I take no credit for this post because the original author Teal Scott was the one who brought it up. I have included a link at the end of this write up to the article. I just felt like this was so relevant to our daily lives here, and most of what I am driving at so much so that I had to summarize what she wrote and put in into the context of what this blog was all about.
Lets begin with the definition of what a “Scapegoat” is. According to Teal, “a scapegoat is an individual or group of people that are singled out for unmerited negative treatment or blame.” Thus the prevalent belief of: “I need to take on blame and take on guilt to be good”. In a family situation, “the scapegoat takes on the emotional burden of the family dysfunction and identifies with being “a problem” so that they can at least be seen as good because of their guilt.”
According to Teal, “A townsman is a person who is so resistant to his or her own feelings and thoughts, as well as so afraid to face their own dysfunction that they focus on the problems of others. They are reactive people who project their unhealed issues onto other people… usually one “problem person” in their lives.” She further goes on to say that “if you are a townsman, it is time to be brave enough to own up to your own ‘dysfunction’ and admit to your projections when you make them. It is time to take responsibility for the things you think may be “wrong about you”. It is time to stop focusing on other people’s problems and instead, to focus on your own.”
Regardless of which of the aforementioned that we identify ourselves with, one thing is very clear to me. Both are born out of the “I am not worthy”, and “I want to be loved” mentality. “I am not worthy of love, therefore I must…. ” do something to make myself feel like I am worthy to be loved, by others, and by myself. The question here is does any of us actually need some form of justification to love ourselves? Or, does any of us need empirical proof that I am not a waste of space on earth, and that I am worthy of my weight in gold?
The scapegoat wants to be loved, but does not feel worthy of receiving any until he/she takes on the blame of guilt, so that he/she may feel that now I can feel good about myself and deserves the love. The townsman feels that in order to receive love, he has to be flawless and perfect. Honestly, the only being that is flawless and perfect is God. None of us are flawless and perfect, but we all still deserve to be loved for all the good in us, as well as our flaws. Archaic patterns/models of behavior ingrained into us while we are growing up, its a learned behavioral pattern. Do you want this to continue?
Teal’s article can be found here : http://blog.thespiritualcatalyst.com/scapegoat-or-townsman/