Monday, April 30, 2012

Primordial Emotions

    I freely admit that my emotions are prone to run rampant. And as a rule, I am okay with that. Although there are times that when, for my own sanity, I feel I need to rein myself in a bit. Make a vain attempt at control. Keep myself in check. It does not work very well, and I find myself escalating through the gamut at lightening speed. It is a regular occurrence that should leave me feeling depleted and injured, but it does not. If anything it has an opposite effect, leaving me feeling manic and powerful, at least once the initial shock is over.
   My wild emotions, manic and euphoric, exhausting and painful, have led me to consider emotions and their impact. Emotions are not quantifiable, measurable, or even understandable. They are inexplicable, unpredictable and volatile. Mine are, anyway. Emotions burn themselves into our memories, far deeper than actual events, we remember how events made us feel. We will forget details, words, actions, intent, but we do not forget how we felt. To "forgive and forget" is a nice sentiment, but unrealistic. We can forgive, that is within our power. But we cannot make ourselves forget. I often wish we could. There are memories I would gladly wipe completely from memory if I could, for those are the fodder for the demons that torment me.
    The negative emotions are the most powerful. Those emotions wrapped around pain, loss, betrayal, fear, humiliation, failure, rejection. Those are the emotions that will return, unbidden, unwanted, to blindside us with brutal impact. Out of nowhere they will materialize, in raw power, that does not fade easily over time. Woken in the night to tears, shocked in broad daylight with panic, beaten down over and over with the deep pains of harsh memories. We remember emotional anguish for what seems an eternity. We may forgive, but to forget is really beyond our capabilities.
    The sweet memories are often more difficult to recapture, and much quicker to lose their initial intensity. I close my eyes, remembering the laughter of my children, a first kiss, the caress of a lover, a triumph of spirit, a victory against the odds. These memories stay as reminders of a life worth living but they cannot carry the same visceral impact of pain. This seems unfair. It feels as if I am cheated out of the pleasure of reliving cherished moments. Yes, if I focus, I can feel the shiver of excitement from pleasures remembered, but it is fleeting. There are recent memories that I can capture and hold, feeling their warmth and excitement, and they do sustain me. These memories are like a talisman against the dark emotional ghosts that seem to lurk just beyond my vision, waiting to pounce. I hold the sweetness in the front of my brain, keeping my finger on its pulse, maintaining contact, holding it dear, reminding myself that despite the painful past there is delight to be found.
    But it begs the question; why do the negative emotions hang on with such tenacity, when the sweet emotions seem fragile and fleeting? Is it primordial? An instinctual holdover from a time when pain, loss, fear, rejection and failure were reactions to potentially deadly situations that we should not ever forget, for the survival of the species? Do we remember anger and hurt as a protective mechanism against foes, long past, that may have in reality been deadly enemies, not merely insensitive idiots oblivious to their impact on the world around them? Are emotions survival mechanisms? Do we fall in love as an instinctual way to form a bond with a potential mate, to overlook their flaws, to stand beside them during the onslaught of life? Is that why love is so all encompassing, powerful, overwhelming and earth shattering? Is it our instincts kicking in? Our emotions going beyond reason, linking with instinct? It is said, "the heart wants what the heart wants," but is it "survival wants what survival needs?" Love and passion as a survival tool? I think it is an interesting idea.
    So, then can I look at my emotional enthusiasm as being in closer touch with my instincts? Am I allowing myself to be in deeper contact with the primordial Me? Is this why my rampant emotions seem to alarm most civilized people? Most tend to be fearful of wildness, savagery, animalistic impulses, instinct, gut reaction, the power of desire, the impact of uncontrolled emotions. Most shy away from such "uncivilized" behavior, it is not socially acceptable. I want to revel in my animal nature, my primal desires, the power of my emotions. Even when the negative emotions rise from my dark past to cause tears, panic, longing, ache, they make me feel alive. My rampant emotions acknowledge my fiercely passionate nature, fuel my fire, unleash my desires. I accept the pain that may accompany the pleasure, because instincts should not be denied. We all need to accept our primordial passions, even if we do not understand them. They are not to be feared, avoided, nullified. They are to be embraced, indulged, enjoyed. I embrace my primitive, primordial passions, and will continue to unleash them on the unsuspecting.  

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