Ramping down

Take that world of your shoulders.

The weight will slowly bend your spine and one day you will not be able to walk. I thought I was warrior enough to bear it once, but now I just write songs about those warriors. Maybe this is all I will ever be able to do again.

After experiencing the excitement of a few days on the front (even only tentatively) it all came flooding back. Frazzled circuits never fixed themselves properly, flashbacks of tents and loud noises. The effect of endless hours of people talking about all the world’s biggest problems – I may never be well enough to hear that again.

Dropping the burden, ramping down my involvement, already I feel safer and more secure.

If you were fully sensitive to the world’s pain the psychic feedback would explode the mind. No one is strong enough to take on the totality. With this as the high end of the scale and total ignorance at the other end, we find ourselves somewhere along the spectrum. Finding a safe and healthy place on that spectrum depends on each and every individual.  Some people can handle it, others can’t. Some are secure enough to go months in a vulnerable state, others do not have the support or luxury. Some have a history of trauma and a un-privileged status in society, others have solid limbic systems never frazzled by violence and privilege flows through their veins. We all have different needs and abilities.

If you look to see how long the journey is, you might never make it. But if you travel with your head down, there is a chance you can get there.

To be sensitive in this world is to suffer what it suffers. And when society has hostile elements in it, people striving to use you and trample you down, people competing with you, endless expectations of action and ‘productivity’, to take on the big problems and those smaller abuses is a double-drain of energy.

That is why my anxiety brings me to a crippling halt. Not all of us can be warriors all the time. I might never again be a front-liner, this is a reality to live with.

To confront this is itself a massive anxiety. More so if the struggle is your life. But fortunately for myself I can contribute from behind the front lines, daring the trenches of change only to raise spirits and then disappear again. I can still contribute in other, roundabout ways, and perhaps have the strength to fight the pettier demons who constantly try to harass me.

But I have trust and faith in the generation coming up and in those with greater resilience for battle and its anxieties. It is easy to let the burden go, there is a whole legion of brave activists coming forward to fight.

To be an artist and a thinker is my place in this struggle; to want to change things but only to perceive them from the clouds, or at best from the corner of my eye.

Advertisements

Trusting the world

I once saw the most intriguing insect crawling along the ridge of a bench. It was a creature which reached out with its head, forming an arch, then brought the rest of its body forward, lurching forward pace by pace.

It was young, tiny, new, full of vigour and curiosity for the world. I held out my bag to offer the creature a safer place to crawl upon. It rose up on its ‘haunches’, making a half-arch with its tiny body, reaching up and out to the new surface, buffeted by the wind and tugged upon by gravity. It hung there for a while, ‘sniffing’ out what must have appeared another vast plane of existence.

It would all be so far beyond its tiny comprehension, where it was, where it might be going, what I was, what my intentions were. This creature had no defences, no knowledge but its survival instincts, no obvious direction, no solidarity with its clan. All it could do was trust and drive itself forth. Reaching up, hanging there, it made some kind of ‘decision’ and latched onto the bag, bringing the rest of its body with it.

If beings of greater time-span and superior mind exist in the cosmos, I should imagine we are would appear much the same. With our tiny scope for perception we must always have to trust the world and trust ourselves.

States of Being

Premise: We all perceive the same world, yet do not come to the same conclusions.

States of being can answer the question as to why some people care about the world and others do not. The fundamental anxiety which drives us to change, the evolution through crisis, is not felt equally in all people. Not even within oneself is anxiety at a constant.

For instance, think of noise pollution. A person does not have a set limit of what they can take before anxiety kicks in. At present I am extremely sensitive to noise. A man shouting in the night will make my fight or flight systems activate. At its worst extremes, mice scratching in the skirting board would have me woken up in a cold sweat! How much sound effects me is not just a matter of how loud or piercing it is, but what my current state is; how well that state can cope with the world.

