Tyler VanderWeele: Is Forgiveness a Public Health Issue?

If forgiveness is strongly related to health, and being wronged is a common experience, and interventions, even do-it-yourself workbook interventions, are available and effective, then one might make the case that forgiveness is a public health issue. From a societal perspective, the public health impact of an exposure or intervention is often assessed as a function of (1) how common the exposure or experience is, and (2) how large its effects are. Because being wronged is common, and be- cause the effects of forgiveness on health are substantial, forgiveness should perhaps be viewed as a phenomenon that is not only of moral, theological, and relational significance, but of public health importance as well.


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