Those of us who have been on a path of healing the wounded aspects of ourselves know that one of the characteristics we often suffer from when we are in a wounded, fearful ego state is that we feel either superior or inferior to others. Because the wounded part of us is based on the core shame beliefs that we are inadequate, flawed, defective, unimportant, and so on, we may feel deeply one-down to others. In order to compensate for these difficult feelings and protect against feeling them, we may deny their existence and move into the opposite position: I am better than others.

This position can take many forms:

  • I am better than others because I have more money.
  • I am better than others because I am thinner, sexier, prettier or more handsome.
  • I am better than others because I have a better car.
  • I am better than women because I am a man, or I am better than men because I am a woman.
  • I am better than homosexuals because I am heterosexual.

Racism comes into the picture when the false beliefs about being one-up extend to race and religion:

  • I am better than Blacks, Asians and Latinos because I am White, or, as is rapidly becoming the case, I am better than Whites because I am Black, Asian, or Latino.
  • I am better than Jews, Buddhists, Hindus and Muslims because I am Christian, or I am better than Christians because I am a Jew, Buddhist, and so on.

All of these false beliefs of the wounded aspect of ourselves stem from fear and a deep desire to have control over not feeling the fear. Hate and the resulting violence are always protections against feeling the fear of believing, in a deep, unconscious place within the wounded self, that we are unworthy.

The way I see it, racists are waving a large flag that says: “I feel deeply inadequate, insecure, fearful, flawed. I am terrified of anyone knowing about these feelings, so I will hide them by pretending to be better than others. This will protect me from ever having to feel how defective I really feel.” Hitler, with his highly abusive background and his deep self-hatred for the small part of himself that was Jewish, illustrates the extreme of what I am talking about.

The problems of racism and violence will not be resolved until:

  1. Our child-rearing practices change to produce people with high self-esteem instead of deep core shame.
  2. Adults commit to their inner healing work which involves healing the wounded aspects of themselves that resort to hate and violence when threatened.

It is necessary for each individual to practice a healing process on a daily basis, such as the one that I teach called Inner Bonding (see resources below for a free course), so that gradually the fears and false beliefs of the wounded self are healed and replaced by the truth: that we are all children of God, equal in the eyes of God. When we heal our wounded selves, we will feel our oneness with all living beings, and would never think of harming another person. When we know ourselves to be the love that is God, we will see and feel that love within each person we meet, regardless of what they look like on the outside. When we learn to love our own soul – our own individual expression of Spirit – we will naturally love the souls of others.

Margaret Paul, Ph.D. is the best-selling author and co-author of eight books, including “Do I Have To Give Up Me To Be Loved By You?”, “Do I Have To Give Up Me To Be Loved By My Kids?”, “Healing Your Aloneness”, “Inner Bonding”, and “Do I Have To Give Up Me To Be Loved By God?” Visit her web site for a FREE Inner Bonding course: or