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|High School/College Student|
Re: how do you define a dragon
I have found one, and only one definition that I've felt is both specific enough and vague enough to define dragons as a whole.
Quote:"So how do you define a dragon?" I was asked.
"Uh, er. Um." I did not answer. I didnt even attempt to answer, and swung the conversation elsewhere until such time as I could answer. Thats actually a question no ones ever asked me before. Unbelievable, I know. When conversation headed back in that direction I still didnt have an answer, but now I do.
"A dragon," I would have said, "is large and awesome and encompassing, so large it fits into the spaces between things and often is not noticed at all. It is dangerous, and aggressive. It breaths fire. It eats people. But it does not do this all or most of the time; it dwells on the potential of courses of action and that is, usually, enough.
Dragons know the truth about things. They frighten people. They frighten people by knowing the truth about things, and by not caring. Or by saying the truth you didnt want to hear, speaking fire at you and burning away the old things. You aren't afraid the dragon will eat you; you're afraid the dragon will notice you, judge you, and find you unworthy of their time. You're afraid the dragon will notice you at all.
The dragon's afraid you'll notice them. Often they would prefer not to be notice or bothered, but left alone so they may observe things from afar. They study things with a detached interest, often reluctant to interfere. They study things and detach them from the value system in a way that can be upsetting, for they do not place more inherent importance in people in preference to crickets. They sometimes fail to view themselves in the larger picture through a desire to be apart and alone and left alone, to be the impassive observer, in the scene but not an active element most of teh time. Unless a catalyst strikes. Actions may seem capricious, but often spring without apprarent warning from a firm base of prolonged thought. They are old. Very old, but they dont care much about this. Its years, things pass and change, but mostly stay the same within patterns.
Dragons know who they are and are so comfortable in this that they may seem arrogant, when really, they just know who and what they are and don't feel a need to seek external confirmation and reinforcement. They often operate outside the standard and accepted parameters of things because theyve judged the system and don't find it useful. Unuseful things (and people) are not respected, no matter how potent. This is part of a values-free philosophy...or rather, the nod to the idea that one should probably value their values rather than getting them as hand-me-downs.
Dragons are their own system. They are thus on the whole neither good nor evil, helpful nor uncaring, friendly or introverted. They are islands.
Dragons are small, medium, or large animals with a reptilian or mammalian or saurian or avian cast, who may or may not have wings, may or may not eat people, may or many not have an intrinsic alignment along an axis of good and evil, may or may not have an elemental affiliation, may or may not like knitting. Sometimes, dragons are lonely because of the people they successfully discourage, by being too honest about themselves and others, by never actually seeking contact, by being too big and arrogant and eating the neighbors dog.
Dragons are not aloof for the sake of being aloof; they are aloof for the sake of not stepping on people, but secretly, because theyre quite afraid of being stepped on. They want people to be without being interrupted, and want the same for themselves. Although...it is easier to observe and not be known. Not everyone can hurt them, but the right people can. The right an accurate people can hurt something big and intense because dragons are not perfect.
They are an archetype and a powerful one, but real dragons know that nothing is above the need to learn, nothing is above mistakes, and nothing is above the ability to be hurt. Dragons walk softly because of this. To hurt someone else is to possibly hurt yourself in the long-run. Consider it enlightened self-interest at the very least. Some of them are loud. Generally, dragons are not seen unless they wish to be seen. Some wish it more than others. Dragons like stuff. Some of them have manners; they always have manners but often tilted toward getting to the root of things and being honest. If they respect you. If not, all bets are off.
Dragons are prone to retreating into their own mental worlds, but this is not good for them. Dragons need friends too. They need new experiences, they need things to wake them up. They need people banging on gongs and reminding them to send the rain. Dragons are fierce and loyal and endless and eternal, and they are large, if not in shape than otherwise. Dragons are graceful and reachable and part of a mythos. Dragons are distant and cold and unreachable, for they encompass each a shard of the unknown, even to themselves.
Dragons all have something in common with other dragons, but they cannot say what it is. They dont know. They'll try to discuss it anyway, because they like to ponder, but they know that the thing they have in common with each other is visible only in small shared moments, and not visible in an attempt at a larger concept. Dragons have presence and inspire awe and fear and they have the ability to have no presence at all. They often walk silently. If you ask them to speak, they will. If you invite them, they will accept if they feel like it. And you might not like it, because they speak for the sake of whats being said, and may answer questions and take up offers that the host was unaware of making. If you ask them if they are godlike and perfect, the smart ones will say no, and the hearts of the unsmart ones will say no as well even if their minds say yes.
Dragons are a class of things, each unrelated to the next, but obviously part of a cohesive and sensible whole.
Dragons are about opposites and the containment thereof. They contain opposites by embodying dualities. They hold opposites within themselves comfortably, as part of themselves, and yet they exist. Perhaps this makes them grumpy at times, to balance so many things, to see that there may not be a one right answer but to understand the rightness of all the smaller answers.
Dragons understand two things: that change is necessary, and that preservation is necessary, and that nothing really ever changes.
Dragons challenge people. They dont eat them if they fail, but the feel sad and angry sometimes when too many of their challenges go unmet and unanswered. Asking questions is one modality of interacting with the world. They dont want to hurt people, even if their challenges and healing seem radical and aggressive and frightening. They want to share the one thing any dragon really treasures, which is information and ideas. They want to share it so that it might propagate, so that it will last and change and eventually come back to them. They want to watch the process but are sometimes afraid to be drawn into it. They sometimes are the process, at least by power of will, and do not exclude you from it but you would never think of sharing that space with them.
Dragons are vital and alive and grounded and ethereal and dualistic and whole and utterly touchable and enigmatic and frighteningly violent and gentle and perfect and flawed and aloof and arrogant and loving and charmingly shy and in need of friends.
That is what dragons are."
I would have learned a lot from life if I hadn't spent most of my time being educated.