One of the hardest things for a person to do is to forgive themselves or forgive another family member, especially a spouse of getting into an Arizona IRS problem. This situation can become even more difficult when the spouse who gets in trouble keeps it a secret from the “innocent spouse” until the IRS comes knocking on the door. If you have a serious Mesa AZ IRS problem you need a competent professional who can help navigate you towards the right solution and then be successful at arriving at that “port.” If you sincerely want to work with the right person, let me recommend that you contact Scott Allen E.A. immediately at 480-926-9300 and schedule a free consultation. Scott will be able to put your mind at ease during your first meeting with him. And if you are married, it is imperative that both spouses attend that first meeting if at all possible. If you meet with Scott you will be glad you read this blog.
Fyodor Dostoevsky and Forgiveness
One of the hardest of life’s Horrors is to watch a loved one suffer especially when they are young or innocent of any wrong doing. I would like to share with you a portion of what I consider the greatest book by the greatest author or all time—The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky. Dostoevsky addresses this problem in his book.
There is a discussion about the problem of evil between Alyosha Karamazov, who is a Christian monk, and his skeptical brother, Ivan Karamazov. Ivan says he believes the whole story about God but cannot accept it. This is a quote from Dostoevsky’s novel:
It’s not that I don’t accept God, you must understand; it’s the world created by Him I don’t and cannot accept. Let me make it plain. I believe, like a child that suffering will be healed and made up for, that all the humiliating absurdity of human contradictions will vanish like a pitiful mirage,…that in the world’s finale, at the moment of eternal harmony, something so precious will come to pass that it will suffice for all hearts, for the comforting of all resentments, for the atonement of all the crimes of humanity, of all the blood they’ve shed; that it will make it not only possible to forgive but to justify all that has happened with men—but though all that may come to pass, I don’t accept it. I won’t accept it. That’s what’s at the root of me, Alyosha; that’s my creed.
In this extraordinary statement, Ivan cites his atheistic rejection of God—not that there is no God, but the meaning of God in view of all the horrors of the human condition. The root of Ivan’s problem is the horror of innocent human suffering, especially of young children. Ivan can’t reconcile the problem of evil that comes from the malicious use of freedom by other human beings and hold on to his belief in God’s providence. No amount of divine forgiveness, no divine salvation, no divine reconciliation can make up for the fact that innocent human beings have suffered—that is what is unacceptable to Ivan.
In explaining why he cannot accept it, Ivan makes up a story and presents it as if it actually happened. The story is of the aristocratic owner of a great estate living in luxury and ruling over two thousand serfs that labor for him. He is a retired general convinced that he has earned absolute power over the lives of his subjects. He has a kennel of hundreds of dogs and nearly a hundred dog boys, all in uniform. One day a serf boy, a little child of eight, throws a stone while playing and hurts a paw of the general’s favored dog. The general is told which boy threw a stone that hurt the dog’s paw. “Take him,” the general says. Here are Dostoevsky’s words:
He was taken, taken from his mother and kept shut up all night. Early that morning the general comes out on horseback, the hounds, his dependants, dog boys and huntsmen, all mounted around him in full hunting parade. The servants are summoned for their edification and in front of them all stands the mother of the child. The child is brought from the lock-up. It is a gloomy, cold, foggy autumn day. A capital day for hunting. The general orders the child to be undressed. The child is stripped naked. He shivers, numb with terror, not daring to cry. “Make him run,” commands the general. “Run! Run!” shout the dog boys. “At him!” yells the general and he sets the whole pack of hounds on the child. The hounds catch him and tear him to pieces before his mother’s eyes.
A bit later in the passage Ivan says:
I want to see with my own eyes the ‘deer lie down with the lion,’ and the victim rise up and embrace his murderer. I want to be there when suddenly everyone understands what it’s all been for. All the religions of the world are built on this longing and I’m a believer. But then there are the children…I renounce the higher harmony altogether. It’s not worth the tears of that one tortured child who beat itself on the breast with its little fist and prayed in its stinking outhouse, with its unexpiated tears to ‘dear, kind God!’ It’s not worth it…
After reading these passages, I felt that Dostoevsky had painted himself in a corner and would not be able to address the horror of what happened to this little boy. Dostoevsky was a devout Christian who prided himself on being able to give better reasons for being an atheist than the atheists. He faced all of the hard questions of life. No Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da here. And let’s be honest. Haven’t you had similar concerns as well with the world around us?
