Tagged: “indifference”

Is indifference toward the person who hurt me considered something negative in the forgiveness process?  I am feeling indifferent.  In the past, the feeling was much more negative than this.

Indifference is not a moral virtue and so it is not what forgiveness is. Yet, feeling indifference may be a transition out of hatred.  If you had deep anger or hatred and now you are indifferent toward the one who hurt you, then you are making progress in forgiving. There is more to your forgiveness journey than this.  Why?  It is because the one who hurt you is a person and all persons can be treated with kindness, respect, generosity, and even love.  So, I urge you to stay on your important forgiveness journey.  Please be encouraged because it seems that you are making progress.

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I really do not understand this pie-in-the-sky idea that I must feel positively toward the people whom I forgive.  How about just some indifference toward them?

Think of forgiveness as a process.  We start out with anger or sadness or some other emotion that we find unpleasant.  As we grow in the moral virtue of forgiveness, the anger (or sadness) begins to diminish and we then can develop a kind of indifference toward that person. Yet, over time, and because forgiveness is a  moral virtue, we might continue to grow even more deeply in our appreciation of the other as a person.  This can lead to compassion, respect, generosity, and even love (the kind of love that is willing to be in service to the other for the other’s sake) toward that person.  So, you might want to think of indifference as one stop on the journey to greater perfection in the growth of this moral virtue of forgiveness.

For additional information, see The Four Phases of Forgiveness. 

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