Guilt, shame and self-love

I have checked out the article or blog “Shame v. Guilt” by Brene Brown, and I find it helpful to distinguish between guilt and shame as guilt can be a positive motivating factor to compel a person to change and improve after having failed or made mistakes whereas shame is based on the flawed or erroneous belief that we are unworthy of love and acceptance. I have come to realise that organised religions such as traditional or fundamentalist christianity or western christianity that bases their teachings on eternal damnation and penal substitution often uses shame to manipulate people who are taught to think there was something fundamentally wrong with themselves or their identity as “originally sinners” who needed to be saved from some kind of “punishment” by subscribing to the theology of whoever is preaching the so-called gospel. I have come to see that our true identity is intrinsically whole and complete and worthy of love and acceptance, and nothing we do – whether in action, word or thought – can add to or diminish our value, regardless of whether we subscribe to any religion or ideology or school of thought.

I think an excellent resource for cultivating self-love as a form of healing from our fragmented psyche is this new video “It Starts Here // Spoken Word” by Joshua Tongol. Enjoy listening and be blessed.

In my own life, growing up in a performance-oriented and reward-and-punishment system and so on, I have been struggling with a sense of insignificance and inadequacy, that is often accompanied by shame; hence, I am thankful for the teachings or literature or resources that help establish me in own true identity that is whole and complete or connect me to my highest self, whether be it esoteric spirituality or new age or psychotherapy or the like, such as Henri Nouwen’s teaching on being the beloved and Joshua Tongol’s message on self-love and Brene Brown’s exposition on overcoming shame, and I am grateful to those who have shared with me such resources as well.

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