Yesterday this time I was sipping my morning coffee and enjoying a little sunbath on my roof. Shorts and T-shirt and sandals, +18 Degrees C, gentle breeze, I entertained fantasies about summer. Right now it is 0 degrees C and blowing 40 to 70 kph (that’s about 25 to 40 mph for my esteemed readers in the good ole USA). It is snowing! Crap! Welcome to the Prairies in springtime, had to change back into long sleeved denim and long pants.
Good piece on “Wrath” over at “Essays in Idleness” this morning. I rather enjoy his occasional revisit to old posts and old thoughts in the light of today. I think of them as “Treasures in the Attic” in some ways the same thoughts find their focus in the old “Tridentine Mass” which I grew up with and in and served in Latin for many years. Treasures put away and forgotten by many because the solemn majesty of the Master is, for the nonce, not the focus of Holy Mother Church. The temporal progressives have regained the upper hand they lost during the pontificate of St. John Paul the Great and Pope Benedict, his worthy successor.
So “Wrath” or just plain anger and how is it different from hate, the favourite sin of the faceless masses of zombie drones worshiping at the alter of mammon. Favourite because it is easy … hate is easy … that’s why so many secular governments and not a few nominally religious governments give it five thumbs up as a means to control and appease the crowds of zombies they choose to call citizens.
Hey Big Boss, the peasants are revolting. Yes, they sure are! Let’s give them something to focus on, let’s see, ummm, it’s Thursday, let’s hate Jews. No, wait! That was last week! OK, this week let’s hate … Christians … yea, thats good – “DEATH TO CHRISTIANS! – DEATH TO CHRISTIANS! whooo-hooo just give ‘er. That’ll keep em busy for a while.
Hey! Hate Christians, Hate Bankers, Hate environmentalists, Hate corporations, Hate your bosses, Hate the 1%’ers, Hate Muslims, Hate women, Hate men, Hate Germans, Hate French, Hate Americans, Hate Australians, Hate the White man, Hate the Black man, hate the Aboriginals, even (God Forbid) Hate Canadians, if you believe that there is a genuine terrorist threat to blow up West Edmonton Mall!. Hate, hate, hate, hate, everywhere hate!. So we are clear on hate, right? Everywhere hate.
The unadulterated desire for evil to befall others simply and only because they are not you, because they are different, and they possibly don’t agree with you, but who really cares about that, eh? Lets just get on with this orgasmic hate thing, It feels so good and it’s so easy, no thought, no worries, just hate. It’s all their fault! What ever “it” is.
Let’s look at wrath – or anger (wrath is kinda anger on steroids). While hate is a simple answer for simple minds, anger is a complex response with multiple aspects and causes. Anger originates in sadness for pain received or wrong done plus the hope of justice and revenge. The angry man hopes to punish, to balance the scales, so to speak, for the wrong done to him.
Both the sadness and the perception that vengeance is possible are necessary to anger. If the wrong is of such a scale that justice and revenge are not believed to be possible then the man just feels sadness. Anger and hatred agree in their affect in that both desire to inflict harm on another, but while hatred wishes evil for evil’s sake without limit or pause, anger on the other hand desires vengeance for the wrong done and is mitigated when it is perceived that justice is satisfied. that the wrong done is matched by the vengeance taken.
Anger is balanced and rational and is a much lesser evil than hatred. As Augustine says, “Hatred is to a beam as anger is to a mote“. And so it is in reality, day to day, we obviously feel hatred towards a “class” but anger towards an “individual”. When a class is “faceless” we feel hatred – nuke ’em all and let God decide.
When we see the object as individuals making personal decisions at our expense it presents as reasoned anger. Anger stems from a perception of a wrong done – to oneself or against us – that is a group of which oneself is a part – for which there is a remedy possible (vengeance). Hence it is possible to feel legitimate anger towards a group of individuals who express hatred towards oneself or one’s group.
For example, anger towards environmentalists who express unconsidered hatred for “all drivers of big trucks”, or bankers and bureaucrats who profit by printing more money which action destroys the life and savings of workers who lack the advantage of being able to print money.
To Be Continued …