I've been wanting to write about a topic that is probably not very popular, but one that has been on my mind for some time anyway, and that is the nature of hate.
Here is what I turned up when looking for the etymology and definition of the word.http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=hate
Old English hatian "regard with extreme ill-will, have a passionate aversion to, treat as an enemy," from Proto-Germanic *haton (source also of Old Saxon haton, Old Norse hata, German hassen, Gothic hatan "to hate"), from PIE root *kad-"sorrow, hatred" (source also of Avestan sadra- "grief, sorrow, calamity," Greek kedos "care, trouble, sorrow," Welsh cas"pain, anger"). Related: Hated; hating. French haine (n.), haïr (v.) are from Germanic.
Old English hete "hatred, spite, envy, malice, hostility," from Proto-Germanic *hatis- (source also of Old Norse hattr, Old Frisian hat, Dutch haat, Old High German has, German Hass, Gothic hatis; see hate (v.)). Altered in Middle English to conform with the verb. Hate mail is first attested 1951. Hate crime attested from 1988; hate speech by 1990.
I guess the reason this intrigues me is because I have developed over the course of my life a small hate club of people who don't even know each other but persist in their regarding me with "extreme ill-will". As I search myself deeply I cannot think of anyone I know personally for whom I feel this way about. I did have an ex for awhile for whom I did indulge in hanging on to a sense of hostility for some long time, to the point of even imagining shooting him and gleefully watching him fall to the ground, but I figured that was hurting me more than him and started praying for him instead. He has since passed away, and I definitely benefitted from letting all my sense of hostility go, even if it didn't benefit him.
I also have a sister who occasionally stirred the flames of anger in me over the years but I still don't wish her any ill. Admittedly, when she made a mountain out of a molehill at the family gathering all those years ago just because a relative who didn't understand the feud wanted to get a picture of us together with our kids, I was quit taken aback. She even quit talking to that relative because I guess somehow she was just supposed to know! And, of course, our illustrious neighbor up the road (and yes, I am being facetious) has got me a bit lathered up a time or two. But I still don't hate him or actively wish for harm or bad things to happen to him, except very briefly at the time he was causing us so much grief. But in general, I figure people who engage in long term hate, anger, and spiteful behavior are not genuinely happy people, and they never will be if they keep feeding the monster.
For to hang on to anger, hatred, and future plans of spiteful and hurtful behaviors is a choice. I have chosen to avoid a few people over time that demonstrated repeatedly dysfunctional behaviors that kept their lives constantly in turmoil, but not because I judge them for it. We'll all figure it out sooner or later, or we won't, but I don't enjoy seeing people living a life of one disaster after another due to choices that have probably become part of their life pattern. It takes great effort to recognize and then consciously change those patterns, and the more entrenched they are, the more effort must be exerted. This I know very well because I have traveled that path myself, and blame no one, not my circumstances, my upbringing, nor any other outside force for what is on my plate. Every day I bump up against my own idiosyncrasies. It's true when they say we are our own worst enemy, at least, that has been my experience.
But what of those who refuse to see their own part in things, and take responsibility? And we can't just ostracize every individual in our life that has not reached this understanding. I guess we could, but I am not willing to as it would impact other relationships that are equally important. In other words, life is also about community, family, neighbors, friends, relatives. They are usually quite a mixed bag, but unless we can opt out the only other solution is to get skilled at maintaining ones own personal integrity in a world long gone mad.
Because I do feel that many people who demonstrate certain behaviors have been seriously traumatized and may not even realize that the hate and anger they feel did not originate with whatever they now find themselves at odds with. These traumas can even go beyond this lifetime. It often boils down to self hatred, although it may be masked and even buried very deeply in the psyche, to the point where they would respond with vehement denial.
Maybe I'm the lucky one, because early on I was quite aware of my own self hatred. They often say you need to love yourself first, but I only learned to love myself because of being able to step into a field that makes all fear, hate, angst, whatever, melt away like a warm spring day. All my life I've been able to tap into this field. Is it my guardian angel, my higher self, my soul group, the Big Momma, or my team of spirit helpers on the other side? I don't know for sure what it is, but the radiant energy emitted is very real. I came to really know how loved I already was, no matter how flawed I saw myself. So no matter how evil, or anti-life the energies become in this reality, I am just a thought away from being able to simultaneously be in this other reality at the same time. Little did I know how important this skill would become over the course of my lifetime. For all I have to do is wake up to feel this imposing anti-life energy that has blanketed the whole of the earth, at least most of it anyway. Very few have been able to escape its grasp or influence.
I can't just not look at it either, for I can feel it regardless of any conscious knowing of what is taking place. On occasion now, when I feel a sense of inner turmoil and I trace it back to its origin, it isn't even something personal at all. I can feel the anxiety of the masses, and on some days it is very strong. As I allow myself to really feel it, allow it to flow through me without judgement, I find it then abates and I feel more at ease, even though nothing has really changed. I guess in a way it's an acknowledgement of what I am picking up. In those moments I call to the energies of nature herself, and I always see this amazing image of what looks like a sandy beach with sparkling turquoise blue waters almost coming alive, swirling around me, calming me, and I feel buoyed in spirit once again. The wave comes in, the wave moves out. I feel the rhythm and music of life and creation herself. She is alive!
The monster we have collectively created out of our unconscious fears, anger, and hatred simply cannot enter such a space. But it must be cultivated. It must be weeded. It must be watered with our tears of joy and love. And it's never too late to start. In fact, I would say better late than never...