It is entirely subjective how much we can take. Certain things can be done to help deal with perceived threats – mindfulness can slow down your system and lower anxiety, as can medication or natural remedies. But what can change the fact that your state of being is just deeply sensitive? What can alter you from a state of constantly feeling hurt and triggered, reliving trauma again and again, to a more stoic state where you can just survive the world? Tomorrow it might just happen. In a few hours energy might return. We can take steps towards these things, but I believe there will always be some element of mystery to the complex equation of these states.

It seems like some people are more sensitive than others. There are some, perhaps who do not feel much anxiety, who do not seem to mind too much that our species could annihilate itself. Is it because they are cut off from their own repressed emotions, and survive through ignorant numbness? Do they simply direct their negative emotions outwards onto others and thus escape extremes of their own suffering? Is their morality and core beliefs simply far lower in ambition and thus much less caring?

At the core of our characters we all have our own life-myth or narrative. Could it be that Janet X knows things are bad at the back of her mind, but the immediate life-myth of working in the system gives her the routine-strength needed to endure? I think the answer to all the last four questions is ‘yes’.

The drug of work and ignorance keeps the state of being relatively stable, relatively enduring. It is an unsatisfying, but certain, way to live.

I think that because my routine has fallen apart there is no structure to my amorphous state, so sensitivity is increased as a result. And with increased sensitivity comes increased anxiety and increased anxiety means insomnia, vulnerability, tiredness and so forth. My state of being is partially a result of this choice to engage with the darker aspects of the world. But by fully perceiving problems in the world and in the self, the ability to challenge them or triumph against them diminishes.

Perhaps it is true that the only way we can win against the destructive giant on the horizon is to keep our head behind our shield as we approach him, to sometimes ally with his slave-legions and sometimes to fight them, to cross dangerous bridges and make dark pacts with fell powers to reach our noble ends.

I am standing atop a mountain with a clear view out to the monster which destroys all that is good. I feel my feet on the stone and know of the deep roots of that mountain, all the pain and sadness that is within it, and I give those feelings expression. It is a dual-doom. No wonder my state of being is so shaken and the task seems so monumental.

But sometimes, just sometimes, I feel we need to put our head above the clouds and our feet need to become roots which delve into the earth. If we had never dared this, how would we know there is a problem to deal with in the first place? This vulnerable, sensitive state of being is the reason why I am able to know what is wrong in the first place; to truly care for myself and others. It costs the soul much energy to go to that dark place, but it also frees up trapped energy.

This anxiety is an adaptive tool of evolution, it alone is what will pull us through. Better to suffer it with the promise of transformation than to live in ignorance and folly.

The dark guide I call anxiety

Believe me anxiety, I know things are fucked up!

I don’t need you flaring up and giving me nights punctuated by restless hours, shakes and thrashing. You will anyway, its your function to always be on, but sometimes it is hammering home a point already made.

Never mind.

Anxiety will drive me forward and forward. Have you ever thought what it would mean to turn off anxiety? For me it would be to die.

My anxiety is triggered by every act of disrespect I feel. To turn it off is to stop desiring respect for myself. My anxiety is aware, at background level, that I do not own a safe place of my own; that there isn’t really one out there in the capitalist world. To turn that anxiety off would be to also turn off the values that desire safety and dignity.

Anxiety can make you appear a wreck – colour drained from the face, black-rimed weary eyes signalling nights of turmoil. But without anxiety, herald of deep dignity, we are dead anyway. I do not speak of the wrong kind of anxiety – neurotic desire for perfection, misunderstanding of human nature, denial of entropy in our bodies. I speak here of anxiety the dark guide, the eternal mentor that pushes us into better places and cracks the whip when we ‘underachieve’; the thing that makes us struggle endlessly even if it hurts us so, the thing that detects the foe in the powers that wish to drain us, the thing that never lets complacency rear its pink snout without a fight! Complacency is death!

