Here's the first page of the ebook...
(Ambivalence Turned Inwards)
From etymology (the study of historical linguistic change, especially as manifested in individual words)…
Guilt stems from gylt "crime, sin, fault, fine," of unknown origin, though some suspect a connection to O.E. gieldan "to pay for, debt," but O.E.D. editors find this "inadmissible phonologically". The mistaken use for "sense of guilt" is first recorded 1690. "Guilt by association" is first recorded in 1941. "Guilty" is from O.E. gyltig, from gylt.
Guilt is a cognitive or an emotional experience that occurs when a person realizes or believes—accurately or not—that he or she has violated a moral standard, and bears significant responsibility for that violation. It is closely related to the concept of remorse (which adds the dimension of sadness, shame or responsibility).
In psychology, as well as in ordinary language, guilt is an affective state in which one experiences conflict at having done something that one believes one should not have done, or conversely, having not done something one believes one should have done. It gives rise to a feeling which does not go away easily, driven by “conscience.” Freud described this as the result of a struggle between the ego and the superego parental imprinting. Freud rejected the role of God as punisher in times of illness or rewarder in time of wellness. Thus, while removing one source of guilt from patients, he described another. This was the unconscious force within the individual, and Freud thought this contributed to illness. In a more general but still Freudian sense, the victim of someone else's accident or bad luck may be offered criticism; the theory being that the victim may be at fault for having attracted the other person's hostility. Guilt was the factor that created the calamity, albeit the process was out of awareness. The punishment of suffering confirmed the fault of the sufferer. Guilt and its causes, merits, and demerits are common themes in psychology and psychiatry. The use of guilt here is not referring to the mere fact of being guilty of something, but refers to seeing or projecting one's mistakes, while not knowing what to do about them or refusing to correct them.
Here’s another perspective, from psychology:
In this definition, guilt is a negative, paralyzing emotion, based on non-acceptance of oneself or the situation, and it leads to depression and frustration rather than change or improvement. Guilt is usually a negative focus upon oneself: "I am an evil person. I can't bear myself. I am unworthy." While this response may appear in a religious guise, it often turns out to be a form of self-deprecating laziness. This can even lead to self-hatred, and certainly contributes to lack of self-confidence. Instead of recognizing that one’s actions are incorrect, one gets the feeling as if one is unworthy, as if "I" am intrinsically bad.
In Buddhism such type of guilt is categorized as a disturbing attitude: one doesn't see the situation clearly and may well be a tricky form of self-centeredness associated with anxiety, and sometimes depression.
In other words, guilt has a notorious down side; a rotten underbelly that manifests as conflict, while at the same time obfuscates awareness of underlying feelings. Guilt can negatively influence behavior.
The article on this webpage is a small sample of the overall number of articles this author has written. For more information and access to all the articles available by this author, click on the “200+ Articles” button in the menu section of this or any other page on this website (menu buttons are on the upper left of each page). Each article is written for public consumption, to provide information related to but not necessarily covered in the author’s ebooks. These articles, whether proffered on this website or through Article Directories or Blogs, are not meant to be a substitute for psychotherapy or mental health treatment of any kind. This and all articles by this author can be reproduced, as long as credit is given to Steven T. Griggs, Ph.D., A PSYCHOLOGICAL CORPORATION, who is solely responsible for the contents.
Disclaimer: Ads are selected by Google and are placed on this website for marketing and other purposes. The owner of this website does not accept responsibility for the content of the Ads, nor for the experiences of parties following their links or partaking of their services.