Resilience or denial?

I was born in Lebanon during the civil war (1975-1990) and I grew up to the sounds of bombs, which back then seemed very normal to me. Even today, I ask myself how I was not scared, how was I able as a child to find bombs and hiding underground a sort of an amusement. In 1990, Syria occupied Lebanon until 2005. It was a dictatorial occupation, an iron stranglehold which gave a lot of security to the country and some economic growth. Since 2005, we have known peace and turmoils, and now an economic and financial crisis like never known before; some says it is a reminder of the eve of WWI.

On parallel, Lebanon has always been the party place of the world. We party all day. We party for any reason. We party for no reason. I guess we love wars and partying. Some might say it is resilience or probably denial. There is a fine line between resilience and denial. Resilience is the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness. It is being mentally flexible to adapt to difficult situations in order to survive. On the other hand, denial is trying to self-protection by refusing to accept the truth about something that’s happening in life. Maybe, we are both and any Lebanese somehow is both wherever they live.

Turmoil and party may seem contradictory but it is not. On this, I like to refer to Nietzsche in The Birth of tragedy where he explains the relationship between tragedy and music.

Life to Nietzsche is essentially tragic and tragedy can happen to anyone. The ultimate tragedy is death; the latter gives meaning to life. Knowing and accepting tragedy can only result in a celebration of life. Therefore music and partying are a celebration of life; a life lived on the edge of tragedy. When the day is gone with its worries and tasks, here comes the night in its gravity and depth, the drunkenness of love and beauty. In other words, only a joyful night can make an enjoyable day. Because, whatever we do, tragedy is around the corner.

Is this attitude resilient or a denial? I guess it is neither nor. It is the attitude of anyone who lives on the edge where every action can be like stepping on a landmine.

13 thoughts on “Resilience or denial?”

  1. Good one my friend.
    As a child it is all a play and that is so awesome.
    Resilient or denial is just a perspective I think. I have learned to accept life as it is. And this acceptance of mine, my son calls living in denial 😇

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Resilience yes, but not I think denial — perhaps more a conscious suppression? A choosing for the sake of ones emotional well-being. And the partying? — perhaps a subconscious attempt for emotional balance between one extreme and the other.

    In my opinion, One has to admire the Lebanese for refusing to give in to the dangerous and frightening life-circumstances out of their control by counteracting these experiences in creating positive party-happy memories in defiance.

    Yet, only those who have experienced something that horrific and ongoing as war can truly know for sure, as you have. The rest of us — are just guessing! I wonder May Lynn? How have these experiences changed you? And in what way? Surely they have left a mark of difference.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Well, I don’t wish it for anyone. War can shape you forever. As people, we all have post traumatic syndrome disorder PTSD. But also it creates in the victim this desire to live on the edge.
      Thank you my friend, always looking forward to reading your comments.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Wow, yes I can see that now! Your normal has been changed forever and Living on the edge is the only way for you, to feel that normal life again. Fascinating insight and one most of us would never imagine. Be well Maylynno!

        Liked by 1 person

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