I have hate.
I have to acknowledge that as readily and honestly as every other emotion I possess and are subject to. It’s important to openly accept that it is an emotional state that I inhabit at times. To do any less would be to disregard its power and impact upon me and the life which I choose to lead. Ignoring or suppressing any emotion doesn’t stop it from existing within. It just blinds us to its influence upon our thoughts words and deeds. In that crafted ignorance of self we can do more harm to ourselves and others than we would ever conceive of consciously. So I say it to you here, I have hate, so that you may witness me and be aware of my accountability to the management of my emotions.
Let me define what I mean when I say hate. Many people equate it with disgust, with anger or as the opposite of love. For me hate has a very specific meaning clearly marking it as a unique state in its own right. Where as feelings of disgust can start in the nausea causing twist of the stomach, or anger in the elevation of the heart rate, in me hate is something that begins in the mind. We don’t come to hate naturally, it’s not the hammering of the heart of the twist of the stomach, though it can cause these reactions. Hate starts with a choice. Its a function of the mind which in turn dictates the biological reactions. No child is born to hate, they are raised to it. Nurtured, educated and conditioned to it by the society in which they grow. This is how I personally view hate. I’m not above it or outside of it. I am as subject to it as any other being raised in any one of a variety of global cultures.
Let me take you one step further into my perspectives and say that hate, as a human condition, is extremely powerful but that in and of itself does not make it ‘good’ nor ‘evil’. I have known many in my time who wouldn’t or couldn’t acknowledge their hate. Either from a position of blind ignorance or that of conscious suppression. It leaked out of the ignorant in explosions of aggression or as stewing snide passive aggression in others that claimed to only acknowledge Love in themselves. I have also seen others, fuelled by their hate, driven to achieve, overcome and endure so that they might bring about change for a greater good. For me, hate is neither good nor bad. Its morality can be defined by the actions and impact of its application.
Hopefully by now you have a clearer picture what I mean when I say hate. If hate starts in the mind, defined by a choice, then I will be very careful of what I choose to hate. For some, hate is an ending. They choose to hate a person, place or thing, and that is it. They have defined a perspective that will dictate their thoughts words and deeds should they interact with the object of their hate and as such the matter is in some respects resolved for them. They no longer need to take any further active consideration to the matter. For me, it’s not that simple. I am very cautious of my emotional capacity and its ability to impact and influence others. I am not blind to the responsibility I hold for the position I take up in my communities. There are easy examples all about us of those whose hate drives them to do abhorrent things to others, or who use hate to engender fear and drive us all further from union within a global community. Hate is not an ending for me, it’s a choice I must revisit to ensure that I am not allowing it to adversely influence my mental, emotional and physical condition. It’s a state that I must manage so that I can stand over the morality of my actions when they are driven by my hate.
At this point it should be fair to say that the preamble is complete and the matter at hand can be discussed with what I hope is a clear understanding of my personal perspectives. I have hate. I choose to hate a culture of emotional and physical abuse which socialises young males to become emotionally crippled. A culture that denies males acceptance of the validity of the full range of their emotion. A culture that reward only aggressive domineering behaviours. A culture that dismisses, denigrates, or abuses a male for the expression of anything other than anger. A culture that denies males the necessary skills to become emotionally intelligent. A culture that rewards the strong for preying upon those which they perceive as weaker, where one’s masculinity can be defined by the mental or physical prowess of your form and the manner in which you use it to dominate others. This is something I am not outside of or above. This is something that I was socialised with and this is something that I hate.
For the sake of clarity, I do not hate myself. I do not hate men. I do not hate any specific demographic, cultural cross section or nationality. I hate the culture which underlies all of that. A culture that causes harm, not just to the males subject to its conditioning, but to anyone who interacts with those in whom that conditioning is not challenged, educated against, or overcome with emotional intelligence. I have mentioned emotional intelligence a number of times now and believe that it also warrants a definition. For this one I will provide a psychological definition. Emotional intelligence can be seen as the capacity to be aware of, control, and express one's emotions, and to handle interpersonal relationships judiciously and empathetically.
So the question now becomes, what do I do with my hate? In what ways must I be aware of it and how do I use its power to the best advantage, not just for myself, but for a greater good?
I strive very hard to be an idealist. I always have and fate willing I always will. It’s a conscious choice I make every day. I hold to hope with a intentional force of will. That’s why you will see me wearing superhero t-shirts depicting logos of Superman or Captain America. It’s not because they are powerful. It’s not because they have special abilities. It’s because they are idealists. Some might say that a hero is someone who sees the very worst of things, but never stops trying to change it for the better. No matter the cost.
It is that cost which has brought me to these words today. I continue to struggle against my socialised conditioning. I continue to strive for a positive emotional balance within myself and do my best to portray this for those around me. I know I am not alone in this effort and to those struggling as I do, I acknowledge you and appreciate your efforts.
To those for whom the struggles became too much, for those who made the choice to end their story, know that I offer you only my love for your impact on the world and my own life. Know that I hold no anger against you only sadness for the loss of you. My anger is directed by my hate, and I hate the culture and the systems and the society which failed you. We all face our own emotional turmoil from day to day. This thing we call life is a messy emotional business for the moment we arrive kicking and screaming into it until the time that we leave. I hate that we are all diminished, lessened as a species, by a culture that denies males the validity of their emotions, as well as the support and education they need to be aware of, control, and express those emotions.
I have personally lost many to the impact of emotional trauma for which my society has insufficient support, my country insufficient medical aid, my community insufficient recognition and acceptance. This is the cost and today is yet another day in which it has been paid with a life which should never have been lost.
I have hate.
Now you also know what it is that I hate.
This is what I do with my hate, use its power to speak out against that which harms us all. It’s what he always did and what we all should do. I will miss you Jon. We are less now without you but I pray that you have peace now.
We all have thoughts and perspectives and opinions. Its simply part of the human condition as a socialized species. So In the interest of insight, this is where I will share my perspective and opinions.