NEW MOON – Remorse

Published Thursday, 26 June 2014

When we see clearly
our own lack of virtue
we are filled with grief;
here and hereafter we grieve.

Dhammapada v. 15

If we were to stub our toe and not feel pain we would be in trouble. Pain is a message saying, ‘pay attention here’. If we were to act or speak cruelly without our heart feeling remorse, we would similarly be in trouble. How could we learn? Despite appearances remorse is not something going wrong. It is there to protect us; a sort of immune system. We can listen to it, accept it, invite the pain in our hearts to teach us how not to follow heedlessness in future. Becoming lost in remorse will lead to guilt; we've missed the point. We don’t learn by taking delight in hating oursleves or others for making a mistake.

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