Hail to Hegel’s Dialectical Explosive Synthesis

Let me name for you some of my contradictions. It’ll be fun. And then it will be your turn.

I’m a lazy… activist.

I smoke cigarettes after yoga. (Only sometimes!)

I teach reasoning skills to high school students. My psychic supports this.

I am the straight girl co-founder of a queer rights/ feminist/ group for equality, but I have a pretty singular attraction to rich white men whose debonair style and nice hair conceal an undercurrent of (blech) misogyny.

You felt the need to bring me down because sometimes too much joy is just too much and I still love your stupid face.

Enough about that, I’m reading Nietzche and a self-help book called The Happiness Makeover at the same time – it’s a race!

I’m the wisest person I know and also the most naive, the brightest and the dullest, so beautiful sweet and such a cold-ass bitch. Depends on which superlative you seek.

All we need is balance, balance, balance, I battle cry on my turbo dive directly into the deeeeeep end. Oh, the deep end, my bitter friend.

If I had a resume of ailments I’ve diagnosed myself with it would include, but not limited to: urgently exploding appendicitis, recurring anorexia and simultaneously a propensity for obesity, bipolar disorder, high-functioning autism, gluten allergies, a thyroid imbalance, schizophrenia, paranoia, clinical depression, neuroticism and hypochondriacism. Those last two are probably correct.

I lament that in all that, I’m not a little more OCD. My room would probably be cleaner.

I’m a messy perfectionist. An embracing critic.

I will cry with my whole body, quietly but deep breathingly, sometimes at things happening on television. And I will laugh until I shake, until tears squirt out of my eyes and I grab onto someone just to remember where I am, sometimes because of things happening on the television. Oh wait, laughing and crying ain’t a contradiction – but ask my ex-manfriends and they’ll tell you it is.

They just get angry. Human evolutionary psychology is some kind of crackpot joke in itself, but that’s altogether another story.

Paradoxes can get tiring, but what other kinds of truths have we got? I’m no painter but I’d like to paint a pair of docks shackled to each other. Somewhere deeply inland. With a tagline that reads, “Enough metanarratives already!”

Anyway. I’m a writer who usually prefers a meaty conversation to flashy devices.

All I want to do is leave my ego at the door and help people genuinely, authentically, the way my soul begs of me to do in the ways that I know how. I want to reach people who think they don’t deserve to be reached. I want to pull them out of the muck and laugh about how funny it is that once you thought that’s where you belonged. But then I doubt myself and become one of those people who needs some rope myself. Stuck in the muck. And maybe that’s why I do the pulling. Plus, that’s where most of the funny weird things are born. What would I do without those swampy friends?

I think there are too many people on the planet and too many dumb words already been said, but I want to nurse my own children eventually, and see my name in print again and again and again.

I love to backpack – up and down streams, boots soaking wet and tired and sore. The best meal of my life occurred out in the foothills – tuna fish on crackers. But I will binge on five star hotels that serve you oysters with lemon wrapped in meshy plastic whenever I can, oh honey, take me down to never never land.

I will compost my veggies like a mountain hermit and wipe worm poop all over my pants, then don an evening sparkle dress and throw cocktails down my throat like I’m a hotshot on some Real World trash.

I strive to live richly, richly, richly poor!  But I’d also kind of like regular sushi lunches and new things someday, maybe, finally.

My city friends think I’m a well-adjusted hippie. My hippie friends wonder how the city doesn’t kill me.

I have social anxiety so bad sometimes I don’t leave my house for days. But when you meet me at a party, I will radiate. It won’t be fake. It’s in me.

I want to express in wordy colors all my blah blah, sing out on the walls all my yeah yeah, spin and dance around all my hee hee, and also guard it up, not for the world to see. How much energy for you and how much love for me?

I’m an overgiver who doesn’t quite know yet how to fully receive.

“For such a colorful personality, you sure wear a lot of black.” Has been said about me.

I’d like to not care what you think of me. I’d like to stop saying me, me, me. I’d also like to stop this rhyming spree. But what other vehicle do I have to express what funny weird backward beauties I and you and everyone are, all the time, concurrently?

I want more than anything to feel life coursing through my body full and rich and light and true. But I am attached to the darkness like a shadow I can’t shake. I’m afraid if I shook it, I’d be floating, and floating and floating, but somewhere out there all alone. No safety rope. Misery loves company and maybe there’s another way to be, but I need dark company; it’s dangerous to be so light.

You can absolutely be too free. But rebirth is your right. As many times as you want it. And integration is the key. You can have your own language and speak another tongue, too. You just have to want to.

I’m telling myself, you can fall for the stars and still live a little large.

You can drown science in formulas, then close your eyes and rocket off to Jupiter.

You can wear your contradictions like a robe entitling you to be whatever you feel today. Right now.

And hey, news flash, you there swimming in TV ads and fake boob pornos and consciousness raising questions and comparisons with your peers, and all your wonderful, titillating confusion: you don’t have to be perfect. That’d be nonsense. And actually really boring. But you do have to try. To figure it out. You will have to work to let the old goo morph into newness or else what is it worth?

