I read a very interesting article on the topic of forgiveness. Lately, i've been researching a lot for school since I'm getting started on thesis work. Without getting into much detail, most of the articles i read have to do with coping with sexual abuse and religion.
This one article talked about the different perceptions of people when it came to forgiveness, many of which were religiously influenced concepts. Basically, forgiveness is considered to be a healing factor and an important step to recovery depending on the meaning it has to the individual who is forgiving. For some, the actual idea of letting go is synonymous with forgiving while for some forgiving is more about growing through sufferance, accepting what has been and allowing the other person to be free of guilt.
It's an interesting idea that can be applied to more than one situation. It happens to be difficult to read about sexual abuse and forgiving, but then again, it depends why you forgive.
Then I started wondering, what is the Jewish take on forgiveness? Don't we forgive for the sake of the other person? In light of the sexual abuse research, it's a big deal and a unbelievable hard task. I can only begin to understand the grandeur of people who are able to forgive.
But then I also wonder, what's in for you in forgiving? According to Jewish law in philosophy, what is your obligation in forgiving and why is it so?