Aggressive Love Quotes

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Love without sacrifice is like theft
Nassim Nicholas Taleb (The Bed of Procrustes: Philosophical and Practical Aphorisms)
No, I don't mean love, when I say patriotism. I mean fear. The fear of the other. And its expressions are political, not poetical: hate, rivalry, aggression.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Left Hand of Darkness (Hainish Cycle, #4))
Don't exist. Live. Get out, explore. Thrive. Challenge authority. Challenge yourself. Evolve. Change forever. Become who you say you always will. Keep moving. Don't stop. Start the revolution. Become a freedom fighter. Become a superhero. Just because everyone doesn't know your name doesn't mean you dont matter. Are you happy? Have you ever been happy? What have you done today to matter? Did you exist or did you live? How did you thrive? Become a chameleon-fit in anywhere. Be a rockstar-stand out everywhere. Do nothing, do everything. Forget everything, remember everyone. Care, don't just pretend to. Listen to everyone. Love everyone and nothing at the same time. Its impossible to be everything,but you can't stop trying to do it all. All I know is that I have no idea where I am right now. I feel like I am in training for something, making progress with every step I take. I fear standing still. It is my greatest weakness. I talk big, but often don't follow through. That's my biggest problem. I don't even know what to think right now. It's about time I start to take a jump. Fuck starting to take. Just jump-over everything. Leap. It's time to be aggressive. You've started to speak your mind, now keep going with it, but not with the intention of sparking controversy or picking a germane fight. Get your gloves on, it's time for rebirth. There IS no room for the nice guys in the history books. THIS IS THE START OF A REVOLUTION. THE REVOLUTION IS YOUR LIFE. THE GOAL IS IMMORTALITY. LET'S LIVE, BABY. LET'S FEEL ALIVE AT ALL TIMES. TAKE NO PRISONERS. HOLD NO SOUL UNACCOUNTABLE, ESPECIALLY NOT YOUR OWN. IF SOMETHING DOESN'T HAPPEN, IT'S YOUR FAULT. Make this moment your reckoning. Your head has been held under water for too long and now it is time to rise up and take your first true breath. Do everything with exact calculation, nothing without meaning. Do not make careful your words, but make no excuses for what you say. Fuck em' all. Set a goal for everyday and never be tired.
Brian Krans (A Constant Suicide)
He's looking so deeply into my eyes that I'm surprised I haven't buckled under the intensity and I realize then, right in this moment I realize that everything about him is intense. Nothing about him is manageable or easy to compartmentalize. He's too much. Everything about him is too much. His emotions, his actions, his anger, his aggression. His love.
Tahereh Mafi (Unravel Me (Shatter Me, #2))
Think of two people, living together day after day, year after year, in this small space, standing elbow to elbow cooking at the same small stove, squeezing past each other on the narrow stairs, shaving in front of the same small bathroom mirror, constantly jogging, jostling, bumping against each other’s bodies by mistake or on purpose, sensually, aggressively, awkwardly, impatiently, in rage or in love – think what deep though invisible tracks they must leave, everywhere, behind them!
Christopher Isherwood (A Single Man)
Man must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression, and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love.
Martin Luther King Jr.
Few in this world are ever simply nasty; those who hurt us are themselves in pain. The appropriate response is hence never cynicism nor aggression but, at the rare moments one can manage it, always love.
Alain de Botton (The Course of Love)
We live in a world where most people still subscribe to the belief that shame is a good tool for keeping people in line. Not only is this wrong, but it’s dangerous. Shame is highly correlated with addiction, violence, aggression, depression, eating disorders, and bullying.
Brené Brown (Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead)
When you open yourself to the continually changing, impermanent, dynamic nature of your own being and of reality, you increase your capacity to love and care about other people and your capacity to not be afraid. You're able to keep your eyes open, your heart open, and your mind open. And you notice when you get caught up in prejudice, bias, and aggression. You develop an enthusiasm for no longer watering those negative seeds, from now until the day you die. And, you begin to think of your life as offering endless opportunities to start to do things differently.
Pema Chödrön (Practicing Peace in Times of War)
She frowned. “I did nothing to arouse you.” He clenched his jaw, his stare growing more aggressive. “You breathed.
Shayla Black (Possess Me at Midnight (Doomsday Brethren, #3))
We are only just beginning to understand the power of love because we are just beginning to understand the weakness of force and aggression.
B.F. Skinner (Walden Two)
Perhaps the easiest people to fall in love with are those about whom we know nothing. Romances are never as pure as those we imagine during long train journeys, as we secretly contemplate a beautiful person who is gazing out of the window – a perfect love story interrupted only when the beloved looks back into the carriage and starts up a dull conversation about the excessive price of the on-board sandwiches with a neighbour or blows her nose aggressively into a handkerchief.
Alain de Botton (On Love)
When I really love someone, I can only show it by making aggressive and bad-taste remarks
Slavoj Žižek
They want us to be afraid. They want us to be afraid of leaving our homes. They want us to barricade our doors and hide our children. Their aim is to make us fear life itself! They want us to hate. They want us to hate 'the other'. They want us to practice aggression and perfect antagonism. Their aim is to divide us all! They want us to be inhuman. They want us to throw out our kindness. They want us to bury our love and burn our hope. Their aim is to take all our light! They think their bricked walls will separate us. They think their damned bombs will defeat us. They are so ignorant they don’t understand that my soul and your soul are old friends. They are so ignorant they don’t understand that when they cut you I bleed. They are so ignorant they don’t understand that we will never be afraid, we will never hate and we will never be silent for life is ours!
Kamand Kojouri
I took a step toward her. "It is my right to reside in my own mind. It is my right," I said. "It is my right to be unsociable and it is my right to be unpleasant to be around. Do you ever listen to yourself? This is crazy, that is crazy, everything is crazy to you. By whose measure? Well, it is my right to be crazy, as you love to say so much. I have no shame. I have felt many things in my life, but shame is not among them." The volume of my voice caused me to stand on my tiptoes. I could not remember yelling like this, ever. "You may think that I have an obligation to you but I assure you that us being thrown together in this arbitrary arrangement does not cohesion make. I have never had less of an obligation to anyone in my life, you aggressively ordinary woman.
Carmen Maria Machado (Her Body and Other Parties: Stories)
The abuser’s mood changes are especially perplexing. He can be a different person from day to day, or even from hour to hour. At times he is aggressive and intimidating, his tone harsh, insults spewing from his mouth, ridicule dripping from him like oil from a drum. When he’s in this mode, nothing she says seems to have any impact on him, except to make him even angrier. Her side of the argument counts for nothing in his eyes, and everything is her fault. He twists her words around so that she always ends up on the defensive. As so many partners of my clients have said to me, “I just can’t seem to do anything right.” At other moments, he sounds wounded and lost, hungering for love and for someone to take care of him. When this side of him emerges, he appears open and ready to heal. He seems to let down his guard, his hard exterior softens, and he may take on the quality of a hurt child, difficult and frustrating but lovable. Looking at him in this deflated state, his partner has trouble imagining that the abuser inside of him will ever be back. The beast that takes him over at other times looks completely unrelated to the tender person she now sees. Sooner or later, though, the shadow comes back over him, as if it had a life of its own. Weeks of peace may go by, but eventually she finds herself under assault once again. Then her head spins with the arduous effort of untangling the many threads of his character, until she begins to wonder whether she is the one whose head isn’t quite right.
Lundy Bancroft (Why Does He Do That?: Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men)
Nonviolence is the answer to the crucial political and moral questions of our time: the need for man to overcome oppression and violence without resorting to oppression and violence. Man must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love.
Martin Luther King Jr.
Femininity is wearing shoes that make it difficult to run, skirts that inhibit movement, and underclothes that interfere with blood circulation. It can hardly be coincidental that the clothes men find most flattering on a woman are precisely those that make it most difficult for her to defend herself against aggression.
Suzanne Brøgger (Deliver Us From Love)
Often the narcissist believes that other people are "faking it", leveraging emotional displays to achieve a goal. He is convinced that their ostensible "feelings" are grounded in ulterior, non-emotional motives. Faced with other people's genuine emotions, the narcissist becomes suspicious and embarrassed. He feels compelled to avoid emotion-tinged situations, or worse, experiences surges of almost uncontrollable aggression in the presence of expressed sentiments. They remind him how imperfect he is and how poorly equipped.
Sam Vaknin (Malignant Self-Love: Narcissism Revisited)
Our brains are made for love. Not fear. Not performance. Not aggression. But LOVE.
Caroline Leaf
I disagree.” She squeezed lovingly. “Your dad has always supported you. All of this negativity, this pent-up aggression and self-loathing—” “I hardly loathe myself. Have you seen my ass?
Darynda Jones (Third Grave Dead Ahead (Charley Davidson, #3))
To be chosen as the Beloved of God is something radically different. Instead of excluding others, it includes others. Instead of rejecting others as less valuable, it accepts others in their own uniqueness. It is not a competitive, but a compassionate choice. Our minds have great difficulty in coming to grips with such a reality. Maybe our minds will never understand it. Perhaps it is only our hearts that can accomplish this. Every time we hear about 'chosen people', 'chosen talents', or 'chosen friends', we almost automatically start thinking about elites and find ourselves not far from feelings of jealousy, anger, or resentment. Not seldom has the perception of others as being chosen led to aggression, violence, and war.
Henri J.M. Nouwen (Life of the Beloved: Spiritual Living in a Secular World)
I feel ashamed that so many of us cannot imagine a better way to do things than locking children up all day in cells instead of letting them grow up knowing their families, mingling with the world, assuming real obligations, striving to be independent and self-reliant and free.
John Taylor Gatto
Love, I would later conclude, was all things to all people. Love was the breaking and healing of hearts. Love was misunderstood, love was faith, love was the promise of now that became hope for the future. Love was a rhythm, a resonance, a reverberation. Love was awkward and foolish, it was aggressive and simple and possessed of so many indefinable qualities it could never be conveyed in language. Love was being. The same gravity that relentlessly pulled at me was defied as I rose into something that became everything.
R.J. Ellory
He's too much. Everything about him is too much. His emotions, his actions, his anger, his aggression. His love.
Tahereh Mafi
I like my hair messy. My love wild. And my sex aggressive. But I’m still a sensitive woman, just with passion.
S. Harrison
We need to imagine the turmoil, disappointment, worry and sheer confusion in people who may outwardly appear merely aggressive.
The School of Life (Relationships)
Joy gives us strength and confidence. Love pushes us to try harder and never give up. Fear clouds our judgment or holds us back. Sorrow strips us of our energy and hope. Anger makes us reckless, or too aggressive.
Shannon Messenger (Neverseen (Keeper of the Lost Cities, #4))
THE MYTHS ABOUT ABUSERS 1. He was abused as a child. 2. His previous partner hurt him. 3. He abuses those he loves the most. 4. He holds in his feelings too much. 5. He has an aggressive personality. 6. He loses control. 7. He is too angry. 8. He is mentally ill. 9. He hates women. 10. He is afraid of intimacy and abandonment. 11. He has low self-esteem. 12. His boss mistreats him. 13. He has poor skills in communication and conflict resolution. 14. There are as many abusive women as abusive men. 15. His abusiveness is as bad for him as for his partner. 16. He is a victim of racism. 17. He abuses alcohol or drugs.
Lundy Bancroft (Why Does He Do That?: Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men)
Jerusalem! My Love,My Town I wept until my tears were dry I prayed until the candles flickered I knelt until the floor creaked I asked about Mohammed and Christ Oh Jerusalem, the fragrance of prophets The shortest path between earth and sky Oh Jerusalem, the citadel of laws A beautiful child with fingers charred and downcast eyes You are the shady oasis passed by the Prophet Your streets are melancholy Your minarets are mourning You, the young maiden dressed in black Who rings the bells at the Nativity Church, On sunday morning? Who brings toys for the children On Christmas eve? Oh Jerusalem, the city of sorrow A big tear wandering in the eye Who will halt the aggression On you, the pearl of religions? Who will wash your bloody walls? Who will safeguard the Bible? Who will rescue the Quran? Who will save Christ, From those who have killed Christ? Who will save man? Oh Jerusalem my town Oh Jerusalem my love Tomorrow the lemon trees will blossom And the olive trees will rejoice Your eyes will dance The migrant pigeons will return To your sacred roofs And your children will play again And fathers and sons will meet On your rosy hills My town The town of peace and olives
نزار قباني
Emotions are the lowest form of consciousness. Emotional actions are the most contracted, narrowing, dangerous form of behavior. The romantic poetry and fiction of the last 200 years has quite blinded us to the fact that emotions are an active and harmful form of stupor. Any peasant can tell you that. Beware of emotions. Any child can tell you that. Watch out for the emotional person. He is a lurching lunatic. Emotions are caused by biochemical secretions in the body to serve during the state of acute emergency. An emotional person is a blind, crazed maniac. Emotions are addictive and narcotic and stupefacient. Do not trust anyone who comes on emotional. What are the emotions? In a book entitled Interpersonal Diagnosis of Personality, written when I was a psychologist, I presented classifications of emotions and detailed descriptions of their moderate and extreme manifestations. Emotions are all based on fear. [...] The emotional person cannot think; he cannot perform any effective game action (except in acts of physical aggression and strength). The emotional person is turned off sensually. His body is a churning robot. [...] The only state in which we can learn, harmonize, grow, merge, join, understand is the absence of emotion. This is called bliss or ecstasy, attained through centering the emotions. [...] Conscious love is not an emotion; it is serene merging with yourself, with other people, with other forms of energy. Love cannot exist in an emotional state. [...] The great kick of the mystic experience, the exultant, ecstatic hit, is the sudden relief from emotional pressure. Did you imagine that there could be emotions in heaven? Emotions are closely tied to ego games. Check your emotions at the door to paradise.
Timothy Leary (The Politics of Ecstasy)
Yeah, she's right here. She's in the shower, in fact…Oh, Jack! I told Grace the funniest joke about the British invading her hoo—Wait, what?…Hold on…Grace, Jack would like you to know that he has seen the pictures and he thinks you were pointing that shrimp at him far too aggressively…No, she isn't acknowledging you. She's now banging her head against the shower tiles…Oops, now she's glaring at me…she's turning off the shower, Jack…she's coming towards me…she's naked, Jack…and angry…she's naked and angry, Jack…you would probably love angry, naked Grace. It's something to see. She's hitting me, Jack…I think she's going to take the phone away from…
Alice Clayton (The Unidentified Redhead (Redhead, #1))
I knew she loved me, but I wanted to hear it. The more she rejected me, the more aggressively I fought to tear down her walls. I pushed too far sometimes … like the camping trip. I tried to prove to her that she wasn’t as autonomous as she thought. I wanted to show her that it was okay to be vulnerable and to want me.
Tarryn Fisher (Thief (Love Me with Lies, #3))
Why do women love to read about sexually aggressive billionaire bad boy alpha males but condemn the same behavior in real life?
Oliver Markus Malloy (Inside The Mind of an Introvert)
The growing number of gated communities in our nation is but one example of the obsession with safety. With guards at the gate, individuals still have bars and elaborate internal security systems. Americans spend more than thirty billion dollars a year on security. When I have stayed with friends in these communities and inquired as to whether all the security is in response to an actual danger I am told “not really," that it is the fear of threat rather than a real threat that is the catalyst for an obsession with safety that borders on madness. Culturally we bear witness to this madness every day. We can all tell endless stories of how it makes itself known in everyday life. For example, an adult white male answers the door when a young Asian male rings the bell. We live in a culture where without responding to any gesture of aggression or hostility on the part of the stranger, who is simply lost and trying to find the correct address, the white male shoots him, believing he is protecting his life and his property. This is an everyday example of madness. The person who is really the threat here is the home owner who has been so well socialized by the thinking of white supremacy, of capitalism, of patriarchy that he can no longer respond rationally. White supremacy has taught him that all people of color are threats irrespective of their behavior. Capitalism has taught him that, at all costs, his property can and must be protected. Patriarchy has taught him that his masculinity has to be proved by the willingness to conquer fear through aggression; that it would be unmanly to ask questions before taking action. Mass media then brings us the news of this in a newspeak manner that sounds almost jocular and celebratory, as though no tragedy has happened, as though the sacrifice of a young life was necessary to uphold property values and white patriarchal honor. Viewers are encouraged feel sympathy for the white male home owner who made a mistake. The fact that this mistake led to the violent death of an innocent young man does not register; the narrative is worded in a manner that encourages viewers to identify with the one who made the mistake by doing what we are led to feel we might all do to “protect our property at all costs from any sense of perceived threat. " This is what the worship of death looks like.
bell hooks (All About Love: New Visions)
Julie marched over to Matt. She stood in front of him and crossed her arms. “Lift up your sweatshirt.” Matt rolled his eyes. “God, you really know how to turn a guy on.” Julie didn’t budge. “If I was trying to turn you on, I could do better than that. Now, lift up your sweatshirt.” Matt looked up at her and tried to look serious. “Julie, I’m completely offended that you have so little faith in my honesty. I thought at this point in our friendship that you would at least—” “Get up.” Julie leaned over and shut his laptop. “Get up!” she said again. “You’re being ridiculous,” Matt said laughing, but he stood up. “I trust you implicitly, and it wouldn’t kill you to show me the same respect.” “Show me!” Matt sidestepped the chair and took a few steps backward. “You have quite the attitude today. Suspicious and mean.” Julie took a step forward, causing Matt to continue backing away. “Lift up your shirt.” “Look, I appreciate an aggressive woman, but this is really getting weird.” Julie grabbed his sweatshirt by the waist cuff and lifted it up with one hand, as she pulled down his T-shirt with the other. Matt put his hands over hers, lightly protesting, but she refused to let go. “Aha!” She squinted at his shirt. “OK, I don’t even know what this is, but it’s definitely geeky.
Jessica Park (Flat-Out Love (Flat-Out Love, #1))
Tenderness and Rot Tenderness and rot share a border. And rot is an aggressive neighbor whose iridescence keeps creeping over. No lessons can be drawn from this however. One is not two countries. One is not meat corrupting. It is important to stay sweet and loving.
Kay Ryan
Everyone who loves pro basketball assumes it's a little fixed. We all think the annual draft lottery is probably rigged, we all accept that the league aggressively wants big market teams to advance deep into the playoffs, and we all concede that certain marquee players are going to get preferential treatment for no valid reason. The outcomes of games aren't predeteremined or scripted but there are definitely dark forces who play with our reality. There are faceless puppet masters who pull strings and manipulate the purity of justice. It's not necessarily a full-on conspiracy, but it's certainly not fair. And that's why the NBA remains the only game that matters: Pro basketball is exactly like life.
Chuck Klosterman (Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs: A Low Culture Manifesto)
The element of truth behind all this, which people are so ready to disavow, is that men are not gentle creatures who want to be loved, and who at the most can defend themselves if they are attacked; they are, on the contrary, creatures among whose instinctual endowments is to be reckoned a powerful share of aggressiveness.
Sigmund Freud (Civilization and Its Discontents)
Don't get me wrong. I love to be alone. When I am by myself, I get to create my own version of reality where I am the popular girl and really pretty, and friends can't wait to talk to me. -Madisyn
Tara Michener (No Longer Besties: And Other Assorted Teenage Drama)
If she’d been smart enough to say, Your money is tempting but wow are you strange; I am too but let me just add that something does not feel right here. Something feels aggressively odd on a next-level realm I had not previously imagined, in terms of foreboding discomfort.
Alissa Nutting (Made for Love)
She was delicately morbid in all her gestures, sensitive, arrogant, vulnerable to flattery. She veered between extravagant outbursts of opinion and sudden, uncertain halts, during which she seemed to look to him for approval. She was in love with the idea of intelligence, and she overestimated her own. Her sense of the world, though she presented it aggressively, could be, he sensed, snatched out from under her with little or no trouble. She said, “I hope you are a savage.