In Book 6, Dostoevsky presents the story of Father Zossima, the Russian monk who preaches the hidden meaning of love as revealed in the atonement of Jesus; a love that reveals itself in its highest form–forgiveness. Not only to his crucifiers but to every person who has ever lived on the earth.
Two episodes from Father Zossima’s life reveal how he came to be the living example of this truth of forgiveness. Father Zossima tells the story of the death of his brother when Zossima was still a child. His brother who died while he was a young man teaches us that only the spirit of forgiveness can save humanity from despair in the face of evil and reconcile us with God. This spirit of universal and unconditional forgiveness flows from acceptance of the truth that, “we are all responsible to all others and for all.” Here is the story of the Zossima’s brother’s conversion.
“Don’t cry, mother,” he would answer, “life is paradise, and we are all in paradise, but we won’t see it; if we would, we should have heaven on earth the next day.”…
Mother shook her head as she listened. “My darling, it’s your illness that makes you talk like that.”
“Mother darling,” he would say, “there must be servant and master, but if so I will be the servant of my servants, the same as they are to me. And another thing, mother, every one of us has sinned against all men, and I more than any.”
Mother positively smiled at that and smiled through her tears.
“Why, how could you have sinned against all men, more than all? Robbers and murderers have done that, but what sin have you committed yet, that you hold yourself more guilty than all?”
“Mother, little heart of mine… my joy, believe me, everyone is really responsible to all men for all men and for everything. I don’t know how to explain it to you, but I feel it is so, painfully even. And how is it we went on then living, getting angry and not knowing?”
Father Zossima’s story of his own conversion, after the conversion and death of his brother illustrates the experience of liberation that follows from the recognition and acknowledgment of one’s need for forgiveness. I want to retell that story for you in its full detail.
Zossima’s own conversion begins with a challenge to a duel over a conflict with another man over a woman. He has agreed to the duel and goes home that night to await the duel the next morning. Here is the story from this point.
And then something happened that in very truth was the turning-point of my life. In the evening, returning home in a savage and brutal humor, I flew into a rage with my orderly Afansy, and gave him two blows in the face with all my might, so that it was covered with blood. …And, believe me, though it’s forty years ago, I recall it now with shame and pain. I went to bed and slept for about three hours; when I woke up the day was breaking. I got up…looked out upon the garden; I saw the sun rising; it was warm and beautiful, the birds were singing.
“What’s the meaning of it?” I thought. I feel in my heart as it were something vile and shameful…And all at once I knew what it was: it was because I had beaten Afansy the evening before! It all rose before my mind, it all was…repeated over again; he stood before me and I was beating him straight on the face and he was holding his arms stiffly down, his head erect, his eyes fixed upon me as though on parade. He staggered at every blow and did not even dare to raise his hands to protect himself. That is what a man has been brought to, and that was a man beating a fellow creature! What a crime!… I hid my face in my hands, fell on my bed and broke into a storm of tears. And then I remembered my brother Markel and what he said on his death bed to his servants: “My dear ones, why do you wait on me, why do you love me, am I worth your waiting on me?”
“Yes, am I worth it?” flashed through my mind. “After all, what am I worth, that another man, a fellow creature, made in the likeness and image of God, should serve me?” For the first time in my life this question forced itself upon me. He had said, “Mother, my little heart, in truth we are each responsible to all for all, it’s only that men don’t know this. If they knew it, the world would be a paradise at once.”
“God, can that too be false?” I thought as I wept. “In truth, perhaps, I am more that all others responsible for all, a greater sinner than all men in the world.”
Perhaps that is why when Jesus was asked how many times we should be willing to forgive others he said, “I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, until seventy times seven.” As Dostoevsky puts it—Jesus was responsible, “to all others for all others,” and that is what He expects from us if we are to become like Him and are to find meaning in our lives. Having a forgiving heart does not protect us from having trials in life, but it does help us to endure them when they occur.
I will close with this thought—forgive yourself if you have a Gilbert AZ IRS problem. Spouses forgive your spouse that created an Arizona IRS problem for you to deal with, even if you were innocent of knowing what was going on.
I promise you that you will be thankful that you chose Scott Allen E.A to be your IRS resolution professional. Call Scott today at 480-926-9300 for your free consultation. You will be glad you did and your mind will be put at ease.
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