Archive for March, 2023
For those of you who have read the International Forgiveness Institute’s newsletters, news items, blogs, and other features on our website, you have our long-time Director, Dennis Blang, to thank for that. He has tirelessly shown a love for the moral virtue of forgiveness. He has long shown the moral virtue of perseverance as he has worked to constantly improve the website for the sake of those who want to know more about forgiveness and to make a better world.
It was Mr. Blang who contracted with web developers to constantly improve the site. Over the years he added the Research page, the forgiveness curriculum page, the videos from three different international conferences, the research scales page with free forgiveness instruments for all who are interested, and much more. There are close to 3,000 entries in what is the most comprehensive forgiveness website in the virtual world. For his efforts, this website was awarded The Best Websites of 2022 by The Good Estate, a multi-thematic review website where users can find high quality information about all kinds of digital and physical products. TheGoodEstate is a project of Global Commerce Media.
It was Mr. Blang who oversaw the development of our online education course, Forgiveness Therapy, and encouraged students as they moved forward in the book. I always was so impressed with the care he would take with each student, answering questions and clarifying correct answers when a student would inquire about the right answer.
I have been amazed at his breadth of knowledge about the state-of-the-art in the world regarding forgiveness. He frequently would pass news items and journal articles my way, asking if I had seen them. In the vast majority of cases, these were hidden gems worthy of our time and he was the first to find them, write about them, and then post information on them for you, the readers.
His care for the donors, who so wonderfully support the spread of forgiveness across the world, shows his love for forgiveness and his deep respect and appreciation for those who give of their own provisions for good. His emails to them always are sincere, supportive, and special.
His care for those who have taken the time to write to us is equally noteworthy. Those emails come to us from all over the world. Some people write in because they are hurting and need care. Mr. Blang has taken the time to care for them as he has suggested resources and professionals who can aid each one in their healing. He has treated each person as special, unique, and irreplaceable, giving the time and attention that each one needs. Only someone who has a love for forgiveness and a love for hurting people could sustain such an effort. Thank you for your caring, Mr. Blang.
Dennis Blang has been a gift to the world of forgiveness and for that I am deeply grateful. He now will be retiring, opening up new chapters in his life with his wife, Carol. We at the International Forgiveness Institute want to thank Mr. Blang for being a champion of forgiveness. Without him, we would not be as far down the road of forgiveness as we are now. Thank you so very much, Mr. Blang. Your work has been invaluable and we appreciate you perhaps even more than you realize.
My friend and I have a lot of conflicts and yet I do want to reconcile in the hope that these conflicts will be reduced. What would you suggest if such a reconciliation will be kind of rocky yet we both want to try?
I would recommend two points. First, are you both willing to forgive each other first so that you do not bring a lot of anger into dialogue with each other? Second, and if you are willing to forgive each other, what are the small steps each of you can take to help the other feel more trusting? In other words, what have you been doing to damage trust and can you take a small step in a better direction? Is your friend willing to do the same by taking small steps to build up your trust?
In my culture, filial piety is very important. This is a strong loyalty toward parents. I am emotionally unsettled because of how my father treated me in the past. Yet, I do not want to reconcile with my father. Do you recommend that I forgive if I can’t reconcile?
You can forgive without reconciling. Because of the importance of filial piety, your emotions may become more settled if you forgive and then, because of the past treatment, you do not have to approach your father, unless you are ready to do so.
No, you can forgive from your heart and you do not have to let the person know, especially if you already have decided that you will not reconcile.
I was hurt by a friend several years ago. When I think about forgiving, I know we will never reconcile and so I get lazy about forgiving. What are your thoughts about this?
If you still are emotionally unsettled because of what happened between you, then you can forgive and it likely will be in your best interest to do so. Reducing inner discontent is one good reason to offer forgiveness to this person.