The first time I cried during a movie, was when I saw Honey I Shrunk The Kids. And, believe it or not, I (like many other people) cried over the death of an ant, named Antie; who selflessly sacrificed his life defending the vulnerable children from a “giant” scorpion.
As the years passed by, I developed a much thicker skin. “Society” had conditioned me to believe that crying was a sign of weakness, which is common for males.
I grew up in a very tough city, and in a tough family, and emotional expression in this context was generally frowned upon.
This unhealthy repression of natural emotions is a symptom of a much deeper disease that plagues our society at large — the disease of ignorance.
“Softness is not weakness. It takes courage to stay delicate in a world this cruel.”
It was only when I got older (and wiser) that I began to realize that allowing oneself the freedom to cry through the scene of a powerful movie — or any other setting that evoked this particular emotional response — was actually a sign of great strength and character.
You see, those who cry during certain movies, possess the great power of empathy. And those who cry freely in public settings, possess the self confidence to be free from the need for external approval.
Empathy is the characteristic of great leaders, and is primarily earned through the enrichment of life experience — which is the most difficult form of education to acquire. A true leader must have a strong sense of empathy, or they simply do not qualify for their position. It does not matter what University they went to, how exceptional their grades are, or how powerful their public speeches — no one should be able to lead another human being if they cannot relate to them, and feel some of their pain. This is precisely why most politicians are unfit for their positions.
— Attributed to Thales
Next time you feel the urge to cry, just let it be. Observe what is preventing you from indulging in this simple freedom. What thoughts and fears come to mind?
Crying is just as natural and healthy as laughing. Resisting this impulse, however, is not. And whatever fear is holding you back from simply being free to just be yourself, this is your real enemy that you need to conquer.
As it has been said, in one context or another by countless great minds before us and yet to come; Know Thyself. And it is only through becoming acquainted with our emotions within, that we will ever be able to successfully do this.
Crying is not weakness. Holding back your emotions because you fear what others might think, is weakness.
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