tags: antithesis published on:
Stigma acts as an identifier for people for knowing things that they should not know. And where is the boundary, where is the line that demarcates knowledge in these terms? That line will never be found because it has not been drawn. Drawing is a wilful act that needs to be done with utmost attention to detail. All humans were created only to be able to draw a certain number of lines and after that their minds and their ability to think straight jumbles up, gets warped and forever only thinks in terms of closure. They strive to only complete drawings, even the ones which have become impossible to be deciphered because of their inherent chaos. While completing drawings, they do not think twice about the communicative role of their pen touching paper. They do not try to say anything, they just make sure that there is nothing incomplete, no open loop capturing their life and rendering it benign.
When they do this, when they stop drawing, stigma develops. So stigma develops after the ability to draw a line clearly demarcating itself from other characteristic descriptors. This is the void that is the source of all mystery. The ability to insulate the idea of oneself from all possible discussions. But still these ideas, these characteristics become fodder for social interactions and culture, they treat them as clear categories which are somewhere defined in absolute terms. The stigma becomes only a mode to propel oneself towards absolution from responsibility and accountability. If niceness is not going to be imposed on us, if social propriety is not going to be a constraint, we can do anything. And that is what we want. But we have to deal with the additional burden of stigma on our shoulders and manage to grind it away to become a dull stub that nobody points to but always remember. And that absurdity we live with.
When we meet strangers, they know nothing about us but they know about our stigma. Stigma has a mystique, which by. It's very association allows the tagging of multiple stories to our name, it is like a license for free association, free yarn-spinning, fantasy. The stigma-tainted are like storybook demons, they manage to be as bad as they need to be, they have to offer what the plot demands.
Inside us, in our minds, there is sometimes a dialog that has us think of ourselves in dismissive terms. But it never works, the flip side of stigma is shamelessness. We have no personal identification with our stigma, we wear it on our sleeve and when we want to wish it away, everything becomes just a bit more blurred. This shamelessness dismisses stigma as another speck of idle dust. Nothing is able puncture our steam. Nothing is able to tire us. We operate as automatic streams, insulated from all elements of noise.
Stigma questions our absolute hold over the flux in our minds. It suggests that external perspectives of our self matter when they don't. Stigma carry the world in which it is defined. Systems of social norms, conventions are often the objects of carriage but familial codes, honour and standards which we hold ourselves against might equally well be carried by these stigma. But we hold ourselves against nothing and we do not accept any messages that carry potent missiles of stigma as we do not understand the systems that define it. We are bestowed stigma freely by the world on its own accord but we do not accept it. This creates noise in the way we read ourselves and the way others read us. But this dissonance is filtered by us by a simple refusal to engage with any entities that do not match us in our self-perception. If you have a different perspective of us than we ourselves do, we have nothing to talk about.
Stigma has a successful run with porous personas which do not have a robustness and stability. But these personas and their noisy, volatile passage through this world as it is vulnerable to a lethal incident at any time. Only sufficiently insulated people get the luxury of eventually perishing with time, wearing out their bones and spirit slowly on the grindstone of time.
Stigma could have been the gifts we assigned to the world. Stigma could have been the thorny path that we led casual visitors into our world down on. It could have been the binary through which we channeled our angst for the world. Instead of letting the world find its way of weeding itself out of the dark corners of the maze of our world, we unnecessarily do the same for it instead. Stigma could have been the core of the suffering we imposed on the world, it is just a missed opportunity instead.