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Imagine you’re trapped, confined, in a small space. It is frightening to step out of it, but when you leave, there is release. You left behind the security of the cage, but there is so much more room to breathe.

In the same way as you can be trapped in a cage, you can be imprisoned by anger or hurt. To some, real forgiveness feels impossible… “Clay rises in the heart” is the Talmud’s piquant expression for the pain someone feels at times, in situations of emotional stress, or the stubbornness we feel in the face of pleas we do not wish to grant. Who is not at times taken by surprise to discover that seemingly long forgotten slights are still able to awaken that clay? No one ever forgets where he buried the hatchet, wrote the humorist Kin Hubbard. So what does real forgiveness feel like? Describe it as best you know or imagine it and give examples of what you mean.

–David Wolpe

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