Jacques Derrida suggests that forgiveness does not have a limited or proper meaning. People cannot agree on the extent beyond which forgiveness can or cannot go. Forgiveness is so vast that it is hard to determine with certainty who and what calls for forgiveness.
The idea of forgiveness asserts itself in the language that people try to adopt in search of forgiveness. The language has a religious heritage called Abrahamic. The language unites Christianity, Judaism and Islam which depicts the cosmopolitan attribute of all people (involving all religions). It is an instance where forgiveness is globalized and resembles a big scene of continued confession (Derrida and Stocker 1). This language is used by all people regardless of class, social and political status if those people have a genuine intention to be forgiven.
Forgiveness refers to one’s memory where they need to look back to the past for self-accusation and eventual repentance.
Life Instances Described by Mary Oliver
The poem brings out an instance of a troubled childhood brought about by bad drinking habits of the child’s father. The father knocks wildly at the door and has an injured which shows that he might have been involved in violent acts.
The child is in a dilemma whether to let him into the house or not. After a period of hesitation, the child decides to overlook the acts of his a father and allow him in to the house. This is a life instance where children have to accept their parents as they are in spite of their shortcoming (Oliver 2).
Personal Description of Sin and Forgiveness
Sin can be approached from a religious or a social perspective. In religion, it can be seen as a violation of the doctrines and laws that have been stated in holy books like the bible and the Quran. Sin is a transgression of what God advocates for. In the social context, sin can be described as a regrettable action, lapse or behavior. It is an offense brought about by what the society stands for.
Forgiveness refers to the act of excusing or pardoning someone for the wrong things that they have done. It involves change of attitude towards that person.
Reason why Asking and Granting Forgiveness is Difficult
People find it hard to ask for forgives because of pride and ego in their personality traits. They often overlook the suffering that the aggrieved party is going through. As a result, they do not find it necessary to ask for the forgiveness of the other party.
Granting forgiveness is difficult due to anger and the extent of the action that caused the grief. When people are hungry, they hold on to the memory of the act that aggrieved them hence they cannot pardon the person who offended them. It is also hard to grant forgiveness in cases where the offender has not asked for it.
How the Catholic Church Understands Human Condition
According to the Rite of Penance, the Catholics church shows that we are perennial sinners before God from the time we are born until adulthood. People’s conscience is guilty and at times people commit sins involuntarily. Conscious people express remorse to God for violating the principles that God advocates for (Keifer and McManus 3).
The human condition requires God’s mercy to purify their nature and conscience from the effects of people’s sin. People ask for God’s mercy because they need to be cleansed and purified from their sinful nature. They act like the prodigal son in the bible who returned to his father after doing wrong to him. Similarly, people return to God by asking for His mercy after violating His commandments.
Derrida, Jacques, and Barry Stocker. Jacques Derrida: Basic Writings. London: Routledge, 2007. Print.
Keifer, Ralph A, and Frederick R. McManus. The Rite of Penance: Commentaries. Washington: Liturgical Conference, 1975. Print.
Oliver, Mary. A Poetry Handbook. San Diego: Harcourt Brace & Co, 1994. Print.