Guilt. Who hasn’t felt guilt or remorse over something they have done…or not done? Guilt is one of those emotions that can tear you apart. It chips away slowly… without realization until it has consumed your soul to an inconsolable point of torment.
So how does one learn to deal with and let go of guilt? Is it only a matter of time? Is guilt innate or a part of our socialization? Or both? It has to be partially innate because as human beings we do feel responsible for our actions. Isn’t that what separates us from other animal species? But then again… if I was never taught to feel guilty would I still feel it?
The amount of guilt we feel depends on the situation as well. Taking my sister’s candy without her knowledge or hurting someones feeling will not make me feel the same type or depth of guilt.
It is the soul clenching guilt that I speak of. This type of guilt you cannot shake or escape. Thus, I assume there are actions that result in a guilty soul and actions that cause momentary guilt.
Additionally, there are cultural differences that dictate the feeling of guilt… Which then, proves the socialization aspect of the concept of guilt.
For instance, premarital sex in the West seems to be the social norm. If you are twenty and still a virgin… people look at you like you are some form of anomaly. However, in the Eastern cultures, you can be severely punished for having lost your virginity before marriage. You are taught from the very beginning that premarital sex is a sin… a sin against yourself, society and most importantly a sin against God.
I sometimes feel my self drifting into depression… which I think stems from guilt. I feel like it sits on my chest, weighing me down… chaining my mind from moving on.
I have never intentionally hurt anyone… then why do I feel this over whelming guilt? I guess the key word here being “intentionally”. I have unintentionally hurt someone. And now that someone is unreachable… galaxies away. How do I deal with this type of guilt?
I feel guilt over things I shouldn’t have done… things that went against my being.
I feel guilt for not having done enough…
I wish I could be a clean slate again… would I do anything differently in my life to rid myself of the guilt? Or is guilt just part of everyone’s life? I suppose no one can every be guilt free because then you are not human… And guilt is a very human conception. And I am only a human.
Even then, why can’t I grasp and apply the simple concept of letting go of the guilt I carry from my past? I guess it is not so simple after all.