thetisd theoktisti

Assistant Accountant, Cegedim Relationship Management

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Could we really bear to forgive?

Concerned about how many mistakes we have made. Some of them might had an great impact or influence in somebody's life , yet we might had been influenced by our mistakes. How the situations are after one had made a great mistake such as betrayal? Do we have the power of forgiveness? The real forgiveness , that forgiveness which you are really able to forgive and continue in that same life situation with the same feelings for that person as there were before..
On the other hand when we do make mistakes, do we really bear to look other eye by eye? look him in that way that we would be able to continue our lives with him as there were before...
In both we just pretend to?
Honestly..what forgiveness is..I
Is it a feeling that we can handle of it ? or Is it a power of an upper God?

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    May 9 2013: Regarding could we really bear to forgive?

    I appreciate a neurological model of forgiveness.

    Could you please telling me what is your thoughts regarding the neurological model of forgiveness?

    In Joy
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      May 9 2013: Hello Lamb Lamb:>)
      This makes perfect sense to me. I believe emotional pain, hurt, anger, frustration, etc. stems from fear, as the article seems to suggest. When we hold onto fear, it makes sense that it would impact our neurological functions because everything is interconnected. When we forgive, we give a gift to ourselves. I don't think forgiveness has much to do with the person we is for our own peace of mind....literally! Perhaps we are actually forgiving ourselves for blaming and judging?

      Another thing we can do is not blame or judge, and then we do not have anything to forgive:>)
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        May 10 2013: Hi lamb lamb and Colleen, this make sense to me too. We forgive for our mental and biological balance. For our internal piece.
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    May 8 2013: Forgive the person but not the act.

    Realize that what you see is a reflection of you.

    For more info you might watch "Groundhog Day".
    • May 8 2013: Pat, "Groundhog Day" is indeed profound!
      Perhaps life really is full of 'do-overs', chances for us to 'get it right'?
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        May 8 2013: I suppose they did the do over thing to make a point.

        Tomorrow is brand new. A person's life is an accumulation of his decisions in an endless stream. The funny part is that when he blames it is akin to a parrot biting at a mirror as illustrated in the movie.

        You might say free market zen was illustrated in Murray's character as he received the fruit of what he exchanged.
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          May 8 2013: I'm really big on do-overs these days!
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          May 9 2013: Pat, thanks for your replying
          I bear in mind your thoughts , thanks for the movie AND thanks for learning me the free market zen, i am getting started it :) Nice to meet you
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      May 8 2013: I agree with your perspective Pat:>)

      "Forgive the person...not the act"
      People are generally being you say..."an accumulation of...decisions in an endless stream".

      Sometimes, the decisions another person makes do not please us, so we blame that person for causing us to feel hurt, angry, frustrated, etc. If we accept responsibility for what we feel, there is no reason to blame the other person, and no reason to forgive anything. Yes indeed....tomorrow is brand new.....the first day of the rest of our lives. What is the point in starting that day with blame and judgement in our heart? I can see no useful purpose for that.

      We are, as you say, mirrors to each other, reflecting information back and forth all the time. When we realize this, there is no reason to hold another person accountable for our feelings. To have something to forgive, we would first have had to blame and judge, which I do not perceive to be a very valuable practice.
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        May 8 2013: You have so much of wisdom Colleen, why don't you run for President? Sure, America will have better days under your leadership.
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          May 8 2013: Oh my goodness Kiran, thank you! Unfortunately (or fortunately) I have other things to do right now!!!
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        May 8 2013: But no comment about free market zen?
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          May 8 2013: Pat,
          I don't know what free market zen is. Want to help me understand that?
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        May 8 2013: It is nothing more than exchange and the quality of the exchange.

        In the beginning of Ground hog day the main character exchanged with people through a dis-indigenous (attitude wise) weather report and belittling sarcasm. People do not exchange well with sarcasm people take real offense to that, as did his love interest.

        As the movie goes on he decides to kill himself out of exasperation obviously a poor exchange to himself and others to do that.

        Then he goes thought a spiritual metamorphosis where he starts confronting life as it is not good or bad. At this point he start exchanging with people in abundance changing their tire, catching children who fall out of a tree, entertaining them with with incredible music and sculpture, etc.

        This is the way the free market works, if you exchange with people poorly they exchange with you poorly, if you exchange in abundance they reciprocate. The reward in this is not just money there is more zen to it than that. Most people think of big evil corporations not how they exchange and raise the standard of living of people with abundance.
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          May 8 2013: OH thanks!

