I've been described as a tough and noisy woman, a prize fighter, a man-hater, you name it. They call me Battling Bella, Mother Courage, and a Jewish mother with more complaints than Portnoy. There are those who say I'm impatient, impetuous, uppity, rude, profane, brash, and overbearing. Whether I'm any of those things, or all of them, you can decide for yourself. But whatever I am -- and this ought to be made very clear -- I am a very serious woman.
It is naive to think that self-assertiveness is easy. To live self-assertively--which means to live authentically--is an act of high courage. That is why so many people spend the better part of their lives in hiding--from others and also from themselves.
I have repeatedly stressed that the selfish impulses of man constitute a much less historic danger than his integrative tendencies. To put it in the simplest way: the individual who indulges in an excess of aggressive self-assertiveness incurs the penalties of society-he outlaws himself, he contracts out of the hierarchy. The true believer, on the other hand, becomes more closely knit into it; he enters the womb of his church, or party, or whatever the social holon to which he surrenders his identity.
Such exaggerations have been so common that the public takes them with a grain of salt and partly excuses them as being due to the advertiser's license of self-assertiveness. Nevertheless, the fact remains that superlative generalities are weak arguments and far less convincing than a statement of facts. Much advertising copy would be improved immensely by doing away with brag and substituting actual facts about the merits of the article.
Mother Nature's ruthless to the weak, but isn't arbitrary cruel or negative. Mother Nature saves aggression for extreme situations, and instead uses consistent leadership--to help keep things running smoothly. Mother nature doesn't rule by fear and anger, but by calm strength and assertiveness.
Modesty is related to diffidence, diffidence is related to shyness, Shyness is a synonym for timidity, timidity is a characteristic of the meek, the meek do not inherit the Earth, they serve those who are self confident and self assertive.
The mark of the modern world is the imagination of its profiteers and the counter-assertiveness of the oppressed. Exploitation and the refusal to accept exploitation as either inevitable or just constitute the continuing antinomy of the modern era, joined together in a dialectic which has far from reached its climax in the twentieth century.