A moo point, basically …

Arbit/ Random

Guilty as charged

with one comment

Sigmund Freud (R.I.P.) once said that every action and decision of ours is motivated by an all-time state of Horny (with a capital H). People have tried to ridicule, resist, deny and ignore this theory, mainly because it is too scary, too dangerous and expects a lot from mere mortals. Given its all-encompassing nature, the theory is yet to find total acceptance because people are too guilty/ashamed to accept it. This reaction is preempted by the theory too, like a smart-ass kid nodding his head sagely when called a smart-ass. And still, the theory continues to find takers, poking and prodding us into embarrassed contemplation.

All this tiptoeing around taboo topics and hushed discussion of all things ‘bad’ – I’ve always found it a bit too taxing. I’ve long adopted an alternate theory to explain it all – It is Guilt and not our testosterone which drives all actions (‘evil’ or otherwise). Replace every occurrence of the ‘s’ word in Freud’s theory by ‘guilt’, and it continues to make sufficient sense: plus it stops being scary.

Of all the 7 sins, I’ve always found guilt to be the most intriguing one. I remember posting about this a very long time ago, and I also remember boring some folks with a sustained discussion on ‘what constitutes the definition of a good boy’ and ‘A good boy is in fact a very guilty boy’. Diversity of different religions notwithstanding, each religion teaches us one thing for sure – you have to adhere to certain rules and strictures and have to stay in line. This ‘watch your step’ policing is usually achieved through different manifestations of guilt. Guilt that you’ll not enter heaven. Guilt that you’ll be responsible for other people’s pains. Guilt that you don’t love someone or something enough. Guilt that you aren’t trying harder. Guilt at letting others down … (the list is endless, but you get my drift). Most atheists too (and I am seriously scared of atheists just as how I am scared of the unicorn/ spaghetti thingy they worship) are driven by guilt – guilt at being smart enough to question the infinite loopholes in the concept of god but not that smart to explain most things so conveniently explained with the concept of god. But more on religion (or the lack of it) some other time.

Most criminals, they say, are victims of circumstances. Most people believe the whole process of ‘reformation through repentance/penance’ to actually be quite relevant and important. Nevertheless, I’ve always found quite amusing how people are pronounced guilty. Seriously – you can be guilty only if you feel guilty, not because someone said you are guilty :P. I think it’s the society’s way of asserting its might over those who slipped out of the conditioning process – folks who didn’t quite understand that they are supposed to feel guilty before/during/after committing crimes. Most crimes (and the ensuing punishments) have the dual purpose of invoking a sense of guilt in not just the criminal but in the onlookers as well.

I have a lingering suspicion that Freud has already taken care of Guilt by linking it to those overpowering urges it is taboo to talk about. His theory is sufficiently vague to be quite malleable. Of course, my knowledge of Freud is limited to three things – An Introduction to Psychology course I took a few years ago; this (quite nice) book and this song (in increasing order of familiarity), so my opinions are most probably flawed and quite biased. So sue me (ok not really).

I sincerely think, though, that had Freud first impressed upon us the easier-to-accept concept of ‘Guilt is the key‘ and then thrown in a ‘But your cajones are in fact the master key‘, it would had been a much smoother ride. That’s all I really wish to say.

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Written by sujaybedekar

October 1, 2008 at 3:52 am

Posted in arbit, Books, Entertainment, religion

Tagged with , ,

One Response

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  1. Very Impressive 🙂 …

    Chaitali

    October 14, 2008 at 6:19 am


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