"Then weltering seas of filth
And ever-rippling dung: and plunged therein,
Whoso has wronged the stranger here on earth,
Or robbed his boylove of the promised pay,
Or swinged his mother, or profanely smitten
His father's cheek, or sworn an oath forsworn…"
Aristophanes, “The Frogs”
It’s come to my attention recently, that forgiveness isn’t a bad way to go, even if the above isn’t guaranteed, or even possible. I don’t have to practice turning the other cheek very often, because I’m generally such a sweet, upbeat and simply charming person. I’d prefer to make myself into a joke, rather than to face conflict and open hostility. It’s my way of avoiding uncomfortable mojo. It’s what makes me such a sucker for passive aggression – I’m easily wounded by the invisible bad vibe.
So, even though I preach forgiveness, I have promised myself to stop making excuses for the bad behavior of others. It’s all I can manage these days to forgive myself. One thing I know is there’s no way out of here alive. If the show ends when the curtain falls on my last performance, why not go out doing something that feels good to me. If I can be anything I want to be, why not be kind, tender, and forgiving? Then again, why not have some fun and be rude, disagreeable and generally unlikable?
My answer is that perhaps there is some great wheel turning at the heart of the universe, and we’ll all be back again and again, or at least until we get it right. Perhaps there’s some cosmic dice game and the odds are on the House. Maybe karma works.I'll always pay my boylove just in case.
I’m ducking an important issue here: whether there is such a thing as unforgivable behavior. Of course evil exists. We should speak out when our silence gives power to those who hurt us. And like any good parent correcting any misbehaving child, all grown ups should call other grownups on unacceptable behavior.
Good exists too.I say I’d rather generate a forgiving vibe than an angry one, and it seems to be my life’s work to live up to that.
I’ll be in the garden if anybody needs me.