Dark Energy: The Ancient Glamour of Cruelty


https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/ancient/

What could be more ancient, in the world’s Oral Tradition, than good versus evil, deity versus demon – and, once the famous Holy books arrived, God versus Lucifer, the ultimate Fallen Angel?

Is our fascination with life’s Dark Angels equally ancient? Has the pull towards the dark and dangerous been a part of the human psyche since proto-humanity slithered onto dry land?

Attraction, as a biological imperative, is certainly extremely ancient. Dark and Light. They arrived before us. They make up our world.

Mills and Boon abound in it. ‘Wuthering Heights’ both exalts and exemplifies it with haunting and poetic, and raw, beauty. I refer here to the dark side of attraction.

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I have spent much time this past week thinking, and writing, about the effects of abuse upon the behaviour – and the kind of emotional bombs it can leave in its wake, ready to go off at any trigger moment.

Today, I want to shift this on a little by examining another of abuse’s side-effects: The types of people the damaged are, all too often, pulled towards and attracted by.

I will start by stating something many may disagree with: Dark energy is both glamorous and seductive. An apparently wounded soul can bring out our need to nurture, to save. Dominant individuals are capable of stirring the submissive side many of us hide, or are not even aware of.

But it is more than that. Those imbued with inner darkness can be incredibly charismatic. They can seem larger than life, more passionate, more vibrant. They, like Cathy and Heathcliff, seem to live outside the fabric of society and, symbolised so well in Emily Bronte’s novel, to run wild and, to some extent, free upon the moors and crags and liminal places of the world and the mind. Their company can seem like a drug.

Rebels, often without a cause (other than themselves), these people can look as if they are putting two fingers up at the laws which govern society. Like Jack Merridew, in ‘Lord of the Flies’, their strongly vibrating inner attitude is, ‘Bollocks to the rules!’

We thrill to the enactment of this strange energy on the screen. We find villains sexier than heroes. Kindness often seems rather dull. Cruelty enlivens. We chase after passion rather than security. We are, in a word, englamoured by darkness – and convince ourselves that light is shining through the cracks.

I can say, and see, now that the vast majority of people I befriended as a child and adolescent contained at least a smidgen of this black and fascinating aura, blending breath-taking nastiness with dollops of honeyed sweetness so cleverly that I never knew where I stood. I felt as if I stood in a deep purple/black flowering of a life force far more powerful than any I had felt before.

These people were, almost without exception, broken vessels, the glassy edges glittering and dripping with the shed blood of their acolytes. Their egocentric natures, however, could appear like the most refreshing honesty and spontaneity. Their anger, volcanic and uncontrollable, appeared romantic and blasting in its reach. Other people, like the Lintons in Bronte’s book, seemed pale and timid and uninteresting in comparison. ‘Nice’ was sneered at as boring. Selflessness was seen as weakness. Generosity as manipulation.

Having read thus far, you may well assume that I am writing about early boyfriends. I am not: My journey with male/female relationships did not start until I was nineteen.

I am writing about my experience of the Catherine Earnshaws of this world. They could rouse the deepest pity and love and protectiveness in my heart: When, metaphorically, they sobbed outside the casement window, and their little white hands could be seen trying to gain entry, I saw only the hurt and needy child – and not the damage (to themselves, to others) which had caused them to linger outside in the first place.

Like Emily Bronte, I was drawn to their wildly romantic and crazy behaviour, their ability to mesh souls (or claim they could) with those who followed in their treacherous footsteps. Confusing gigantic ego with vast personality, I was enraptured.

Their dark light (for there is such a thing) illuminated my world with the macabre and mesmerising beauty and horror of a Salvador Dali painting. Dark Angels they may have been but, to me, they were angels nonetheless. They had the Lucifer strain – and he was a Bearer of Light, his name also meaning Morning Star.

Flawed geniuses. Broken chalices. Damaged souls. Few things in life are more fascinating to the abused. We see in their cracks and blood and wounds an echo of our own. Our empathy and compassion, stirred to its depths, reaches out in desperate ecstasy to make contact, to make that all-important healing difference to these suffering souls. We thrill to their every halting confidence. We excuse their every bout of cruelty. We are in love with their darkness.

We seek them here. We seek them there. And, of course, they seek us too. It is the dread symbiosis of pain and fear and need.

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Like Lucifer, these people have chosen to fall – and are leading a rebellion against the Creator, against the Light. But, they have their place. They come into our lives for a purpose. They are our moments of dark temptation, of soul honing and spiritual growth. They often teach us who we really are beneath the artifice.

Their darkness is the necessary other side of light’s essential polarity. Through the sieve of their inner fractures, we can catch deep truths.

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18 thoughts on “Dark Energy: The Ancient Glamour of Cruelty

    1. Interesting point of view – and I get what you are saying: Great metaphor. However, I would maintain that everyone has, at the very least, a latent darkness, or a propensity for same. By this, I don’t mean evil; I mean the effect of one of life’s polarities, more akin to night and day. Our light shines because of its opposite within our souls. xxx

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  1. Julie

    “They often teach us who we really are” .
    Yes, it is undoubtedly their purpose and as such they become our spiritual teachers. But still, I do find it horribly difficult having to renounce the concept of innocence in order to give pain some meaning…
    The innocence of a child, full of love and hope, the innocence of an adult even, full of passion and generosity, all of it being destroyed… trampled… poisoned so that pain can take their place and reveal its secret… What a fucking price! What a horrendous sacrifice! What a monstrous waste! Waste of love, trust, creativity and life… Who can not cry at this tragic state of affair?

