Sunday, November 25, 2012

On Commo

Knowing that words can complicate 
the wise keep their thoughts to themselves 
--Tao Te Ching, Verse 5

Just a quick Sunday Homily/ Out on the OP-LP entry: On Commo

If you are one of those rare individuals fortunate enough to enjoy the sort of relationship in which a smile and a tilt of the head is enough to convey all, mazel tov on the sublimity with which you are blessed.  For the rest of us, understanding can be a hard slog.

An odd confluence occurred following my reading of two disparate stories: The Oprah of Afghanistan and Director Sam Peckinpah's defense of the extreme violence in his film, Straw Dogs (1971).

Mozhdah Jamalzadah is a young Afghan-Canadian woman who hosts a talk-show in Afghanistan covering such taboo topics as divorce and spousal abuse.  She was interviewed in the British press last year and said she is proud that a few Afghan women have told her things like their husbands no longer beat them or their children after having viewed her program.  She feels she can make if a difference "If I can stay alive."

Jamalzadah's life has been threatened, and she lives under extreme protection.  She is a privileged women who chooses to live like this in the hope of bringing the good news of dialog and some respect to her Afghan sisters.

In typical Peckinpah fashion, Straw Dogs ends in an orgy of violence, but he explains that to him, it was not an endorsement of violence, but rather a purge of obsessions with violence resulting from the human inability to communicate.  He feels that David (Dustin Hoffman), the long-suffering and cuckolded husband, is actually the story's true villain.  He says he "deliberately, yet subconsciously, provoked the violence", and that "his concluding homicidal rampage is his true self."

There is something to be said for the destructive manifestation of repression and passive aggression.  Communication is necessary, especially in fraught situations.  Violence is the probable outcome of the suppressed imperative to speak and to be heard and understood.

Would you like to share any thoughts on commo -- how did you reach clarity or resolution, and when did withholding commo cause a problem.  How was it resolved?

We receive so many conflicted messages regarding commo, and so much today is simply inane Twittering.  "Silence is golden"; "None are so wise as he who does not speak".

What do you say?

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