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This individual has been belligerent in the past causing a lot of grief to myself. I've felt a great deal of animosity towards this individual in the past but after some time forgave them.

The forgiveness felt cleansing, but I still avoid contact. I feel that the spirit of forgiveness should be like starting from a tabula rasa but am concerned about a repetition of the past.

How should I react according to the precepts of Buddhism ? I feel that if I avoid the person, I have not truly forgiven them in my heart.

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I believe forgiving and avoiding are two different things. It is important to forgive people for your own peace of mind. Let go of anger and resentment, this will be good for both you and the other person.

Avoiding may be important if this person is dragging you down somehow, continuously doing bad things. You can find it several times in the Buddha's teachings. However if this person is not doing bad things anymore and you still feel bad around him because of the past, the issue is in you. You haven't let it go completely, you are still attached to your image/bruised ego.

Meditate and let go of the ego if that's the case. I know it is not easy, but it is the best thing to do.

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According to my Vajrayana teacher, avoiding is perfectly fine. It might mean that you still hold some grudges but you simply don't have to deal with them immediately. If in the current situation you don't feel strong enough to face them, avoiding is the best solution to remain calm and eliminate the chances to create further bad Karma.

On top of meditating my teacher suggests that one should make lots of good wishes for that person in order to clear the connection between the two. You can even wish that person all the happiness and success but far away from you. Imagine this person as a happy and fulfilled being possessing all the best qualities. In that way you will generate lots of compassion and realise that there is no reason to feel bad towards them and that in essence you want this person to be happy.

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