“Life’s not fair!”
These same lines were repeated verbatim by different people almost as if orthodox citizens had some script beamed into their head from a collective central computer.
As a teenager, I took these criticisms quite seriously and personally.
Surely I was perhaps deluding myself. Because if I had deluded myself successfully, I by definition wouldn’t be aware of having done so, right?
And the evidence of my failure in life, a dearth of connections and social status was staring me in the face.
There was a pragmatic defeatist in me that told me “They’re right. You have to change yourself or perish.”
But some indignant stubborn streak or passive aggressive laziness, however one wishes to interpret it halted any efforts I might have undertaken to whip myself into shape and embrace their wonderful unjust world.
Now, years later I look back and hardly find my critics inspirational.
I wonder now exactly what they were trying to accomplish with these shame-based criticisms!
We can sort of see it as a Pascal’s gamble.
I’ve skillfully deluded myself that I’m not a miserable failure. I must accept their world view, dutifully settle into my ‘place’ at the bottom of the totem pole, and stoically take all the beatings and injustices that life typically rains down on social inferiors while trying desperately to ‘better’ myself at the expense of someone else.
The only relief comes from “putting in the work” to “get my shit together” and “pull myself up by my bootstraps.”
My only hope to succeed lies in renouncing everything I value in myself so that maybe one day I can be a mediocrity living comfortably above the societal basement crammed with outright rejects.
I’m a majority of one and I am in the right to renounce my oppressive, backwards, dying birth culture and create one of my own that values and affirms my natural virtues.
There is certainly plenty of injustice in the world but I will never use this ‘unfairness’ as an excuse for subjecting myself to social debasement and degradation. No amount of compliance or appeasement on my part will beget any appreciation from the unjust. There is no respect for those who have no self-respect.
In retrospect I realized:
No possible good outcome could result from accepting my critics’world view! It did not make sense on any level to renounce a hopeful and optimistic world view in favor of a dismal hell of a society with no meaningful purpose or values. A society that had already decided I was an undesirable!
Because I knew I was not an objective observer, I knew I could never be sure if I was deluded or not…
But in a way, the very idea of renouncing myself in favor of my birth society eliminated itself.
How was any life in their world worth living?
Looking back and examining their admonitions now, their presumption and condescension is astounding.
They nobly took it on themselves to offer me a position living in the sewers while they lived on some higher plane and they honestly expected me to take it! Their opinion of me was that low. No wonder some part of me always raged whenever I heard their words of false concern!