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how far should forgiveness go?

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  • Registered Users Posts: 18,996 ✭✭✭✭gozunda


    Neyite wrote: »
    Indeed. Perfectly understandable he murdered her then, asking those sort of pesky questions. :rolleyes:

    Or...and here's a rather radical idea but hear me out: he could not violently murder his wife for a situation she was not the cause of, and for a situation that thousands of couples in the last decade have faced and have managed to not murder each other over.

    This ^^^

    Nobody can make a person lose it or do something that is against their basic nature. The responsibility lies wholey with the aggressor.

    To strangle someone is a cold violent action that requires considerable force and time. Such behaviour is very different to giving someone a belt of a shovel or pushing them over where the strike their head in a fit of anger imo

    In the recent case the husband strangled his wife to death and killed the children's mother. A particularly unworthy recipient of forgiveness imo.

    And no I dont believe forgiveness such a situation necessarily benefits the forgiver tbh. It is something that is presumed to be somehow the 'right or 'good' thing to do. I remain unconvinced.


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,634 ✭✭✭✭Graces7


    volchitsa wrote: »
    That's a decade later. Not a couple of days or weeks.

    It was immediate.

    https://www.csmonitor.com/2007/1002/p09s02-coop.htmlaite


    I agree that forgiveness is probably the best way of managing to live again after such a violent act has happened in a family, but I don't think it can happen immediately. Even in the case of the violent sibling, as was mentioned above, I think that unless you already wish that person died, IMO the shock and sorrow at their death just takes a certain time to process before you can get to the point of forgiving the killer. You'd think they should have come to you, gone to the police etc. You wouldn't think "Ah well sure what odds", you just wouldn't.

    People do. They really do.

    TL, DR: I don't believe "forgiveness" just days after the violent murder of someone you love is genuine, and I suspect that our Christian culture of forgiving your enemy puts people who are still in shock under pressure to parrot words that are not their genuine feelings.

    That could indeed happen but tends not to. No pressure.A genuine desire to forgive that heals the hurt.

    The refusal to forgive brings more and more hurt and causes rifts and feuds that can go on decades or generations


  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 7,020 Mod ✭✭✭✭Hannibal_Smith


    Graces7 wrote: »
    That could indeed happen but tends not to. No pressure.A genuine desire to forgive that heals the hurt.

    The refusal to forgive brings more and more hurt and causes rifts and feuds that can go on decades or generations

    I don't agree with this. When it comes to forgiveness it's about readiness to forgive. This depends on the wrong. A small wrong may lead to a swift enough forgiveness but a darker wrong may mean you are never ready to forgive. There are some wrongs, like murder, that would make it very hard. Pointing the finger at someone and saying you need to get over it is an overload.


  • Registered Users Posts: 17,797 ✭✭✭✭hatrickpatrick


    true about not knowing the full details of the case - the amount of comments left on about it though , some people left shocking comments saying the father should rot in hell, and murdering bastard and should be hanged among other abusive comments... without hearing the full details of the case.

    He's a man accused of doing something to a woman, what do you expect? We're living in an age in which innocent until proven guilty doesn't apply anymore in the court of public opinion. If a man is accused of any sort of domestic violence, he's guilty. If a woman is accused, the man involved clearly must have done something to push her over the edge.

    After the Ulster trial and its social media aftermath, I'm at the point of just ignoring social media commentary on issues like this and hoping that society regains its belief in fair and blind justice at some point in the future. We're f*cked if we don't. As far as I'm concerned, this man is an innocent man who did not commit the crime of which he is accused, until and unless a jury finds him guilty of said crime. If the victim's relatives believe that as well, more power to them.

    Now, if he gets convicted, then he's a murdering scumbag who should indeed rot in jail without sympathy. But he is not either of those things right now, he is an innocent man who happens to stand accused of a criminal offence.


  • Registered Users Posts: 11,794 ✭✭✭✭Andy From Sligo


    He's a man accused of doing something to a woman, what do you expect? We're living in an age in which innocent until proven guilty doesn't apply anymore in the court of public opinion. If a man is accused of any sort of domestic violence, he's guilty. If a woman is accused, the man involved clearly must have done something to push her over the edge.

