Tuesday, April 17, 2007
During my evening hunt for blog material, I stumbled across a "personality test" I fondly recall receiving from a friend via email back in my days as a graduate student. The test, which I found at Snopes.com, is innocent fun, and it reminded me of the good people and good things in my life. And in the process, it caused me to understand something very sad about yesterday's massacres in Blacksburg, Virginia, and to consider myself very fortunate to have encountered the test.
There is no way, thank goodness, for a normal, healthy human being to completely understand the depths of mental illness or depravity that motivated that boy to kill so many people so senselessly. Right now, the bereaved are barely starting to come to grips with what they have lost, and the time for the rest of us to consider causes will come soon enough. But there is something particularly unsettling about those events: We have all had to witness something that we shouldn't have, and to the extent that we have, we have all been harmed by this act.
Notice that everyone seems to be talking about it. And furthermore, there is no way to talk about it and feel any semblance of a normal, happy emotion. This crime spree had this as a motive, I think: to deprive the rest of us of any innocence we might have had that lasted into adulthood, and therefore, of our happiness. Be this due to the murderer's own incapacity to feel that emotion himself or due to envy is immaterial. This has been the result, and I think that in the name of the best within ourselves, we owe it to ourselves to take a step back from this obscene act, and to think about anything one can that is good, for that is what is normal in life, and that is what this person wanted us to forget. This is not escapism. It is an affirmation that life is indeed good.
I do not know whether taking this test will have the same effect on anyone else as it had for me, but I encourage anyone who happens by here to do something, anything, that will for a moment, cause you to forget about Blacksburg and remember what a beautiful thing being alive really is. Do it for yourself, and in honor of the victims of this unspeakable act.
I love my life and will not allow this murderer to tell me that his personal hell, the one he tried to impose on the rest of us, is a "realistic" picture of life. I do grieve for the fallen, but I will not let their murderer touch my soul.
PS: My answers:
- The very good friend who introduced me to my wife.
- My mom.
- My wife.
- My baby brother.
- My good friend, Raymund.