Sunday, August 21, 2011

Balance and Shit

Sometimes I cannot simultaneously hold different thoughts in my little skull.

I want to be able to feel for people who deserve better and deserve more, and I'm pretty good at seeing power differentials without seeing people as weak and pitiful and frail. You can have less power than I do and not necessarily be weak. Power comparison does not split us into strong and weak as if these things are mutually exclusive and opposing.

Less easy for me is to see others as powerful and to not resent them when they choose to poison themselves with bitterness, destructive personal narratives, and outright refusal to choose their fate. Everyone I encounter has less power than they probably ought but every single one of them has power.

And while I do make exceptions for the psychotic and neurologically damaged, most of us have more power than we'd like to admit, and most of us seem to enjoy grumbling and resignation to even launching a single, direct, earnest expression of fury, dissatisfaction, and outrage. I know far, far, far too many people who, at the end of the world, may likely shrug out of habit, mumble a "it's fine," and schlub their way into oblivion as they slouched their way through life.

And then when I see a bona fide lunatic straining against the constraints of madness and social force, I see what strength exists in the so-called failures, a strength that seems trained out of far more comfortable men and women.

So that's my pitfall. Where I see weakness, I can still see humanity, but where I see power abandoned or ignored or denied, I spit and feel rage well up in me, and that's when I want to lash out.

But what I see as most relevant isn't the whole of us, and the fact is that we all have different cages. What holds you back might not hold me, and I don't need to hate you for it.

It's pretty damn hard to keep myself from it. Old training.

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