Free of Guilt

The worst thing one can do when feeling guilty is to do nothing or abandon one’s duty. One day, Emperor Akbar lost the ring his father had gifted him. He asked Birbal to help him find it. Birbal said, “Your Majesty, the ring is here in this court, it is with the courtier who has a straw in his beard.” The guilty courtier immediately moved his hand over his beard. Birbal pointed towards the courtier and said, “Search him.” Akbar didn’t understand how Birbal found the ring. Birbal told Akbar that a guilty person is always scared. All guilt emanates from the mind. It is an emotional warning sign. It robs us of vitality, health and the peace of mind. Guilt upon conscience is like rust upon iron — guilt consumes the guilty. Chronic guilt affects mental health adversely. If guilt is suppressed, it may result in laziness, suspicion and frustration. Scriptures recommend confession and atonement to overcome guilt. How can you rejoice when constantly feeling guilty and condemning yourself?

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