Tagged: conformity

Our Freedom

We have cast off all the gods and their tyrannical ways, and hence all need of submission. Thus we define our freedom. And thus, having rejected the notion that there are gods, which is to say aspirations and ideals beyond our present limits, we happily submit to our own chains, rejecting all thought of anything beyond ourselves, which is to say beyond our...

Reasons Not to Drink

Here in Korea, drinking is not merely a commonplace activity but a deeply embedded ritualistic element of social life. And I work at a university, where the social ritual aspects of the “drinking culture” are exacerbated by the universal college-age confusion of new-found debauchery with burgeoning freedom. Hence, I am often met with skeptical double-takes and wide-eyed “Why nots?” when I inform students...

My Boycott, Part 2

In “My Boycott,” having explained my principles on the topic of boycotts in general, and in particular how and to what extent the boycott is a legitimate form of political expression, I then qualified the discussion somewhat with the following personal condition: I must note, however, that boycotting per se is not, and has never been, my cup of tea, primarily because I do not...

Regular Folks

Who are they? Why should I care about them? Why, above all, should I either aspire to be like them, or at least strive not to look too different from them? Their habits and pastimes annoy me. Their presuppositions and their conception of “common sense” are spoon-fed to them daily by a disreputable governess I rejected when I was thirteen. I dislike their songs, and...

Myths and Misunderstandings

We flatter those whom we describe as “burning the candle at both ends.” In truth, the people of whom we say this — or worse, who proudly think it of themselves — are typically burning the candle at neither end. They are merely gnawing away at their wax, anxiously chewing up their lives until they are reduced to wicks without fuel. Eventually, even...

On Not Preaching to the Reverted

I have nothing to say today about Roger Stone’s sentencing, or Donald Trump’s almost certain eventual presidential pardon of Stone, which he will issue for no reason other than because Stone is a Trump “strategist” (aka sycophant). Nor do I have any conjectures to make about Trump’s rehiring of a very young “loyalist” (aka bootlicking groupie) as head of the presidential personnel office,...

Social Life

“If I say what I really think, they won’t like me.” In other words, they don’t like you now, and they never will. “If I don’t make an effort to fit in, I will be alone.” If you have to make an effort to fit in, then you are already alone, and you will remain so. “I want them to accept me.” But...

Unorthodox Behavior and Courage

If you wish to live an unorthodox life, then you must accept that your life is unorthodox — and that it will be perceived as unorthodox. If you cannot accept being unlike others, and also being disliked by them, then it seems to me that you have only two practical choices: give up being unorthodox, or coerce others into “accepting” and “liking” your...