacity to love self and others.

Elizabeth Mackenzie, Ph.D is a Lecturer in the Health and Societies Program at the University of Pennsylvania, as well as a Fellow of the Center for Spirituality and the Mind, an Associate Fellow of the Center for Public Health Initiatives and an Associate Fellow of the Institute on Aging. She currently teaches courses in humanistic and holistic medicine. She is the author of Healing the Social Body: a Holistic Approach to Public Health Policy (1998) and the co-editor of Complementary and Alternative Medicine for Older Adults (2006).  In addition to her academic work, Dr. Mackenzie is a Reiki practitioner and a long-time student of yoga and qigong, as well as the Books for Healing section editor for the website All Things Healing.

As the voice of someone who heals through the know how of forgiveness, Philip Friedman takes one on an active evoking journey, as he plants the seeds of forgiveness, like a gift, to help release that heavy hidden emotional baggage, that many of us carry throughout our lives; his knowledge is profound and pragmatic; as he teaches through example; he states that ‘every communication is either an expression of love or a call for love; he also points out that ‘the core of love is the essence of ones being.’

Philip Friedman tells us about a universal truth, and at the same time he helps help us move aside the dark clouds that cover our beautiful spiritual inner light; he has found the solution, and the way to happiness, abundant love, and inner peace, through forgiveness.

‘The Forgiveness Solution’ gives healing guidance for the DNA of the spirit, through its practical exercises, and affirmations, which can be put into practice right away.
Personally, I was able to face my hidden psychological and physical pain; and through the exercises, I was able to release those negative feeling, that were difficult to unravel, and Finally to release them forever from the deepest levels of my being.

Philip Friedman also states that, underneath all emotional and psychological problems there is one core problem, that simply being, un-forgiveness.

I personally really love the way every chapter begins with a personal story of other seekers experiences in combination with the exercises– which does truly set the pace, the mood and offers hope- I never felt alone on the journey for one moment, as I allowed forgiveness to profoundly enter my life, thanks to Philips guidance I have learned to know, and trust that it is fine to choose love over fear.

As Philip Friedman, quotes, ‘one of our most important contributions to healing the world can start with FORGIVENESS. Truly this book is a jewel, in the treasure chest of life, and worth the read.

Philip Friedman, thank you for sharing your loving wisdom, with me, and others, through The Forgiveness Solution.

Pat Cleveland is an international top model having worked for Halston; Valentino; Stephen Burrows; Armani and a Fashion Ambassador representing countries such as the United States, and the United Kingdom. She has performed on stage, singing and dancing; plus acted in many foreign films. She has appeared in Cameo parts, for a few American films, and TV shows. Pat is also a lyricist, having written and recorded in Italy and has appeared on talk shows internationally. She has received many awards for her work as a poet, and has recently received ‘The Thurgood  Marshall  Award’  as a Fashion Icon. Presently Pat is in the United States working on her own writing, of stories, and plays for screen; plus her autobiography,  Her first book of poems ‘In the Spirit of Grace’ was first published in English, and into an Italian translation version. She is presently working on the story, and, the documentary, of Lady Bird the artist.

As a musician, performer, writer, coach and creative person, I am on a life long quest for deeper and deeper connection to my inner source of inspiration.

Through my ongoing commitment to live a fulfilling life rich with love, peace, joy, health and abundance, I have learned that these are not things to 'get' in life, but rather, a way to 'be' and a place to 'come from.' Being forgiving has sometimes felt like a hard thing to do - with others, but mostly, with myself. Dr. Friedman not only breaks down the process into simple, do-able steps, he practically holds your hand through the entire journey.

His treasure trove of forgiveness exercises progresses organically and I found tremendous relief in knowing I was not alone in my life experiences, through reading April's responses to each exercise throughout. This reinforced Dr. Friedman's assurances that there is no right or wrong way to forgive. As he promised in his Introduction, I not only benefitted from each exercise, but I was present to a powerful, uplifting energy which propelled me forward through the work.

