Wednesday, July 1, 2015
The Struggle to Live in Decency Continues: Love and Mercy for the "Judas-type"
I wrote this a few weeks ago. It was my response to a conversation had recently…
“If___had been shown love, they might not have done what they did.”
Such a saying casts the wrong-doer as the victim. Is this to say their crimes should be excused? Of course not! Would they have turned out differently? Ask enslavers, slave masters, colonists, those bent on genocide. Ask racists, sexists, megalomaniacs, murderers, rapists, and anyone else wedded to privilege and/or domination. I don’t think its much of a leap to consider that such individuals—personified by characters like Cypher from The Matrix or Lando (to a far, far, lesser extent) or others that betray in favor of either saving their own skins, or power (or at least the chance of having it)—are that far off from joining up with such horrendous legacies.
“But without these people there would be no story.”
No matter how hard I try, I cannot buy into this logic. It sounds too close to “but without slavery where would we be as a people?” It is rather infuriating to hear that time and again. When people become enamored with self-serving power which expresses itself in the form of anything ranging from undivided attention drawn from others, to having the power to command that attention, loyalty, service from others, it is hard to know whether love would really have been the answer. Love demands responsibility to do well by others, to respect them enough to know them, which allows for us to care about them effectively. Being shown that is one thing, but passing that gift on is another. It seems all such wrong-doing characters want is that comfort that comes with self-centered, self-serving, power. That is the love they seek. At the end of the day, we should consider that a “Judas” acts out of this kind of greed and jealously which is ultimately a great sense of self-love to be consumed for self alone. It becomes evident that to expect reciprocation is a futile one. Exploitation through domination is not an expression of love. You can lead such a character to love but if it doesn’t serve their purpose, the wont fully partake beyond what is for them.
History teaches time and again such “sensitive” folks are not to be trusted if only because they want what they want and find it bothersome to work for anyone or anything else if it does not ultimately serve their ultimate ends and means. It’s hard to think that they do take on anyone else’s suffering as their own, or that they do so with anyone they find tiresome. If they do it is to suit their own needs. Their alliance is not fully realized because of the tendency they have to perpetuate oppression on others, often without recognizing that it is happening. Indeed their allyship is with power. They must be remembered at all costs . The people that are aware of this try to disrupt and discourage such tendencies, whether it is through speaking truth to power or attempting to divert such energies into more positive ones. Such disruptions are upsetting because they do not want to let go of the possibility of one day getting a taste of that power, that they will get that taste one day. That is what they are working for. Convincing us that they do it for survival, that they do it for us is part of the game and should therefore be taken with a grain of salt. Does survival to you mean being served caviar and steak? Cause people have survived with far less and continue living decently. Don't demean their lives with your b.s. version of survival.
These folks—the “Judas” type—should no doubt be treated with compassion. They are long suffering after all. Such treatment may not change their trajectory, but will hopefully stick out in their mind as a potential path to take. Either way, the choice is theirs and we must accept that they may not make the one we hope for. Still, treating them with dignity and respect is the least and/or most (depending on the situation) we should do. Everyone could use a friend and no one should live a life of suffering without one. Do what we can to love them as fully as possible might be a decent resting place.
Not that I wholly agree nor engage in this behavior. I am human and still working through this logic as someone who is continually at risk of being dissed and therefore does not feel obligated to give anything to those that are more in love with self and power than being a decent person consistently. Liking someone is not a requirement of caring about their spiritual, holistic growth and prosperity however (Dr. King told us that). Especially when they seem hell bent on continuing with their ways, which makes this my greatest personal challenge yet. I mean, why do those that suffer at the hands of their oppressor always get called on to be the better person, to show mercy, to show love? My kneejerk response is likely, you first, before blasting them Bishop style. The struggle to be a decent human being continues...