    After the Ulster trial and its social media aftermath, I'm at the point of just ignoring social media commentary on issues like this and hoping that society regains its belief in fair and blind justice at some point in the future. We're f*cked if we don't. As far as I'm concerned, this man is an innocent man who did not commit the crime of which he is accused, until and unless a jury finds him guilty of said crime. If the victim's relatives believe that as well, more power to them.

    Now, if he gets convicted, then he's a murdering scumbag who should indeed rot in jail without sympathy. But he is not either of those things right now, he is an innocent man who happens to stand accused of a criminal offence.

    agree to that, and the fact that people have hung drawn and quartered him even before knowing all the full facts. I don't really think people these days can separate "Charged with... " and "Convicted of ..." these days any more


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  • Registered Users Posts: 33,747 ✭✭✭✭RobertKK


    Everyone is different. Some people can hold a grudge for years/decades/a lifetime. I don't think that is healthy for the mind or body.
    Others forgive as hate, a grudge or whatever is an emotional weight to carry around and I know my attitude is/or how my brain works is the following - if something happens that can't be unchanged one has to move on and rationalise the situation.
    I don't know in a case of murder how I would be - I am unable to do hate, dislike yes but everyone does dislike, and most people have someone who dislikes them...I like to think I would forgive quickly while wanting justice. I think maybe I would rationalise the situation with they couldn't be right in the head to do such a thing.
    Maybe forgiveness as a way to move on from that person, I do think a person has a hold over you if they are affecting you emotionally and that can be a good emotion like love and a hold we all want, but then it can be the bad emotions of hate or other negative things and we all need to find a way to move on from that. Negative feelings are such a weight if one can't move on from them.
    This is why some people forgive quickly in really dark situations in my opinion, they want to move on from that person, it does say 'you don't have a hold over me'.


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,634 ✭✭✭✭Graces7


    RobertKK wrote: »
    Everyone is different. Some people can hold a grudge for years/decades/a lifetime. I don't think that is healthy for the mind or body.
    Others forgive as hate, a grudge or whatever is an emotional weight to carry around and I know my attitude is/or how my brain works is the following - if something happens that can't be unchanged one has to move on and rationalise the situation.
    I don't know in a case of murder how I would be - I am unable to do hate, dislike yes but everyone does dislike, and most people have someone who dislikes them...I like to think I would forgive quickly while wanting justice. I think maybe I would rationalise the situation with they couldn't be right in the head to do such a thing.
    Maybe forgiveness as a way to move on from that person, I do think a person has a hold over you if they are affecting you emotionally and that can be a good emotion like love and a hold we all want, but then it can be the bad emotions of hate or other negative things and we all need to find a way to move on from that. Negative feelings are such a weight if one can't move on from them.
    This is why some people forgive quickly in really dark situations in my opinion, they want to move on from that person, it does say 'you don't have a hold over me'.

    Wise words, Robert.
    It took me a long while at first. When I had been all but destroyed by someone. I prayed for weeks for the grace to forgive and it finally came when I suddenly realised that that person was hurting . And scared.
    After that i would say that if i was walking on a bridge with someone and they pushed me over the edge, I could forgive them while i was recovering in hospital but i would never ever again cross a bridge with them.
    The trust is another thing altogether, but as you say, forgiving frees us. It did me in dramatic ways,
    It totally fazed my enemy too! But that is written too. Do good to those who despitefully use you.. she was let off the hook in very real terms


  • Posts: 21,679 ✭✭✭✭ [Deleted User]


    I used to think forgiveness brought freedom from the pain. Now I believe each to their own. It can be extremely damaging to suggest forgiveness to a person who has been abused or truamatised in some way. Why should they forgive? I don't and it doesn't cause me any bitterness or thoughts of revenge. It is simply that I do not forgive.


