What Does (or Might) It Mean to Forgive?

    (This is the third in a series of reflections on Simon Wiesenthal’s The Sunflower.) In his response to The Sunflower, Rabbi Arthur Waskow wishes to ask the Nazi in the story, “What would it mean for me to “forgive” you?”  It is a key question.  Before any considerations of whether Simon Wiesenthal “should” have forgiven the dying[…]

Forgiveness and the Absence of God

(This is the second in a series of reflections on Simon Wiesenthal’s classic The Sunflower: on the possibilities and limits of forgiveness.) “I read somewhere that it is impossible to break a man’s firm belief.  If ever I thought that were true, life in a concentration camp taught me differently.  It is impossible to believe[…]

The Sunflower: considering the possibilities and limits of forgiveness

The Sunflower is a remarkable, disturbing, and evocative book; the kind that will not let you go.  The author, Simon Wiesenthal, was a holocaust survivor.  Here, he writes vividly of his experiences as a resident of the Jewish ghetto in Lemburg (now Lviv,Ukraine) and as a prisoner in the Janowska concentration camp during the Nazi occupation. […]

Risking Expanded Heart Space

“People came (to social media) with pre-made ideas and put them into their binary boxes of how they want to see the political world right now.”  –Noam Shuster-Eliassi On October 7th of last year, forces of Hamas launched horrific attacks on communities in southern Israel.  The savagery that has been revealed included the murder of[…]

The Movement of Forgiveness

“Far from being the pious injunction of a Utopian dreamer, the command to love one’s enemy is an absolute necessity for our survival. Love even for enemies is the key to the solution of the problems of our world.  Jesus is not an impractical idealist: He is a practical realist. . .  We must develop[…]

Moral Injury, Forgiveness, and Atonement

(This dialogue is the second of a series originally published in 2017 at http://www.breathingforgiveness.net) As a combat veteran, I have killed others.  In war those killed on the ground, up close and personal, are called enemies.  Later on in a veteran’s life he or she becomes more conscious of a nagging feeling, uncertainty or doubt that[…]

Healing Soul Wounds of War

  (This content was first published in 2017 in Yago Abeledo’s outstanding site, Breathing Forgiveness: http://www.breathingforgiveness.net ). Glen Miller is a veteran of the Vietnam War.  He served as an Army Ranger Team Leader from September 1969-September 1970.  Six men made up a standard Army Ranger combat patrol.  Glen has also been  an adjunct professor[…]

Compassion, Memory, and a New Future

“Compassion bears the pain of the past.  It does no longer try to accuse, to suppress, to condemn, to refuse.  It allows memories to uncover the origins of shame and hurt.  Such memories will bring deep sorrow.  But it is through sorrow and grief that we will set each other free from the chains of[…]

Forgiving Our Society

“Yes, in a gospel sense, forgiveness is unilateral in declaring liberation from deathly retributive cycles while practicing the freedom of assertive love.  It is about recognizing the image of God somewhere in even the worst offender.  But this love is also committed to dignity, to re-membering all that has been dis-membered, to truth-telling, to the[…]

The Art of Apology

“When the apology meets an offended person’s needs, he does not have to work at forgiving.  Forgiveness comes spontaneously; the victim  feels like his offender has released him of a burden or offered him a gift.” –Aaron Lazare* Aaron Lazare has done some important study on the dynamics of apology, and the role it plays[…]

2024 The Forgiveness Lab | Admin

Site by 343 Consulting