I used to think that the most pervasive and consuming sin was lust. It was the main thing that got between me and peace, between me and faith, between me and God. But moments of celibacy and abstinence, like any other form of fasting, will reveal things inside you that you didn’t know.
Like the fact that I have a temper of Hiroshima proportions. The sin called WRATH.
This is what I have learned. My fuse is a long fuse with little warning snaps along the way. There are little tiny explosions every few steps into Piss-Off-Bushlings territory. Then there is a keg of gunpowder of a reasonable size. It’s probably what an average person would call big. But that is not the end of the fuse. Once that explosion kicks off that is only the beginning. There is silence for a while as the fallout subsides. Any surviving antagonist that continues past this point is now in no-man’s land. Here the fuse is its longest. Probably because what waits at the end is a monster that scares even me. It could take a few years to get there, hundreds of tiny infractions, but when the H-Bomb blows nothing survives. And when it blows, even I bleed.
The Nuclear Temper of Bushlings
Bushlings is a loving, giving, understanding person in pursuit of wisdom and peace. She does yoga to flush her mind, goes to church for divine inspiration, never sinks to physical fighting, does her “WooooSahhhhs” and has never been one to start an argument.
But tread thee past her warning keg and Bushlings sheds her personality entirely, leaving behind only a fiery core hotter than the sun, a splinter of her personality, that is in the business of destroying thy life.
She leaves Jane behind and becomes the Phoenix. Destruction becomes an obssession – unless she can head it off with yoga, church, prayer and other invitations to the Divine Above to intervene. She imagines not thy death but thy repeated and total humiliation. She struggles with her character and her powerful sense of justice through decisions on how to destroy thy life. Should she reveal thine bitter and ugly truths to a judging world? The right word in the right place? Or should she nudge thee with her superior tactics of manipulation to reveal thine truths thyself? She is likely to choose the one that causes the most harm, the one more true to the subtle and deadly nature of her Phoenix – the nature that comes alive with the H-Bomb.
The only thought that does not cross her mind is to do nothing. Even in this fractured part of her personality is she a “doer“.
This is the animal I seek to harness. The creature that loses all sense of good and sees only a target, the one that refers to herself in the third person and the antagnoist-about-to-turn-victim in old english. And boy do I have my hands full. My hands are often blistered by the pull of these reigns. So caught am I between the fiery latin blood of my mother and the self-destructive terror of my father’s Irish history that it takes a system override and all of my energy to bring the temperature down. I have to tell myself, every morning for about a month, the gruesome details of what the fallout of my full-powered explosion would look like – the collateral damage, innocent civilians with torn limbs and broken spirits. Is it worth it all to me?
So far the self-control has worked. I have never gotten physical. The warning keg blows probably once a month, but this nuclear explosion has probably gone off four times in my whole life. I shake, my face goes red, and things come out of my mouth and off my fingers that I myself stand in awe of. But the self-control is a band-aid, not a cure. To not let the temperature get so hot would be the cure.
It is the family illness. Every one of the women in my family have it. I am the eldest of six girls and all six of us labour under the same temperament. From these six collectively, tyres have been slashed and lives forever changed. And I am the eldest, the shining example.
Time to turn that into a reality.
I invite you to help me as I reasearch this disease, its causes and its cures. What are your insights on the subject? What is your advice?