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pic     It’s been one of my life’s Major Challenges: morphing my deep guilt into workable gratitude.

Guilt for what? Hey, everything! From the war in Vietnam when I was a kid (“How can you laugh and be happy,” adults would say, “when there’s a war going on in Vietnam?“), to the plight of starving children in the world, to the neighbor who has more problems than we had. What the adults didn’t realize as they thought they were teaching me compassion, was that I was taking on such pain. Pain for the war veterens, pain for the world’s children, pain and guilt.  

The world for me became a place of horror, and as an adult I’ve been dealing with depression for many years.

What changed? I did. In my mind. I've been reading a lot of Wayne Dyer's books, most recently The Power of Intention , and he has answered this deep, life-challenging question: How can I experience any sort of happines or joy, when there are people and animals suffering?  

Dr. Dyer’s answer is this:
“You’ve been taught that feeling good in a world where so much suffering exists is an immoral stance to take... you believe you can’t have joy and still be a good person. (p.195) ... But, he says, when you‘re feeling this guilt, “ask yourself if feeling bad is going to make the situation any better. You’ll discover that the only thing that feeling bad accomplishes ... is to plummet you into anxiety, despair, depression, and, of course, stress.” (p.193)

In other words, if I want to be of service in this world, I’ve got to pull myself together. And the only way, I’ve discovered, out of this pain, is to feel it and move on, rather than live in it continuously.  

Instead of feeling guilty about having a beautiful, healthy meal, I can feel gratitude!

And this gratitude helps pull me out of the despair, out of my inability to act, and gives me energy. Life energy. Gratitude give me the ability to actually do something helpful with my life.

I've got a better look at this issue on my blog, [Link Removed] - I hope you'll take a look.

Thank you, dear Sisters.

Suzann, Your links have been removed, please consider upgrading to premium membership.

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