I am not a victim! I know this for a fact and at the same time I cannot deny that there have been people, systems, and deep ignorance aimed in my direction attempting to make me one all of my life. But not just me. Since people have been people, there have been those who try to establish their own sense of worth and value at the expense of others. It manifests itself in infinite ways–from certain elements of how this nation was established to the person who takes out their unresolved anger on a non-verbal person with special needs and every other configuration we can imagine. Unfortunately, it is what we do as people. When we feel powerless we grab for whatever sense of power we can grab from those we feel are “beneath” us in some way.
In my opinion, that’s what I see when I look at the state of this world right now. It’s just one crazy power grab. It’s like most of us are living int the Hunger Games and we don’t even know it. That’s a downgrade from living in the Matrix by the way. At least in the Matrix most of the people were unconscious in their pods believing that they were living whatever life they were experiencing. Now, many of us are getting thrown in the ring eyes wide open fighting against each other and our own best interests like crabs in a bucket while those who are cushioned from our “Victim Wars” are shaking their heads and cashing checks. When are we going to see that at our present level of consciousness all we are doing is competing to see who can win at losing? Come on people! Do you really want the next phase of human history to be “The Hungry Matrix Game of Drones”?
I never thought I would use a quote by Marilyn Manson, but when someone is speaking truth, I’m not going to be fool enough to ignore them simply based on the fact that I totally don’t get what’s up with their fashion sense. I agree with what he says. And I will add to it by saying that there are those who identify with being a victim so much that they will not only not stand up for themselves, they will also hold down others who are trying to stand up. I’m saying this from experience.
Now, I am aware that some people will be offended by my stand on victimization. They will either see it as excusing the behavior of those people who actively aim to harm others and oppress them or they will incorrectly assume that I have not had any real experience of suffering under the hand of the oppressive thumb of the American system or other challenges in this life. I assure both assumptions are incorrect. As I said in the post, When the Pain is too much, I Write, I am coming from the perspective where “I do not believe that the “unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” were ever meant to apply to me.” What that means is that I operate from a mindset of one who has nothing to lose by telling it as I see it.
Also contributing to my position, is my spiritual discipline. Christ teaches his followers not to be surprised by the haters of this world and to ultimately forgive them for their ignorance. He even said that they will sometimes kill the lovers of true life and equality under the assumption that they are doing the right thing. Since my personal allegiance is to the Way of Christ and because I consider myself a welcomed citizen of God’s eternal realm, I see people’s uninformed hate as about as significant as one person spitting in the ocean and quite pitiable on some level.
Now does saying all of this mean that I am never hurt by what I witness in this world or that I don’t acknowledge the pain others express. No. I hurt every single day. I hurt much in the way that I believe a mother hurts when she watches one of her children making harmful and avoidable decision based on the false belief that they are not loved. Like a parent does for their child, at some point, spiritual maturity compels you to stop taking people’s intent to harm personally. By God’s grace that is where I find myself.
What I have discovered through Christ, is that being the victim actually makes it easier on the so called oppressor than standing calmly in the awareness that in truth they have no power to hold over you or take away from you. As long as you are aware of this you cannot be a victim no matter what happens. The key to realizing this is realizing that we are more than our bodies and the stories told about those bodies. The thing is, most of us only know how to relate to ourselves this way and so we cannot see that at some point we decide whether we will continue to be a victim or not. This is what Jesus demonstrated when the religious authorities turned on him and his friends abandoned him. And when Pilate said to him, “Do you refuse to speak to me? Do you not know that I have power to release you, and power to crucify you?”, Jesus’ response showed that even when he was beaten beyond recognition he still did not see himself as a victim. He always knew that speaking truth was going to attract haters who might come after him, but he lived it anyway–even declaring in advance that no one can take his life, but that he is the one who gives his life freely.
Now before I close out, let me say that everything I am saying comes with the spiritual caveat of how I practice my faith. Without my hope in Christ as I’ve come to know it, I’d never be able to endure my experiences in this world and retain or maintain sanity. I say this to say that I can totally see why so many are angry right now and why so many others are pulling some extra covers over their heads. In coming posts I will be addressing some of my other thoughts on this “cult of victimization” that is defining our country right now. I hope to make it clear that I see that some of us do have the “right” to be acknowledged as victims, while showing that by giving up that “right” we can help create a world where victimizing is no longer an option.
Like always, if you’d like to explore this more deeply, I’m open to mutually edifying dialogue.