I have never been a fan of horror flicks. But I let myself get persuaded by a friend to see this one. Of course, the most persuasive line was that the lead actor was an eye-candy.
Yes he was. However, it was not what struck me with the film. Neither was the dirty and matted-hair ghost of a dead woman floating beside a speeding car nor her almost decomposed body on the bed because her mother couldn’t just bear the thought of burying her. Still to be honest, I now refuse to look behind me while walking in dimly-lit halls.
But what struck me was the image of guilt carried on the shoulders of Tun played by Ananda Everingham. Disturbing for it is true.
Guilt is indeed a weighty burden to bear. As such, there are times that I do not want to pick it up.
Maybe due to pride, a high regard of one’s self (healthy on one respect, can also be destructive on another), self-preservation, or just plain denseness– I sometimes take guilt in strides.
But I do know that I cause harm.
Of course they are not deliberate acts like murder, plunder or cheating on elections. Only a pachyderm of the highest level will not feel guilty with these.
The more complicated ones are those I do inadvertently. But I guess, the most well-meaning among us can also offend others. Nobody can be Ms. Congeniality every second of every minute of his life. It can be something I said in jest, a joke that was way out of line, or something that I did. Or something I did not do.
Most of the time, I am not conscious about it and it takes a while for these to sink in. Sometimes I even try to lighten my guilt by placing the blame on the other party. Blame it on his oversensitivity. Blame it on his hangups. Blame it on his nature. Blame it on the weather. Whatever.
True, the blame cannot be equal. But who said that it should be? Inequality is part of the current societal setup and fault is of no exception.
But the point really is that I also have my own faults. They may be minor or secondary but they are there and nothing good can come out with getting all uppity and high-handed about them.
We need a healthy dose of guilt sometimes. A good exercise is to imagine the harm we’ve caused others, the hurt we inflicted on those around us, the anxiety we made others feel, and the pain that we somehow stirred on other people.
It can be very heavy indeed that we may find ourselves depressed and our backs bent to a 90-degree angle with the stuffs we are trying to carry. Then again, if handled well, it can be liberating and can usually make us a better person.
Now, if only I can imagine Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo doing the same ….