“Vengeance is a monster of appetite, forever bloodthirsty and never filled.”
― Richelle E. Goodrich, The Tarishe Curse
We all know what it is like to have hate inside our bodies, to feel wronged, and to think of ways to achieve vengeance on those who have hurt us. Sometimes, vengeance is the greatest motivator of all. Our society seems to be bent on revenge, getting back at those who injured us. Retribution has gotten so large, it seems I am almost losing track of all the things I need to take my revenge on.
When I turn on the news, the first thing I see are the people who have done terrible things to society, and what society plans on doing back to them. For example, taking the perpetrator to prison for life, or just giving them death. I have realized, even as a young child that our prison systems are not designed for rehabilitation, but instead for punishment, and that was a very scary notion indeed. Prisons are designed for vengeance. And even after the perpetrator is released, they are to be shunned by society, their crimes to follow them forever, to ever find a job or go back to school near impossible. I have to ask myself this, once revenge has been delivered, does society feel better. I would have to say that of course, their is some great momentary satisfaction. But after the satisfaction subsides, it dissipates, and then I am looking for someone else to exact my rage upon.
I was inside Meijer’s today, and walking past the aisles where they have what seems an endless abyss of tabloids, with covers so glossy it reflects the cheap fluorescent lights up above, I see a very interesting cover. It seems that Tailor Swift is going to war with Kim Kardashian, what strong words! I have to ponder, why would these two entertainment icons be at war with each other, and why would anybody even care? I then grasped the concept that America loves to pit one person against another, because vengeance has turned out to be very entertaining. We have many TV shows about revenge, from everything from being at war with zombies to war with skeletor. Come to think of it, war is just a long, drawn out, organized revenge.
With all my preaching aside, I am going to have to say that I do not like vengeance simply because having that hate and anger inside me, is very uncomfortable. Love and compassion just feels so much better, and so much less draining on my nervous and digestive system. Being angry has been scientifically proven to cause terrible diseases on the body, everything from cancer to strokes, to ulcers. So I decided, that instead of looking at people as bad, who deserve payback, maybe I should instead look at them as needing compassion. Now, of course that is easy to say, because if depends on what they did. Perhaps the crime is so bad, they need to be taken out of society and compassion for that individual is near impossible. But speaking for myself, if I am able to reframe the situation in my mind, from feelings of hate and transform them into feelings of care and empathy, my bodily functions just feel so much better. It seems people who do heinous things, do not need extra hate from me, because they probably already getting it from themselves. And if it were up to me, I would take them out of society, but not for revenge, but for rehabilitation, and I would do that because it would better benefit society. Because once that person is out of prison, and if they are their strictly for punishment, they are going to want to exact revenge on us, and around and around and around it goes.
So in conclusion, yes, vengeance does feel sweet and good, but only for the moment. Try to reframe the situation into compassion, it is going to feel so much better for you. And really, their is no greater revenge, then someone who is doing well in life, especially on those who tried to hurt you.