It’s easy to hate; let’s face it, destructive stuff is almost always easier than doing creative or constructive stuff. It doesn’t usually take as much effort, and even in those cases when it takes up more physical energy (like trashing a room) than doing something peaceful or loving, it gives us a very visceral satisfaction.
Is it any wonder that it wasn’t all that hard for the serpent (Satan) in the Garden of Eden to knock Adam and Eve off track? Bad boys and girls are almost always attractive on some level, and we secretly want to be them. In video games, if given a choice, I’ll often go the “good guy” route, but I almost always come back to the game to go the “bad boy” route because it’s fun. I sometimes feel wrong for finding it so fun, but I’m not going to lie and say it repels me and I always steer clear of it. I’m not some sanctimonious holier-than-thou dude, you know. I have plenty of other flaws, but that isn’t one of them.
Anyway, in preparing for today’s post, I remembered the character of Radio Raheem in the Spike Lee film Do the Right Thing, a movie I haven’t seen in its entirety since it first came out in the theaters. He had a four fingered ring on each had, each with a word on it in big gaudy letters—if you haven’t seen the movie, imagine brass knuckles with words on them and you’ll get the picture. Anyway, one of them said “Love” and other one said “Hate,” and this is what Radio Raheem said at one point about his finger attire:
Let me tell you the story of “Right Hand, Left Hand.” It’s a tale of good and evil. Hate: It was with this hand that Cain iced his brother. Love: These five fingers, they go straight to the soul of man. The right hand: the hand of love. The story of life is this: Static. One hand is always fighting the other hand; and the left hand is kicking much ass. I mean, it looks like the right hand, Love, is finished. But, hold on, stop the presses, the right hand is coming back. Yeah, he got the left hand on the ropes, now, that’s right. Ooh, it’s the devastating right and Hate is hurt, he’s down. Left-Hand Hate K.O.ed by Love.
I didn’t remember any of that monologue until I did a search on Google about “love and hate” in relation to that film. Maybe you don’t agree with me, but what that character Radio Raheem says is deep. It’s true.
Many Christians hate on non-Christians and many non-Christians hate on Christians. And then a lot of these same folks hate on their own folks. What an effed-up mess that is.
We can choose the route of love or the route of hate in life. Truth be told, most of us will switch between those roads a lot, but in the end, we all choose primarily to use one of those roads to get to where we’re going in life. Hate can get you far sometimes, I have no doubt of that. But love is the one that is going to have the most chance of getting you somewhere valuable and helping the people around you find their way to better places in life, too.