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BLOG: Failing to Draw a Line Under Vengeance

In 2003, I was introduced to a man who had committed a double murder. He had recently been released from prison after serving a life sentence and was trying to readjust to a world very different from the one he’d left 15 years earlier. It was the first time I’d knowingly met someone who had… more

BLOG: Desmond Tutu to Consider: Is Violence Ever Justified?

Last October, The Forgiveness Project – a UK-based charity which explores forgiveness and conflict resolution through the stories of real people – held a controversial event at The House of Commons in collaboration with the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Conflict Issues. On the day after the 25th anniversary of the Brighton bombing, Patrick Magee, the man responsible for planting… more

BLOG: What Redemption For a Child Killer?

In November 1993, Gitta Sereny, the distinguished biographer of Albert Speer, wrote in a British Sunday newspaper that the killers of two-year old Jamie Bulger, Jon Venables and Robert Thompson, were still children and therefore had a chance of one day being rehabilitated back into society. Comparing their prospects to the successful rehabilitation of child killer Mary Bell – the… more

BLOG: Sexual Abuse…What Place for Forgiveness?

A remarkable woman came into my office last year. As director of The Forgiveness Project — a UK-based organization which explores forgiveness through real-life stories — I have met a lot of remarkable people, but Susan’s story touched me more than most. (“Susan” is not the woman’s real name, but is being used in this post for the… more

BLOG: The Easy Path to Islamic Extremism

In No Enemy to Conquer – a fascinating examination of forgiveness in an unforgiving world – the author, Michael Henderson, refers to the malicious rumors of 2007 which alleged that presidential candidate Senator Barack Obama had once attended a radical Muslim school in Indonesia. Henderson’s deep disquiet over this incident is because the War on Terror has… more

BLOG: Can Forgiveness Save Tiger Woods?

How do you save a relationship after countless betrayals? Can trust ever return? Should you forgive when forgiveness may simply encourage further bad behaviour? These may well be some of the many questions that Elin Nordegren, the long-suffering wife of Tiger Woods, is contemplating having discovered her husband’s multiple infidelities, and watched his squeaky clean… more

BLOG: The Banality of Evil

From the mass murderers of Auschwitz, to the Islamic extremists who flew their planes into the World Trade Center, the widespread belief is that those who do grave harm to others to fulfill their ideological purpose are fundamentally different from us. We use a special vocabulary for them: “beasts”, “monsters”, “evil.” Yet the hypothesis which… more

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