01-23-2008, 12:09 PM
Phoo, you got in before I could say it.
But, yeah, it's all relative. What did they do? Were they remorseful? What were the circumstances? Are they ill? Did they attempt to reform? Is it a first offense? One of multiple?
All these questions have a bearing on whether someone can be forgiven. I think 'redemption' in the religious sense is a bit more sketchy, as only that person, and maybe not even they, can tell if they are 'redeemed' or not.
I think forgiveness is a sort of 'scale of grey' rather than a black-white proposition. There are degrees of forgiveness, but with forgiveness at any level usually comes at least a bit of distrust. Even if someone is forgiven, it's unlikely that their transgression will be forgotten.
And, ultimately, no forgiveness is really any good unless it comes from ones' self. If I forgive you, but you do not forgive yourself, it's not really worth much.