Words that are synonymous with South Africa are apartheid and loadshedding. If loadshedding continues for much longer, our country will be recognised for two different periods – apartheid and loadshedding.
The reason for these two periods is easy to identify: rabid racism and rampant corruption.
There are two other words that are ingrained into South Africa’s collective lexicon, those are sorry and shame. These are insidious and dangerous, and their reasons are much harder to fathom.
Have you ever had someone bump into you by accident, and they said “sorry”? I believe that everywhere else in the world where you’re more likely to hear excuse me or pardon.
I hear the word shame bandied about regularly too. I have a family member who says shame to everything good and bad. I could say, “I won one million rand.” They would say, “Shame, that’s great.” Talk about having one foot on the accelerator and one on the brake.
Sorry and shame both have very low energy levels in David Hawkins’s Map of Consciousness. Shame is the lowest at 20 and sorry/sorrow would be associated with grief which registers at 75. Just for context, anything registering under 200 is dense and negative. And, really does not serve you and me.
I’m sure that you, like me, have been shamed. Like me, you have probably shamed others too. I know that I’ve got into some unbelievable mischief that has made me ashamed of myself.
I sometimes still feel guilty and ashamed for not being able to protect my mother from my abusive step-father when I was young. And, that she said that she was ashamed of me for not being able to do it, didn’t help matters either. In truth, it left an indelible scar on my psyche.
You may have a different trigger to me, but I’m sure there is one that puts you straight into shame.
When we experience shame, it’s always painful, we lose face, become discredited and sometimes feel like a non-person.
Shame, regardless of how it is perceived, can ultimately lead to the development of neurosis. Shamed people can become shy, withdrawn and introverted. And, if you identify as a perfectionist, be aware shame could be driving you to become rigid, driven and intolerant.
At its essence, shame is death. In ancient cultures, tribe members who failed to meet the expectations of their community were often banished into exile as a form of punishment. Without the protection of a tribe, a banished member would invariably die.
I’ve realised that until I deal with my shame, it will keep on hampering me from becoming who I truly was meant to be, a divine masterpiece creating the master-work that is my life.