I read this today.
A couple of weeks ago this traveled with me on a few morning runs.
And I thought about how I was feeling not many weeks ago about this.
Bad thoughts ran through my head all three times for which I felt guilty–are you *bleeping* serious?! I can think of no curse word to really balance against my guilt–one that can handle its weight. I fear the balance of the Universe right now; and am tipping right along what I perceived to be, but now sadly doubt is, its tipping point.
I feel guilty this morning; outed for my doubts, fears; want to say it ain’t so but I worry that my blood memory is too tainted to preserve me–that it will be my undoing because I am feeling quite undone today.
(I already know this means paint, paste, and words; I already ran. And I have to finish the day before any of that). Unraveling…
Sometimes, like today, I have a hard time seeing beyond privilege–my own, as well as where I lack it and others don’t.
The privilege I’m speaking of is that invisible protective sheath serving to shield you–by no virtue of your own really; almost a natural circumstance–from the ills of the world. But the sheath of privilege is also rather dangerous because in protecting you, it can also can shield you from the exposure that helps a body naturally develop the kind of immunities that make survival possible.
Oh, and the manufactured ones? While they do work, they have side effects that can be equally or more uncomfortable than the ills themselves.
So whether you recognize yourself as privileged or as one without privilege (I recognize my roles in both categories), you will likely find yourself in some discomfort at some point. Today is one of the points for me.
Guilt about it (privilege I mean) is a discomfort we all have the potential to face when we’re at that point. Guilt wonders: has privilege afforded me the cushion to be hyper-sensitive? It questions: has my place in the underprivileged made me unduly untrustworthy of those I see as otherwise–especially if privilege is indeed a circumstance less determined by one’s own actions than of his genetics/ancestry?
I am dwelling in this discomfort today knuckle-white. Each time I’m here, I’m not convinced of the benefit at the end; that I’ll even make it to the end to know. Which, I guess, is where people get off calling guilt a “useless” emotion. I doubt it is.
One thought on “On Guilt”
Hmmm guess I don’t really understand the ‘guilt’ you’re feeling, so I probably shouldn’t comment, BUT I WILL…the ‘privilege that you have that consumes and/or covers you is that same ‘hedge of protection’ that those that love you pray to surround you…it allows you to function throughout & without hurt/harm & danger. As one of the most principal players in your life, there are times when I can’t give you a warm hug..and you’re missing it…but close your eyes, hug yourself and think of me…it’s there. We all have ‘down time’…but it’s not necessary to embrace guilt…you’re innocent…aren’t you?! It’s all right – trust me…it really is.