What do we call hate?  

“Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.” – C. G. Jung

The Merriam-Webster’s dictionary defines hate as; “a:  intense hostility and aversion usually deriving from fear, anger, or sense of injury. b:  extreme dislike or antipathy.” Whereas, the Oxford Dictionary of English reports “hate” as: – “intense dislike – feelings of hate and revenge.”

These are just two definitions, probably any of us has different ones. But, there is something in which we can all agree on: hate is part of the human feeling? As a feeling it is not material, it is not limitable. It is liquid and it can take different shapes.  Someone sees hate as the other face of love, someone says that hate can become love and love can become hate, and another sees hate as the opposite of love.

As love and hate would represent a strong feeling that has had a central importance in human history. For example, we can see that for the building of a group’s identity it is common to research for a common enemy and therefore, hate can be a reason for unity; “The enemy of my enemy is my friend”. And, clearly, hate is a reason for the division as well.

We can see hate as a negative feeling because it includes feelings such as fear, anger,… etc. which are sometimes recognized as negative emotions, or we can see it as a positive one because if we hate something because it hurts us somehow, we will stay away from it. What is the objective of having hate existing in the human history? So, the question is: can hate be overtaken by humans? And if yes: since it is a human feeling, which implications would it bring?

Personally, I do not know if it is possible or not but, I think that we need it to understand our nature since it is part of it. We discover ourselves by relating to the other: we can be haters, lovers, friends,… etc. Relationship helps us in understanding what we think we are, how the others see us and how we would like to be. Following the definitions of the two dictionaries at the beginning of this article: hates is hostility, intense dislike, usually deriving from fear, anger, or sense of injury. But, what is that we fear and what makes us angry? It’s what we do not know and what we would like to be or act differently.

For the first one, the solution could be theoretically easy: learn to know what we fear. For the second one it is more complicated, sometimes we can search for the reason why we would like something or someone to be different and it can help us in changing our point of view. Moreover, not liking something, it does not mean to hate it. If we can see and understand why we do not like something and we are able to take responsibility for our feelings and not to put a label as “bad” then, we could change our point-of-view. “This person is not bad or hateful, the eyes which judge are mine. This person has no responsibility for my feeling, they are mine. When I see this person I feel fear, angry…etc.”. So the question can be: is hate really necessary? What if we recognize something that we do not like something that does not fit with our expectations? Can we deal with it? Can we still respect it? By Andrea Maulini

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