Thursday, July 21, 2011
Dumb and Dumber
Did any one else hear the program on revenge on the CBC radio program Strange Animal?. It was fascinating because it took a scientific look at vengeance, which seems so programmed into human existence.
One researcher said that his studies of the brain show that people get a "rush" from imagining revenge. But they don't get the same satisfaction from actually exacting revenge. Makes sense to me. I have imagined revenge in everything from the scathing riposte well after the nasty comment was made to me, to much darker thoughts that I will not share because they could put me out of a job. Maybe this "revenge rush" explains why the supposedly Christian nation to our south has been embroiled in a costly boondoggle in the Middle East for the past decade without much to show for it.
A lot of people consider Jesus' encouragement to "turn the other cheek" to be pretty dumb. I talk to people all the time who figure it's fine for Jesus to say so, but he obviously doesn't know their ex, their boss, their sibling. But maybe if "turn the other cheek" is dumb, revenge is dumber.