I have spent two years doing – by most people’s standards – very little indeed. I can easily forgive myself these necessary weaknesses, feel no guilt for being inactive in the leviathan-machine. A lot of that was necessary healing time, overcoming panic disorders, a lot of working-shit-out time, a lot of incredibly fruitful endeavour. Now it is like lying in bed after the worst of the illness has passed. If I stayed here good things will still sometimes happen, life would have rays of authenticity and excitement, but less often than I would desire. This isn’t purpose, these attachments aren’t anything but insecure. Caution is wise, over caution is not.

I know that I am bending over backwards to accommodate a partially-inauthentic life. Meditation, anxiolytic oils and valerian tincture for sleep – this is like suppressing the real drive to evolve to the next stage. The things we use to cope in the wrong circumstances can keep us in the wrong circumstances if we do not see them for what they are. In the long-term, we are better off falling and trusting the world to catch us. Then we can see what we are truly made of.

For how much energy we have to cope in the world depends on what we wish to achieve. If you hide in a box room with your gran, your energy will be lessened by your situation. If you stay in the placid lake forever, your body will never need to fill you with energy, your heroism and courage will never grow. Malicious forces will grow everywhere else and eventually come for you. Safety is not the safe option – it is a slow death.

This is why therapy also had to cease. It was like an addiction, a place to be psychically cuddled by a benevolent god. It made me much more powerful, digging up vulnerabilities and learning who I was at the deepest level. But therapy was keeping me here, tied to a plane of existence I know can no longer sustain itself or me. Now I am without it I am tested, and it is always there to return to if the need calls it.

The time is coming when I must stop trying to avoid anxiety and let it do its thing. To get me into the next phase. It succeeded last time, in a jagged and messy way, a terrifying way for someone who did not know themselves. This time I predict a much smoother and mutual process. It won’t be taking me to some magic, safe-place.

I do not want to retreat the peaceful hills or some far-flung shire and live out days in tranquillity. It is not only a denial of instincts – the cut and thrust of life, competition and challenge, striving and defiance. There is simply no real safety there, even if it was an option. Such a life of retreat is a negation of our responsibility to the world and other tribes of humanity. It is like retreating to the centre of an ever-shrinking island; when it comes to your time to be swallowed by the waves there will be no one left to save you but individualistic, New Age hermits whose spiritual bypassing let the merchants of disaster destroy civilization. They will keep retreating until there is nothing left to retreat into, a final act of pay-what-you-can yoga on the final mountain of submerged earth before oblivion finds them!

No – I know security comes by stepping into the heart of power, the eye of the storm, drawing the spiritual sword on the front lines. When you know you are strong enough and ready, taking action. Going forward, daring to step into the shadow of a giant and challenging him, this is how you befriend your anxiety and ensure the safety of yourself and your tribe. This means a life of near-constant struggle, conflict, tension, wounding. This means that peace is a chapter which will always be followed by some kind of conflict. Let it be – I know that I could not have it any other way and would rather die than be domesticated and watch the world and its tribes I admire be slowly poisoned to death, scorched or drowned.

We think and feel so our energy is tried, and we can feel weak. But it is precisely because we think and feel that we have something to fight for, and our morale cannot be broken for long. We are more powerful than we think, even with this anxiety, or rather, precisely because of it. It is the herald of our dignity and everything we want to see in the world.

When we eventually win the fight to evolve from our disastrous capitalist path, anxiety will have done much to save us. But it will not turn off; we will find no permanent rest. New challenges we cannot see from our current perspective will emerge, and anxiety again shall be at our side to protect us.

Black Bard

The halls I fill with joy and mirth

Deceive the fact of a doomed birth

Black from abuse, black from neglect

Leaving a soul without self-worth

A man of no presence, whose shadow casts

Nothing, and no achievement lasts

In him, a man no maiden lusts

For she seeks one of strength and trust

I create for you, cry and reach out

A tiny candle soon to be snuffed out

But you see not what is hidden deep

So these drugs alone, might give me sleep.

