The Sunflower: On the Possibilities and Limits of Forgiveness

The Sunflower: On the Possibilities and Limits of Forgiveness

by

Simon Wiesenthal

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The Sunflower: On the Possibilities and Limits of Forgiveness: Terence Prittie Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Prittie tries to understand Karl’s motives in asking for forgiveness, admitting that it is only natural when one is in pain and fears impending death to ask for forgiveness for the sins one has committed.
Prittie’s arguments center on Karl’s impending death, countering those who believe that he should not even ask for forgiveness. Any person in pain deserves compassion.
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However, Prittie argues that if Simon were to forgive Karl, it would only be “mock-forgiveness,” purely because Karl is dying. Karl should not have been asking forgiveness from Simon, but instead from God. In walking out of the room, Simon did the most decent thing possible.
Prittie agrees with Simon, and extends his argument to say that although someone who is suffering might deserve compassion, this does not necessarily mean that they deserve forgiveness.
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