Over the last couple of years, I’ve been slowly learning how acceptance is a method of control. In this case, my definition of acceptance is the ability to recognize your own limitations and be honest about what that means in life. I want to say that this skill is an old person’s virtue, but that is only because I have begun to understand it as an old person.
Forget what you know about satan; the word etymologically signifies any adversary. There are many paths to God, but the Christian method is through submission to Jesus Christ. To not submit is to become satan.
I have been thinking about what methods of growth work for people. I’ve been using a continuum of cooperation and competition as my measure. Some learn and grow and thrive by working with others, while some learn and grow and thrive by working against others. We each have bits and pieces of both.
I am a great team player. Super-cooperative. But I am also very anti-authoritarian. I will work with a team tirelessly, but I do not recognize authority. I value competent leadership, but on an individual basis.
The best way to get me to not do something is to tell me that I’m expected to do it. I am astounded at the number of people who have known me intimately over the years and have been unable to realize that telling me “you’ll do x” basically certifies that I won’t do whatever ‘x’ is.
My engagement with religion has been adversarial ever since I left the nest. I am not a sheep, I am a goat. And while Abrahamic religions demand submission, I do not think a God that is Love would limit the paths by which one can know him. So I fight belief tooth and nail, but I do not not believe.
There’s still a wild gulf of uncertainty. Am I inventing all of this just to rationalize my irrationality? It doesn’t matter, I’ve accepted my nature.
I fell in love a little last night and walked right out without doing anything about it. I have accepted the ease that it happens now, too. Just as I’ve always been mouthy, there have always been certain people who can hook me without even putting a line in the water.
I’ve been my own adversary, refusing to accept the authority of my nature. Cooperating with it has been going much more smoothly.