Hello Curious Friend. Welcome to my book about Hate. The number tells you where you are in the sequence. I look forward to your comments.
Study How? (Continued)
As a final observation on definition, I will also acknowledge that it’s possible to move too much to the other extreme, and that is to define something too much. There is also a cost for this because it takes work to create a definition, more work to test and create a consensus, and more work still to learn and teach it.
In the case of hate, we must invest considerable effort toward a better and greater understanding. We must consider this a modest investment as the potential rewards of clarifying what hate truly is could transform our world into a paradise.
With that potential reward in mind, I am willing to do whatever it takes to further our understanding of hate, like writing this book. And since you’re still reading, I assume you’re willing to roll up your sleeves as well. So now let’s continue surveying the landscape and consider the terrain. Like unproductive rocks or inhospitable swamps, we can disregard certain aspects of it that are unlikely to yield benefits.
In the case of our examples, we have several that can be easily discarded. These are anything having to do with vegetables (from my broccoli example), the stories referencing the sports teams, and finally, the infamous couple on the magazine cover. In other words, if “hate” really is a form of “dislike,” then we’ll ignore it. In our landscape then, we will investigate the stories of the father protecting his daughter, the abused college student, and the natural death of an unnatural preacher.
Before dissecting these stories, let’s talk about the qualities of what we expect to see. Much like the artist who prefers to record his landscape during the “magic hour,” we too must be choosy about what we are observing in order to ensure it is of the highest quality possible.
The painter, poet and photographer consider the magic hour to be just after dawn and before dusk. Those are the times when the sun’s light is shifted towards the red portion of the spectrum, enhancing and deepening colors, making the land come alive.
We must attempt to do the same with our landscape. In our case, we are “observing” events well after they have happened. In some cases, we are reading stories that could have started as rumors, which then acquired layers of legitimacy at the hands of other editors as they repeated the story.
It may have started as a dry police report, or as an obituary listing, or as a press conference statement announcing the start of a lawsuit. Regardless, the reporting of these events inevitably passed through an unknown number of people aside from the credited writers. These secondary players all contributed something to the published stories via their state of mind, personality quirks, prejudices and personal agendas.
Chief among these secondary players were the editors, who likely imposed their own subtle bias into the process. It’s easy to imagine these editors having cut the length of any of these stories due to space constraints, or forcing the writer to make the accounts more dramatic to appeal to the perception that readers like punchier conclusions and heightened conflict.
To be continued …