Dissolving guilt

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Jbrooke
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Dissolving guilt

Post by Jbrooke » Wed May 09, 2012 1:20 am

I feel that guilt begets more guilt which then fuels the ego and perpetuates the vicious cycle.

So, regardless of how extreme or consuming the guilt is, how long ago the behavior that triggered the guilt was executed, whether or not the behaviors occurred decades ago, three months ago or yesterday or even if these actions/behaviors continue in a compulsive manner, how destructive to others or yourself the behaviors have been, including anything from committing murder, shoplifting, cheating on a loved one, lying to others to repeatedly forgetting or avoiding tasks, or putting your needs/desires in front of other's needs.... how should guilt be approached? Is that contingent on how extreme the behavior that brought it about is or was? And if so, who is the one to judge that?

What do we do with guilt? Should all guilt be dissolved? And, if not, who is to be the judge of what guilt should or shouldn't be dissolved? (I assume ourselves- but even that is tricky!)

I suppose my ultimate question is:
How should we approach guilt?

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Webwanderer
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Re: Dissolving guilt

Post by Webwanderer » Wed May 09, 2012 3:01 am

Jbrooke wrote:I feel that guilt begets more guilt which then fuels the ego and perpetuates the vicious cycle.
I couldn't agree more. So, if this is true, then the sooner one can release guilt the better off one is.
how should guilt be approached? Is that contingent on how extreme the behavior that brought it about is or was?
It is only contingent on your willingness to learn the lessons that the feeling of guilt offers. To the degree that you are willing to honestly face the effects of your actions, guilt can be released in favor of love and compassion and worthiness. Understand, guilt is not a bad thing. It is a red flag letting us know that we are out of alignment with our true nature.
And if so, who is the one to judge that?
There is no one qualified to judge the life that brought one to the present moment. The conditions of the present moment are not a matter of right and wrong, but of cause and effect. And primary to that effect is how one feels about what unfolded. As previously stated, guilt, as are all negative/painful emotions, are an indicator of being out of alignment. The greater the pain, the more out of alignment one is.
How should we approach guilt?
As a gift. There is nothing can be done to change the past. It is permanent in that it can't be changed. But it doesn't have to be a dark cloud forever hanging over your head. What you experience in this human form is but a fraction of who/what you are in totality - your greater being. There is nothing this extension of consciousness into form can do to upset its greater purpose. In fact, the mistakes that we make are just grist for the mill of the ongoing evolution of consciousness.

Our task is to find peace and happiness in a marvelously/intensely challenging world. The mistakes we make bring painful emotions which tell us we are off track. The joy and happiness we engender bring us back towards the alignment that is possible with our true nature. Again, we cannot change what has gone before. We can, and we must, learn from our mistakes. In so learning, we can then make peace with what is and recognize that we are better for the new understanding. No amount of self-judgment will improve your experience nor change what happened. Learning from the experience however, can change you in your quality of consciousness - and that, in truth, is its intent.

Two things: make peace with your world through learning from and forgiving mistakes - including judgments, look to your better, more enjoyable, feelings to guide you back toward alignment. Our whole life is likely to be an ebb and flow of this reality. The result over time is an expansion/evolution of our conscious being.

WW

Golf
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Joined: Mon May 07, 2012 4:44 pm

Re: Dissolving guilt

Post by Golf » Wed May 09, 2012 10:12 am

Jbrooke wrote:So, regardless of how extreme or consuming the guilt is, how long ago the behavior that triggered the guilt was executed, whether or not the behaviors occurred decades ago, three months ago or yesterday or even if these actions/behaviors continue in a compulsive manner, how destructive to others or yourself the behaviors have been, including anything from committing murder, shoplifting, cheating on a loved one, lying to others to repeatedly forgetting or avoiding tasks, or putting your needs/desires in front of other's needs.... how should guilt be approached? Is that contingent on how extreme the behavior that brought it about is or was? And if so, who is the one to judge that?

What do we do with guilt? Should all guilt be dissolved? And, if not, who is to be the judge of what guilt should or shouldn't be dissolved? (I assume ourselves- but even that is tricky!)

