The Wolves of Suppression

Sometimes I think about domestication. Not just domestication in terms of animals… but, as it pertains to describing what we’ve done to ourselves. Maybe it’s necessary to keep society rolling the way it is. Cooling off our natural instincts and applying that energy towards self control. Compliance with externalized expectations and spoken or unspoken rules… all under the pressures of impending punishment or withdrawal of reward. It keeps us in some kind of line.

A dog, when it’s being trained, is given rewards and punishments or withdrawal of reward to shape its choices moving forward to be more favorable for the use of the one it’s being trained for, for the one it’s meant to serve. I think about who we’re trained for, who we’re meant to serve.

I’m not sure who that is. Is it each other, is it ourselves (I think that it should be), is it the greater good, is it just a game orchestrated to strategically reward someone it benefits? Do I even care about whomever it all benefits?

The best trained dogs perform from a place of loving their master. Their reward is connection. Their reward is a shared experience with another, a simultaneous giving and receiving. It touches on something intrinsic, that arises from within them. Do we have that? Does our society’s dynamic allow for it?

I don’t think it always does. Beneath the tense restraint of even the best trained dogs there lies a calling itching to get out, to grow up, to exercise individual choice. To erupt with purely self imagined creative power onto the seen of their very own perceived existence. An instinct to be fully who they are, exactly where they are, for exactly no one other than their own heart. Sometimes, even at the pinnacle of our best domesticated performances, do you feel the itch of that instinct calling you?

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