    As for the abusers, they create an ever vaster emotional emptiness for themselves, a black hole devoid of love and trust… How will they fill their cold and hollow world when they run out of power? Their lost victims will then become spiritual messengers of missed opportunities…

    Karma has no feelings. It is a balance sheet.

    P.S: your posts being reblogged should provide you with a financial reward….

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    1. The damage abusers inflict is huge – but I hold on to the belief that it does not have to destroy the child (or adult). It leaves visible scars. It erodes trust. It chips away at innocence. But we are more than our trust and innocence and passion. There is a part of us, call it the soul, which registers abuse and then, at some point, sends the vessel and the mind out into the world to make good; to use the pain creatively; to heal. I fear that the true waste lies within those poor souls who cannot, for very good reasons, bear to face what has happened: Their potential is then crippled, tragically so. Totally agree with your comments on abusers: They will, indeed, run out of power in the end – and will face a very rude awakening. xxx

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      1. Julie

        Humm…
        The soul… Yes, it can be and must be free from its host if it is to transcend it.
        But often the battle for its survival isn’t an easy one. Mental health proves it. Schizophrenia demonstrates it.
        Be grateful you haven’t been forced by life to fight and lose the battle…

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        1. The battle for survival is hellish hard. My posts on here represent the tiniest chunk of ice, with the rest of the iceberg submerged below the surface of a public blog site. I have been forced by life to confront the enemy (in all its diverse forms). I think we put too much store by winning and/or losing. I say that because any troubling period in our lives is, to continue the military metaphor, a series of skirmishes rather than one damned great nuclear conflict which will cost the earth. Some we triumph in; others we do not. After some, we go away and lick our wounds and rethink our strategies. I worry about the way military images are used for serious illness, cancer for example, with the implication being that, if you do not survive, you have, in some odd way, failed to fight hard enough. Absolute load of bollocks in my opinion! xxx

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          1. Julie

            No doubt that the military vocabulary used around our fight for survival, be it physical or mental, is too often overdone. But a battle it remains….
            I very much agree with you about the ‘winner-looser’ dichotomy being totally wrong. What is important is the meaning or lack of it we experience in life and our battles for emotional or mental survival is the terrain on which it must be fought. Religion and rituals help find meaning. It is a painful search though… Seemingly endless.
            And I completely get your analogy with the iceberg….

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  2. Very interesting subject.

    “Dark energy is both glamorous and seductive. ”

    I don’t disagree at all, and think many others feel the same way. There is a reason for it. It’s worth spending a moment reflecting why it is seductive. Dark or whatever, ‘dark’ in the end it is a matter of definition.
    How you react is probably to a big part unconscious, derived from the childhood. It’s worth going back to that-those experiences that trigger certain reactions, if you are interested in finding out why. That’s my humble opinion.

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  3. Dark light. Had a torch that only emitted in that fell wavelength. I could use it to find lost and vulnerable souls floundering in the stygian depths of their hapless lives. I could take this object of pitiless black and expose new victims for my planned dred army of mindless followers. Women weep! For I will hunt you with darkening clouds. Men despair! For my torch of blinding starless night will enslave all that you are or ever could be.
    (Then would you believe it, found I had the batteries reversed. Now it lights the way to the outside loo just nicely. Oh well being nice is more Kevin Costner than Alan Rickman. …and he gets maid Marion).

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  4. I too, have been seduced by such a person, but far from the strong personality they presented, underneath the glamour they were in a worse state than I. Something I discovered far too late, after the bonds of duty and responsibility were forged.
    I wish I knew why we are drawn like a magnet to these people. Even now, I look twice at the people I admire and wonder, knowing I shall recede into old age a very solitary person.

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    1. I think the first step lies in recognising that we ARE drawn to the buggers! Knowledge is power to a certain extent – and, once we realise that we have a tendency to become englamoured, we can set up inner protection. Not easy, though, because the habit of responding is very strong. xxx

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  5. Oh yes, so very true. The Dark Side is more than depicted in Star Wars, and I don’t mean to be trivial. As a teenager, ‘Bad Lads’ were always more popular with the girls, and anyone who didn’t feel attracted to them was referred to as a Goody Two Shoes.
    Such was I, a late developer who was timid in the company of the opposite sex, rather crossing the road than walking on the same side.
    My first marriage was a mistake, but a mismatch, not abuse.
    My second partner suckered me in hook, line and sinker, using his two young children as a lure to fill a hole in my heart, hiding his true self and his drinking until I was well established and it wasn’t easy to go back. Although he wasn’t physically abusive, the mental and emotional scars will always be with me, but are no longer part of the person I am, if that makes any sense.
    I think we all have a darker side lurking in our personality, it’s just a question of do we nurture it, or accept it as part of us but don’t let it control us.

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    1. Totally agree: We all do, indeed, have both dark and light within our complex characters, and both have their place, for we would be unbalanced without one or the other. I think the key lies in the manipulation of others through that power – and the deliberate refusal to acknowledge what one is doing. In this post, I was actually focusing on girls and women, but my comments are equally true of boys and men. xxx

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