Guilt Quotes


Grief is not as heavy as guilt, but it takes more away from you.

All I could think of was that the teachers must've found the illegal stash of candy I'd been selling out of my dorms room. Or maybe they'd realized I got my Essay on Tom Sawyer from the Internet without ever reading the book and now they were going to take away my grade. Or worse, they were going to make me read the book.

People pontificate, "Suicide is selfishness." Career churchmen like Pater go a step further and call in a cowardly assault on the living. Oafs argue this specious line for varying reason: to evade fingers of blame, to impress one's audience with one's mental fiber, to vent anger, or just because one lacks the necessary suffering to sympathize. Cowardice is nothing to do with it - suicide takes considerable courage. Japanese have the right idea. No, what's selfish is to demand another to endure an intolerable existence, just to spare families, friends, and enemies a bit of soul-searching.

Cloud Atlas

David Mitchell

Cloud Atlas

Every man is guilty of all the good he did not do.

I've got a bad case of the 3:00 am guilts - you know, when you lie in bed awake and replay all those things you didn't do right? Because, as we all know, nothing solves insomnia like a nice warm glass of regret, depression and self-loathing.

Maybe there's more we all could have done, but we just have to let the guilt remind us to do better next time.

It is better to risk saving a guilty person than to condemn an innocent one.

Zadig

Voltaire

Zadig

There is a luxury in self-reproach. When we blame ourselves, we feel that no one else has a right to blame us. It is the confession, not the priest, that gives us absolution.

Calvin : There's no problem so awful, that you can't add some guilt to it and make it even worse.

No one blames her."
"That never matters," said Alec. "Not when you blame yourself.

Guilt is not a response to anger; it is a response to one’s own actions or lack of action. If it leads to change then it can be useful, since it is then no longer guilt but the beginning of knowledge. Yet all too often, guilt is just another name for impotence, for defensiveness destructive of communication; it becomes a device to protect ignorance and the continuation of things the way they are, the ultimate protection for changelessness.

If only it were possible to love without injury – fidelity isn’t enough: I had been faithful to Anne and yet I had injured her. The hurt is in the act of possession: we are too small in mind and body to possess another person without pride or to be possessed without humiliation. In a way I was glad that my wife had struck out at me again – I had forgotten her pain for too long, and this was the only kind of recompense I could give her. Unfortunately the innocent are always involved in any conflict. Always, everywhere, there is some voice crying from a tower.

Guilt    Life    Love    Philosophy

In an extroverted society, the difference between an introvert and an extrovert is that an introvert is often unconsciously deemed guilty until proven innocent.

Was it you or I who stumbled first? It does not matter. The one of us who finds the strength to get up first, must help the other.

Assistance    Blame    Correcting    Error    Fault    Friendship    Guilt    Help    Mistake    Redemption    Stumble    Support

So full of artless jealousy is guilt,
It spills itself in fearing to be spilt.

Hamlet

William Shakespeare

But I have my life, I’m living it. It’s twisted, exhausting, uncertain, and full of guilt, but nonetheless, there’s something there.

Guilt    Life    Living    Uncertainty

Abuse manipulates and twists a child’s natural sense of trust and love. Her innocent feelings are belittled or mocked and she learns to ignore her feelings. She can’t afford to feel the full range of feelings in her body while she’s being abused—pain, outrage, hate, vengeance, confusion, arousal. So she short-circuits them and goes numb. For many children, any expression of feelings, even a single tear, is cause for more severe abuse. Again, the only recourse is to shut down. Feelings go underground.

Abuse    Child abuse    Guilt    Healing    Innocence    Love    Manipulation    Repressed feelings    Shame    Trust

I wish I could say I felt guilty for what I did.

I don't.

True, nervous, very, very dreadfully nervous I had been and am, but why will say that I am mad?! The disease had sharpened my senses, not destroyed, not dulled them. Above all was the sense of hearing acute.

Death    Guilt    Madness

So often survivors have had their experiences denied, trivialized, or distorted. Writing is an important avenue for healing because it gives you the opportunity to define your own reality. You can say: This did happen to me. It was that bad. It was the fault & responsibility of the adult. I was—and am—innocent. The Courage to Heal by Ellen Bass & Laura Davis

My guiding principle is this: Guilt is never to be doubted.