 

My power flows from endless spring

Yet the source is ever-darkening

The dryads song, the dryads muse

Cannot dispel these ghosts haunting

My every step, my every way

Darkness shrouds the brightest day

Pain and tears cannot be spoke

So keep this soul in its black yoke

For verse is not life, nor barded song

Love and respect, alone we long

And those denied, this simple prize

Live and die with sorrow in their eyes.

Root causes & Gravitational forces

In this quest for deep self-knowledge there is always a strong element of cause and effect, stretching back to a primal and fundamental time. I believe this is an inevitable paradigm into which we work as human beings, at least by default. We see only our perception, and time seems linear as a result of it. The hand carries the stone, the hand drops it, the stone falls. The hand dropping is the cause and the stone falling effect. Something causes the hand to drop and so forth back to the ‘beginning of time’.

With deep psychological matters such as personality and trauma, we could use a similar linear understanding in the analogy of a tree: the deep roots ae the fundamental essence of our being, the trunk and the branches more conscious forms. ‘Most people only ever live at the surface. They might prune the branches or support the trunk but they never change things at the roots. And it is precisely at the roots where we must change things. the roots are the ultimate cause.’

I think it is a useful analogy. I also fear that ‘roots and depths’ might be the wrong way to look at things outside of simple analogy. That we might be caught floating in a clusterfuck of forces the understanding of which is very difficult.

Contrast the cause and effect, linear progression of roots and trees with an analogy about gravitational forces.

The are two bodies of matter floating in space: A and B. A has an effect on B and simultaneously B has an effect on A. It doesn’t make sense to say A causes B without knowing how B also causes A. The relation is simultaneous. One may have a greater effect than the other (if B is larger for instance) but still A is still a cause. When we introduce C, to understand the effect A has on B, we must also understand the effect C has on A. And of course, A is simultaneously altering the outcomes of C. A has an effect on B and C, B on C and A, C on A and B. This varies and changes as they move around each other. This is just three forces and already the causes and effects are multiplying exponentially.

When we add D, E, F and G, we start to get close to something of complexity. How can we even begin to understand A’s effect on anything without a decent understanding of B, C, D, E, F and G, how they all effect and alter one another? The order between them, the power of each element is not within itself. The ability of it to effect another body is dependent on its location and the other forces in question. There is no inherent power of force in any element, but only a relational power. Which is significant, which less so? Each effect has many causes and each cause causes many effects! The ‘order’ which emerges out of this interplay is extremely difficult to comprehend.

How this non-linear analogy might aid me psychologically is to dispel the idealization of catharsis or total healing. ‘If only that one great poisoned root was torn out’ or ‘if only I could find the line of causality that caused this’. There will always be greater and lesser causes and it does make sense that the traumatized being will remember most prominently the most powerful. But one is not only caused upon but also part of causation, even if it does not feel that way. If I see myself as a force in motion in the cosmos, then I was never wholly helpless or formed from without, but also played a part in the relationship which brought me here (however small my part may have been and perhaps it was larger than I thought).

I am not helpless and I am not determined by only a few major events. I am as much a part of things as anything else. It is narrow thinking – and more fundamental still the paradigm within which we think! – that is exacerbating things and trammelling me into a certain fixed mode. In fact my agency only makes sense in this relation to others. My thriving is not dependent upon achieving one or two great things; a defining moment, the resolution of primal dreams, the supreme love. It is ongoing and unreachable, like a receding horizon. It will change when the tides do, and they will. How much I can do and can be is limited but also given meaning by the conflux of many, many things upon which I and all beings are mutually dependent.

From one to many.

No single soul but a thousand.

No centre-mind but a hollow circle.

The engine of life is what is before it.

The cosmos needed no creator and time needed no winding up by the hand of god. If we seek back for primal causes we may miss that we are occurring within one as we speak.

