Take a Walk on the Dark Side

Posted: June 10, 2013 in Philosophy, Random Observations


One of my favorite shows to watch is Lost.  My relationship with the show has become disenchanted somewhat (perhaps to the point of a loveless marriage), but the first season really spoke to me.  One aspect that I really like about the show, is how these survivors of a plane crash all had their lives previous to the crash, but once they are trapped on this island with each other, they can choose to lead any kind of life they want.  Characters are challenged to overcome the ghosts from their prior lives and often transcend their fears and weaknesses. 

            Aside from the theme of redemption, I think it is exceptional that the show illustrates the potential for a broad range of human behavior. Through all of the situations these survivors are put into, heroes become villains, villains become heroes, and so forth.  The audience gets a glimpse into the sorted affairs of these characters’ past lives and gets to see exactly where they’ve come from and how much the plane crash has changed them for better or worse.

            The older I get and the more of life that I experience, I realize that I too am capable of behaviors that I might deem unsavory even by the standards of my own moral compass.  Unscrupulous deeds that I would normally denounce, I am finding that I have the tendencies for, or at least find myself on the threshold of choices that test my ethics to the very core.   

Are the values that I have integrated into my life constantly up for revision, or is life such a complex dance that I must engage in the dance to discern what I believe in?

            If Lost has illustrated anything to me, it has shown me that anyone is capable of pretty much anything given the right circumstances, and this includes me.  No matter how noble I would like to think of myself, no matter how self-righteous I may believe I am, I must admit to myself that I too am capable of much destruction if the right (or wrong) circumstances are present.  I would like to say that I am above such temptation, but if I am really honest with myself, I find that there is more grey in the world than black or white.

            Fortunately, I am not a victim to indiscretion; there is always a choice.  Even in the throes of deepest iniquity, I must decide whether I will give in to my lower impulses, or remain an agent of that which is virtuous and sanguine.  The crazy thing is that the temptation never really goes away, nor does the testing of one‘s beliefs.  By the simple act of existence, a belief system must be tested in the arena of life to validate it.

            The question is: Will I have the capacity to transform my failures into successes?

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