Kernbergian Psychodynamics and Religious Aspects of the Forgiveness Process

Volume
Volume 25
Issue
Spring 1997
Title
Kernbergian Psychodynamics and Religious Aspects of the Forgiveness Process
Abstract

The concept of forgiveness is defined and placed in an object relations framework of Otto Kernberg and of John Gartner. The latter presents an interpretation involving the overcoming of splitting which is a kind of proto-forgiveness applicable for treating borderline patients. Given this context, a model of five stages in the forgiveness process is outlined. These stages are adapted from Linn and Linn (1978) and from Kernberg (1992). It is proposed that the crucial last stage requires more than self-acceptance. Specifically, recovery from genuine harm done to others or the self (real guilt) requires repentance and forgiveness, neither of which can be supplied by psychotherapy. Positive clinical signs of genuine forgiveness are briefly described, as are ways in which forgiveness is often put in the service of pathology, such as false forgiveness. Clinical procedures to facilitate forgiveness are noted.

Authors
Dr. P.C. Vitz and Dr. P. Mango
Pages
72 - 80
Price
Add to Cart $5.00