Monday, 19 March 2012

Doing Your Own Thing

I fear that we too much like doing own thing.  It is true that we all have a contribution to make, and that contribution is important but, too often, we are insufficiently engaged with recognising the value of community and how that is enhanced when individuals contribute to, and not against, the community.  I have been reading Christopher Jamison's book Finding Sanctuary (Phoenix, 2006) - and really like a comment he makes on this - p. 121 - "Individualism is simply doing your own thing in your own way and blanking out the other people.  Individuality involves bringing your particular contribution to bear on the life of the community, even if that is a difficult contribution for others to accept; for example, a criticism."  We all have a contribution to make, but we all need to receive the contributions of all the others.


Steve Hayes said...

Yes and no... Sometimes people want to do their own thing simply as an ego trip, but sometimes they go further and want other people to do their thing too. Then, perhaps one needs to resist. Was it Dostoevsky who said "Talk nonsense, but talk your own nonsense. It is better to go wrong in your way than to go right in someboy else's"?

Paul said...

Steve, thanks for your comment. Of course what is key is balance. Doing your own damaging thing is not going to be good.