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This room is for general discussion that doesn't specifically fit into one of the other CatholicMatch rooms. Topics should not be overly serious as this is to be more of a "cafe setting."

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For a long time I would hear people say the phrase, "forgive and forget." I have always had trouble with this, because or another phrase I have learned over time as well, "those who forget the past are destined to repeat it." Some say the 2nd phrase may seem bitter, but I would think that it would help in taking precautions so that one doesn't get hurt on a repeated basis. Is it wrong to think this way, or is it right to put up the metaphorical walls to protect one's self from repeated things happening? And, isn't it right to protect one's self from this?
Nov 4th 2013 new
This notion of "forgive and forget" is a protestant notion. Because protestants do not have recourse to the Sacrament of Penance, there is no institutionalized way for them to "get right" with one another. This being the case, their only recourse for some semblance of peace in life is to "forgive and forget" the wrongs done to them by others.

It is entirely in line with human nature to remember the injustices that others have perpetrated upon one's self. In this way we protect ourselves from the hurt or harm in the wake of these others who do not repent of their disordered behaviors or have not proven their repentance.

Take for example a man who has murdered your sister, brother and one of your cousins. Are you going to forget that he did this evil, disordered action multiple times merely because he said he's sorry? Is that even charitable to forget these actions and possibly tempt him to this evil again?

This notion of "forgive and forget" is plainly silly, not to mention dangerous...and on top of that, I find that most people who spout this silliness tend to be the worst offenders of their fellow man.
Nov 4th 2013 new
I agree that repentance is key. Someone who hurts me in some way but sincerely apologizes and truly strives not to repeat the offense does deserve to have me treat him as though the original offense did not happen. However, I will, most likely, remember the event until time erases the memory. That memory does not necessarily need to influence my behavior toward the other person, but natural self-protective caution will probably be there for a while.

If the person, though apologetic, repeats the offense... well, I get stuck here a bit. We're admonished to forgive 70 times 7 times; we are to forgive others as we want God to forgive us. But if my spouse, say, continually lies to me... Hmm. It would be foolish to just forgive and keep taking it, so to speak. But it would definitely call for some active work as a couple on the undesired behavior.

There are cases where we need to forgive a person for something, but then forget about it by no longer having that person present in our lives. We can wish them well, pray for their conversion, but not allow their harmful behavior to bring us down any longer.
Nov 4th 2013 new
Tony, I would echo what Chelsea writes.

In all honesty, anyone with half a brain will REMEMBER, including protestants who say "forgive & forget". In a manner of speaking, the brain has a "tape recorder", memory... long and short... especially women who can recite things verbatim fifteen years after the fact! laughing A woman, forget? Not a chance :)

People really do not "forget" literally; but nonetheless try to numb their brains for that fleeting semblance of present peace.

Atheists are clear to "remember", as are Jews, who have a different response to their assessment of injustice.

Forgiveness towards others is necessary, especially in grave matters, because we are commanded to do so, but rest assured in that Christ will judge justly in our behalf; hopefully most benevolently. So, when we are dishing out unjustly; causing intentional harm to either self, others, or God, it is essential to confess and beg forgiveness from God. It helps, as necessary also, to do reparation and penance for our personal transgressions.

All we need to do is think of finding ourselves on the opposite side of God and it should suffice to explain why we should forgive.
Nov 4th 2013 new
Very good points Lina!
Nov 4th 2013 new
Chelsea, you have some good points here. But, one that I would respectfully question is the notion that "forgive and forget" is exclusively a Protestant notion. I say this because there are many Catholics I know that have said this to me in the past. I have even heard Priests and Deacons preach about this in their Sunday homilies. It's been talked about that this notion may come from the Bible, where Jesus has preached to "turn the other cheek." Nonetheless, you have some good points in what you have said.

Also, Lina and John, you both have some interesting incite that I had not taken into account for this. Thanks.

But, this makes me wonder if the Almighty and Ever Merciful will take this into account when it's our individual times to go before him..,about forgiving and remembering for the purposes of not getting hurt again.
Nov 4th 2013 new
(quote) Tony-705734 said: Chelsea, you have some good points here. But, one that I would respectfully question is the notion that "forgive and forget" is exclusively a Protestant notion. I say this because there are many Catholics I know that have said this to me in the past. I have even heard Priests and Deacons preach about this in their Sunday homilies. It's been talked about that this notion may come from the Bible, where Jesus has preached to "turn the other cheek." Nonetheless, you have some good points in what you have said.

Also, Lina and John, you both have some interesting incite that I had not taken into account for this. Thanks.

But, this makes me wonder if the Almighty and Ever Merciful will take this into account when it's our individual times to go before him..,about forgiving and remembering for the purposes of not getting hurt again.
I cannot help but reply as there are so many reason to remove oneself [forgive but remove
ourselves for safety and sanity].........This is likely not what you refer too but violence is not ok.


Please explain better for me....................



Nov 4th 2013 new
Susan, I'll try. My intent had nothing to do with violence. It had to do with dealing indiscretions done on to one's self by others, and if it was fair to remember those indiscretions after forgiving the person that did them. Indiscretions in this case could mean someone who hurt you emotionally, someone stole something from you, cheated you out of something, talked bad about you, or broke your heart. Essentially, does one keep a safe zone up around them, or do they let it down and start all over again?

I had not taken into account violent acts when I started this topic. But, you do bring up an powerful thought here, about those who have committed violent acts towards you, or towards loved ones as well now that I think about it.
Nov 4th 2013 new
(quote) Tony-705734 said:  But, one that I would respectfully question is the notion that "forgive and forget" is exclusively a Protestant notion. I say this because there are many Catholics I know that have said this to me in the past. I have even heard Priests and Deacons preach about this in their Sunday homilies. It's been talked about that this notion may come from the Bible, where Jesus has preached to "turn the other cheek."

I also second the notion on it's origin. I do hear it a lot and today is the first time I hear it is an exclusive Protestant notion. I too do forgive. I can't say that I will ever forget. It would be more like Lina already mentioned. However, I do have some difficulty when the harm was deliberate and intentional...
Nov 4th 2013 new
One the humor side of me...

"I don't believe in holding grudges. I do, however, remember facts. Forever."

laughing laughing laughing
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