Self-inflicted Torment

One thing that has always amazed me is how people become unhinged over the smallest of things, and then obsess over them. I’m not talking about something making one angry so that they feel the need to vent, after which they move on. No, I’m talking about those people who on purpose watch, listen to, or read things they know will make them angry.

For example, someone will watch the news and will get angry at what they see. Rather than turn it off or change the channel, this person will keep the news on and get angrier and angrier. Then, they’ll go to blogs or online news sites and the fires of rage keep brewing. Why do this?

For me, I recall back years ago in anime fandom dealing with someone named Blade. He had a knack for saying things to make people mad and boy did he ever, myself included. Initially, I felt compelled to respond to this guy, but after a few times, I realized that this was nuts on my part. Let him say what he wanted. No one was forcing me to read his posts, so why would I read anything that I knew was just going to piss me off?

Then there was ELL. He is someone I knew online via the anime fandom and he is an elitist in that anyone who disagrees with him will take massive abuse for their ignorance. No one wants to take abuse, so people would get angry with him for his sitting in the seat of the scornful and talking down to them. While there was no reason for him to be so crude and rude, the thing to do was to get up and walk away if his abuse made you angry. After all, it wasn’t like he was going to follow you around from board to board to continue to heap abuse on you.

Of course there are psychopaths who claim to hate something so much, and yet they somehow seem to read every bit of information that is out their on whatever it is they hate. Why? The real sad part is that this thing they hate could be a TV show, say the current Battlestar Galactica. The become so obsessed over how much it sucks compared to the original 70’s series in their mind that they spend hours going to all the BSG sites and boards. They troll behind a proxy (to hide their IP) and blast away on a board or blog comment section to express their rage. The more they do it, the more they keep the fires burning within them. Is that any way to live?

I admit I waste a lot of time online, but I can’t imagine spending that time looking for things on purpose to piss me off. In some ways I feel sorry for these people who’s self-worth is so low, they have nothing else to lift them up (and even then, its not good enough). Then I remind myself that they do this to themselves. It would be so easy to avoid topics or people who anger you (because no one is making you read those things, or listen to them, or watch them) and thus improve your quality of life. But then the psychopath isn’t thinking too clearly, so caught up in themselves and their feelings, they can’t see the forest for the trees. May God have mercy on them.

Reader Comments

  1. Great insight! In the lighter cases, which I believe your observation concentrates on, the incidence is isolated and more of a nuisance than of a permanent or incessant problem; in other words, typically there is something one may do to solve the case or a function one may put in place to minimize its occurrence through some way of moderation perhaps.

    In more difficult cases, your observation, like a keen razor, seems to identify a certain aspect of being human which is a consequence of emotion, and it is from this attachment that these persons, thus with a clouded mind and being consumed in either wishful thinking or ignorant of sound thinking, act so irrationally as to be in denial of their own capacity to err. As time comes to pass and authority be on their side, these persons with emotion-driven prejudice may befriend one another to suppress or alienate others who differ from their views. This is what I find to be the most serious of cases of self-inflicted torment: such a bond between like, tormented persons forces others into exile; therefore, they who are already tormented torment others. An example of this is the presumptuous canon crusade against the questioning non-canon sect; there is no room for other cacti in the desert made of ostentatious cacti. ^_^””

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