Essay, Reflections

Caught in the throes of “passion”…

That got your attention, did it?  😉

Alas, sorry to disappoint, but this post is actually about the word “passion.”

I’m kind of on a language kick these days, spurred on by comments of friends and other bloggers. Not to mention my own ongoing Conversation with the Other which shall no doubt continue soon.  And today I am exploring the word “passion”…

My friend Sha’Tara recently mentioned “emotionally charged” words in a comment…

(Please find and explore her blog here:

https://shatara46.wordpress.com

…as she has some wonderful, wise, witty, and worthwhile words to share…)

…and that got me thinking about “trigger” words; you know, the kind that cause a knee-jerk type of reaction of some sort.  Passion seems to me to be one of those words, invoking colorful imagery and a diverse range of feeling, depending upon its context and form…

When I think passion, I visualize the color red, and I feel excitement anticipation, eagerness and vitality; all appropriate for a word that actually means emotionally intense.  But couple it with the word “throes” and the red begins to glow, as heat and steam seep in…

Bind it to the words “crime of” and the red takes on a darker hue, resembling blood shed by the gallon; a jealous zealot’s passionate choice (or not, depending on your point of view)…

Impassion” shifts the spectrum a bit, bringing in a deep orange color with a sense of purpose thrown in; motivating and directing me to accomplish some-thing…

Then there’s “compassion,” which appears to me a soft dark blue, evoking feelings of kindness and mercy; a desire to treat others with fairness, gentleness, and a lack of judgment, too…

And “dispassion” with its deep purple tone; an awareness without a need to act at all…

And just for fun, because I can, I’d add passionfruit and flowers to the pan; soft yellows and greens, sweet flavors and scents.  I hear they both make excellent teas…

A virtual rainbow of colors, an emotional frenzy, but all share a common root: passion…

Overused?  Perhaps, but understandably so, as it’s such a versatile word…

Misunderstood?  Quite likely and quite often, I’d think, because it’s such a volatile word; our interpretation, in any context, will likely be immediate, responsive, even reactive, easily leading to misinterpretation…

Clearly a “trigger” word…

Even the sound of it, that soft “sh…” sound in the middle, is evocative, reminding me of snakes in the grass, or a garden, I suppose…

And just like that we might be thrown back into the throes once again, where passion destroys innocence, leaving us all exposed to that darker form of passion and all the crimes it could commit…

And the “Passion of Christ”…?  How does that fit in?

 

 

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23 thoughts on “Caught in the throes of “passion”…

    • Indeed! And I have noticed by following you, David, that you excel at using them to great effect, both denotatively and connotatively! I love reading your work… 🙂

      Perhaps that is why I love writers so much; they explore the many places that language itself can take us, and that always intrigues me…

      Thanks for stopping in, sir! You are always welcome here… 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Great write! The word, “passion” is one of my favourites, and compassion is what I chose to make my life’s purpose and I agree with your choice of colour for compassion: that’s it, exactly. If your last question wasn’t rhetorical, the “Passion” of Christ has to be understood in context (not the movie). It actually lasted a lifetime for that individual, a choice he believed in (assuming there ever lived such a person, and I believe not just one, but many individuals walked that particular path in man’s historical times); his choice of being a divine avatar; that his life’s sacrifice, to be ended by horrible torment in the prime of it, would be sufficient to open a path of redemption and salvation for the entire species. It would have worked too, if, and only if, every Earthian who caught the passion changed her/his life to a matching path of selfless commitment: to compassion. His great mistake was believing that people, by believing in his “story” would be moved to change. Instead, all they want is for him to pay the bill, while they stand around the counter for the change to put in their own pockets.