  • Registered Users Posts: 11,794 ✭✭✭✭Andy From Sligo


    a person (not all, maybe it doesnt matter to some, especially if they have no conscience ) who has done wrong might want forgiveness (for them to rest and be at peace) - so why give them what they want ? ... if they have done something wrong to your family or loved ones and took someones life ... but regret it hugely afterwards , they might be looking for your forgiveness to make them feel better. But as I say why make them feel better - let them regret every bloody thing they have done. they have made their bed , let them sleep in it . They have done the crime, now its time to do the time . (sorry to use analogies)

    Now saying that, that is for some things like premeditated murder. if its accidental murder or manslaughter or something like that and its eating them up then maybe I could get my head around, a victim or victims family, forgiving a person ... in time maybe


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,286 ✭✭✭volchitsa


    Graces7 wrote: »
    That could indeed happen but tends not to. No pressure.A genuine desire to forgive that heals the hurt.

    The refusal to forgive brings more and more hurt and causes rifts and feuds that can go on decades or generations

    Well I don't really know (happily for me, I've never had to forgive anything so terrible) but I suspect that it's like grief : people who are stuck at a certain stage of grief do need to let go in order to move on with their lives, but all the same you can't just tell people to move on after a couple of days.

    With grief I think it's accepted now that there is a cycle, and you can't skip the different bits to get to the end. I imagine forgiveness can only really come after the person has first come to terms with the event, so even later than "mere" grief I think.

    What I mean is that it's not just a question of willpower, and that expecting someone to be able to do so, by teaching them that their religion requires them to forgive in order to be a good person probably doesn't help them really reach that stage, and may even make it harder for them by making them feel worse because they haven't managed to do something that at that stage would be superhuman.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 7,286 ✭✭✭volchitsa


    I used to think forgiveness brought freedom from the pain. Now I believe each to their own. It can be extremely damaging to suggest forgiveness to a person who has been abused or truamatised in some way. Why should they forgive? I don't and it doesn't cause me any bitterness or thoughts of revenge. It is simply that I do not forgive.

    I think this is related to my thoughts on the question. The worst thing (I think) would be for the person who has been harmed or who has lost a loved one to be put under pressure to forgive the guilty person.

    Forgiveness is probably the best way to move on from something terrible, but it's not something that is due, it has to be something that will make the victim themselves feel better. And I suspect some things are just too terrible for that to ever happen, so the person has to find some othe way of living with what happened. And I think that can happen too. As you say, each to their own.


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,634 ✭✭✭✭Graces7


    volchitsa wrote: »
    Well I don't really know (happily for me, I've never had to forgive anything so terrible) but I suspect that it's like grief : people who are stuck at a certain stage of grief do need to let go in order to move on with their lives, but all the same you can't just tell people to move on after a couple of days.

    With grief I think it's accepted now that there is a cycle, and you can't skip the different bits to get to the end. I imagine forgiveness can only really come after the person has first come to terms with the event, so even later than "mere" grief I think.

    What I mean is that it's not just a question of willpower, and that expecting someone to be able to do so, by teaching them that their religion requires them to forgive in order to be a good person probably doesn't help them really reach that stage, and may even make it harder for them by making them feel worse because they haven't managed to do something that at that stage would be superhuman.


    That was not my experience or that of many I talked with about this. Yes it was an effort, but why is that a bad thing? I knew I was wrong not to forgive, for forgiveness is at the heart of Christ. Sought and given freely,

    What had been done was wrong;yet letting it affect me was also wrong and without forgiving ?

    And no we do not feel worse if we do not forgive! Faith is not like that, thankfully! And no it is not superhuman. We seek forgiveness when we do wrong so we give forgiveness when we are wronged. It is a growing.

    I have only realised reading this that since then and now, not focussing in the wrongs done is far easier and peace that equals forgiving comes in faster. Bearing no grudges while making sure any damage is sorted.


  • Registered Users Posts: 11,794 ✭✭✭✭Andy From Sligo


    is religion playing such a big part in this though - ie having it drummed into you (maybe from an early age, especially if a church goer from an early age) to forgive people no matter what hideous thing they have done?

    I mean if you are constantly being taught/preached to, to forgive - then really you are not forgiving of your own free will ... you are actually forgiving someone because this is what you have learnt and been told what you should do, arent you? - how do you know you are forgiving someone without influence of your faith or how you was brought up (practicing religion) ?

    sorry i am not a catholic, so I dont know how the catholic church teaches about forgiveness - but what does the church/priest say will happen to you if you do not forgive someone? , do they say as a Catholic you must forgive your fellow man? or do they advise you forgive someone for their sins (murder being one of them) so you can move on?


