Look within and look around. You are not lost.
Yes, I have changed. I have reached a personal crisis, and it is here that I have had every idea or belief reduced to a bottom line. My instinct is fear. Now I have transcended that fear and thus transcended my old self, but I didn’t get it from being a good boy and believing what I was told. I did try, and it drove me repeatedly to my true nature.
We learn empathy not from empathy, but from our own pain. We learn truth not from being trusted, but from our own doubts. Every strength you have arose from one of your weaknesses. If you were never challenged, you would never have learned or grown. They say life isn’t easy, or it isn’t fair. This isn’t necessarily a flaw in the world. Any strength out of balance becomes a vice. Anger in balance is a passion for justice. Out of balance it is an excuse for abuse.
Is curiosity a natural virtue? Curiosity can be generalized to the point of preventing any mastery. Curiosity is human nature, neither a strength or a vice. These factors we call strength or vice both originate from a deeper source. Our strengths are not our reason for being, our vices are not our reason to self destruct. They are facets. Like noting my shirt has the color red in it. You might like the color red so would see it as good. Another might not and judge it as bad. We are what we are. It’s the spirit that runs deeper.
‘Facets’ of strengths and vices. They are external to your spirit. They are aspects of this life. If you have strong legs, and then an accident makes you quadriplegic, you haven’t been made weaker. When you discover a new talent in yourself, you aren’t made better than anyone who seems to have less talent. There is an African tribe that scar striated lines on their foreheads. It is a symbol of their adulthood and they know they pass. By his stripes you are healed Christians say. I was never healed by his stripes, but have been by mine.
Perhaps there is something you have rendered taboo about your negative experiences, so not knowing it you don’t yet have control of it? I find to let go you must first fully accept. Knowing that when you let go, you let go of some things you may have become emotionally attached to. Like anger, feeling you were wronged. People love to cling to that, and usually they think it gives the event meaning.
Did you accept what has happened to you, or just wanted to so very badly? The wanting isn’t the doing. Some people neither know or believe what I say when I say I accept things. I can enumerate a long list of sins committed against me. Not a single one had anything to do with me really. They were part of being in those people’s lives. As for my own sins, I can only live in knowing my errors, and my virtues arise from my sins. I know how to hurt people, scare people. I am a monster lest I become a monster, to paraphrase Nietzsche. I at first fought the monstrous nature of life, and my peers. In fighting monsters, I become one.
I was once remarkably romantic. People saw it as very sweet. I was very devoted and selfless. People saw it as being whipped, being naïve. I was very open minded. People saw it as me being confused. Much has changed about me in the effort to learn myself in this situation. I would like to think I am not without virtues, but the monster I feared in me I have now become and my seeming motivations are changed. To date some see me as “tricky”, and that is speaking politely. They see me as “edgy”, and that is if they keep my company at all. They see me as “scary” in extreme cases. Some people strangely find that exciting it seems. My desires, my capacity to care, have changed. Not gone away, but I am not the man I once was. To summarize all my vices, people say I’m “weird”, and people fear the unknown the most. I am the devil they don’t know, if you follow the phrase. It is sort of the bottom line. This is why I fought being myself for so long. I sensed that fear, but I value truth. If my truth helps anyone find their own, then it is all the more valuable.
How should you fear me? As in all things in life, circumstance. I tend to bring to others what they bring to me, and I know your fear. One of my gifts is knowing peoples weaknesses. I know how things and people fall apart. How things fail and die and thus know the other side too, but for me negative first. All your sins remembered, but in that remembrance also lays your virtues.
One may fear themselves. You fear your sorrow, so instead you hate and blame yourself. It is easier and lets you toughen up and ignore things. For another it’s rage. Rage from fear. Has lived with it for so long it doesn’t scare him anymore, but he’s still afraid of himself. He isn’t afraid that anyone will hurt him. He is afraid he will do harm and he focuses on avoiding it, a lot. For another it’s being consumed by desire, but she always was and is only now beginning to experience some easing of that. She fears wild addiction, and she was right smack dab in the middle of addiction. Addiction to a self image, addiction to control and yet denying that she wanted control. No ones dark side is simple, but it isn’t invisible either.
Not as consciously introspective as I am? I’m not that way by choice. Nature makes me live with me. I don’t have those other defences.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.