A reader sent me the following message:
I’ve been re-reading some of my favorite stories lately and I wanted to share an excerpt:
“… He was thinking of his old instructor’s swords again, possibly on the heels of the dazed thought that if he had his own blades, he might have a chance under the onslaught. He remembered his instructor continuously caring for his weapons. But a sword shouldn’t be polished daily like that if it wasn’t used. Particles of oil and powder would accumulate in the grooves, in the microscopic edges of the blade. It should only be cleaned, edged and polished if it served regularly. A sword wasn’t a sword when it was kept in a case, whether it tarnished or was kept to a uselessly pristine shine that dulled its true purpose. A sword was only a sword when it killed.”
” … [He] wasn’t a cruel man, and he did not believe he was a bad one, but there was something hard and sharp inside him, something intransigent and dangerous and pure like a steel blade.
“He’d dedicated it entirely to Justice, since it was better than having it cut randomly; and perhaps that one single choice might seem limiting to people who’d been spoilt with choices all their lives, but for him it was the only way, and he would not have it otherwise.”
I thought you might find it interesting! Accepting the parts of ourselves that are “unacceptable” by finding a purpose for them, and finding beauty – brilliance, even – in the uses and ends towards which they can be aimed; it’s something I’ve spent a lot of time mulling over.
I’ve been thinking about something similar even though I never had such a splendid account to relate to. I died with diagnosis. I became aware of my ill-advised ways and realized that – even if my thoughts never change – that I have to walk toward a different goal. And, I have made that goal to use my abilities for education. What hope is there for the psychopath in society if one is unwilling to put a face with a name and a name with words? Why should those in power have all the say regarding our existence when they have no idea what it is like to walk in our shoes?
I started writing out of necessity born from a need to understand the assessment results. I wanted to know what changed. Where I went wrong (not that I went wrong), what my life meant moving forward having a name associated with the traits that I always possessed. Then I moved to a stage of narcissism as others began to read my work and think highly of it. Now, I’ve come to realize that I can use my experiences to help others. I may not have the empathy that others have, but I feel a connection to those that walk the path that I walk. We are abhorred and we are hated. Much of that is justified, but the majority is born from hysteria. I want to use my gifts for justice – not social justice per se – but to help shed light on a condition that, if nothing else, affects me.
This is my afterlife. One day I will die again, but for now I can help myself through helping others. I will never feel anything other than a membership bond with those in my shoes, but I still can make something of this life. I want to make something of this life. And, fate willing, I can create my own destiny in the process.