Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Enough with the grouping already

The world is plagued by injustices and people who seek to gain by inflicting evil on others. To a certain extent we empower them by fearing them and even by becoming angry at them.

Masquerading as leaders, they are sad and sorry people whose goal seems to be to subtract value from the world. They don’t recognize the inherent worth in every human life — they see only masses to be manipulated and grouped and categorized by skin color or language or gender or habits. To these people every member of a group is expendable and interchangeable.

Defy them: Fight the training that says you can draw conclusions about someone based on the group. See the individual.

Look at you, for example: Others try to define you by the company you keep. But your world view does not march in lockstep with every other person in your group, or else you are a zombie.

You resent when someone accuses you of X because “you believe in Y and everyone who believes in Y also believes in X.” “But I don’t believe in X,” you object. Exactly. So why do you, yourself, lump individuals into groups?

You only have total access to one individual — the man or woman in the mirror — and you can easily see how many ways you are unique. Now, try to wrap your mind around the fact that there are 6 billion sovereign and unique human individuals on this vast planet, each of them equipped with his or her own world view to be explored and discovered. Dismiss them because they’re one of “those people” at your peril. You miss the opportunity to know and learn from some amazing individuals.

Try to shed the idea of “those people” altogether. She is this person. He is this other person. You are yet another individual, able to add value to the world. It’s individuals who accomplish great things.

You diminish the individual by making assumptions based on the group you perceive them to be in. “You’re just like all the others” is an insult because no one is just like all the others, nor are all the others just alike. Break the habit of grouping and discover the personhood of each person around you. Add value to your life by giving value to each person you meet.

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