Excerpt from “Winter's Heart” (“The Wheel of Time”, book 9) by Robert Jordan “Oh, Light, why do I have a madman in my head? Why? Why”
I asked myself this question long ago when I was in the biggest emotional predicament in my life I needed support and consolation. I could not get in touch with my friends and parents. The surrounding me unconventional or honest people were ostracized and beaten like nails by a hammer until they were forced to hide their identities and merge with the crowd. I too started adopting the predominant opinions and attitudes to keep up appearances and soon became so skilled that I stopped realizing what I was doing and why did I even start to. Ironically in exchange I received more than I had dreamt of – broad-mindedness and empathy. All the contradicting principles I had, mine and imported, made me feel confused as if pointed by the random flow I did not know myself, or if there was such a thing as myself. I was never fully aware how deeply I had fallen into this abyss until just recently. It was a dream-like feeling of having someone crazy in my body doing things opposite to what the voice of my heart wished for. The voice was like a dream in a dream and the crazy man seemed undeniably real. I decided to throw away everything and make my new own credo from the scrap, by opening to every idea, and trying to understand and sympathize with everyone. These two cherished principles of mine-broad-mindedness and empathy helped me find the way to my true self. Thanks to them now I possess the courage and determination to walk the road I chose and to keep on it no matter what. Reverting to my old comatose state would be the same as committing a suicide.
Narrow-minded and lying to themselves people are saddest to observe and the most difficult to interact with, while the empathetic and broadminded people obtain lasting truths and make me proud to call myself a human.
Preoccupied with their appearance people fabricate increasingly complex facade until it absorbs them. In a robot-like manner they act like society expects them to, forgetting how to or fearing of listening to their own hearts, people end up living unhappy life, deemed proper by everybody, but actually desired by none.
The masks, now I realize were just another name for the “madman” - a...