The Pragmatics of Forgiveness or the Divine Purpose of Forgiveness

In their article, “For Whom Do We Forgive?  A Functional Analysis of Forgiveness,” authors Peter Strelan, Ian McKee, Dragana Calic, Lauren Cook, and Lisa Shaw probe the pragmatic or functional use of forgiveness, looking not so much at what forgiveness is, but rather at what forgiveness does and the valuable changes it brings about.  Their basic argument is “forgiveness theorizing and research can be advanced by thinking about forgiveness on the basis of its functional properties:  What does forgiveness achieve for people?” Obviously, forgiveness brings about changes, which in their … [Read more...]

Religiosity, Christianity, and Forgiveness

In psychological literature, religion and spirituality are usually contrasted as the institutional and subjective aspects of individuals’ search for the sacred. Religion, in particular, is often defined by a particular constellation of feelings, thoughts, experiences, and behaviors that accompany this sacred search and that are validated and supported by an identifiable group of people. So a Christian who feels gratitude towards God, thinks about Scripture, experiences God’s nearness, and goes to Church in ways that are shared with others in that Christians group could be called religious. One … [Read more...]