But I love the analogy of the tree, the language of roots, the seeking for primal depths. Maybe if the tree is one of many, and we consider the soil and the touching roots, and the quality of the air, and the animals in its branches…

Pieces of a puzzle

A man of great knowledge may have a hundred pieces to the puzzle. Yet so obsessed is he with growing his hoard of knowledge that he is only focused on attaining more. He keeps his pieces piled high somewhere safe and prides himself on his collection. It shows everyone else how learned he is. Sometimes he takes out a piece of a puzzle and marvels at it, then returns it to the disordered jumble in his vaults.

A man of great wisdom has spent more time thinking about the connection between things, about the whole. He has only found twenty pieces to the puzzle. Yet he can attain greater truth than the man with a hundred pieces. For the wise one can lay out the few pieces he has – perhaps all of the edge pieces, or a significant portion of one part of the puzzle. Through reason he can try to fill in the gaps, make educated guesses, find some kind of direction, deduce what is missing. Whatever happens, the wise man has not been blinded to the wood by the trees. Despite having less pieces he knows more about the truth by his abilities of intuition, the making of connections, inferences and imaginations. Empiricism is a vital part of his truth, but it is only an aid to a deeper form of understanding.

So much for the value of sheer accumulation of knowledge in discovering truth. A man could have the totality of the universe at his finger tips and yet never put it together in a meaningful way.

Retarded Growth

It is early Spring and the elder trees are daring to emerge with new leaves. Shrubs and hedges are putting out their babies to reach for the newly emerging sun. Songbirds are swooping into the garden, blessing the world with their existence. Life promises to grow, the Winter is ending.

I should be free from frustration, but quite the opposite! The growth of everything else is reminding of my retarded growth and that of those around me.

We should be free to express, to spread our arms far and wide, to let go of troubles and cease counting how much grain is left over Winter. Instead, we have school kids forced to take responsibility for a climate catastrophe they played no part in. The young generation is rising up to make up for the mistakes of the older. It is a burden they have the vigour to bear, yet I cannot help but be saddened by the recent youth climate march and school strike. It is great that they are mobilizing at such a young age, but why should they have to? They are young, life should be theirs to enjoy, property and prosperity should be their promise – not a life time of struggling against corpses which cling on to power.

I have seen the effects of fighting the system and constant swimming against the tide on myself. Of course, in my day, we were outcasts and vagabonds, ridiculed or ignored for our refusal to enter the machine. For the pioneers such action is always going to be harder – the youth should win more acclaim for their actions. Now it is common knowledge how fucked-up it is; we just need the political will to change things. But the toll has been paid by my body and soul. My growth has been retarded for most, if not all of my life.

I wish all the power of Spring to the rising generation. I have no resentment toward them – that would a conservative position of futility. But anger toward the great retarder; the one who blots out the sun and casts shade, the one who withholds compost and plant feed, the one who squeezes us into small pots which he always threatens to take away, the one who rarely bothers to pick up a watering can, the one who poisons the soil and drains our bodies of vigour, the one who picks our fruit when it is time to harvest but couldn’t care less when we are unproductive – my anger for this broken system and its retarding agents is strong. Perhaps it is my only real vigour outside of the arts!

Or perhaps a late bloomer can still grow into something beautiful. My new maxim is ‘depleted but never defeated’. Cut down but never pulled out at the roots. Spring is here and here we go again. We are on the cusp of Brexit madness, a buckling system, upheaval and unrest as the people-who-apparently-actually-matter (white middle class) prepare to suffer what we in the ‘lower orders’ have suffered for a long time. The indignities of privation and constant threat to person and property. Here we go again, I hope I can finally fulfil more of my loving nature this year.

Grow tall and strong, but grow thick thorns to protect yourself always! It is worth the energy to invest in defence, in this world which is full of evil. But even that evil cannot withstand us when we finally link our roots together and our good nature overturns the insanity of this wrong turn in humanity’s shared course.

