P1 However, the most important substance of spiritual food is self-development. The right kind of shame is true repentance.
P2 your lack of self-respect is not due to your faults, weaknesses, shortcomings, and sins—no matter what they may be—but it is due to your wrong kind of shame. The moment you exchange the wrong shame for the right, I can promise you that in the measure this change takes place, you must develop true and justified self-respect long before the faults in you have disappeared. You do not have to be perfect in order to respect yourself.
All you have to do is to adopt a realistic and constructive attitude toward your imperfections. The more your self-respect is established, the less you will crave for the respect of others, for you are then resting secure within yourself. Perhaps it has not occurred to you that the wrong kind of shame comes from your pride and furthers your pride even more.
P3 So the wrong kind of shame means pride, laziness, injustice, and escape from your present reality. Because of your pride and your need for respect and love from others, you begin to withdraw from what you really think and feel about yourself and hide it behind a wall, so to speak. You dare not stand up for who you really are because your emotions say that if you were yourself, you would be despised. So you create a mask self.
In some subtle way, you become a fake. As long as you feel sad, bitter, defiant, or disharmonious in any way when you encounter your faults, you have not yet accepted yourself as you are. No matter how incapable of love the people around you may be, you would never feel lonely if this wrong attitude were not somehow prevailing within you.
P4 All you have to do is delve into your emotions and, as I so often say, translate them into clear cut concise thoughts. You will learn the right kind of shame and self-acceptance, which brings humility, overcomes pride, and shows you how to live in your own reality.
P5 For as long as you despair so easily, there is too much pride in you, and then the healing, curative action of being able to observe your own weaknesses in the true light of what they are, neither exaggerating nor diminishing them, will not be able to affect your soul.
P6 And God’s helpers who are all around you constantly manage to guide and inspire people to create situations which afford you the opportunity.
P7 As you go through your list, you will see that there are some faults you really do not like and others you cherish in some way. Then, when you feel that attachment, ask yourself: “How would I react if another person were to display the same fault either in the same way or perhaps in a slightly different way?” You are actually often quite irritated when another human being displays the same fault you are somewhat proud of in yourself.
I will also point out what the underlying good quality behind each fault is, for there is no fault that is not a distortion of something good and pure.
—The Pathwork® Guide