Somebody pointed out to me the other day that I was a “remarkable person”. It is remarkable how an insight of great profundity comes so casually, at an inconsquential moment, as an aside, a statement of the obvious.
Bluntly, it is my resistance to attack which is so remarkable. I received many snarling attacks at the mouths of my childhood family; attacks from teachers at school and university; attacks from clergy; from employers. These attacks were provoked by jealousy, by fearful incomprehension at the intensity and wit of my perspective, by suspicion, or at best by natural animosity. Against these, I have scored many fine victories: enemies, often holy, have been vanquished; at other times, an advantageous truce achieved; defeats have been forgotten. I have found many allies willing to mix my remarkable brilliance with their own.
However, the wounds inflicted in battle can, alas, make for remarkable weaknesses, and for susceptibility to renewed attack – and ill-thought attacking. The foremost of these weaknesses-wounds is narcisism: obsessing over my text; an infantile need for recognition; a misperception of my remarkableness and insecurity of ambition. It is a devil that goeth not out except by the public confession of my own remarkable self.