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In defense of the human individual

The new global tinderbox - NationofChange

Whereas it’s now very late within the life cycle of homo sapiens, with extinction now on account of consign us to Earth’s fossil report – see ‘Will people be extinct by 2026?’ – I want to make a belated pitch for the significance of the human particular person and why nurturing every particular person’s uniqueness is so necessary even whether it is now in all probability too late.

‘Why are you writing about this?’ you may ask, including that many individuals settle for that every considered one of us is exclusive, necessary and deserves the alternatives and help essential to stay a satisfying life in line with our personal tradition and decisions. It’s simply the sexists, racists, bigots (spiritual and in any other case), higher class, governments, firms, members of the worldwide elite, and another classes of individuals, in addition to many organizations, notably these which are violent, that don’t.

Properly, I want that this was true. However I’m troubled by the overwhelming proof that means it isn’t. In truth, from my very own observations and investigations, I see nearly no proof that anybody actually works to actively nurture the individuality of particular person human beings. The entire objective of socialization is to terrorize the kid into surrendering their distinctive individuality in order that they grow to be like everybody else.

In fact, you may counter my declare by noting that socialization is important to make the kid match into their society however as soon as they’ve accomplished so, they will make sure decisions of their very own. This notably applies as soon as the person is an adolescent or an grownup when, for instance, they will select their very own faculty topics (from the vary provided), their work (from the employment choices out there), determine for whom they may vote to control them (from a slender choice of people and political events) in the event that they stay in a ‘democracy’ and, in the event that they work exhausting sufficient at socially-approved employment and thereby accumulate sufficient wealth whereas dwelling in a comparatively rich industrial society, they will additionally select the meals, clothes, housing, leisure and journey choices they may eat.

For sure, to youngsters we don’t even supply this parody of ‘freedom’ whether or not they reside in an impoverished nation the place many of those alternatives are usually not obtainable or even when they stay in a rich industrialized one. Beneath the endless menace of violence (often labeled ‘punishment’ to obscure from ourselves that we’re utilizing violence) by mother and father, academics, spiritual figures and adults usually, youngsters are coerced into doing what we consider is of their ‘greatest pursuits’ as we outline them. We don’t take heed to youngsters in order that they will inform us what they want in an effort to journey their very own distinctive life journey.

You may argue that youngsters should not have this capability to inform us what they want. However this isn’t my expertise and I’m wondering whether it is actually yours. Most mother and father are able to complain concerning the monumental effort (that’s, violence) it takes ‘to coach a toddler to do as they’re advised’; that’s, to obey the orders of all adults in all contexts.

However as a result of every grownup, once they have been a toddler, was terrorized into unconsciously accepting the significance of obedience, solely the rarest particular person ever reaches some extent in life the place they’re able to consciously mirror on their very own childhood and ask elementary questions on it. Questions akin to these: ‘Why do I consider that obedience is so essential? And is it?’, ‘Is terrorizing a toddler into obedience actually one of the simplest ways to boost a toddler?’ and ‘What would occur if I listened to a toddler and allow them to information me on the help they should grow to be their very own distinctive Self?’

Tragically, it’s that the majority hallowed of establishments – faculty – which I name ‘jail for youngsters’ the place a lot of the injury is completed. Designed to terrorize youngsters into obedience and conformity on the idea that ‘one measurement matches all’, faculty destroys the bodily, sensory, mental and emotional capacities of youngsters churning out people with near-zero capability to really feel something profound, assume creatively and behave powerfully with integrity.

That’s, we take the uniquely gifted child in the intervening time of delivery and switch them into a person who has a number of lifetime disabilities, bodily, sensorily, intellectually and emotionally. For additional info and a fuller rationalization with hyperlinks to background documentation, see ‘Do We Need Faculty or Schooling?’

In fact, this fits governments and people firms who need huge portions of low cost labor to work as troopers, in a manufacturing unit or at one of many different harmful and/or meaningless jobs that qualify as ‘employment’ within the trendy financial system. However earlier than you conclude that it is just wworking-classemployment that’s on this class, solely the rarest of execs, in any business, has the capability to really feel deeply, assume genuinely creatively (as distinct from inside the slender parameters of their career) and to behave powerfully with integrity. Briefly, those that work Eight-5, 5 days (or extra) every week, doing what others educated them to do at College or elsewhere, are merely being higher rewarded for surrendering their soul as a toddler.

However, sadly, it isn’t faculty that does probably the most injury. All youngsters inside the childhood residence expertise in depth ‘invisible’ and ‘completely invisible’ violence, and lots of expertise ‘seen’ violence as nicely. These are comprehensively defined in ‘Why Violence?’ and ‘Fearless Psychology and Fearful Psychology: Rules and Apply’.

The inevitable consequence of this violence is that the kid suppresses their consciousness of the emotions that may have guided them to behave most functionally in each circumstance of their life (together with about whether or not or to not attend faculty). Furthermore, a consequence of suppressing their consciousness of those emotions is that the kid is left with an (unconscious) legacy of worry, self hatred and powerlessness, exactly as a result of they’ve been terrorized into suppressing their very own Self-will and obeying the desire of one other.