          What goes around, comes around, do unto others...

          "Life begets life,
          Energy creates energy,
          It is by spending oneself that one becomes rich" :>)
        • May 9 2013: Colleen,
          I am trying to reply to your question, "what happens when we do not label actions/reactions positive or negative? ", but the reply is way up here!!

          What happens - utopia, I would imagine!!!
          Labeling and categorizing is what makes and keeps us segregated, alienates us from each other. So you're absolutely right - whether a reaction is positive or negative is completely irrelevant! Both deserve our attention!
        • May 11 2013: This reply is for Thetisd - for some reason I can't reply to your comment...

          You said, "you must have a great clarity of thoughts to take the responsibility of your feelings yet to control them".
          By no means, am I in control of my feelings! And I don't know if I'd want to, either.
          I did learn how to become aware of them, and accept them, even when I didn't necessarily want to.
          Feelings, emotions, intuition - these things are as controllable as breathing, or allowing our heart to beat!

          Acceptance of what you can't control, but what is very much a natural part of you, is where balance can begin.
      • May 9 2013: "...there is no reason to hold another person accountable for our feelings. "
        Indeed, Colleen!
        Our feelings are our own - thank goodness! They are ours to treasure and to cherish, and when we feel secure, to share. Feelings - so personal yet so universal!

        Newton's law states, ""For every action force there is an equal, but opposite, reaction force"
        Now, what happens with every positive action?
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          May 9 2013: Yes Lizanne, I also believe our feelings are our own. When we hold onto hurt, anger, frustration, fear, etc. because of someone elses actions or words, we give up responsibility for our own feelings. And yes, when we feel secure, we can share our feelings without expectations that another person will act/react in a certain way.

          Regarding Newton's law:
          "When one body exerts a force on a second body, the second body simultaneously exerts a force equal in magnitude and opposite in direction to that of the first body."

          "Newton's laws are applied to objects which are idealized as single point masses", and "laid the foundation for classical mechanics".

          Are human feelings "single point masses"? Can Newton's law be applied to human feelings? I suppose in some respects, depending on our interpretation.

          "If a body impinges upon another, and by its force changes the motion of the other, that body also (because of the equality of the mutual pressure) will undergo an equal change, in its own motion, toward the contrary part. The changes made by these actions are equal, not in the velocities but in the motions of the bodies; that is to say, if the bodies are not hindered by any other impediments. For, as the motions are equally changed, the changes of the velocities made toward contrary parts are reciprocally proportional to the bodies. This law takes place also in attractions, as will be proved in the next scholium.[32]"

          Now, what happens when we do not label actions/reactions positive or negative?
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          May 9 2013: Hope you don't mind if I move your comment here to keep it in sequence....

          "Lizanne Hennessey
          40 minutes ago: Colleen,
          I am trying to reply to your question, "what happens when we do not label actions/reactions positive or negative? ", but the reply is way up here!!

          What happens - utopia, I would imagine!!!
          Labeling and categorizing is what makes and keeps us segregated, alienates us from each other. So you're absolutely right - whether a reaction is positive or negative is completely irrelevant! Both deserve our attention!"

          I suggest that it is only in our perception that an action/reaction is negative or positive. When we can let go of the need to catagorize actions/reactions/people, it feels very freeing. The practice of blaming, judging, and catagorizing does indeed keep us seperated, and also, causes a great deal of stress/distress in our "self".

          How much time and energy is spent rehashing pain, anger, frustration, etc., that we may feel someone else causes, when, in fact, we are causing the feelings/emotions in ourselves with the choice to hold onto those feelings/emotions? I like the article Lamb Lamb provided regarding what this behavior does to our brain and neurological function.
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          May 10 2013: Coleen & Lizanne I can't agree more! I am to adopt your ideas into practice in my daily life. It's very difficult , how do you achieve such a balance & serenity? Because you must have a great clarity of thoughts to take the responsibility of your feelings yet to control them...its really hard for us to handle ourselves when we face something bad..Do you practice yoga or something ?do you think positively in every situation? Colleen how nice is that you visit periodically to Greece! Who knows we might drink a cup of coffee in time!
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          May 11 2013: Hello again Thetisd:>)

          You ask..."how do you achieve such a balance & serenity"?

          I think/feel one of the most important factors is to "know thyself". Know where our thoughts and feelings are coming from. Are we acting/reacting because of our ego? Are we reacting with words or actions based on external programming.....what someone may think about us? Are we clear about what we think/feel in any given moment? Do we express ourselves clearly? Why might the words or actions of other people "bother" us?
          These are the kinds of questions I have asked myself over the years to find clarity in my "self".

