I usually try to restrict myself from writing posts like this on here because I usually feel some what guilty burdening you all with my thoughts–this is my poetry blog, not a soapbox, but sometimes horrors of reality cause my thoughts to boil over. If anything this post will help my readers, people, you to get to know me on a more personal note and get you to understand my point of view on human nature and life in general.
One thing about being a writer– actually let’s make that being human in general– is that you are often forced to step back and observe, constantly observe. You are forced to create your own understanding of reality–I call it creating your own reality– and attempt to piece together your thoughts on human nature. For many years I have openly tried forcing the philosophy that human nature is to be good and to do good. And I here am openly admitting my naivety. I have created my own reality which was to trusting and caring of the people and world around us–it seems nobody is safe. We truly are enveloped in a world of chaos. just glance at the horrors on the front page of a news paper, watch five minutes of the evening news, or reflect on world history. I have often ignored this, some times knowingly, to focus on the Good. I’ve looked at the little moments of mankind and pieced together all of the beauty and triumph I have learned about and experienced in attempt to hide the truth or at least numb it because, honestly, it’s extremely hard to live in a world full of such horrors and hate.
I guess part of my fundamental problems with accepting and dealing with the evils of mankind is that I am the type of person who believes we are greatly shaped by our surroundings. From the moment we are born our souls are extremely malleable and our consciences are built up moment after moment, pieced together through time via an endless amount variables and experiences. I do believe we have freewill, the freedom of choice and the ability to create our own destiny, yet I think our decisions are sometimes plagued by faulty ideologies, our ignorances, our biology, or even the fear of making a choice at all. I personally don’t believe we can all fully over come this– not now, this is humanities’ journey. So when atrocities happen, a part of me is overwhelmed by hatred, loathing everything, searching for blame, begging for the guilty to suffer the wrath of our judgement (which is okay), but another part of me is greatly conflicted and must ask “Where did We (as a whole) go wrong? How can we fix this?” And I am left with no answers and forced too accept there are some things in this life will not change and that not everything will be alright, ever again.
As I write this post, I can’t help think about one of my good friends from my youth. I remember hearing the news either last year or two years ago that he was arrested for drug related robbery and murder. And when I heard that news, I was drawn again to my past where I saw him as a child–his life before him full of potential. I could see his past. I could see his family. I could see everything about him. I even saw the false ideologies being built up. I saw how the echoing of his past (and even his father’s past) created his future. I saw him consumed by addictions. I saw the symbolic death of a youthful child I once knew and loved. Then I was consumed in hatred. I hated my friend. I hated myself for hating him. I hated myself because I realized I was a part of his past, his influence, and I wondered if I personally could have changed anything. I knew and still know there was good within him and still buried deep within his regret, there is a sliver of good within him today. Too little, too late. I couldn’t help but think I could have made a bigger difference in his life and tugged him away from such a horrid fate. I’ll admit, I partially blamed myself for blood that wasn’t on my hands. Seriously, what is one to think. The only comfort that healed or rather is still healing this wound is knowing that I cannot change the past and there is nothing I could have done or can do now except to contemplate on the lessons I’ve learned from his mistakes and my experiences. His actions were not on my hands. I also will admit, I brushed off these thoughts as much as possible because, honestly, ignorance in some ways is bliss. Actually I really haven’t thought about his for daughter for a while now, again my heart sinks… I am so sorry.
I will stop here for a moment to say I don’t really don’t know why I am writing. Okay, I know why, but I don’t know why I am sharing this with all of you. Possibly I just needed to vent my frustrations and to share my thoughts. Maybe it’s because writing is my way of quieting down an over active mind. Maybe I feel an obligation to share my thoughts with people so that maybe just one other person can shake their head and think, “I’m not the only one who thinks of these things.” Maybe I share these thoughts so that I can step away from myself and read what is actually going through my head. Maybe I really just don’t know.
Last year was probably the first time I confronted with the truth that “not everything will be okay,” when my father unexpectedly died of a rare infection in the muscle in his back. One day he was alive, the next forever gone. I had to compete with the randomness of Nature. Although I have “healed” and dealt with his death far better than I would have imagined, I will still say not everything is okay because there are so many questions, the silences are endless, and, well, I miss my father dearly. The death of my father is was truly a random occurrence and there was nothing anyone could really do–no one to blame but Nature.
Today though, when I had a beautiful day shattered by the news that my friend’s younger sister was murdered, I was taken aback thrown into this long query. Why? Why? Why? What the hell is wrong with people?! What more is there to say about these senseless acts? There is no logic. Her boyfriend apparently murdered her in a fit of rage. He stabbed her. Left her for dead in a park. For this I have no answers, and I never shall. Why her? Why my friend’s family? Which leads us here to the dark truths, the random horrors of Nature and mankind. In life, horrible, unthinkable things might and probably will happen. And, honestly, there’s nothing we can do. And there are people out there who are or can be incarnation of evil pure evil. Unable to handle their rage. Destroying the one thing that is special, life. They are the blight of mankind, casting their darkness on our hopes and dreams. So many look up to God because of this very question and ask for his reasoning, but it is this very question so many lose faith. What do I believe? Honestly, I don’t know. I loathe my hatred, but I realize it’s only natural.
And though I say all of this in an extreme pessimistic light, there are things that we can do to help each other through these horrors, because, as I said before, it’s truly hard to live in a world with so much darkness and uncertainty. I may have renounced my thoughts on how I believed humanity is innately good, but I still want people to know that I do believe that we as individuals have the potential for good– to do good and to be good. (Whatever “good” means, exactly because as I grow older I’m starting to realize it’s not a simple dichotomy of good versus evil, but at points and especially at the point when I am writing this there is a stark and unmistakeable contrast between the two. That’s a different post for a different time.) I think it’s important take a moment, reflect upon yourself, question your thoughts, question society, and try to learn and understand the world around you. And importantly don’t look at the world through your own standards, step away, think “Verstehen” and attempt to view the world from other perspectives. And as you have a further understanding of people then remember the worlds that Kurt Vonnegut Jr once wrote, “God damn it, you have to be kind.” So be kind to everyone you can.
I say this because there is nothing we can really change that has already happened and there is a lot we can’t change that will happen; however, we can still make the world better place for others. Simple acts of kindness can drown away these harsh truths about mankind at least for a moment, which is important because these little moments and hopes are what let us carry onward, despite everything that we know. These moments of kindness have the ability help shape other’s realities–perhaps this can be good. Perhaps this could create a better world. I really don’t know, but instead of just saying we are good, we must be good– an action which is both easier than we thought and harder than we can imagine. No, this will not make the atrocities go away, but it’ll help others deal with these horrors–if anything, kindness helps me.
This post may just be my internal monologue rationalizing and wrestling with things beyond my control, begging for a better place, attempting to make a difference–either way, I feel better and calmer having written it. Thank you for reading this post and following my blog, it truly means a lot.