Mary Gaitskill (Bad Behavior)
A man worth being with is one… That never lies to you Is kind to people that have hurt him A person that respects another’s life That has manners and shows people respect That goes out of his way to help people That feels every person, no matter how difficult, deserves compassion Who believes you are the most beautiful person he has ever met Who brags about your accomplishments with pride Who talks to you about anything and everything because no bad news will make him love you less That is a peacemaker That will see you through illness Who keeps his promises Who doesn’t blame others, but finds the good in them That raises you up and motivates you to reach for the stars That doesn’t need fame, money or anything materialistic to be happy That is gentle and patient with children Who won’t let you lie to yourself; he tells you what you need to hear, in order to help you grow Who lives what he says he believes in Who doesn’t hold a grudge or hold onto the past Who doesn’t ask his family members to deliberately hurt people that have hurt him Who will run with your dreams That makes you laugh at the world and yourself Who forgives and is quick to apologize Who doesn’t betray you by having inappropriate conversations with other women Who doesn’t react when he is angry, decides when he is sad or keep promises he doesn’t plan to keep Who takes his children’s spiritual life very seriously and teaches by example Who never seeks revenge or would ever put another person down Who communicates to solve problems Who doesn’t play games or passive aggressively ignores people to hurt them Who is real and doesn’t pretend to be something he is not Who has the power to free you from yourself through his positive outlook Who has a deep respect for women and treats them like a daughter of God Who doesn’t have an ego or believes he is better than anyone Who is labeled constantly by people as the nicest person they have ever met Who works hard to provide for the family Who doesn’t feel the need to drink alcohol to have a good time, smoke or do drugs Who doesn't have to hang out a bar with his friends, but would rather spend his time with his family Who is morally free from sin Who sees your potential to be great Who doesn't think a woman's place has to be in the home; he supports your life mission, where ever that takes you Who is a gentleman Who is honest and lives with integrity Who never discusses your private business with anyone Who will protect his family Who forgives, forgets, repairs and restores When you find a man that possesses these traits then all the little things you don’t have in common don’t matter. This is the type of man worth being grateful for.
Shannon L. Alder
The first and foremost instinct of humans is neither sex nor aggression. It is to seek contact and comforting connection.
Sue Johnson (Love Sense: The Revolutionary New Science of Romantic Relationships)
Love was the breaking and healing of hearts. Love was the misunderstood. Love was faith; love was the promise of now that became hope for the future. Love was a rhythm, a resonance, a reverberation. Love was awkward and foolish, it was aggressive and simple, possessed of so many indefinable qualities that it could never be conveyed in language. Love was being.
R.J. Ellory (A Quiet Belief in Angels)
Nobody could hold the same place in your heart as your sister. Love or hate her, she was the only person who grew up exactly like you, who knew the secrets of your household—the laughter that only the walls of your house contained or the screaming at a level low enough the neighbors couldn’t hear, the passive aggressive compliments or the little put-downs. Only your sister could know how it felt to grow up in the house that made you you.
Jessica Taylor (A Map for Wrecked Girls)
What had survived - maybe all that had survived of Trism - was Liir's sense of him. A catalog of impressions that arose from time to time, unbidden and often upsetting. From the sandy smell of his sandy hair to the locked grip of his muscles as they had wrestled in sensuous aggression - unwelcome nostalgia. Trism lived in Liir's heart like a full suit of clothes in a wardrobe, dress habillards maybe, hollow and real at once. The involuntary memory of the best of Trism's glinting virtues sometimes kicked up unquietable spasms of longing.
Gregory Maguire (Out of Oz (The Wicked Years, #4))
The other aspect of those weekday-evening trips he loved was the light itself, how it filled the train like something living as the cars rattled across the bridge, how it washed the weariness from his seatmates' faces and revealed them as they were when they first came to the country, when they were young and America seemed conquerable. He'd watch that kind light suffuse the car like syrup, watch it smudge furrows from foreheads, slick gray hairs into gold, gentle the aggressive shine from cheap fabrics into something lustrous and fine. And then the sun would drift, the car rattling uncaringly away from it, and the world would return to its normal sad shapes and colors, the people to their normal sad state, a shift as cruel and abrupt as if it had been made by a sorcerer's wand.
Hanya Yanagihara (A Little Life)
If I could fall in love with a girl, it’d be her. Those ifs are dangerous. You try them on in your head like dresses, so easy to slide in and out of. If I kissed girls, I’d kiss her. If we kissed, it’d go like this. At some point I dropped the if like a slip and just wore the feeling, nothing between it and my skin. When I kiss her. When it happens. All of it took place in my head, in silence, locked tight in skull bone and the frantic synaptic whispers between neurons, no clues popping out except the passive-aggressive haircut, the incriminating poem. That’s the problem with writers. Too much imagination. The greater part of me knew it couldn’t be real, but the hopeful part, which is more concentrated and condensed, rich in nine essential delusions, thought: It’s not all in your head.
Leah Raeder (Black Iris)
Gentleness is not apathy but is an aggressive expression of how we view people. We see people as so valuable that we deal with them in gentleness, fearing the slightest damage to one for whom Christ died. To be apathetic is to turn people over to mean and destructive elements, to truly love people cause for us to be aggressively gentle.
Gayle D. Erwin (Spirit Style)
There are moments in every relationship that define when two people start to fall in love. A first glance A first smile A first kiss A first fall… (I remove the Darth Vader house shoes from my satchel and look down at them.) You were wearing these during one of those moments. One of the moments I first started to fall in love with you. The way you gave me butterflies that morning Had absolutely nothing to do with anyone else, and everything to do with you. I was falling in love with you that morning because of you. (I take the next item out of the satchel. When I pull it out and look up, she brings her hands to her mouth in shock.) This ugly little gnome With his smug little grin… He's the reason I had an excuse to invite you into my house. Into my life. You took a lot of aggression out on him over those next few months. I would watch from my window as you would kick him over every time you walked by him. Poor little guy. You were so tenacious. That feisty, aggressive, strong-willed side of you…. The side of you that refused to take crap from this concrete gnome? The side of you that refused to take crap from me? I fell in love with that side of you because of you. (I set the gnome down on the stage and grab the CD) This is your favorite CD ‘Layken’s shit.’ Although now I know you intended for shit to be possessive, rather than descriptive. The banjo started playing through the speakers of your car and I immediately recognized my favorite band. Then when I realized it was your favorite band, too? The fact that these same lyrics inspired both of us? I fell in love with that about you. That had absolutely nothing to do with anyone else. I fell in love with that about you because of you. (I take a slip of paper out of the satchel and hold it up. When I look at her, I see Eddie slide her a napkin. I can’t tell from up here, but that can only mean she’s crying.) This is a receipt I kept. Only because the item I purchased that night was on the verge of ridiculous. Chocolate milk on the rocks? Who orders that? You were different, and you didn’t care. You were being you. A piece of me fell in love with you at that moment, because of you. This? (I hold up another sheet of paper.) This I didn’t really like so much. It’s the poem you wrote about me. The one you titled 'mean?' I don’t think I ever told you… but you made a zero. And then I kept it to remind myself of all the things I never want to be to you. (I pull her shirt from my bag. When I hold it into the light, I sigh into the microphone.) This is that ugly shirt you wear. It doesn’t really have anything to do with why I fell in love with you. I just saw it at your house and thought I’d steal it.
Colleen Hoover (Point of Retreat (Slammed, #2))
On Generosity On our own, we conclude: there is not enough to go around we are going to run short of money of love of grades of publications of sex of beer of members of years of life we should seize the day seize our goods seize our neighbours goods because there is not enough to go around and in the midst of our perceived deficit you come you come giving bread in the wilderness you come giving children at the 11th hour you come giving homes to exiles you come giving futures to the shut down you come giving easter joy to the dead you come – fleshed in Jesus. and we watch while the blind receive their sight the lame walk the lepers are cleansed the deaf hear the dead are raised the poor dance and sing we watch and we take food we did not grow and life we did not invent and future that is gift and gift and gift and families and neighbours who sustain us when we did not deserve it. It dawns on us – late rather than soon- that you “give food in due season you open your hand and satisfy the desire of every living thing.” By your giving, break our cycles of imagined scarcity override our presumed deficits quiet our anxieties of lack transform our perceptual field to see the abundance………mercy upon mercy blessing upon blessing. Sink your generosity deep into our lives that your muchness may expose our false lack that endlessly receiving we may endlessly give so that the world may be made Easter new, without greedy lack, but only wonder, without coercive need but only love, without destructive greed but only praise without aggression and invasiveness…. all things Easter new….. all around us, toward us and by us all things Easter new. Finish your creation, in wonder, love and praise. Amen.
Walter Brueggemann
The commandment, 'Love thy neighbour as thyself', is the strongest defence against human aggressiveness and an excellent example of the unpsychological [expectations] of the cultural super-ego. The commandment is impossible to fulfil; such an enormous inflation of love can only lower its value, not get rid of the difficulty. Civilization pays no attention to all this; it merely admonishes us that the harder it is to obey the precept the more meritorious it is to do so. But anyone who follows such a precept in present-day civilization only puts himself at a disadvantage vis-a-vis the person who disregards it. What a potent obstacle to civilization aggressiveness must be, if the defence against it can cause as much unhappiness as aggressiveness itself! 'Natural' ethics, as it is called, has nothing to offer here except the narcissistic satisfaction of being able to think oneself better than others. At this point the ethics based on religion introduces its promises of a better after-life. But so long as virtue is not rewarded here on earth, ethics will, I fancy, preach in vain. I too think it quite certain that a real change in the relations of human beings to possessions would be of more help in this direction than any ethical commands; but the recognition of this fact among socialists has been obscured and made useless for practical purposes by a fresh idealistic misconception of human nature.
Sigmund Freud (Civilization and Its Discontents)
Christianity was not meant to be a weapon or an argument or a show of force or a political tool. Or an act of aggression or coercion. It was never meant to be a cause or a prop for a cause. Or something to pacify and make thousands go to bed happy and unthinking. It was meant to be a challenge, yes, but that challenge to a second life was meant to be laced with kindness. If someone forces you to choose between God is holy and God is love choose God is love because holiness without love translates into tyranny.
Murray Pura
If you use sarcasm, ridicule, teasing, pinching, tickling, or barbed kidding at times, make a commitment to cease using these passive-aggressive weapons against your partner or anyone.
David Richo (How to Be an Adult in Relationships: The Five Keys to Mindful Loving)
The love object occupies the thoughts of the person diagnosed as 'in love' all the time despite the probability that very little is actually known about it. To it are ascribed all qualities considered by the obsessed as good, regardless of whether the object in question possesses those qualities in any degree. Expectations are set up which no human being could fulfill. Thus the object chosen plays a special role in relation to the go of the obsessed, who decided that he or she is the right or the only person for him. In the case of a male this notion may sanction a degree of directly aggressive behavior either in pursuing the object or driving off competition.
Germaine Greer (The Female Eunuch)
Patriotism is the wholesome, constructive love of one’s land and people. Nationalism is the unhealthy love of one’s government, accompanied by the aggressive desire to put down others – which becomes in deracinated modern men a substitute for religious faith. Patriotism is an appropriate, indeed necessary, sentiment for people who wish to preserve their freedom; nationalism is not.
Clyde N. Wilson
There seems to be a fear that if men are raised to be people of integrity, people who can love, they will be unable to be forceful and act violently if needed.... We see that females that are raised with the traits any person of integrity embodies can act with tenderness, with assertiveness, and with aggression if and when aggression is needed.
bell hooks (The Will to Change: Men, Masculinity, and Love)
The argument has long been made that we humans are by nature compassionate and empathic despite the occasional streak of meanness, but torrents of bad news throughout history have contradicted that claim, and little sound science has backed it. But try this thought experiment. Imagine the number of opportunities people around the world today might have to commit an antisocial act, from rape or murder to simple rudeness and dishonesty. Make that number the bottom of a fraction. Now for the top value you put the number of such antisocial acts that will actually occur today. That ratio of potential to enacted meanness holds at close to zero any day of the year. And if for the top value you put the number of benevolent acts performed in a given day, the ratio of kindness to cruelty will always be positive. (The news, however, comes to us as though that ratio was reversed.) Harvard's Jerome Kagan proposes this mental exercise to make a simple point about human nature: the sum total of goodness vastly outweighs that of meanness. 'Although humans inherit a biological bias that permits them to feel anger, jealousy, selfishness and envy, and to be rude, aggressive or violent,' Kagan notes, 'they inherit an even stronger biological bias for kindness, compassion, cooperation, love and nurture – especially toward those in need.' This inbuilt ethical sense, he adds, 'is a biological feature of our species.
Daniel Goleman (Social Intelligence: The New Science of Human Relationships)
By not saying “I” before “love you,” he’s making it more casual. Seriously, “love you” and “I love you” are different. Same team, different players. “Love you” isn’t as forward or aggressive as “I love you.” “Love you” can slip up on you, sure, but it doesn’t make an in-your-face slam dunk. More like a nice jump shot.
Angie Thomas (The Hate U Give)
I still feel like teenage girls are not taken seriously by the culture at large, especially not their darker or more complicated feelings—of aggression, desire, ambition. To me, these feelings and drives are so fundamental to girlhood and to womanhood, and I love exploring them. And trying to give voice to them as best I can. I think women are always trying to figure out their own adolescence. We never stop.
Megan Abbott
Everyone has it in them to express themselves that fundamental thing that they know they are inside. That rather beautiful afraid person. Which might get translated into aggression, or silence, or shyness, or all kinds of other things. But inside we know that we are huggable and lovable, and we want to love and be loved. That person is yearning for fulfillment. To be the person they know they can be and that’s a constant journey; that’s a process. It’s not acquiring about this thing and then that thing, getting to this place, learning this technique, and finding out how this works. It’s about the fact that other people are always more interesting than oneself. Let’s forget what successful people have in common, if there’s a thing unsuccessful people have in common it’s that they talk about themselves all the time.
Stephen Fry
Denise decided a long time ago that it is acceptable for men to use aggression toward Marianne as a way of expressing themselves. As a child Marianne resisted, but now she simply detaches, as if it isn’t of any interest to her, which in a way it isn’t. Denise considers this a symptom of her daughter’s frigid and unlovable personality. She believes Marianne lacks “warmth,” by which she means the ability to beg for love from people who hate her.
Sally Rooney (Normal People)
Fine! He is being passive aggressive with me, and it's gonna backfire; I'm gonna be active friendly.
Natalya Vorobyova (Better to be able to love than to be loveable)
Side note: is anyone else grateful social media wasn’t a thing when they were a teenager? It’s like Draco Malfoy and all three Heathers smooshed into one invisible organism that thrives on Internet memes and passive aggression.
Brittany Gibbons (Fat Girl Walking: Sex, Food, Love, and Being Comfortable in Your Skin...Every Inch of It)
You don't even have a cat or a dog or anything?" "You think I should?" George asks, a bit aggressive. The poor old guy doesn't have anything to love, he thinks Kenny is thinking. "Hell, no! Didn't Baudelaire say they're liable to turn into demons and take over your life?
Christopher Isherwood (A Single Man)
It was good to be a stranger in a land when you felt aggressive and acquisitive, but when you began to weave your horizons into some kind of shelter it was good to know that hands you loved had helped in their spinning - made you feel as if the threads would hold together better.
Zelda Fitzgerald (Save Me the Waltz)
To think of the Midwest as a whole as anything other than beautiful is to ignore the extraordinary power of the land. The lushness of the grass and trees in August, the roll of the hills (far less of the Midwest is flat than outsiders seem to imagine), the rich smell of soil, the evening sunlight over a field of wheat, or the crickets chirping at dusk on a residential street: All of it, it has always made me feel at peace. There is room to breathe, there is a realness of place. The seasons are extreme, but they pass and return, pass and return, and the world seems far steadier than it does from the vantage point of a coastal city. Certainly picturesque towns can be found in New England or California or the Pacific Northwest, but I can't shake the sense that they're too picturesque. On the East Coast, especially, these places seem to me aggressively quaint, unbecomingly smug, and even xenophobic, downright paranoid in their wariness of those who might somehow infringe upon the local charm. I suspect this wariness is tied to the high cost of real estate, the fear that there might not be enough space or money and what there is of both must be clung to and defended. The West Coast, I think, has a similar self-regard...and a beauty that I can't help seeing as show-offy. But the Midwest: It is quietly lovely, not preening with the need to have its attributes remarked on. It is the place I am calmest and most myself.
Curtis Sittenfeld (American Wife)
Invest and save aggressively but enjoy life, live below your means but don't hold back on the ones you love. Smile and lend a hand to those in need. Prepare for the worst and pray for the best
Ronald A. Martin Jr.
Chastity by no means signifies rejection of human sexuality or lack of esteem for it: rather it signifies spiritual energy capable of defending love from the perils of selfishness and aggressiveness, and able to advance it towards its full realization.
Pope John Paul II (On the Family: Familiaris Consortio)
What the hell time is it?" muttered the old man. He was always an aggressive sleeper. Sleep was one of the things he did best, and he loved it. Some look upon sleep as an unfortunate necessary interruption of life; but there are others who hold that sleep is life, or at least one of the more fulfilling aspects of it, like eating or sex. Any time my old man's sleep was interrupted, he became truly dangerous.
Jean Shepherd (Wanda Hickey's Night of Golden Memories: And Other Disasters)
I’M LOSING FAITH IN MY FAVORITE COUNTRY Throughout my life, the United States has been my favorite country, save and except for Canada, where I was born, raised, educated, and still live for six months each year. As a child growing up in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, I aggressively bought and saved baseball cards of American and National League players, spent hours watching snowy images of American baseball and football games on black and white television and longed for the day when I could travel to that great country. Every Saturday afternoon, me and the boys would pay twelve cents to go the show and watch U.S. made movies, and particularly, the Superman serial. Then I got my chance. My father, who worked for B.F. Goodrich, took my brother and me to watch the Cleveland Indians play baseball in the Mistake on the Lake in Cleveland. At last I had made it to the big time. I thought it was an amazing stadium and it was certainly not a mistake. Amazingly, the Americans thought we were Americans. I loved the United States, and everything about the country: its people, its movies, its comic books, its sports, and a great deal more. The country was alive and growing. No, exploding. It was the golden age of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. The American dream was alive and well, but demanded hard work, honesty, and frugality. Everyone understood that. Even the politicians. Then everything changed. Partly because of its proximity to the United States and a shared heritage, Canadians also aspired to what was commonly referred to as the American dream. I fall neatly into that category. For as long as I can remember I wanted a better life, but because I was born with a cardboard spoon in my mouth, and wasn’t a member of the golden gene club, I knew I would have to make it the old fashioned way: work hard and save. After university graduation I spent the first half of my career working for the two largest oil companies in the world: Exxon and Royal Dutch Shell. The second half was spent with one of the smallest oil companies in the world: my own. Then I sold my company and retired into obscurity. In my case obscurity was spending summers in our cottage on Lake Rosseau in Muskoka, Ontario, and winters in our home in Port St. Lucie, Florida. My wife, Ann, and I, (and our three sons when they can find the time), have been enjoying that “obscurity” for a long time. During that long time we have been fortunate to meet and befriend a large number of Americans, many from Tom Brokaw’s “Greatest Generation.” One was a military policeman in Tokyo in 1945. After a very successful business carer in the U.S. he’s retired and living the dream. Another American friend, also a member of the “Greatest Generation”, survived The Battle of the Bulge and lived to drink Hitler’s booze at Berchtesgaden in 1945. He too is happily retired and living the dream. Both of these individuals got to where they are by working hard, saving, and living within their means. Both also remember when their Federal Government did the same thing. One of my younger American friends recently sent me a You Tube video, featuring an impassioned speech by Marco Rubio, Republican senator from Florida. In the speech, Rubio blasts the spending habits of his Federal Government and deeply laments his country’s future. He is outraged that the U.S. Government spends three hundred billion dollars, each and every month. He is even more outraged that one hundred and twenty billion of that three hundred billion dollars is borrowed. In other words, Rubio states that for every dollar the U.S. Government spends, forty cents is borrowed. I don’t blame him for being upset. If I had run my business using that arithmetic, I would be in the soup kitchens. If individual American families had applied that arithmetic to their finances, none of them would be in a position to pay a thin dime of taxes.
