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Forgiveness is (not always) Divine

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posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 10:21 AM
I have my own saying.

To err is human
To forgive is divine
But to let someone continue to walk all over you is just plain stupid.

I find it easy to forgive someone personally. But I won't be forgetting, and I won't be letting it happen against so easily.

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 10:23 AM
I believe that forgiveness , when genuine, is a process more for the victim than the person committing the assault. Forgiveness indicates that the victim has conquered the effects of the crime and managed to mitigate its effects so that its long-term adverse result on the victims life is controlled and minimized. I think that when this is achieved then the person committing the assault receives solace from the understanding that their action was not as severe as it could have been. Forgiving is a part of the process in life whereby we become stronger and in my mind that is what life is all about.

[edit on 6-7-2009 by baboo]

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 10:27 AM
I find that some things are easier to forgive than others.

It's not about how big or small the hurtful action is, but more who did it, why they did it and how quickly I get over it.

Example, my ex-employer was a nightmare and tried to bully and brow-beat me for years. I could cope most of the time, and since I was free to leave if I wished and as she kept me in employment for a long time, I can mostly forgive. There are a couple of incidents that still rankle, but I understand her very well and, knowing that a lot of the bluster was to disguise her feelings of inadequacy, I can let go.

On the other hand, I had a run-in with a late middle-aged man on an escalator. It was crowded and he kept treading on the hem of my dress in his efforts to barge past me. Eventually we had a few words as he shoved his way past. He turned back and pushed me in the chest and called me a 'slag', just for sticking up for myself. I'll never forgive him. The whole incident was over in a couple of minutes but I was extremely hurt and frustrated. I know he'll never be sorry, I was nothing to him, just a 'blob' who was in his (very important) way.

That's what I hate - people who de-humanise or belittle you to justify their bad behaviour and lack of manners towards you.

As long as I mean so little to another person and so long as they aren't sorry, then I won't be forgiving them.

A person who appreciates me as an equal human being and is genuinely sorry for hurting me will most likely be forgiven. If they tried to make amends it would help, too.

I never forget, though. I wouldn't trust someone ever again if they had proved to be untrustworthy in the past, for example.

I tend to believe that life takes care of most people. That person who tries to push me around and thinks they got away with it may well pick on a bigger, nastier person next time. That suits me.

I don't want to get into a cycle of tit-for-tat. I absent myself from people I'm not comfortable with. Consequently, I've got a very small circle of friends/family but it makes life easier for me.

As long as the offender is away from me and no longer able to hurt me, I'm mostly OK except for that de-humanising issue.

Forgiveness may be not possible so long as wounded pride is in play. Seeing the offender being punished wouldn't help. A change in their attitude towards me would be the thing that was required.

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 10:27 AM
The OP brings up an interesting topic.

I don't believe it is truly possible to fully forgive anyone. I don't even think you should even try. There is a reason why it happened to you. It shaped who you are, because life is full of the unfortunate and at times, horrible events. They all help you grow as a person, however horrible. Everything has a reason, and whether you realize it not, the longer you keep the negative impact around you the worse you feel.

Forgiveness indeed does not mean to forgive, but it means remembering and attempting to forget. It only comes naturally, you shouldn't force something that comes with time. Who says you should get back into speaking terms with someone horrible anyways? People who have committed horrible atrocities should not even get the time of day from you.

Making peace with yourself is a personal process. It does not involve extending your hand out to someone who has wronged you. The best thing would be to cut that person out of your life forever, and if not possible, as much as possible.

Don't be afraid to take time for yourself, because that is the key to feeling better... But who said you have to forgive to achieve this?

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 10:49 AM
reply to post by berenike

I think this a very "healthy" response. I do. You are very wise.

I, too, can forgive the ordinary trespasses of daily life. And some not so ordinary, if the person expresses remorse, and I believe them.

But, if I had something really heinous happen in my life, I would want to see punishment. I think it would validate my outrage.

My home was burglarized years back. The thieves were never caught.
I still resent that. I would still like to see them caught and brought to justice to this day. (They took my engagement ring, and the jewelry my friends, grandparents, and parents had given me over the years. Graduations, birthdays, Christmases, gone in a flash. sigh.

See? I can still think about it and get mad. Guess I haven't forgiven.

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 10:51 AM
There are physiological effects to the body of those who are hanging onto hate, rage, guilt, etc. If we have been wronged somehow and we hang onto the hate and rage, then we are not punishing the offender, but we are punishing ourselves. The act of non-forgiveness will eat you up inside and cause all sorts of ailments to manifest for the individual hanging onto the misdeed committed against them.

Forgiveness does not mean that you have to become friends with the offender, nor does it mean you have to forget or pretend that the misdeed did not take place. What it does mean is letting go of the thoughts of revenge, hate, rage, anger etc.

