"Interpersonal Forgiveness: The Role of Cognitive Appraisal, Empathy & Humility"
Peter Hill, Ph.D., in the Department of Psychology at Grove City College, at the
time of funding, and now at Biola University, Rosemead School of Psychology, will
investigate an individual's right to decide to forgive or not to forgive (or seek
forgiveness). The study consists of using a survey, interviews, and workshops to help
evaluate the measures of stress reduction. The objectives include understanding how
different people have differing perceptions of wrongdoing, experiencing empathy towards
the other person, and being more able to request and offer forgiveness.
"Psychosocial Effects of Forgiveness Training with Adults"
Carl Thoresen, Ph.D., professor of psychology at Stanford University, will study methods of helping people forgive in order to reduce hostility and anger toward their offenders. Thoresen believes that people who replace anger, hostility, and hatred with forgiveness will have better cardiovascular health and fewer long-term health problems. This project uses assessments, interviews, and group sessions. The study will incorporate men and women as a means to study if gender differences exist in forgiveness and if so, to clarify those differences. Thoresens project was directed by Dr. Fred Luskin.
"Embodied Forgiveness: Empirical Studies of Cognitive Emotional
& Physical Dimensions of Forgiveness-related Responses"
Charlotte Witvliet, Ph.D., professor of psychology at Hope
College in Holland, MI, proposes to study how feeling scared, feeling
like getting even, feeling sorry for someone else, and forgiveness
relate to one's health. This is a laboratory study involving 30
males and 30 females in an emotional imagery test. The other study
will involve 100 males and female veterans who are seeking help.
They will complete a clinic evaluation.
"Study of the Brain Functional Correlates of Forgiveness in
Humans by Using Positron Emission Tomography (PET)"
Pietro Pietrini, M.D., Ph.D., at the time of application, was in the Cognitive Neuroscience Section at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, and is now at the University of Pisa (Italy), will test his hypothesis that forgiveness allows one to overcome a situation that would otherwise be a major source of stress, both mentally and neurobiologically. Forgiveness is thought to dramatically change the individual's biological homeostatic equilibrium. He will assess the neurobiological response associated with forgiveness and unforgivingness.
"Basic Psychological Process Underlying Forgiveness & Health:
An HIV Paradigm"
Michael McCullough, Ph.D., a researcher at the University of Miami, having begun his funded work at Southern Methodist University, will determine whether there is a correlation between interpersonal forgiving and physical health. His study will investigate forgiveness in the context of ongoing relationships in college students. These studies also suggest that there are at least two mechanisms responsible for the capacity to forgive. They include disclosing negative thoughts and forgiveness.
"Forgiveness & Biopsychosocial Well-being in Persons Living with HIV/AIDS"
Lydia Temoshok, Ph.D., at the Institute of Human Virology at the University of Maryland in Baltimore, will study whether mental, spiritual, and social factors affect the health and in-vivo immunological functions. She will also see whether there is forgiveness given to people with HIV, by society and by themselves, and how that affects them taking their medicine regularly, having a good way of handling their disease, and taking care of themselves.