Everyone who attended the Inter Faith Contact Group Meeting on April 18 at the Unitarian Church, Brighton was deeply moved by the talk given by Michael Henderson.

He is a remarkable author and media presenter who has devoted his life to bringing to the attention of the world real stories of atrocities and forgiveness from around the world.

How can you forgive someone who has harmed you or killed or maimed your dear ones? Does forgiving mean condoning the evil deed? Does forgiving mean giving up our right for justice?

In his moving book The Forgiveness Factor Stories Of Hope In A World Of Conflict, Michael Henderson cites examples of the mother from the north of Ireland who has forgiven her son's killers and started the peace process.

He tells the story of Nelson Mandela who forgave those who sent him into exile for 27 years. So can we not forgive each other at home for smaller evils in our daily lives to promote a happier home?

Many authorities around the world believe that the most powerful emotion underlying self-healing is forgiveness. Hatred, anger and the desire for revenge are at the root of ill-health in an individual or in a community.

Yet it requires enormous courage to forgive someone. In our own daily lives we regularly cause grief to each other in our relationships, both at home and at work. It is only human to err. We seek forgiveness every day. But can we forgive others as easily?

All the major world religions state that selfishness, greed, attachment, lust and anger are the root causes of illness and believe fear causes hatred. The strength to get rid of fear can only come from reassurance generated by genuine spiritual strength in an individual or community.

I think the answer lies in bringing politicians and people together and in promoting spirituality in the communities.

Let's make universal spirituality a manifesto for all governments. Praying together generates a loving feeling towards others as it reminds us of our true spiritual nature, the peace-loving self who wants to share love, not hatred.

Let us start with toddlers at every school in the world. Begin the day with an assembly of prayer for goodwill, compassion and love for everyone. Let us make it world political issue to promote respect and love for God and his creation. Let us start at home with ourselves. Only then will we all stay naturally happier and healthier forever