If we as humans do not willingly forgive our trespassers, then we are not hurting the offender, but we are only hurting ourselves and ruining our own health in the process. I look at this as helping the offender to further perpetrate the crime/misdeed over and over again. A wise man once told me this: "To harbor rage and anger against another person is like allowing that person to live rent free in your head" I do not want the offender(s) living rent free in my head so I finally did something to change myself.

I have had a lot of people to forgive in my life and I had to do this for my own sanity as well as to regain control over my own health.

I took up meditation a few years back and during meditative moments I sent Love out to the people who have wronged me and I conscientiously let go of all the hate. Amazing things began to happen to me including the many aches and pains I was feeling in my body began to disappear.

Each of us has a choice and we can allow the perpetrator to live rent free in our head or we can take the steps to forgive and ultimately enjoy our life and feel the freedom that forgiveness brings. Forgiveness does work.

Here is a good article
The healing power of forgiveness

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 10:58 AM
Forgiveness is a process. It is not a one time event. You have to mentally and emotionally work very hard to get to the point of forgiveness. It is a journey and a lesson, which makes the soul grow. But you can't just do it, you have to work through it. Even if it means it takes years. But it must be time.

When the feelings no longer serve a purpose, and reach a point where they do nothing but harm you, then it is time to let go.

Resentment is like taking poison and waiting for the other person to die. ~Malachy McCourt

[edit on 6-7-2009 by nixie_nox]

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 11:12 AM
reply to post by ladyinwaiting

And what is it, really? how do you know when you have forgiven someone? You invite them over to dinner? You say you have? You pretend as though you have?

Forgiveness is complicated. In the reason that no one really understands it. However, forgiveness can be personal and not external. It could be the way a certain person is hardwired to think.

You don't really know if you have forgiven someone and in some ways its impossible to forgive 100%, their will always be at least 1% of anger of hate to that other person. I think if you can spend time with the other person and just be yourself around them thats when forgiveness is adequate enough.

Pretending to forgive is also interesting and the only person you are fooling is yourself, because they KNOW you have not fully forgiven them they can see it in your actions and your words.

And if you pretend, then doesn't that make it harder?

Pretending makes it difficult for you or the person to accept that what was done to them was wrong and in essence they are running from it.

If someone is truly, truly, sorry, then it makes it easier.

Most of the time.

If someone steps on your toe in line at the grocery.

Pucnh them in the no, as long as they say that they were sorry no harm done.

But what about the big issues? Murder. Rape. Genocide.

What if you say you do forgive to please other people, but in your private heart, you don't.

That is pretending and it is very dangerous.

Then what?

Do you find it easy to forgive?

Easy is not always the right way to go, saying that they forgive is hard and never easy. if it was easy people would be walking hand in hand. However, forgiveness is difficult, or at least truley forgiving is difficult.

Thought provocating questions OP Nice thread and nicley done

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 11:44 AM
Having been abused heinously as a child by my family, mostly my father but also other relatives, I have struggled with the nature of forgiveness. I was told by these very same people my entire life that if you don't forgive those that have wronged you, then you are doomed to hell. (Which I no longer believe in, but that's beside the point now.)

And just before my father died, I lied to him. I told him the past was forgiven, and that I loved him. It wasn't and I don't. But I felt compelled to show mercy.

And what's weird is that I often find myself regretting that decision.
Why did I not tell him that Karma's a bitch and now, you stranded in that bed totally dependent on the people around you is what you deserve.
Everytime you soil yourself, wet the bed, go hungry, and lay there in it suffering, you are reaping what you sowed. How does it feel old man, to be the helpless one?

I don't know why I chose to let him off the hook... in his own mind anyway. But if I didn't at least tell that merciful lie, would I be just as guilty of the same cruelty he inflicted?

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 11:53 AM
reply to post by Angus123

I don't know why I chose to let him off the hook... in his own mind anyway. But if I didn't at least tell that merciful lie, would I be just as guilty of the same cruelty he inflicted?

Thats a difficult. Do I think you did the right thing? Personally I do. Again this falls into the category of external forgiveness. Which is also pretend forgiveness, but external forgiveness is different because it has a purpose. In this case it was to give your father the peace of mind that you believe he deserved. That is amazing, that is huge and I think you were bigger then him. Even though you lied you at least made some effort to relieve his psychological suffering (possibly).

Are you just as guilty.. um.. hell no, thats the simple answer. Your merciful lie was for a reason, not out of hate or anger. But of another emotion that I am not sure what it is.

I am sorry for what you went through and if you ever need to talk just u2u me.

[edit on Jul 6th 2009 by TheMythLives]

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 12:05 PM
Forgiveness is a rare present which pretty much excuses a wrong doing. A grant of immunity by the victim.

