All the world’s a stage,
and all the men and women merely players;
[William Shakespeare, As You Like It]
I have been meaning to reply to posts about
good legionaries and
I met with a former superior a while ago; he left the legion as well. Meeting with him was a bit scary. He was one of my superiors, or my
conditioner as a friend of mine called him, in a very strict period of formation. I remembered his corrections, his penances, his
calling attention to, and his demands. Yet I also remembered his humor, his jokes, and his laugh.
Immediately I met him he gave me a genuine (and warmer than legionary) embrace and he also apologized for any hardships he may have caused me. Both were very welcome, but I knew immediately that this wasn?t the same person who was my superior. This was the real person behind it.
Legionaries all assume roles and play them out. I felt that that was the first time I actually met him, the individual and what a different person! It is like we were two actors who only ever met each other on stage and now finally after ten years we met for real.
I suppose that what I am trying to say is that I realize or believe that it is not the individuals who have hurt me or others, but the system, the role imposed upon them. I dont blame Fr. Superior for things he said or did that hurt me, he had to do those things and I know they hurt him too. I?m sure he got his orders from above, but even so it is the system or maybe just the highest authorities in the legion who are to blame.
When you meet a legionary, you meet an individual who carries around a ventriloquist?s dummy. Sometimes the dummy (legionary formation) speaks and sometimes the individual speaks: 0r a man with two heads. Yet, it isn?t as simple to differentiate between the two.
We all know what kind of person enters the Legion, because they are people like us. Good people, genuine and warm hearted people. We know what the legion makes them into. And although it is hard, I try to remember that when I think of legionaries that have hurt me.
I don?t hate any Legionary, and I miss many of my brothers who are still there, or who have left but are still out of reach. It is what they do, or some of them do, that can be heinous. Yet these actions do not come from themselves but from the legion in them.
I hope this makes sense and I wonder if you agree or think differently.