Stephen Douglass
Men are not gentle creatures who want to be loved, and who at the most can defend themselves if they are attacked; they are, on the contrary, creatures among whose instinctual endowments is to be reckoned a powerful share of aggressiveness. As a result, their neighbor is for them not only a potential helper or sexual object, but also someone who tempts them to satisfy their aggressiveness on him, to exploit his capacity for work without compensation, to use him sexually without his consent, to seize his possessions, to humiliate him, to cause him pain, to torture and to kill him. Homo homini lupus [man is wolf to man]. Who, in the face of all his experience of life and of history, will have the courage to dispute this assertion?
Sigmund Freud (Civilization and Its Discontents)
Now, for example, people with freckles aren’t thought of as a minority by the nonfreckled. They aren’t a minority in the sense we’re talking about. And why aren’t they? Because a minority is only thought of as a minority when it constitutes some kind of a threat to the majority, real or imaginary. And no threat is ever quite imaginary. Anyone here disagree with that? If you do, just ask yourself, What would this particular minority do if it suddenly became the majority overnight? You see what I mean? Well, if you don’t – think it over! “All right. Now along come the liberals – including everybody in this room, I trust – and they say, ‘Minorities are just people, like us.’ Sure, minorities are people – people, not angels. Sure, they’re like us – but not exactly like us; that’s the all-too- familiar state of liberal hysteria in which you begin to kid yourself you honestly cannot see any difference between a Negro and a Swede….” (Why, oh why daren’t George say “between Estelle Oxford and Buddy Sorensen”? Maybe, if he did dare, there would be a great atomic blast of laughter, and everybody would embrace, and the kingdom of heaven would begin, right here in classroom. But then again, maybe it wouldn’t.) “So, let’s face it, minorities are people who probably look and act and – think differently from us and hay faults we don’t have. We may dislike the way they look and act, and we may hate their faults. And it’s better if we admit to disliking and hating them than if we try to smear our feelings over with pseudo liberal sentimentality. If we’re frank about our feelings, we have a safety valve; and if we have a safety valve, we’re actually less likely to start persecuting. I know that theory is unfashionable nowadays. We all keep trying to believe that if we ignore something long enough it’ll just vanish…. “Where was I? Oh yes. Well, now, suppose this minority does get persecuted, never mind why – political, economic, psychological reasons. There always is a reason, no matter how wrong it is – that’s my point. And, of course, persecution itself is always wrong; I’m sure we all agree there. But the worst of it is, we now run into another liberal heresy. Because the persecuting majority is vile, says the liberal, therefore the persecuted minority must be stainlessly pure. Can’t you see what nonsense that is? What’s to prevent the bad from being persecuted by the worse? Did all the Christian victims in the arena have to be saints? “And I’ll tell you something else. A minority has its own kind of aggression. It absolutely dares the majority to attack it. It hates the majority–not without a cause, I grant you. It even hates the other minorities, because all minorities are in competition: each one proclaims that its sufferings are the worst and its wrongs are the blackest. And the more they all hate, and the more they’re all persecuted, the nastier they become! Do you think it makes people nasty to be loved? You know it doesn’t! Then why should it make them nice to be loathed? While you’re being persecuted, you hate what’s happening to You, you hate the people who are making it happen; you’re in a world of hate. Why, you wouldn’t recognize love if you met it! You’d suspect love! You’d think there was something behind it – some motive – some trick…
Christopher Isherwood (A Single Man)
Once we have broken free of the prejudices of our own provincially limited ecclesiastical, tribal, or national rendition of the world archetypes, it becomes possible to understand that the supreme initiation is not that of the local motherly fathers, who then project aggression onto the neighbors for their own defense. The good news, which the World Redeemer brings and which so many have been glad to hear, zealous to preach, but reluctant, apparently, to demonstrate, is that God is love, the He can be, and is to be, loved, and that all without exception are his children. Such comparatively trivial matters as the remaining details of the credo, the techniques of worship, and devices of episcopal organization (which have so absorbed the interest of Occidental theologians that they are today seriously discussed as the principal questions of religion), are merely pedantic snares, unless kept ancillary to the major teaching. Indeed, where not so kept, they have the regressive effect: they reduce the father image back again to the dimensions of the totem. And this, of course, is what has happened throughout the Christian world. One would think that we had been called upon to decide or to know whom, of all of us, the Father prefers. Whereas, the teaching is much less flattering: "Judge not, that ye be not judged." The World Savior's cross, in spite of the behavior of its professed priests, is a vastly more democratic symbol than the local flag.
Joseph Campbell (The Hero With a Thousand Faces)
I've rattled around long enough to have learned one thing: the universe is cold, and cruel, and violent - but only if you choose to look at it that way. For every act of aggression there are a thousand acts of kindness. For every hateful word, a million declarations of love.
James Roberts (The Transformers: More Than Meets The Eye #1)
Because the persecuting majority is vile, says the liberal, therefore the persecuted minority must be stainlessly pure...What's to prevent the bad from being persecuted by the worse? Did all the Christian victims on the arena have to be saints? ...A minority has its own kind of aggression. It absolutely dares the majority to attack it. It hates the majority - not without a cause, I grant you. It even hates the other minorities - because all minorities are in competition; each one proclaims that its sufferings are the worst and its wrongs are the blackest. And the more they all hate, and the more they're all persecuted, the nastier they become! Do you think it makes people nasty to be loved? You know it doesn’t! Then why should it make them nice to be loathed? While you’re being persecuted, you hate what’s happening to you, you hate the people who are making it happen; you’re in a world of hate. Why, you wouldn’t recognize love if you met it! You’d suspect love! You’d think there was something behind it—some motive—some trick.
Christopher Isherwood (A Single Man)
-Desiderata- Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time. Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism. Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass. Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.
Max Ehrmann (Desiderata of Happiness)
hatred and aggression—and carnivorous sexual intent—aren’t our “dark” side. Our dark side is the side that denies its own existence.
David Schnarch (Passionate Marriage: Keeping Love and Intimacy Alive in Committed Relationships)
the patron god of children born on Thursdays is Shiva the Destroyer, and that the day has two guiding animal spirits--the lion and the tiger. The official tree of children born on Thursday is the banyan. The official bird is the peacock. A person born on Thursday is always talking first, interrupting everyone else, can be a little aggressive, tends to be handsome ("a playboy or playgirl," in Ketut's words) but has a decent overall character, with an excellent memory and a desire to help other people.
Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia)
Boys’ aggressiveness is increasingly being treated as a medical problem, particularly in schools, a trend that has led to the diagnosing and medicating of boys whose problem may really be that they have been traumatized and influenced by exposure to violence and abuse at home. Treating these boys as though they have a chemical problem not only overlooks the distress they are in but also reinforces their belief that they are “out of control” or “sick,” rather than helping them to recognize that they are making bad choices based on destructive values. I have sometimes heard adults telling girls that they should be flattered by boys’ invasive or aggressive behavior “because it means they really like you,” an approach that prepares both boys and girls to confuse love with abuse and socializes girls to feel helpless.
Lundy Bancroft (Why Does He Do That?: Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men)
Do not despise your inner world. That is the first and most general piece of advice I would offer… Our society is very outward-looking, very taken up with the latest new object, the latest piece of gossip, the latest opportunity for self-assertion and status. But we all begin our lives as helpless babies, dependent on others for comfort, food, and survival itself. And even though we develop a degree of mastery and independence, we always remain alarmingly weak and incomplete, dependent on others and on an uncertain world for whatever we are able to achieve. As we grow, we all develop a wide range of emotions responding to this predicament: fear that bad things will happen and that we will be powerless to ward them off; love for those who help and support us; grief when a loved one is lost; hope for good things in the future; anger when someone else damages something we care about. Our emotional life maps our incompleteness: A creature without any needs would never have reasons for fear, or grief, or hope, or anger. But for that very reason we are often ashamed of our emotions, and of the relations of need and dependency bound up with them. Perhaps males, in our society, are especially likely to be ashamed of being incomplete and dependent, because a dominant image of masculinity tells them that they should be self-sufficient and dominant. So people flee from their inner world of feeling, and from articulate mastery of their own emotional experiences. The current psychological literature on the life of boys in America indicates that a large proportion of boys are quite unable to talk about how they feel and how others feel — because they have learned to be ashamed of feelings and needs, and to push them underground. But that means that they don’t know how to deal with their own emotions, or to communicate them to others. When they are frightened, they don’t know how to say it, or even to become fully aware of it. Often they turn their own fear into aggression. Often, too, this lack of a rich inner life catapults them into depression in later life. We are all going to encounter illness, loss, and aging, and we’re not well prepared for these inevitable events by a culture that directs us to think of externals only, and to measure ourselves in terms of our possessions of externals. What is the remedy of these ills? A kind of self-love that does not shrink from the needy and incomplete parts of the self, but accepts those with interest and curiosity, and tries to develop a language with which to talk about needs and feelings. Storytelling plays a big role in the process of development. As we tell stories about the lives of others, we learn how to imagine what another creature might feel in response to various events. At the same time, we identify with the other creature and learn something about ourselves. As we grow older, we encounter more and more complex stories — in literature, film, visual art, music — that give us a richer and more subtle grasp of human emotions and of our own inner world. So my second piece of advice, closely related to the first, is: Read a lot of stories, listen to a lot of music, and think about what the stories you encounter mean for your own life and lives of those you love. In that way, you will not be alone with an empty self; you will have a newly rich life with yourself, and enhanced possibilities of real communication with others.
Martha C. Nussbaum
This book explains how it became fashionable to pathologize the behavior of millions of healthy male children. We have turned against boys and forgotten a simple truth: the energy, competitiveness, and corporal daring of normal males are responsible for much of what is right in the world. No one denies that boys’ aggressive tendencies must be mitigated and channeled toward constructive ends. Boys need (and crave) discipline, respect, and moral guidance. Boys need love and tolerant understanding. But being a boy is not a social disease.
Christina Hoff Sommers (The War Against Boys: How Misguided Policies are Harming Our Young Men)
Positive thoughts are a source of joy, love and an indication of our alignment with the source. Negative thoughts create disharmony in our body for example depression, fear and aggression indicate misalignment with the source.
Hina Hashmi (Your Life A Practical Guide to Happiness Peace and Fulfilment)
We may distinguish both true and false needs. “False” are those which are superimposed upon the individual by particular social interests in his repression: the needs which perpetuate toil, aggressiveness, misery, and injustice. Their satisfaction might be most gratifying to the individual, but this happiness is not a condition which has to be maintained and protected if it serves to arrest the development of the ability (his own and others) to recognize the disease of the whole and grasp the chances of curing the disease. The result then is euphoria in unhappiness. Most of the prevailing needs to relax, to have fun, to behave and consume in accordance with the advertisements, to love and hate what others love and hate, belong to this category of false needs.
Herbert Marcuse (One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society)
when she was 7, a boy pushed her on the playground she fell headfirst into the dirt and came up with a mouthful of gravel and lines of blood chasing each other down her legs when she told her teacher what happened, she laughed and said ‘boys will be boys honey don’t let it bother you he probably just thinks you’re cute’ but the thing is, when you tell a little girl who has rocks in her teeth and scabs on her knees that hurt and attention are the same you teach her that boys show their affection through aggression and she grows into a young woman who constantly mistakes the two because no one ever taught her the difference ‘boys will be boys’ turns into ‘that’s how he shows his love’ and bruises start to feel like the imprint of lips she goes to school with a busted mouth in high school and says she was hit with a basketball instead of his fist the one adult she tells scolds her ‘you know he loses his temper easily why the hell did you have to provoke him?’ so she shrinks folds into herself, flinches every time a man raises his voice by the time she’s 16 she’s learned her job well be quiet, be soft, be easy don’t give him a reason but for all her efforts, he still finds one ‘boys will be boys’ rings in her head ‘boys will be boys he doesn’t mean it he can’t help it’ she’s 7 years old on the playground again with a mouth full of rocks and blood that tastes like copper love because boys will be boys baby don’t you know that’s just how he shows he cares she’s 18 now and they’re drunk in the split second it takes for her words to enter his ears they’re ruined like a glass heirloom being dropped between the hands of generations she meant them to open his arms but they curl his fists and suddenly his hands are on her and her head hits the wall and all of the goddamn words in the world couldn’t save them in this moment she touches the bruise the next day boys will be boys aggression, affection, violence, love how does she separate them when she learned so early that they’re inextricably bound, tangled in a constant tug-of-war she draws tally marks on her walls ratios of kisses to bruises one entire side of her bedroom turns purple, one entire side of her body boys will be boys will be boys will be boys when she’s 20, a boy touches her hips and she jumps he asks her who the hell taught her to be scared like that and she wants to laugh doesn’t he know that boys will be boys? it took her 13 years to unlearn that lesson from the playground so I guess what I’m trying to say is i will talk until my voice is hoarse so that my little sister understands that aggression and affection are two entirely separate things baby they exist in different universes my niece can’t even speak yet but I think I’ll start with her now don’t ever accept the excuse that boys will be boys don’t ever let him put his hands on you like that if you see hate blazing in his eyes don’t you ever confuse it with love baby love won’t hurt when it comes you won’t have to hide it under long sleeves during the summer and the only reason he should ever reach out his hand is to hold yours
Fortesa Latifi
We humans have cooperative, selfless and loving moral instincts, the voice or expression of which we call our conscience—which is the complete opposite of competitive, selfish and aggressive instincts. As Charles Darwin said, "The moral sense… affords the best and highest distinction between man and the lower animals.
Jeremy Griffith (Freedom: The End of the Human Condition)
At the time he had closed in upon himself, denying her a place of entry. She was tenacious, aggressive as a lover, had tried to prise the pieces of him apart. Only when she failed had she finally let go, by then months had passed. She loved like she was going to war, but she was also not the kind of woman to wait for a man. Valiant in battle, noble in defeat. She walked away and never looked back
Aminatta Forna
A victim act is a form of passive aggression. It seeks to achieve gratification not by honest work or a contribution made out of one's experience or insight or love, but by the manipulation of others through silent (and not-so-silent) threat. The victim compels others to come to his rescue or to behave as he wishes by holding them hostage to the prospect of his own further illness/meltdown/mental dissolution, or simply by threatening to make their lives so miserable that they do what he wants.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
Life can be a dream, life can be a beautiful mess but, people make it hard with too much of ego, jealousy, anger and aggression.
Jyoti Patel
[Q: "Have you ever said 'I love you' and not meant it?"] [A:] All the time. When I really love someone, I can only show it by making aggressive and bad-taste remarks.
Slavoj Žižek
With aggressive come-ons, at least you knew where you stood. Holding hands, you got - hopeful.
Laura Florand (The Chocolate Rose (Amour et Chocolat, #3; La Vie en Roses, #0.5))
We live in a world where most people still subscribe to the belief that shame is a good tool for keeping people in line. Not only is this wrong, but it’s dangerous. Shame is highly correlated with addiction, violence, aggression, depression, eating disorders, and bullying. Researchers don’t find shame correlated with positive outcomes at all—there are no data to support that shame is a helpful compass for good behavior. In fact, shame is much more likely to be the cause of destructive and hurtful behaviors than it is to be the solution.
Brené Brown (Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead)
A young lady is supposed to be classy, kind, generous, and respectful. She is told she should not display any anger and/or badmouth her peers. A young lady is told to think ‘inside the box’ and to limit her expectations because her husband will provide for her in the future. A young lady is taught to never fuss or complain and to always keep a smile on her face. When a young lady speaks her mind, she is told that she is not acting “ladylike”. When a young lady steps out of her comfort zone to challenge herself to fight for what she wants, she is told she is not acting “ladylike”. When a young lady plays a sport, and at times she may be aggressive, she is told that she is not acting “ladylike” When a young lady is bossy, she is told to humble herself, because that is not acting “ladylike”. Maybe she isn’t bossy, maybe she is confident within herself, has high self-esteem and knows she can dare to be different.
Charlena E. Jackson (A Woman's Love Is Never Good Enough)
Don’t remind me of that,” Blackwood snapped. “I’m not in love with her, but I can see her value.” “Always about value with you, isn’t it? Why don’t you grow a personality? You’re like a shambling ghost, curdling everyone’s blood whenever you walk into a room.” “At least I don’t spend my time seducing innocent young women.” “Someone’s been reading novels again. What’s the title of this one? The Poxy Lordling and the Aggressive Milkmaid?” Magnus sighed. “I tried to leave her alone, but I can’t help myself. She teases me in just the right way—” Blackwood made a disgusted noise. “I don’t care. Unless you want an enemy, Magnus, leave her alone.
Jessica Cluess (A Shadow Bright and Burning (Kingdom on Fire, #1))
Rage can easily convert to hatred. There is a wish to control the bad object in order to avoid persecution or fear. This control is achieved by the development of obsessive control mechanisms, which psychopathologically regulate the repression of aggression in such an individual.
Sam Vaknin (Malignant Self-love: Narcissism Revisited - The Essay)
Wisdom is really the key to wealth. With great wisdom, comes great wealth and success. Rather than pursuing wealth, pursue wisdom. The aggressive pursuit of wealth can lead to disappointment. Wisdom is defined as the quality of having experience, and being able to discern or judge what is true, right, or lasting. Wisdom is basically the practical application of knowledge. Rich people have small TVs and big libraries, and poor people have small libraries and big TVs. Become completely focused on one subject and study the subject for a long period of time. Don't skip around from one subject to the next. The problem is generally not money. Jesus taught that the problem was attachment to possessions and dependence on money rather than dependence on God. Those who love people, acquire wealth so they can give generously. After all, money feeds, shelters, and clothes people. They key is to work extremely hard for a short period of time (1-5 years), create abundant wealth, and then make money work hard for you through wise investments that yield a passive income for life. Don't let the opinions of the average man sway you. Dream, and he thinks you're crazy. Succeed, and he thinks you're lucky. Acquire wealth, and he thinks you're greedy. Pay no attention. He simply doesn't understand. Failure is success if we learn from it. Continuing failure eventually leads to success. Those who dare to fail miserably can achieve greatly. Whenever you pursue a goal, it should be with complete focus. This means no interruptions. Only when one loves his career and is skilled at it can he truly succeed. Never rush into an investment without prior research and deliberation. With preferred shares, investors are guaranteed a dividend forever, while common stocks have variable dividends. Some regions with very low or no income taxes include the following: Nevada, Texas, Wyoming, Delaware, South Dakota, Cyprus, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Panama, San Marino, Seychelles, Isle of Man, Channel Islands, Curaçao, Bahamas, British Virgin Islands, Brunei, Monaco, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Bermuda, Kuwait, Oman, Andorra, Cayman Islands, Belize, Vanuatu, and Campione d'Italia. There is only one God who is infinite and supreme above all things. Do not replace that infinite one with finite idols. As frustrated as you may feel due to your life circumstances, do not vent it by cursing God or unnecessarily uttering his name. Greed leads to poverty. Greed inclines people to act impulsively in hopes of gaining more. The benefit of giving to the poor is so great that a beggar is actually doing the giver a favor by allowing the person to give. The more I give away, the more that comes back. Earn as much as you can. Save as much as you can. Invest as much as you can. Give as much as you can.
H.W. Charles (The Money Code: Become a Millionaire With the Ancient Jewish Code)
The element of truth behind all this, which people are so ready to disavow, is that [humans] are not gentle creatures who want to be loved, and who at the most can defend themselves if attacked; they are, on the contrary, creatures among whose instinctual endowments is to be reckoned a powerful share of aggressiveness. ... It is always possible to bind together a considerable number of people in love, so long as there are other people left over to receive the manifestations of their aggressiveness.
