THE BEAST – ABUSE – GUILT – SHAME
I’ve had a few loved ones, dear to my heart, who, before they came in to my life, were abused in ways I can barely imagine – Physically, Sexually, Mentally or Verbally. It was from them, I first learned – on a very personal level – about the natures of the Four Horsemen: The Beast, Abuse, Guilt, & Shame.
What they experienced and felt – the hurts, pains and psychological separation from their own true Human Spirit – my life, no matter how chaotic it might have been – could never come close to those traumas of theirs. These were Individuals who – though partly separated from their true Identity – still carried within their being – great values and substance of character. As best as I could, or perhaps as much as I was capable of – I tried to provide them with love, empathy and support. Sadly, there were times when it wasn’t enough. It was neither party’s fault – it was the nature of the Beast. And a complicated Beast it is.
The Beast honors no standard of value or substance. It is at odds with every Concept, Thought, Word and Deed that comprises the totality of the Human Spirit: Body, Mind, Heart and Human Soul. It denies Individuals every aspect of what makes them Free Souls.
And worse, it’s like a Plague. It can infect the very people who once bore the same anguish they now inflict on others. Parents, and/or close Relatives, who – if you asked – would profusely proclaim their Love for their Children, all the while abusing those children, as they themselves had been abused by their Parents. Lest you think that is the primary area of the Plague, I see it seep into every aspect of our Society: Spouses with their Spouses, Teachers with their Students, Athletic Coaches with their Players, School mates ridiculing other School mates to the point of those targeted, committing suicide – and even Business owners with their Workers.
On a broader scale: Political, Economic, Social, Spiritual and Religious leaders. Of those promulgating rules, regulations, doctrines and dogmas – which cement their power and control. So Leaders morph into Demagogues, who morph into Autocrats, Tyrants, Despots or Dictators. They’re basically all the same, it just depends upon which country and Society is being discussed, and which avenue they choose in their rise to Power.The Beast is comprised of three forms: ABUSE, GUILT, and SHAME. And each is used with the multi-purposes of diminishing the Free Will and Self Worth of the intended Targets – all the better to assume Control and Power over them.
Abuse is a multi-headed monster. It pervades every form of human endeavor, every age group, almost every culture, etc. It can start at the earliest of ages – and last a life time. Its forms and types are as numerous and varied as the Human Mind can contemplate. As written above, it can be the Parent/Family Members over Child, Spouse over Spouse, Employer over Worker, Government over its Citizens, a Religion over its worshipers, Technological Abuse, even a Child over another Child. Its goal is manipulation, control and Power over others. All of which are anathema to the beautiful qualities and attributes of the Free Human Spirit. And one of the vilest tools the Abuser uses to accomplish that goal is Guilt.
Guilt is the most pernicious, heinous crime committed against Humanity. It infects the Mind, Heart and Soul of its victims and as a consequence, even the Human Body. It is the tool, even the weapon, the Abuser uses to justify and give sanction to their actions of manipulation and control of others. The first aspect of Guilt is to diminish the Individual’s Mind, Heart and Soul, because without diminishment the Individual can not be Guilted. Two strengths of the Free Soul are the clarity of mind and thought of its reasoning intellect, and the value of its Self-Worth. Guilt, to succeed must destroy and replace both of them.
The weapon used is Disparagement – constant and unrelenting – of the Targets’ Reason and Self-worth. The Targets’ thoughts and actions are exposed to constant judgments belittling their value and correctness. Not only are the Targets of Abuse suffering the consequences of Abuse, but they now begin to question if perhaps they are somehow responsible for their plight – even though they have not a clue as to how or why they bear such responsibility. But how else to explain to themselves this constant anger, criticism, or worse, on behalf of their Abuser? The reality is they bear no such responsibility. It’s simply another weapon the Abuser uses to justify their dishonorable actions. And with that, the Targets begin their descent into Shame.
There are many definitions of Shame. I’ll leave it at this: “a painful feeling of guilt, regret, self-hate, or sadness that you have because you think, or know you have done something wrong.” Remember, for the most part their Abusers were once people whom the Targets relied upon, trusted, or loved. With those supports gone, these diminished Individuals are now thrown into a world of uncertainty, doubt, untrust, confusion – even self-loathing. And worst of all, the loss of the most precious part of being in any honored relationship – Safety and all it implies, Mentally, Emotionally, and Physically.
