: our statement
and Community |
by Laric, 6/22/01
"No matter where we are... everyone is always connected."
- Lain, serial experiments lain
Is the rise in multiple ways of life simply an issue that has only
been noticed now, or is it that which has linked us all along? In
order to pull together as a species, there must always be the capacity
of humans to connect with one another. Otherwise the creature itself
fails; any mass that cannot keep its cohesion will ultimately self-destruct.
As multiples or those on a multiple frame of life--all these varieties
of terms are tripping me up, I swear--we have the useful trait of
recognizing within us and containing a certain amount of more direct
control over how we adapt. We have or develop an inherent sense
of communities and societies because we mirror--or vice versa--them
with our internal structures. After a time of living as a group
plural, we begin to stop thinking in terms of but a single individual,
and more with the capacity of the collective in mind. Even when
I work through personal matters, I am -always- aware that there
are others whose well-being depends on how I carry myself, and that
I am hinged upon them as well. Again, I speak from personal experience
in this, so my apologies if I overstep my bounds.
This is less a privileged gift than simple experience; other cultures
than that of American (which I hail from) can be more or less prone
to the individual needs over that of the community. Some of the
Asian nations, particularly that of Japan, are excellent examples
of this--sometimes it is more important to keep the waters smooth
than to dig up personal victories at the cost of others. We see
the ability of being able to 'work well in groups' as more and more
important in this interconnected world of the digital and chemical.
Internally, we follow these principles because otherwise the system
breaks down and we begin to have pesky issues, such as one person
vengefully taking out the body for an all-nighter just before another
person's big presentation the next day.
It has been suggested to me that, although the argument can be
made either for the mass size giving rise to frequency or simply
social conditions, the trait to contain different mindsets within
a single skull is one with necessary evolutionary purpose. As size
of the physical mass of the species grows, it must continue to keep
the bridgework of connections within. We can see this in our own
minds with multiplicity--again, this is an assumption made primarily
from our own experience, but as our system refined itself, our vessels
for internal communications also increased in importance and fine
We -know- that identity is fluid. It is that we haven't yet, as
a species, always realized how to take responsibility for it. We
are taught to sever ourselves from one another to be 'healthy',
to refuse all external evidence if need be and give ourselves our
own validity. We are told to not be responsible for the actions
of others, and by this, we cannot accept the infinite within ourselves,
or the fluidity of identity. It is either black or white. It is
either our fault, or someone else's entirely--a choice which falls
more and more, unfortunately, towards the latter.
We have an entire culture of denying our own roles in things. We
sue fast-food chains for coffee which is hot. Is it any wonder that
people have fallen to the idea of "DID" as an easy excuse
for their own actions? The backlash against multiples has been simply
incredible. We have been the latest hot topic for anyone seeking
a little publicity, sympathy, or absolution. We have been splashed
across tabloids and used to spice up cheap paperback novels. We
have been stalked by ooh-ing dabblers and symbol-clad priests. If
our experience with our selves is not mainstream enough, we are
dismissed as being further delusional, or, even better, faking for
some ulterior motive. Above all, we are also considered a fad--one
which must be demystified by an irate psychological community at
Unfortunately, multiples are a group which is highly open to exploitation.
Because we do not have as concrete a scientific 'proof' with which
to judge multiplicity--and, many would argue, this is impossible--nearly
anyone can attempt to reap the 'benefits' of the label and take
few of the penalties. As has been said, claiming that one is a multiple
has become an instant way to be assumed that one's life has been
filled with tragedies that no one else could possibly imagine and
therefore grants one the pretty gold star of the brave survivor
who yet should still be coddled by those around them. Going back
to the Asian lands, it is almost stunning how filled the popular
media--from manga to anime to literature--is with multiplicity,
but one is expected to handle it and continue on rather than have
the excuse to go on a massive spree of destruction and blithely
set the blame on someone else.
(Pardon the bitterness; we have had poor experiences in the past
with people attempting to 'out-multiple' us, or to excuse all their
rudenesses as something 'we would understand, being the same way.'
I'm not certain about anyone else, but I'd rather pour a heavy dose
of chlorine into their section of the gene pool. What possible status
is there to be gained in 'out-multipling' someone? How disturbing.)
Anyway. The understanding of others.
We use it to sculpt that which we would communicate with. We use
it to be able to consider other people as equally important to our
selves--if not more so--and to be able to understand them back.
We have the ability to put our own egos aside and taste that of
others, seeing through their eyes and listening to their thoughts,
feeling what they feel. Is multiplicity a disorder? How can it be,
when its primary gift in practice is to be able to let a mind adapt
and comprehend others in the species? Without this trait, there
could be no solidarity within the human race.
To those who would fault multiple identities, I would say this:
how can you condemn me for the very things that let me understand