I suppose my ultimate question is:
How should we approach guilt?
For example, religion gives out many commandments and prescriptions to people, to prevent them from doing wrong. Because many people are actually thick-headed, thick-skinned and inconsiderate, or just plain unaware that what they do wrongs or hurts others. Then they get those ideas how they should behave, feel some guilt when they break them, and it "keeps them in check". Actually, religious commandments, social rules and laws seem to me to be a way of keeping unconscious people from doing too much harm to themselves and others.

But you seem totally opposite, you have what some would call, "tender conscience". To you, the opposite applies. You should be assured and comforted that you actually didn't do wrong :oops:
To you I'd say, you're absolutely not guilty, unless you're 100% sure, that what you did was blatantly wrong, and that you did it intentionally, and that you were premeditated about it. :wink:
In that case you should right it, apologize, make up for it, and then forget about it.
And if you're not sure if you're 100% sure, then it's not 100%, and you're not guilty :)
Your other flaws, they are just your "weakness". And to whom can you be guilty about your weakness? Maybe only to your ego, which demands perfection. Or to other egos (although I don't believe they think that much about you and your guilt as you do yourself). For example, a conscious person would not condemn you about weakness, but feel compassion for it and try to help you overcome it.

And what would a conscious, adult person do about right, wrong and guilt? Let's say I'm tempted to yell at my girlfriend. What would be the effect? An estranged relationship. Would I want that? No. Do I want to be caring and loving to her? Yes. Do I want a good relationship more than I want to be "right"? Yes. So, I will do my best to be less angry and more caring. And if I failed, I'd pick up and try again. And again. No guilt, just common sense.

P.s. at times like this, when I write, it may look to you like I know or understand a lot (I sure hope it's helpful). But there are parts of me that don't "listen" to my own knowledge. I'm still struggling myself too. :oops:
"If you're so smart, how come you're working at a gas station?"
-"It's a service station. We offer service, there is no higher purpose."
8)

Jbrooke
Posts: 69
Joined: Wed May 02, 2012 5:55 pm

Re: Dissolving guilt

Post by Jbrooke » Wed May 09, 2012 6:15 pm

Lots of great insights here from all of you. I know they will be very helpful. The guilt issues are so heavy and toxic for me and breaking them down into pieces I can understand and work with now feels possible. Thanks very much.

Golf
Posts: 54
Joined: Mon May 07, 2012 4:44 pm

Re: Dissolving guilt

Post by Golf » Sat May 12, 2012 11:26 pm

J, you might want to check this out:

"Rediscovering life" video by Anthony de Mello:
http://eckhart-tolle-forum.inner-growth ... =30&t=9949

In my opinion he's talking about the same things as Eckhart, but from a completely different direction, and that's what may make it very useful to you. One forum user summed it up nicely:
Wow. Just wow.

Thanks to you guys, Ive been listening to the de Mello seminar recording for the last 3 days. Amazing. What a voice of sanity. And funny! Its really too perfect.

On the recording you hear a pleasant , energetic Jesuit priest speaking in front of a large Catholic audience. With little fuss, he cheerfully begins explaining to them through stories, jokes and excercises exactly how phony, mechanical, deluded and completely selfish they are. How meaningless their lives, how false and foolish their ideas about God, love, family and country. The antidote? Awareness, awareness awareness. Wake up! These themes continue on for several hours.

Man, this isnt a seminar, its more like a spiritual atom bomb! With a smiley face painted on it! I can easily understand why the Church tried to silence the guy. Whose going to listen to them after hearing this?

How a man can keep a profoundly illusion-shattering conversation like this warm, light-hearted and funny is beyond me...a testament to his utter sincerity and wisdom. It's really something.

The connection speaker-to-audience is palpable, not unlike an ET recording. But with a bit more attitude, perhaps. ET is stillness, de Mello confronts.
I've had it in text version for years, but now I first got to see and hear this lecture and it works so much better, it's turning my mind upside down! :)
"If you're so smart, how come you're working at a gas station?"
-"It's a service station. We offer service, there is no higher purpose."
8)

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