Evidence Supporting the Emotional Replacement Hypothesis
Let me begin to answer the question posed in this chapter with the bad news. There has been very little direct experimental evidence that can suggest how forgiveness takes place. We can say for sure that when people completely forgive, their thoughts, emotions, motivations, and sometimes behavior will change. Almost every existing study that directly investigated forgiveness has shown that these changes are correlated with forgiveness. The causal ordering of changes has not been investigated, nor has the essence of forgiveness been experimentally determined.