Your Emotional Debt

On the surface, everyday life has become much more comfortable than ever before. Yet people still lead lives of quiet desperation. The source of this desperation is repression, a sense that you cannot be what you want to be, cannot feel what you want to feel, cannot do what you want to do.

A creator should never be trapped in this way. No authority looms over you to enforce repression; it is entirely self-forced. Any part of yourself that you cannot face puts a barrier between you and reality.

Yet emotions are entirely private. Only you know how you feel, and when you stop censoring your emotions, the effect goes far beyond feeling better. Your aim is not to experience only positive emotions.

We all owe emotional debts to the past, in the form of feelings we couldn’t allow ourselves to express. The past isn’t over as long as these debts go unpaid. You don’t have to return to the person who made you angry or afraid, with the intention of revising how the past turned out. For that person, the impact can never be the same as it is for you.

Every hidden, blocked feeling is like a chunk of frozen consciousness. It is another obstacle between you and the silent witness that must be dissolved. Time and attention have to be paid, sitting with your feelings and letting them say what they have to say.

The purpose of getting rid of emotional debt is to find your place in the present.

Adapted from The Book of Secrets by Deepak Chopra (Harmony Books, 2004).


Emma S.
Emma S4 years ago

'Your aim is not to experience only positive emotions.' When I first read that, I felt a little sad. But, after some thought, I've decided there's something liberating there...

Jane Barton
Jane Barton5 years ago

"The source of this desperation is repression, a sense that you cannot be what you want to be, cannot feel what you want to feel, cannot do what you want to do."

That's because American "society" brainwashes people in fairy tales. They are told as children that they "can be anybody they want to be" and that's a lie. Only a handful of people ever realize their dreams, yet "society" holds out that carrot enticing everybody to
keep dreaming, keep hoping for totally unrealistic goals. First off we are brought up in
superstitious "religions" complete with fairy gods, imaginary "angels" and pie heavens.
This BS gets topped off with Hollywood movies with "happy endings". Dumb people fall for this happy horse manure until they grow up and realize they have been lied to their whole lives. The truth is, you CAN'T be what you want to be, you CAN'T do what you want to do
99% of the time, because you really DON'T have that much CONTROL over your life. It's the RICH PEOPLE WHO RUN THE WORLD WHO CONTROL OUR LIVES. And WE don't OWE any emotional debts to anybody, THEY OWE US, because THEY are the ones who LIED to us. If our OPPRESSORS would not have REPRESSED US, we wouldn't be REPRESSED RIGHT NOW. This is just another article blaming the VICTIM.

J.L. A.
JL A5 years ago

good perspective

Kath R.
Kath P5 years ago

This is the great thing about have to be honest in order for it to work.

Heidi Aubrey
Heidi Aubrey5 years ago


KS Goh
KS Goh6 years ago

Thanks for the article.

Ida J.
Ida J6 years ago

thank you

Robert O.
Robert O6 years ago

I have a huge emotional debt that I hope to "pay down" soon. Carying it around with me has really had a negative impact on my life and general outlook. Thanks.

Franco Di Palma
Franco Di Palma6 years ago

Carry a lot of it if you were born Catholic as I was.

Jessica K.
Jessica K7 years ago

I just went through a situation where I cleared out some emotional debt. I didn't even know I had it, but now that I have gone through the process it is surprising I missed it. A lot of emotional goals I was struggling with seem to take less effort now. I am glad that I was able to dislodge this hidden root, and I recommend this process for anyone.