          I agree takes clarity of thought to take the responsibility of your feelings yet to control them...

          It does not feel like "control" to feels like another perspective/perception.
          Change our thinking, we sometimes change our feelings, which may change our life experience:>)

          For example:
          Someone says something to us....we can interpret it as hurtful....blame that person for hurting us....carry the emotional pain, blame, anger, frustration, etc.
          If we know ourself well enough, and realize that what the person is saying has nothing to do with who and what we are, we do not have to choose to be upset, hurt, angry, etc.

          Knowing our "self" also helps when facing challenges. The more information we have about the situation and ourselves, the better we can face a challenge.
          Does that make any sense?

          I practice yoga, and have integrated it into my life. When I'm standing in line somewhere, talking on the phone, gardening, painting my home, etc., I am often in a yoga position. It serves to balance, stretch, and tone the body/mind. I started doing yoga years ago to help support a chronic back/spine issue:>)

          "do you think positively in every situation?"

          I do not catagorize thoughts as positive or negative. Thoughts are simply thoughts, and may provide information.

          My friends live in Pylos.....yes.....we may share time would be lovely:>)
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        May 9 2013: Hi Colleen ,nice to meet you,thanks for your replying.
        I liked your quotes ! I was impressed by your sayings 'To have something to forgive, we would first have had to blame and judge, which I do not perceive to be a very valuable practice.' and 'If we accept responsibility for what we feel, there is no reason to blame the other person, and no reason to forgive anything'
        Does it mean that they are all related to our feelings? I mean that if we take responsibility for what we feel , can we eliminate or ignore our pain?
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          May 9 2013: Hello Thetisd....very nice to meet you too:>)

          No, I do not suggest ignoring anything, and believe it is very important to recognize ALL our feelings and emotions. It is beneficial to feel pain. I do not think/feel that it is beneficial to hold onto pain.

          With the recognition of ALL our feelings, we understand that what we are feeling belongs totally to us, and not to another person. A person may do or say something horrible to us, and how we act or react is a choice....... KNOW THYSELF.

          If a person says something demeaning, cruel, unkind to, or about me for example, that is a reflection of the person saying it, and doesn't have anything to do with me. I listen to the information and evaluate it as information. Could there be any truth in the information? Am I like that?

          I have gotten enough feedback, and evaluated myself enough in my life to know my "self" pretty well. I consider ALL information to evaluate whether or not it applies to me, and my actions/reactions reflect that process to the best of my ability at any given time.

          I think/feel it is important to genuinely consider the information, rather than instantly be hurt with a "knee jerk" reaction. It helps to give ourselves that evaluation time. Does that comment honestly reflect something about me? Does that person's actions have anything to do with me? Another person's actions, are that person's choice....are they not?

          Good discussion topic Thetisd, and BTW.....I LOVE Greece....I have friends there and visited a couple times:>)
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    May 7 2013: There is no such thing as forgive and forget. We can choose to forgive, but forgetting is not an option. The memory is never erased in the mind. We simply choose to not allow it to take control.

    If a person is truly sorry, then forgiveness can allow you to restore a broken relationship and heal from the hurt that it caused. It's a two way street. Forgiveness does not heal a broken relationship if the other person refuses to acknowledge that what they did was wrong. It's a matter of trust. Is the other person willing to make amends to restore that trust? Or are they just playing a game?

    As far as is it a power of an upper God? The only upper God is love. If you can command the power of love, then you can choose to love someone despite their faults. It's all up to you. What sacrifices are you willing to make to love someone else no matter what? Just remember, you can't do it alone. The other person has to be willing to do their part, otherwise, you are allowing yourself to be the victim.
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      May 7 2013: Hi Roy, thanks for your replying,
      Your thoughts are very interesting. Its very helpfull and understandable for me that you distinguish forgive and forget! Its another point of view that i couldnt thought about..!
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    May 12 2013: Coleen, very nice perception I feel so glad that it was given me the opportunity to hear this perception. I feel that I must put your words in a piece of paper and tack it on my wall! ( so as I can do practice every day!:) I live in Athens but in the summer i am going to Kalamata periodically( it is near to Pylos!) :)
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      May 12 2013: Thanks for your feedback Thetisd:>)

      I do that too, when I discover something that resonates with me....tack it up all over the house as a reminder!

