- Religion and Philosophy
Is There Sacrifice in Forgivness?
The short answer to this question is "Yes". When you choose to forgive, you sacrafice your right to "justice".
Let me be clear on what forgiveness is NOT:
- It is not pretending that what happened was right.
- It is not pretending that what happened didn't hurt.
- It is not "explaining it way" as the result of bad environment or bad circumstances.
- It is not necessarily the avoidence of consequences of actions. (For example you can choose to forgive a criminal who hurts you and still testify against them in court, and they may still go to jail.)
When you forgive, you sacrafice your right to "moral superiority". You sacrafice your right to tell everybody how badly you were hurt. You sacrafice your right to have that person treated as a social outcast.
You grant that forgiven person the right to look you in the eye without fear of accusation and without shame for the offense. So, you sacrafice the right to have the offender shamed before you.
And what do you gain from this sacrafice? You gain freedom from internal torment. You get release from the nagging thoughts of what they did to you. You gain the ability to sleep. You gain freedom from anger. You gain the opportunity for a restored relationship.
Yes, there is sacrafice in forgiveness. But the gain is greater.