A strange thing is happening to me, I'm becoming lighthearted. I even skip like a kid at times. Today, I bring up the subject of self and self-presentation. Self for me has been a mixed blessing. I would say that I am somewhat esoteric, shy, empathic, yet arrogant and vain. I don't agree with most of what is postulated as reality, as science, moral codes, democratism. Most of it serves to control behavior; what one considers moral or immoral changes with circumstance, culture, location and times. Do I consider Hitler immoral? I don't consider anyone immoral, not even Jeff Dahmer. Morality places us in a judgmental position and clouds perception. Erykah Badu got in trouble this week for stating she thought Hitler had some good traits. The comment went viral and we'll hear no more Baduisms for a long time. She merely commented on a banal truth about human beings. Every action committed is both self-serving and altruistic.
Hitler and Dahmer were idiots and a threat to humankind. We have no idea why they behaved in their irrational and destructive manner, actions that led to their deaths. Our only recourse is to separate such people from humanity because they can't abide its most basic rule to not harm others at will. The Hammurabi Code, revenge for hurt inflicted, (an eye for an eye,) was directed at compensation to the victim for the pain inflicted, which has some merit. A father this week asked the court for just that. He wanted 5 minutes alone with the man who sexually assaulted his 2 daughters. The problem with revenge is that it cannot be sated. What can possibly lessen the pain for the loss of a loved one? Truth be told, that father wants more than 5 minutes with the assailant, he wants to kill him, to destroy him. You have the family of Ron Goldman, the man standing next to O. J. Simpson's wife the night O. J. brutally murdered the both of them. It's been 15 years and Goldman's father and sister are still dogging O.J. seeking revenge.
Bad things happen and there's not a lot you can do about it. Revenge merely postpones having to figure out how to go on with your life. I do believe in ethics, in behaving impeccably. That is, behaving in the most appropriate and beneficial manner toward self, and then society. My 'self' in a society that chooses to see the world in black and white, good and evil, simplistic, mawkish terms has made for a frustrating adjustment. My attitude for a long time was to say "Fuck You." If you say fuck you for a long enough period you become alienated, which is good, like hitting the pause button. You can't remain hostile forever; alone for a long enough period you become willful, some people would say self-centered. Your will comes to the front and asserts itself, regardless of its impact, if it is important enough, worth fighting for. You have taken your place in society.
And that reader, is love. You are giving totally of yourself whether it is accepted or rejected.