A word that has been gaining use in social medias and short conversations is the word hate. It is a small word and one that carries a significant amount of weight. As such we will ask a few questions here and how it impacts those who are the focus of hate.
What is it? How is it used? Why is it an important emotion? How can it be a destructive emotion?
The definitions found through various locations in online formats is “Intense or passionate dislike”. Words like loath and detest have a similar purpose of use and in certain contexts and situations these words are most likely a better descriptor but rarely used. As with many words in our culture today, Hate can be a loaded word and used in ways that don’t clarify what is being “disliked”. The way the intensity of the emotion is seen is typically in the delivery or the passionate tone of voice or through bodily experience. It is also important to understand what the details of “passionate” are. Hate is something that many think they know when the emotion is felt or when they have thoughts about it. Despite this, knowing how to articulate the passionate dislike can be hard. The ability to verbally talking through the hate has seemingly eroded over time. It is also important to know if the emotion of hate can be a helpful or it is is harmful. Is hating something (an object or thought) different than hating a person? The reason this is important is when someone is hating another and the way that effects a relationship. Hating an object or idea has vastly different outcomes than hating an individual.
To understand what it is to be hated, one must understand what is actually being the focal point of the thing that is being disliked. It is cruel and damaging to act upon hatred and not understand the specifics of hate. It is cruel to lack specifics and not be able to specify the details of the dislike. If you hate someone then it is critical to know that rarely is it the case that you hate every single thing about that person and the cellular make up level. If you hate someone it is usually a specific thing of that person that is being hated. Usually hatred is generalized and the specifics get lost. (Unfortunately, hatred usually is an all of nothing thing) On the other side of the coin, it is important to understand the person on the “hated” end. If you are the hated person why are you hated? The difference is important. Another important clarification is the manifestation of hate. How are you being hated? How is that being communicated or acted out? Is it something you are, stand, for, or believe in?
If you dislike something or being disliked for something then what does that mean? What do you do with that or what does the person with the dislike do with it? For either side, more information needs to be uncovered on the dislike, why the dislike, the intensity of the dislike, and the impact of this on the lives of both sides.
People of faith are usually hated, not because they are disliked through and through but because there is something specific that is being disliked. That something specific is then extrapolated to the whole. To be hated is usually to have something or belief that is being hated. The hater however usually generalizes and hates the full and the person being hated usually believes that they are hated in totality. These assumptions needs to be flushed out.
It is important to recognizes how dogma can impact and drive hatred. It is ok to hate something (have a passionate dislike), but it isn’t ok to hate on a generalizable level and used as weapons to destroy someone. Hate as an emotion has its place. Hate directed towards someone in totality isn’t correct. It is critical that hate be specific, not generalized. To be hated doesn’t mean that you are being hated in general. The person who is hating might not be able to be specific but they don’t hate everything they hate something. If you are hated it is important to recognize that you are not totally wrong, it is something specific that they dislike. It may also be that the person hates something you believe in and not you specifically.
When faith is held it is likely that the believer will be hated to some degree, it is not the case that the believer is all bad. The all or nothing thinking that this world gets caught up in isn’t helpful. People today do not seem to want to think and articulate. People find it easier to generalize not specify. Being hated doesn’t always mean that you are doing something that is detestable. The thing that is being disliked needs to be evaluated and understood. To be hated is not comfortable. If someone hates you explore why. Don’t always take it personally, as the hate might be due to a reason that was not your decision. If we are a certain skin color or gender or person we might be hated just because of that. That is not the fault of the one being hated, it is based on something specific. If you are hated because of the faith you have doesn’t mean it is necessarily your fault. You are hated because of something specific of the faith that you are holding. Hated because the faith is hated. There is something more there that needs to be taken into account.
To be hated may not be comfortable but it doesn’t necessarily indicate something is wrong that needs to change. Things that are truthful usually are hated in culture today. Being hated for a belief system or because of what the faith says is not a bad thing. Being hated in this way is being hated due to association which is different than being hated for something more personal. For a faithful person to be hated due to a command by God is to be hated for something by associate. To he hated for something like this could actually be an encouragement for the believer as they are holding to their believe system. The hate could be considered good news to a degree. For the faithful to be disliked due to a belief will happen. It is important for the faithful person not to adopt and identify with being wrong or not good enough but to understand what is being hated. Being hated should not detract from faithful living and beliefs. Being hated should not steel the joy and direction that faith brings to life. Being hated by a belief may be an inevitable thing but does not have to be a deterministic thing.
Hating something or being hated for something is just the start to further conversation and exploration. Don’t let hate be the end. “Having a passionate dislike for something needs to be explored and being hated by someone needs to be understood appropriatly.