I do not forgive people, but I do not want revenge either.

These people should not have to feel that they have to forgive their abuser. That is THEIR choice.

What they have to realize though is that life is grand. No one knows what happens after it, so you might as well make the best of it.

Pressing a closed set of beliefs is never the answer. Give them the information, and suggestions on how to use it.

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 12:06 PM

This is the third time I've been back to your thread. I have not posted a reply yet because of my most recent thread and the animosity from some members because of it.

Forgiveness? Aren't we selfish to think that our forgiveness is something others want? Isn't forgiveness a selfish thing? Because forgiveness itself is for the forgiver. Forgiving the transgressions and trespasses of others is not for their benefit, it is for ours.

I forgave my mother (and others) for one reason. I would not let her win. I would not stoop to her level. I reasoned that hating her would not affect her, nor change the past but would definitely harm me and every relationship I ever hoped to have with anyone.

I forgive others in order to cope with my own feelings. Giving in to hate or despair only hurts the person feeling those emotions. Our outlook on life is changed by the negative focus we place on others. By forgiving, we elevate our selves, our emotions and our focus.

I could be entirely wrong and in that case, eventually I will become wiser. Determination is key.

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 12:16 PM
I feel it is a matter of healing oneself of the negative emotions and heart entanglements.
It is futile just to verbally say you've forgive someone because the best judge for oneself is if you see the person again or recollect the memories, will it stir your emotion in a negative way or you can finally just see it as a passed experience which you can truly let go and keep your current state of being unaffected and see that person as a friend again or at the least neutral.

I understand it is easier said to be done especially for heavy issues but that is why wise people/texts shed tools for us to use like replace the hate/anger with love. Cultivate the love for your enemy and seeing that all 'bad' experience can be good in the sense of learning and growing and true forgiveness come easy.

It is also liken to an indirect sense of guilt because one may feel if they've forgive, they will let themselves or the victims down. So there seemingly a need to hold on to the grudge to satisfy the guilt. I read somewhere saying repentance is actually forgiving oneself and I concur.

So I'll say a true forgiveness is not one where you still feel like you are forgiving or have forgiven someone but discovering our capacity to love. If you think you are doing the act of forgiving, it also means you feel that person is indebted to you and how can true forgiveness involve debts?That is why essentially there is in fact nothing to be forgiven except to learn of our potential to love.

[edit on 6-7-2009 by clementlim]

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 12:17 PM
To Angus123: You tried to alleviate your father's pain, and you showed him compassion. There is nothing wrong with that. You are a better man than he.

To Hazelnut: I'm beginning to think you are precisely right. We forgive for ourselves. To nurture ourselves, and regain control over our emotions. But that's what you said, isn't it? hm. I think it is sad, in a way, that you are right. But I think you are.

To Myth: Hold the damn Phone! lol (sorry, I couldn't resist. I loved it).

[edit on 6-7-2009 by ladyinwaiting]

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 12:21 PM
reply to post by ladyinwaiting

Until recently I believed that forgiveness was like respect, it had to be earned. I have come to the belief that if I do not forgive I will continue with an attachment that will follow me around from lifetime to lifetime. My sincere prayer now is, "I forgive you and I release you from my life." The first time that I said this prayer I felt a difference. Every time thoughts of my mother come into my head I say the prayer.
I feel that I am truly releasing the negativity that has been stored within.
I was severely abused and neglected as a child. My understanding now is that my soul choose to have these experiences in order to grow and to transform.

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 12:23 PM
reply to post by Hazelnut

I have not heard that ttake in a long time and it is extremely valid. The only reason we do things is to make us feel good. Thats the number one reason, because we enjoy something, it makes us happy or it gives us a feeling that is unrivaled.

Forgiveness is the same. Again their are different levels of forgiveness.




Both can be simplified further, but those are the main ones. Its up to the person to decide which one he/she wants to use. Internal for your own gain, internal to truley let go, external to help someone, etc.. the list goes one and on.

Again forgiveness is not justa tricky word, the definition and cause is something not yet known.

reply to post by ladyinwaiting

lol, yes. Hold the damn phone!

[edit on Jul 6th 2009 by TheMythLives]

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 12:28 PM

Originally posted by TheMythLives
reply to post by Hazelnut

I have not heard that ttake in a long time and it is extremely valid. The only reason we do things is to make us feel good. Thats the number one reason, because we enjoy something, it makes us happy or it gives us a feeling that is unrivaled.

Forgiveness is the same. Again their are different levels of forgiveness.




Both can be simplified further, but those are the main ones. Its up to the person to decide which one he/she wants to use. Internal for your own gain, internal to truley let go, external to help someone, etx.. the list goes one and on.

