yearn for relationship

Since the moment we are born, we are constantly developing a relationship, which has consequences. Our relationship begins with the Earth. Regardless how we partake in the natural relationship, there are negative affects of an imbalance of using the natural resources. This was shown through our reading of the “The Daodejing of Laozi”. After birth, the creation of a relationship continues to our family. According to Freud, it is innate that incest-like thoughts were being suppressed. According to society, incest is a negative aspect and is looked down upon. Our placement in our family is either a positive one or a negative one. It is dependent on our ability to give something to the family. In Kafka’s “Metamorphosis”, a lack of a son’s ability to provide financial stability to the family is shunned.  As we continue on life’s journey, we develop friendships. Like the friendship between Gilgamesh and Enkidu, they remain strong friends despite their differences. But, once one dies, it ends the friendship, and it becomes hard to be without that person. This is also shown through the relationship of a significant other. Dedicating one’s life to a lover, like Candide did towards Cunegonde caused him to be really upset when he learned Cunegonde died. Death has caused an end to these relationships. Lastly, a vital relationship one needs to have is with himself. It takes sometimes-drastic adventures, such as war in “The Yellow Birds”, for one to learn things about himself and life. Throughout life, we are creating and destroying relationships. What is important is maintaining the truest relationships.

In the photograph, “Dream of Green”, by Kim, Do Myoung, the people in the photo represent humanity as a component of nature. We are apart of Earth. Therefore, once one is born, they have his original encounter with nature. The relationship with nature is the first relationship we all have, and is important to maintain. In “The Daodejing of Laozi”, it is stated, “Work [Earth] and more will come forth. An excess of speech will lead to exhaustion, It is better to hold on to the mean” (page 5). Our relationship with nature is described as an equivalent mutual one. If we add positives factors to the Earth, like planting trees, or crops, then positive outcomes will arise. On the other hand, if we add negative aspects to the Earth, like land or water pollution, then negative results come. It is important to maintain a balance of our actions on Earth. The video caption provided is from, “Koyaanisqats”. The movie shows how peaceful and in-balance Earth is without any human destruction. Later in the movie, it shows a discord of humanity’ s industrial acts and the serenity of Earth. The director, Godfrey Reggio, used a combination of music and imagery to show the natural beauty of Earth versus the irreversible destruction of Earth from humanity. In attempt to accommodate for its needs, humanity is simultaneously ruining its original, and perhaps most vital, relationship with Earth.
The next relationship one has is with his family. Familial relationship is inevitable and there is no way to select one. Once one is born, he is born into a family. A typical, generic family looks like the 1857 photograph, “The Royal Family”, composed of a mother, father, and sibling(s). According to Freud, “[People] give the name ‘love’ to the positive feelings between parents and children, and between the brothers and sisters of a family, although we are obliged to describe this as ‘aim-inhibited love’ or ‘affection’. Love with an inhibited aim was in fact originally fully sensual love, and it is so still in man’s unconscious” (Civilization and Its Discontents, 49-50). Although the thought of incest acts is taboo in society, Freud points out that incest is innately deep in one’s mind. Trying to obtain a “sensual love” within the family has even resulted in biological deformities of children (i.e. Down Syndrome). Freud would support the video caption I provided, “ Family Guy Chris Gives Kissy Kissy to Meg”. Freud stated that incest is logical, because the first civilization started as a family that had to sexually reproduce in order to create more citizens within the civilization: “The first result of civilization was that even a fairly large number of people were now able to live together in a community… One might expect that the further development of civilization would proceed smoothly towards an even better control over the external world and the community” (Civilization and Its Discontents, 48). It has been evident that attempting to finding romantic love within the family leads to not only biological issues of the child, but also a taboo that is looked down upon in society.