      I have been to Kalamata to get DELICIOUS olives! Even though my friends family have a pretty big olive grove in Pylos, we travel to Kalamate to get more olives...LOL:>)
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    May 11 2013: to forgive is to let go the pain. it is not important who caused the pain, how and why.
    to let go the pain is not necessarily to forget.
    when you can't forgive you can't be happy.
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    May 11 2013: ....again, could we really bear to forgive?
    Forgiveness & Happiness are the “vital topic” for Us.
    Forgiveness is when you can say " it was because these experiences " or " thanks for this experience ".
    To be a whole person is to be a state where you have experienced forgiveness and happiness.
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      May 12 2013: As long as we bear to live we bear to forgive, due to the all conversation I feel it's a vital combination of forgiveness and to feel alive
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    May 10 2013: When we forgive, let us forgive the right person, even if the right person is ourselves.
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      May 11 2013: Good point Anna. I think/feel forgiveness is generally more for ourselves, rather than for the person we are forgiving. To have something to forgive, we would have blamed, which tends to cause anger, frustration, emotional pain etc., which we carry in our heart and mind until we forgive.

      You probably read what Lamb Lamb submitted regarding the neurological effects? It makes a lot of sense to me that holding onto the feelings of blame has a physical and emotional impact.
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        May 12 2013: Thanks for replying, Colleen and Bernard.

        If a person that is to blame doesn't accept neither the responsibility, nor the blame/shame, who can we forgive? Should we then fight or seek revenge, or... ignore? Maybe make this person understand? This may not be effortless, and will also have emotional and physical impact.
        Just wondering what you think.
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          May 14 2013: Maybe we can forgive ourselves Anna, as you said in a previous comment?

          Fighting and seeking revenge has not been a choice that I prefer. It seems like that would cause even more discomfort in ourselves. We would be continuing to hold onto the blame/shame/hurt.

          I don't think we can "make" another person understand anything. We can offer our own thoughts and feelings, and understanding is the choice of the other person. As you recognize, this may take effort, and cause more emotional and physical impact. If we try to explain our feelings and the other person does not want to understand, it may cause us to be even more hurt and disappointed.

          I believe it is good to recognize all of our thoughts, feelings and emotions, and spend our time and energy understanding our "self"....maybe forgiving our "self".....respecting and loving ourselves with compassion and empathy.
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        May 14 2013: Thank you, Collen.

        But what if fighting, or chosing to fight/research/learn, helps others?
        Just a thought.
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          May 16 2013: I am all for research and learning Anna! Since I believe that we are all connected, I think/feel that when we help others, we also help ourselves:>)

          As I said....fighting has never been my choice, because I saw that demonstrated way too often as a child, with my violent, abusive father. Most of the time, it seemed like he was fighting with himself, and causing havoc with everyone around him.

          I really think/feel that if he had ever faced his own emotional challenges, he would not have been fighting so much. I perceive those who want to fight all the time as people who are manifesting their own anger, frustration, impatience, discontent, distress, etc. If we do not have those challenges in our "self", there is no reason to my perception:>)
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        May 16 2013: Hi Colleen,

        I think you misunderstood.

        Fighting is not about seeking revenge, at least not for me. Fighting is not seeking retribution. And some things, some forms of injustice that me and my boyfriend had to bear are just too scary to let go.
        Here are some mottos I made for myself to help bear the injustice and the vast, disgraceful misunderstandings:

        The fact that you're misunderstood doesn't mean you misunderstand.

        Just because others lie doesn't mean you have to.

        I am a kind, conflicted soul that cannot bear certain things. I used to run around town criticising unethical or improper behaviour of the police, public transport or trying to find, identify and present any sort of danger or nonsense in a regional newspaper. That danger/nonsense was an effect or cause of either misuse, prejudice or just plain stupidity. I've seen, heard and experienced too much of all of that.

        Now I travel around teaching work safety, trying to do what I can so that my partner and I can have a peaceful, normal life pursuing our interests, giving each other comfort and love.

        That's my fight and I will continue it if given the chance and possibility.

        I'm sorry if the tone in this comment seems strong, I'm just trying to explain my standpoint.
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          May 16 2013: Hi again Anna,
          It seems like it is our interpretation of "fight" that influences our individual perception?

          Fight, according to the dictionary means...
          "to contend in battle or physical combat: to strive to overcome a person by blows or weapons; to put forth a determined effort....."

          Perhaps I am considering the entire meaning, and you are looking at the part which is putting forth a determined effort?
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        May 16 2013: Fight, according to the dictionary means...
        "to contend in battle or physical combat: to strive to overcome a person by blows or weapons; to put forth a determined effort....."