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    • Powerful words, Sha’Tara, but I cannot completely disagree. I hold out hope for redemption still by telling myself there is an exception to every “rule”; that humans are, by nature, contrary beings. Tell them they cannot do something, and some will find a way; tell them they shouldn’t and they will be motivated to begin… Perhaps if enough humans can be convinced they are doomed to fail, they will yet find a way to turn it around…

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      • I think you meant to write you can’t completely agree – and why should you? It’s my opinion, one person’s viewpoint, based on observation. I can understand your take on the reverse psychology. Unfortunately for that view, and history bears this out, that usually only works in the negative, i.e., make a “good” law beneficial to all of society and the very first thing individuals do is by-pass, ignore, vilify, nullify and break that law. Earthians are by nature incredibly selfish creatures that take and take and it’s never enough until they break the camel’s back and find themselves staring at a very distant sky from the hole they dug themselves into. Current times, when a few hundred individuals collectively control more wealth than billions, exemplify this truism. Yes, there are a few “com-passionate” people out there, such as Doctors without Borders, for example, and what are the elites doing to them? Bombing their hospitals and killing them to drive them away from the killing fields. Why? They don’t want any credible witnesses to what is going on. And what is the majority busy doing about it? Nothing. Business as usual, corruption as usual, “Let’s go out for dinner and take in a movie” mentality rules. Sorry, bit of a rant.

        Liked by 1 person

      • No, actually, I meant I can’t completely DISagree with you; I want to, but I know that you are right. I was employing that no-no, the double negative, to express my distress at having to admit that most humans today are not worth “saving.”

        And it is true that reverse psychology is usually only effective when employed negatively; hence my assertion that humans can NOT redeem themselves, in the hope that some shall prove contrary enough to try…

        I think we are actually close to being on the same page, Sha’Tara, but for the strength of our convictions; what you see as a done deal, I call an almost lost cause…

        But then, I’ve always been a bit wishy-washy, embracing my watery nature, and refusing to fully commit to any particular stance or circumstance… 🙂

        And I welcome a well voiced rant; though I would not acknowledge a meaningless tirade expressed for the sole purpose of self-aggrandizement. Yours is clearly the former…

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      • Thanks for the explanation, Lisa. I was born right smack in the center of Libra – and I know that that has a powerful effect on the reasoning process and does affect how I view situations, issues, events… and history. From my perspective the world of man has passed the point of no return. Considering the obdurate, unrepentant, nature of the creature I don’t see its demise as a negative factor.

        Man has intelligence. Information. Has received guidance in the past. Has access to teachings about right and wrong. Has a conscience. Has basic experiences with love, enough to know how to act towards others and strangers. The instructions on how to live in a peaceful and balanced world have existed for millennia and with the advent of “universal” education most Earthians can now read, plus they have other ways of getting information verbally. Excuses for the evil they perpetrate upon the planet, themselves and those unfortunate creatures who share this small world with them? None. They love violence, pure and simple. They use it to profit from and even as entertainment.

        Why should such a species be allowed to propagate, perhaps even develop FTL technology and head out into space to conquer, decimate, pollute and corrupt other worlds? It was stopped before (ref: the tower of Babel story) and it is being stopped again. Deservedly so. You reap what you sow. The seeds of this time were sown through two thousand years and more of oppressive, blood-shedding imperialism and now it’s harvest time. To me it’s as simple as cause and effect. I didn’t need to read the book of Revelation to understand what is happening now.

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      • I see your point…

        My initial, knee-jerk reaction is to want to defend those few who DO understand, and who DO deserve to carry on. And naturally, I consider myself among them, being kind, compassionate, wise and such…

        And then I realise I’m sitting here in my double bed (alone), my bills are paid, my belly is full (and I’m carrying more than a few extra pounds), I’m typing on my cell phone with my laptop beside me and the tv on… well, you get the picture.

        I may abhor violence, but I eat meat. I may detest the destruction of the environment, but not enough to give up my warm home, my car, or my hard-earned toys. I may be disgusted by the economic and political injustices I see all around me, but not enough to go put myself on the front lines to get arrested, wounded, or killed…

        No, I am like every other isolated idealist living in my ivory tower; I am a hypocrite. And if I cannot justify my own salvation, then how can I justify another’s?

