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Newsletter Vol. # 9 That's how I see it!

Hello and welcome to Vol. #9. Thanks to you folks who are taking the time to respond-you have some interesting perspectives!

What you'll find in this weeks newsletter: article to Forgive and Forget or Just Forget; several Did You Know pieces; Anger is a form of intimate communication; as if you didn't know already How to start a fight; a Reader Contribution; and Pt.2 of my Trip to Cayman.

Forgive and Forget or Just Forget

"Just let it go!"
     "Don't dwell on the negative"
          "To err is human, to forgive is divine"

I have heard people say this kind of advice a fair amount in my life. They seem to be inferring that before you can move on after being wronged, you have to forgive the person. This believe, in my case, was generally delivered by someone with religious affiliations. It seemed to be that "forgiveness" was a word that was uttered repeatedly to show how strong your faith was and that you would not only feel better when you forgave, but you would be a step closer to Heaven and God.

I believe I can decide to "move on" after being wronged without having to forgive that person! I can decide not to pursue my anger or resentment, like I decide most things in my life-I have free will. I don't have to forgive nor do I have to keep the resentment in the forefront of my brain so as to disturbed my daily life. I can be at peace if I choose to "let it go", I am not a victim to my negative emotions. I don't have to give energy to negative thoughts, nor do I need to "wipe the slate clean" to be at peace. I can forget about things, people, wrongdoings without forgiving. Is there anything wrong with forgiveness? No! Forgiveness can be a wonderful release, it just isn't an absolute prerequisite to "moving on."

I know there are some/many of you will disagree with me and that is certainly okay as long as we don't try to sell our position as the correct one--we're both correct according to our beliefs.

Rev. Karen Toole-Mitchell has another way of looking at this issue of forgiveness.

Our religious beliefs and faith paths have been misused to force forgiveness. Force feeding-shoving something down someone's throat-causes them to gag and vomit and forced forgiveness does the same thing to our psychological and emotional life. It causes us to swallow lies and pain when what we need is the nourishment of truth and healing.

Forced forgiveness is like demanding of a child, "Now say you're sorry!" So they say it, but they don't mean it. It doesn't affect their behaviour. It's just an empty ritual required under duress to act appropriately if they want to be acceptable and belong.

There are a few points I want to be really explicit about in this reflection. One is that forgive and forget do not belong together. In fact the opposite is true. Real forgiveness only comes out of the hard work of remembering.

There are times that we can choose to forget to remember, but if we have been truly hurt, betrayed, abused, then there is not any real possibility of the comfort of just forgetting or letting go. The memory of that pain is a part of who we are, and until we accept those memories they will at some level affect, haunt, dictate and compel us.

Forgiveness cannot be blind. We just can't close our eyes to hurt and injury. Forgiveness cannot be deaf. We cannot just refuse to hear the words of rejection or insult. Forgiveness cannot be numb. We can't refuse to feel pain. Healing only comes when forgiving and forgetting are separated, and when remembering and forgiving are connected.

There is no point in forgiveness if that individual will continue to harm you. There is no point in forgiveness if it is simply so you can feel acceptable or righteous. Even for a short time, it's not worth it unless it genuinely arises out of your free will to move on, and justice is done. There is no point in forgiveness that does not bring about change.

I like what Karen says about this topic.

Again on this topic of forgiveness, I like how William Frank Diedrich talks about this topic in his article, " Forgiveness"

As humans we tend to confuse forgiving with pardoning. To pardon is to let someone off the hook. Forgiveness is to let go completely. It is to live as if the bad stuff never happened. It is to be free of it. Therefore, forgiveness is not something we do for another person. It is something we do for ourselves. Forgiveness is a decision to move on and be free.

Forgiveness is often a process. We allow ourselves to be angry or to feel hurt for a period of time. We let it run its course. At some point we make the decision. We choose freedom. When we choose freedom we begin to choose different thoughts. When we find ourselves caught up in pain, we think about other things. Tell yourself, "I'm done with this and I am moving on." Stand up and walk away. Consciously choose other thoughts. Consciously involve your self in different actions and refocus your mind. This is discipline. All new goals require discipline. Forgiveness needs to be practiced.

Forgiveness is not a "should". Forgiveness is a "want". There are times when I am angry when I don't want to forget. I want to be right. I want the pay off I get from being the person who has been wronged. At some point I realized I am not getting what I really want. I really want peace. I really want to live joyfully and powerfully. I don't want to be a victim.

To choose forgiveness you must live consciously. To live consciously is to practice awareness of your thoughts and emotions, and to intentionally direct them. This requires mental discipline. It requires that you notice when your thoughts are painful and that you consciously decide what to do with them.

Well there you have it, a kind of potpourri on forgiveness. That's how I and a few others think about this topic. What's your take on this topic? Send me an email at

Did you know...

