We are a metaphoric people

We like metaphors because it conceals the bloodiness of truth. It is also called a euphemism, to protect ourselves from seeing the actual gore. We treat our children the way we treat ourselves. Hide them from the realities of life, so when they finally have to face life, they are ill-prepared. Why do we not like exposure? What are we afraid of? Have we gotten so used to hide and seek that we do not know how to face life as it is?

Everywhere we are metaphoric. We are a metaphoric people. Language is one of the fundamental metaphors. It represents a thing, but it is not the thing. And, as smart and cunning as we are, we get mesmerized by the metaphors, by the symbols, a statue, the moon, a bottle of water, the ocean, a tree, a rock, and written patterns with symbolically painted colors.

If we live a lie, we cannot face truth. If we desire comfort, we cannot face truth. If we avoid fear, we cannot face truth. Fearlessness is required, because truth is not guaranteed to be comforting, happy, and nice. We are nice people, and that's why we are cruel. We are willing to kill to maintain our nice lives.

It is nice to be lost in language. It is nice to be lost in a painting. It is nice to avoid seeing ourselves as we are. All that is nice. Yet life isn't nice. Life isn't a category. Life isn't a descriptive or prescriptive phenomenon. Life isn't a statue, yet we have often made it such.

If cruelty is life, then be it, and face it. If we hide behind our niceties, then cruelty is what we breed. If we do not address, directly, earnestly, fundamentally our pressing issues, and resort to metaphoric expressions, because of our attachment to our reputation, our images of a good person, and our “good life”, then the issues will bite our tail, and forever we shall spin, until we are too dizzy to recognize the cause of our confusion. Love is honesty. Love is not hide and seek. Hiding is the work of the cunning. When we face our utter and complete cruelty, then we put a stop to it. That is compassion, which isn't different from honesty and love.


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Cover photo by Aman Upadhyay on Unsplash