a reply to: Astrocyte
I am with you on the changeability of mind- and behaviour. I want to make clear first that I personally feel quite similarly. My view is that all is
relative- including morality- and that we are perfectly capable of adapting to different things, different ideas.
I make that clear first because I will then play “devils advocate”… I can’t help but try to highlight the “other side” of the argument,
that I can see the reason in too.
I have heard extreme conservatives say things like “He is so liberal, it is scary”, or “if you stand for nothing, you’ll stand for
anything”, or “if you are too open minded, your brains will fall out.”
I think this expresses that somewhere, they too, are aware that they could wrap their heads around many different ideas, and get used to them. Only,
they see that as a threat, something that is “not good”.
Again, I jump back in my own shoes- I went from getting used to not wearing a top at beaches in Europe, to frequenting nude beaches, and have now even
gone to a swingers club twice. (since you approached the nudity taboos). I never thought I’d do any of that, before.
What I learned is that our imagination will always fill in the blanks of unknown with the most negative potentials it can come up with- that usually
turn out to be wrong.
But on the other hand, the people I know who feel such things, on further listening, I find their ultimate concern seems to be group solidarity.
Keeping people together. Let’s face it, moral rules, the collectively held ideas (that determine collective behaviour) are the cement of a group!
There is TRUTH to the fact that an individual has a higher chance at survival if part of a group- and the more that that group is solidly “glued”,
the chances increase. They are not wrong on that point.
These people are aware they could adapt, and the limitations they place on thought and behaviour through belief in universal morals or ethics, are
there to protect them from threat individually and as a group.
My other point is that from what I have seen, morals and ideas tend to be self- fulfilling prophecies. If you believe that your emotions or drives
would be capable of overcoming your conscious will in a certain situation, then that will tend to happen. Your mind will bend to the “rules” of
the reality it perceives.
If you try to change the rules one day, the mind will need to time to adapt to the new perspective and behaviors- it might continue with the old
reflexes for quite a while.
Perhaps you are right and the world is changing, we are opening our minds, but I suspect that if so, we will go through much conflict before it
If you believe that you shouldn’t do something because others would be overcome with the drive to invade you, then that geos both ways- if someone
else does that thing (opens their boundries in a specific way) then your mind will simply carry out the expected drives it believes you should, being
in the position of “other”.
I find that the subconscious doesn’t distinguish self and other very well- it grasps patterns, but the “I” can end up in any point of that
pattern- it remains the same.
I have found that believing people have destructive motives inside makes you have destructive motives inside then. What you imagine about others, you
create for yourself.
Change is sticky business, that needs to be undertaken in gradual steps, in some cases, and using an alert mind that spends the energy on discerning.
Nudism isn’t about running around with no regard for others around- the biggest surprise I got from adventuring into a swingers club? That the
people are MORE respectful than in a normal dance club! No strangers grinding up against you in the crowded dance floor, or “accidently” bumping
their arm into your breast repeatedly, or insisting on the pick up attempts even after you’ve made it clear you aren’t interested.
A simple no thank you means he gets the hell away and stays away - with no hard feelings.
Somehow the vulnerability gives rise to more respect, more consciousness of each others individual boundries and rights. I didn’t get into any
“action” of such a place- for the moment, that is too much for me. But that discovery I found fascinating and unexpected. Frankly, I think I would
rather go back into a club like that just to dance with my husband, then a “normal” club!
But let’s get back to the point that- this sort of thing is easier digested by the collective in the country I am in. Already, people are more used
to nudity, and swingers don’t hide the fact that they are swingers- it is a lifestyle choice that may not be main stream, but people know it is an
Nobody here notices a woman topless on a normal beach, but you should see how the American people we bring there react- just as they expected- unable
to not look, and the men having to stay laying on their stomach.
But I think also- people enjoy the power of mystery. The experience of transgressing taboos is exciting. Taboo is sometimes worth creating just for
The release of repressed energy is a rush- I don't think many people would admit it even to themselves, but our body adores overtaking the will from
time to time as much as it loves feeling "contained", controlled, and protected by it the rest of the time.
If one wants to champion our individual rights to experience, they'd have to respect that one as well- that people have the right to creating the
"conserved energy" experience as well!
(I apologize for the length, redundancy, and perhaps pedantic tone of my post- I work out my reflections as I go along, and lack the necessary
traditional education to call upon terminology or phrases which can vehicle ideas more efficiently . I am probably explaining things to myself more
than anyone else...)
edit on 19-7-2014 by Bluesma because: (no reason given)