Obviously, there is physical ill and sorrow, but there are also hurt feelings, I suppose.
I do not think much of the latter.
It is related to want.
There is grave physical want, and then there is simple desire.
'What do I want?' It does not really matter. If I do not want what is best, I am a fool. Therefore the useful question is: 'What do you think is best?'
It is a matter of ease and easiness. If I were concerned about potential mild discomfiture or discomfort, what I want, what is easy, comfortable, pain-free, effortless, I would never get up in the morning. I would roll about in a wheelchair. I would take the mind-deadening laudanum. God knows it has been suggested, even begged of me on occasion.
Mourning, sorrow, outrage. These are akin, but I can respect them, sympathise, offer aid, company and comfort. 'Hurt?' It does not really matter. Should I fail to do things because I am or may be hurt? That is weakness!
Things are as they are, and if we are 'hurt' it is a matter of great indifference to prevailing circumstances.
Look upon occasions where one is 'hurt'. Someone suggests or mentions something, says something uncomplimentary, questions our judgement, criticises our actions to oneself or to others. And one's reaction is hurt. 'You hurt my feelings!' is the accusation that springs to one's lips. As I always say, and so much comes down to this: Pride is a virtue. Should one's feelings be hurt? If one's honour is questioned, that should result in outrage and challenge. It is a grave matter. If it is less than that, if someone calls me a worthless cripple, for instance, dismisses me in that way, should I be hurt? Or should I look at them with scorn, for they do not know my struggles and heroism. Hurt? The more I think of it, the more I think it is a lack of pride. If they taunt me with recklessness, drunkenness, quarrelsomeness, should I be hurt? I do what I do because I think it best. I can look at them in scorn. Or I can allow them their opinions while disagreeing. Or I can modify my behaviour, if I think it is appropriate. But sit sullenly, feeling 'hurt'? They have likely been honest. Their opinion, expressed is a fact then, a concrete game piece that forms the world, on which one may base other things. It may be wrong, and one may seek to argue, to correct it, to challenge them if it is grievously insulting, such that one may be negatively affected by their opinion. I think of the many things Bat said of me. Ungovernable, mean, weak (physically), peremptory, hot-headed, quarrelsome, impetuous, disliked, grouchy, unrespectable, indiscriminate, drunken, selfish, perverse. Now, should I be 'hurt'? That is part of Bat's analysis of me and of my character. It is a little late to refute it, us both being dead, but I am inclined to amusement and slight disappointment that he did not see me in better light. Also, he is accurate. All those things could surely be argued of me. But I stand by my actions nevertheless. His views do not lessen me, do not cause my identity to falter.
Yes, perhaps one sometimes feels hurt despite oneself. But what is one to do then? There are times when one cannot control one's feelings. Tears of rage, tears of grief. There are times when one simply cannot control it. And then there are two choices, as I see it. Act and challenge, as I do for enemies. Or bow out, disappear, minimise my burden on my friends. 'The soul breasts its own griefs,' Matthew Arnold said, and I am quite likely to quote that again.
True, from one's friends only may one request the indulgence of solace. But even then, those rare moments should be saved for real sorrow, for such does come upon us and it is better then if the kindness of a hand on one's shoulder has not been devalued by triviality and simple weakness.Name: John H. Holliday, DDS.
Word Count: 694
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Nulli Virtute Secundus