Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Sticks and Stones, Luv...

I wasn't meaning to become so philosophical when I posted this little blurb:

I'll just tell you now
'cause I dont think you know
The things you tried to kill
I found a way to grow
I'll just tell you now
You may have made your mark
But I'm still here today
Knowing who you are
I'll just tell you now

I wasn't meaning to become philosophical, but someone unfortunately asked me "who is killing"?

That question has an easy answer and a hard answer.

The easy answer is to tell yourself that you are the only one who has the power to destroy your own life. It is so common and so easy to tell someone that only they can control their mood, that they only they can give themselves a bad day, that how we meet something (whether face on, accepting it, or whether as a victim) is 100% in our own hands. But that philosophical notion does not take into account the reality of the fact that being demoralized by others can actually and truly be demoralizing. It takes a great deal of personal struggle to rise up above demoralization.

Part of that is learning, teaching yourself, to not allow demoralizing influences to demoralize you. But it is truly easier said than done. "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never harm me" sounds all good and well, but generally it isn't true. More harm is done by words than any other way. Words inflame passions, they cause misunderstandings, and often these passions and misunderstandings lead to even worse problems. Wordless demoralization can be even more intense than demoralization by words. The phrase actions speak louder than words, is a notion to be reckoned with.

How often does a look demoralize someone even more than mere words? Or how often can silence demoralize someone? The silence, for example, you find if someone refuses to ever speak to you again?

The "hard" answer would be to accuse someone, or to point out someone's faults as if they were deliberately and intentionally causing you personal harm. This is both hard because it has the tone of accusation associated with it, and hard because you don't really want to mention the fact that someone is demoralizing you, whether it is intentional or unintentional on their part.

I find that, philosophically, neither the hard nor the easy approach give any solution. All a person who feels they have been victimized (such as I feel) can do is say that they forgive. It is difficult in many ways to forgive someone who doesn't recognize any fault with respect to you. Would the Christian thing to do be to confront them with their faults, even if it stirs up more trouble and hardship in everyone's life, when you've got peace about it all yourself, and don't want to put yourself through that turmoil all over again?

It would be cease to be useful if I stirred up dust again, especially now that the dust has settled.

Another "easy answer" is to blame the devil, the deceiver, the divider, the one who stirs up trouble and alienation between people. I find that approach equally unsatisfactory, since the devil needs some help. He really can do nothing without us.

So, I am left with asking myself: is it I who have helped the devil make progress in your lives, separating you from one another, and from God, from me, by giving you such wonderful reasons to hate me?

If you go up to someone out of the blue and say "I forgive you" does it not imply you are accusing them of some offense? And if you go up to someone out of the blue and say "forgive me" does it imply that you are acknowledging in yourself of some secret offense you've committed in your heart against them? Is not an obvious answer to each of these questions, "what for?"

Personal relationships are truly confounding, confusing, troubling, and plagued with misunderstandings. I can sometimes understand why a person would chose to live as a recluse in a cave, cut off from all others. But then there would be no opportunity for forgiveness, understanding, love, would there?

I wish I could say to everyone: I love you, and I forgive you, and I bear no ill-will against you, and I do not accuse you of ever intentionally harming me, and I too, do not feel any sense of wishing to harm you in my heart or soul. Anything you have heard to the contrary is a falsehood. I encourage you to confront the falsehoods, to seek peace, and love and understanding. Everything else in life is a waste of time and energy. Everything else in life will lead you to destruction.

As for me, the thing that someone, something, some power, or some entity tried to stamp out, to kill, to destroy, has become for me life, and peace, and love, and a path into the future. I am sorry if this bothers you in any way.

No comments: