Forgiveness is for self, more than others.
I have come to realize that to forgive another is more for healing of self, than the healing of others.
1. If we hold a grudge against another, it indicates that we place some sort of value in the existence of the "other", and that we feel let down by the one we value, that they apparently have not held a mutual respect for us.
2. If another approaches us, and asks to be forgiven, this is an attempt by the other to reveal to us that WE ARE respected by them, and that perhaps a mistake was made, or finally realized by the other. This in and of itself is an esteem booster.
3. If the injury visited upon us occured years before, we may have conciously forgotten, but subconciously we remember everything, and everything affects our daily lives and decisions. To ask forgiveness brings the old injury to light, and really reinforces the thought that the other respects us enough to recall it and the wish to make amends validates our worth in the eyes of the other.
4. This is the crossroads. To not forgive would have us lord it over the other. It would demean our own self worth, and make us small and petty. A cheap victory at best, in reality we sink lower than the original offender. To forgive would have us look at eachother as equals, as human beings, and it often removes a weight from our own spirit that we may never realized was burdening us.
Now, like the superior athelete who trains all his life with weights on his back (and accomplishes much despite it), to suddenly be free of that weight...how much more we can do, how much more we can be, when the time comes to act!
Yes, our requestor of our forgiveness receives much in the forgiving, but WE who forgive, receive so much more.
The strange thing is, we don't even realize the benefits of our kindness, until later, and it is subtle, but profound.
For this reason, the scriptures of the Christian faith compel one to forgive not once, but 70 times 7 (in one's heart and in one's deeds).
Anyway, it makes damn good logistical sense no matter how it is looked at.
My two cents.