Sigmund Freud (Civilization and Its Discontents)
The Great Commandment to love God and love others is a call to intimacy; the Great Commission to go and make disciples is a call to fruitfulness. Intimacy is to precede fruitfulness. The Great Commandment must precede the Great Commission and is an inseparable part of it. When intimacy does not precede fruitfulness, we easily become subject to our own mission and become focused upon religious duty, hyper-religious activity, and aggressive striving that leaves an angry edge in our life and relationships.
Jack Frost (Spiritual Slavery to Spiritual Sonship)
terrified of being abandoned and all narcissists need Narcissistic Supply Sources. These narcissists prefer to direct their furious rage at people who are meaningless to them and whose withdrawal will not constitute a threat to the narcissists' precariously-balanced personalities. They explode at an underling, yell at a waitress, or berate a taxi driver. Alternatively, they sulk (silent treatment). Many narcissists feel anhedonic, or pathologically bored, drink or do drugs - all forms of self-directed aggression. From time to time, no longer able to pretend and to suppress their rage, they have it out with the real source of their anger. Then they lose all vestiges of self-control and rave like lunatics. They shout incoherently, make absurd accusations, distort facts, and air long-suppressed grievances, allegations and suspicions. These episodes are followed by periods of saccharine sentimentality and excessive flattering and submissiveness towards the target of the latest rage attack. Driven by the mortal fear of being abandoned or ignored, the narcissist debases and demeans himself to the point of provoking repulsion in the beholder. These pendulum-like emotional swings make life with the narcissist exhausting.
Sam Vaknin (Malignant Self-love: Narcissism Revisited)
The principle of compulsory service, embodied in the system of conscription, lias been the means by which modem dictators and military gangs have shackled their people after a coup d'état, and bound them to their own aggressive purposes. In view of the great service that conscription has rendered to tyranny and war, it is fundamentally shortsighted for any liberty-loving and peace-desiring peoples to maintain it as an imagined safeguard, lest they become the victims of the monster they have helped to preserve.
B.H. Liddell Hart (The Revolution in Warfare.)
Teachers of children see gender equality mostly in terms of ensuring that girls get to have the same privileges and rights as boys within the existing social structure; they do not see it in terms of granting boys the same rights as girls—for instance, the right to choose not to engage in aggressive or violent play, the right to play with dolls, to play dress up, to wear costumes of either gender, the right to choose.
bell hooks (The Will to Change: Men, Masculinity, and Love)
Without opposition, there could be no creation. All life would cease without resistance. Emotions also have their polar opposites: attraction – repulsion, love – hate, aggression – meekness, and mercy – callousness.
Kilroy J. Oldster (Dead Toad Scrolls)
While the differences between love and hate can be blurred and difficult to decipher at times, the dichotomy of denial and acceptance are much more distinct. One is halting and aggressively rejects all truth, while the other is more passive and at peace – welcoming whatever truth is in waiting, whether fortunate or tragic.
Kenn Bivins (The Wedding & Disaster of Felona Mabel)
Without virtue, it is hard to bear the results of good fortune suitably. Those who lack virtue become arrogant and wantonly aggressive when they have these other goods. They think less of everyone else, and do whatever they please. They do this because they are imitating the magnanimous person though they are not really like him.
Aristotle on the Megalopsychos
You were broken before I ever took you to the Everneath.Remember how you were when you showed up on my doorstep? That had nothing to do with me.You came broken and that was the fault of this world.Not mine." I nodded again,a little less aggressively. "Why do you care if I get hurt?" All he said was, "I hate to see it.Whether you go with me or not,I don't like you getting hurt." But his face seemed to say more.As if there were something he wasn't telling me. Before I could ask him about it,his iPhone vibrated in his pocket. He pulled it out,read the screen, and then walked over to the window. "We'll finish this later." "Tell me why you care," I said. He put his hands on the windowsill. "Because it's you. Despite what you think of me,your pain will always be my pain." "There has to be more to it than that. What aren't you telling me,Cole?" He grinned. "How are you so good at reading me when you can't read anyone else around you?" He sighed, and as he climbed out the window,he said, "I love it.
Brodi Ashton (Everneath (Everneath, #1))
The problem is that the desire to change is fundamentally a form of aggression toward yourself. The other problem is that our hangups, unfortunately or fortunately, contain our wealth. Our neurosis and our wisdom are made out of the same material. If you throw out your neurosis, you also throw out your wisdom. Someone who is very angry also has a lot of energy; that energy is what’s so juicy about him or her. That’s the reason people love that person. The idea isn’t to try to get rid of your anger, but to make friends with it, to see it clearly with precision and honesty, and also to see it with gentleness. That means not judging yourself as a bad person, but also not bolstering yourself up by saying, “It’s good that I’m this way, it’s right that I’m this way. Other people are terrible, and I’m right to be so angry at them all the time.” The gentleness involves not repressing the anger but also not acting it out. It is something much softer and more openhearted than any of that. It involves learning how, once you have fully acknowledged the feeling of anger and the knowledge of who you are and what you do, to let it go. You can let go of the usual pitiful little story line that accompanies anger and begin to see clearly how you keep the whole thing going. So whether it’s anger or craving or jealousy or fear or depression—whatever it might be—the notion is not to try to get rid of it, but to make friends with it. That means getting to know it completely, with some kind of softness, and learning how, once you’ve experienced it fully, to let go. The
Pema Chödrön (The Wisdom of No Escape: And the Path of Loving-Kindness)
The American Bar Association reports that suicides among lawyers are close to four times greater than the rate of the general population. An American Bar Association Journal article reported that experts on lawyer depression and substance abuse attributed the higher suicide rate to lawyers’ perfectionism and on their need to be aggressive and emotionally detached.
Brené Brown (Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead)
Well, I just finished reading this sexy book where the male character was aggressive and dominant and the female love interest was submissive. It was hot. I mean really hot. And I thought it sounded romantic the way he took care of her.” I took a long gulp of my tea, finishing the cup. “But girl, as soon as he tried to force those clams on me, I was like ‘oh hell no!
Danielle Allen (Autumn and Summer)
The truth is that we stray and have affairs not because we are all naturally inclined to have multiple mates but because our bond with our partner is either inherently weak or has deteriorated so far that we are unbearably lonely. We haven’t understood love or known how to repair it. So, confused and lost in a world that sells sex aggressively as the be-all and end-all of a relationship, the only obvious “solution” has been to seek out new lovers to try to create the longed-for connection.
Sue Johnson (Love Sense: The Revolutionary New Science of Romantic Relationships)
The Warrior function is…unmistakable in Scripture…Within the epistles, the mature believing man is often described in militant terms–a warrior equipped to battle mighty enemies and shatter satanic strongholds. The heart of the Warrior is a protective heart. The Warrior shields, defends, stands between, and guards…He invests himself in “the energy of self-disciplined, aggressive action.” By Warrior I do not mean one who loves war or draws sadistic pleasure from fighting or bloodshed. There is a difference between a warrior and a brute. A warrior is a protector…Men stand tallest when they are protecting and defending.
Stuart K. Weber (Tender Warrior: God's Intention for a Man)
Cash leaned forward against her hand and Harper met him halfway. The kiss was powerful and demanding. Harper wrapped her arms around Cash, feeling his heartbeat against her chest. The kiss was more aggressive than either of them meant it to be, and, when they pulled apart, they were both breathing fast, like they had sprinted toward each other. “I’ve been waiting a long time to do that,” Cash said, out of breath. “Eight years,” Harper murmured. “My whole life,” Cash corrected, leaning in again.
Summer Hines (Some Things Stay With You: A Windswept Wyoming Romance)
A moment later, Jackie lifts himself into a canter. It is analyzable - I have seen the picture of how he steps so far under with his supporting hind leg that he is placing it right beneath where I am sitting; his leg and body become a U-shaped spring that lifts me forward - but it is not describable. It is neither floating nor springing. It is power without labor, thrust without force, the very opposite of any sort of aggression, the particular physics of his anatomy, the demonstration and the effect of his personality.
Jane Smiley (A Year at the Races: Reflections on Horses, Humans, Love, Money, and Luck)
Most of us would like to see our enemies defeated and punished, and it is an ironic (and gruesome) human truth that many of us unconsciously entertain the same feeling about our friends and the members of our family. For there is a curious ambivalence about the human soul: it can love and hate the same object at the same time with almost equal force. Society suspects this. It half realizes that civilization is perpetually menaced because of this primary hostility of men toward one another. Therefore, culture has to summon every possible reinforcement against these aggressive hatreds. Hence the ideal command to love one’s neighbor as oneself. This commandment is the strongest defense against human hatred, and even though it is impossible to fulfill it completely, men cling to it. For they unconsciously realize that if this commandment were to be swept away, the world would be a place of chaos and desolation.
Joshua Loth Liebman (Peace of Mind: Insights on Human Nature That Can Change Your Life)
do you give yourself enough attention? Do you settle for second best? When you look in the mirror, does your attention immediately gravitate toward flaws? When you are sad, do you tell yourself to “get over it”? Do you try to suppress or silence your feelings by being passive-aggressive or indulging in an addiction? Just take some time to look at your life, and write down all the ways in which
Teal Swan (Shadows Before Dawn: Finding the Light of Self-Love Through Your Darkest Times)
{Colonel Carr's testimony of Colonel Robert Ingersoll at his funeral} He was the boldest, most aggressive, courageous, virile, and the kindest and gentlest and most considerate and loving man I ever knew. His was a nature that yielded to no obstacles, that could not be moved nor turned aside by the allurements of place or position, the menaces of power, the favors of the opulent, or the enticing influences of public opinion. Entering upon his career in an age of obsequiousness and time-serving, when the values of political and religious views were estimated by what they would bring from the ruling party and from the church, in offices and emoluments and benefices, he assailed the giant evils of the times with the strength and power of Hercules and ground them to dust under his trip-hammer blows. Throughout his whole active life, there has been no greater and more potential influence than the personality of this sublime character in breaking the shackles of the slave, and in freeing men and women and children from the bonds of ignorance and superstition.
Eugene Asa Carr
He could not name precisely the special quality she possessed. A glow. An exuberance. An aggressive and determined joy that gave her the courage to push past his defenses, to confront him with unflinching courage, to look into his heart and to see something there worth fighting for.
Susan Wiggs (At the King's Command (Tudor Rose, #1))
I underestimated this guy. He plays the game well. Of course he does. He’s had years of adulthood – where everyone smiles when they hate someone and bottles up their emotions – to practice in. He’s a master of passive-aggressive-bullshit-taekwondo. And I’m more a master of the aggressive style.
Sara Wolf (Savage Delight (Lovely Vicious, #2))
The antifragile loves randomness and uncertainty, which also means—crucially—a love of errors, a certain class of errors. Antifragility has a singular property of allowing us to deal with the unknown, to do things without understanding them—and do them well. Let me be more aggressive: we are largely better at doing than we are at thinking, thanks to antifragility. I’d rather be dumb and antifragile than extremely smart and fragile, any time.
Nassim Nicholas Taleb (Antifragile: Things that Gain from Disorder)
Think of your focus as a charger. It sends more power to where you channel the energy. You can charge up aggression, problems, and conflicts or wellness, compassion, and harmony. You can charge peace or war, love or hate, success or failure. You are the connecting factor between creative energy and reality.
Emily Maroutian
Until we are willing to question many of the specifics of the male sex role, including most of the seven norms and stereotypes that psychologist Robert Levant names in a listing of its chief constituents--'avoiding femininity, restrictive emotionality, seeking achievement and status, self-reliance, aggression, homophobia, and nonrelational attitudes toward sexuality'--we are going to deny men their full humanity. Feminist masculinity would have as its chief constituents integrity, self-love, emotional awareness, assertiveness, and relational skill, including the capacity to be empathic, autonomous, and connected.
bell hooks (The Will to Change: Men, Masculinity, and Love)
Each time Nate saw her, Elisa’s beauty struck him anew, as if in the interval the memory of what she actually looked like had been distorted by the tortured emotions she elicited since they’d broken up: in his mind, she took on the dimensions of an abject creature. What a shock when she opened the door, bursting with vibrant, almost aggressive good health. The power of her beauty, Nate had once decided, came from its ability to constantly reconfigure itself. When he thought he’d accounted for it, filed it away as a dead fact—pretty girl—she turned her head or bit her lip, and like a children’s toy you shake to reset, her prettiness changed shape, its coordinates altered: now it flashed from the elegant contours of her sloping brow and flaring cheekbone, now from her shyly smiling lips.
Adelle Waldman (The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P.)
One should not belittle the advantage that is enjoyed by a fairly small cultural circle, which is that it allows the aggressive drive an outlet in the form of hostility to outsiders. It is always possible to bind quite large numbers of people together in love, provided that others are left out as targets for aggression.
Sigmund Freud (Civilization and Its Discontents)
The communists think they have found the way to redeem mankind from evil. Man is equivocally good and well disposed to his neighbour, but his nature has been corrupted by the institution of private property ... I can recognize the psychological presumption behind it as a baseless illusion. With the abolition of private property the human love of aggression is robbed of one of its tools, a strong one no doubt, but certainly not the strongest ... Aggression was not created by property.
Sigmund Freud
Right-wing women have surveyed the world: they find it a dangerous place. They see that work subjects them to more danger from more men; it increases the risk of sexual exploitation. They see that creativity and originality in their kind are ridiculed; they see women thrown out of the circle of male civilization for having ideas, plans, visions, ambitions. They see that traditional marriage means selling to one man, not hundreds: the better deal. They see that the streets are cold, and that the women on them are tired, sick, and bruised. They see that the money they can earn will not make them independent of men and that they will still have to play the sex games of their kind: at home and at work too. They see no way to make their bodies authentically their own and to survive in the world of men. They know too that the Left has nothing better to offer: leftist men also want wives and whores; leftist men value whores too much and wives too little. Right-wing women are not wrong. They fear that the Left, in stressing impersonal sex and promiscuity as values, will make them more vulnerable to male sexual aggression, and that they will be despised for not liking it. They are not wrong. Right-wing women see that within the system in which they live they cannot make their bodies their own, but they can agree to privatized male ownership: keep it one-on-one, as it were. They know that they are valued for their sex— their sex organs and their reproductive capacity—and so they try to up their value: through cooperation, manipulation, conformity; through displays of affection or attempts at friendship; through submission and obedience; and especially through the use of euphemism—“femininity, ” “total woman, ” “good, ” “maternal instinct, ” “motherly love. ” Their desperation is quiet; they hide their bruises of body and heart; they dress carefully and have good manners; they suffer, they love God, they follow the rules. They see that intelligence displayed in a woman is a flaw, that intelligence realized in a woman is a crime. They see the world they live in and they are not wrong. They use sex and babies to stay valuable because they need a home, food, clothing. They use the traditional intelligence of the female—animal, not human: they do what they have to to survive.
Andrea Dworkin (Right-Wing Women)
When I consider the men (like my father) I have treated in psychotherapy, I recognize the challenge I face as a counselor. These men are in counseling due to an insistent wife, troubled child or their own addiction. They suffer a lack of connection with the people they say they love most. Chronically accused of being over controlling or emotionally absent, they feel at sea when their wives and children claim to be lonely in their presence. How can these people feel “un-loved” when (from his perspective) he has dedicated his life to their welfare? Some of these men will express their lack of vitality and emotional engagement though endless service. They are hyperaware of the moods, needs and prefer-ences of loved ones, yet their self-neglect can be profound. This text examines how a lack of secure early attachment with caregivers can result in the tendency to self-abandon while managing connections with significant others. Their anxiety and distrust of the connection of others will manifest in anxious monitoring, over-giving, passive aggressive approaches to anger and chronic worry. For them, failure to anticipate and meet the needs of others equals abandonment.
Mary Crocker Cook (Codependency & Men)
Our whole culture is based on the appetite for buying, on the idea of a mutually favorable exchange. Modern man's happiness consists in the thrill of looking at the shop windows, and in buying all that he can afford to buy, either for cash or on installments. He (or she) looks at people in a similar way. For the man an attractive girl—and for the woman an attractive man—are the prizes they are after. 'Attractive' usually means a nice package of qualities which are popular and sought after on the personality market. What specifically makes a person attractive depends on the fashion of the time, physically as well as mentally. During the twenties, a drinking and smoking girl, tough and sexy, was attractive; today the fashion demands more domesticity and coyness. At the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of this century, a man had to be aggressive and ambitious—today he has to be social and tolerant—in order to be an attractive 'package'. At any rate, the sense of falling in love develops usually only with regard to such human commodities as are within reach of one's own possibilities for exchange. I am out for a bargain; the object should be desirable from the standpoint of its social value, and at the same time should want me, considering my overt and hidden assets and potentialities. Two persons thus fall in love when they feel they have found the best object available on the market, considering the limitations of their own exchange values. Often, as in buying real estate, the hidden potentialities which can be developed play a considerable role in this bargain. In a culture in which the marketing orientation prevails, and in which material success is the outstanding value, there is little reason to be surprised that human love relations follow the same pattern of exchange which governs the commodity and the labor market.
Erich Fromm (The Art of Loving)
Every action taken by human beings is based in love or fear, not simply those dealing with relationships. Decisions affecting business, industry, politics, religion, the education of your young, the social agenda of your nations, the economic goals of your society, choices involving war, peace, attack, defense, aggression, submission; determinations to covet or give away, to save or to share, to unite or to divide—every single free choice you ever undertake arises out of one of the only two possible thoughts there are: a thought of love or a thought of fear. Fear is the energy which contracts, closes down, draws in, runs, hides, hoards, harms. Love is the energy which expands, opens up, sends out, stays, reveals, shares, heals. Fear wraps our bodies in clothing, love allows us to stand naked. Fear clings to and clutches all that we have, love gives all that we have away. Fear holds close, love holds dear. Fear grasps, love lets go. Fear rankles, love soothes. Fear attacks, love amends. Every human thought, word, or deed is based in one emotion or the other. You have no choice about this, because there is nothing else from which to choose. But you have free choice about which of these to select.
Neale Donald Walsch (The Complete Conversations with God)
In a more evolved world, one a little more alive to the Greek ideal of love, we would perhaps know to be a bit less clumsy, scared, and aggressive when wanting to point something out, and rather less combative and sensitive when receiving feedback. The concept of education within a relationship would thus lose some of its unnecessarily eerie and negative connotations. We would accept that in responsible hands, both projects—teaching and being taught, calling attention to another’s faults, and letting ourselves be critiqued—might
Alain de Botton (The Course of Love)
Those of us who attempt to act and do things for others or for the world without deepening our own self-understanding, freedom, integrity, and capacity to love, will not have anything to give others. We will communicate to them nothing but the contagion of our own obsessions, our aggressivity, our ego-centered ambitions, our delusions about ends and means.
Thomas Merton
Men are not gentle creatures who want to be loved, and who at the most can defend themselves if they are attacked; they are, on the contrary, creatures among whose instinctual endowments is to be reckoned a powerful share of aggressiveness. As a result, their neighbor is for them not only a potential helper or sexual object, but also someone who tempts them to satisfy their aggressiveness on him, to exploit his capacity for work without compensation, to use him sexually without his consent, to seize his possessions, to humiliate him, to cause him pain, to torture and to kill him. Homo homini lupus [Man is a wolf to man]. Who, in the face of all his experience of life and of history, will have the courage to dispute this assertion?
Sigmund Freud (Civilization and Its Discontents)
England has her Stratford, Scotland has her Alloway, and America, too, has her Dresden. For there, on August 11, 1833, was born the greatest and noblest of the Western World; an immense personality, -- unique, lovable, sublime; the peerless orator of all time, and as true a poet as Nature ever held in tender clasp upon her loving breast, and, in words coined for the chosen few, told of the joys and sorrows, hopes, dreams, and fears of universal life; a patriot whose golden words and deathless deeds were worthy of the Great Republic; a philanthropist, real and genuine; a philosopher whose central theme was human love, -- who placed 'the holy hearth of home' higher than the altar of any god; an iconoclast, a builder -- a reformer, perfectly poised, absolutely honest, and as fearless as truth itself -- the most aggressive and formidable foe of superstition -- the most valiant champion of reason -- Robert G. Ingersoll.