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,188 ✭✭✭Malayalam


    Very very sad case. The pictures of them together with their children look very sweet. I cried reading about her funeral, it's just tragic.

    We don't know why the family are being so forgiving, but there are reasons why they might be. The couple are young, perhaps her parents have known him since he was a boy and vica versa, perhaps they have loved him as a son. Genuinely, deeply loved him. Their boy now that he loved their girl. Perhaps he has had some kind of psychotic break that we know nothing of, the family asked for him to be put on suicide watch. Sometimes a grave mental illness manifests suddenly in a person, under great duress, perhaps this has happened here and the family know he was not in his right mind. A moment of dreadful madness. In the case of them loving him as a son (which I suspect) the concern for him post this terrible act may be more akin to the love a parent has for a child who has had a psychotic breakdown and killed a sibling. The shock and pain of losing one violently, but coupled with the shock and concern for the other who has disintegrated.

    I don't know. :(


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,286 ✭✭✭volchitsa


    I posted on here before that I'll always love my son no matter he does in his life.

    Somebody posted back even if he became a serial killer.


    Obviously a person who does not have a child.

    Us parents have a thing called unconditional love.

    My boy could grow up to be the next Charles Manson, but I will neve abandon him, no matter what.

    (People might disagree with this post, but the point is, it's a long way from killing someone because they've done something terrible, and nobody suggested killing their son in a fit of rage would be a natural reaction. That's because people know that you don't kill someone you love.)
    Malayalam wrote: »
    Very very sad case. The pictures of them together with their children look very sweet. I cried reading about her funeral, it's just tragic.

    We don't know why the family are being so forgiving, but there are reasons why they might be. The couple are young, perhaps her parents have known him since he was a boy and vica versa, perhaps they have loved him as a son. Genuinely, deeply loved him. Their boy now that he loved their girl.
    I don't believe you can kill someone you love, only someone you think you own.
    We've been here before in Ireland, only recently.

    Perhaps he has had some kind of psychotic break that we know nothing of, the family asked for him to be put on suicide watch. Sometimes a grave mental illness manifests suddenly in a person, under great duress, perhaps this has happened here and the family know he was not in his right mind. A moment of dreadful madness. In the case of them loving him as a son (which I suspect) the concern for him post this terrible act may be more akin to the love a parent has for a child who has had a psychotic breakdown and killed a sibling. The shock and pain of losing one violently, but coupled with the shock and concern for the other who has disintegrated.

    I don't know. :(
    Hmm. I'm sure it can happen, but I don't think it's the majority of cases where a man kills his partner or children. I think it's more often a warped interpretation of love that we should be very careful about condoning.

    IMO.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,188 ✭✭✭Malayalam


    volchitsa wrote: »
    (People might disagree with this post, but the point is, it's a long way from killing someone because they've done something terrible, and nobody suggested killing their son in a fit of rage would be a natural reaction. That's because people know that you don't kill someone you love.)


    I don't believe you can kill someone you love, only someone you think you own.
    We've been here before in Ireland, only recently.



    Hmm. I'm sure it can happen, but I don't think it's the majority of cases where a man kills his partner or children. I think it's more often a warped interpretation of love that we should be very careful about condoning.

    IMO.

    I'm not at all saying it was love. I am speculating it was psychosis. None of us know what's going on there yet, and I was only speculating why the family might feel compassion for him.


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,286 ✭✭✭volchitsa


    Malayalam wrote: »
    I'm not at all saying it was love. I am speculating it was psychosis. None of us know what's going on there yet, and I was only speculating why the family might feel compassion for him.

    Of course we don't, but speculating on psychosis when statistically that is far less likely than him being an evil murderer means that some people cling to that narrative even when it turns out not to be true.

    It's exactly what happened with the murderer in Cavan (I don't even want to say his name) and that is how the family were pushed, in the name of "forgiveness" to allow something they later regretted terribly.

    Since the Polish have the same Catholic thing about forgiveness as the Irish, it's likely that - and IMO it's not a good thing to assume otherwise, even if that seems more agreeable.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,188 ✭✭✭Malayalam


    volchitsa wrote: »
    Of course we don't, but speculating on psychosis when statistically that is far less likely than him being an evil murderer means that some people cling to that narrative even when it turns out not to be true.

