The pain in ‘doing good’

by Anonymous, Australia

As a kid I was totally confused. I grew up in a religious family and we always attended mass. I listened to many sermons that spoke about respect, love, compassion, solidarity, faith and how to treat others. These sermons were conducted by a priest who most of the kids found pretty scary, the words he shared were clearly not what he lived, yet no-one questioned this. My parents were very well respected in the parish community. Everyone told me I had wonderful parents because they helped out and did a lot for the church and were very nice. What I struggled with as a child was that all of these things were spoken about in church yet in day-to-day life people weren’t living loving relationships.

My parents were good people but they had no idea how to show any affection or true love. My mum had a very abusive childhood and was holding these issues which then impacted on all her relationships. She wasn’t coping with her past and so was not able to really connect or have deep relationships with anyone in her adult life. It was saddening to watch how her relationships with her siblings were in constant turmoil and how the family started to break down and family members who were once close refused to have anything to do with each other. As a child I would question her about this and ask why she wasn’t speaking to her sisters. I would question why in church we were told to love our family yet they wouldn’t even speak to each other. She was never able to answer that.

I then grew up with similar issues that I took into adulthood. I didn’t trust anyone and therefore I didn’t develop close relationships with people. If I was hurt, I too would also shut people out of my life and not deal with the issue. I got by and developed a successful career and just accepted that this was how life was to be. That was until I started to have sessions at the Universal Medicine clinic. These sessions supported me to become aware of how I was carrying all my undealt with emotions in everything I did and in all of my interactions. I started to feel how much I was shutting people out and how underneath that I actually did want to connect with people and have loving and supportive relationships. Despite growing up with a strong religious background I had never experienced loving and supportive relationships until this point in my life. The sessions at the Universal Medicine clinic supported me to address issues I had been avoiding and carrying my whole life. I had grown up believing that there was something wrong with me because my mum wasn’t able to love me so I developed many issues from this. With the support of the Universal Medicine practitioners I got to see that there wasn’t anything wrong with me. But I now needed to take responsibility for the choices I had made and I was now in a position to choose what the quality of my life and relationships would be. I now have an amazing life and very deep and loving relationships. I am now able to love my parents and family members in a way that they were never able to show me. At times they find this challenging as they are still holding issues that prevent them from really connecting with others and allowing loving relationships.

My parents are now more heavily involved in the church and are still considered very respected members of the community. They often go on overseas missionary trips to help out in underprivileged countries. However they still continue to struggle in their personal relationships and marriage. These missionary trips to help others can be used to mask their own issues for a while but when they return the ‘good’ feeling from helping others doesn’t last and they are quickly planning their next trip to avoid feeling their own pain and hurt that they carry. In the moments when my mum does stop, she will ask what I am doing differently and she expresses that she does want contact with her family. She has shared that she doesn’t want to face how she has been with them so for now she continues to use other ways to not deal with this. I do ponder on what is the real quality of what she is doing in these other countries, if she is not able to love herself and those she lives with, then how can love be expressed in what she does? This is not a judgment on her, I love her but I also see the pain she carries daily and how her religious faith has allowed this to stay as long as she is seen to be doing good.

220 thoughts on “The pain in ‘doing good’

  1. “I love her but I also see the pain she carries daily and how her religious faith has allowed this to stay as long as she is seen to be doing good.” What makes ‘doing good’ so evil is that superficially it appears so beneficial and loving when, in fact, it suppresses self-love – the foundation upon which true love is built. How can you love another if you have not first developed love for one self?

  2. We are taught from young to be good, and also to do good, a good deed for another and as we often get rewarded for doing good we learn quite quickly that this is what is expected of us, yet at what cost to ourselves and to the rest of humanity.

  3. ‘Doing good’ is truly painful and brings recognition if we are not loving ourselves. Most of us have not been taught to love ourselves first and fall (at least I did) for recognition at a young age and we start to measure, override what we feel inside. The truth is it takes us away from who we truly are. And we avoid to accept and live the power of love that, we definitely all know, is in our body.

    1. Yes, I can relate to this Annelies – measuring and overriding what we feel as children, is a very rocky foundation for our adult years, usually resulting in living with emotions and buried hurts that colour the way of viewing life and living in a protective and irresponsible way which gets passed on to the next generation. A very vicious cycle.