        Perhaps I am considering the entire meaning, and you are looking at the part which is putting forth a determined effort?

        Yes, maybe. I could have added personal struggle/survival etc, I chose a simplification, sorry :)
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          May 16 2013: No problem Anna, as long as we can understand each other....that is the important part to me:>)

          In my perception, I don't EVER fight. I like to negotiate, seek resolution and solutions, use certain processes to encourage and support a good, peaceful end result, and my process does not include the feeling of personal struggle, or attempt to "overcome" another person in any way.

          As I've already mentioned on this thread, if we do not blame, accuse and judge, there is nothing to seek forgiveness for, and that is how I like to live my's just my own personal choice:>)

          So, even with situations like my "wistle blower" role with a toxic business. They threatened my life, damaged my home and property, and wrote all kinds of untrue things about me as they were "fighting" the process. I kept a steady course, working with the USEPA, state environmental board and environmental courts. I did not respond to the "fighting" activities of the toxic business owners. I did not "struggle" with them. My role was challenging, and I chose to do that....I did not choose to fight.
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        May 16 2013: "No problem Anna, as long as we can understand each other....that is the important part to me:>)

        In my perception, I don't EVER fight. I like to negotiate, seek resolution and solutions, use certain processes to encourage and support a good, peaceful end result, and my process does not include the feeling of personal struggle, or attempt to "overcome" another person in any way."

        Thank you, Colleen, I support all that wholeheartedly!
        You're such a kind soul :)
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          May 16 2013: Thank you Anna, it is much more enjoyable than the alternative. You are a kind and considerate person as well my friend:>)
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      May 11 2013: However, surely there must some form of retribution or "acceptance of responsibility" before forgiveness can be earned?
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      May 12 2013: How nice Anna!thanks for your replying
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    May 8 2013: Nice to meet you thetisd theoktisti!
    An interesting question! Hopefully you shall enjoy me answer.
    I'v made many mistakes in my life, to be honest. Yet I have always been willing to admit them, and when I'm wrong, hey I'm wrong. But not without giving my argument first, and making sure they are actually "wrong".
    Also there is nothing wrong with sometimes "agreeing to disagree".
    A great TED Talk I would reccomend you :
    Kathryn Schulz: On being wrong :
    And two great books, which I think you would benefit you :
    - Being Wrong: Adventures in the Margin of Error by Kathryn Schulz
    - Mistakes Were Made (but Not by Me): Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions and Hurtful Acts by Carol Tavris and Elliot Aronson.
    Here is the wiki page :
    Both excellent books, which give insightful opinions on this matter, of why we find it so difficult to "admit we'r wrong".

    Now with forgiveness...
    I don't believe forgiveness is "a power of an upper God", mainly because I am agnostic about a form of personal God. Unless of-course you are defining "Forgiveness" as something "divine" or "God-like".
    I mean I personally have forgiven many in my limited life.
    I simply don't really know. Maybe I'm too foolish for this world.
    However I view a form of retribution is sometimes necessary before forgiveness can be given.
    I could go on for quite a while about this topic, but I feel I would just bore you!
    However, I have always been interested in what makes people go "bad". And I find most of it has to do with "dehumanization" of the other person, believing they "deserve" the suffering they get. For most humans are quite empathetic, under most circumstances (towards their in-group). Yet there are many method to reduce empathy to almost nill.
    Which if you want I could tell you about, in another reply!
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      May 9 2013: Hallo Bernard, nice to meet you too,
      Thanks for your recommendations, i am curious to read the book. And i have a question for you..In the cases that you hadnt forgiven, how did you feel? I mean about your feelings..about yourself..Did you feel better or not?If you had a choice again what did you do ? We assumed that you know which your feelings are when you forgive and which your feelings are when you do not forgive...( and as for the 'what makes the people go bad', i agree in some point with your opinion but i believe also that poor quality of somebodys life and poor knowledge have their responsibilities too -but it had to be said in another reply :) )
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        May 9 2013: Hello again!
        I hope you enjoy me recommendations! :D
        With your questions.
        It completely depended on the circumstance, I mean usually yes I did feel better once I had forgiven someone. And most of the events in my life, have ended up with me forgiving them, and them forgiving me.
        Yet sometimes it is hard. I mean take some people on You-tube for instance, you make a point to them and you get called a "f****** m****". I don't feel much sympathy of intolerant irrational people.
        Again it depends on so many variables, as to whether the forgiveness felt good.
        I mean if Hitler (after coming back from the dead) admitted to me his mistakes, then I might forgive him, yet I might not.
        Sorry if this answer has been quite unhelpful!
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        May 12 2013: Thanks! :D
        Some thumbs up would be nice! :P
        No but seriously, I find it very difficult to forgive "intolerant irrational people" (sometimes called "Trolls" on You-Tube) who have not done any research into their claims, and refuse to admit their mistakes (even when they "know" they are wrong).
        I find those people very difficult to forgive!
        However, luckily there are no people like that on TED! :D (Hope I'm not sounding too arrogant, I must admit sometimes I am slightly "irrational", yet when I realize my mistake. I admit it!)
  • May 7 2013: People can forgive. God can also help you forgive, but He can't do it for you. I know people who have completely moved on from terrible acts of abuse and heartbreak. Willpower may not be enough. That's ok, we're not alone here.
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      May 9 2013: Hi Scot, thanks for your replying.
      Oh, i think that you had learnt by these people. You should had taken great power in your life by them..Of course willpower may not be enough but it inspires action..Nice to meet you
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    R H

