Lesson 19
Be free of all guilt

Weekly lessons that can change your life


Be free of all guilt

Guilt seems to be caused by what we did, but this is an illusion. Guilt is never caused by what we did. Guilt is something that we add later. We add guilt after we learn the consequences of our actions. This is actually great news because if guilt is something that we create, it’s something that we can heal.

The first step in releasing guilt is to find something you did that you feel guilty about. Then go back in time to the moment you did whatever you did. At that moment, didn't you have a very particular state of mind and didn't you see life in a very particular way? Weren't your actions a direct result of this very limited awareness?

Now notice what would have happened if you knew then what you know today. Wouldn't you have handled your situation in a very different way? Of course you would, but you didn't know then what you know today.

Even if you thought you knew better, you didn't know it enough to change your actions. You certainly didn't know the consequences like you do now. You only knew what you knew.

In fact, you had to make your mistake in order to gain the awareness that you have today. This is the human condition. We have to learn our lessons the hard way. We then become wiser and our lives work better.

So here is the big question. Are you willing to forgive yourself for not knowing and for not being wiser and more aware? You might as well. If you look, you were doing the very best you could with the very limited awareness and ability that you had at the time.

So forgive yourself. Forgive yourself for not being wiser and more aware. Forgive yourself for acting totally consistent with your limited ability and for any damage that was caused by your actions.

Since guilt is something you create, it is something you can release. It is possible to totally release any guilt in a moment. Sometimes it takes longer. Sometimes you need to release it over time by your declaration, "I forgive myself." Each time the guilt comes up, forgive yourself again. Eventually, the guilt stops coming back.

If you can't release a guilt, you may be dealing with a core issue. To find out, put yourself in the emotion of the guilt and look for the hurt. What would it say about you if you did this horrible thing? Then notice how you would feel if this were true about you. If this is painful, you are dealing with a core issue.

Guilt is very destructive. It sabotages your relationship with yourself and reinforces the feelings of being not okay. It robs you of your confidence and self-respect. Do whatever it takes to be free of all guilt.

Action to Take

  1. List everything you feel guilty about
    Then notice how much you have suffered as a result of your guilt. Notice how your guilt has robbed you of your confidence, your self-respect and your happiness. Notice how it has reinforced the feelings of being worthless or whatever your deeper hurt is. Now notice how different your life would be if you were totally free of all guilt. Would you like this?
  2. Set yourself free of all guilt
    Notice that with each incident, you were doing the very best you could with the limited skills and awareness that you had at the time. If you were wiser and more aware, you would have handled your situation differently, but you weren't. You only knew what you knew. So forgive yourself for not knowing. Forgive yourself for each item on your list.
  3. Notice if you have trouble letting go of a guilt
    If you have trouble letting go of a guilt, you are probably not dealing with a guilt, you are dealing with a core issue. Your actions “prove” that you are worthless, a horrible person, or whatever your issue is. To heal this hurt, find what your actions say about you. Own these aspects of you and feel the hurt willingly like a child. Let it come and let it go.

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