As one continues to age, he develops a relationship with his family in which his actions can cause disappointment to the family. In the painting, “Lynch Family”, a mother seems to be shunning her child. This is relative to Kafka’s, “Metamorphosis”. Gregor attempts to maintain his family’s financial stability by being the only one working. The narrator states, “Their family misfortune had reduced the family to a state of total despair…so then [Gregor} started working especially hard… travelling representative almost overnight, bringing with it the chance to earn money in quite different ways” (book II). Due to a business fail, Gregor was relied on completely for buying his family food, water, and shelter. Consequently, once Gregor transformed into a bug, he was unable to work for his family. Therefore, he disappointed his mother and the rest of his family. It was the point that Gregor was seen as an ATM. He was only beneficial for his money. His relationship with his family went downhill as soon as he no longer offered a way of money. His family decided to get rid of him, because he no longer provided money. On the other hand, the video caption, “Kid Hits His Mom on Dr. Phil” shows a son and mother’s relationship tainted due to the son’s lack of respect towards the family. While Gregor respected his family so much as to not miss a single workday, the kid who hits his mom doesn’t see the strong disrespect his is giving her.
After one gets older in age and stems away from the familial relationship, one begins to make friends. An ironic friendship was between Gilgamesh and Enkidu in “The Epic of Gilgamesh”. Enkidu, who was created to be Gilgamesh’s opponent, became good friends with Gilgamesh. In fact, Gilgamesh and Enkidu worked together and fought a common enemy, Humbaba, a demon of the Cedar Forest. Enkidu and Gilgamesh understand that killing Humbaba could result in drastic consequences if the gods know, but do it anyway. This is exemplified through stone artifact of two men holding down a common enemy. At the battle against Humbaba, Gilgamesh contemplates being merciful towards Humbaba, but Enkidu tells Gilgamesh to kill him despite Humbaba’s attempt to save his own life. Inevitably, the gods find out about Humbaba’s murder, and order death of Enkidu, the mortal, as a consequence. The death of Enkidu was not only a consequence for him, but it also left Gilgamesh upset. Gilgamesh built Enkidu aThis shows that Gilgamesh and Enkidu had a strong friendship. Gilgamesh has a statue of Enkidu built to show his respect for his friend, and stands by his dead body. The strength of Enkidu’s and Gilgamesh’s friendship was strong despite being different; Gilgamesh was immortal, handsome, and strong, while Enkidu was hairy and mortal. Similarly, to the strong friendship between Gilgamesh and Enkidu, exists a strong friendship between Spongebob Squarepants and Patrick Star. This is shown through the video caption. Spongebob and Patrick are different through intellect and appearance, but still have a strong friendship. A friendship is only as strong as the people make it to be, when looking past their differences.
At a certain age, one begins to look for love from a significant other. The desire to find love can be so strong that if one of the partners in the relationship leaves, or dies, then it can be very drastic for the other. In the artwork, “Lovers Surprised by Death”, death is shown as an end to the two lovers’ relationship. Similarly in the Voltaire’s, “Candide”, Candide’s lover, Cunegonde dies, and he feels a strong remorse. He avenges Cunegonde by killing the Bulgarians, the ones that killed her. Candide exclaims: “Alas! I know this love, that sovereign of hearts, that soul of our souls; yet it never cost me more than a kiss and twenty kicks on the backside. How could this beautiful cause produce in you an effect so abominable?” (Volitaire). Candide discovers that investing his all into Cunegonde resulted in her death that felt as if he lost himself. The death of a lover is also shown in the video caption, “Forrest Gump, Best Scene Ever.” Forrest loved and put his all into Jenny, and inevitably she died. The death of Jenny and Cunegonde was hard for both Forrest and Candide, because they lost their lovers forever. Death is a way of never physically being with their lovers.
The most important, vital relationship we have throughout our lives is with ourselves. From our relationship with ourselves, we develop relationships with others. We are with ourselves throughout our whole life, and it is important to have a fruitful relationship with ourselves. In Kevin Powers’ “The Yellow Birds”, Bartle endures his adventures in war that help him discover who he is as a person. Bartle learned from war that death is apart of life and it is needs to be accepted. It takes such an adverse experience as war to discover more about oneself. In the Forrest Gump video caption, Lieutenant Dan asked Forrest why did he save him, because it was his job to die in battle. He exclaims that he is no longer who be originally was, because he lost both of his legs. Forrest tells him he is still himself. That shows that you don’t lose yourself in battle, or other adverse situations, but you gain another component of yourself. In the artwork, “Anxiety”, it shows that it can be stressful to discover oneself. The relationship of oneself is a hard and anxiety-ridden. It can take about a lifetime for one to know who he truly is.
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