  4. For a long time I thought I could get away with just being good – not bothering to go deep into my heart and be open. How wrong was I. You can be and do so good and life would still remain very thirsty.

  5. Now that I have an understanding around the harm ‘doing good’ does to both myself and those I’m perceived to be doing good for, I’m far more aware of when I go into the drive of wanting to be seen doing the right thing for the sake of recognition. It’s awful. It’s not true and it serves no purpose.

  6. You raise some very important points Anonymous, one of those being that we do not ever leave unresolved hurts from the past behind, and not only that, they are present in the quality of interaction we have with every other person, until such time as they are dealt with and let go. Questioning what it is we bring to another in the attempts to ‘help’ is very valid in light of this… and something that is currently ignored in the helping professions and charitable arenas.

  7. Why is there such a need for us to fall into the doing good, which can also confirm another’s lack of responsibility, would it not be more productive if we learn to connect to ourselves and feel into the truth of something first.

  8. This is a great point you share here as you highlight the illusion of ‘doing good’ and how it gives you a false sense of feeling good, a sense that is not ever true and long lasting. Our greatest fulfilment is found in letting go of our hurts and living in truth in connection to who we are within. As then whatever we do is through a quality of true self-love that never imposes on another or needs to be sought after, as it is already lived and shared as such.

  9. This got me thinking about my younger years attending church and all of the associated church activities. It’s interesting to consider that in being ‘good’ was how we repented for any of our sins and if we weren’t ‘good’ then we were most likely heading for the ‘pits of hell’. It’s a great tactic to control people really, but then at the same time there is making a choice of being controlled by the beliefs and rules of the church.

  10. I am not surprised that you grew up feeling very confused. Listening to sermons preached by someone who doesn’t live what they talk is a formula for confusing all who listen. This is also a great example of how one person not dealing with their hurts causes harm to ripple out to all they interact with, who consequently in turn have their hurts that they don’t deal with and so they cause harm to all they also interact with and so it goes on generation after generation and spreading the harm far and wide.

  11. Dealing with our emotional and other issues (i.e. our “stuff”) is so essential and not just for ourselves but for everyone we come into contact with. I have met many people who use religion in a way that covers over issues, but any kind of band-aid means the issues unfortunately continue to fester and impact our quality of life – no matter how pious or “good” we may be. Getting free of our issues and returning to the essence of love we all innately are within is ironically the way back to God. Religion is that inner connection.

  12. “Doing Good” we have been told is a way to our own salvation, but as we so often find out in our own lives this isn’t the case at all. Unless we are coming from a true connection to our heart we are draining ourselves physically and not helping at all. It just looks good on the surface as you mentioned.

  13. I see the burying we all do with issues we are not ready to address. This burying allows things to fester and then colours the way we look at situations. Being in activity all the time makes the tension of not dealing with the past so much easier but, from experience, the body breaks down. It is not built to live in multiple moments which is what we are doing when we leave multiple hurts undealt with. Burying issues never solves them.

  14. Our body is often the marker for honesty about things we have buried, issues we are avoiding. I have found that pain and difficulty are some of the most humbling experiences and bring a level of honesty that we don’t seem to want to connect to at other times. Escaping and not stopping to feel are just as much of a coping mechanism as alcohol and drugs, but everyone will come to this when they are ready and, in my experience, not before.

  15. All my life I had felt that there was something wrong in the doing good that I saw around me but I could not put my finger on what. I just knew I didn’t want to enjoin it myself. Then I heard Serge Benhayon’s teachings and amongst all the beautiful wisdom was the fact that the greatest evil is to be found in good. Suddenly I realised what I had always had such strong reservations about the do gooding. There are a couple of audios that explain this on this awesome Unimedpedia page http://www.unimedliving.com/unimedpedia/word-index/unimedpedia-evil.html

  16. To hide the fact we are not living the quality of love that we know we can we focus on doing good in the vain attempt to compensate for the lack and the emptiness that we feel – completely closed off to the fact that the love we crave and want so much actually initiates from within if only we connect to it.

  17. What is even more exposing is when there are challenges within the family and instead of reacting by escaping and staying away from them they see the good in keeping the relationships together but not by dealing with what is going on within them, their hurts and held pictures and ideals but by living from beliefs that they have to keep the family together because the bible says it is a Christian way of being. Being good is sneaky, clever and cunning and the more I expose this way of being within myself the more I see this behaviour being played out in another.