Herman E. Kittredge (Ingersoll: A Biographical Appreciation (1911))
Page 15, paperback version by Virago Press 1997: ... Let me ask you this, Mr Ai: do you know, by your own experience, what patriotism is?” ‘No’, I said, shaken by the force of the intese personality suddenly turning itself wholly upon me. ‘I don´t think I do. If by patriotism you don´t mean the love of one`s homeland, for that I do know.’ ‘No, I don’t mean love, when I say patriotism. I mean fear. The fear of the other. And its expressions are political, not poetical: hate, rivalry, aggression. It grows in us, that fear. It grows in us year by year. We’ve followed our road too far. And you, who hardly know what I’m talking about, who show us the new road –‘ He broke off. After a while he went on, in control again, cool and polite: ‘It’s because of fear that I refuse to urge your cause with the king, now. But not fear for myself, Mr. Ai. I’m not acting patriotically. There are, after all, other nations on Gethen.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Left Hand of Darkness (Hainish Cycle, #4))
Paying attention takes time and focus—two things we’re short on these days. Sitting next to each other while surfing the Web on separate laptops doesn’t cut it. Neither does dinner if your eyes are on your cellphone as much as they’re on your partner. A neglected spouse might not clamor for your attention as aggressively as a pet, but they need the dose of love just as much.
Ellen McCarthy (The Real Thing: Lessons on Love and Life from a Wedding Reporter's Notebook)
Freud was fascinated with depression and focused on the issue that we began with—why is it that most of us can have occasional terrible experiences, feel depressed, and then recover, while a few of us collapse into major depression (melancholia)? In his classic essay “Mourning and Melancholia” (1917), Freud began with what the two have in common. In both cases, he felt, there is the loss of a love object. (In Freudian terms, such an “object” is usually a person, but can also be a goal or an ideal.) In Freud’s formulation, in every loving relationship there is ambivalence, mixed feelings—elements of hatred as well as love. In the case of a small, reactive depression—mourning—you are able to deal with those mixed feelings in a healthy manner: you lose, you grieve, and then you recover. In the case of a major melancholic depression, you have become obsessed with the ambivalence—the simultaneity, the irreconcilable nature of the intense love alongside the intense hatred. Melancholia—a major depression—Freud theorized, is the internal conflict generated by this ambivalence. This can begin to explain the intensity of grief experienced in a major depression. If you are obsessed with the intensely mixed feelings, you grieve doubly after a loss—for your loss of the loved individual and for the loss of any chance now to ever resolve the difficulties. “If only I had said the things I needed to, if only we could have worked things out”—for all of time, you have lost the chance to purge yourself of the ambivalence. For the rest of your life, you will be reaching for the door to let you into a place of pure, unsullied love, and you can never reach that door. It also explains the intensity of the guilt often experienced in major depression. If you truly harbored intense anger toward the person along with love, in the aftermath of your loss there must be some facet of you that is celebrating, alongside the grieving. “He’s gone; that’s terrible but…thank god, I can finally live, I can finally grow up, no more of this or that.” Inevitably, a metaphorical instant later, there must come a paralyzing belief that you have become a horrible monster to feel any sense of relief or pleasure at a time like this. Incapacitating guilt. This theory also explains the tendency of major depressives in such circumstances to, oddly, begin to take on some of the traits of the lost loved/hated one—and not just any traits, but invariably the ones that the survivor found most irritating. Psychodynamically, this is wonderfully logical. By taking on a trait, you are being loyal to your lost, beloved opponent. By picking an irritating trait, you are still trying to convince the world you were right to be irritated—you see how you hate it when I do it; can you imagine what it was like to have to put up with that for years? And by picking a trait that, most of all, you find irritating, you are not only still trying to score points in your argument with the departed, but you are punishing yourself for arguing as well. Out of the Freudian school of thought has come one of the more apt descriptions of depression—“aggression turned inward.” Suddenly the loss of pleasure, the psychomotor retardation, the impulse to suicide all make sense. As do the elevated glucocorticoid levels. This does not describe someone too lethargic to function; it is more like the actual state of a patient in depression, exhausted from the most draining emotional conflict of his or her life—one going on entirely within. If that doesn’t count as psychologically stressful, I don’t know what does.
Robert M. Sapolsky (Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers: The Acclaimed Guide to Stress, Stress-Related Diseases, and Coping)
Boundaries come after grace, because compassion minds the fragile places but boundaries keep them from compromising the rest. Brokenness may have legitimate origins, but left unchecked, a wound becomes infected and poisons the whole body (and subsequently, everyone around). Wounds must be attended to heal. With an unhealthy limb, the rest of the body overcompensates through manipulation, aggression, or blaming. Boundaries here are kind. Better to apply direct pressure to the wound than pretend it is well; this may get worse before better, but it is way of healing.
Jen Hatmaker (For the Love: Fighting for Grace in a World of Impossible Standards)
Her tongue touched his, hesitant, almost shy. It was enough. Enough to bring their past, their passion, their desire, rushing back to him. He groaned, low and unabashed, and plunged his tongue deeper into her mouth, his hands snaking around her waist to snare her shirt in two tight fistfuls. She whimpered in reply, the sound pushing him over the edge. With another groan—this one far more aggressive—he yanked her to his body, taking utter possession of her mouth as his hands roamed her back. She fit to his frame with perfection, firm and soft and lush. Nothing had changed. Her body against his ignited a primitive need in him he’d never been able to vocalize, not in song or word, no matter how many times he’d tried. It sparked a want beyond the physical.
Lexxie Couper (Love's Rhythm (Heart of Fame, #1))
In a more evolved world, one a little more alive to the Greek ideal of love, we would perhaps know to be a bit less clumsy, scared, and aggressive when wanting to point something out, and rather less combative and sensitive when receiving feedback. The concept of education within a relationship would thus lose some of its unnecessarily eerie and negative connotations. We would accept that in responsible hands, both projects—teaching and being taught, calling attention to another’s faults, and letting ourselves be critiqued—might after all be loyal to the true purpose of love. Rabih
Alain de Botton (The Course of Love)
There are many people for whom hate and rage pay a higher dividend of immediate satisfaction than love. Congenitally aggressive, they soon become adrenaline addicts, deliberately indulging psychically stimulated endocrines. Knowing that on self-assertion always ends by evoking other and hostile self-assertions, they sedulously cultivate their truculence. And, sure enough, very soon they find themselves in the thick of a fight. But a fight is what they most enjoy; for it is while they are fighting that their blood chemistry makes them feel most intensely themselves. "Feeling good", they naturally assume that they *are good. Adrenalin addiction is rationalized as Righteous Indignation and finally, like the prophet Jonah, they are convinced, unshakably, that they do well to be angry.
Aldous Huxley (The Devils of Loudun)
Nonviolence and nonaggression are generally regarded as interchangeable concepts - King and Gandhi frequently used them that way - but nonviolence, as employed by Gandhi in India and by King in the American South, might reasonably be viewed as a highly disciplined form of aggression. If one defines aggression in the primary dictionary sense of "attack," nonviolent resistance proved to be the most powerful attack imaginable on the powers King and Gandhi were trying to overturn. The writings of both men are filled with references to love as a powerful force against oppression, and while the two leaders were not using the term" force" in the military sense, they certainly regarded nonviolence as a tactical weapon as well as an expression of high moral principle." Susan Jacoby (p. 196)
Helen Prejean (Dead Man Walking: The Eyewitness Account of the Death Penalty That Sparked a National Debate)
We have to HIDE from each other because we think that we are the only ones BROKEN. We think we're the only ones whose original selves we ground up and smashed under the jack-booted heel of cultural lies and superstition, patriotism, war lust, war hunger, and a denial of AGGRESSION AGAINST CHILDREN THAT IS THE FOUNDATION OF CULTURE. Culture is everything that is NOT TRUE. If it's true, it's called 'math' or 'science' or 'facts'. Culture is the Stockholm syndrome we have with the historical lies that are convenient to the rules. We love the lies, because we don't think we can be loved if we don't.
Stefan Molyneux
In my dreams, I entered a world where success was based on ethics and proper dealings, not bribes and scams. My vision of sucess including marrying Sophia, having joyful children, unassuming friends, and warmhearted neighbors. I aspired for an environment where I would be valued for my good character, not the strength of my aggression. I wanted to leave West Beirut, the four square miles of a lesser world.
Sam Wazan (Trapped in Four Square Miles)
And I'll tell you something else. A minority has its own kind of aggression. It absolutely dares the majority to attack it. It hates the majority - not without a cause, I grant you. It even hates the other minorities, because all minorities are in competition: each one proclaims that its sufferings are the worst and its wrongs are the blackest. And the more they all hate, and the more they're all persecuted, the nastier they become! Do you think it makes people nasty to be loved? You know it doesn't! Then why should it make them nice to be loathed? While you're being persecuted, you hate what's happening to you, you hate the people who are making it happen; you're in a world of hate. Why, you wouldn't recognize love if you met it! You'd suspect love! You'd think there was something behind it - some motive - some trick....
Christopher Isherwood (A Single Man)
The main problem for women trying to emulate male sexuality is that as a ruling-class sexuality, it is constructed around the fact that they have a subordinate class on whom to act sexually. Women are that subordinate class. The elements that constitute male sexuality depend upon the possession of ruling-class status such as objectification, aggression, and the separation of sex from loving emotion. Women are bound to be unsuccessful in seeking to acquire a form of sexuality which depends upon the possession of ruling-class power. It might be possible for some lesbians to seek a close emulation of ruling-class sexuality because they are able to practise on other women. Heterosexual women cannot practise ruling-class sexuality on men because they are not the ruling class. All that heterosexual women are in a position to do is to accommodate male sexual interests... In male supremacy men's sexual access to women gives them power and status. It does not make much difference who initiates the act, the men still gain the advantage.
Sheila Jeffreys (Anticlimax: A Feminist Perspective on the Sexual Revolution)
I listened, I understood and I didn’t understand. Long ago she had threatened Marcello with the shoemaker’s knife simply because he had dared to grab my wrist and break the bracelet. From that point on, I was sure that if Marcello had just brushed against her she would have killed him. But toward Stefano, now, she showed no explicit aggression. Of course, the explanation was simple: we had seen our fathers beat our mothers from childhood. We had grown up thinking that a stranger must not even touch us, but that our father, our boyfriend, and our husband could hit us when they liked, out of love, to educate us, to reeducate us. As
Elena Ferrante (The Story of a New Name (The Neapolitan Novels, #2))
I fear,” he told me, “never experiencing love or appreciation or affection. On one level—on one day—I will believe myself unworthy of them, so my fears appear justified. On another day, I will very grandly believe I have been unjustifiably denied these things, deserve them in spades, and aggressively pursue them. The aggression I display at these times initially excites me, but afterwards—after the manic, muscular display—I am horrified.
James Grissom (Follies of God: Tennessee Williams and the Women of the Fog)
The mercy of the West has been social revolution; the mercy of the East has been individual insight into the basic self/void. We need both. They are both contained in the traditional three aspects of the Dharma path: wisdom (prajna), meditation (dhyana), and morality (sila). Wisdom is intuitive knowledge of the mind of love and clarity that lies beneath one’s ego-driven anxieties and aggressions. Meditation is going into the mind to see this for yourself — over and over again, until it becomes the mind you live in. Morality is bringing it back out in the way you live, through personal example and responsible action, ultimately toward the true community (sangha) of “all beings.
Gary Snyder (Earth House Hold)
I am in a state about all of this. I comb the newspapers. I listen to the commentators. And I get into fights all over the place. If a Republican knows his place and hates McCarthy and wishes to God Eisenhower would get more aggressive about these bastards, well and good and I will admit him to the brotherhood. If he says nasty things about Truman (who is rapidly becoming the Man I Love although I have been sore enough at him in my time) or still thinks taxes are coming down and we can get out of Korea‡ and we ought to fire all the Democrats in Washington and don’t worry, McCarthy-ism will blow over or alternately Where There’s Smoke There’s Fire—well, dear, I am no lady and I argue loudly and lose my temper and it’s disgraceful.
Joan Reardon (As Always, Julia: The Letters of Julia Child and Avis DeVoto: Food, Friendship, and the Making of a Masterpiece)
Now you listen to me … This is happening. You and I are happening, and this is real. I like you … I love that you’re brilliant and generous and gorgeous and real. I like you.” … “You’re just going to have to trust me. And tomorrow I’m taking you out and showing you off; not just because I really fucking like how you look, but because you’re smart and good and genuine…” I rubbed myself against him, made a little wild by his commanding aggressiveness. Therefore, I was wholly disoriented when he gripped my upper arms and held me away. He glared at me until I blinked at him and was able to bring him into focus. Seemingly satisfied that he had my undivided attention, Ronan ended his suspended thought with a low growl “…and now you’re mine.
L.H. Cosway (The Hooker and the Hermit (Rugby, #1))
Kisten's eyes went distant, falling from mine as he gently pulled my arms into a less aggressive posture. "Most people," he said, "are desperate to be needed. And if they don't feel good about themselves or think they're undeserving of love, some will fasten upon the worst possible way to satisfy that need to punish themselves. They're the addicts, the shadows both claimed and unclaimed, passed like the fawning sheep they make themselves into as they search for a glimmer of worth, knowing it's false even as they beg for it. Yes, it is ugly. And yes, we take advantage of those who let us. But which is worse, taking from someone who wants you to, knowing in your soul that you're a monster, or taking from an unwilling person and proving it?
Kim Harrison (Every Which Way But Dead (The Hollows, #3))
Time and again, I have asked myself why therapy works for some people while others remain the prisoners of their symptoms despite years of analysis or therapeutic care. In each and every case I examined, I was able to establish that when people found the kind of therapeutic care and companionship that enabled them to discover their own story and give free expression to their indignation at their parents’ behavior, they were able to liberate themselves from the maltreated child’s destructive attachment. As adults they were able to take their lives into their own hands and did not need to hate their parents. The opposite was the case with people whose therapists enjoined them to forgive and forget, actually believing that such forgiveness could have a salutary, curative effect. They remained trapped in the position of small children who believe they love their parents but in fact allow themselves to be controlled all their lives by the internalized parents and ultimately develop some kind of illness that leads to premature death. Such dependency actively fosters the hatred that, though repressed, remains active, and it drives them to direct their aggression at innocent people. We only hate as long as we feel totally powerless. I
Alice Miller (The Body Never Lies: The Lingering Effects of Cruel Parenting)
The community knows that the fundamental questions of life can only be looked at in a spirit of peace and inner freedom. Nobody can force anyone else to love and to walk to freedom. Militants for a cause will tend to be organized for a struggle which they hope to win; they will seek to impose their way aggressively. Frequently they seek outward change more than inward change. . . . As long as there are fears and prejudices in the human heart, there will be war and bitter injustice. It is only when hearts are healed, and become loving and open, that the great political problems will be solved. . . . As fears and prejudices diminish, and trust in God and others grows, the community can radiate and witness to a style and quality of life which will bring a solution to the troubles of our world. The response to war is to live like brothers and sisters. The response to injustice is to share. The response to despair is a limitless trust and hope. The response to prejudice and hatred is forgiveness. To work for community is to work for humanity. To work for peace in community, through acceptance of others as they are, and through constant forgiveness, is to work for peace in the world and for true political solutions; it is to work for the Kingdom of God.
Jean Vanier (Community And Growth)
Don't exist. Live. Get out, explore. Thrive. Challenge authority. Challenge yourself. Evolve. Change forever. Become who you say you always will. Keep moving. Don't stop. Start the revolution. Become a freedom fighter. Become a superhero. Just because everyone doesn't know your name doesn't mean you don't matter. Are you happy? Have you ever been happy? What have you done today to matter? Did you exist or did you live? How did you thrive? Become a chameleon—fit in anywhere. Be a rockstar—stand out everywhere. Do nothing, do everything. Forget everything, remember everyone. Care, don't just pretend to. Listen to everyone. Love everyone and nothing at the same time. Its impossible to be everything, but you can't stop trying to do it all. . . . Leap. It's time to be aggressive. You've started to speak your mind, now keep going with it. . . . Get your gloves on, it's time for rebirth. There IS no room for the nice guys in the history books. THIS IS THE START OF A REVOLUTION. THE REVOLUTION IS YOUR LIFE. THE GOAL IS IMMORTALITY. LET'S LIVE, BABY. LET'S FEEL ALIVE AT ALL TIMES. TAKE NO PRISONERS. HOLD NO SOUL UNACCOUNTABLE, ESPECIALLY NOT YOUR OWN. IF SOMETHING DOESN'T HAPPEN, IT'S YOUR FAULT. Make this moment your reckoning. Your head has been held under water for too long and now it is time to rise up and take your first true breath. Do everything with exact calculation, nothing without meaning. Do not make careful your words, but make no excuses for what you say. Fuck em' all. Set a goal for everyday and never be tired.
Brian Krans (A Constant Suicide)
Along with many other professionals, I’ve come to the conclusion that shame is much more likely to lead to destructive and hurtful behaviors than it is to be the solution. Again, it is human nature to want to feel worthy of love and belonging. When we experience shame, we feel disconnected and desperate for worthiness. Full of shame or the fear of shame, we are more likely to engage in self-destructive behaviors and to attack or shame others. In fact, shame is related to violence, aggression, depression, addiction, eating disorders, and bullying. Children who use more shame self-talk (I am bad) versus guilt self-talk (I did something bad) struggle mightily with issues of self-worth and self-loathing. Using shame to parent teaches children that they are not inherently worthy of love.
Brené Brown (The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You're Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are)
The other aspect of those weekday-evening trips he loved was the light itself, how it filled the train like something living as the cars rattled across the bridge, how it washed the weariness from his seat-mates’ faces and revealed them as they were when they first came to the country, when they were young and America seemed conquerable. He’d watch that kind light suffuse the car like syrup, watch it smudge furrows from foreheads, slick gray hairs into gold, gentle the aggressive shine from cheap fabrics into something lustrous and fine. And then the sun would drift, the car rattling uncaringly away from it, and the world would return to its normal sad shapes and colors, the people to their normal sad state, a shift as cruel and abrupt as if it had been made by a sorcerer’s wand. He
Hanya Yanagihara (A Little Life)
There is a very simple, very beautiful Native American story I have always remembered. In this story a grandfather is telling his young grandson about life. He tells the little boy that in every person there are two wolves, who live in one's breast and who are always at war with each other. The first wolf is very aggressive and full of violence and hate toward the world. The second wolf is peaceful and full of light and love. The little boy anxiously asks his grandfather which wolf wins. The grandfather replies, "The one you feed.
Maryanne Wolf (Reader, Come Home: The Reading Brain in a Digital World)
Community, a place of healing and growth . . . When people enter community, especially from a place of loneliness in a big city or from a place of aggression and rejection, they find the warmth and the love exhilarating. This permits them to start lifting their masks and barriers and to become vulnerable. They may enter into a time of communion and great joy. But then too, as they lift their masks and become vulnerable, they discover that community can be a terrible place, because it is a place of relationship; it is the revelation of our wounded emotions and of how painful it can be to live with others, especially with some people. It is so much easier to live with books and objects, television, or dogs and cats! It is so much easier to live alone and just do things for others, when one feels like it.
Jean Vanier (Community And Growth)
Entire civilizations in history had ceased to exist. How had life in them felt in the last decades and days? Russia and the Russians had been dying for a century—in the wars, in the Gulag, and, most of all, in the daily disregard for human life. She had always thought of that disregard as negligence, but perhaps it should be understood as active desire. This country wanted to kill itself. Everything that was alive here—the people, their words, their protest, their love—drew aggression because the energy of life had become unbearable for this society. It wanted to die; life was a foreign agent. At least, that was what Freud might say. At least Arutyunyan had read him. Future generations of Russians might not be so lucky—if there were any future generations of Russians, that was. She stubbed out a cigarette and lit another.