(I)f we are going to be kind, let it be out of simple generosity, not because we fear guilt or retribution.

Disgrace

J.M. Coetzee

Disgrace

[T]his readiness to assume the guilt for the threats to our environment is deceptively reassuring: We like to be guilty since, if we are guilty, it all depends on us. We pull the strings of the catastrophe, so we can also save ourselves simply by changing our lives. What is really hard for us (at least in the West) to accept is that we are reduced to the role of a passive observer who sits and watches what our fate will be. To avoid this impotence, we engage in frantic, obsessive activities. We recycle old paper, we buy organic food, we install long-lasting light bulbs—whatever—just so we can be sure that we are doing something. We make our individual contribution like the soccer fan who supports his team in front of a TV screen at home, shouting and jumping from his seat, in the belief that this will somehow influence the game's outcome.

The hardest thing about depression is that it is addictive. It begins to feel uncomfortable not to be depressed. You feel guilty for feeling happy.

[T]his readiness to assume the guilt for the threats to our environment is deceptively reassuring: We like to be guilty since, if we are guilty, it all depends on us. We pull the strings of the catastrophe, so we can also save ourselves simply by changing our lives. What is really hard for us (at least in the West) to accept is that we are reduced to the role of a passive observer who sits and watches what our fate will be. To avoid this impotence, we engage in frantic, obsessive activities. We recycle old paper, we buy organic food, we install long-lasting light bulbswhateverjust so we can be sure that we are doing something. We make our individual contribution like the soccer fan who supports his team in front of a TV screen at home, shouting and jumping from his seat, in the belief that this will somehow influence the game's outcome.

Because no retreat from the world can mask what is in your face.

Elphaba    Guilt    Remorse    Sorrow    Witch

It has always seemed that a fear of judgment is the mark of guilt and the burden of insecurity.

No guilt is forgotten so long as the conscience still knows of it.

Beware of Pity

Stefan Zweig

Beware of Pity

You have a good heart and you think the good thing is to be guilty and kind but it's not always kind to be gentle and soft, there's a genuine violence softness and kindness visit on people. Sometimes self-interested is the most generous thing you can be.

Perestroika

Tony Kushner

Perestroika

What man ever openly apologizes for slander? It is not so much a feeling of slander as it is that of a massive lie, a misdeed not only to the slandered but also to those manipulated in the process. He has made them all, every one, his enemies, thereupon he is so overwhelmed with guilt that he will deny it until his grave.

Apologies    Deceit    Defamation    Denial    Enemy    Feelings    Feelings of weakness    Gossip    Grave    Guilt    Libel    Lies    Manipulation    Massive    Misdeed    Overwhelming    Slander


There is no client as scary as an innocent man.
"
J. Michael Haller, Criminal Defense Attorney, Los Angeles, 1962.

There is no client as scary as an innocent man."

J. Michael Haller, Criminal Defense Attorney, Los Angeles, 1962.

Out, damned spot! out, I say!

The Tragedy of Macbeth

William Shakespeare

The Tragedy of Macbeth

Diana knew it wouldn't be right, but then she told herself that things only looked wrong when there was someone to see you.

Rumors

Anna Godbersen

Rumors

I get up and pace the room, as if I can leave my guilt behind me. But it tracks me as I walk, an ugly shadow made by myself.

I play until my fingers are blue and stiff from the cold, and then I keep on playing. Until I'm lost in the music. Until I am the music--notes and chords, the melody and harmony. It hurts, but it's okay because when I'm the music, I'm not me. Not sad. Not afraid. Not desperate. Not guilty.

Grief    Guilt    Guitars    Harmony    Music    Sad

We are on strike, we, the men of the mind.
We are on strike against self-immolation. We are on strike against the creed of unearned rewards and unrewarded duties. We are on strike against the dogma that the pursuit of one's happiness is evil. We are on strike against the doctrine that life is guilt.

I can learn to live with guilt. I don't care about being good.

Bad    Choices    Good    Guilt    Life

Sometimes I just want to paint the words "It's my fault" across my forehead to save people the time of being pissed off at me.

She looks at the swings, and I can see she’s imagining what they’d look like if the kids weren’t there. The guilt of this holds her down momentarily. It appears to be there constantly. Never far away, despite her love for them.
I realize that nothing belongs to her anymore and she belongs to everything.

