The Teaching of Hazrat Inayat Khan

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The word "shame" is used in all different languages, and, more or less, the meaning of the word as understood by different people is the same. But the question what, really, the word "shame" means could be answered by saying that shame means "want." A feeling which one feels in oneself of wanting something to make up one's ideal gives the feeling which one calls shame; or when one sees in another person something wanting, it is that which brings to one's mind that sense of want, and one expresses that sense by the word shame. It is interesting to notice that in the Persian language there is a word, Kham (which can also be pronounced as "shame"), the meaning of which is "foolish," but the true meaning is "wanting."