Forgiveness is Really Strange

Valerie Kaur


with Marina Cantacuzino and Masi Noor

Date: August, Wednesday 10, 9 am PDT, Marina Cantacuzino (UK) and Masi Noor (Afghanistan)

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Cost: Suggested donation $10 US.
Should this be beyond your reach, we’re happy to offer it to you free.




This book on forgiveness won't bully you, but it will make you think. And it might just change your life for ever. I loved it. Author: Richard Holloway, author, broadcaster and former Bishop of Edinburgh

I strongly believe in the power of forgiveness to transform lives and this beautiful book opens up the subject in a creative, imaginative and highly original way. Author: Francesca Martinez, comedian, writer and activist

If the last thing you would ever want to do is to forgive those who hurt you most, then read this book. Author: Lemn Sissay, author and broadcaster

Just open the first page of Forgiveness is Really Strange. You will be drawn instantly into all the knotty issues of this vital subject, in a totally magnetic way. How? Because a psychologist from Keele University and the person who pioneered the Forgiveness Project got together with a brilliant graphic artist, so there are very few words. What you get is an unsentimental, evidence-based approach to a subject that can otherwise seem wishy-washy at times. Very complex and challenging ideas are conveyed through amazing life examples and simple, powerful illustrations. Give it to everyone you know, and the world will be happier place. Author: Dr Scilla Elworthy, founder of the Oxford Research Group and Peace Direct

Social psychology cannot be closed in the ivory tower. It must be directly related to life of lay people and transferred for them. The book by Masi Noor and Marina Cantacuzino fulfils exactly this need. Forgiveness is an important part of human repertoire and its description and analysis should be brought close to people. The book, through fantastic artistic drawings as well as comprehensive, smart, relevant, and meaningful text, provides a unique example of how to carry this mission. This way brings social psychological knowledge to many thousands of individuals who can think and reflect about human behaviour of forgiveness. Author: Daniel Bar-Tal, Professor Emeritus, School of Education, Tel Aviv University, Israel and Founder of SISO: Save Israel. Stop the Occupation

Forgiveness is an important topic that raises many issues for the resolution of interpersonal and societal conflicts; it is to the credit of the authors that they engage with these issues in such an approachable way in this admirably succinct volume which will appeal to a wide audience. Author: Miles Hewstone, Professor of Social Psychology and Public Policy, University of Oxford

This beautiful graphic book is so important to communicate the F word: forgiveness. Forgiveness is so powerful because it makes our society and ourselves more moral. It can break the cycle of revenge and re-humanize perpetrators of violence, and enable them to change. Forgiveness can enable perpetrators to discover empathy for their victims and can bring about truth and reconciliation. The list of powerful results of forgiveness is long, and for the first time is communicated in an engaging artistic way by one of my favourite charities with Dr Masi Noor. This book will become a moral guide to readers, including young people, on how to make the world a better place. Author: Professor Simon Baron-Cohen, University of Cambridge and author of Zero Degrees of Empathy

If the killer of my daughter were to ask for my forgiveness, I'd forgive because forgiveness is a kind of revenge. When you forgive, you sleep more peacefully because you have no enemy to hate. You are free. This amazing book shows how to overcome your pain, it deals with humanity's most moral values. Read this book and spread the message to make our world more peaceful. Author: Bassam Aramin, Co founder of 'Combatants for Peace' and The Forgiveness Project storyteller

To hurt and hurt others is to be human. How, then, does one recover and make amends? Noor, Cantacuzino, and Standing attempt to unravel this quandary in a charming graphic exploration of wrongdoing, redress, and recovery. Through illustrated testimonials, biographical examples, and excerpts of psychological research, they explore the limits and potential of forgiveness, its application at the individual and societal levels, and its biological effects upon the giver and receiver. Though Noor, Cantacuzino, and Standing endorse forgiveness as healthy and useful, they acknowledge its complicated aspects, such as the threat of insincerity and its potential use as a weapon. Standing's sunny colors embody optimism and anger as nimbly as her rough-edged lines capture frown lines and finely braided hair. The title is part of a series, including Anxiety Is Really Strange and Trauma Is Really Strange, which uses simple illustrations to unpack inherently complex concepts. This meditative ode on grace has lasting resonance, and it's packaged in a beautiful, small-format volume that feels like a gift.  Source: Publishers Weekly

Noor MasiDr. Masi Noor is a social psychologist and faculty member of the School of Psychology at Keele University, UK. He completed his PhD degree at Sussex University under Rupert Brown’s supervision. Masi’s main line of research focuses on studying the psychological experiences of victims and perpetrators with the aim to better understand effective conflict resolution strategies between adversary individuals, groups and communities. He coined the term Competitive Victimhood (the tendency of both adversary parties competing over their share of their victimhood) and was among some of the first researchers to systematically study the concept of forgiveness. He has published numerous journal articles on these concepts. 

barry sommer
Marina Cantacuzino is an award-winning journalist who in 2003, in response to the imminent invasion of Iraq, embarked on a personal project collecting stories from people who had lived through violence, tragedy or injustice and sought forgiveness rather than revenge. In 2004, she founded The Forgiveness Project (, a charitable organization that uses real personal narratives to explore how ideas around forgiveness, reconciliation and conflict resolution can be used to impact positively on people's lives. In 2012, Marina spoke at the UN General Assembly about the work of The Forgiveness Project and, in 2015, she was awarded an Honorary Fellowship by the Dalai Lama Centre for Compassion.

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