Reappropriation of Judgemental Terms

Outside a paradigm of categorical good and bad, there are many commonly used words that have no meaning[1]. Some thought systems shun these judgemental words, but instead I reuse them with new, kinder meanings[2] for humorous effect:

word meaning example usage[3]
evil ingenious/cunning Don't worry, I have an evil plan
good something I like Fringe (TV series) is SO GOOD
better preferred Steven Universe is better than Adventure Time
best favourite Person of Interest is one of the best TV shows ever made
should want to for my purposes I should wash up = for my purposes, I want to wash up
must intend to for my purposes I must finish writing this article
right helpful That idea is right
wrong unhelpful That idea is wrong
pervert (noun) someone who is free (at least internally) of the restrictions imposed by normative sexuality Most of my friends are perverts
pervert (verb) to liberate a person or object from the restrictions of normative sexuality I'm gently perverting my new partner
the devil's work not designed in a way that meets my current need Notepads are the devil's work
difficult a seemingly external obstacle I haven't forgiven Reading the Text of A Course In Miracles is difficult = I haven't forgiven the Text of A Course In Miracles
hate haven't forgiven[4] I haven't forgiven you
sin joyous activity[5] forgive me father for I have engaged in joyous activity
guilty sinner wholely innocent child of God I'll race you, last one there's a guilty sinner
victim new friend/acquaintance I'll definitely try this on my next victim
I love you[6] I can see your innocence
blame am grateful to I blame you for introducing me to Planetes

Having been in this habit of repurposing words for over a decade, I often forget that I've done this, and so people think I'm judging when I'm not.

ACIM context: Using these words with kinder meanings, is my way of forgiving the words. If you can't hear these words without reacting, then you haven't forgiven.

meta comment

I'm very proud of this post, and I may refer to it often. Now I can write in a way that's more natural to me: outrageously claiming that things are the best.
It may take a while for me to identify all the words I've changed the meaning of in this way. I'll probably never find them all. But I can just keep adding to this page when I notice them.
The table doesn't really work on mobile.

  1. at least, none that I would ever use ↩︎

  2. In A Course In Miracles Jesus does something similar: he takes all the hateful words from Christianity and redefines them to suit his purposes. ↩︎

  3. I'm not being totally consistent with whether I use the word or the meaning in this column, but hopefully you can follow ↩︎

  4. Question: Would you then say that you hate your mum and dad, i.e. you haven't forgiven them? Or perhaps you have?
    Answer: I have largely forgiven my mum, so no I don't hate her. I haven't forgiven my dad yet, so I hate him. ↩︎

  5. Question: Why are joyous activities sinful?
    Answer: Joyous activities aren't sinful. There is no sin.
    Activities that Catholics would call "sinful" are often joyous, so why not call joyous activities "sinful".
    The meaning that you have for "sin" doesn't exist in my mental framework except as an unhelpful and untrue idea. ↩︎

  6. the usual usage is "your ego is special to my ego" ↩︎

Freyr LePage

autistic, nonbinary, white, middle class

United Kingdom