It’s a shame that shame is shamelessly used by the shameless to shame the ashamed!

"Bombs of Shame" cartoon by nakedpastor David Hayward

“Bombs of Shame” cartoon by nakedpastor David Hayward

You can buy a print of this cartoon “Bombs of Shame”, and there is a lot more art there too! SHOP NOW!

Thanks to a Facebook friend who inspired today’s cartoon.

Several people corresponded with me this weekend, and I was alarmed by how much shame is being inflicted on so many people. In fact, there are many leaders who use shame intentional to control people. Then there are others who use it unintentionally for the same reason.

I appreciate Brené Brown’s work on shame. In her post, Teachers, Shame and Worthiness: A Lesson Learned, she says:

When people tell me their organizations or classrooms or churches are ‘shame-free’ it worries me. It means it’s happening and no one is noticing or dealing with it.”

I totally agree. Shame is toxic and kills. It’s happening everywhere. They key is to be aware of it and be diligent in preventing it.

Order my new “The Liberation of Sophia” book! You’re going to love it.

Join our community, The Lasting Supper, where we are diligent about trying to be shame-free and shame-healing.


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9 Responses

  1. I agree. Inspiration and hope work better than shame to inspire people to live a better story. But as with many things done wrong in religion, applying shame is often the quick and cheap way to address something without having to invest much effort or skill.

  2. irreverance says:

    This is a huge issue. Fwiw, here is a great book on how Matthew deals with the issue:

  3. David says:

    Looks good!

  4. kris799 says:

    It’s amazing how ingrained it is in our lives. I really have to work to avoid a shame spiral.

  5. Caryn LeMur says:

    OK…. I admit that I am totally lost on this issue. I do not get it.

    Bullying and manipulation – those I can relate to quickly in a church environment. I have been bullied and manipulated.

    Give me some examples of ‘shaming’, if you will.

  6. Sabio Lantz says:

    @ Caryn,

    I can imagine some shame issues such as:
    Shame on your for: desiring the same sex, masturbating, for wanting a luxury vacation, for disobeying your priest, for questioning the Bible, for reading David Hayward’s blog ….

    They don’t get much worse than the later, of course ! 🙂

    @ David,
    I am just droppin’ in briefly — as I am couchsurfing in Wales with my daughter. The last two nights we stayed with a sculptor (an artist like yourself). You may enjoy looking at one of his pieces here — I think it fits your experience of growth and change.

  7. David says:

    Caryn: Read anything you can google about Brene Brown. She’s an expert to whom I’ll defer.

  8. Melody says:

    Shame is such a big issue for me! It’s nice to be able to recognize it better, so that I can fight it. I’ve always been the ‘good girl’ out of fear and shame, because with even a toe out of line, there’d be shame bombs flying around. It has harmed me quite a bit as I’ve developed a perfectionism/fear of failing that leaves me paralyzed half of the time because of it. So I’m doing everything I can to not let it rule my life so much but it’s hard.

  9. David says:

    Thanks Melody! Yes, it is difficult, but thankfully it can be done!