خاطرات خشم و افکار انتقام: ارتباط بین بخشش و نشخوار خشم
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Personality and Individual Differences, Volume 39, Issue 2, July 2005, Pages 253–262
This study examined the relationship between a two-dimensional model of forgiveness and Sukhodolsky et al. (2001) 4-factor model of anger rumination among 200 university students. Anger memories were found to be the most important aspects in forgiving oneself, and dealing with revenge thoughts were found to be crucial when exploring issues around forgiving another person. The present findings suggest the importance of cognitive aspects as portrayed by Sukhodolsky et al. (2001) model of anger rumination to explore in greater depth the cognitive processes involved in forgiveness of self and others. Angry memories and thoughts of revenge: The relationship between forgiveness and anger rumination.
In recent years there has been a plethora of research examining the psychological correlates of forgiveness and its context in understanding inter-personal conflict. The main body of research has been concerned with forgiveness as it pertains to relationships with others, where the respondents are responding to questions regarding their thoughts, feelings and emotions towards a person who has transgressed against them. Rye et al. (2001) note there exist as many measures of forgiveness of others as definitions (Berry, Parrott, O’Connor, & Wade, 2001; Hargrave & Sells, 1997; McCullough et al., 1998; Subkoviak et al., 1995; Wade, 1990). The research on forgiveness of others has proved useful in distinguishing between different correlates of forgiveness and providing insights into the different psychological processes that might be involved in forgiveness (McCullough, Worthington, & Rachal, 1997; McCullough et al., 1998; Worthington, 1998). One under-used, but very useful theoretical and empirical distinction made within the psychology of forgiveness is the distinction between forgiveness of others and forgiveness of self (Mauger et al., 1992; Yamhure-Thompson & Snyder, 2003). There are a few studies examining self forgiveness. Maltby, Macaskill, and Day (2001) report a failure to forgive oneself sharing significant positive relationships with neuroticism, depression and anxiety. This view that failure to forgive oneself has detrimental effects on mental health is reported in other studies (Mauger et al., 1992). There are currently three dispositional measures of forgiveness that include forgiveness of self as well as forgiveness of others (Mauger et al., 1992; Tangney, Fee, Reinsmith, Boone, & Lee, 1999; Yamhure-Thompson & Snyder, 2003) and these have not been used extensively within any research context. There is growing evidence to suggest that forgiveness is linked with a number of aspects of well being (Mauger et al., 1992; Salman, 2002; Subkoviak et al., 1995). Empirical research on forgiveness and mental health has largely concentrated on negative outcomes such as failure to forgive to be related to indicators of poor mental health such as depression and anxiety. (Karremans, Van Lange, Ouwerkerk, & Kluwer, 2003; Maltby et al., 2001). However there is evidence this association is more pronounced in relationships of strong rather than weak commitment and that it is the quality of the relationship before the transgression that is important. (Karremans et al., 2003). With regards to forgiveness within relationships there is a growing awareness of the usefulness of forgiveness within relationships (Ripley & Worthington, 2002) and in the clinical arena as it is often regarded as a therapeutic tool by counselors and psychotherapists (Murrey, 2002). While it is accepted that situational and relational characteristics are likely to affect the ease with which forgiveness occurs (Enright and Coyle, 1998, Worthington, 1998 and Worthington et al., 2000b), well-being as reflected in a number of personality and individual differences dimensions also appear to be influential in determining individual willingness to forgive (Emmons, 2000). Berry et al. (2001) have suggested that one important way of conceptualizing the personality and individual difference research associated with forgiveness is to consider them in terms of whether they foster or inhibit forgiveness. Accordingly, while certain variables such as empathy and agreeableness are thought to foster forgiveness (Ashton et al., 1998, Berry et al., 2001, John, 1990 and Macaskill et al., 2002), there are an array of variables such as neuroticism, anger, anxiety, depression, hostility and resentment that are thought to act as inhibitory variables (Davenport, 1991, Enright et al., 1992, Kaplan, 1992, Maltby et al., 2001, Williams and Williams, 1993 and Worthington et al., 2000a).Within these latter set of findings, two constructs emerge