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Over the years I read suggestions that we should forgive Germany, Poland, Russia, the Catholic Church, the Crusades, Christianity, Islam, Egypt, the Ku Klux Klan, etc.

The only "forgiveness" I ever found in the Sources was forgiveness of an individual, by God or by another individual. I never found any mention of "forgiveness" of a country, an institution, a religion, or any group of people as a whole. Is there such a concept in Judaism?

There are hints of that (such as "Do not despise an Edomite, because he is your brother. Do not despise an Egyptian, because you resided as foreigners in his country." [Deut. 23:7]), but it does not rise to "forgiveness".

  • When you say "I read" do you mean "in Jewish religious sources", because asking "I read in a local newspaper" sounds weak? – Al Berko Oct 10 at 8:27
  • "country, an institution, a religion," are all people, just as Judaism is all about single Rabbis, there's no "institution" or "religion". You can't forgive Judaism also. – Al Berko Oct 10 at 8:31
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    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/… – Silver Oct 10 at 16:56
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    @Jonathan Not to belittle the enormous tragedy that is the Holocaust, but why do you draw the line there? Why do you feel that the Nazis are unforgivable, but the Spaniards are? (For the record, I have relatives who went through the Holocaust, as well as ones who went through the Inquisition.) – DonielF Oct 10 at 19:10
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    @Jonathan You’re dodging my question. I don’t deny how horrid the Nazis were; I’m asking why you feel the Spaniards are forgivable. – DonielF Oct 11 at 17:57

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