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    May 7 2013: Absolutely we must forgive. If we do not forgive, who carries the pain? We do. The pain is often too much to bear, and can destroy us, turn us cynical, withdrawn, or destructive - that alone is sufficient to forgive. But on the other hand, have you ever wished to be forgiven by someone (I'm sure your have)? How do you feel about the other person if they have forgiven you - truly forgiven, not just lip-service - and embraced you and cried with you and asked for your forgiveness for being so angry? If we do not forgive, what is the result? We want to change the world, but not forgive. We want to remember and carry the anger, the disappointment, the horrors, under the guise that we should not forget and 'know', and so it doesn't happen again. But what do we breed in that? Fear, anger, suspicion, condemnation (notwithstanding the ill and sociopathic). Let the historians record so we can reference our past when needed, but let's regard each other as we would want to be regarded ourselves, knowing how hard we try, how often we, either directly or indirectly, cause pain. Will we be hurt again? Will we be disappointed? Yes on both accounts. But what does it matter? We are our own destiny, so choose to forgive, and do not give life to the agonies and horrors and foolishness of others - or our own, but give life to peace, excellence, patience, conversion, growth - forgiveness. As the saying goes: We need to become the change we want to see in the world. For me, it starts with forgiveness, and it's not easy. Think of it another way, who profits from our anger with each other, our hatred, our self-righteousness, our division? Who profits from support of our 'security' and 'safety'? And how big are those profits? Now, how do we profit from peace and harmony?
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      May 7 2013: Hi RH thanks for your replying,
      I am stunned by the way that you approach the subject..A deeper point of view..I totally agree that the pain is more unbearable when you do not forgive , it ruins any piece of your humanity.. I ll bear in my mind your thoughts!
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        R H

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        May 8 2013: Thank you, thetisd, for your kindness. You have already forgiven for forgiving me my brashness and pomposity, and returning it with kindness. I've said nothing new. We've heard it all since the ancients, yet continue to allow our pain and fear to subdue us, keeping us from transforming into the magnificent beings we ascribe to be. Abraham Lincoln is credited with saying: "Am I not defeating my enemies by making friends of them?" May it begin with forgiveness.
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          May 9 2013: RH,
          :) No, you used very strict words for yourself..I would say that you were spoken passionately. When we believe that something is absolutely true we indulge in our feelings...
    • May 8 2013: Extremely well said, R H.
      "We need to become the change we want to see in the world. For me, it starts with forgiveness, and it's not easy. "
      Respect means being able to view things from another perspective, it requires empathy, it doesn't mean we have to all love one another, but it can only exist when we truly love ourselves.
      Could there ever be unconditional respect for one another?
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        R H

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        May 8 2013: Thanks Lizanne. In response to your question, there has to be. But I believe it must go beyond respect (and I assume you mean 'one's right to be who they are', notwithstanding the ill and sociopathic who need help). In my opinion, we must celebrate,seek out, and highlight the gifts, skills, talents, attributes we all 'bring to the table', rather than accentuate with ridicule our differences as how much they interfere with what we're trying to accomplish, how it would be 'so much easier' if we were all the same and so forth. This, of course, relates to so many others discussions we approach here at TED on how we regard one another. You hit the nail on the head. Love ourselves. If we can do that, we really have something to offer - in my opinion. Thanks again.
        • May 8 2013: The gratitude is very much requited, R H!
          This discussion, and indeed any other here on TED, is all about learning from each other and building awareness. Change is happening as we speak!
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        R H

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        May 8 2013: Your mouth to God's ears.
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        May 8 2013: Lizanne and R H,
        I agree that if we love ourselves (respect, compassion, empathy, kindness), then we really have something to offer. We cannot give to others, somethiing we do not have in, and for ourselves.

