I notice that there is a strangle-hold of guilt on every cell in my body and it has been there for decades. Unnoticed. Wow. What is constant becomes invisible and completely unnoticed.
It's a nameless, constant guilt, and it has been choking me for a long time.
And what am I guilty of?
One thing only. I'm guilty of not doing all the things I think I should do.
When I wash the dishes I'm guilty of wasting water by letting the tap run. When I drive through McDonald's I'm guilty of destroying the environment and my body. The drip of guilt in the veins is continuous.
I try to out run it, to throw off the dreadful weight of guilt in a thousand ways every day. I donate to charity. I pay the fine for my transgressions by punishing myself with an internal barrage of self-criticism. I meditate, I pray, I read, I try to find some refuge from the guilt, I rest in the purity of open awareness. I clean the house, hug the children, give undivided, silent, loving attention to the people I work with, look my husband in the eyes and tell him he is the best man I have ever known. I scurry frantically from one good act to the next all day long in an effort to stamp out the feelings of guilt, as if I were stamping out a fire in the house.
Still, the guilt hunts me, it finds me like predator finds prey.
I'm telling you this because I see this circle of running from guilt has been the substance of my life as seen from the point of view of the mind.
Guilt is a mind-created fiction and it drives people nuts, me included. "Might is right" says guilt as it uses whatever tactics of coercion it can to manipulate the body towards the idealized behavior.
Guilt is supposed to be the inner police man that prevents wrong acts. Yet maybe it is the fuel that propels acts of destruction.
I've been running from guilt all my life and now I am looking at it directly. In this looking it disappears.