Original Sin vs. Innate Goodness

I was raised in a Protestant Christian family, and one of the most harmful beliefs I internalized was that I was inherently sinful. It wasn’t until I studied a bit of Buddhism that I realized how deeply embedded this belief is in our culture. Buddhism teaches that our essence is inherently good, but this goodness gets covered up by layers we build up to protect us from judgements, criticisms, abuse, and/or oppression. We start to internalize these messages, identify with these layers, and lose touch with our inherent worthiness, which this often manifests as a harsh inner critic. Thus, enlightenment is about finding our way back to our inherent goodness.

The truth is, we as humans have an incredible capacity for both goodness and evil, and I wonder how different our world would look if we all believed in each other’s inherent goodness, rather than the concept of “original sin.” I can’t help but think we’ve created a self-fulfilling prophecy where so many of us feel hopeless about the future of humanity.

As a liberation coach, one of my core stances is that people are already whole, and coaching just helps you step further into your wholeness. In other words, *there is nothing wrong with you*, the pain you are experiencing is the results of surviving systems of oppression that dehumanize you in order to exploit you. In order for these systems to work, you have to believe that you are inherently unworthy.

Imagine how differently you would show up in your day-to-day life if you were grounded to your inner sense of worthiness! What would be possible for you?

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