04 Aug 2013

Forgive Others as You Would Want to Be Forgiven

Religious 6 Comments

Here’s a quick one for you: Think through all the really obnoxious things you’ve done in your past. If you’re like me, most of them were because you were trying to impress people and/or compensate for some insecurity you had. Looking at your behavior objectively, you now could say, “Yes, I agree that that guy [girl] looks like a real jerk, but I know what I was worried about at the time, and that came off way worse than I meant it. If people who saw that behavior could know the full story, they would have a much better opinion of me.”

OK, now that you’ve finished that exercise, think about all the people you can’t stand because they act like such jerks.

6 Responses to “Forgive Others as You Would Want to Be Forgiven”

  1. Major_Freedom says:


    • Z says:

      LOL. That’s pretty funny. I tend to agree with you in that I’m no fan of god. But I don’t really like to join in the jeering and chest thumping not because I like everything that religion has to say, but because though I think some of the worst people in the world are religious people, the best people I know are also religious people as well. Secular humanists for the most part are stuck in the middle, there are very few who reach anywhere near the level of the best religious people. That’s just my opinion, but just to explain why I don’t like to join in the jeering with most of the other agnostics/atheists.

      • Major_Freedom says:

        Sorry, I meant to say my arsehole neighbor Frank, not God.

        But then I remembered that Frank “works in mysterious ways”, and that he is far more complex than my feeble brain can comprehend.

        So after some trials and tribulations, I finally succeeded in convincing myself, but not really, that even though to my sensibilities, and to most other people’s sensibilities, Frank is an arsehole, he nevertheless “has a plan” he set for himself, to suit his pleasure, and so at some point in the indefinite future, maybe if I end up chained to a toilet in his basement or something, “it will all finally make sense.”

        Frank is good. Frank is benevolent. Frank is just writing a story, and we’re the actors in his play. Do not question what you cannot comprehend.

  2. Matt M. (Dude Where's My Freedom) says:

    I think the people I can’t stand because they act like such jerks are people who act like jerks pretty much all the time. Typically, I’ve explained to them exactly what it is they’re doing that makes them seem like a jerk, but they refuse to modify their behavior at all.

    I stand ready to forgive momentary indiscretions, but a pattern of behavior is an entirely different matter…

  3. JimBob says:

    Yeah, and if someone had the nut’s to correct you on the spot you would not “have been” a jerk for so long. Never forgive a jerk, fix them.

  4. Keshav Srinivasan says:

    This reminds me of a quote by C.S. Lewis, justifying war from a Christian perspective:

    “You are told to love your neighbour as yourself. How do you love yourself? When I look into my own mind, I find that I do not love myself by thinking myself a dear old chap or having affectionate feelings. I do not think that I love myself because I am particularly good, but just because I am myself and quite apart from my character. I might detest something which I have done. Nevertheless, I do not cease to love myself. In other words, that definite distinction that Christians make between hating sin and loving the sinner is one that you have been making in your own case since you were born. You dislike what you have done, but you don’t cease to love yourself. You may even think that you ought to he hanged. You may even think that you ought to go to the Police and own up and be hanged. Love is not affectionate feeling, but a steady wish for the loved person’s ultimate good as far as it can be obtained. It seems to me, therefore, that when the worst comes to the worst, if you cannot restrain a man by any method except by trying to kill him, then a Christian must do that. That is my answer. But I may be wrong. It is very difficult to answer, of course. “

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