The Cure for Isolation, Conversation of the Heart
Notorious Murderer, the Question Mark Student
April 16, 2007, the worst shooting in American history occurred on the Virginia Tech campus and appalled the world. Seung-Hui Cho was the criminal who committed suicide after causing 61 casualties with his two guns in just around ten minutes. Since childhood, he was a loner who did not have interaction of the heart. Even after he entered college, he did not become associated with friends. He constructed his own world within. He did not respond to students who talked to him and there were no students at school who knew him in any depth. He was known as the ‘Question Mark Student’ because he put a question mark on the roster instead of his name. Although he lived in the dormitory where he shared a room with other students, Seung-Hui Cho only answered yes, no, or in a single word whenever others began a conversation. He was mostly alone. The severance from interaction ultimately drove him to become a notorious murderer.
Extremely Dangerous Life of a Loner
Expert analyses followed after the Seung-Hui Cho incident. The common cause was found to be his life as a loner. “His writings, his speech, and assessments from people around him all point to his life as a loner. It appears that he did not exchange his thoughts or feelings with people around him. He lived a unilateral life within his own world. A life like this brings a greater danger because others around do not take interest in them until a great problem occurs. People are all born with aggressive and sexual instincts that these instincts are refined through interaction with people and discipline to enable an individual to adapt to society. However, those who do not actively interact with people do not have the opportunity for their aggressive and destructive fantasies to be refined. So these dangerous fantasies are self-justified to further bring serious accidents.” (Professor Shin Eui Jee, Yonsei Medical University, Psychiatry)
Nightmare of Norway, Hate Massacre
On July 22, 2011, the worst terror in the history of Norway occurred at the government center of Norway’s capital, Oslo and the youth camp of the island of Utoya. With around 200 casualties, people fell in shock and horror. This incident later became known as a hate crime against the immigrants. The criminal, Anders Breivik (32) also lived within his own world with his heart completely isolated from others. His parents were divorced when he was two years old. He could not live with his father or receive the love of his mother. He indulged in games of violence, murder, and destruction. Animosity toward students from immigrant families grew as he saw them receive the love of parents he could not receive and the care of society. After the incident, in an interview with Norway’s TV2, his father said that he did not contact his son for the past 15 years and that he would never contact him from then on. This shows that he lived without any interaction of the heart.
Being Alone, the Worst Status in Humanity
When we look in the book of Genesis in the Bible, God looks at the first man, Adam, after the creation and says, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.” (Genesis 2:18) The worst status possible in humanity is being alone, so God gave Eve as his helper in order to prevent him from being alone. In its origin, the word help used in the Bible is a compound word of the two words meaning ‘helper’ and ‘suitable’. Adam for Eve and Eve for Adam was the most suitable helper for one other preventing them from being alone. God gives us a suitable helper to prevent us from being alone. But if people do not know the heart of God that provided a suitable helper, they would ignore people around them and live isolated and alone without having any conversation of the heart. And finally misery comes from being isolated. Pastor Ock Soo Park, knowing the seriousness of being alone offers the following solution to escape from being alone.
Source of Isolation
“People have to confront mentally burdensome occurrences in life because this is very good for mental health. If you avoid burdensome occurrences, your heart becomes isolated. Once you become isolated, you like being alone and playing computer games that do not give you any burden. Playing games offers excitement and satisfaction so you fall even deeper into it. When you fall in deeper, you further avoid burdensome occurrences. While enjoying computer games, you cannot feel humanity from others and you become less and less attracted to others. You do not want to talk to or meet people, and become isolated. There are those who become isolated because they don’t want to confront burdensome occurrences in life, but there are also those who become isolated because of their overconfidence. Those who think, ‘I am smart. I am well off’ then think ‘what do you know?’ whenever listening to others talk. They close their heart and live a life of isolation.” (Pastor Ock Soo Park, Who Are You Who Is Dragging Me? p.144,145)
Whirlpool-like Danger of Isolation
“People who lived in an isolated world for a long time cannot escape from their own thoughts. Just as even a good swimmer cannot swim out of a whirlpool, even though they think to themselves, ‘I shouldn’t do this!’, they cannot escape from their own thoughts. Advice and counsel from others have no effect because they do not accept them with their hearts, but only lightly. There are many people in the world that live isolated lives without the ability to escape from their own thoughts. You may play computer games but you must not fall too deeply into games that your heart becomes isolated. You may believe in your own abilities, but you must remember that once you ignore other people’s words and become severed from having conversations, you would become isolated. Whosoever it is, once they are isolated, they cannot escape from their own thoughts. I’ve seen many being dragged by their own thoughts that are not even true.” (Pastor Ock Soo Park, Who Are You Who Is Dragging Me? p.166)
“People must have conversation with other people. It is easy to notice right away that someone’s face is pretty or not pretty, but there is no one who could see the heart. ‘I was so happy and pleased to meet you today.’ ‘I am really sorry for yesterday.’ ‘I thought about it and I think I made you disappointed last time we met.’ Like this, the tool of language is needed to express the heart that we cannot see. Between husband and wife, between siblings, between friends, and between teacher and student, having conversation allows you the ability to know and feel another’s heart. ‘I see.’ ‘It must have been difficult for you.’ ‘I could see you were really pleased today.’ Once you know someone’s heart, you can understand and believe that person, and the hearts of the two will flow together. Some people say things they don’t mean. They don’t express exactly what is in their hearts, hide how they feel and speak only in words without sincerity. Words without the heart are the same as a lie. It is deceitful. Human beings are happy when they know each others’ heart and when their hearts flow naturally like electricity flows through electrical wires. (Pastor Ock Soo Park, Who Are You Who Is Dragging Me? p.154,155)