“To understand our civilisation, one must appreciate that the extended order resulted not from human design or intention but spontaneously: it arose from unintentionally conforming to certain traditional and largely moral practices, many of which men tend to dislike, whose significance they usually fail to understand, whose validity they cannot prove, and which have nonetheless fairly rapidly spread by means of an evolutionary selection — the comparative increase of population and wealth — of those groups that happened to follow them. The unwitting, reluctant, even painful adoption of these practices kept these groups together, increased their access to valuable information of all sorts, and enabled them to be ‘fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it’ (Genesis 1:28). This process is perhaps the least appreciated facet of human evolution.”
~ F.A. Hayek, The Fatal Conceit: The Errors of Socialism (1988)
“In the end, all you have is your good name. Don’t damage it.”
Something my grandfather taught me.
I would add this:
“In life, all you have is yourself.”
That doesn’t mean that you don’t have the support of friends and family but it does mean that ultimately, you will choose what and who you will become (or allow yourself to become).
The crisis we have today is very simple – where the strong internally validate themselves based on their compliance to their own morals and principles, unprincipled, amoral weak people are looking for external validation of themselves. That is why we must be forced to recognize hundreds of different “genders”, acknowledge that thin-skinned student progressives need “safe spaces” – it is why people seek to enforce validation of certain behaviors by force of law. It is why they find it critically important to be given the imprimatur of government.
To be a self-sufficient, self-reliant and self-governing, independent individual, I have found one needs to adhere to these 5 propositions:
- Look at things as they are, not as your emotions color them. How you feel about something can lead you to change that thing but a thing will not change until you act upon it. Simply observing something through the lens of emotion does nothing. Placing flowers and teddy bears outside the site of a terrorist attack has yet to stop the next attack.
- Judge people by their actions, not their words. Watch what people do and measure them against that standard rather than what they say. Be wary of imprecise or vague words issued by people who trade in words – specificity and meaning are rare commodities these days.
- Depend upon your own arms – as Sun Tzu wrote “Being unconquerable lies with yourself.” The only person who can beat you is you – by the limits you place on yourself.
- Worship Athena, not Ares. In Greek mythology, Ares was the god of war – but Athena, the daughter of Zeus, incorporated the craftiness of Metis (whom Zeus consumed) and the warrior mentality of Zeus. In other words, be ready to fight but make it a smart fight. Use your head for something other than a battering ram.
- Declare unceasing warfare on yourself – fight to improve, to learn, to get better at everything you do. Increase your courage, your confidence, and your skills.
Some things to think about as we continue to stumble toward the absurdity necessary to create a progressive state.
This process is entirely reversible.