Sadness isn’t itself a virtue. You know your heart best when it breaks, and you can come to see, that though you feel grief, your heart isn’t actually “broken”.
Shame is an inherited system, but who does it serve?
Those who want to control another. Are the keepers better than the kept? Are the shepards actually wiser than their flock? Have they ever been? What they have been is cunning, and perceptive, and more than willing to exploit aspects of human nature, and in the case of shame keep you dependant on their sanctioning of your valid place in society. You are told, “We are wise and compassionate. We understand you are a bad person, but we will forgive you if you obey us.” Is this not so?
This is why we turn up dirt on celebrities perhaps? To apply shame to them, because we see them as having too much? Yes, the heart that gives to them with one hand slaps them with the other, and we scapegoat them for living like we want to live.
Shame is used as a discrediting process in areas where competition is very intense, and it seems pretty trendy in today’s world. It’s used as a discrediting process in areas where they would seek deference for any reason. If you can’t be left to your own devices (read: can’t be trusted to be good), then you must be assured of punishment/rejection if you won’t adhere to the consensus belief. Shame is not motivated by wisdom. It’s motivated by fear.
Shame is shameful? Yes. A weak attempt to grasp and hold souls. Some people consent. It seems easier to allow another to tell you how the world is so you can just keep things “in your comfort zone”. But the problem with that is you are one of a limited group who is making that choice, and there will inevitably be others who have made a different choice, and well… You live with them. So your leaders give you shame as an explanation for why their choice was right and yours wrong, so that you don’t have to think about it much more beyond that. People get comfortable in shaming others. “Taking them down a peg.” Tell me, have any of you bettered your lives in any way by taking another person down a peg? Did it serve any constructive purpose for you personally at all?
It just felt bad. Perhaps a short term win in the corporate game. And those gains wind up leading to a loss, but we are told that’s ok too. It just saved your boss the trouble of intervening.
I consider myself a pragmatist, and I like to do the most work with the least energy possible. It’s more satisfying that way, and I can actually enjoy what I do. I have to date not once found that I accomplished anything of worth by belittling another. Quite the opposite. Even in school I gained more from even taking the “little people” and showing them that they were useful. They were quite happy and even eager to be useful.
Shame creates its own defeat, because it is an inherently flawed system. Shame enough of the little people and rather than having more compliant people, you wind up with a growing number of angry people. Then if someone with some insight comes along, like say Marx, and shows that he understands their anger and even says “I know how to fix it”, well… The fear that shame is based on leads to its own self fulfilling prophetic end, and the people “who had no shame” break it all. It goes in a vicious cycle.
We don’t have to be angry people to deal with shame in a sweeping way. We don’t have to lose our minds to regain our hearts.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.