Ever wonder what causes snoring? Well apparently when you fall asleep, all the muscles in your body relax, including the throat muscles that normally prop open your airway. Consequently, your body has to work harder to suck enough air through the now narrower tube, causing the pressure inside to drop, which pulls the floppy walls inward and it makes them vibrate-creating the distinctive snoring sounds.

Did you know...

New Jersey recently passed the nation's toughest ban on sales of junk food at school cafeterias, vending machine, snack bars, and in-school fund-raisers. That means say good-by to any item listings sugar as its main ingredient or containing more than 8 g of fat per serving.


Anger is a normal human feeling. What we do or don't do with that feeling can reveal a character defect, but it is not wrong to feel angry. Denial of anger, blaming, resentment, and manipulating others are character defects or shortcomings that result from not dealing with our anger in a healthy way.

People quite often choose to deal with their anger in inappropriate ways and make strange decision to let their anger out, quite often, on the very people they love the most and who least deserve the anger. I find myself quite often saying to people "you need to choose to talk about your anger and not be angry".

Why then is the person you choose to express your anger to directly most often be a close friend and most likely a loved one? Well, anger as well as happiness, sadness or fear, is a feeling that requires intimacy for its expression. A sensation of vulnerability often lies just beneath our anger, and we usually choose to show our vulnerability only to those we love because they are the ones we could trust. Anger is a distinct form of intimate communication.

Did you know...

That a serving of watermelon or pink grapefruit a day, could reduce the risk for developing prostate cancer by a whopping 82%. As well, eating daily servings of tomatoes, pumpkin, citrus fruits, and spinach lowers the risk of developing the disease.

How to Start a Fight

My wife sat down next to me as I was flipping channels.
She asked, "What's on TV?"
I said, "Dust."
And that's when the fight started.....


When our lawn mower broke and wouldn't run, my wife kept hinting
to me that I should get it fixed. But, somehow I always had
something else to take care of first, the shed, the boat,
making beer.. Always something more important to me. Finally she
thought of a clever way to make her point.

When I arrived home one day, I found her seated in the tall
grass, busily snipping away with a tiny pair of sewing
scissors. I watched silently for a short time and then went into
the house. I was gone only a minute, and when I came out again
I handed her a toothbrush. I said, "When you finish cutting the
grass, you might as well sweep the driveway."

The doctors say I will walk again, but I will always have a limp.

Reader Contribution:

The article on "Dirt" ...this is the best thing you sent me.  It was right on!   You see I grew up eating more dirt than thought possible. The article brings back times from my youth when we had nothing but made the most of it.   Thoughts and imagination are like dirt. You eat it, live in it and then pass it on to your kids. If as a kid you don't eat and play in dirt, or don't have any hard times, you probably will live to regret it. Dirt keeps one alive because it produces life and nourishment. It also forces the body's immune system to get stronger and over come bad time and disease.


Where's part 2 of your airport incident??? I've been waiting all week!!!

In response to Brigitte's request:

Pt 2 Trip to Cayman

As I previously stated it is one day until I go home and I have yet to hold a golf club. I am feeling better, the arm is healing. However, I never did find out how damaged the arm was. I was told that my insurance coverage was invalid and they would not okay an MRI or any treatment. Totally my own fault. I counted 32 days, which is the coverage I paid for, the overnight in Toronto made it 33. My understanding was that it was 32 days out of country but it is when you leave the province that's when the math starts. It's funny, well not really, that I get hurt on the first day of my holiday all the insurance company can look at is the final day of the holiday. The most aggravating part of dealing with the insurance vendor was that they would not even respond to any of my phone calls-" Oh, that's the international travel department-I can't connect you to them but I will have them call you"--never happened and after three phone calls I gave up.

The first two weeks of our holiday was spent focused on the grandkids-pool, ocean, gym for kids; happy/tired/miserable; have a sleep/fight about having sleep; TV/too much TV-- actually I wouldn't trade it for the world. Although I did like it a lot last year when I could escape to the golf course about 2 pm. However, no golf this year! Is there anything sadder than seeing a golfer show up at the golf course, watch everybody warm up, kid around, trade insults and bravado's, and not be able to golf? That was me.

The original plan was for my wife, daughter and grandkids to leave after two weeks and I would stay and golf unchallenged for the next two weeks. However, instead of golf, I wrote articles for the newsletter, read, walked, swam in the ocean, hunted for golf balls (apparently I'm really good at it-found over 100 in my forays into the bush), drank coffee at Paperman's, and spent evenings with our son. Brad and I ate out at some Georgetown's finer restaurants, catching hockey playoffs, particularly the quick exit of our Jets. I lazed around, I needed time to "heal and reflect." I think I really need to work on my "healing and reflecting" skills as sitting around "healing and reflecting" nearly drove me crazy.  (Pt. 3 -soon Brige)

I like it Dan! It's good stuff! Thank you for what you're doing with this! I love your passion and effort!                Thank you Brige!

Vol. #9 in the bag.
Next Sun. June 7, Tony Awards (best of Broadway)
Anything you care to report or comment on?