WHAT IS SHAME?
HOW IS IT DEFINED?
"Shame is painful, social emotion resulting for comparison of the self's action with the self's standards..."...but which may equally stem from comparison of the self's state of being with the ideal social context's standard.
A subpart of shame...
Shame is a subpart of the fear of disapproval. Those who are fearful of disapproval also exhibit guilt, dependency, are excessively run by what others want or demand, lack of confidence and a myriad of other behaviors or emotions that tend to cause them to behave as if they had no power, were helpless, and are doomed to a life of being unhappily buffeted around by circumstances.
The bottomline for ALL behavior
All behavior of a human is done "so that" we survive (better). (The reason for this lies in understanding how evolution caused that to happen.)
But many of our beliefs and behaviors do not work to achieve better survival. We have simply acquiesced, in most cases, to automatic, thoughtless, unexamined beliefs that do not work AND also cause us to suffer, to have negative emotions, and to lessen our happiness..
The trick lies in first becoming aware of those beliefs and behaviors that don't work, examining and revising them, and then replacing them.
Manifestations of shame
The shame affects consist mostly of blushing, confusion of mind, downward cast eyes, slack posture, and lowered head,
Why have shame?
Shame and its related emotions are very simply the result of socialization by the culture in order to get us to conform to the behaviors that were for the greater good of the (relevant) tribe.
To "enforce" our doing the right thing, the tribe might take away something positive or, at worst, abandon us or toss us out into the jungle to be eaten by wild animals or to starve to death.
Needless to say, it was very effective, as it did help the species survive.
But we also could have simply avoided the bad behavior by cognitive choice.
Instead, it was effective to have us as children trained to build it in to our beliefs (that we would suffer if we did "bad" things). And this training caused us to build into ourselves a "protocol" that included self punishment via chemicals that felt very bad. And soon the system began to work on its own, without anyone questioning what amounted to their decisions when they had the knowledge level of a child.
We are now above the knowledge level of a child, so it is now time to reexamine those beliefs and to stop punishing ourselves and getting no benefit from that punishing - we are only inflicting suffering upon ourselves!!!!