Tagged: “give a gift”
I am ambivalent about “giving a gift” to the one who offended me. I do not think he will accept it. This likely will make me angry all over again. What do you suggest?
A complete sense of forgiving, or the essence of what forgiving is, includes this giving of a gift to the one who hurt you. Yet, you do not have to reach the deepest sense of forgiving to be practicing this moral virtue. If you are not ready to give a gift and if you have reduced your resentment and commit to do no harm to the one who hurt you, then you are forgiving at this point.
There seem to be two questions here: 1) Should I consider giving a gift to someone with whom I choose not to have any further contact; and, 2) How can I give such a gift? Here is my answer to the “should” question: Forgiveness is about giving, even to those with whom you are angry and estranged. This is part of the paradox of forgiving: As you reach out in goodness to those who were not good to you, then you experience psychological healing. Therefore, it is morally appropriate and psychologically prudent to consider giving a gift, if you choose to forgive. The second question, regarding how it is even possible to give a gift to someone whom you will not see again is this: You can contribute to a charity in the person’s name. You can pray for the person if you have a religious belief. You even can say a kind word about the person to someone else.
May I follow-up on my question about forgiving one’s mother if she is deceased? You mention that part of forgiving is to try, within reason, to give a gift to the one who acted unfairly. How can one give a gift to a deceased person?
You can give an indirect gift to one who is deceased. For example, you can donate to a charity in the person’s name. You can share a kind word about the person to other family members, knowing that the deceased person was more than the injustices against you. If you are a person of faith, you can say a prayer for the person. So, it is possible to practice giving a gift even to those who no longer are with us.