Guilt    Life    Love

When you are guilty, it is not your sins you hate but yourself.

Guilt    Sin

It happened. It was awful. You aren't perfect. That's all there is. Don't confuse your grief with guilt.

To show resentment at a reproach is to acknowledge that one may have deserved it.

Abuse    Guilt    Offence

A part of me was hoping someone would wake up and hear, so I wouldn't have to live with this lie anymore. But no one woke up and in the silence that followed, I understood the nature of my new curse: I was going to get away with it.

When she can't bring me to heal with scolding, she bends me to shape with guilt.

Family    Guilt    Women

Let's say that the consensus is that our species, being the higher primates, Homo Sapiens, has been on the planet for at least 100,000 years, maybe more. Francis Collins says maybe 100,000. Richard Dawkins thinks maybe a quarter-of-a-million. I'll take 100,000. In order to be a Christian, you have to believe that for 98,000 years, our species suffered and died, most of its children dying in childbirth, most other people having a life expectancy of about 25 years, dying of their teeth. Famine, struggle, bitterness, war, suffering, misery, all of that for 98,000 years.
Heaven watches this with complete indifference. And then 2000 years ago, thinks 'That's enough of that. It's time to intervene,' and the best way to do this would be by condemning someone to a human sacrifice somewhere in the less literate parts of the Middle East. Don't lets appeal to the Chinese, for example, where people can read and study evidence and have a civilization. Let's go to the desert and have another revelation there. This is nonsense. It can't be believed by a thinking person.
Why am I glad this is the case? To get to the point of the wrongness of Christianity, because I think the teachings of Christianity are immoral. The central one is the most immoral of all, and that is the one of vicarious redemption. You can throw your sins onto somebody else, vulgarly known as scapegoating. In fact, originating as scapegoating in the same area, the same desert. I can pay your debt if I love you. I can serve your term in prison if I love you very much. I can volunteer to do that. I can't take your sins away, because I can't abolish your responsibility, and I shouldn't offer to do so. Your responsibility has to stay with you. There's no vicarious redemption. There very probably, in fact, is no redemption at all. It's just a part of wish-thinking, and I don't think wish-thinking is good for people either.
It even manages to pollute the central question, the word I just employed, the most important word of all: the word love, by making love compulsory, by saying you MUST love. You must love your neighbour as yourself, something you can't actually do. You'll always fall short, so you can always be found guilty. By saying you must love someone who you also must fear. That's to say a supreme being, an eternal father, someone of whom you must be afraid, but you must love him, too. If you fail in this duty, you're again a wretched sinner. This is not mentally or morally or intellectually healthy.
And that brings me to the final objection - I'll condense it, Dr. Orlafsky - which is, this is a totalitarian system. If there was a God who could do these things and demand these things of us, and he was eternal and unchanging, we'd be living under a dictatorship from which there is no appeal, and one that can never change and one that knows our thoughts and can convict us of thought crime, and condemn us to eternal punishment for actions that we are condemned in advance to be taking. All this in the round, and I could say more, it's an excellent thing that we have absolutely no reason to believe any of it to be true.

It is not lies or a lack of loyalty that ends a relationship. It is the agonizing truth that one person feels in their heart on a daily basis. It is realizing that you are coping and not living. It is the false belief that there is a verse, quote, phrase or talk that will magically make you feel content, complete or not care. However, it doesn’t last longer than a few days, before your mind and heart goes back to what it wants. It is the moment you realize that you left without ever leaving. It is the moment you realize that fear, shame or guilt is the only thing standing in the way of the life God meant for you to live.

Battles    Beginnings    Choices    Divorce    Fear    Friendship    Future    God s plan    Guardian angel    Guilt    Knowing    Letting go    Living a lie    Love    Marriage    Pain    Relationships    Shame    Sorrow    Ties

Feel what it's like to truly starve, and I guarantee that you'll forever think twice before wasting food.

If I had known they were going to do this, I would have become a shoemaker.

Destruction    Guilt    History    War

I'm not interested in anybody's guilt. Guilt is a luxury that we can no longer afford. I know you didn't do it, and I didn't do it either, but I am responsible for it because I am a man and a citizen of this country and you are responsible for it, too, for the very same reason... Anyone who is trying to be conscious must begin to dismiss the vocabulary which we've used so long to cover it up, to lie about the way things are.

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