Friday, February 09, 2007

Is suffering relative?

Is it possible that I've "suffered" enough? Has the universe decided to decrease the tension on the rack a notch or two for now? Too soon to say amigos, but keep your fingers crossed will you?

I flinch as I write this, look at me sawing away at the violin strings of my own privileged hardship... Especially having just seen the offensively-slick Blood Diamond, and knowing what those child soldiers in Sierra Leone and Rwanda went through (and still are to some extent in smaller numbers). How dare I!

I waiver on what I call The Transitive Proportion of Suffering Capacity. Is a hangnail in Beverly Hills proportionately equal to having your arms cut off in Africa? Before you lick the envelope on your letter bombs, what I'm asking is this: is the intensity of an individual's suffering relative to their life experience? Is suffering relative or is suffering more of a fixed scale, the extremes of which only a few humans will ever get to know? There are convincing arguments in both directions.

("Stickes" photo of Rwandan war child w. makeshift stitches by Neil Abramson)


Blogger Robert Daoust said...

Your post is quoted in my blog today.

7:03 PM  
Blogger Robert Daoust said...

Excuse me. I should have said your post is quoted in my blog at

7:49 PM  

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