Sunday, 14 August 2011

Freedom, ideas and crowds

I've started a new project: I collect stories of natural human kindness as opposed to idea-infused cruelty. I would appreciate any suggestions. Initially the idea appeared when an Orthodox Christian lady said to me that she is absolutely sure that non-Christians are incapable of good deeds. She also believed that non-christian souls won't be saved and at the same time boasted about her "friendship" with pagans. All this seemed so perverted to me yet so typical of fundamentalism (which is the core of any viable religion) - and it eventually helped me to say final goodbye to religion. Another thing was that many religious people commenting my posts in both languages seemed either to judge me most of the time or even tell me what I must think and do. None of my true friends would ever done something like this, be so disrespectful of my freedom.

In the times of riots in Britain, once in the evening, I went to the shops here in Newtown and seen an interesting picture. Four teenagers, 2 girls, 2 boys, white and looking well of, were obviously ready for trouble. Empty yet aggressive faces, hoodies on, throwing traffic cones around. But in the small town like his there just wasn't enough of them. It is illustrating to me the fact that people feeling themselves as a part of a crowd are losing their normal judgements, "going mad". Obviously undeveloped brains are more ready for this sort of behaviour.

Both ideas and crowds (mad or organized) can make people cruel against their normal nature. We are born compassionate. It's a social animal's instinct. Even hungry rats can't eat if they see other rats suffer (I thing this is from the book "Wild Justice" if I'm not mistaken). I remember reading a bit of Nazi official's diary (in the book "What Is Good?"). He was organizing death camps or something like this but when he went to inspect what he's done he felt terrified, he couldn't bear that. Yet he didn't repent: the Nazi idea and complacence to the authorities were stronger.

I thing the idea that people are born sinners, bad, cruel, homo homini lupus est, etc. leeds to a distorted world view. Being good is more about both going to you "roots" (natural empathy) and thinking free with a clear independent mind unclouded by invasive ideas (mems).

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