Moving from denial about the past leads to grandiosity. From accepting the position of the victim, deserving of whatever befell me, I discovered that I did not deserve every bad thing. I did not “justly deserve thy [or anyone’s] temporal and eternal punishment.” The just punishment for being careless with a cigarette is not losing all one’s possessions and living on the street for six months. I emerged into a being with some sort of expectations.
If I didn’t deserve temporal and eternal punishment, maybe I deserved paradise. Maybe I was special and I was smart and could do things other people couldn’t do. Headlong, I fell into the evil genius. I could fight with my mind. I was worthy of some sort of respect by these rules. Then worthlessness again. Evil genius worthless genius.
Etching through years of dross skin grown thick over silver, to carve out backwards. Worthless. Genius. The quality of the etcher determines the quality of me. The pattern of the past under the dross seems strange under the light. The facts may be there, but who etches them into meaning? Speaking … I am pompous or self-pitying, worthless genius.
Does the archetype Paranoid do the etching? Or the Manic? Or Anxious? Or Suicidal? Four artists fighting for the etching needle, creating god knows what. Which is right? Which one is true, after all: genius or worthless? Middle ground shows you do not understand the question.