Let Off Steam Harmlessly

Stephen C. Rose
Feb 26, 2015 · 3 min read

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When we say let off steam, we kid you not.

Our cybercommunity with four walkable levels and no stairways will be a boon to general health and physical fitness. Persons of all ages and most conditions will naturally traverse at least the 200 feet of their immediate bailiwick.

Many will make a point of strolling far and wide to people-watch, visit certain kiosks and spend time in the sacred space we have already described. It is likely many will walk to work — never more than a mile. A mile is the length, from end to end, of a cybercommunity.

A mile for reference is 20 short Manhattan (NYC) blocks.

Work will either be in the cybercommunity or remote jobs whose offices will be an evolution of internet cafes — away from home if that is a preference.

Each 200 foot “home” segment will include a ramp that rises a full fifteen feet to connect with the level above. Such gentle inclines will add to the health benefits of walking.

This particular text is not just about exercise and about work arrangements. It is about letting off steam. It is about the serious matter of anger. It is about transcending the old Nietzschean saw that separates the frenetic, dancing Dionysus from the staid, judicious Apollo.

Of course, these seeming polarities exist in everyone. We emote. We think. We vacillate. We change. And yes we get mad. So everyone at some point can benefit from some anger work. For most, catharsis, physical release from feelings of rage and anger, does the trick.

Catharsis is a private experience in the presence of a guide or counselor. You pound pillows. Or have some other form of expression. You do it until you can’t do it anymore. That’s it.

You literally let fly. But at objects that will not be injured when you strike them. Your goal is to give anger a physical form. Get it out. Achieve a state of enervation because anger has dissipated. Allow emotions that might fester and lead to serious self-injury or harm to others to come to a head where they do no harm. In the presence of someone you trust. Afterwards you talk, share your feelings. You are respected and affirmed.

The effect on you is release, relief, the capacity to move past the anger. Part of this is will. You have willed to do this. It is affirmation.

It is also an obliteration of any body-mind dualism. Body and mind are one as anyone who types words knows.

You have dispelled resentment not merely harmlessly but advantageously. The culmination of the exercise is not enervation but a mild sort of elation.

I am sure there are different exercises that can be used in the same way to create cathartic events.

As we approach intractable harm — the willful affliction of injury, even the worst form, the killing of others, we see the importance of creating an environment that is aware of consequences and deals with them consciously, matter-of-factly.

Let me say why.

We are involved now with change. The need to help all, including ourselves, improve to the point that our choices are positive. We cannot have a positive democracy that accepts millions walking around with their heads hanging, ready concede to the worst angels of their nature.

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