In forgiving them, it was also communicated by God that there shall be two things given to Adam, Eve and their children hence to humanity. These two things are Guidance (Huda) and Forgiveness (Maghfirah). As a result in different age Messengers, Prophets, Communicators, Mystics and Inspired Sages are sent to provide guidance according to the time and its need. Sometime through their oral teachings, examples and sometime through scripture these Messengers, Prophets, Apostles and Communicators have communicated elements of guidance.
And at the same time there is an universal Divine promise of Forgiveness that extends to all of humanity. This forgiveness is promised by God to all who turn to God for forgiveness.
In Islamic Sacred Tradition the theme of Divine Forgiveness is again and again mentioned. In one of the sacred narration it is transmitted:
‘Allah, the Most High, said, ‘O children of Adam! As long as you supplicate to Me, and hope in Me, I will forgive you what you have done and I do not care. O son of Adam! If your sins were to reach the lofty regions of the sky, then you asked Me for forgiveness, I would forgive you. O son of Adam! If you were to come to Me with enough sins to fill the earth, but you met Me not associating anything with Me - I would bring you forgiveness the like of it (and more)."
Such is the tremendous nature of Divine Forgiveness.
In the Qur'an it is said, “O My servants who have transgressed greatly against themselves through sins! Do not despair of the Mercy of Allah. Indeed Allah forgives all sins to those who repent. Indeed He is the Oft-Forgiving, the Most Merciful." - The Qur'an, az-Zumar (39):54
The importance of asking Divine Forgiveness was so monumental that the Messenger Jesus Christ began his ministry by calling people thus: "Repent, for the Divine Kingdom is near." According to Catholic Reference, Repentance means voluntary sorrow because it offends God, for having done something wrong, together with the resolve to amend one's conduct by taking the necessary means to avoid the occasions of sin. To repent is to be sorry for sin with self-condemnation. (Etym. Latin repoenitere, to be very sorry, regret intensely.)
We human being who are such a complex spiritual-psychological being, for us our inner most being knows very well every mistake that we commit, every single truth that we cover up, every time we may deny someone something be it love, right over something or what is someone else's right over us. Our conscience is such a perfect mechanism built in within us that knows exactly every right from the wrong. It is our condition with which we may deny it at sometime in our life, we may commit things which we know inwardly that it is wrong, yet we go along with it. As a result, over time, our spirit gets suffocated and over-burdened with mistakes, shortcomings and hidden desire to come clean. It is turning to God and bathing in the Immense Ocean of His Unbound Forgiveness that we can clean our conscience and the burden is lifted from our shoulder, from our soul.
Just as the Prophet, John the Baptist, peace be upon him, used to call God to baptize, take a shower in the river Jordan, which was very significantly symbolic of people's repentance literally cleaning themselves through the water of God's forgiveness - similarly asking for Divine forgiveness, longing that God may forgive all our mistakes and shortcomings - this trigger a certain alchemy in our soul and purify it unlike anything else.
Following is an useful book titled, "The Most Excellent Manner of Seeking Divine Forgiveness," which you may download and read. It speaks of certain blessed words of invocation which have been used and recommended by those near to God as means to seek forgiveness.
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