An old general was known for being very stoic.
In their long life of discipline and adversity, these crafted a formerly wild and capricious young person into a well-honed and honorable adult human being.
Knowing this transition all too well, as they were retiring, they had the idea to mentor teenagers and young adults to give them the tools needed to make their adulthoods go as smooth as possible.
But being a career soldier, it was difficult for them to soften their techniques to a civilian audience.
They were a tough task master, but the teens really took the old general.
They gave a certain stability that they were otherwise not getting in their lives.
One Saturday night, the group decided to watch a movie.
It was an all-inclusive one that was largely a romantic comedy, but it had a lot of mature elements that made it an overall good movie instead of something silly and hacky.
At a particular sensitive part of the movie, a tear actually rolled down the general’s face.
Taking notice of this apparently surprising reaction, one of the teens took them to task.
“I thought that part of being an adult, and especially a soldier, was never to let your emotions get the best of you, and yet you are being affected by some movie.”
The general responded with impeccable clarity.
“I am a human being and with that, I have a wide range of feelings and emotions. I do not ask for them; they arise within me whenever they arise…
...are you telling me to be something other than human?”