The little boy in me fears punishment, so I have been very good.
Like an obedient robot — one who tightly follows an outwardly imposed order but who has no will of his own — I have followed a rigid path which I saw as good. I have followed my programming, even after my programmer was dead. And I still fear the dark desires of my heart which might lead to corruption or sin.
I was expected to be perfect. I believed I should be — and could be — perfect. I felt shame when I deviated from my script in any way. I felt happy only when I could point to my apparent perfection and say, “Please tell me what a good boy I am!”
I thought everyone who was decent was doing the same thing. Those who weren’t following the same perfect path — or desperately trying to — were bad people. I associated everything good as being of the mind and spirit. The physical desires of the body were bad. Those were the things that took people into sin. My childhood programming and my religious teaching agreed.
The flesh was evil. I had to resist it.
The inner conflict of my life has been between the “good” part of me striving to be without fault and the “bad” part of me which wanted to feed my sinful desires.