By the Way, I Forgive You (Kind of)
There are so many people feeling misrepresented...So many people feeling unloved. Boys feeling marginalized and forced into these kind of awkward shapes of masculinity that they do or don't belong in... so many men and boys are trans or disabled or shy. Little girls who got so excited for the last election, and are dealing with the fallout. The song is just for people that feel under-represented, unloved or illegal."
Lyrics from the song
Let 'em laugh while they can; Let' em spin, let 'em scatter in the wind; I have been to the movies, I've seen how it ends; And the joke's on them
We want to love everybody as best we can and yet we also want the recipients of our anger (the people who do bad things) to receive their comeuppance. The latter is especially pronounced in politics. I can think of a political figure or two whom I think deserve comeuppance. I find myself hoping they will suffer the consequences of their wrongdoing. I take delight in their disappointments and imagine them going to jail. I would like to pretend that one day the "positive" emotions will win the battle in my heart, but I'm doubtful. How about you?
I like Whitehead because he takes feeling so seriously and invites us to think of God, among other ways, as an indwelling lure to live with contrasts in our emotional lives.
We can sometimes pretend that the ideal of life lies in feeling one positive emotion fully, thereby having what some might call a “pure heart.” We are all about compassion, or hospitality, or love, or justice. But I suspect that genuine spirituality lies in living with the tensions, courageously. Thus, I want to put in a word for mixed emotions: a spirituality of a conflicted heart. There is a strength in living with ambiguity and also a beauty.
The title of Brandi Carlile’s album is By the Way, I Forgive You. The very title, with its ironic depiction of forgiveness as an afterthought, an addendum, carries within it the idea that forgiveness is born of anger, and that the anger never completely disappears. Wide souls are those who can live with this tension, without pretending to be pure hearts. Blessed are the conflicted, for theirs is the kingdom of honesty.