that are thought to be crucial in predicting levels of forgiveness; anger and rumination. First is anger. Anger is often conceptualized as one of the main emotional barriers to forgiveness (Enright and Coyle, 1998 and Worthington, 1998). Fitzgibbons (1986) defines anger as “a strong feeling of displeasure and antagonism aroused by a sense of injury or wrong” (p. 629). It has its origins in early childhood relationships with loved ones and later develops to include relationships with others, especially those we wish to trust. The experience of anger leads to a desire for revenge that does not go away until it is recognized and released (Fitzgibbons, 1986). Empirical studies have supported the association between individual acts of forgiveness and the reduction of anger (Huang and Enright, 2000 and Weiner et al., 1991). Berry et al. (2001) provided empirical support for the relationship between dispositional forgivingness and trait anger. Second is rumination. Rumination involves a repetitious focusing on the negative things in one’s life. Collins and Bell (1997) have reported that rumination can foster aggression in response to perceived insults and results in the psychological distress experienced after interpersonal stresses being sustained for longer periods (Greenberg, 1995). Rumination has also been shown to be negatively associated with lack of forgiveness (McCullough, Bellah, Kilpatrick, & Johnson, 2001). Research suggests that people who are more forgiving of others ruminate less (Berry et al., 2001 and Yamhure-Thompson and Snyder, 2003). McCullough et al. (1998) report that teaching individuals to ruminate less results in them becoming more forgiving. Furthermore, within the anger and rumination literature, there has been research that has sought to examine the constructs of anger and rumination together. Sukhodolsky, Golub, and Cromwell (2001) suggest that anger rumination is a distinct variable that can be measured independently from aggression, hostility and rumination. They define anger rumination “as unintentional and recurrent cognitive processes that emerge during and continue after an episode of anger experience” (p. 690). They propose a four factor model of anger rumination to cover the different cognitive facets of anger rumination which are described as being the attention to current anger experience, the tendency to recall previous anger episodes, and the tendency to think about one’s anger experience. The four factors proposed are anger afterthoughts, angry memories, fantasies about revenge, and understanding of causes. Angry after thoughts involve the person maintaining thoughts about and possibly re-enacting the angry episode in their mind. Fantasies about revenge involve the respondent dreaming or fantasizing about how to retaliate against their transgressor. It could even be fantasizing about revenge of a violent nature. Angry memories involve the individual constantly dwelling on the injustices that they have experienced. Finally the sub-scale of understanding causes is concerned with people who dwell on the reasons they were treated badly and try to analyze why the things that happened did so. Sukhodolsky et al. suggest that such a model would further aid researchers understand the cognitive mechanisms involved in anger rumination. Anger and rumination have been prominent variables in examining the relationship between forgiveness and emotional barriers to forgiveness, yet have always been examined as separate variables in forgiveness research (Berry et al., 2001, Huang and Enright, 2000, McCullough et al., 1998, Weiner et al., 1991 and Yamhure-Thompson and Snyder, 2003). However, exploring the concept of anger rumination may further our understanding of emotional barriers to forgiveness by uniquely integrating these two dominant concepts within anger rumination. In terms of specific hypotheses, it is suggested that there will be a significant negative association between anger rumination and both forgiveness of self and forgiveness of others dimensions, as individuals failing to forgive either themselves or an other are equally likely to maintain angry ruminations towards either themselves or the other person over a particular transgression. No specific prediction can be made for which dimensions of anger rumination are related to forgiveness of self or others. Therefore, this part of the study is best seen as exploratory providing researchers and practitioners information on which anger rumination dimensions best predict forgiveness of self and forgiveness of others. The aim of the study was to examine the relationship between forgiveness of self and forgiveness of others and the Sukhodolsky et al. (2001) model of anger rumination to explore which dimensions of anger rumination best predict scores in forgiveness of self and others.