See post 26. Nick sees accountability and forgiveness as incompatible, which is why he can't grasp Christianity. His way is the law of retaliation. As a general note, Exodus says 'an eye for an eye' (Exodus 21:24-25) but this was never interpreted literally in the Hebrew Tradition. Again it's one of those instances where people read literally, without access to the relevant commentary and teaching, and so assume a meaning ... This rule was interpreted in a number of ways. The most obvious being financial reparation for damage done, and also that to bear false witness renders the liar liable to the punishment he desired to be inflicted on the victim of his lies. The more profound spiritual interpretation is that one should meditate upon the injustice done to others, and realise that when we harm another we harm ourselves. Christ correlated this with the idea of forgiveness: we should forgive if we wish to be forgiven. Forgiveness is then a higher and more noble form of justice. Reparation is more worldly and often the cause of seemingly unending cycles of violence – it's all part of the suffering the Buddha speaks of, and as long as we cling onto it, there is no escape from it ... the many lives and the many hells are there not because we have to pass through them, but because we won't let go of them. They're self-generated. They're part of maya. In Kyudo, Japanese archery, they talk about releasing the arrow the way a baby lets go of your finger – it's called 'mushin' and is often translated as 'no-mind'. The baby just ... lets go. Forgiveness is the same, it's a letting go of suffering and the desire for suffering.