When we consider guilt from a religious perspective, we find this tool has often been misused by religions and religious leaders to keep their flocks in line. One way we can fall prey to this abuse is when we believe the pastor is the master. When we put all our faith in one particular religious leader, we open ourselves to the mistakes and flaws they carry with them.
Another way we can fall prey to religious abuse is when we give away our power to think and make decisions for ourselves. By letting the religious leader and his faithful followers dictate what we think, we close our minds to different opinions. These opposing opinions might also include the voice of reason and the voice of The Divine. Any attempt to think outside of the basket into which we’ve placed our religious eggs is met with guilt, judgment, and often condemnation.
This is the negative side of guilt — the ugly, manipulative side of guilt. When we fall prey to this abuse, we will come to believe that no matter what we do, no matter how hard we try, we will never be good enough. Our self-worth will be attacked, and our every decision and action will come under scrutiny, with ourselves being the most severe judge of our behaviors.
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Our purpose is to help individuals to heal who have been injured by religion or the religious. We welcome your comments and questions.