        You ask..."Could there ever be unconditional respect for one another?"

        In my humble perception.....yes! It is a choice, and one thing that helps make that choice, is seperating the person from the behavior. My mom always used to say about my abusive, violent father...."love the man, hate the behavior".

        When we can observe the situation with compassion (view things from another perspective, as you say Lizanne), there is an opportunity to let go of our own fear and insecurity, and see/feel the fear and insecurity in others, which often contributes to behaviors.
        • May 9 2013: Compassion and empathy - extremely valuable traits we all possess and need to 'exercise'!!!

          I learned an important lesson recently - or rather, my children taught me an important lesson recently.

          My daughter's feelings were hurt at school. She cried, because someone laughed at her. It broke my heart, I was about ready to call that other little girl's mother, but realized - this is something she has to experience. I hugged her hard, and let her cry it out.
          Not long after, my son Bram experienced the same thing. Two little boys were purposefully shutting him out at recess, his heart was broken. My daughter saw this, recognized it, and immediately went to comfort him.

          By allowing her to explore this negative emotion, as unpleasant and difficult as it was, she was able to know it, and consequently recognize it in someone else! Empathy was born.
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          R H

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          May 10 2013: Hi Colleen. I'm glad you brought that up - "love the man, hate the behavior." I've seen it referred to a number of times in this stream. I really struggle with it. I find it hard to separate the two. I will try to think of it more deeply. Thnx.
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        May 9 2013: AWWWWW yes! Children can teach us SOOOO much! We need to pay attention to them more often....nice experience:>)
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      May 8 2013: I like this thread. Peace, Love, harmony and Zen. And you guys really mean it. That makes me happy. This is nice.
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      May 10 2013: R H,
      This is a response to your comment, which I could not reply directly to....

      "10 minutes ago: Hi Colleen. I'm glad you brought that up - "love the man, hate the behavior." I've seen it referred to a number of times in this stream. I really struggle with it. I find it hard to separate the two. I will try to think of it more deeply. Thnx."

      Here is an idea if you choose to consider it. We do not know the battles a person is waging in him/herself....we don't always know exactly what causes behaviors.....for example......

      When I volunteered with the dept. of corrections, one of the guys I dealt with was a criminal...he was angry....agressive....tough guy....nobody was EVER going to push him around....that was the behavior he adopted. Why? When looking at his file, I discovered that he had been sexually assaulted by members of his family starting at the age of 2 years old. Can you imagine? Can you put yourself in his shoes? As a teen, he was taken from his biological family (FINALLY!!!) and placed in many foster homes, where he continued to be disruptive, angry and agressive. He hooked up with a bunch of angry, abusive, agressive people, and his life of crime began.

      Another example is a teen who came into the woman's shelter where I volunteered. She was very angry, abusive and violent.......and......pregnant for the 3rd time by her father. She had also been used (tortured) by her parents and their friends for satonic rituals.

      There are a LOT of very wounded people in our world, carrying a LOT of anger and hurt thoughout their lives. It does not justify their behaviors, but it may, if we think about it and genuinely feel it, have compassion and empathy for and with them, it may help seperate the person from the behavior in our minds and hearts?
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        R H

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        May 10 2013: So true. Please respond to discussions/town halls regarding gov't student test scores. You have much to offer.
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      May 11 2013: Thanks R H:>)
      Can you provide a link for the discussion you would like me to respond to? I will check it out and see if there is anything I can contribute.
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      May 7 2013: Hi Kate, thanks for your replying,
      its really true that it grows sickness inside you..Firstly you forgive for yourself..
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    May 13 2013: Lizanne ,how great view of acceptance yourself / your feelings / your emotions! I do remember that..Many times I had thoughts of avoiding emotions and I was being angry with myself when I was realized that I can't control them!:)
    • May 14 2013: It's not easy to embrace emotions, regardless really if they're positive or negative, I feel.
      Sometimes they feel so huge, you can't really grasp that something that big.
      Our strength lies in those emotions.

      Thank you for your kind words. It feels good to know you can relate, Thetisd.
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    May 10 2013: y
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    May 9 2013: Hi guys..(all of you)
    I do agree that the power of gratitude , love and respect are the mainly factors in order to handle many situations and in that case to forgive.. Very enlightening views guys, I am really happy to hear your talks, i feel full of positive energy in here!
    How nice to meet you all!
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    May 9 2013: Yes as long as there is trust
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      May 9 2013: Hi Casey!
      Thanks for your replying
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      May 9 2013: Hi Casey:>)
      Trust on the part of the one forgiving? The one being forgiven? Both?