Again forgiveness is not justa tricky word, the definition and cause is something not yet known.

reply to post by ladyinwaiting

lol, yes. Hold the damn phone!

he he he, hold the damn phone! Love ya man!

Forgiveness. How profound a thought...asking for forgiveness is the other side of giving forgiveness but both possbily are born from selfish motives.

I want forgiveness for something I've done so that I feel free again. I feel forgiveness when I realize that we all make mistakes.

LadyinWaiting, this is a very difficult subject to articulate. I'm glad you started it and enjoy reading everyone's take on the subject. And I starred and flagged the first time I was here.

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 12:50 PM
The saying "life is too short" fits the bill here. you don't always have to forgive
but it's not good for body and mind to dwell.
You don't have to forgive but you have to forget!

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 12:53 PM
Interesting thread ladyinwaiting.

In my opinion forgiveness goes against our intuition and our survival instincts. If you touch a hot stove and get burned your experience tells you that touching it again will achieve the same result. Forcing or encouraging another to forgive is asking them to ignore what they've learned through experience.

For example a child in grade school gets harassed or beaten by a playground bully. A teacher witnesses the incident and sends both to the principal's office. In the office the tale is told and the principal admonishes the bully. Perhaps the bully receives a few days in after school detention. To wrap things up in a neat package he tells the assailant and the assailed to shake hands and go their ways with the bully pledging not to do this again.

It’s an ages old conflict although my example is mild and simplified. Sometimes this is enough to discourage bad behavior. Sometimes this is enough to convince the picked on to let their guard down. I think most can imagine a scenario where the bully finds his target again on another day, out of the teacher’s eye, and inflicts more damage now having been further angered by having been assigned detention. Have you ever seen or experienced such a scenario?

I think in the case of accidental harm forgiveness is easy and almost unwarranted. “Oh I’m so sorry, I didn’t see you there. Please pardon me for having bumped into you.” Or what about “Oh I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to hit your dog. He ran out of the bushes in front of my car. I couldn’t stop in time.” I think you can see where accidental events need little forgiveness. Perhaps in this case only forgiving yourself for allowing your dog to run loose.

But that’s not the crux of the OP’s thread. She’s talking forgiving intentional harm. I think that forgiveness if offered at all has to be directly from the victim without coercion or instruction. When there’s outside encouragement for the victim to forgive it is rarely for the betterment of the victim. I think encouragement of this type is usually aimed at getting the victim out of the way. “If you could see it in your heart to forgive her we can all get back to work.” Something along those lines. Or even from the offending party. “I’m so sorry your honor; I didn’t mean to pull the trigger. I didn’t intend to hurt anyone.” Or something along those lines. And anyone can see where BS of this type could stem from “In all honesty, I’m sorry I got caught your honor. If they hadn’t pulled over my car I’d be long gone. Hopefully this will convince the victim’s family to soften their view of me and convince you not to throw the book at me.” When was the last time you heard of a criminal going straight to the police and turning themselves in? "Honest, I just needed money, I never intended for this to happen." It's almost always a case of finding "Jailhouse Jesus".

Some people are asked by a church, a court, their friends and even their family to forgive the unforgivable. Why? For the betterment of the group and not the victim. "If we can get little Johnny past his being sexually assaulted, we can all get back to our lives." Who doesn't remember this: “Can’t we all just get along?” Yes, we all want things behind us but that comes to each of us in due time and to some of us never. We all have various societal pressures to “get along”. Sociopaths know this and take advantage of others. Thus we have among us those that eventually perform unforgiveable acts on others. How does this happen? Because somewhere along the way they were forgiven the unforgiveable. And just like when you learned from experience not to touch the hot stove, they learned that they would be forgiven the unforgiveable. And so they, like the playground bully, continue distributing the unforgiveable.

Those that actively and sincerely seek forgiveness generally find it. Those seeking forgiveness for selfish reasons rarely find true forgiveness. Those forced to forgive the unforgivable rarely find peace.

posted on Jul, 6 2009 @ 12:55 PM
I think this subject needs to be understood more thoroughly. Many of us refuse to understand or relate to what makes these people act like this and pass quick judgements to minimize the affect on ourselves. Many are more likely to forgive and forget for themselves, family and friends than others also.

Our own government minimizes their own crimes, such as military, white collar and or elite crimes and programs such as MKULTRA and yet, put many away for far less crimes in situations the system created and or ignored.

I had read somewhere that repressed memories aren't recognized as proof or witness of an actual event. That this is most likely a delusion or false memory implanted in some way, such as by regression hypnosis and now rejected in the courts?

Does a person need a functional MRI to possibly prove guilt or mental illness?

Then what? Tests results might even be manipulated.

The system is heavily flawed and needs it's own corrections. Too bad the taxpayers can't afford it now either.

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