Thought for the Day – 24 October – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
“Month of the Holy Rosary”
“As We Also Forgive Our Debtors”
“Some people hold that it is base and low-spirited to forgive easily, whereas, a keen sense of honour demands revenge.
Nothing could be more false.
The true greatness of human nature lies in its ability to conquer the lower instincts.
“It is far more difficult,” wrote a famous historian of antiquity, “to overcome oneself, than to defeat one’s enemy in battle” (Valerius Maximus, Memorable Deeds and Sayings, Bk IV, 2).
Forgiveness requires a victory over pride and sensitivity towards others and is, therefore, a high act of human value.
When we forgive, we do not abase ourselves before the man who has offended us but, we raise ourselves above him by our nobility and generosity.
By behaving in this manner, we display out self-control, inspire sentiments of respect and benevolence and, may even bring about a reconciliation and a renewal of friendship.
So, let us make a few good resolutions:
(1) Remembering how Jesus prayed for His executioners, let us always be generous in pardoning others;
(2) Let us do good to those who have offended us, adopting the motto of St Paul: “Be not overcome by evil but, overcome evil with good” (Rom 12:21);
(3) When the injury which we have received, disturbs us greatly and causes us to lose our peace of mind, let us remain silent and procrastinate – “Delay is the best cure for anger,” wrote Seneca, who also, very truly observed, that whenever we have been angry with others, we end by being angry with ourselves!”
Antonio Cardinal Bacci