While I don't necessarily have a favorite exercise, I found the use of Afformations, the Psychological Uplifter and the repeated practice of Positive Pressure Point Techniques throughout the day to be very effective. As I progressed, I became aware of a level of acceptance and compassion for myself that was surprisingly authentic and life-changing. I can see how continued practice of Dr. Friedman's exercises and techniques, and repeated reads of his heart-opening book (which he advises) will continue to provide me, truly, with the 'keys to the kingdom' and enable me to live in a continual and spontaneous state of forgiveness, both for myself and others. I thank Dr. Friedman for this compelling opportunity to heal and expand my inner light and I challenge every human being to take on this gift of The Forgiveness Solution.
~ Deb Chamberlin ~

Deb Chamberlin is a singer-songwriter, jingle & voice-over artist, screenwriter, vocal coach, songwriting coach, life coach, founder and executive director of a cultural arts non-profit for young people in South Jersey called the "Changing Our World (COW) Project," and mother of a 13 year old daughter. She has released 2 full-length CD's ("Secrets of My Universe" and "I am She") with all songs co-written and produced by her husband, Robert Wynn, as well as a group anthem for global tolerance and peace, "The Time Has Come," featuring many of Philadelphia's favorite recording artists.

The Forgiveness Solution is a very powerful book that offers practical tools to create well-being. This book shows you how to transform the daily stress and aggravation from encountering rudeness, broken agreements, or from unfulfilled expectations, into peace and love. Or on a deeper level, it can help you forgive those who have deeply hurt, abused, or betrayed you, so that you can heal. You’ll also pinpoint areas where you need to forgive yourself for past mistakes.

You’ll discover how you really are about letting go of past hurts, and uncover areas where you’re incomplete. Dr Friedman then provides visualizations, journal exercises, affirmations and positive pressure point techniques to help you resolve past issues so that you can feel peaceful and experience more love. You can use these tools on a daily basis to shift automatic negative reactions into positive ones. They will help you return back to your core Self.

Sometimes the most difficult relationships offer the greatest healing opportunities. The stories illustrate how past challenges have made you stronger, wiser, and a better person, so that you can shift your perspective. You can release feeling victimized and feel empowered. The writing is clear, concise and easy to read and each chapter builds upon the next. Although it is very spiritual, it is not religious or dogmatic.

What I enjoyed most was the general tone of the book. It is so filled with compassionate wisdom and advice that just by reading it I was able to feel the Divine Order in my life. The Forgiveness Solution rates five stars. Whether you need to learn how to forgive a reckless driver for cutting you off on the highway or your mate for cheating on you, this book will help you feel happier and fulfilled. It will also help you shift to a higher level of awareness. I highly recommend that everyone should read it. by Djuna Wojton

Djuna Wojton is the director of Djunaverse Center for Healing Arts in Philadelphia where she teaches classes and conducts private sessions. With over two decades of experience as a past-life regressionist, spiritual healer and counselor, Djuna helps people heal at the core, step into their power, and end repeating cycles of pain and distress once and for all. Thereby, new possibilities of greater love, joy and fulfillment unfold in their future. She is the author of the Karmic Healing: Clearing Past-Life Blocks to Present-Day Love, Health and Happiness (Crossing Press 2006) which has sold throughout the US and Canada and is translated into Spanish, Romanian, Latvian and Chinese

Easy, immediate steps to forgive.

What I love most about this book is that you can quickly put it to pratical use in helping you become more forgiving. The style of engaging story followed by simple yet profound exercises had me feeling better within the first few minutes of reading.

This is my new go-to book on feeling better and working through any issues that I have.

You will not only enjoy reading it but also the experiences that come from your interaction with the book.

Blaine Oelkers (Scottsdale, AZ)

Blaine is a lifetime entrepreneur and has been creating and operating profitable businesses for over two decades. A graduate of Purdue University, Blaine has owned and operated a consulting firm, a franchise with the world's largest pizza delivery company, four health and wellness businesses and a personal development company. His passion is to help people take control of their lives by taking control of themselves. He will help you master yourself and your life.

Copyright © 2009 Dr. Philip Friedman.
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