Are You Criticizing Yourself? Buddhists Have a Message That You Need to Hear

Some of us blame ourselves way too much. Whether it’s our job, or relationship, it’s like our mind falls into the trap of thinking it’s always our fault. It’s becomes a limiting habit that’s difficult to stop.

But you don’t have to be a spiritual guru to realize that self-blame is pretty useless and harmful.

Regardless of whether you were right or wrong, it doesn’t really serve a purpose.

The main problem with it is that we’re reacting instead of taking action. It leaves us mentally stuck, blocking ourselves from seeing the bigger picture. It essentially stops us from living a peaceful life.

However, one philosophy that can help us to stop constantly self-blaming is Buddhism. Buddhism provides two essential truths that are difficult to perceive in the midst of self-blaming.

1) Truth 1: Change is the only constant in the universe.

Buddhists believe that change is the cycle of life. Everything goes through change. The weather changes from day to day, you are born and eventually you’ll pass away, and you’re physical body changes moment to moment. Change exists everywhere. It’s impossible to deny.

When we blame ourselves for something, it’s useful to realize that change is inevitable. We all make mistakes, but that doesn’t mean those mistakes define us. They aren’t us and by having that experience, we’ve already changed. There’s no need to blame. Only to learn.

2) Truth 2: Causes and conditions.

Change is also based on causes and conditions. Buddhism say that yes, we have the power to change causes and conditions, but only to a certain extent.

The truth is, there are literally thousands and thousands of causes and conditions that could be attributed to whatever dismal situation we are in today.

We’re never fully in control of situations or other people. There are countless unknown factors plus the inevitably of change.

How could you possibly blame yourself when there are so many other factors involved?

Why are these two factors important?

When we understand that change is a fact of life – and that causes and conditions are also responsible, we can start letting go a little.

As the great Leo Buscaglia said:

“Let go. Why do you cling to pain? There is nothing you can do about the wrongs of yesterday. It is not yours to judge. Why hold on to the very thing which keeps you from hope and love?”

Originally published by The Power of Ideas, Ideapod’s blog.

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