You really are what you eat

You really are what you eat.

The moment I stopped listening to rap music, my whole world changed.

I’d always been the kid that was abused… not in the sexual sense, but in the sense that i wasn’t good enough. People always tried to treat me less than.

I don’t know if it was the way I looked, my personality or something just deeply ingrained in people.

But I could not accept it.

In my bones, I knew I was better than the treatment I was experiencing.

And the more angry I became, the more people wanted me to let it out – to let out the feeling of years of being bullied and ostracised for being different – to vent it through music or art.

So I began to rap, to remind myself of my rage, like an incantation every time I spoke the words, I soaked myself in the pain and abuse of others abused. The truth or their truth – I absorbed it and rationalised my own suffering and the reaction to that suffering. That combination only made things worse though. It actualized my feelings into fantasies. I wanted to hurt people for the hurt I’d felt. Some around me wanted to hurt women in someway or another because that’s what our heroes told us was okay. Most of the people around me felt the same or needed an outlet for their inner rage. The crazy thing is that it had been women who had given most of us everything. Fought for us, dedicated the little time they had after their daily struggle for us. They had shown us the only love we knew.

Burglaries, crime, anti-social behaviour, are all reactions to not being part of the system. Graffiti and petty criminal damage is simply the acting out and intolerance of a system that creates outsiders. For those that genuinely fit in, the achievers, the wealthy, the powerful. There is no need to not be part of the system.

The idea of the matrix is a simple concept, one conjured up as a direct result of desiring to belong. The outsider looking in. We have become more obsessed with escaping the matrix and hating anyone that exists there or at the very least pitying them for being asleep.

The matrix only has this terrible dark side because we haven’t combated the rage and darkness within us all. Greed, envy, selfishness and feelings of entitlement make for the worst versions of ourselves and then a music was born and with it an economy and a lifestyle; a vehicle to substantiate those feelings, to glorify them.

Rap music or more honestly; gangster rap music, did not free me. It gave rise to a character that I am so glad I put to rest. Gangster rap gave me an idea of what a man was supposed to be. But that is simply a concept derived from an angry mind, one fueled by terror and feelings of deep insecurity and paranoia.

I began to listen to the music that did not bring out the worst in me, but actually calmed me. Every line had a deeper meaning, but it wasn’t “so in your face” and expecting a reaction. I no longer had the desire to make the people who made periods of my life unbearable, suffer. I was free.

You really are what you eat.

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