On Forgiveness In Simon Wiesenthal's 'The Sunflower'

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As one grows from infant to adult an even elderly ages, we experience many events in life. One only grows from mistakes that are inevitable to happen. Like the Yin Yang theory, for instance, shadow cannot exist without light. Therefor forgiveness comes into play, it is define as the action or process of forgiving or being forgiven. In The Sunflower by Simon Wiesenthal the questions is asked by Wiesenthal, what would you do? If a dying Nazi soldier ask for your forgiveness? Forgiveness unfortunately can be influence by religious belief, psychological, and political point of view. One is always capable of asking or giving forgiveness to another, whether it is granted or not, the answer it often influenced. Religion has been a part of life since…show more content…
Psychologically it can also be influence to answer to such question without realizing it. Jean Amery states in her letter, “ Psychologically, forgiving or not-forgiving in this specific case is nothing more than a question of temperament of feeling.” (106) If one was near the bedside of a dying SS soldier with, “ head completely bandaged with openings only for mount, nose, and ears.” (25) One can find it easier to forgive, since it he/she was obviously suffering in that specific situation. Opposed to a man asking for forgiveness and is as healthy as a horse. For example, if a man or woman was begging for a confession, one may or may not care to give them the opportunity to do so. Now is the man or woman was to be visually in pain with blood everywhere, one could feel sympathy immediately, and feel bad for the person. Relating to the situation affects a response dramatically, it becomes personal and rationalization is granted easier. Feelings cannot be controlled sometimes, the mind can easily be persuaded by a simple picture, as we all know, an image, picture says a thousand…show more content…
If one forgives another person the effects affect different people simultaneously. It affects the one asking for it and it affects the people around you politically. Jean Amery explains, “ Politically, I do not was to hear anything of forgiveness! I believe you that, who have devoted your life to investigation the political realm of Nazi crimes, will understand my position”(108). The law of course justifies the Nazi Holocaust as rightfully wrong, with that said it requires a due process for the Nazi members to adhere for forgiveness from the law. Unfortunate like Amery discusses, “ that too many criminals are spared by the letter of the law..”(108). One is innocent until proven guilty, but is one really innocent? If the law clears a Nazi member from all charges, can he automatically be forgiven? Even if Wiesenthal forgave the dying SS man, how would his friends back at the camp, Arthur and Josek view Wisenthal if he had forgiven a man that caused so much harm? Surely he must have had that thought in his minds when he was asking for forgiveness. The appearance one portrays in front of the people around you can be as important to as the political right thing to do. Some may disagree, and state that forgiveness comes naturally for an individual. That everyone either forgives someone or does not, by a simple yes or no. However when a person ask for forgiveness, does one not visually see the person, judge their demeanor,
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