If guilt troubles you

Acharya Prashant
7 min readFeb 11, 2020

Guilt can be both — a hugely liberating factor that liberates you from the little self, and guilt can equally be a defence of the ego.

What does ‘guilt’ say? Let’s first of all look at it. Guilt says, “I am better than how and what I did.” Guilt says, “I am better than my actions, or I am better than my thoughts. I am better than the account I gave of myself on a particular occasion, or on multiple occasions.”

That’s what guilt says.

So, guilt says, “I am a resident of the tenth floor, but unfortunately and accidentally I dropped down to the second floor.” That you are operating from the second floor is a fact. There need not be any imagination in this. But that you belong to the tenth floor, is a presumption, is a declaration that only you have certified to yourself.

What is the fact of one’s life?

That one is operating from the first floor, or second floor.

But what does one think about himself? “I belong to the tenth floor.”

And this is guilt.

“I am actually better, but I am not living as per my sublime self.”

This is guilt.

Now this can work both ways.

It can encourage you to really move upstairs, or it can console you and comfort you into remaining where you are.

You could say, “What a shame, that a resident of the tenth floor is found rolling on the second floor.” Or you could say, “Oh, when I actually do already belong to the tenth floor, it’s alright if accidentally I happen to be spotted on the second floor. These are minor accidents, they don’t count. My real place is anyway the tenth floor. That’s my home.”

Guilt can be a great alibi against improvement — “I don’t need to improve, because the faults, the foibles, the shortcomings, the lapses that I am displaying are just accidental, they are not me. They are happening despite me, they are not me. I am far better than my performance. This performance is temporary. Very soon I will return to my standard elevation.” Guilt could say that.

Or if one is honest, one would ask himself, “If I am so consistently being seen at, and operating from the second floor, do I really belong to the tenth? Or is the…

Acharya Prashant