November 30, 2014 at 9:00 PM (Uncategorized)

Time and time again, you read or hear about the virtues of forgiveness. Forgiveness by itself is supposed to be good both for the forgiver and the recipient both physically and mentally. The darker side of my setup has always been opposed to forgiveness just for its own sake. I’m revising that a little bit but I know that some readers who think about both spiritual and moral matters quite a bit might think that I don’t go far enough. But I am going a certain length. I am moving in a positive direction.

Grudges that are moderately new but still have the burnish on them,no,  this isn’t one of those. Nor is it one of those mid-level nineties or 2000 grudges that is quite a bit far back in the rearview mirror but the circumstances indicate then I’m not even allowed to either ask for forgiveness or offer it to the people in question because that would violate their edicts that I never communicate with them again. No this is an oldie.

I won’t talk about the nature of the grudge or who is involved directly. I’ll just say that I have one question to put on the table for the general readership. It won’t change my mind about forgiving this person. I intend to do so and I’m going to. It’s more about the definition of forgiveness. Since I’m such a rare forgiver  I wonder? Does forgiveness mean that I have to put the contours of their life first in my thoughts  or make it a point to talk to them again?

Because if that’s what forgiveness means, like I’ve still got more growing up to do.

Civility, and warm sincere inquiries about their family it’s something I think I can manage should it come up. I don’t want to seek this person out. But I think I can forgive. I think I can do that but I need to know what the general idea of forgiveness is among my readers and it depends on what I see.

Are you allowed to forgive someone and still not seek them out? In other words if they arrived at your door you’ve got to be person enough to invite them to have a seat, but you yourself wouldn’t necessarily send out an invitation. Is that enough? And if people think it’s silly to ask this question, I ask it because as I’ve said forgiveness has been a hard thing to learn how to do. I don’t do it often and I don’t do it easily. I should. It’s a leftover from the Mcwherter temper and childhood difficulty that I’m trying to get rid of.


1 Comment

  1. bridgett said,

    Interesting question. The “we must get together and chat, it’s been far too long” is different — that’s reconciliation. Nor is forgiveness coming to the peace that it was what it was and deciding not to revisit that wound further — that’s called acceptance. For me, forgiveness is “acceptance plus” — acknowledging that shit happened and coming to peace, but also coming to terms with my own insufficiencies, the role I’ve played in helping to screw things up or keep them screwed up (so, accountability and getting my ego out of the way). That allows me to come to a place where I can let go all the way and acknowledge that the person is out (all the way out) of my life.

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