'Misanthropy is a general dislike, distrust, contempt, or hatred of the human species or a disposition to dislike and/or distrust other people's silent consensus about reality. The word comes from the Greek words μίσος (misos, "hatred") and άνθρωπος ( anthrōpos, "man, human being"). A misanthrope is a person who dislikes or distrusts humanity as a general rule.'
If you know me or read this, you probably already know that I have a tendency towards misanthropy. I wouldn't say I HATE humanity, but 'distrust, contempt,' and 'a disposition to distrust other people's silent consensus about reality' pretty much hits the nail right on the old head there.
This blog especially is where much of it comes out. I hope that I am generally a more cheerful person in real life than these rantings would lead you to believe. Sometimes it seems to turn into my own personal 'rants and raves' section, a place for me to dump all the negativity and express my frustrations with the thick soup of teh stoopid in which we all swim.
And if you know anything about me, you can probably guess that I am not a huge fan of weddings.
I was at both yesterday, and the interesting thing, the take-away I got from it--aside from a skull that weighs about 400 pounds and is filled with lead--is just how lovely and beautiful people are. Yes, they are stupid, and selfish and all the other things I rant about. But when people of so many diverse backgrounds and upbringings and lives and belief systems can come together and meet each other and be happy together, celebrating this weird, archaic ritual, it really does me some good.
I met a lot of really good-hearted people yesterday, and despite my disdain for the rituals of the church, the value that I can grok from this event is that community, in the sense of bringing people together to 'commune' with one another is a very important cultural device we have invented for ourselves. I value my alone time, and I am very comfortable being alone. And I think that lots and lots of people are unable to feel okay about themselves unless they are constantly around other people. Whatever; to each his own.
But for a loner like me, I am discovering that maybe every now and then I have a need to come down off the mountain and rub shoulders with my fellow humans. It sounds cheesy as hell as I write it, but the real challenge is to find a way to love people, even for all their faults and stupidity.
We are horrible, clumsy, murderous, sweet, vicious, cruel, adorable buffoons, every one of us.
I walk away, and today I see people in a different light. They are just like me, doing the best they can.