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"/>Resentment - the (true) downside - Ann McMaster M.A., L.P.C.


Resentment – the (true) downside

ResentmentYes, the short-term gratification of resentment seems delicious; except that, beneath my "sniping, sabotaging, self-righteous gloating, not taking responsibility for my own quality of life" is a low-frequency shame that runs beneath the surface of my consciousness. It knows that my acting like a bully, martyr, victim, manipulative spoiled brat is a betrayal of the nobility of my spirit. Even if no one else knows that I secretly pray for bad things to happen to you, I know. 

That knowing erodes my self-respect, integrity, sense of decency, and ability to give and receive love unconditionally. It costs me my own well being; the life goes out of my relationships; personal satisfaction and joy are replaced by vindictive bitterness; My will is ill; and my sacred dreams wither. I’ve unwittingly transformed my lightness of being into darkness and disunion – a spiritual vampire, sucking my wellbeing at the expense of another. It ain’t a pretty picture. And it is an accurate one.

In my resentment, I trade what is good and honorable in myself for the illusion of getting even, while the cost of my resentment is real … giving myself poison, waiting for You to die.

The biggest issue is that resentment is rampant in our society. It’s not only OK socially, it’s systemically encouraged…men vs women, labor vs management, Democrats vs Republicans, rich vs poor – and on it goes. The price we pay for personal and corporate resentment is incalculable – wounded spirits, financial disaster, dis-ease of all kinds. I believe resentment to be THE major player of the reactive mind. In essence it’s about against-ness – war – little, interpersonal wars to economic, global wars. 

Fortunately, there’s a way out.

4 Responses

  1. I don’t really think resentment is about “against-ness” as much as it is about a false belief in separation: that we are all separate bodies vying for scarce resources, be it love, money, time, food, shelter, companionship, intimacy, material wealth etc.
    When the belief that we are separate is dropped (we are all one), it no longer makes sense for one part of that “one-ness” to resent another part. It devolves into self-resentment: resenting qualities in others that I do not want to acknowledge in myself.
    We are not at war with others, but with our Self.
    Resentment IS related to three other qualities (categories) of life shocks (called “upsets” in est parlance, coind by Werner Erhard):
    1. unfulfilled expectations
    2. thwarted intentions
    3. undelivered communications
    It can sometimes help to identify which of the above three is in play in a particular resentment. Each in turn has a internal and an external solution (change the Self or try changing the world).
    Love your blog posts. Always food for thought!

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