Masha Gessen (The Future Is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia)
Love in patriarchal culture was linked to notions of possession, to paradigms of domination and submission wherein it was assumed one person would give love and another person receive it. Within patriarchy heterosexist bonds were formed on the basis that women being the gender in touch with caring emotions would give men love, and in return men, being in touch with power and aggression, would provide and protect. Yet in so many cases in heterosexual families men did not respond to care: instead they were tyrants who used their power unjustly to coerce and control.
bell hooks (Feminism Is for Everybody: Passionate Politics)
In the middle of the night, he woke up and realized to his surprise that he had been having one erotic dream after the other. The only one he could recall with any clarity was the last: an enormous naked woman, at least five times his size, floating on her back in a pool, her belly from crotch to navel covered with thick hair. Looking at her from the side of the pool, he was greatly excited. How could he have been excited when his body was debilitated by a gastric disorder? And how could he be excited by the sight of a woman who would have repelled him had he seen her while conscious? He thought: In the clockwork of the head, two cogwheels turn opposite each other. On the one, images; on the other, the body's reactions. The cog carrying the image of a naked woman meshes with the corresponding erection-command cog. But when, for one reason or another, the wheels go out of phase and the excitement cog meshes with a cog bearing the image of a swallow in flight, the penis rises at the sight of a swallow. Moreover, a study by one of Tomas's colleagues, a specialist in human sleep, claimed that during any kind of dream men have erections, which means that the link between erections and naked women is only one of a thousand ways the Creator can set the clockwork moving in a man's head. And what has love in common with all this? Nothing. If a cogwheel in Tomas's head goes out of phase and he is excited by seeing a swallow, it has absolutely no effect on his love for Tereza. If excitement is a mechanism our Creator uses for His own amusement, love is something that belongs to us alone and enables us to flee the Creator. Love is our freedom. Love lies beyond Es muss sein! Though that is not entirely true. Even if love is something other than a clockwork of sex that the Creator uses for His own amusement, it is still attached to it. It is attached to it like a tender naked woman to the pendulum of an enormous clock. Thomas thought: Attaching love to sex is one of the most bizarre ideas the Creator ever had. He also thought: One way of saving love from the stupidity of sex would be to set the clockwork in our head in such a way as to excite us at the sight of a swallow. And with that sweet thought he started dozing off. But on the very threshold of sleep, in the no-man's-land of muddled concepts, he was suddenly certain he had just discovered the solution to all riddles, the key to all mysteries, a new utopia, a paradise: a world where man is excited by seeing a swallow and Tomas can love Tereza without being disturbed by the aggressive stupidity of sex.
Milan Kundera (The Unbearable Lightness of Being)
The Cretans’ more natural attitudes toward sex would also have had other consequences equally difficult to perceive under the prevailing paradigm, wherein religious dogma often views sex as more sinful than violence. As Hawkes writes, “The Cretans seem to have reduced and diverted their aggressiveness through a free and well-balanced sexual life.”33 Along with their enthusiasm for sports and dancing and their creativity and love of life, these liberated attitudes toward sex seem to have contributed to the generally peaceful and harmonious spirit predominant in Cretan life.
Riane Eisler (The Chalice and the Blade: Our History, Our Future (Updated With a New Epilogue))
This trial is a farce. The real prosecutor is not the state of Finland, but the government of one great power. The real defendants are not the persons who were picked on political grounds and now stand accused here. The real defendant is the Finnish people. The purpose of this trial is not to mete out maximum sentences on those accused, but for a Finnish court to declare that Finland was the aggressor in the war and that the Soviet Union was a peace-loving, wronged victim of an unjustified aggression. [Final statement during Soviet dictated "War-responsibility" mock trial, 1945]
Risto Ryti
A split second later, Sadie-Grace literally bowled me over with a hug. "I love college," she told me, scrambling to her feet and helping me up before resuming her aggressive hug campaign. "I'm majoring in dance and also Russian literature, and combined, Boone and I have only broken two bones!" "Both Boone's," Campbell clarified. "His bones are my bones," Sadie-Grace insisted. "And vice versa. Unless that's creepy? I've discovered I have a really hard time telling what's creepy, but on the bright side, I haven't been kidnapped or kidnapped anyone else this semester, so that's good.
Jennifer Lynn Barnes (Deadly Little Scandals (Debutantes, #2))
He knew he needed to release her, but once he allowed his physical connection to drop away, he was uncertain if he’d ever have a chance to reconnect. Instinctively, he knew Azami was elusive, like water flowing through fingers, or the wind shifting in the trees. He needed a way to seal her to him. “How does one court a woman in Japan? Do I need your brothers’ permission?” She blinked again. Shocked. A hint of uncertainty crept into her eyes. She frowned, and he bent his head to swallow her protest before she could utter it. Her mouth trembled beneath his, and then she opened to him, like a flower, luring him deeper. Her arms slid around his neck, her body pressing tightly against his. He tightened his fingers in her hair. He was burning, through and through, from the inside out, a hot melting of bone and tissue. He hadn’t known he was lonely or even looking for something. He’d been complete. He loved his wife. He was a man with teammates he trusted implicitly. He lived in wild places of beauty he enjoyed. He hadn’t considered there would be a woman who could ever fit with him, who would ever turn his insides soft and his body hard. Feel the same way, Azami. He didn’t lift his mouth, kissing her again and again because one he’d made the mistake, he was addicted and what was the use fighting it? Not when it felt so damn right. Somewhere along the line, his kiss went from sheer aggression and command, to absolute tenderness. The emotion for her rose like a volcano, encompassing him entirely, drawn from some part of him he’d never known even existed. His mouth was gentle, his hands on her, possessive, yet just as gentle. Another claiming, this coming from that deep unknown well. Feel the same way, Azami, he whispered into her mind. An enticement. A need. He waited, something in him going still, waiting for her answer. Tell me how you’re feeling? She hadn’t pulled away. If anything, her arms had tightened around his neck. He shared every single breath she took, feeling the slight movement of her rib cage and breasts against him, the warm air they exchanged. Like I’m burning alive. Drowning. Like I never want this moment to end. He wasn’t a man to say flowery things to a woman, nor did he even think them, but he shared the honest truth with her. Like we belong. Once he let her go, the world would slip back into kilter. He wanted her to stay with him, to give him a chance with her. She didn’t hesitate, and he loved that about her as well. She gave herself in truth in the same way he did. I feel the same, but one of us has to be sane. She initiated the kiss when he pulled back slightly, chasing after him with her soft mouth, fingers digging tightly into the heavy muscle at his neck, sighing when his lips settled once more over hers. He took his time, kissing her thoroughly, again and again, all the while slipping deeper into her spell and hoping she was falling under his. Is this your idea of sanity? He’d make it his reality. He was falling further down the rabbit hole and he’d make her his sanity if she’d fall with him. Her soft laughter slipped inside his heart, winding there until there was no shaking her loose. Not really, but you have to be the strong one. He kissed her again. And again. Why is that? You started this.
Christine Feehan (Samurai Game (Ghostwalkers, #10))
Retaliation does not balance things, since it harms the soul of the retaliator and creates a more severe imbalance. Socrates noticed this peril and wrote: “It is better to suffer an injustice than to commit one.” This is because the body and mind are damaged by injustice from others, but it is our own soul that is damaged by revenge. A spiritually evolved adult is not cutthroat and does not believe that all is fair in love and war. He does not claw his way to the top but acts kindly at any rung of the ladder. He has personal ambition but not at the expense of others. This is an example of a moral standard becoming more important than success in the material world. The joy of a good conscience is the highest value for those who want to grow spiritually. With spiritual practice, our attitude toward an aggressor becomes compassion for the suffering dimension in his aggression. This response also serves to quiet him down.
David Richo (The Five Things We Cannot Change: And the Happiness We Find by Embracing Them)
how do you and I become supernatural? We have to begin to do what’s unnatural—that is, to give in the midst of crisis, when everyone is feeling lack and poverty; to love when everyone is angry and judging others; to demonstrate courage and peace when everyone else is in fear; to show kindness when others are displaying hostility and aggression; to surrender to possibility when the rest of the world is aggressively pushing to be first, trying to control outcomes, and fiercely competing in an endless drive to get to the top; to knowingly smile in the face of adversity; and to cultivate the feeling of wholeness when we’re diagnosed as sick.
Joe Dispenza (You Are the Placebo: Making Your Mind Matter)
What would be the value of a god who knew nothing of anger, revenge, envy, scorn, cunning, violence? who had perhaps never experienced the rapturous ardeurs of victory and of destruction? No one would understand such a god: why should any one want him? - True enough, when a nation is on the downward path, when it feels its belief in its own future, its hope of freedom slipping from it, when it begins to see submission as a first necessity and the virtues of submission as measures of self-preservation, then it must overhaul its god. He then becomes a hypocrite, timorous and demure; he counsels "peace of soul," hate-no-more, leniency, "love" of friend and foe. He moralizes endlessly; he creeps into every private virtue; he becomes the god of every man; he becomes a private citizen, a cosmopolitan... Formerly he represented a people, the strength of a people, everything aggressive and thirsty for power in the soul of a people; now he is simply the good god.
Friedrich Nietzsche (The Anti-Christ)
You think you know what a man is? You have no idea what a man is. You think you know what a daughter is? You have no idea what a daughter is. You think you know what this country is? You have no idea what this country is. You have a false image of everything. All you know is what a fucking glove is. This country is frightening. Of course she was raped. What kind of company do you think she was keeping? Of course out there she was going to get raped. This isn't Old Rimrock, old buddy - she's out there, old buddy, in the USA. She enters that world, that loopy world out there, with whats going on out there - what do you expect? A kid from Rimrock, NJ, of course she didn't know how to behave out there, of course the shit hits the fan. What could she know? She's like a wild child out there in the world. She can't get enough of it - she's still acting up. A room off McCarter Highway. And why not? Who wouldn't? You prepare her for life milking the cows? For what kind of life? Unnatural, all artificial, all of it. Those assumptions you live with. You're still in your olf man's dream-world, Seymour, still up there with Lou Levov in glove heaven. A household tyrannized by gloves, bludgeoned by gloves, the only thing in life - ladies' gloves! Does he still tell the one about the woman who sells the gloves washing her hands in a sink between each color? Oh where oh where is that outmoded America, that decorous America where a woman had twenty-five pairs of gloves? Your kid blows your norms to kingdom come, Seymour, and you still think you know what life is?" Life is just a short period of time in which we are alive. Meredith Levov, 1964. "You wanted Ms. America? Well, you've got her, with a vengeance - she's your daughter! You wanted to be a real American jock, a real American marine, a real American hotshot with a beautiful Gentile babe on your arm? You longed to belong like everybody else to the United States of America? Well, you do now, big boy, thanks to your daughter. The reality of this place is right up in your kisser now. With the help of your daughter you're as deep in the sit as a man can get, the real American crazy shit. America amok! America amuck! Goddamn it, Seymour, goddamn you, if you were a father who loved his daughter," thunders Jerry into the phone - and the hell with the convalescent patients waiting in the corridor for him to check out their new valves and new arteries, to tell how grateful they are to him for their new lease on life, Jerry shouts away, shouts all he wants if it's shouting he wants to do, and the hell with the rules of hte hospital. He is one of the surgeons who shouts; if you disagree with him he shouts, if you cross him he shouts, if you just stand there and do nothing he shouts. He does not do what hospitals tell him to do or fathers expect him to do or wives want him to do, he does what he wants to do, does as he pleases, tells people just who and what he is every minute of the day so that nothing about him is a secret, not his opinions, his frustrations, his urges, neither his appetite nor his hatred. In the sphere of the will, he is unequivocating, uncompromising; he is king. He does not spend time regretting what he has or has not done or justifying to others how loathsome he can be. The message is simple: You will take me as I come - there is no choice. He cannot endure swallowing anything. He just lets loose. And these are two brothers, the same parents' sons, one for whom the aggression's been bred out, the other for whom the aggression's been bred in. "If you were a father who loved your daughter," Jerry shouts at the Swede, "you would never have left her in that room! You would have never let her out of your sight!
Philip Roth (American Pastoral (The American Trilogy, #1))
Every disciple is a believer, but not every believer is necessarily a disciple. Anything short of discipleship, however, is settling for less than what God really desires for us. Loving God more than anyone or anything else is the very foundation of being a disciple. If you want to live your Christian life to its fullest, then love Jesus more than anyone or anything else. Either you will have harmony with God and friction with people, or you will have harmony with people and friction with God. You become a disciple in the biblical sense only when you are totally and completely committed to Jesus Christ and His Word. As a true disciple, your life won’t only be characterized by practical results and a hunger for Scripture, but you also will have love for others — especially fellow believers. Without all of these characteristics, you can’t really claim to be His disciple. A person who has been with Jesus will boldly share his or her faith. A person who has been with Jesus will be a person of prayer. A person who has been with Jesus will be persecuted. If for you, the Christian life is all about feeling good and having everything go your way, then you won’t like being a disciple. Being a follower of Christ is the most joyful and exciting life there is. But it also can be the most challenging life there is. It’s a life lived out under the command of someone other than yourself. Most prayers are not answered because they are outside the will of God. Once we have discovered God’s will, we can then pray aggressively and confidently for it. We can pray, believing it will happen, because we know it is not something we have dreamed. A forgiven person will be a forgiving person. A true disciple will harbor no grudge toward another. The disciple knows it will hinder his or her prayer life and walk with God. It is far better to sit down for an hour and talk genuinely with one person than to rattle off trite clichés to scores of people. Attending more Bible studies, more prayer meetings, reading more Christian books, and listening to more teaching without an outlet for the truth will cause us to spiritually decay. We need to take what God has given us and use it constructively in the lives of others. You were placed on earth to know God. Everything else is secondary. The more we know God, the more we should want to make Him known to a lost world. Your life belongs to God. You don’t share your time and talents with Him; He shares them with you! He owns you and everything about you. You need to recognize and acknowledge that fact.
Greg Laurie (Start! to Follow: How to Be a Successful Follower of Jesus Christ)
Men are not gentle creatures who want to be loved, and who at the most can defend themselves if they are attacked; they are, on the contrary, creatures among whose instinctual endowments is to be reckoned a powerful share of aggressiveness. As a result, their neighbor is for them not only a potential helper or sexual object, but also someone who tempts them to satisfy their aggressiveness on him, to exploit his capacity for work without compensation, to use him sexually without his consent, to seize his possessions, to humiliate him, to cause him pain, to torture and to kill him. Homo homini lupus [man is wolf to man]. Who in the face of all his experience of life and of history, will have the courage to dispute this assertion?
Sigmund Freud
Women are taught to sacrifice, to play nice, to live an altruistic life because a good girl is always rewarded in the end. This is not a virtue; it is propaganda. Submission gets you a ticket to future prosperity that will never manifest. By the time you realize the ticket to success and happiness you have been sold isn’t worth the paper it was printed on, it will be too late. Go on, spend a quarter of your life, even half of your life, in the service of others and you will realize you were hustled. You do not manifest your destiny by placing others first! A kingdom built on your back doesn’t become your kingdom, it becomes your folly. History does not remember the slaves of Egypt that built the pyramids, they remember the Pharaohs that wielded the power over those laborers. Yet here you are, content with being a worker bee, motivated by some sales pitch that inspires you to work harder for some master than you work for yourself, with this loose promise that one day you will share in his wealth. Altruism is your sin. Selfishness is your savior. Ruthless aggression and self-preservation are not evil. Why aren’t females taught these things? Instead of putting themselves first, women are told to be considerate and selfless. From birth, they have been beaten in the head with this notion of “Don’t be selfish!” Fuck that. Your mother may have told you to wait your turn like a good girl, but I’m saying cut in front of that other bitch. Club Success is about to hit capacity, and you don’t want to be the odd woman out. Where are the powerful women? Those who refuse to play by those rules and want more out of life than what a man allows her to have? I created a category for such women and labeled them Spartans. Much like the Greek warriors who fought against all odds, these women refuse to surrender and curtsy before the status quo. Being
G.L. Lambert (Men Don't Love Women Like You: The Brutal Truth About Dating, Relationships, and How to Go from Placeholder to Game Changer)
Sparks come from the very source of light and are made of the purest brightness—so say the oldest legends. When a human Being is to be born, a spark begins to fall. First it flies through the darkness of outer space, then through galaxies, and finally, before it falls here, to Earth, the poor thing bumps into the orbits of planets. Each of them contaminates the spark with some Properties, while it darkens and fades. First Pluto draws the frame for this cosmic experiment and reveals its basic principles—life is a fleeting incident, followed by death, which will one day let the spark escape from the trap; there’s no other way out. Life is like an extremely demanding testing ground. From now on everything you do will count, every thought and every deed, but not for you to be punished or rewarded afterward, but because it is they that build your world. This is how the machine works. As it continues to fall, the spark crosses Neptune’s belt and is lost in its foggy vapors. As consolation Neptune gives it all sorts of illusions, a sleepy memory of its exodus, dreams about flying, fantasy, narcotics and books. Uranus equips it with the capacity for rebellion; from now on that will be proof of the memory of where the spark is from. As the spark passes the rings of Saturn, it becomes clear that waiting for it at the bottom is a prison. A labor camp, a hospital, rules and forms, a sickly body, fatal illness, the death of a loved one. But Jupiter gives it consolation, dignity and optimism, a splendid gift: things-will-work-out. Mars adds strength and aggression, which are sure to be of use. As it flies past the Sun, it is blinded, and all that it has left of its former, far-reaching consciousness is a small, stunted Self, separated from the rest, and so it will remain. I imagine it like this: a small torso, a crippled being with its wings torn off, a Fly tormented by cruel children; who knows how it will survive in the Gloom. Praise the Goddesses, now Venus stands in the way of its Fall. From her the spark gains the gift of love, the purest sympathy, the only thing that can save it and other sparks; thanks to the gifts of Venus they will be able to unite and support each other. Just before the Fall it catches on a small, strange planet that resembles a hypnotized Rabbit, and doesn’t turn on its own axis, but moves rapidly, staring at the Sun. This is Mercury, who gives it language, the capacity to communicate. As it passes the Moon, it gains something as intangible as the soul. Only then does it fall to Earth, and is immediately clothed in a body. Human, animal or vegetable. That’s the way it is. —
Olga Tokarczuk (Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead)
It felt like I was living in two worlds. There was one world which was a daylight world and another dark world (though I'm not saying that everything bad happened in darkness because it didn't). In the daylight world, life had a veneer of normality - my mum was a bit violent, my dad was a bit distant, my big brother was in hospital somewhere, my little brother was always with Mum, and I had an uncle who was very loving and caring and did nice things for me. In this daylight world, I went to church and learned about Jesus. I was told about innocence and how He loves children. Then there was the other side, the dark world, which was almost a mirror image. But what I was getting taught there was all of the opposites. It was almost the reverse of Christianity. They would say that the Christian teachings were rubbish, and everything in the Kirk was right. they would sing a hymn - not like 'All Things Bright and Beautiful' but something about being strong. The hymns were quite Germanic, with harsh, aggressive chanting. They were always about power and strength and right. When they were singing I would be standing or sitting with whoever had taken me.
Laurie Matthew (Groomed)
The internal conflict in conscience caused by competing levels of natural selection is more than just an arcane subject for theoretical biologists to ponder. It is not the presence of good and evil tearing at one another in our breasts. It is a biological trait fundamental to understanding the human condition, and necessary for survival of the species. The opposed selection pressures during the genetic evolution of prehumans produced an unstable mix of innate emotional response. They created a mind that is continuously and kaleidoscopically shifting in mood—variously proud, aggressive, competitive, angry, vengeful, venal, treacherous, curious, adventurous, tribal, brave, humble, patriotic, empathetic, and loving. All normal humans are both ignoble and noble, often in close alternation, sometimes simultaneously.
Edward O. Wilson (The Meaning of Human Existence)
A mature community cultivates a lifestyle of love in the midst of market-style exchanges: a lifestyle of joy in the midst of manufactured desire, peace in the midst of fragmentation, patience in the midst of productivity, kindness in the midst of self-sufficiency, goodness in the midst of self-help, faithfulness in the midst of impermanence, gentleness in the midst of aggression, and self-control in the midst of addiction.