  18. Religion in how it’s often practiced can be used as a mask to avoid our hurts and can even keep us in the comfort of those hurts, so we walk about in the world with protection keeping all others out; the fallacy with this is laid bare here, we cannot do ‘good’ if we’re not addressing our hurts as we are just using that ‘good’ as relief and a way to avoid dealing with our issues … the truth is we need to address those hurts and allow ourselves to open up to ourselves and all others and then we bring quality into all our endeavours.

  19. Expressing love in its true form can disturb and make another feel uncomfortable especially when they hold and are attached to beliefs on what the word love means to them. But it is not a battle between who thinks what love is but living in a way that is true to ourselves.

  20. Children are so aware of everything through their 6th sense of clairsentience and thus feel the truth of everything that is going on around them. To have an adult speaking one thing and living in a very different way is not only confusing, but breeds a deep mistrust of people.
    “I listened to many sermons that spoke about respect, love, compassion, solidarity, faith and how to treat others. These sermons were conducted by a priest who most of the kids found pretty scary, the words he shared were clearly not what he lived, yet no-one questioned this”.

  21. We learn to be good and do good but deep down inside we feel deep compassion and immense care for each other that does not need to be learned but given the space and permission to be expressed so we can embrace and live it as the natural part of us that it is.

  22. Not just taught to be good, but rewarded for being good…. and so we shape ourselves to achieve the maximum recognition from the cot, right through school and our working lives, through to the grave. But that is generally configured to a system.. a system in this life that is struggling and not working. We desperately need alternatives, and Universal Medicine definitely achieves that.

  23. It has been my experience that so many people live their lives in protection and with a wall up to everyone else because of undealt with hurts from their past – I know I have lived like this too. Having an ideal way of living as many religions do does not deal with these hurts, in fact it can make them worse because you then feel unable to live up to the ideal that is being portrayed and so add on another layer of hurt. Universal Medicine has supported me 100% to look at, explore and heal many of my hurts in an extremely supportive, genuine, safe, authentic and consistent environment which is pretty awesome I must say.

  24. This is one of the really sad teachings of the church concerning what is considered to be a loving and caring life of giving to others for our salvation. As we have learnt from the teachings of The Ageless Wisdom by Serge Benhayon we first must learn to love ourselves. A really big lesson!

  25. Reading this today what stands out is the separation and the compartmentalising life. What came first is like the chicken or the egg, if one lives their life in separation of themselves and others is that then what is reflected in the church or is it the separation reflected in the church then what is acted out in their personal life? In either way it all comes down to choice.

  26. I can share with you Anon, that it is questionable what the doing good is bringing to our societies and the countries we think are in need. If the doing good is not from love that is being lived in all aspects of our lives, but instead just a way to escape and feel good about ourselves, for sure that what will be delivered through this good will actually be void of the love that brings true good to this world.

  27. Gosh, there is so much to expose here. It’s a big deal to openly say that ‘doing good’ can often be doing a hell of a lot of harm. It’s interesting how fearful we are of simply being vulnerable and expressing that we don’t feel ok in ourselves…and instead put a bandaid over it and keep going on. All that does is perpetuate a cycle that no one benefits from.

  28. Doing good is another go-to, no different to the many other medications we have available to us, to distract us from going deeper within ourselves and healing the wounds we have that prevent us from opening up to true love. At least with the likes of drug-taking and alcohol binging it’s obvious what is being chosen – reckless behaviour that takes one deeper into their own self-destruction, whereas with the likes of charity and ‘doing good’, there is the thick illusion of being benevolent and caring, while in actual fact it is just the same escape route from dealing with the realities of life – but much more insidious because of the enormous pretence. People hide in the illusion of charity and the damage this causes is massive – something society has not yet considered and does not want to consider.

  29. When life is based on images, what does not fit the picture is lived with anguish and when the hold of the pictures is that strong, you cannot communicate openly about it. It crushes you twice. As a result, you learn to live up to the images until you say, enough.

  30. Doing good can be a very effective cover up for not living the truth of what we know inside in our day to day life. That absence leaves an emptiness which we then seek to remedy by trying to do to others what we don’t do for ourselves; but, as you say, what quality does it come with?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s