In my journey of learning, and processing … working with folks, I like to flip things over to look at them from the other side.
With bullying … I mentioned in the last post that, in 2012, there were 1800 + books published on bullying. This means that there has been a whole lot of research going on, about bullying, and … a great deal energy spent on communicating ideas / concepts / data that is different from how others have communicated the data about bullying.
Instead of gravitating toward the micro/analytical/detailed psychological aspects of bullying, I’d like to consider some basics about bullying … in a categorical manner. It is so common in our day and time to get away from the basics. There is a kind of appetite Americans have for … the sophisticated … the over-analyzed … the “new”.
A man from the past by the name of Solomon wrote about wisdom … and he was considered my many at that time to be a wise man. Solomon, many believe, wrote that there is nothing really new … it’s all been said before.
In my experience of working with a vibrant cross section of folks over the last fifteen years, I have come to believe a few ideas about bullying: only a few items. I would be honored and privileged to receive feedback / input, whether you agree with me or not.
1) Insecurity … One of the goals of the bully is sabotage one’s “security”; or, one might say that a bully wants to wreak havoc on one’s safety. (Question – Where does a man find his security?)
2) Power … One theory of bullying is to take back power that the bully once lost, to someone else (who stole it from him) … What seems ironic (or is it paradoxical?) that the bully keeps trying to take his power back, over and over, and it is never enough … Thus, the bullying comes out of the bully’s loss of power at some time in their life. (Question: What is powerful … from a redemptive, honorable, perspective?)
3) Identity … A bully wants to make a name for himself, or herself … On some level, don’t most people? Some people do NOT want to make a name for themselves … They want to remain hidden … And that dynamic of “hiddeness” connects with the bullying category, in different ways. (Like my question with #1, where does a man find his identity? And in the realm of hiddeness, is one running from identity?)
Well, hey … those are three categories of the bullying paradigm. I’ll stop here, and come back at a later time. I want to wrap up on somewhat of a redemptive perspective.
Bullies pay, at some point. They really do. There is a tremendous opportunity for some folks to come out of the hellish desert of being bullied, to experience some victory, some healing. And yet, there are countless individuals who did not / will not experience such victory, such healing in this lifetime, on this planet. Innocent sojourners have died, and will die by suicide or homicide. In those cases, I’d like to think that in their death, they are no longer suffering. The bully cannot get to them anymore. If one believes in eternal life, this is an important concept / reality to ponder. If one knows their God, their Christ, before their transition from the “here” to the “there” … from the “now” to the “then” … then there is immense, unfathomable peace beyond the horizon. And, again, the bullying is over. In the words of a student to a bully: “In a short while, I will be at peace, and in a better place. But you … you will still be a bully, and your payback is coming.”
Peace in the storms. Keep your eyes on the prize.