Tormented Souls

If you’re from New York, then you may be more familiar with individuals who bare their souls than with those who do not. Among those who do not, a small yet significant subclass are tormented souls.

Tormented souls do not speak but instead reveal their conflicted existence. How? 1. By giving off the impression that things are all right or at least good enough when, to the observant listener, it is manifestly clear that things are not all right or good enough. 2. By alluding to, not speaking directly about, what matters, where what matters is undeniably painful. 3. And thus by revealing that they are suffering what is not close to be resolved while at the same time deluding themselves into believing that whatever it is is nothing after all.

Thereby do tormented souls make themselves out, in the eyes of others, to be mysteries. Thereby too do they isolate themselves by withholding intimacy from others and, more poignantly so, by foreclosing the possibility of becoming more intimate with themselves.

Among the many forms of self-deception such as sociopathy, bullshitting, and overoptimism, tormented souls occupy a rather unique position. Whatever it is that they might look into is, they presume, just too scary. Because of this, the torment continues.