J.R. Woodward (Creating a Missional Culture: Equipping the Church for the Sake of the World)
Now try these Drivetime talismans on for size: organized chaos … wild discipline … reverent blasphemy … self-effacing grandiosity … fanatic moderation … selfish gifts … twisted calm … garish elegance … insane poise … ironic sincerity … blasphemous prayers … orgiastic lucidity … aggressive sensitivity … convoluted simplicity … macho feminism. Homework Discuss what is wetter than water, stronger than love, and more exotic than trust.
Rob Brezsny (The Televisionary Oracle)
The average person wastes his life. He has a great deal of energy but he wastes it. The life of an average person seems at the end utterly meaningless…without significance. When he looks back…what has he done? MIND The mind creates routine for its own safety and convenience. Tradition becomes our security. But when the mind is secure it is in decay. We all want to be famous people…and the moment we want to be something…we are no longer free. Intelligence is the capacity to perceive the essential…the what is. It is only when the mind is free from the old that it meets everything new…and in that there’s joy. To awaken this capacity in oneself and in others is real education. SOCIETY It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. Nature is busy creating absolutely unique individuals…whereas culture has invented a single mold to which we must conform. A consistent thinker is a thoughtless person because he conforms to a pattern. He repeats phrases and thinks in a groove. What happens to your heart and your mind when you are merely imitative, naturally they wither, do they not? The great enemy of mankind is superstition and belief which is the same thing. When you separate yourself by belief tradition by nationally it breeds violence. Despots are only the spokesmen for the attitude of domination and craving for power which is in the heart of almost everyone. Until the source is cleared there will be confusion and classes…hate and wars. A man who is seeking to understand violence does not belong to any country to any religion to any political party. He is concerned with the understanding of mankind. FEAR You have religion. Yet the constant assertion of belief is an indication of fear. You can only be afraid of what you think you know. One is never afraid of the unknown…one is afraid of the known coming to an end. A man who is not afraid is not aggressive. A man who has no sense of fear of any kind is really a free and peaceful mind. You want to be loved because you do not love…but the moment you really love, it is finished. You are no longer inquiring whether someone loves you or not. MEDITATION The ability to observe without evaluating is the highest form of intelligence. In meditation you will discover the whisperings of your own prejudices…your own noises…the monkey mind. You have to be your own teacher…truth is a pathless land. The beauty of meditation is that you never know where you are…where you are going…what the end is. Down deep we all understand that it is truth that liberates…not your effort to be free. The idea of ourselves…our real selves…is your escape from the fact of what you really are. Here we are talking of something entirely different….not of self improvement…but the cessation of self. ADVICE Take a break with the past and see what happens. Release attachment to outcomes…inside you will feel good no matter what. Eventually you will find that you don’t mind what happens. That is the essence of inner freedom…it is timeless spiritual truth. If you can really understand the problem the answer will come out of it. The answer is not separate from the problem. Suffer and understand…for all of that is part of life. Understanding and detachment…this is the secret. DEATH There is hope in people…not in societies not in systems but only in you and me. The man who lives without conflict…who lives with beauty and love…is not frightened by death…because to love is to die.
Jiddu Krishnamurti (Think on These Things)
If the mother managed to pass the child’s unconscious test by enduring the aggressive attacks without withdrawing her love in revenge, the child has to accept that she belongs to an external world. If the mother’s love is lasting, the child can develop a sense of confidence in the provision of his or her needs and a capacity to be alone. The child can go on pursue his or her own personal life without the fear of being abandoned because the child possesses the confidence that his or her needs will be met because he or she is of unique value to the mother. The same pattern then applies to adult life where an individual is able to trust himself or herself because he or she believes they are of unique value to other individuals. In becoming sure of the mother’s love, young children come to trust themselves, which makes it possible for them to be alone without anxiety.
Axel Honneth (The Struggle for Recognition: The Moral Grammar of Social Conflicts)
In the classic children’s story The Velveteen Rabbit, a stuffed animal becomes “real” because of a child’s love. Tamagotchis do not wait passively but demand attention and claim that without it they will not survive. With this aggressive demand for care, the question of biological aliveness almost falls away. We love what we nurture; if a Tamagotchi makes you love it, and you feel it loves you in return, it is alive enough to be a creature.
Sherry Turkle (Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other)
CONSENSUS PROPOSED CRITERIA FOR DEVELOPMENTAL TRAUMA DISORDER A. Exposure. The child or adolescent has experienced or witnessed multiple or prolonged adverse events over a period of at least one year beginning in childhood or early adolescence, including: A. 1. Direct experience or witnessing of repeated and severe episodes of interpersonal violence; and A. 2. Significant disruptions of protective caregiving as the result of repeated changes in primary caregiver; repeated separation from the primary caregiver; or exposure to severe and persistent emotional abuse B. Affective and Physiological Dysregulation. The child exhibits impaired normative developmental competencies related to arousal regulation, including at least two of the following: B. 1. Inability to modulate, tolerate, or recover from extreme affect states (e.g., fear, anger, shame), including prolonged and extreme tantrums, or immobilization B. 2. Disturbances in regulation in bodily functions (e.g. persistent disturbances in sleeping, eating, and elimination; over-reactivity or under-reactivity to touch and sounds; disorganization during routine transitions) B. 3. Diminished awareness/dissociation of sensations, emotions and bodily states B. 4. Impaired capacity to describe emotions or bodily states C. Attentional and Behavioral Dysregulation: The child exhibits impaired normative developmental competencies related to sustained attention, learning, or coping with stress, including at least three of the following: C. 1. Preoccupation with threat, or impaired capacity to perceive threat, including misreading of safety and danger cues C. 2. Impaired capacity for self-protection, including extreme risk-taking or thrill-seeking C. 3. Maladaptive attempts at self-soothing (e.g., rocking and other rhythmical movements, compulsive masturbation) C. 4. Habitual (intentional or automatic) or reactive self-harm C. 5. Inability to initiate or sustain goal-directed behavior D. Self and Relational Dysregulation. The child exhibits impaired normative developmental competencies in their sense of personal identity and involvement in relationships, including at least three of the following: D. 1. Intense preoccupation with safety of the caregiver or other loved ones (including precocious caregiving) or difficulty tolerating reunion with them after separation D. 2. Persistent negative sense of self, including self-loathing, helplessness, worthlessness, ineffectiveness, or defectiveness D. 3. Extreme and persistent distrust, defiance or lack of reciprocal behavior in close relationships with adults or peers D. 4. Reactive physical or verbal aggression toward peers, caregivers, or other adults D. 5. Inappropriate (excessive or promiscuous) attempts to get intimate contact (including but not limited to sexual or physical intimacy) or excessive reliance on peers or adults for safety and reassurance D. 6. Impaired capacity to regulate empathic arousal as evidenced by lack of empathy for, or intolerance of, expressions of distress of others, or excessive responsiveness to the distress of others E. Posttraumatic Spectrum Symptoms. The child exhibits at least one symptom in at least two of the three PTSD symptom clusters B, C, & D. F. Duration of disturbance (symptoms in DTD Criteria B, C, D, and E) at least 6 months. G. Functional Impairment. The disturbance causes clinically significant distress or impairment in at least two of the following areas of functioning: Scholastic Familial Peer Group Legal Health Vocational (for youth involved in, seeking or referred for employment, volunteer work or job training)
Bessel van der Kolk (The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma)
To be passive is to let others decide for you. To be aggressive is to decide for others. To be assertive is to decide for yourself. In myths, nothing good comes from gloating. You have to let the gods maintain the image of their singular power. I did not yet know that nightmares know no geography, that guilt and anxiety wander borderless. It is a reflex to expect the bad with the good. I don't know what fears kept hidden only grow more fierce. I don't know that my habits of pretending are only making us worse. Maybe moving forward also meant circling back. There are always two worlds. The one that I choose and the one that I deny, which inserts itself without my permission. To change our behavior, we must change our feelings and to change our feelings, we must change our thoughts. Freedom is bout choice - about choosing compassion, humor, optimism, intuition, curiosity and self-expression. To be free is to live in the present. When you have something to prove, you are not free. When we grieve, it's not just over what happened - we grieve for what didn't happen. You can't heal what you can't feel. It's easier to hold someone or something else responsible for your pain than to take responsibility for ending your own victimhood. Our painful experiences aren't a liability, they are a gift. They give us perspective and meaning, an opportunity to find our unique purpose and our strength. One of the proving grounds for our freedom is in how we relate to our loved ones. There is no forgiveness without rage. But to ask "why" is to stay in the past, to keep company with our guilt and regret. We can't control other people and we can't control the past. You can't change what happened, you can't change what you did or what was done to you. But you can choose how you live now.
Edith Eva Eger (The Choice: Embrace the Possible)
If your boundaries have been injured, you may find that when you are in conflict with someone, you shut down without even being aware of it. This isolates us from love, and keeps us from taking in safe people. Kate had been quite controlled by her overprotective mother. She’d always been warned that she was sickly, would get hit by cars, and didn’t know how to care for herself well. So she fulfilled all those prophecies. Having no sense of strong boundaries, Kate had great difficulty taking risks and connecting with people. The only safe people were at her home. Finally, however, with a supportive church group, Kate set limits on her time with her mom, made friends in her singles’ group, and stayed connected to her new spiritual family. People who have trouble with boundaries may exhibit the following symptoms: blaming others, codependency, depression, difficulties with being alone, disorganization and lack of direction, extreme dependency, feelings of being let down, feelings of obligation, generalized anxiety, identity confusion, impulsiveness, inability to say no, isolation, masochism, overresponsibility and guilt, panic, passive-aggressive behavior, procrastination and inability to follow through, resentment, substance abuse and eating disorders, thought problems and obsessive-compulsive problems, underresponsibility, and victim mentality.
Henry Cloud (Safe People: How to Find Relationships That Are Good for You and Avoid Those That Aren't)
The repeated attempts that have been made to improve humanity - in particular to make it more peacable - have failed, because nobody has understood the full depth and vigour of the instincts of aggression innate in each individual. Such efforts do not seek to do more than encourage the positive, well-wishing impulses of the person while denying or suppressing his aggressive ones. And so they have been doomed to failure from the beginning. But psychoanalysis has different means at its disposal for a task of this kind. It cannot, it is true, altogether do away with man's aggressive instinct as such; but it can, by diminishing the anxiety which accentuates those instincts, break up the mutual reinforcement that is going on all the time between his hatred and his fear. When, in our analytic work, we are always seeing how the resolution of early infantile anxiety not only lessens and modifies the child's aggressive impulses, but leads to a more valuable employment and gratification of them from a social point of view; how the child shows an ever-grwing, deeply rooted desire to be loved and to love, and to be at peace with the world about it; and how much pleasure and benefit, and what a lessening of anxiety it derives from the fulfilment of this desire - when we see all this, we are ready to believe that what now would seem a Utopian state of things may well come true in those distant days when, as I hope, child-analysis will become as much a part of every person's upbringing as school-education is now. Then, perhaps, that hostile attitude, springing from fear and suspicion, which is latent more or less strongly in each human being, and which intensifies a hundredfold in him every impulse of destruction, will give way to kindlier and more trustful feelings towards his fellowmen, and people may inhabit the world together in greater peace and goodwill than they do now.
Melanie Klein (Love, Guilt and Reparation: And Other Works 1921-1945)
The brain is an organ of aggression, and there are many roads to this Rome of imagined conquests — so many that mental disorders, regardless of their particulars, often result in a derangement of our aggressive drive. Schizophrenics stand on the streetcorner screaming obscenely at passersby; depressives lie in their beds screaming mutely at themselves. Our gentle aggressions, the drive to be, prods us out of bed in the morning and draws us toward each other. And in each other we find what our aggressive brain desires: love. As we are wired for aggression, so we are wired to love. We are a lavishly loving species, aggressively sentimental. We are tirelessly in pursuit of fresh targets for our love. We love our children so long that they come to despise us for it. We love friends, books... We love answers. We love yesterday and next year. We love gods, for a god is there when all else fails, and God can keep all conduits of love alive — erotic, maternal, paternal, euphoric, infantile.
Natalie Angier (Woman: An Intimate Geography)
Miroslav Volf puts a finer, harder point on this: we are substantially defined not only by those we love but by who our enemies are. Our own identities are shaped by our interactions with them. As a Croatian Protestant, he was defined by the identity and convictions of Serbian Christians. We are all, whether we wish it or not, in profound relationship with our enemies, especially when that relationship is a combative one. When we respond in kind to hatred and aggression, we risk becoming like our foes. And so the biblical virtue of “love” of enemies is not romantic but practical, a love of action and intention, not of feeling. This religious wisdom would subvert the either/or choices often presented for debate in our age, where rhetoric about enemies local and global abounds. This faith requires both realism and compassion. We might need to fight our enemies or keep them at a safe remove; but we cannot let hatred, anger, and fear toward them determine our character and our actions. This cleansing of focus is the true purpose of forgiveness. I
Krista Tippett (Speaking of Faith)
In an aggressive culture, non-HSPs are favored, and that fact will be obvious everywhere. Even in the study of pumpkinseed sunfish described above, the U.S. biologists writing the article described the sunfish that went into the traps as the “bold” fish, who behaved “normally.” The others were “shy.” But were the untrapped fish really feeling shy? Why not smug? After all, one could as easily describe them as the smart sunfish, the others as the stupid ones. No one knows what the sunfish felt, but the biologists were certain because their culture had taught them to be. Those who hesitate are afraid; those who do not are normal. (Science is always filtered through culture—the true image is not lost but sure can be tinted.) Here’s a good study to remember: Research comparing elementary school children in Shanghai to those in Canada found that sensitive, quiet children in China were among the most respected by their peers, and in Canada they were among the least respected. HSPs growing up in cultures in which they are not respected have to be affected by this lack of respect.
Elaine N. Aron (The Highly Sensitive Person in Love: Understanding and Managing Relationships When the World Overwhelms You)
I hadn't told him the news yet, but in that same preternatural way he was always aware of what I was feeling or thinking, he could smell my lies a mile away. He was just giving me time to come to him. To tell him I'd be baking his bun for the next seven and a half months. ''I'm okay." Dex's chuckle filled my ears as he wrapped his arms around my chest from behind, his chin resting on the top of my head. "Just okay?" He was taunting me, I knew it. This man never did anything without a reason. And this reason had him resembling a mama bear. A really aggressive, possessive mama bear. Which said something because Dex was normally that way. I couldn't even sit around Mayhem without him or Sonny within ten feet. I leaned my head back against his chest and laughed. "Yeah, just okay." He made a humming noise deep in his throat. "Ritz," he drawled in that low voice that reached the darkest parts of my organs. "You're killin' me, honey." Oh boy. Did I want to officially break the news on the side of the road with chunks of puke possibly still on my face? Nah. So I went with the truth. "I have it all planned out in my head. I already ordered the cutest little toy motorcycle to tell you, so don't ruin it." A loud laugh burst out of his chest, so strong it rocked my body alongside his. I friggin' loved this guy. Every single time he laughed, I swear it multiplied. At this rate, I loved him more than my own life cubed, and then cubed again. "All right," he murmured between these low chuckles once he'd calmed down a bit. His fingers trailed over the skin of the back of my hand until he stopped at my ring finger and squeezed the slender bone. "I can be patient." That earned him a laugh from me. Patience? Dex? Even after more than three years, that would still never be a term I'd use to describe him. And it probably never would. He'd started to lose his shit during our layover when Trip had called for instructions on how to set the alarm at the new bar. "Dex, Ris, and Baby Locke, you done?" Sonny yelled, peeping out from over the top of the car door. "Are you friggin' kidding me?" I yelled back. Did everyone know? That slow, seductive smile crawled over his features. Brilliant and more affectionate than it was possible for me to handle, it sucked the breath out of me. When he palmed my cheeks and kissed each of my cheeks and nose and forehead, slowly like he was savoring the pecks and the contact, I ate it all up. Like always, and just like I always would. And he answered the way I knew he would every single time I asked him from them on, the way that told me he would never let me down. That he was an immovable object. That he'd always be there for me to battle the demons we could see and the invisible ones we couldn't. "Fuckin' love you, Iris," he breathed against my ear, an arm slinking around my lower back to press us together. "More than anything.
Mariana Zapata (Under Locke)
In other words, for your personal reality to be created purposefully, rather than haphazardly, you must understand your mind. But the kind of understanding required isn’t just intellectual, which is ineffective by itself. Like a naturalist studying an organism in its habitat, we need to develop an intuitive understanding of our mind. This only comes from direct observation and experience. For life to become a consciously created work of art and beauty, we must first realize our innate capacity to become a more fully conscious being. Then, through appropriately directed conscious activity, we can develop an intuitive understanding of the true nature of reality. It’s only through this kind of Insight that you can accomplish the highest purpose of meditative practice: Awakening. This should be the goal of your practice. When life is lived in a fully conscious way, with wisdom, we can eventually overcome all harmful emotions and behavior. We won’t experience greed, even in the face of lack. Nor will we have ill will, even when confronted by aggression and hostility. When our speech and action comes from a place of wisdom and compassion, they will always produce better results than when driven by greed and anger. All this is possible because true happiness comes from within, which means we can always find joy, in both good times and bad. Although pain and pleasure are an inevitable part of human life, suffering and happiness are entirely optional. The choice is ours. A fully Awake, fully conscious human being has the love, compassion, and energy to make change for the better whenever it’s possible, the equanimity to accept what can’t be changed, and the wisdom to know the difference. Therefore, make the aim of your meditation the cultivation of a mind capable of this type of Awakening.
Culadasa (John Yates) (The Mind Illuminated: A Complete Meditation Guide Integrating Buddhist Wisdom and Brain Science for Greater Mindfulness)
Those with a dismissive-avoidant attachment style tend to show higher levels of self-reliance, a reduced signaling of need for others, and a distancing, detached attitude toward parents or partners. In children, avoidance is related to aggression, antisocial behaviors, and inflated self-esteem. In adults, avoidance is related to low commitment in romantic relationships, avoidance of intimacy, higher levels of sexual coercion, and a more promiscuous, sexually unrestrained orientation.89 Dismissive-avoidant attachment bears the hallmark of a low-parenting strategy, favoring short-term relationships over intimate, long-term bonding.
Glenn Geher (Mating Intelligence Unleashed: The Role of the Mind in Sex, Dating, and Love)
Ethics has three levels, the good for self, the good for others, and the good for the transcendent purpose of a life.1 The good for self is the prudence by which you self-cultivate, learning to play the cello, say, or practicing centering prayer. Self-denial is not automatically virtuous. (How many self-denying mothers does it take to change a lightbulb? None: I’ll just sit here in the dark.) The good for a transcendent purpose is the faith, hope, and love to pursue an answer to the question “So what?” The family, science, art, the football club, God give the answers that humans seek. The middle level is attention to the good for others. The late first-century BCE Jewish sage Hillel of Babylon put it negatively yet reflexively: “Do not do unto others what you would not want done unto yourself.” It’s masculine, a guy-liberalism, a gospel of justice, roughly the so-called Non-Aggression Axiom as articulated by libertarians since the word “libertarian” was redirected in the 1950s to a (then) right-wing liberalism. Matt Kibbe puts it well in the title of his 2014 best seller, Don’t Hurt People and Don’t Take Their Stuff: A Libertarian Manifesto.2 On the other hand, the early first-century CE Jewish sage Jesus of Nazareth put it positively: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” It’s gal-liberalism, a gospel of love, placing upon us an ethical responsibility to do more than pass by on the other side. Be a good Samaritan. Be nice. In
Deirdre Nansen McCloskey (Why Liberalism Works: How True Liberal Values Produce a Freer, More Equal, Prosperous World for All)
Fear and desire for pleasure. Aggressiveness comes out of fear, predominantly, and sexuality predominantly out of the other. But they mix in the middle. Anyway, both of these impulses can destroy order, which comes out of both drives, and which is another human need I haven't yet fit into my scheme. So both have to be controlled. But in fact, despite religious commands to the contrary, aggressiveness has never really been condemned. It's been exalted, from the Bible through Homer and Virgil right down to Humbert Hemingway. Have you ever heard of a John Wayne movie being censored? did you ever see them take war books off the bookstands? They leave the genitals off Barbie and Ken, but they manufacture every kind of war toy. Because sex is more threatening to us than aggression. There have been strict rules about sex since the beginning of written rules, and even before, if we can believe myth. I think that's because it's in sex that men feel most vulnerable. In war they can hype themselves up, or they have a weapon. Sex means being literally naked and exposing your feelings. And that's more terrifying to most men than the risk of dying while fighting a bear or a soldier. Look at the rules! You can have sex if you're married, and you have to marry a person of the opposite gender, the same color and religion, an age close to your own, of the right social and economic background, even the right height, for God's sake, or else everybody gets up in arms, they disinherit you or threaten not to come to the wedding or they make nasty cracks behind your back. Or worse, if you cross color or gender lines. And once you're married, you're supposed to do only certain things when you make love: the others all have nasty names. When after all, sex itself, in itself, is harmless, and aggression is harmful. Sex never hurt anyone.