Faced with all of this, what initially was only the questioning of their responsibility for all the Abuse, it now becomes – with the constant badgering of the Abuser – acceptance and Ownership, that they must be the ones at fault. The Targets of the Beast – through Abuse, Guilt and Shame – are now complicit, not only intellectually, but to the very depths of their Human Souls. The Targets are now Victims! Or possibly Warriors!
The light of the Human Spirit is not easily confined, and most certainly, impossible to extinguish. And nothing stands more strongly as evidence than that of the Warrior – be it Male or Female of any age – even a young child. Who are the Warriors? The Warriors are the Abused ones, who see through their pain and suffering to question not their own role and responsibility, but to question the role and responsibility of their Inflictors of such terror. Oh they may succumb to Guilt and Shame, but not enough to become complicit – as the abused Victims do – to such mind numbing behavior. On the contrary, seeing their Abusers for what they are – they now Fight it.
The act of survival runs deep in the Human Spirit – even Victims whose Free Wills have been corrupted by the horrors of Abuse. Though their world is uncertain and impossible to rationally comprehend, they understand, if only intuitively, that the need to survive demands some kind of protection. The process of protecting themselves, I call Fortressing.
Fortressing, the consequence of being beset – possibly for years – by the Abuse, Guilt and Shame visited upon them by the Beast – is sadly, partly of the Victims own making! Remember, the Abusers of their Victims, are people initially either needed, respected, relied on, or even Loved. A parent, a boss, a friend, a loved one – even a Spiritual Leader.
In order to survive the effects of their Abusers, the Victims – and to a lesser degree the Warriors – need to protect their depleted sense of self worth. That protection is accomplished through the aforementioned Fortressing. Picture a Medieval Castle with 50’ high walls, on an Island and the only entry is through a drawbridge gated entrance.
It is within this newly constructed Fortress where the Targeted Victims deposit hurt feelings, emotions, fears, self doubt – and most of all – Trust in almost everyone! The problem is that in that process, they unknowingly deposit parts or all of their Free Will and Choice – and most tragic of all – not only their sense of self-worth, but the all important human emotions of connecting to another with Compassion, and Empathy and Joy. The irony is that now, that protective Fortress, has also become the Prison to all the Human qualities that some day might have made them Free.
The Fortress is a mental metaphor their abused mind has created. The problem is it seeps into the Psyche, the Heart and Soul. All those emotions that have been locked into the Fortress are blocked from all relations from that time forward. They have literally foreclosed on their future. Oh yes, now they can survive, they are protected, but at what cost, and at what loss to being in true ownership of their lives.
As the saying goes, “There are two sides to every coin.” If ever a cliché had even a modicum of truth, it is here and now. All of the above has been but one side of the coin – that of the Beast. The other side of the coin is everything the Beast is not! Big surprise – I speak of the Human Spirit.
In all the categories of abuse that we have discussed: Parent/Family members over Child, Spouse over Spouse, etc., there exists counters to each. I think the Parent/Family Members Child Abuse is the most detestable and horrific. Abuse of the child can start when they are still infants and totally incapable of any understanding of it – so let us begin there.
For starters, no one is born with Guilt, Shame or Sin – contrary to the Concept that professes so! A concept that decrees from the moment of birth, a new born infant, as it matures, has to spend its life seeking forgiveness and redemption for something it had no hand in. Can anything be more immoral, unethical and horrifying to advance the premise that a new born infant, who is the personification of purity and lack of deceit – has a future of enslavement? An Infant, who only knows at that point – its Life. That spends its time seeing, recognizing, looking, touching and exploring, and later, trying to walk and run. Every day is an enormous adventure, and all of that curiosity and exploration is to be taken away from it by instilling in it the premise of Guilt.
Every infant comes into Life as a Pure, Innocent, Free Soul. And the only Sin is that Doctrine, or Parent, who would instill within that Infant the Concept of Sin, Shame and Guilt. The percentage and number of Children who are Abused each year is Horrific! But not all Children, born into abusive Parents, totally succumb to self-blame and Guilt. And not all Parents, themselves born into abusive Parents, succumb to Abusing the Children to whom they ultimately give birth.
It is these Warrior Children and Parents, able to Free themselves from the chains of the Beast – along with the magnitude of Parents never Abused – all of whom are there to counter the Beast.
I fully realize The depth and scope of the iniquitous impact on the Human Spirit of the Four Horseman is impossible to address in one small Blog. But for now we will end this one with the following.
History is testimony to the fact that the Human Spirit is a Beauteous Light impossible to extinguish, and even most difficult to diminish. And that applies equally to Mass Movements of groups seeking Freedom from Oppressors and Individuals seeking their Free Souls while in Abuse and Crisis.