Archive for April, 2020

I am a religious person and it seems to me that the cosmic perspective would work best with this kind of transcendent approach to life.  Do you agree or not?

Yes, those who have a religious perspective often can and are willing to take an eternal perspective on the one who harmed you.  In other words, the cosmic perspective asks you to go beyond the physical world and ask such questions as these: Is it possible that you might meet the other person in the afterlife?  Did God make this person and you?  If so, what does this mean about who this person is……and about who you are as a person?

For additional information, see The Personal, Global, and Cosmic Perspectives.

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Can you give me one major tip for helping a friend to consider forgiving a family member with whom he used to be very close?

As one tip, I would ask this: Suppose you do not forgive this person.  Further suppose that you meet this person 20 years from now.  How will you feel then if you continue to harbor resentment?  Now consider that you may forgive the person…….and you meet 20 years from now.  How will you feel then, having forgiven?  The contrast between the answers to these two questions might motivate your friend to consider forgiving sooner rather than later.

For additional information, see 8 Reasons to Forgive.

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How can I get rid of my anger if I do not confront the person at whom I am very angry?

It seems that you might be trying to seek justice or maybe even a bit of payback from the person.  I have found that the quest for justice does not always end this kind of anger.  In fact, the quest for justice sometimes can increase the anger if the justice is not realized.  A more sure way of reducing your anger is to try to forgive, but only if you are ready to do so.  You can forgive without the other person being present by engaging in the exercises of what we call the personal, global, and cosmic perspectives.  The gist of these exercises is to see the other in a much broader context than the hurts against you. Try to see the wounds in the other; try to see the common humanity that both of you share.  Such perspectives do take time and so please be gentle with yourself during this time.

For additional information, see The Personal, Global, and Cosmic Perspectives.

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I don’t want to forgive a certain person because I am so fuming at what she did.  I simply refuse to think about this person.  Out of sight in this case means out of mind.  I think I will be fine, but I am checking in with you for your opinion.

It is important to realize that when you are “so fuming” it is not necessarily easy to be rid of that anger.  The idea of out of sight and out of mind is not so easily achieved because the emotion of anger is not always controlled by the mind.  The anger, in other words, can resurface.  If you find this happening to you, then you might consider forgiving.

For additional information, see Why Forgive? 

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I am innocent of all charges against me!  My friend thinks I was insensitive.  I disagree.  Should I apologize even if I think I was not offensive?

You do not have to offer a specific apology such as, “I am sorry that I did X.”  Instead, you might want to say something like this, “I am sorry that what I said made you angry.”  Saying this with sincerity might help.  As you can see, you are not saying that you did something offensive.  You are saying that you are feeling badly that your friend was hurt.

For additional information, see Why Forgive?

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