Lestat Lesson #2
“It’s an awful truth that suffering can deepen us, give a greater luster to our colors, a richer resonance to our words. That is, if it doesn’t destroy us, if it doesn’t burn away the optimism and the spirit, the capacity for visions, the respect for simple yet indispensible things.”
Being unhappy makes us well-rounded
Have you ever met anybody who is constantly perky and cheerful?
Don’t you hate people like that? Do you know why we hate people like that?
It’s not because we’re anti-social manic depressives who are jealous of somebody else’s ability to consistently see the best in everything.
We hate people who are always happy because they are dull, lifeless, flat, and one-dimensional human beings.
If you talk to somebody who is always chirpy and upbeat, it gets really boring after awhile because they have nothing interesting to say.
It’s like you’re only seeing one side of the coin if you only see the best in everything.
You’re also putting yourself at a horrible disadvantage because if you don’t consider the bad and the good, you’ll wind up getting blindsided.
Life isn’t bad if we’re suffering, it’s just life.
Suffering is a part of life and to deny that part of us would be cheating us out of the full experience that comes with being alive.
I know for me personally, suffering brings a richer resonance to my words because when I’m upset I use writing as a cathartic experience, one that can help me work through all the dismal feelings.
Writing while we’re suffering can help us produce our best work perhaps because it’s only then that we truly write what we feel in our hearts.
When we’re really happy we don’t want to waste time writing and such, we merely want to live in the moment and soak in the good vibes while they last.
Whereas being happy all the time might put us at a disadvantage for when the bad times arrive, being depressed all the time will eventually deprive us of the faculties that enable us to enjoy the better parts of life.
Our senses will become dull without use and pretty soon we’ll forget how to enjoy anything.
The crux of Lestat’s statement is this:
Suffering deepens us because it puts things into perspective; the bright spots become that much brighter when we have something particularly dark to compare them with.
Although suffering enables us to see the world for everything within it, we cannot afford to become too caught up in it because it will eventually burn away our ability to enjoy ourselves.
Constant sadness is extremely tempting because it gives us something to look forward to; if things are always so awful, they’ve got to get better sometime, right? The best perspective to adopt is one that lies in the middle, that way, we can clearly see what is on either side of us.
For further information on this topic, I suggest listening to the Toad the Wet Sprocket song “Throw It All Away”, on the Coil album. That song is a catharsis in and of itself.