An Excellent Reason Not To Have Enemies


A friend (thanks Roxanne!) reminded me of this excellent quote by Susan Griffin:

“I can be angry.
I can hate.
I can rage.
But the moment I have defined another being as my enemy,
I lose part of myself: the complexity and subtlety of my vision.

I begin to exist in a closed system.
When anything goes wrong, I blame my enemy.
If I wake troubled, my enemy has led me to this feeling.
If I cannot sleep, it is because of my enemy.

Slowly all the power in my life begins to be located outside,
and my whole being is defined in relation to this outside force,
which becomes daily more monstrous, more evil,
more laden with all the qualities in myself
I no longer wish to own.

The quality of my thought then is diminished.
My imagination grows small.
My self seems meagre.
For my enemy has stolen all of these.”

(from “The Way of All Ideology”, by Susan Griffin, in: Feminist Theory: A Critique of Ideology, 1982, ed. by N.O. Keohane, M.Rosaldo and B.Gelpi, pp. 273-292)

One comment on “An Excellent Reason Not To Have Enemies

  1. I’m my own worst enemy. Time to quell the fight.

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