Saturday, October 24, 2020

KV - Toxic Individualism

Individualism vs Colectivism, is there a correct balance? 

Carl Jung was said to have had scintillating intelligence, but he found the works of Hegel impenetrable, despite this, Professor Sean Kelly found a great deal of similarly between their works when it came to self-consciousness (ego-consciousness / self-awareness) and individualism, where both believed mankind was further moving towards increased self-awareness, or self-consciousness as Jung and Hegel would described it. The word individual comes from the word indivisible, meaning we cannot be split any further. The collective has been divided into individual identities. 

Primitive man projected his soul onto the universe, so the trees, the sky, the Sun, the weather, the stars, ect, all had spirits. Man's primitive consciousness was hardly separated from his surroundings, said Hegel and Jung. 

Both Hegel and Jung saw the West as the pinnacle of civilisation, along with it's high level of individual self-consciousness. In Rome, they said, only the emperor was an individual and everyone else would just see themselves as part of the group, and it was the same in China and all other third-world countries, they added. They were more primitive collective societies. 

Christianity greatly increased the sense of individualism and self-consciousness, both Jung and Hegel believed. God knew every hair on your body, and there was a banquet in heaven when the lost sheep was found, so every individual person was very important to God.

The Bible eventually became translated into German, and then other languages, like English, so now every person could read the Bible, which led on to the Protestant reformation. People now had a much closer, more personal, individual relationship with God. 

Protestant Christianity produced Calvinism, which said that hard work and success signified that God had chosen you to go to heaven. And so the Calvinists - being puritans - did not spend their money on worldly possessions, but instead ploughed all their profits back into their businesses to grow them, and in this way they felt that they had been chosen. Modern capitalism was then born.

At that period in time most people were God-fearing Christians, and so for the first time in history it became possible for people to leave their money in an institution, like putting an investment into a company, and then be able to go back the next day to find their money was still there. This meant that banks and the stock market now became possible, which meant that western civilisation could make spectacular advancements, eventually leading to the industrial Revolution, much of which was funded by shares. This new Western sense of individualism eventually led to democracy where every person got a vote. 

But were Carl Jung and Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel both unwittingly intoxicated by Western hubris? They believed that Western civilisations were the most advanced, and that our self-consciousness (as individualism) was more heightened than those of people in the East, but could this belief in the absolute importance of the individual over the collective now be holding us back?

Neoliberalism, the Ayn Rand mentality, the extreme right, the populist alt-left, libertarianism, etc, all seem to be examples of corrosive individualism. 

Many people in the West refuse to wear masks, or practice social distancing, despite there being a serious pandemic going on which could kill millions. They say the economy needs to be saved first, which would save more lives in the long run, but they also object to wearing masks which could save the economy as well as lives, and so their concern does not seem to be all that genuine. It appears that they want to carry on the way they have always done, with little regard for anyone else, because they believe that coronavirus is harmless to them. 

The East was once considered less advanced than the West, but I'm beginning to believe that academics like Carl Jung and Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel may have got it wrong. The East in many ways seems to be more cultured and civilised compared to some Western countries, and despite our emphasis on the value of the individual, the East seems to place far more value on an individual's life. 

In the video below Chinese children are being shown how to use public transport. There is little girl with a walking stick, but look at the little boy.

The libertarians might find this disturbing as it looks like social conditioning to produce a conformist, compliant society. But to me, it's culture, refinement, and civilisation. 


Peter Pan said...

Pol Pot knew the answer to that one. Which is, the ends justify the means.

Andrew Anderson said...

all seem to be examples of corrosive individualism. kv

My bet is that the corrupt banking model will corrode China as it has corroded the West.

It might take a decade or two but the CCP will eventually succumb to a monster they thought they could control.

Peter Pan said...

If it weren't for bankers and people who refuse to wear masks, Earth would be a paradise.

S400 said...

Khmers was propped up by the U.S.
Even ten years after the knowledge of systematic mass murders the US supported them.Pol Pot and the Khmers only called themselves Communists when thy wanted support from China. They saw and called themselves revolutionary.

S400 said...

A land reform where everyone get equally good land (we all now that all land is equally good) and stack of dollars each week will solve everything.

Matt Franko said...

No no... if everybody didn’t think were “out of money!” THEN everybody would be sitting in circles singing kumbaya....

Andrew Anderson said...

If it weren't for bankers ... Peter Pan

Actually, the Bible permits usury (Deuteronomy 23:19-20) but only from foreigners - to subjugate them.

But what we have is government privileges for usurers so they can subjugate their own fellow citizens.

Is it any wonder then that we have so much needless division and injustice?

Peter Pan said...

This cannot be achieved through individual initiative, thus it requires a collective effort.

Peter Pan said...

This is not usury:

Andrew Anderson said...

The US is still a largely Christian nation so some hope of repentance per the Bible still exists.

As for "Year_Zero", there's a horrific example of mere human wisdom.

Kaivey said...

I do fear it will all go wrong, because when we look at history it isn't great. But I have my fingers crossed.

Peter Pan said...

It will all go wrong, hopefully not in a neighbourhood near you.

Matt Franko said...

“ The Bible eventually became translated into English,”

I think it was German actually...

Today is actually Reformation Sunday...

“Money!” was involved:

“On 31 October 1517, Martin Luther wrote to Albrecht, Archbishop of Mainz and Magdeburg, protesting against the sale of indulgences. He enclosed in his letter a copy of his "Disputation of Martin Luther on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences", which came to be known as the Ninety-five Theses.[2] Hans Hillerbrand writes that Luther had no intention of confronting the church, but saw his disputation as a scholarly objection to church practices, and the tone of the writing is accordingly "searching, rather than doctrinaire."[3] Hillerbrand writes that there is nevertheless an undercurrent of challenge in several of the theses, particularly in Thesis 86, which asks: "Why does the pope, whose wealth today is greater than the wealth of the richest Crassus, build the basilica of St. Peter with the money of poor believers rather than with his own money?"[3]“

“OUT OF MONEY!” caused the whole thing..,,

Peter Pan said...

Pope needs that money for bribing Saint Peter.

Andrew Anderson said...

Jizya has also been understood by some as a badge or state of humiliation of the non-Muslims in a Muslim state for not converting to Islam, ... from

What's humiliating about being taxed?

But what's really humiliating is having to borrow or at least it would be if not for government privileges for private credit creation which make "borrowing*" a near necessity for most people.

However, those who "borrow*" for the purpose of exploitation should be ashamed and concerned for their own future blessing or lack thereof.

*Actually, using what is, in essence due to government privilege for private credit creation, the PUBLIC'S (including the poor's) credit but for private gain.

Calgacus said...

The Bible eventually became translated into German, and then other languages, like English, so now every person could read the Bible, which led on to the Protestant reformation.

No, it was translated into (Middle) English first, much earlier than any other modern language. Wycliffe Bible. Some speculate that this helped foster the distinctive empiricist, Baconian, nominalist nullius in verba general stance of English thought, since anyone could read the Bible for themselves. Probably has some truth to it.