- Mental Health»
Individualism Is a Great Thing
We are social animals. To survive all these millennia, we have had to learn how to stick to packs and small groups. Had it not been for the collective thinking of surviving and living in a group we would have surely died long ago.
We simply do not have the strength, speed, and ferocity to combat against the elements or the animals by ourselves.
However, evolution has given us a great ability to overcome these harsh environments and enemies. We have now evolved and have been given the minds to be able to understand the world around us.
It is this mindset, this level of evolution that has made us the dominant species on this planet. But sadly as much as we have evolved there are still trace semblance of our primitive origins.
For many of us, we have learned to understand the world around us but have not learned to understand the world within us.
“The first duty of a man is to think for himself” ― José Martí
The philosophical concept of individualism is an idea that I believe needs to greatly be fostered in many individuals around the world. Collectivism is very much a primitive way of living.
It strips people of their individuality and turns everyone into ciphers. People no longer can take responsibility for their action. This is not hyperbole. There is something called "mob mentality, " and this is something that you get with people who think with the collective mindset.
Like a flock of sheep who all follow the head sheep, individuals who have the collective mindset do not think for themselves but think with the group, and this is very scary.
In perhaps one of the most infamous psychological experiments to have ever been conducted which was called the Milgram Experiment, the investigation showed how easy it is to get people to do what they are told.
A guy simply dresses up as an instructor, a person of authority, and people (a disconcerting majority) blindly followed what they were told to do. The experiment was conducted to understand why so many Germans were okay with killing so many Jewish people.
“You have to change your thinking if you desire to have a future different from your present.” ― Germany Kent
Individualism is very important for a society to progress. Although collectivism has its benefits, such as keeping some level of peace, individualism helps to move society towards a much more progressive society.
Different thoughts and ideas are what create advance cultures. Different ways of seeing the world can be conflicting, but they can also be very uplifting and changing for the better.
However, the key benefit about Individualism is the idea that a person sees another person as another human being. This is something that you do not get in individualism. You see other people as objects or extension of yourself.
Collectivism is a strong enemy towards progressivism when regarding politics and social issues. The power that resides in being ourselves should not be overlooked.
There has never been someone like us before, and there will never be someone like us again. Embrace the idea of individualism and let go of the chains of collectivism. The greatest regret on many people's deathbed is "not being true to who they were" but pretending to be someone else. Pretending to be who everyone else was.