Tara Brach and Forgiveness

One of the overhangs of my Catholic upbringing is my propensity to forgive people.

Jesus is famously about forgiveness. (Unless you’re gay. In which case, according to many Christian doctrines, you’re going to burn in a lake of fire. And people wonder why I don’t ascribe to Catholic doctrine any more…)

Someone recently said that it was possible for people to push her too far; she would be in a place where forgiveness was not possible.

I’ve always felt that forgiveness is possible, and it should be possible. But outside of the teachings of Jesus, I didn’t have a hook.

In this lecture by Tara Brach, she outlines the reasons for forgiveness. Often, the person we first need to forgive is ourselves. Then outward to other people. Releasing blame and allowing ourselves to forgive another also allows the healing to begin for ourselves.

One important line that I took away: forgiveness of an action does not mean that we condone the action. We recognise that someone may be suffering, and in turn has directed suffering towards ourselves.

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