Friday, September 28, 2012


Having so recently written so much about love, I now find my thoughts turning to what's commonly considered to be its opposite.

I don't understand hate, except perhaps in the most abstract of terms.  I understand anger, yes, and bitterness.  (Perhaps I understand bitterness a little too well.)  I understand frustration.  I understand jealousy up to a point, but I don't understand letting it get to the point where it causes a problem.  I understand fear.  I understand suspicion.  I understand dislike.  I understand self-loathing—depression taught me that much.  I understand pain.  And I certainly understand distrust.  I've felt all of these things, though not always to the same degree.  But I don't understand hate.

How does it work?  What sows the seed?  What makes people actively want to harm other people, or rejoice when terrible things happen to them?  What convinces them that hate is right?  How do they justify it?  Why do they embrace it?

I just can't quite get my mind around the concept of such strong negative feelings about another human being that suddenly they don't seem human anymore, or worthy of the consideration that one would give to another person.  I don't understand the willingness to kill people for being different, or for having other ideas, or for any other reason except perhaps self-defence.

Sometimes I wonder if this means that I can't really understand love, either.

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