Oh, how I love these hard hitting, into your face statements. And I love it more when I come up with those. I hope I did with this one at least. Anyways…
Conformity is the greatest crime you can do to yourself.
Haha… another one of those… Okay I promise. No more.
This isn’t some random, characteristically me, arrogant statement. It does mean a lot. Accepting things, people, or ideas without questioning them is restricting yourself - limiting your brain and imagination. “Accept people the way they are” is something which I have been told by many and many a times. We will talk about it later.
Conforming is basically accepting things and ideas as they are – no questions asked, no doubts entertained. Why follow the religious customs? Why believe in God? Why live with the norms that the society sets? Why study? Why do your assignments? Okay, the last one is simple – to pass the course. Hehe… Pardon the lame humour. Back to the serious stuff.
I believe that until you doubt and question any and every thing and find a convincing answer, an answer that convinces you completely, the idea that you accept or imbibe isn’t yours. It still is someone else’s idea. How can you be satisfied with something which isn’t yours? What have you added or taken away from an idea? Unless you doubt and question, you restrict yourself to all the knowledge and truth that there is in the world. What is your contribution to the world? To the spectrum of truth and ideas?
You may or may not believe in religion. Mostly it boils down to choice – either to follow it or not follow it. If you follow a certain religion, you dare not question its authority and authenticity. If you don’t follow any, it’s mostly because you hate them all equally. Why? You could say the customs and the rituals numb the mind. But have you bothered to ask “is religion in itself a bad concept?” “Do I need religion?”
People begin to doubt and question only when the statement hits them in the eye. Like if I say “Religion is one of the best tools to pass on the wisdom learnt over the years by generations. And yet I do not believe in it.” I could very well be bombarded with random questions, mostly hostile. I can well and truly defend myself in any argument over this, maybe even make a point. But let’s leave it at that. If you disagree you are welcome to put in your views. But make sure they are yours.
All I am saying is do not just accept something just because it is widely accepted as the norm. Think about it, and arrive at a conclusion based on your values and conscience. They are your best friends. Doubt is a great tool of evolution and use it for your personal growth as well.
Okay I do agree this post is sounding too much like J. Krishnamurti’s speeches and way too preachy. I do not want to tell anyone anything. Just that it beats me how can people be so conforming.
About “accepting people the way they are”. This is a debatable topic. The best I can say is that do accept them, love them, but if you see a flaw do make them known. Whether they acknowledge it or not is their choice but a man of wisdom will not mind you telling it. Rather they would appreciate it.
Conform to nothing but your wish. Till now whatever I have said hardly sounds anything like it. Rather it turned out mostly on conformity itself.
The original statement seemed more arrogant and stubborn than of any practical use. I have always lived by the law “Do what your heart tells you to.” Though it has not led me to any magical success, it somehow still appeals to me more than the conventional routes. At least this ways, you know why you do anything. You know the responsibility is just yours. And this knowledge is mostly motivation enough to see you through.
There is a flipside to this seemingly rebellious romantic mode. A rebel without cause or a rebel just for the sake of being one hardly serves any purpose. And this is where conformity and doubt play an important role. It is not that everything that is the norm is wrong. It’s not that the wisdom accumulated over the years is of no use. The idea then is to analyze every idea and notion, question the reason behind it, ask the “why” “how” and “when” before finally accepting it. Even if you come up with a different totally new or a modified version of the idea it is necessary to analyze it with the same above questions. And then the idea will be yours. Any idea without a reason will not hold for a long time and fizzle away anyways.
Basically what I am suggesting is a strong foundation for your thoughts – whatever they may be. If you choose to accept the existing ones or come up with totally new ideas, it should have a reason. At some point, you might have to accept things just as they are – like faith or belief. People say faith and belief do not have a reason. Somehow I have not been able to accept that. I mean I feel there is a reason behind everything. Just that we might not be able to find a reason for it, or just maybe that we are afraid of searching lest we lose faith once we have analyzed that. I mean, it happens that once you have analyzed everything you finally realize that it wasn’t as great as you believed and hence lose confidence in it. But it’s alright. You don’t need to overwork your brain over everything. Blind faith might help at times. Like “love” they say… Haha…
Imbibe ideas, come up with new ones but in the end Conform to nothing but your Wish…