However as a result of these emotions of worry, self hatred and powerlessness are very disagreeable to really feel, and the kid has by no means been given the chance and help to give attention to feeling them, the kid will unconsciously study to venture their worry, self hatred and powerlessness as worry of, hatred for and a want to train management over people inside ‘legitimized sufferer teams’. For temporary explanations of those phenomena particularly contexts see, for instance, ‘Islamophobia: Why are So Many Individuals So Frightened?’, ‘Why are all these Racists so Terrified?’, ‘Understanding Self-Hatred in World Affairs’ and ‘Why Are Most Human Beings So Powerless?’

So by the point the kid is pressured to attend faculty – no free decisions about this, you might have famous, with homeschooling (to an externally-imposed syllabus) solely marginally much less violent – they’ve already been terrorized into submission, doing what they’ve discovered is least terrifying and, hopefully, additionally positive factors them approval by adults.

Thus, nearly all youngsters are completely powerless to understand the world clearly, analyze it, make clever and ethical decisions about the way to reply, and to then behave powerfully in doing so. And a decade, kind of, of faculty makes positive that solely the rarest of people survives to realize some model of their evolutionary potential, which required a nurturing, not terrifying, social surroundings.

Briefly, this individual shouldn’t be a person with an unshakable sense of their very own self-worth who, in consequence, inherently values the price of all others. They’re merely an individual who has been terrorized into conformity with a set of localized norms by the numerous adults of their life.

At its worst, the result is an grownup who’s so devoid of a Self that they determine with different equally and equally broken people after which violently assault individuals in ‘legitimized sufferer teams’. See, for instance, ‘What’s Era Id?’ This particular person could be a outstanding political chief who wages struggle towards different nationwide teams which might be ‘totally different’, it could be a company government who exploits individuals in different elements of the world who’re ‘totally different’ or it may be an ‘atypical’ one that hurls abuse at somebody of their neighborhood who’s ‘totally different’.

However the most typical end result is those that are just too scared and powerless to reply meaningfully to the violence in our world and notably the extinction-threatening assault on Earth’s biosphere.

And so, at this level in human historical past, it’s terribly troublesome to get the standard human being to focus their consideration on actuality (together with army, financial and ecological actuality), astutely observe the phenomena introduced, analyze the proof in relation to it, devise (or hunt down) a considerate technique to resolve any drawback or battle that has arisen with out resorting to violence, and to then behave appropriately, powerfully and with integrity in response.

Therefore, as an alternative of nurturing emotionally and intellectually resourceful and resilient people who’re engaged with the world and able to figuring out and grappling powerfully with issues and conflicts early in order that they don’t spiral uncontrolled, we at the moment are confronted with a last-ditch struggle to avert our personal extinction with most individuals nonetheless dwelling within the delusion that we now have an ‘finish of century’ timeframe. See ‘Human Extinction by 2026? A Final Ditch Technique to Battle for Human Survival’. How clever is that?

So can we get out of this mess?

I don’t know and, frankly, I doubt it. However if you wish to be a part of the trouble to attempt, contemplate making ‘My Promise to Youngsters’, which notably requires the capability to pay attention deeply to youngsters – see ‘Nisteling: The Artwork of Deep Listening’ – in order that we begin to nurture every youngster to turn out to be the terribly highly effective particular person that’s constructed into their genetic potential.

And we don’t should accept simply enhancing how we relate to youngsters. We will enhance our personal performance and entry our conscience and braveness too. How? See ‘Placing Emotions First’.

In case you are following the proof in relation to the approaching extinction of human beings – see articles above – somewhat than the rubbish revealed within the company media, and need to reply powerfully, contemplate becoming a member of these collaborating in ‘The Flame Tree Undertaking to Save Life on Earth’.

You may also wish to signal the web pledge of ‘The Individuals’s Constitution to Create a Nonviolent World’ and/or take part in a strategically-focused nonviolent marketing campaign on an important difficulty associated to conserving the biosphere. See Nonviolent Marketing campaign Technique.

So how necessary is the human particular person? Within the context of life on Earth on the present time, I merely reply with ‘What’s extra necessary?’

We will do nothing about our destiny if we don’t worth, above all else, the human particular person and their potential. Together with our personal. This potential is troublesome to nurture; it’s simply destroyed.

However, as Mohandas Okay. Gandhi as soon as noticed in considered one of his many memorable strains: ‘The person is the one supreme consideration.’

And keep in mind, if the problem to honour the human particular person and to behave powerfully your self (as very important elements of our technique to avert human extinction) sounds daunting, Gandhi additionally famous that ‘No matter you do could seem insignificant to you, however it’s most essential that you simply do it.’

In essence, the inspiration of any technique for human survival have to be the highly effective particular person. It’s this particular person who will mobilize a few of these round them just by making their very own life-enhancing behavioural decisions consciously and courageously.

Robert J. Burrowes has a lifetime dedication to understanding and ending human violence. He has executed in depth analysis since 1966 in an effort to know why human beings are violent and has been a nonviolent activist since 1981. He’s the writer of ‘Why Violence?’ His e-mail handle is [email protected] and his web site is at

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