Why is it so hard to practice forgiveness? My colleague from Canada, Anna Bowness-Park, explores this topic in the July 7, 2014 issue of The Vancouver Sun. Her powerful article highlights a new documentary that brings the villains and victims of war and crime together in face-to-face meetings. The results provide unforgettable lessons for the viewer and a touching tutorial in forgiveness. Here in Indiana, the Commission for Continuing Legal Education maintains the statewide registry of court-approved mediators who provide help for those who confront injustice and hope to forgive. I know you’ll enjoy Anna’s article. Click on the link at the end of the excerpt below and be sure to watch the video. Here’s Anna:
Have you looked at the news lately? Revenge killings in the Middle East, mobster revenge murders here in BC, honour killings, random school shootings both here and in the USA – all stemming from anger and a desire for payback. Humanity is struggling with the issue of revenge, and the results are costly for us all – especially for our mental, spiritual and physical health.
All religions teach the importance of peace with one another. For example, Jesus taught his followers to “love one another.” So why is it so difficult to live up to such teachings?
Trying to gain a sense of peace with nothing but the human mind is tough. The painful memories seem to adhere to thought like glue. They claim to define us and to prevent us from moving forwards. We feel stuck in anger and pain, no matter how much we would like to let go of it; and if not dealt with, it can overwhelm our sense of peace and our health. But there is a way forward. It comes when we shift from a purely human and “me”-focused approach to a stance that seeks to understand and to bless others.
This summer, a global movement called the Shift Network is holding online events called “The Sumer of Peace – Transforming Conflict in your Heart, Your Relationships and the World.” One of the events they highlight is a new documentary, “Beyond Right and Wrong.”