I’m watching one of my favorite movies, Equilibrium, and having a moment of clarity. It always fascinates me how a movie, song, or TV show that I have seen dozens of times still can pop up and speak right to my current situation. Art imitates life and life is influenced by art, I guess.
In this movie, the main character played by Christian Bale is tasked with enforcing laws against emotion. Art, music, love and anything that evokes feelings have been outlawed in this fascist dystopia. John Preston (Bale’s character) has been suppressing his emotions as required by law, but after a long turn of events, he starts feeling stuff again and seeks to upend the dictatorship that outlawed emotion.
Part of the point of the movie is that emotions can get out of control and be destructive. But the movie also shows that emotions are a part of the natural human experience. Equilibrium speaks to the balance needed to live a full life; it is important to feel all emotions fully but to also not let them cloud your judgement.
Right now, I feel like my emotions are controlling me, instead of the other way around. I know feelings will pass, but right now I am embarrassed that I have continued to trust people who seem incapable of telling the truth. I am heartbroken from loving people who can’t love me in return (or worse…who have actively betrayed me). I’m exhausted from forgiving people who have never apologized. I’m tired of giving people second chances when they refuse to change their harmful behavior. I am tired of giving people the benefit of the doubt. Most of all, I am enraged at myself because I know better but somehow can’t shake away these ridiculous behaviors. I let certain things happen, although my intuition told me to walk away or do things differently. I know I will do better, I know I can do better, but right now it all just sucks.
I hate feeling conflicting emotions and I struggle with reconciling my own contradictions. This blog is only being read by a handful of people, but I’m fine with that because these emotions and words have to be expelled from my soul or else they will consume me. This whole project is all about me finding my purpose and learning to live for myself and love myself unconditionally. It’s a process, and I hope I don’t have to repeat these lessons anymore.
Back to the movie though, I feel like my emotions are about to flatline…and if you’ve seen the movie….you know what happens next. I am kind, loving, generous and honest…..but on the other side of this flatline, I don’t know who I’ll be. Maybe I need to cut down every enemy and erase all the false narratives that keep me tied to destructive patterns, just like John took down all the Clerics that policed emotion. Or maybe I could dismantle the “Father” system, that is society’s stranglehold on who I’m expected to be and how I’m expected to “succeed”.
Either way it goes, by “gun kata” or by personal revolution, on the other side of this flatline, my heart will be reset and maybe I will be free. My rage isn’t going to be able to stay quiet for much longer.