Archive for January, 2018
Lately, when I have an argument with my boyfriend, I find myself bringing up old issues that I thought were behind me, for which I thought I had forgiven him. Do you think I truly have forgiven him for the past issues or not, given that I tend to bring them up?
It seems to me that you have begun the process of forgiving, because you state that forgiveness is part of you now. At the same time, I would recommend more forgiving work toward your boyfriend for those past events so that you can leave them in the past. Please keep in mind that still feeling some pain from past injustices is normal. It is the excessive anger from those incidents that you want to diminish and more forgiving should accomplish that in you.
When Evil Seems to Be Having Its Way
Lance Morrow: “Evil possesses an instinct for theater, which is why, in an era of gaudy and gifted media, evil may vastly magnify its damage by the power of horrific images.” If this is true, we need forgiveness all the more in our times.
Forgiveness is not justice and therefore focuses on effects, not direct solutions to injustice. When injustice reigns, it surely is the duty of communities to exercise justice to counter that which is unjust.
Yet, what then of the effects of the injustice? Will the quest for and the establishment of justice in societies suffice to cure the broken heart? We think not and this is where forgiveness is needed for those who choose it.
Is there a better way of destroying the damaging effects of evil than forgiveness? As a mode of peace, forgiveness is a paradox because at the same time it is a weapon, one that fights against the ravages of evil. By destroying resentment, forgiveness is a protection for individuals, families, groups, and societies.
Dr. Robert Enright to Keynote May 17-19 International Conference on Forgiveness
On Persistence for Well-Being
To grow in any virtue is similar to building muscle in the gym through persistent hard work. We surely do not want to overdo anything, including the pursuit of fitness.
Yet, we must avoid underdoing it, too, if we are to continue to grow. It is the same with forgiveness. We need to be persistently developing our forgiveness muscles as we become forgivingly fit. This opportunity is now laid out before you. What will you choose? Will you choose a life of diversion, comfort, and pleasure, or the more exciting life of risking love, challenging yourself to forgive, and helping others in their forgiveness fitness?
Enright, Robert D. (2012-07-05). The Forgiving Life (APA Lifetools) (Kindle Locations 5359-5360). American Psychological Association. Kindle Edition.
I have been deeply hurt by unjust family situations. This actually has changed who I am as a person. I now am less compassionate toward others. Should I just accept who I am now or do I try to change? As I try to forgive, I think I will begin to change as a person and I do not like that idea. What worries me is this: If I start to change this one thing, then off I go changing other things until I no longer am the same person. This scares me.
Whether or not you try to become more compassionate, one thing still is likely to happen: You will change. Life is about developing and therefore we do not stay static. You have been hurt and your trust has been damaged. As you practice forgiving, you are correct, you likely will change. You likely will become more compassionate and more trusting in general (but not necessarily toward those whom you should not trust). If you notice, those characteristics of compassion and trust are positive developments. Forgiveness could help change you in very good ways. Try to enjoy the positive transformation.