It came swiftly and with a harshness I have grown to expect. “Don’t you believe in change, in making things better?,” I was asked with a rhetorical twist of lemon so sour it curled upon itself with three dots trailing, dripping some mix of blood and venom.
“Why do you take us to the edges of the issues, purifying them beyond belief and being, beyond any possible doing?,” I was asked. “Do you espouse the way the world is?,” two of them joined in the accusation which a joining of minds heightened to a pitch which humans can barely hear but twitches at the skin’s ends vibrating with a sharpness which cuts.
I replied that I tried to make them think beyond experience, deeper than they had imagined; that if they didn’t want to study with a teacher, why not go their own way and not attack the idea of teaching and of the teacher. Why did they think that when I tried to overdraw a situation, to describe it that they will look at it critically to see if I saw what is there, that they can begin to see beyond their current beliefs, that I do not think that what is, is what should be.
“Qualify what you see and what you say, that we know what you really believe,” I was told. I replied that my being there, my instancing myself, was the best I could do to exemplify who I am, what I say and do.
To provoke their questions, in or out of passion or anger, was to promote their seeking, their being students of their own worlds. Against teachers, against teaching, they wanted me to tell them just what I thought. I, reflecting upon how Nietzsche was misunderstood in spite of qualifying, stood my ground as a teacher who would try to get them to think, to study, to inquire…