I had a thought cross my mind the other day – what we often see in the media is good vs. evil. The villain versus the hero. The evil school shooter. The good princess. But what if the world wasn’t about good versus evil? What if we have it all wrong?
I used to be petrified of the things I would pick up on and see. In my short lifetime, I have experienced many different, hard-to-explain things, that many people may not be able to sense or see. I vividly remember on an early evening with my (then) boyfriend (now fiancé), we went to a cemetery to see some family members’ graves. After, we explored the cemetery, looking at the different names on tombstones. It was a surreal experience, as I had opened myself up (subconsciously at that time – as I had no control as I do now) to pick up on things that could be deemed “beyond” this realm. With each tombstone, it was as if I had a brief snippet of their life. Of course, I wrote it up to be my vivid imagination. But then there was one section of the cemetery, that had a very strong negativity to it. This negativity was closest to some of the oldest graves in the cemetery, but there was a very nagging feel to it. Even though those graves could be defined as the “creepiest,” the negativity was specifically not originating from them.
I turned to my boyfriend James and stated, “There’s something very negative here. And it’s not those graves.” He shifted a bit uncomfortably, as I approached one of the larger grave stones, marked “MAXWELL” in faded letters. Beyond the stone was a high fence with lots of thick ivy. I stared down at the tombstone, and despite the letters burning into my memory, it was not that grave. We left shortly after.
Once back at his parents house (far away from the cemetery), James admitted that he felt very uncomfortable. I initially felt ashamed, as we were still early in our relationship, and felt like he thought I was too “weird” for him. He corrected me, saying that it wasn’t that I picked up on the negativity, but that where I picked up on the negativity was the portion of the cemetery closest to the rumored “murder house” in town.
The “murder house” was a rumored house where one family was killed by the father. The father killed himself after. Another family had moved in, and eerily, the father murdered that family too. The house was condemned, boarded up, with such overgrowth that you could not see it from the cemetery. You could only see it when driving by an abandoned mill, on the other side of his town.
I sat on James’s bed, feeling uneasy. We sat in silence for a few moments, when some awful screech traveled down the street. We convinced ourselves it was some sort of animal, though for some reason, my mind had instantly pictured a man screaming while on fire. It was unnerving.
Over time, this had all ventured in the back of my mind. One day, as we were driving a different route, I was sitting in the passenger seat of his car. We were having casual conversation when he remarked, “That’s the house,” pointing toward it. I turned my head to look, and saw the dilapidated structure peering through the overgrowth. My stomach sank to my feet, as time stopped for a brief moment. I was looking at the house, but something awful was giving a searing gaze back at me. The feeling was so overwhelmingly powerful, I fought the urge to gag and vomit. Never had I experienced something so awful. So evil.
But as I have grown older, I do not believe there is such a thing as good and evil. Or, at least, not in the way our society defines it. Instead, there is love and fear.
Fear is what perpetuates the “bad” in this world, when we really think of it. Fear prevents us from pursuing our passions, in fear of what other people may think, of what money we can make, or of not being “good enough.” Fear perpetuates divide, with fear of being “different,” rejected, or made fun of. Fear of losing power, of losing life, of losing money, of losing time, of living life… Fear causes us to cease up, firmly plant our feet in the ground, and buckle down in negativity. Fear is perhaps the carnal human, in that it is meant to make us survive when facing lions or tigers. But now, the lions and tigers are ourselves, and we have grown to fear one another, and our own potential.
Love is the cure to fear. It allows us to act without fear. Think of it this way – if you truly love someone, would you be willing to give anything for their life? You would not think twice in stopping a bullet for them, or sacrificing yourself to protect them. There is no question. It is natural for us to love, and unnatural for us to fear. We are not made to kill each other out of fear of rejection, humiliation, or loss of power. We are not made to fear our own passions and potential. Fear festers when there is lack of love, spreading within ourselves and creating that uncomfortable “safe” zone, where you work 9-5 with stable benefits but are still craving something more. Fear is the limiter of investors, thinkers, and great entrepreneurs. We are made to support each other, unconditionally, and to raise each other up in times of need. We are made to love ourselves, and shine bright to inspire others. We are made to love each other, to help others meet their full potential, and grow together as humankind.
It is that simple.
Our brains overcomplicate, creating systems and money and false categories and countries and boundaries and arbitrary rules… But ultimately, if we follow the prospect of love, we are guided on the right path. We give to those in need. We do not hesitate to live to our full potential. We shine, together.
There is no good and evil, though certainly fear and love may create the appearance of something (or someone) inherently “good” or “evil.” Whatever it was that stared me down within the “murder house” had festered with a lack of love, instilling fear into my bones because that was all it could remember and resonate. We can choose to be “heroes” by choosing love. We have the power to challenge our fearful, carnal minds in achieving more than we ever imagined. And perhaps the terrifying experiences I have had with the unexplained are not necessarily because “evil” wanted the good in me gone. Perhaps, instead, it is a desperate cry for love – to have light shed – from someone that can “see” them and possibly help.