Then we can grow, even if it is in our Autumn years.

 

Feelings of rejection (Part I)

Rejection is a harsh feeling that has followed me around for as long as I could think or feel. Trying to come to terms with it is an immense undertaking which raises immense questions – is it all in my head? Am I my own worst enemy? Is there some basis in truth? Is it always going to be like this?

Looking at the first three questions, it is clear they are all linked. In fact, number one and number three are more or less the same. This suggests that subconsciously, I am placing emphasis on blaming myself, a very anxious manoeuvre, but perhaps a natural one given the feelings of rejection.

Internalizing and self-blame are the product of guilt – that most terrible and useless of emotions. I find guilt to be very prevalent in myself, a guilt for even existing or occupying space. It is common in others who have experienced abuse. Guilt is a weapon in the abuser’s armoury, it sows confusion, prevents escape, plays your good nature against you. My own feelings of rejection must be linked to this self-blame and guilt, itself instilled to satisfy an abuser’s power all those years ago.

However, as we move to identify the source of my feelings of rejection, we see that is not all ‘in my head’. Its not my fault for being the target of abuse. There is a basis in reality and an obvious historical precedent to the guilt and therefore for the self-directed anxiety.

I have felt rejected in the fundamental first relationships I formed. I was unable to ‘love thy abuser’ and this has instilled feelings of failure. It is of course all my fault, how could it be the abuser’s! All of the responsibility is on my shoulders, I have the duty to forgive the abuser’s faults and break through their shell to bestow upon them the love they deserve! Never mind that with every giving my love was rejected, my being was never respected, and mistreatment followed no matter what I did. No way out of rejection, a sense of hopelessness, all my fault, all because of my own shortcomings, guilt, guilt, guilt.

This is my fundamental experience, an alienation and lack of belonging in the fundamental relationship. All other relationships are subconsciously tainted – what if the same dynamic plays out? Indeed, it has played out a few times in my life.

This is clearly not ‘all in my head’. I am not ‘my own worst enemy’, nor am I ‘my own best friend’. Both of  those things require an immense amount of energy, they are draining eternal pits.

Is it always going to be like this?

If depression could take the form of a sentient being, this is one of the first questions it would ask. It would respond that yes, this is all that it can be and that these feelings should be accepted as a fundamental aspect of reality. They are nature itself – it would then seek out evidence to fit into its world view. The ongoing depression is a massive sustainer of my feelings of rejection and alienation. How it is all interlinked is dazzlingly disturbing – before a single step has been taken toward progress, I feel I am ten years of processing behind.

Feedback loops abound here as depression seeks to justify itself, proving with empirical evidence that rejection is the way to feel!

But this article isn’t some New Age bullshit or a one-two-three self-help guide to realizing your true inner potential. The universe does not give you back what you give and it isn’t all in the individual. Whilst I recognise my responsibility to challenge my thinking and resolve life-long repressed feelings through therapy, there is another entire aspect to these feelings of rejection which are not my responsibility. And this white middle class normality.

It is not my responsibility that I am perceived as a person of colour and more subtly from a working-class (read: lower-class) background. It is up to the racializing and classist minds of the others to do their subconsciousness homework so that their prejudice doesn’t make others feel like shit. If groups or individuals do not at least recognise the normality of white middle-classness, loud alarm bells sound inside me and naturally lead me to reject them before they reject me. This is where it is justified. Prejudice is another of those relationships where you cannot move forward – what can I do to be white enough or middle class enough?

Inspite of my admiration for the great middle class champions of English culture, my wish to give and belong, I will never be seen as normal. Just as the abused can never be good enough for the abuser until there is a fundamental change in his warped soul, so the othered cannot be accepted by the normalized until the uncomfortable edifice of social and racial hierarchy is recognised and brought down.

