Tears, Crying, and Emotions

I saw this Tolkien quote this morning and while I’m not the biggest Tolkien fan, I think he’s on to something.

I don’t know when it happened, but crying has somehow gotten a bad rap in our society. It’s seen as a sign of weakness – especially if you’re a man. It’s not a desirable quality, that’s for sure.

But why is it that way? What exactly is wrong with crying? Is it just someone showing a strong emotion that we don’t know how to handle? We tend to have to keep our emotions under wrap unless they are pleasant ones, because if they aren’t, not a lot of people want to hear about them.

And to be honest, I am a crier and sometimes I hate it. It does make me feel weak, even though there is nothing wrong about it. I mean, if the most powerful man to ever walk the face of this earth, Jesus, can cry over the death of his friend, why have we made crying something so weak? He cried even though He knew He was going to raise Lazarus from the dead, because being fully human, He still felt emotions. They are a part of the human experience, not a weakness.

We are uncomfortable, I believe, with strong displays of emotions because we haven’t been taught how to handle them in ourselves. But emotion in and of itself is not bad. Can our emotions lead us to do bad things, things we later regret? For sure, they absolutely can, but that doesn’t make the feelings bad.

Everyone wants to walk around pretending like they have no feelings, bottling it up because it’s not always socially appropriate to express feelings. But I want change that. And I think to change that I have to start by being okay with my own emotions. So I want to apologize if my actions are in the wrong, but I do not want to apologize for feeling things.

Human beings have emotions. Let’s remember that and try to treat others with compassion when they express them.

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