Marilyn French (The Women's Room)
He knew he needed to release her, but once he allowed his physical connection to drop away, he was uncertain if he’d ever have a chance to reconnect. Instinctively, he knew Azami was elusive, like water flowing through fingers, or the wind shifting in the trees. He needed a way to seal her to him. “How does one court a woman in Japan? Do I need your brothers’ permission?” She blinked again. Shocked. A hint of uncertainty crept into her eyes. She frowned, and he bent his head to swallow her protest before she could utter it. Her mouth trembled beneath his, and then she opened to him, like a flower, luring him deeper. Her arms slid around his neck, her body pressing tightly against his. He tightened his fingers in her hair. He was burning, through and through, from the inside out, a hot melting of bone and tissue. He hadn’t known he was lonely or even looking for something. He’d been complete. He loved his life. He was a man with teammates he trusted implicitly. He lived in wild places of beauty he enjoyed. He hadn’t considered there would be a woman who could ever fit with him, who would ever turn his insides soft and his body hard. Feel the same way, Azami. He didn’t lift his mouth, kissing her again and again because one he’d made the mistake, he was addicted and what was the use fighting it? Not when it felt so damn right. Somewhere along the line, his kiss went from sheer aggression and command, to absolute tenderness. The emotion for her rose like a volcano, encompassing him entirely, drawn from some part of him he’d never known even existed. His mouth was gentle, his hands on her, possessive, yet just as gentle. Another claiming, this coming from that deep unknown well. Feel the same way, Azami, he whispered into her mind. An enticement. A need. He waited, something in him going still, waiting for her answer.
Christine Feehan (Samurai Game (Ghostwalkers, #10))
Despite the chaos that was tearing her head apart, Tevi understood what scene Yenneg was attempting to play out, with herself as a conscripted actor. She needed to force out an explanation or denial, but no words could get past her lips. Jemeryl's presence was paralysing her, an effect far more irresistible than anything Yenneg had achieved. Tevi watched Jemeryl take another few steps forwards and then crouch down so that their eyes were no more than a foot apart. Tevi thought she would die from the shock. Yet somehow, she forced her mouth to shape the words, "Wine. Love potion." Her voice was not loud enough even to count as a whisper. Certainly nobody else in the room would have heard, yet Tevi could not control her breathing to manage anything else. At first Jemeryl showed no sign of comprehension, but then suddenly, the bewilderment on her face transformed into fury. She leapt up, her arms moving in a blurred aggressive swirl. The gesture ended with an action like hurling a ball. Blue fire erupted from Jemeryl's hands and shot towards Yenneg. The other sorcerer had obviously recognised the gesture and made an effort to protect himself. A shimmering shield sprung up before Yenneg, but it was not strong enough, and the shockwave knocked him off his feet. His shoulders slammed into the wall behind him and he crumpled to the floor. Jemeryl had been telling the truth when she claimed to vastly excel the acolytes in magical ability, not that Tevi had ever entertained doubts. Jemeryl's hands moved again, and this time Yenneg was sprawled on the floor and in no state to mount a defence. A second bolt of blue fire burst in his direction. Lightning in the form of a whip snapped across the room, intercepting Jemeryl's attack before it struck. The diverted fireball hit the wall of the summerhouse two feet from Yenneg's head and smashed through it, as if it were a stone going through wet paper.
Jane Fletcher (The Empress And the Acolyte (Lyremouth Chronicles, #3))
We often think the purpose of criticism is to nail things down. During my years as an art critic, I used to joke that museums love artists the way that taxidermists love deer, and something of that desire to secure, to stabilize, to render certain and definite the open-ended, nebulous, and adventurous work of artists is present in many who work in that confinement sometimes called the art world. A similar kind of aggression against the slipperiness of the work and the ambiguities of the artist's intent and meaning often exists in literary criticism and academic scholarship, a desire to make certain what is uncertain, to know what is unknowable, to turn the flight across the sky into the roast upon the plate, to classify and contain. What escapes categorization can escape detection altogether. There is a kind of counter-criticism that seeks to expand the work of art, by connecting it, opening up its meanings, inviting in the possibilities. A great work of criticism can liberate a work of art, to be seen fully, to remain alive, to engage in a conversation that will not ever end but will instead keep feeing the imagination. Not against interpretation, but against confinement, against the killing of the spirit. Such criticism is itself great art. This is a kind of criticism that does not pit the critic against the text, does not seek authority. It seeks instead to travel with the work and its ideas, to invite it to blossom and invite others into a conversation that might have previously seemed impenetrable, to draw out relationships that might have been unseen and open doors that might have been locked. This is a kind of criticism that respects the essential mystery of art, which is in part its beauty and its pleasure, both of which are irreducible and subjective. The worst criticism seeks to have the last word and leave the rest of us in silence; the best opens up an exchange that need never end.
Rebecca Solnit (Men Explain Things to Me)
The emotion of love is an affective emotion, directly reacting to goodness, rather than an aggressive one, reacting to challenge. Not only our so-called natural ability to grow and propagate exemplify natural love, but every faculty has a built-in affinity for what accords with its nature. By passion we mean some result of being acted on: either a form induced by the agent (like weight) or a movement consequent on the form (like falling to the ground). Whatever we desire acts on us in this way, first arousing an emotional attachment to itself and making itself agreeable, and then drawing us to seek it. The first change the object produces in our appetite is a feeling of its agreeableness: we call this love (weight can be thought of as a sort of natural love); then desire moves us to seek the object and pleasure comes to rest in it. Clearly then, as a change induced in us by an agent, love is a passion: the affective emotion strictly so, the will to love by stretching of the term. Love unites by making what is loved as agreeable to the lover as if it were himself or a part of himself. Though love is not itself a movement of the appetite towards an object, it is a change the appetite undergoes rendering an object agreeable. Favour is a freely chosen and willing love, open only to reasoning creatures; and charity―literally, holding dear―is a perfect form of love in which what is loved is highly prized. To love, as Aristotle says, is to want someone’s good; so its object is twofold: the good we want, loved with a love of desire, and the someone we want it for (ourselves or someone else), loved with a love of friendship. And just as what exist in the primary sense are subjects of existence, and properties exist only in a secondary sense, as modes in which subjects exist; so too what we love in the primary sense is the someone whose good we will, and only in a secondary sense do we love the good so willed. Friendship based on convenience or pleasure is friendship inasmuch as we want our friend’s good; but because this is subordinated to our own profit or pleasure such friendship is subordinated to love of desire and falls short of true friendship.
Thomas Aquinas (Summa Theologiae: A Concise Translation)
Doan be scared, bébé,” he rasped with a brief kiss to my lips. “I’m goan to take care of you.” Staring down into my eyes, he began prodding deeper. “I’ve wanted you for so long.” And deeper. “My God, woman!” When he was all the way in, a strangled groan burst from his chest. Pain. I just stifled a wince, far from enamored with this. Voice gone hoarse, he said, “You’re mine now, Evangeline. No one else’s.” He must be right—because Death’s presence had disappeared completely. Jack held himself still, murmuring, “Doan hurt, doan hurt.” “It’s getting better.” “Ready for more?” I nodded. Then regretted it. Pain. Between gritted teeth, he said, “Evie, I got to touch you, got to kiss you. Or you woan like this.” A bead of sweat dropped from his forehead onto my neck, tickling its way down to my collarbone. “O-okay.” Still inside me, he raised himself up on his knees, his damp chest flexing. His hands covered me, cupped, kneaded, his thumbs rubbing. When I started arching my back for more, his body moved. And it was . . . Rapture. “Jack! Yes!” In a strained tone, he said, “God almighty—I am home, Evangeline.” Another thrust had me soaring. “Finally found the place . . . I’m supposed to be.” He leaned down, delivering scorching kisses up my neck and down to my br**sts, bringing me closer and closer to a just-out-of-reach peak. Each time he rocked over me, I sensed a barely harnessed aggression in him. Between panting breaths, I said, “Don’t hold back! You don’t have to with me.” I lightly grazed my nails over his back, spurring him until he was taking me with all his might—growling with need as I moaned. Pleasure built and built . . . broke free . . . wicked bliss seized me, seized him. As I cried out uncontrollably, he yelled, “À moi, Evangeline!” Mine. “Yes, Jack, yes. . . .” Then after-shudders. A final moan. A last groan. As his weight sank heavily over me, I ran my hands up and down his back, wanting him to know how much I loved that. How much I loved him. He raised himself up on his forearms, cheeks flushed, lids heavy with satisfaction. “I knew it would be like this.” His voice was even more hoarse. “I knew from the first moment I saw you.” Stroking my hair, he started kissing my face, pressing his lips to my jaw, my forehead, the tip of my nose. “I am home, Evie Greene,” he repeated between kisses. I never wanted him to stop. He’d been an amazing lover, but his afterplay? He was adoring. “The first priest I find, I’m goan to marry you. I’m all in, peekôn.” His kisses grew more and more heated. Against my lips, he rasped, “How come I can’t ever get enough of you?
Kresley Cole (Endless Knight (The Arcana Chronicles, #2))
By Jove, what claptrap! Love can turn to contempt in the blink of an eye. When it sours, believe me, only bitterness and misery remain. Such disappointment spoils all other affection. Whereas mature, reasonable expectations cannot be disappointed, my lady, because they can be fulfilled.” “I will not marry without love, my lord.” “Nor will I pretend to love in order to marry,” he growled in reply. “I won’t spout drivel to stoke your overheated fantasies. If we can rub along, that is enough for me. In return, I will honor you, provide for you and protect you.”   “My father loved my mother deeply, devotedly. He loves her to this day. That is perfect, enduring love.”   “I cannot promise you perfection.”   “It’s not impossible to love with devotion. Swans mate for life, why can’t I?” “Perhaps because you are not an aggressive water fowl with a brain the size of an acorn. You have the option to act as a rational creature and accept that there is no such thing as perfect love in reality.”   “ I will not settle for less.” “By all means, don’t settle, Lady Elizabeth,” Clun said and rudely stood up to leave. “Don’t settle for me. Hold out for a poet. Or more appealing waterfowl for all I care. In the meantime, do not presume to lecture me about the proper basis of marriage, as if you knew better than I.
Miranda Davis (The Baron's Betrothal (Horsemen of the Apocalypse #2))
I couldn’t wait to follow through. I couldn’t wait to end this. “Your revenge?” Matthias laughed. “You’re revenge? What could you possibly do that would make any difference to me?” I looked up at Kane and he looked down at me. I smiled at him sweetly and he smiled back. I leaned in and he mirrored me. I tilted my face up to kiss him and he gladly reciprocated. Then I pulled back and swiveled my gaze to Matthias. “I will take your family away. Just like you took mine. I will pluck them from you one by one and make them suffer until they beg for death. Or, I will simply rescue them and give them a better life than you ever could.” Matthias barked out a louder laugh. “That’s sweet. It sounds like you’ve put thought into all that, but you can’t. It’s just not possible. “Sure it is,” I told him. “I’ve already gotten two of your children. Tyler isn’t here.” I gestured at Tyler. “Tyler will never be here. Unless you count that. Which being a self-respecting person, I wouldn’t. But who knows about you. And Miller isn’t here either. Miller is worse than Tyler. Look! You got Tyler to come to breakfast, but I seem to have forgotten Miller’s excuse. Could you remind me?” He stayed quiet. Which was a miracle in itself. So I continued, “I’m waiting for the right opportunity for Linley. I’ve been waiting for it for a while now. I’ve been watching her and watching her and just waiting. I cannot wait until I get her alone. I cannot wait until it’s just the two of us. It will be so fun. It’s what helps get me through these long days. Just thoughts of Linley. Just thoughts of what I will do to her and how slowly I will make those last painful moments last. And Kane? I could take him in a second. I could rip him out of your hands so fast you would blink and he would be gone. He might deny that if you ask him. But I know better. I hear everything else he says. I feel everything else he means. Kane is mine. You’re a smart man, Matthias, so don’t think for a second he isn’t. Right?” I turned to Kane. He leaned down again and kissed me. Point proved. I relaxed into Kane and let my threats soothe my soul and settle over the man I wanted to watch burn in hell. His reply was an arrogant smirk and hard eyes. “Little girl, you just asked for trouble, I’m-” “Do it,” I hissed. “Do whatever it is you want to do and see if I’m bluffing. Try me! Hurt someone I love. Hurt me. Take something away from me and see how painfully and how permanently I take something away from you.” I stood up and pushed aggressively away from the table. I stared him down the entire time. Kane let me go without even an attempt to restrain me. I was beyond that. I was beyond all of this. I was leaving. Today. Because without a doubt I would follow through with every single one of my threats. I stomped from the warehouse. I could feel Kane behind me, but he still didn’t try to slow me down. And I knew he wouldn’t. He really was mine. Matthias, Hendrix, nobody could take him from me. And he would do whatever I wanted as long as he thought we could survive. I hoped both of us could survive what I was about to ask him to do.
Rachel Higginson (Love and Decay Omnibus: Season Two (Episodes 1-12) (Love and Decay, A Novella Series Book 2))
In their book Warrior Lovers, an analysis of erotic fiction by women, the psychologist Catherine Salmon and the anthropologist Donald Symons wrote, "To encounter erotica designed to appeal to the other sex is to gaze into the psychological abyss that separates the sexes.... The contrasts between romance novels and porn videos are so numerous and profound that they can make one marvel that men and women ever get together at all, much less stay together and successfully rear children." Since the point of erotica is to offer the consumer sexual experiences without having to compromise with the demands of the other sex, it is a window into each sex's unalloyed desires. ... Men fantasize about copulating with bodies; women fantasize about making love to people. Rape is not exactly a normal part of male sexuality, but it is made possible by the fact that male desire can be indiscriminate in its choice of a sexual partner and indifferent to the partner's inner life--indeed, "object" can be a more fitting term than "partner." The difference in the sexes' conception of sex translates into a difference in how they perceive the harm of sexual aggression. ... The sexual abyss offers a complementary explanation of the callous treatment of rape victims in traditional legal and moral codes. It may come from more than the ruthless exercise of power by males over females; it may also come from a parochial inability of men to conceive of a mind unlike theirs, a mind that finds the prospect of abrupt, unsolicited sex with a stranger to be repugnant rather than appealing. A society in which men work side by side with women, and are forced to take their interests into account while justifying their own, is a society in which this thick-headed incuriosity is less likely to remain intact. The sexual abyss also helps to explain the politically correct ideology of rape. ... In the case of rape, the correct belief is that rape has nothing to do with sex and only to do with power. As (Susan) Brownmiller put it, "From prehistoric times to the present, I believe, rape has played a critical function. It is nothing more or less than a conscious process of intimidation by which all men keep all women in a state of fear." ... Brownmiller wrote that she adapted the theory from the ideas of an old communist professor of hers, and it does fit the Marxist conception that all human behavior is to be explained as a struggle for power between groups. But if I may be permitted an ad feminam suggestion, the theory that rape has nothing to do with sex may be more plausible to a gender to whom a desire for impersonal sex with an unwilling stranger is too bizarre to contemplate. Common sense never gets in the way of a sacred custom that has accompanied a decline of violence, and today rape centers unanimously insist that "rape or sexual assault is not an act of sex or lust--it's about aggression, power, and humiliation, using sex as the weapon. The rapist's goal is domination." (To which the journalist Heather MacDonald replies: "The guys who push themselves on women at keggers are after one thing only, and it's not reinstatement of the patriarchy.")
Steven Pinker (The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined)
I opened the door with a smile on my face that soon melted when I saw his messy appearance. The doorframe held him up as he leaned all of his weight against it. Expressionless, bloodshot eyes stared back at me as he lifted his hand and ran it roughly down his unshaved face. His hair was disheveled and there was blood on the front of his shirt. Panic rose up as I took him in. I rushed to him and ran my fingers down his body, as I checked for injuries. “You’re bleeding! Oh my God, Devin! What happened? Are you OK?” “It’s not my blood,” he slurred. I took a better look at his gorgeous face. His unfocused eyes attempted to meet mine and it was then that the smell of liquor reached me. “You’re drunk?” “Abso-fucking-lutely.” He attempted to move toward me and almost fell over. I wrapped my arms around him and helped him into my apartment. Once we made it to the couch I let him collapse onto the cushion before I went straight to work on his clothes. I removed his blood-stained shirt first and threw it to the side. Quickly checked him over again just to be sure that he wasn’t injured somewhere. His skin felt cold and clammy against my fingertips. His knuckles were busted open, so I went to the bathroom and got a wet towel and the first aid kit. I cleaned his fingers then wrapped them up. I felt fingers in my hair and looked up to see a very drunk Devin staring back at me. “You’re so fucking beautiful,” he whispered as his heavy head fell against the back of my couch again. Shaking my head, I dropped onto my knees on the floor and removed his boots. Once I was done getting Devin out of his shoes, I went to the hallway closet and pulled out a blanket for him. When I got back to the couch, he was standing there looking back at me in all his tattooed, muscled glory. He was still leaning a bit to the side when his eyes locked on mine. “Come here,” he rasped. He looked as if he was about to crumble and I couldn’t tell if it was the alcohol or if something was really breaking him down. “Are you OK, baby?” I asked. He closed his eyes and sighed. “I love it when you call me baby.” I went to him and he groaned as I softly ran my hands up his chest and put my arms around his neck. On my tiptoes, I softly kissed the line of his neck and his chin. “Tell me what happened, Devin.” When he finally opened his eyes, he looked at me differently. The calm and collected Devin was gone and an anxiety-ridden shell of a man stood before me. His shoulders felt tense beneath my fingers and his eyes held a crazed demeanor. “I need you, Lilly.” He captured my face softly in his hands as he slurred the words. “Please tell me what happened?” “Make it go away, baby,” he whispered as he leaned in and started to kiss me. I let him as I melted against his body. He collapsed against the couch once more, but this time he took me with him. Not once did he break our kiss, and soon, I felt his velvet tongue against mine. I kissed him back and let my fingers play in the hair at the back of his neck. He broke the kiss and started down the side of my neck. “I need you, Lilly,” he repeated against my skin. “I’m here.” I bit at my bottom lip to stop myself from moaning. “Please, just make it all go away,” he drunkenly begged. “I don’t know what’s going on, but tell me what to do to make it better. I want to make it better, Devin.” I stopped him and stared into his eyes as I waited for his response. “Don’t leave me,” he said desperately. “I’m not going anywhere. I’m here. I’ll do whatever it takes to make it better.” I wanted to cry. He looked so hurt and afraid. It was strange to see such a strong, confident man so lost and unsure. He flipped me onto my back on the couch and crawled on top of me. His movements were less calculated—slower than usual. “I want you. I need to be inside you,” he said aggressively.
Tabatha Vargo (On the Plus Side (Chubby Girl Chronicles, #1))