I had been living in a large house with my mother and two other children which she had. When my grandfather came to visit us one day, the three of us began talking. My mother had recently been having some financial difficulties and my grandfather began saying it was my duty to provide for my mother. I flatly told him that providing for her wasn't my duty. Although I had recently been helping out my mother, I wanted it to be perfectly understood that I had no duty to assist her. I said, "It is not my duty to support her."
My mother spoke up and agreed with me. She told my grandfather that I was 27 years old and that I no longer had a duty to take care of her or her children.
My mother had been working as a secretary in one of my competitor's law office, but recently she had completely taken over that other law office and she was now trying to run the office herself. I considered the possibility of my hiring her to work in my law office and thereby possibly solving some of her financial problems. I knew she didn't speak Spanish, however, and I needed someone who spoke Spanish.
I walked into my bedroom. I had a small movie projector which I sat down on the floor on one side of the bed. I aimed the projector across the bed to the opposite wall. A black and white old-time movie began and an image of a man appeared on the wall. His image was just about my height and he seemed to be standing in front of some students in a classroom.
The man was named Brandeis and I recognized him as a Supreme Court Justice from the 1930s. Addressing the image of the man, I began arguing a case on which I was working. Delving into some detail about the case, I was rather impressed with the complexity of the case. Apparently the case was on appeal to a federal circuit court.
I looked at the image of the man on the screen before me and I said, "You are wrong in this case."
I knew the man had opposed me on the case which dealt with an issue of immigration. The man was opposed to the immigration of my client. I had once admired the man, but I now felt as if he were morally wrong about his stance on this case. Since I had never fully trusted the man, I therefore wasn't really disappointed in him.
As I continued talking about the case I felt rather proud of myself for having carried it to such a point and being able to challenge the rather formidable professor in such a worthy cause. I was certain I was right, but I thought the professor was unbendable in his position and I had only the merest scintilla of hope that he would change.
The picture on the wall changed and another man appeared. He was a short man and his features and the way he dressed reminded me of Charlie Chaplin. He likewise was apparently a judge. He certainly didn't seem as dignified as the first man and he looked a bit eccentric. But I realized he agreed with my version of the case and I felt a great deal of respect for him. The picture of the first man returned and I continued practicing my argument.
I felt good about practicing the way I was doing. I knew I had reached a point when it was important to be doing what I was doing. I wondered if my mother could hear me from the other room. If it bothered her she would just have to accept it. I no longer felt diffident about what I was doing. I thought she would probably end up being proud of me.
I moved the projector a little to see if I could throw a better picture on the wall. The picture seemed to be somewhat cut off at the bottom by the bed the way it was. But when I moved the projector the whole image became too light to see. So I moved it back the way it was. It was a very good picture even though it looked as if it would be better if the bed weren't in the way.
If the desire to follow Oedipus example and have sex with one's mother is universal (as postulated by Sigmund Freud), then no man is initially guilty of sin by having that desire.
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