Fetzer Facebook Fans on the Connection between Love and Forgiveness

We love being able to directly connect and engage with you online, share inspiration, projects and news, including the everyday challenges of keeping an open heart. While social media is a tricky “place” to try to build community, sometimes it captures a collective wisdom that helps us deepen our understanding and practice of love and forgiveness.

Recently we posted this query on Facebook: In a word (or a few), what's the connection between love and forgiveness? The 39 responses so touched us, we wanted to hold attention on them a little longer than social media typically allows.

We thought about editing them down for space, but taken together, in their original form, they are beautiful and powerful. If you didn’t have a chance to participate or needed time to mull the query over, we welcome your reply to the question or to the responses themselves. If you're not following us on Facebook, join in the conversation at facebook.com/fetzerinstitute.

Thanks to all of you who share your experiences and your wisdom cultivating love and forgiveness. You teach us so much!

·       Natalie Johnson in loving we forgive...in forgiving, we love

·       Paula Soto compassion: to suffer with

·       Vivian McGuire Harris optimism

·       Kellen Manley At times, Everything

·       Deborah Jackson A drive to love motivates the work of forgiveness. Love is the motivator and the payoff. Love for self, the "offender" and the broader community who is affected by the residue of tension until it is neutralized

·       Gelli Ma you can't have one without the other

·       K Mack Enzian Love is the soil; forgiveness, the tree. And love is not sentimental. Without it forgiveness is ungrounded and puts passers-by at risk of being crushed. Without forgiveness, though, love will occasionally blow a lot of wounding dust in your face. In the Southwest, the haboobs are legendary

·       Joy Sell Insanity

·       Lynn Fena love pushes forgiveness up the hill, then they roll down laughing in each other's arms

·       Brenden Dix Surrender into humble acceptance

·       Nathan Moore Ultimately, forgiveness is an act of self-love

·       Kendra Stetser Rowe Love just is. Forgiveness is a habit

·       Dianne Gray Compassion

·       Heather Nicole Acceptance

·       Paige Cargioli Forgiveness is active love

·       Jennifer Peck Wisdom

·       Rebecca Suzan Osterberg space

·       Dave Butler Intelligence

·       Mary Margaret Cannon forgiveness is the heart of love -- it's atomic particle, even

·       Kathy Roach peace and grace

·       Dawn Vollink Empathy

·       Dee O'Donnell Mystery

·       Sheila McGuire Lynn Fena, that was beautiful! Truly perfect!

·       Tiffany Brook Newton Peace

·       Penny Rankin It takes love to forgive...and once embraced love grows and grows

·       The Fetzer Institute Wow! Thank you all for sharing such thoughtful responses

·       Teri Perry If you truly love someone you will forgive them and it is ONLY love that can forgive

·       Justin St Vincent Compassion is the bridge between Love and Forgiveness

·       Kim Connolly Love means caring enough to understand what happened so it can be avoided in the future. That is the best foundation for forgiveness

·       Annabelle Berrios Self love

·       Monica Anderson Serenity

·       Carol Fahy self

·       Western Iowa's Feral Cat Program wholeness

·       Claire McMillen Mays God

·       Dawn Wiley commitment

·       Scott Stefanski The more love, the less need for forgiveness

·       Purposeful Acts of Kindness Like the heads and tails of a coin . . . two aspects of the same thing

·       Odonata Coaching & Consulting "Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into friend." - Martin Luther King, Jr

·       Peace (through) Leadership Forgiveness is the TEST of love

·       The International Charter for Human Values in Healthcare compassion and understanding