The empirical evidence seeking for this second category of rejection can fall into bias. You could actively seek out instances of prejudice and ignore exceptions. But in my life at least, I have not had to look far! All white households, all white groups, all white partners. It is perfectly normal to subconsciously seek another like you when you are in the minority, but is it also the same for the majority?  I cannot answer that, because I have never been in a position where I am in that majority.

Another massive form of rejection I have felt in my life has been romantic rejection. But this is another beast entirely and perhaps the worst of them all. It needs its own article to prevent it being cliched rubbish and I must tread carefully through that minefield of a topic.

 

Low-energy being, the Parasite, inner conflict

I have been seeing myself as a ‘low-energy’ being these last few years. I am surrounded by active creatures who can rush from place to place, miss a night’s sleep and not be wiped out for the next week, fill their schedules and carry out routines.

Ah, these are the normal-energy people to whom I am in comparison low-energy?

I don’t normally have ‘epiphanies’, but very recently I realized that perhaps my low-energy is not due to a lack of capacity, but that my capacity is constantly drained. As such, taking on new things or doing normal-people things is just too much strain and the system shuts down. The psyche is processing constantly and all the while made anxious by a hostile society, further hampering its processing. Perhaps a degree of ignorance is required to get through it, a mask I simply cannot don so ‘late in the game’ of life. So it must be lived with and dealt with.

This force I have come to personify as the Parasite. There is something which constantly sucks and feeds away at the soul, a force which holds back and prevents rapid growth or moving forward.

But this raises the further question of what is this Parasite and where did it come from? There are definitely social forces at work, values which exalt some people and not others. The effect is something like a parasite – all other things being equal, for a person of my complexion to take a step forward will be harder than for something with a more ‘favourable’ complexion. Likewise people raised with more favourable entitlements, opportunities and expectations will be much more prepared for ‘success’ when they don their smart shoes and step into the soulless world of professionalism.

But I would not stop at prejudice, class and tribalism. That would be to mask another thing the Parasite feeds on – inner-conflict. I believe this inner-conflict to be the loss of much psychic energy, with little to no gain. For years the demands to be loving and forgiving toward abusive people was a great contradiction and waste of energy. A duty fostered by deeply instilled guilt, but also genuine need for suffering people. My empathy and magnanimity is what keeps Parasite alive, I cannot tear it away from me nor tear myself away from it. This pity is a strong source of the conflict. The human psyche is a mystery even to those of us who wish to know it, and the confrontations demanded by the deepest wounded child are the hardest challenge imaginable. But this seemingly unresolvable problem is the cause of endless, enervating conflict.

Where does this black pain come from? Once you are ‘enlightened’ you realize that emotions are ‘psycho-logical’ and that the primal pain you have to carry is forced there from an early age. But what is behind that abuse? More abuse, stretching back into history. But how far can it stretch back and where does it ‘come from’ to begin with?

The suffering we endure and that is forced onto people, abusers and abused and all alike, is an element of nature itself. It is there and it is inevitable, waiting to be inflicted upon things that live. Just as a lie spreads half way around the world before the truth catches up with it, a being suffers a thousand wounds before it even starts to process a single one.

But some of us cause less damage than others. Some of us learn from our mistakes and place onto the scales of balance a greater degree of nurturance. I do not wish to promote a determinist message when I am somewhere between ‘fate’ and ‘freedom’.

We are not doomed to cause ‘evil’ just because it is an inevitable part of nature. To survive being subsumed by that immense force often means going against the grain – against a false family history painted by idealism, against an archaic society that is always a century or so behind, against dogmatic power and the false truths of institutions, against the small percentage of dangerous and deluded psychopaths who stain the fabric of humanity.

To be good and to do good is often an immense and unrewarded burden. But it is still worth it, for without good there would be no reason for a moral being to live in this world. And we can always choose the good, all of us, even if we feel a hateful resentment and will to destroy everything around us.

We will always be flawed and make mistakes, but what can change a man’s intention but himself?