    It's exactly what happened with the murder in Cavan (I don't even want to say his name) and that is how the family were pushed, in the name of "forgiveness" to allow something they later regretted terribly.

    Since the Polish have the same Catholic thing about forgiveness as the Irish, it's likely that - and IMO it's not a good thing to assume otherwise, even if that seems more agreeable.

    MY first instinct in the Cavan case was that Hawe was a manipulative evil person, operating consciously to control his family, and planning the deaths in detail.

    It may be so in this case, I/we don't know. My instinct says it is not. That's all. Just offering an opinion, but done now.


  • Posts: 21,679 ✭✭✭✭ [Deleted User]


    I think viewing horrendous acts as being the result of a psychosis can help our reasoning for such a crime. If we view a person as not being of their right mind it makes it easier to understand, more palatable almost than if they are simply sane and rational but capable of such badness.

    Now I know there is the argument that to commit certain crimes you can't be possibly be sane but I disagree with that. The existence of insanity in others can make ourselves feel a little more comfortable.


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,286 ✭✭✭volchitsa


    I think viewing horrendous acts as being the result of a psychosis can help our reasoning for such a crime. If we view a person as not being of their right mind it makes it easier to understand, more palatable almost than if they are simply sane and rational but capable of such badness.

    Now I know there is the argument that to commit certain crimes you can't be possibly be sane but I disagree with that. The existence of insanity in others can make ourselves feel a little more comfortable.

    Yes, I think that is a real danger, that it's comforting to suppose that the person was basically good and something unpredictable happened, but I worry that that allows other men to do the same thing. And indeed women, for that matter, though it's less frequent.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 11,794 ✭✭✭✭Andy From Sligo


    oh god I hate speculating, because not all the facts have come out but I have read in some situations that people murder the one they love because "if they cant have them, they make sure no-one else can have them!" and they had recently split up I read.

    It might have been psychosis , or a mental illness or something like that . he might have got voices in his head telling him to strangle her - if these voices are strong and bullying / eating away at you it keeps on until you 'carry out the task'

    on the other hand it could be totally true that he found the wife strangled and indeed panicked and moved the body to another area because he really believed the guards would automatically done it - so then the family might really believe this is the true facts and maybe thats why they was there in court supporting him and the sister of the victim putting her arms around him and the family saying he was forgiven .... but then again what would they be forgiving him for? would they be forgiving him for moving the body? or maybe he wasnt a good husband when they were together .... or maybe they believed he did murder her but are forgiving him for that?

    on this subject the poor wee kids left behind without a father or a mother, if its just the case that someone else did strangle his wife but the father moved the body, would he still go to prison for a sentence? - if it turns out to be manslaughter again would he get a long sentence?

    - if he was a good father and he didnt indeed murder their mum then, although there sounds like a good support of family around that will look after the children , he (if he didnt murder his wife / doesnt go to prison) will at least be around for his children


  • Posts: 21,679 ✭✭✭✭ [Deleted User]


    I'm very interested in the darker side of humans and believe that behind closed doors often tells a different story to the external one. A person's true nature can be revealed in lots of different ways. Apparently during that poor woman's funeral the priest asked for prayers to be said for her husband. That's strange to me and reminds me a little of the initial talk surrounding the murder of Clodagh Hawe and her boys.
    Edited to add that Natalia's husband has not been tried so it's unfair of me to draw any comparisons between him and the Hawe case.


  • Posts: 26,052 ✭✭✭✭ [Deleted User]


    I know forgiveness is a kindness primarily to the forgiver if it eases the burden of hate or fury for them, but maybe we should recognize that some things are, or should be, unforgivable. Child abuse comes to mind.

    Like others here I thought of the Cavan case, where pressure was brought on the victims family to publicly be seen to be forgiving of their daughters and grandsons killer to the extent he was buried with them. Forgiveness is for the family to give or withhold and I don't think one is more valuable than the other, it's what they can live with at the time and what feels right for them. Nobody should be steering them in any direction.

    The capacity to forgive is a wonderful thing, I'm not sure I'd be capable of giving it if we take this story at just face value but maybe details will emerge that changes that.


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