Radicalism

I haven’t posted in a while. Real life is complex and sometimes frightening. Thinking about issues as troubling and pervasive as feminism in a linear fashion, linear enough to put here anyway, is difficult. I am not really a linear thinker, and while I have studied quite a bit of logic, I find that I am most comfortable departing from it for the sake of lyricism and fanciful hypotheticals. That kind of expression doesn’t post well, I’m afraid. If you let me, I’d compose an entire novel of incomprehensible metaphors.

Nevertheless, I like to think about radicalism, primarily because how aware I am of my dissociation with humanity. I was always quite the radical kind of person. I had a forceful, yet subtle, personality even as a toddler. Being different is something that I seem to cultivate for the sake of it, and something that just comes naturally.

My tendency to be hyper-aware of social norms and find the most pleasure in defying them translated neatly to radicalism. I cannot think of a point in my life that I was not “radical” in some fashion or another. My brand of radicalism was never really a deliberate bucking of trends for the sake of irritating others. I’ve always wanted harmony more than anything, but not at the expense of my own convictions. I’ve always had a complex inner moral code. People tell me that I’m dramatic, but I feel that things I take seriously cannot ever be set aside for the stated goal of joviality or immediate harmony. This translates, of course, into alienating myself from social situations that particularly bother me in their defiance of my principles.

I am an intensely moral person. My acts of defiance and rebellion were always because I perceived the status-quo to be unjust. Even as a Kindergartener, I recall times in which I thought that my teacher was being monumentally hypocritical. This is taken as a sort of egoism, but it’s not really. I’m probably one of the most perfectionist sorts of people one could meet. As harsh as I am in my perception of others (a fact that is not known usually, because I’m more likely to walk away than participate, let alone start, a fight unless I’m cornered or intensely angry), I’m much harsher on myself.

Radical feminism sort of feels like home to me. It translates neatly into the disgust I have with the hollow and materialistic social obsession with abusive sexuality. It jives with my disassociation with normalcy, a fact unalterable by the mere reality of my personality. I think that I was born to be a crusader or a martyr. Not in the self-serving way either. There’s little doubt in my mind that even a fraction of the change I want in the world will be accomplished during my lifetime.

It’s corny, and stupid, but I believe strongly in a concept of God and fate. My “God”, and I use the term extremely loosely, means so much less and more than the typical monotheistic Western cloud-father. I could be delusional, but I do truly think that it is my lot in life to feel alienated most of the time. This dissatisfaction with the status-quo, I think, is such an intrinsic part of me because it is supposed to motivate me to make the change I wish to see in the world, or at least get the ball rolling. I’d die for my cause. I mean that. I’d gladly abandon all sorts of social norms for the sake of my principles, and have already done so, sometimes without even knowing it.

This, I feel, is radicalism. This is what I was born to feel, to do, to want. I feel disassociated with the current state of humanity, and deeply troubled. I am unable to depart from my moral code for any momentary and shallow source of pleasure. If I do, I punish myself, privately, for it. I would rather die now doing what I think I was meant to do than die rich in the lap of luxury at ninety. This is unshakable.

Truly, it’s scary, the force of my own conviction. The more I learn about the mechanisms of the world the more I hurt inside from just a glimpse of the unrelenting and unheard agony of others. I just can’t ignore Pandora’s Box once I opened it. To do so would be killing myself more than any bullet or bomb could.

This is my radicalism. This is my feminism. I’d let it kill me before I’d abandon it. I’d make a victim of myself before I’d close it off in a neat box and put it on the shelf for the sake of cooperating with chauvinists or those that are completely wrong.

I do so not because I hate the world. I love world, I love “God”, I love humanity. I see life where most might see death. I never lost that childish tendency to personify the flowers and the trees and animals. How could I ever deny the humanity of anyone, even my foe? The gap between what I feel the world ought to be, what humanity deserves to be, and what is it so vast that the thought of all that needs to be accomplished is as incomprehensible as the size of the sun to an ant.

But this is my radicalism, my oasis, my masochism, my purpose.

Even if the road is millions of miles long, I’d give my life to take a dozen steps forward.

Advertisements

Posted on September 17, 2008, in 101, Feminism, Ranting. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. What else to say, but <3 ?

    “I’ve always wanted harmony more than anything, but not at the expense of my own convictions. I’ve always had a complex inner moral code. People tell me that I’m dramatic, but I feel that things I take seriously cannot ever be set aside for the stated goal of joviality or immediate harmony. This translates, of course, into alienating myself from social situations that particularly bother me in their defiance of my principles.”

    I get it.

  2. I find that beer makes it possible to not be a radical for a few hours, but I always feel bad about it the next day.

  3. There’s something so heartening, and almost disconcerning, about someone across the other side of the world from me whom I have never met articulating my EXACT thoughts, feelings, and philosophy in such a clear way. Thanks.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: