philo and shadow,
Don't get me wrong, I don't think forgiveness is being nice to our abusers. And regardless of whether or not we choose to forgive (and I'm not at all trying to say that we must forgive) we can, and should, try to hold them accountable. And trust me, I still have anger. If anything I would say that maybe I need to get more in touch with my anger.
shadow, of course you are free to do anything you choose to do, as am I. I would never try to tell anyone that I know what they must do to heal. I can share with everyone my own story and my steps towards healing, but some of what works for me, might not work for you.
I would say that in order to cancel a debt, there must be some kind of payment made. If you forgive the friend who broke your lamp, either you pay for it yourself, or you choose to live without it. We all hope to get to the same end of peace and happiness, but I think it's important to acknowledge that a price must be paid in order to achieve it.
"I am not a mechanism, an assembly of various sections.
And it is not because the mechanism is working wrongly, that I am ill.
I am ill because of wounds to the soul, to the deep emotional self...."
Healing D.H. Lawrence