        Sometimes the greatest form of love (and compassion) is letting go…

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      • Literally letting go? I took that path less traveled once, Lisa, in 1980. I did it without thinking about repercussions, my usual style… and I lost everything that mattered to me then: family, friends, stuff. Well, sure, 35 years later, looking back, I’d do it again. It was jumping off a cliff and it worked out for me because I’m a natural fighter and overcomer and I have always had a better vision of the top when standing on the bottom. But if I were “advising” anyone, I’d certainly warn them about the interim costs of such a plunge. Fools rush in where angels fear to tread… Sometimes, for some hard and passionate natures, chucking it all at once is the only way but there must be better ways. I’d never recommend “my” choice to anyone but if anyone wanted to make the same choice I wouldn’t counsel against it either because it works. Ultimately, the point is to change ourselves; to literally change our spots and there is no painless way to accomplish that. So we look at the things that empower change. I came up with compassion through a constant needling of self-sacrifice. Personal denial of things I could do, or could have, but didn’t need, thus freeing up “energy” I could use to help others. With my pension I’ve sort of become a one-person volunteer help “organization” without ever needing to appeal to others for funds or backup. The strangers I help are now my family. The ‘stuff’ I have is my ways and means. The kayak and my old camera… well, that’s my treat when I need to get away and remember there’s still some beautiful nature out there. Somehow I’ve created a balance of joy and sorrow. Where most “change agents” go wrong is they set out the change the world. Can’t be done. We change ourselves; mold ourselves to the choices we make; get better at judging and gentler at applying bandages. As much as I judge human nature harshly, that’s how much I “force” myself to care for individuals even more gently; with greater empathy; letting myself be moved by their helplessness, or their happiness when together we make something good happen.

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      • Beautifully put, Sha’Tara! By letting go, I merely meant letting go of the idealistic hope that Earthians, as a species, are salvageable. For such hope brings its own pressure to bear on circumstances already buckling under their own weight…

        Your wisdom shines through your words, as does your passion and compassion. I could not have asked for a better discussion to illustrate the essence of the original post, and for that I am extremely grateful! Thank you…

        Shine on, dear Lady! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you, Lisa. My “wisdom” is actually quite paltry when I compare it to what was shared with me by the Teachers over a period of 20 years (a long time for one Earthian life-time, but short for them, or so I gathered.) During the time they interacted with me and gave me insight into the cosmos, as well as into my own mind and the infinite “space” that mind wanders through, I learned the basics of sentient interaction. I became a vegetarian and almost immediately became healthier and felt increasingly younger. (In Earth years I’m 70, but in awareness, I’m barely the equivalent of 20.) Under their tutelage I began to “see” non-human life as equal to my own. I learned how to gain energy by giving it away selectively through a calculated process. I learned the difference between love and compassion too, and what a difference that has made! And finally, perhaps the greatest breakthrough: I learned how joy and sorrow interact and support each other and how a human being is “used” to provide the link between these two energies. When the human isn’t available joy and sorrow do not manifest. Instead you have pain, suffering, pleasure and fun, the shallow and meaningless “emotions” that turn people to hate, zombieism or hedonism. All this to say, it isn’t “my” wisdom but the result of listening, then testing, or acting upon what I was being given so freely and with so much dedication. I don’t know if everybody has access to their own “Teachers” – I can only suspect that yes, they are out there; they are available; they are on call and waiting for that opening that will let them do their job. I know this, that mankind needs them desperately, especially now. They’re not the last line of defense, we’re past any such, but they’re those that will guide the few out of the mire after the final and crushing defeat of man’s Powers and his worthless, useless pride.

        Liked by 1 person

      • This is deep, and I so want to respond, as I am beset by both reactions and questions. The ongoing balance, though, is time, as today is the longest day of the week for me. More than that, though, I want to more fully explore what you have “triggered” in me…

        It was my hope that this original post might generate a “meaningful” conversation with others besides myself, and you (and others here) have honored me with such. I think, or feel might be the better word, that I want to extract this particular thread of commentary and create a separate post to explore it more fully…

        Likely won’t happen before tomorrow, though, so I wanted to acknowledge your comment, even if I am not, now, responding in a meaningful manner…

        Seriously grateful for you taking the time to share your vision and wisdom with me, as you have opened my eyes and heart to different perspectives and paths… 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Now this is a picture in words…begs for music… some of the 1960s best would have worked with this.
    Sha’Tara kind of beat me to the punch with The Passion of Christ (I would be but tweaking it from a Catholic Christian perspective).

    Liked by 1 person

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