The Wisdom of the Sith
Author's Note: I published this early by accident. Here's the finished post!
Running is important to me. Here are some thoughts.
I met below-knee amputee Paralympic snowboarder, Nicole Roundy recently.
Aside from inspiring me with her resilience and perseverance, she related a tale of an aggressive competitor and her internal philosophy towards athletics. She competes against herself, using her energy to propel herself forward.
After reading No More Mister Nice Guy, and learned about passiveness, aggression and assertiveness, I retooled my idea of what aggression is aggression.
Many of us see aggression as wrong, especially in our weak society of "gymtimidation" [link] being a legitimate excuse to switch gyms.
On the flip side, intimidation IS a negative thing. The jerk hitting on your girlfriend and making her uncomfortable after you assert yourself to him... because it's his "right" and she's there... That's intimidation and is out of line. He also needs to man up and look at his own problems about why he's doing that.
So what do we do with our aggression if we can't use it to intimidate others?
Some bottle it up and take it out in a horrible way later in life. You hear a lot of people mention after a school shooting "But he was so niiiiice. *wipes tears* Why did he doooo this?"
I'm sorry to break it to you (and here's some more tissues because you might need them) but he was never nice. He was just hiding everything he didn't want anyone to see. Inside, he stuffed his anger into a small glass bottle, creating a calm, nice demeanor for the world to "like." Then it shattered.
I used to be that guy. Thankfully, when my glass shattered, it wasn't extravagant and bloody, it was taken out in combat sports. Boffer fighting, a foam warfare combat sport, was my anger channel.
Because I'm such an awesome geek, I sought some answers through geekology, and, naturally, Star Wars. The Jedi face aggression with compassion and seek to neutralize it and turn it into light.
The Sith channel their hatred and turn it into power. Palpatine preaching to Anakin "Feel your anger" was him showing Anakin the way to channel your hatred through yourself and turn it into power. I felt aggressive on today's run. At first, my phone dropped out of my pocket, I got frustrated. Then my music kept skipping. Normally I could look past this but after a Tae kwon do tournament this Sunday and possible diet liabilities, my body needs rest.
So I got aggressive and cursed out my phone.
Soon I realized I was exerting frustration at an inanimate object and was looking like a fool. So, like Nicole Roundy and Anakin before me, I felt my anger and channeled it to propel my legs through the run. I finished in a personal record time.
Have you ever sought insight from a fictional world? Write your experience in the comments below ;)