You can be as genuine as you are pretending and I know you’re good at pretending. Just take the real stuff, take the other stuff, take the inner and the outer stuff, take the messy stuff, and the gorgeous stuff, mix them all together and shake.

Look at me. Identity crisis ice cream sundae.

At least I’ve made hesitant friends with my shadow side – I’ve named her Rikoklyn; she’s snide and has mean teeth. Sometimes I like her. Just for something different. Capiche?

So it’s pretty much guaranteed – your multiple heads with all their silly hats will fight and fight and fight. But don’t fight the fight. There is no should, no supposed to be. Just you, some different outfits, and how every different day you choose to be.

So that’s it. How I let Hegel dialecticize me toward every new resounding, explosive synthesis. How every idea gives rise to its opposite, and something new is born. How you can learn to train yourself to let things die when they need to die. It’s simple but hard. And sometimes it takes a while before the birth. Survival is a spiral, adaptation on a level you can see. Slowly winding forward.


The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function. -F. Scott Fitzgerald


40 thoughts on “Hail to Hegel’s Dialectical Explosive Synthesis

  1. This is a good list of contradictions. Your list, of course. It is unlikely that it is different from the others. This is a big secret, but I’ll try to open it – all have exactly the same. Well, for the most part.
    And yes, Heil Hegel, of course.

  2. If Hegel does not help, living a week without soft toilet paper usually straightens out the survival spiral, removing the need for self-help books along the way. A week away from the city is a cure of immesurable potency )

    • Oh yeah, I definitely agree. I’m always trying to get out of the city. I have about a 4 month limit, where after that I start to get a little itchy. It’s been about 6 months now…. and I am ITCHY!!!

      • Don’t scratch it by looking at photos of the countryside. Just get out there ) I’m writing a post about a landscape with a road right now – and that landscape is just about the kind of itch you feel. Will be out in a day or two, hope you like it )

  3. NICE! I wish there were a more fitting word to denote agreement and illumination and appreciation and tickled humour and a big “Yay!” But there is only this: “Nice!” 🙂 Love it.

  4. Everyone is a conglomeration of emotions and thoughts. Whoever you think you are right now may not be the same five minutes from now. The trick is to figure out how to be authentic in each moment while finding a way to survive. You have to live with dichotomies to do this. Our memories create the myth of consistency and continuity while we flounder around trying to connect to the world. I love the way you embrace your inconsistencies. If only more people could be as flexible the world would run much more smoothly.

  5. I think this is brilliant! The writing has great cadence (or maybe meter is a better word), interesting observations and a unifying underlying scheme that can’t be stated too often. So I guess, not just brilliant, but a brilliant bit of writing.

    Nicely done. Thanks for sharing this piece.

  6. Uh huh, si. I do capiche.
    Balance is that moment of poise just before the dive into the deep end…which by the way is a lot wiser than a leap into the shallow.

  7. Wow- this may be the best summary of Hegel I have yet to find and hits shockingly close to my own personality… I fear I might be caught in my own Hegelian dialectic. Meh. Either way, I think I’ll pass this along to my students when they ask me to explain dialectics.

  8. This line resonated with me so deeply, you cannot imagine…or maybe you can: “I have social anxiety so bad sometimes I don’t leave my house for days. But when you meet me at a party, I will radiate. It won’t be fake. It’s in me.”

    • I didn’t plan to post this on 12/12/12, that just happened to be when it happened. However, I had been doing some intentional energy work the week before, so…. who knows

  9. Reblogged this on nojatuolifilosofikirot and commented:
    Jotkut elää samanlaisina koko elämänsä. Jotkut taas muuttuu jatkuvasti. Vaikka kaikki muutos ei tietenkään kulje Hegelin Maailmanhengen tietä, se on kuitenkin mielenkiintoinen tapa muuttua, mistä johtuen haluan kysyä: Kuinka paljon tämä muistuttaa omaa polkuasi tähän asti?

    Ehkä nojatuolifilosofikin on joskus voinut toimia sen kummemmin ajattelematta. Sitten äärimmileen venytetty kirjaviisaus on houkutellut pois käytännön äärellä, mikä tuokin minut pointtiin: Älä anna rajoittuneen käytännön kokemuksen estää hankkimasta lisää.

  10. Is this an indirect exhibition of the synthesis of diametrically opposed emotions, parading as thesis and anti-thesis?In my mind there’s no final synthesis, because there’s no real dichotomies. The only TRUE hypocrite there is, is one who sells out the human race as evil, in order to elevate one’s self as righteous. It’s full circle: I’m human, but I’m not human, you’re human too, but I’m better than you.

  11. Pingback: Academic Literary Notationals « Rosetteismyname's Blog

  12. Pingback: Hail to Hegel’s Dialectical Explosive Synthesis | valores, principios, defectos y vicios humanos: el autoconocimiento no es el nirvana!

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