      Are you saying that to forgive is conditional?
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        May 9 2013: Both, if you are forgiving someone based on a lie then even you forgiving them is a lie
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          May 9 2013: I don't "get" that Casey, unless one wants to build a foundation of lies, which doesn't seem very good for any relationship.

          If someone lied to me, I consider it information about that person, so there would be nothing to blame him/her for. What is provided with a lie, is information regarding how much we can, or cannot trust that person. It is not, in any way a reflection of me, so I'd have nothing to forgive.

          If I chose to continue with a relationship of any kind, I would know in my heart that the person is capable of lying, and my trust of that person may be limited.

          I would not consider my forgiveness of a lie, to be a lie, because I would be honest. Do you think/feel that your general statement may not fit everyone, or every situation?

          We certainly CAN build lie upon lie, and what's the point in doing that to ourselves?
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        May 9 2013: Your forgiveness of a lie would not be a lie, because you wouldn't know you forgave a lie. Only truth can be forgiven. You can forgive someone who told you a lie, but you would need to trust that your not just falling for another lie. If it is another lie then truthfully nothing was forgiven.
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          May 9 2013: Casey,
          You wrote..."if you are forgiving someone based on a lie then even you forgiving them is a lie".

          Now you write..."Your forgiveness of a lie would not be a lie, because you wouldn't know you forgave a lie".

          If I didn't know the lie was a lie, there would be nothing to forgive....nothing even to recognize.....moot point!
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    May 8 2013: Thetisd, The Hellas population is subject to the same loves and hates as all of us. I have forgiven and not forgiven ... in any instance I would never forget. To forget is to not learn a lesson from the event and to grow from the experience.

    I do not forgive or forget Bill Clinton for his affairs and actions that were an insult to all women and the people of the United States and conducted in the Office of the President. Complete and total disrespect in all aspects.

    I will never forgive or forget the actions of Jane "Hanoi" Fonda for her trator actions in providing aid and comfort to a enemy of the the United states during a armed conflict. In other times and in most countries punishable by death.

    I do not forgive or forget Obama for not saluting the American flag or for bowing to kings while officially representing the United States. Neither the people of the United States or the Flag of our country bow to the will or biding of others. In his religion, Islamic, it is a sign of respect and obedance to the ruler. As a US President i showed a loyality to others ... not the US citizens and IMO weakness.

    There are others on a lessor scale. I do not wallow in these events or my dislike for their actions ... We must all have standards by which we measue ourselves and others. I hold people in positions of public trust to higher standards. To abuse that trust is the highest of crime and should not be either forgotten of forgiven.

    I am the hardest on my own and my families actions and those that I invite into our circle.

    If we do not have honor we have nothing.

    I wish you well. Bob.
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      May 9 2013: Hallo Robert , thanks for your replying,
      Of course you cannot forget,
      Το forgive it reflects kindness
      To forget it reflects idiocy, you should not forget in order to learn. Nice to meet you
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      May 13 2013: Yes indeed there are that people in Ted !!! I am very glad for it! Keep walking keep forgive :) . Of course there are intolerant people! Better be tolerant and forgive rather than to become intolerant like them. Be proud of yourself every day..
  • May 7 2013: Thetisd,
    have you seen Joshua Prager's talk, "In Search of the Man Who Broke my Neck"?
    His describes his journey for forgiveness... which he discovered could never be provided by someone else. It taught me a valuable lesson about forgiveness that I could apply to my own life.
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      May 7 2013: Hi Lizanne (again :) ) , thanks for your replying
      I was amazing by the talk! How valuable was it! Thank you very much!
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      May 8 2013: That talk is awesome! What that man lost, and then gained is something truly transcendent. He challenges both my faith and my beliefs in ways that I value the most.
  • May 7 2013: I think forgiveness comes from kindness,high qualitied comprehension of life.By the way I suddenly have another question:what does mean:forgiveness?say:I forgive you to those people once they hurt u or no complain,no hatred...but just ignore them alone?or pretend nothing happened?
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      May 7 2013: Hi edulover thanks for your replying,
      Its sure that forgiveness comes from kindness. I believe that we should love others despite their faults. No we do not/ should not pretend...we learn and we might be able to understand if the other person is trully regret of his mistake...