Human beings were never meant to cycle through each day as the hamster does in his wheel. We differ from other living beings in our need for daily meaning and life purpose. At a loss due to social constraints and economic demands, we attempt to fill what some would label a “spiritual void” with rituals and trends. Rituals aren’t inherently dysfunctional – we need them to maintain good self-care. The problem lies in our attachments to rituals that don’t serve a useful purpose. I plan to discuss specifics in further detail in upcoming posts.
Trends are a bit more tricky to maneuver for most of us. We want to be popular, to be relevant, and to be cultured. Yet, we are easily manipulated by the media, politicians, and the like. I believe it is important that we examine each trend from every angle before jumping onboard as it recklessly careens throughout the nation as would an out-of-control roller coaster. Before we are pressured into saving face after clinging to a foolhardy or worse, hurtful and oppressive fad. This is more than what the right has tabbed “political correctness”; in fact, it is the hallmark of a civil society.
The next time you are tempted to follow any social trend, please think about the decision you are making, particularly if it is a subconscious one that you haven’t thought much about. Before you decide, think. Consider your options, your influences, and most of all – your individuality. In a free society, each of us has the right to self-determination, which means we are free to choose our own paths in life. Following the crowd restrains us from doing so.