Struggling with I-Am-Who-I-Ams

Struggling with I-Am-Who-I-Ams

some insomniac musings by The Overlord Bear/Jem De Ocampo

What am I flexing for, anyway?


Most of the time, my self-assertions are lies. And I count boasting and bragging among lying. And I count lording solid facts about myself over everyone among boasting and bragging. And I consider boasting and bragging forms of pride, which I often mix up with love, and I think it’s a miracle that I’m not as popular as most people who do that.

Still, asserting myself has importance. It’s just that it should be a lot subtler than a prideful nut like me likes. Even God Almighty does it that way, or He wouldn’t let Himself be humiliated with that most humiliating punishment of His time and place here on earth. Remember when we tell ourselves stuff like “Knowledge is power” and “With great power comes great responsibility?” Of course, I have to be cautious about giving power to people who want to harm me with their hate for me, but I also have to remember to, if you ask me, be even more cautious about giving power to people who want to stan me with their worship for me. Like, if I grow the stan within, I also grow the hater within, and vice-versa. I should know, because I am a stan and a hater, one who also knows that the Devil’s both, what with stuff like his vehement insistence on having God be the entitled ruler we fools expect Him to be, an insistence which accompanies his massive hatred for God bothering to care for us fools He really doesn’t need to save and grow, let alone in ways that involve being humiliated like us, ways like making us servants entrusted with power that’s more than we deserve.

And speaking of making loving self-assertions, while I do have to expect undergoing loathsome suffering there, I also have to remember to assert those facts about myself, those facts that we also use to justify the loathsome suffering we give me and others, to connect with my fellow fools and offer ourselves, as many as I can, chances to do better according to His will, not to disconnect myself from my fellow fools and wish that they’d be damned to hell. Of course, those chances to do better should be accompanied by proper knowledge of virtue, or they will only be more boasting and bragging and other forms of lying. And believe it or not, we believe to see knowledge, not see to believe knowledge. Otherwise, we wouldn’t be able to believe in blatantly obvious wrong things even with the crystal clear right things right up on our faces. Like, why would we believe sinners like you and me saying “I am God” but not God Almighty Himself saying the same thing, right?

So what makes believing in the crystal clear right things so hard and believing in the blatantly obvious wrong things so easy? Pride. We like to fancy it up with terms like “cognitive dissonance” and “rationalization,” but still, it’s all pride, humility perverted. Both the humble and the proud have ignorance they must deal with, but where the former uses that ignorance as a reason to grow virtuous despite and through it, while the latter uses that ignorance as an excuse to commit sin and consider it virtue. Whether I grow virtuous or commit sin, they’re both understandable, and they’re both accompanied by a complex web of causes, but still, only the former choice, growing virtuous, is of the truth, the painful but still freeing truth that always cherishes and never brags.

And now I have to apply the above reflections and more that I am yet to learn into the rest of my practice as an artist, where self-expression is very emphasized. And then there’s how I have quite the obsession about fiction, which the educated writer that I am considers realer than real life, if the term “creative nonfiction” is any indication. And not only am I obsessed about fiction, I’m particularly obsessed about the stupidest of fiction and its cunning, which tends to be repetitive but works a lot because I let my pride make them look better than they actually are. So yeah, God Almighty keep on helping us learn and do our best, and trust me, I say this not because I’m very faithful, but because I’m very doubtful. So please, whether I like it or not, you’re free to just roast me, but it would be an honor if you’d praise me, especially with constructive honesty.

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