Francine - harvest
I Blame the Dutch mpoetess
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Um. So, I mentioned I'm not a redemptionist, right?
But I'm watching comments float past about redemption, redeemable, irredeemable.

Just wondering -- not patronising. Does everybody share the same definition of "redeemable?"

Because where I come from, it means "able to be brought (or brought back to) to a state of goodness/rightness/acceptedness." It doesn't mean "redeemed" implying that a person is currently good. It doesn't mean "forgiveable" implying that redemption is in the eyes of whoever's deciding whether the subject's past deeds are too evil to ever forgive.

It means, is there a chance that the person can, under any circumstances, become, through experience, through forgiveness, though conscious attempt to change or through an act of God -- an acceptable person, to the universe/God/Powers-that-be. Can he change, does whatever passes for God care enough about him to assist him with that change. Does he have the *potential* to be aware of wrongness, and regret having caused it, and wish not to cause it again?

To say that Spike is irredeemable based on any of his past actions misses the point of what redemption is. To say that Spike is irredeemable (on his own, though not by act-of-god) because he has shown no sign of remorse for any of his crimes, implying that he has no ability to feel such -- was a valid argument, though not a proven one -- until this episode.

Wherein he *did* show remorse. The question is not what the crime was, how forgivable any particular viewer finds it, whether it was worse than any of his past crimes, whether he meant to harm, whether he's seriously disturbed, even whether *Buffy* forgives him. It is, does he show the capacity for change? And yes, imho, he does. Did it take something awful for him to finally experience (but not yet understand) guilt and remorse? Yes. But *has* he experienced it? I think so. Think he still is experiencing it. Does his attempt to deny that make it less real? No.

I think many people are confusing -- or perhaps purposely replacing -- "redeemable" with "Forgiveable in my eyes" or with "already redeemed."

Worth precisely $0.02.


2002-05-09 12:34 am (UTC) (Link)

Right, but the point of this post was to clarify that peope are saying Spike's action in Seeing Red made him unredeemable. Not unredeemed, which imho, he is. Not unforgiveable in their eyes, which is everybody's right to their own opinion.

I wasn't speculating on whether Spike *will* be voluntarily redeemed. I don't think he will. My suspicion is that plotlines are moving him towards somebody telling him straight out "You can never be what she needs/what you want to be, as you are; will you allow us to change you?" And his only voluntary step being making that choice. But it's a theory, nothing more.

I don't think Spike has been trying to be good. At best, I think he's been trying to be neutral, and wavering back and forth over that line. I don't think he's trying to change -- far from it -- I think he's finding that he's changing involuntarily, and HATES it. BUt still, not really the point I was trying to make with this post. I wasn't talking about "Are the evilistas who say he won't be redeemed right or wrong." I was talking about how many people who are condemning his actions, quite rightly, seem to be using the word "irredeemable" to describe lem. An action is not irredeemable, by the way I understand the word, nor is a person irredeemable based upon any particular action(s). A person is only irredeemable if there is no capacity for change. Not *desire* for change, not *attempt* to change. BUt capacity for change.