Disarming the power of guilt.wma
Disarming the Power of Guilt
Guilt is something everyone has felt at one moment or another. When we intentionally do something harmful or wrong it is easier for us to label and work through.
It leaves little or no room for mystery.
Often however the cause is more subtle and indirect, and many times not even our fault, for example a child who feels responsible for his parents divorce.
Usually in such a case when we analyze our guilt we are able to let go of it with less effort. Half the battle can be just finding the source.
In such a case it is unwarranted guilt. But is it ever valid?
Yes. Feeling guilt is our conscience at work. It is its way of letting us know not to do something again or that something is hurtful to society, which in turn comes back to us. Not as a punishment, but as a law and effect, the Yin and Yang of life.
However it is not meant to become a debilitating burden to be carried for the rest of our lives.
What would be the point of continuous mental and emotional punishment for a momentary lapse of good judgment, or even worse from lack of knowledge of the consequences of an action? It is meant to be a reprimand or warning, sometimes short, sometimes longer (depending on the severity of the mistake). It is much like a 4 years hold who falls while running on stairs or burns his hand on a candle.
It hurts him and that deters him from repeating that action.
Of course there is no guilt involved in those examples. What if one preschooler pushes another and he falls however, then he might feel guilty.
Though such an action did not hurt him – it hurt someone else – therefore teaching him not to push others.
The physical pain is substituted for the emotion of guilt, and without it people would do harm to each other constantly.
Before beginning this meditation– the misconception you have to let go of is that only children are allowed to make mistakes and that the learning process ends in adulthood. By doing this we can be more forgiving towards ourselves and others and guilt can serve it’s purpose of our conscience warning us when we do something inappropriate.
While doing this meditation you may find you feel guilty about things you never considered. If so this can be a starting point to find the root and lesson that comes with it. Most of all this is a meditation not to absolve us from our guilty conscience, but rather to help us find the cause, take the gift and lesson our experience carries and get in touch with our humanity by bettering ourselves and in turn the world around us.
Record in your journal prior to the meditation the issue or issues you carry guilt for. After the meditation record your feelings and lessons, if any, from what you previously wrote down as well as any unexpected revelations that may have come through the exercise.