Why do we have such a problem with being alone? by Sara Maitland, The School of Life
But there is a problem, a serious cultural problem, about solitude. Being alone in our present society raises an important question about identity and wellbeing. In the first place, and rather urgently, the question needs to be asked. And then – possibly, tentatively, over a longer period of time – we need to try to answer it.
The question itself is a little slippery but it looks something like this: how have we arrived, in the relatively prosperous developed world at least, at a cultural moment that values autonomy, personal freedom, fulfilment and human rights, and, above all, individualism, more highly than ever before, while at the same time those who are autonomous, free and self-fulfilling are terrified of being alone with themselves?
We apparently believe that we own our bodies and should be allowed to do with them more or less anything we choose, from euthanasia to a boob job, but we do not want to be on our own with these precious possessions. We live in a society that sees high self-esteem as a proof of wellbeing, but we do not want to be intimate with this admirable and desirable person.
We see moral and social conventions as inhibitions on our personal freedoms, and yet we are frightened of anyone who goes away from the crowd and develops “eccentric” habits.
We believe that everyone has a singular personal “voice” and is, moreover, unquestionably creative, but we treat with dark suspicion anyone who uses one of the most clearly established methods of developing that creativity – solitude. We think we are unique, special and deserving of happiness, but we are terrified of being alone.
We declare that personal freedom and autonomy is both a right and good, but we think anyone who exercises that freedom autonomously is “sad, mad or bad”. Or all three at once.
Poe’s Law: That moment when a Fox Business commentator sounds just like a Disney villain.
tbh ive been waiting all year to reblog this
I made a hennery with a green roof, build out of nearly 100% reused materials :)
Only the chickens are new ^_^
“When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy’. They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life.”John Lennon (via dissapolnted)