Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

Patrick H
Gormley


FORGIVING WHAT WAS DONE TO OTHERS IS THE REAL ISSUE AND IS IMPOSSIBLE

Forgiveness is marketed as all the virtues coming together.  Thus the person who forgives is good and the one who does not is bad.  This is about the kind of person they are not about what they feel or don't feel.

You are not the only person wronged in the world.  What about the pain out there as big as the universe?

Do you just forgive wrongs done to you?  And others?  If you love your neighbour as yourself and have to see the other as another you then you have to see the attack on another as an attack on you.  Without that there will be no chance of rapport.

For believers, evil is not just about somebody being hurt.  Its about creating something that is to be feared and overcome and seen as vile and condemned.  We hate the vice in a person who harms nobody.  We hate the person though we usually won't confess it.

Is it really up to todayís religionists and families to forgive what was done to their predecessors and ancestors? It canít be done for you are not the one hurt Ė they are! You will encounter something that will trigger resentment on their behalf. You have to. You can decide to move on. But you cannot decide to forgive for you do not know the perpetrators and you cannot understand exactly how your loved ones suffered. All you know is that it was terrible and possibly worse than you can imagine. To understand all is said to be to forgive all. It is certainly true that you cannot understand what they went through and why. Even you suffer as much as one of them that is one of them and it is nothing like understanding what it was for them and understanding the massive suffering

What about the notion that God never forgives sins but forgives sinners? What on earth can such an idea mean? How important is it? Is it a fundamental question?

Believers think sins being forgiving is a bit distant but God forgiving them is more personal. Its more direct and intimate.  So they drop love the sinner as if the sin is separate from them when it suits themselves.  So it is a fundamental question for believers and they shout yes.

Forgiving could be condoning but being in denial that you are condoning. The risk of that is strong if you feel pressured by your Church or God or scripture to forgive perhaps on the pain of God refusing to forgive you if you wonít forgive his child. If forgiving is not condoning, then it is a way of dealing with an evil that has been done. It is hoping that trying to move on will lead to the evil not being repeated. Godís forgiveness then needs to be real. God needs to be real. If forgiveness is faked then there is no forgiveness. But what is there then? As forgiveness from a fake or unforgiving God is not dealing with the evil or sin, the best word to describe what is going on is condoning. To not deal with a sin is to virtually say the harm is okay. Its not a neutral thing Ė its pro-evil. Fake divine forgiveness is a tree. The tree is bad and the fruit will be worse so there will be more damage done in the long term over it. For the believer the only important thing about the sin against you is that God forgives it. The risk is that the believer only forgives for the sake of God for the real reason is that she or he suspects there is no God to deal with the sin.

If God has to conform to a moral standard, then there is no way he can be totally certain that he should forgive xís sin. X may be repentant and God may know that but is that enough?

Is Godís forgiveness a miracle that takes away your responsibility for the bad thing you did? Or is it just God changing his attitude towards it?

Forgiveable means that nothing is so bad that you canít move on. Evil by definition is that which is so bad that it ought never to be forgotten. Jewish writers have said that God will not forgive unless the victim forgives first.

When somebody hurts another person, you condone it, you forgive it which means you refuse to harbour anger against them but condemn what they did and consign it to the past, or you approve. So you have only three ways to respond.

People may say they donít think of forgiving what was done to others. They say they worry about forgiving those who hurt them and those who hurt their loved ones. That is in fact a form of egotism Ė not egoism for egoism does not say you should be unfeeling - and suggests that what matters is suffering that is in some way about you. If you were giving any attention to what others suffer and how its often worse than what you suffer then you will have to face one of your three choices.