October 2, 2012
Letting Go Of Society’s Expectations! (Don’t Be The Next Commodity in The Assembly Line)
I was listening to Ralph Smart’s latest video last night, in which he talked about being true to ourselves and not become a slave (or “mindless drone”) in the workplace and society.
Yes, it is worth everything to be true to our authentic self and not be pressurised by others to conform to the norms or expectations of the work culture (or society or religion). It is our basic human right to express our individuality. No one can tell us (whether directly or indirectly) what to believe or how to act in a certain situation because it would be tantamount to faking just to appear nice or to conform to certain norms or expectations.
Being a rebel in the positive sense
I have also read through Osho’s article on his definition of a rebel, and I find his article balanced and insightful. I think he explained well the difference between rebellion and revolution, as well as between commune and society/establishment.
“A commune is a communion of individuals who have all rebelled against all kinds of stupidities, superstitions. That is their meeting point. But that does not mean that they create an alternative society, another establishment. Then it would only be revolution.”
The word “rebellion” has unfortunately been given much negative press by the society and organised religions because the authorities do not like other people to question their system or do things differently, or believe differently from themselves. But as Osho clarified in his article, rebellion is not about opposing people; rather it is about opposing rigid mindsets that discriminate people, or control people, or impose burdens on people to perform or conform to meet unrealistic expectations.
Rebellion, as I understand it, is about challenging an oppressive system to allow freedom for people to express their individuality and not become soulless. No one really likes to live in a society where everyone thinks the same, dresses the same style, and uses the same lingo – it would be boring and dehumanising to live like robots (or “mindless drones”, as Ralph Smart puts it in his video). It would also create disharmony within ourselves when we are not allowed to be true to ourselves and express our own uniqueness and think for ourselves.
As I understand from Osho’s article, even revolution is not exactly an ideal because for every revolution to create an alternative society or establish another regime, there will be a new dictator. Yesterday’s freedom fighter may become today’s oppressor, and we have seen this phenomenon repeated many times in history. So revolution is not really a permanent solution, but rather rebellion can be an answer to the problem of discrimination and oppression in the world. Each of us can choose to rebel in our own way against oppression, against hypocrisy, against the judgemental and condemning attitudes of those who think they are “superior” just because of some external factors that they are attached to (whether it is paper qualifications or work experience or affiliation to a certain organisation or religion, etc).
We know that in actuality, no one is better than others because everyone is born equal and everyone is equally important and valuable. Like what Osho wrote, rebellion is all about respecting ourselves as an individual, and respecting everyone else in the same way to be their own unique individuals. There will be more peace and harmony if everyone were to give one another the freedom to express their own unique individuality and be true to ourselves.
After all, God/Divine/Universe loves diversity, and we can have unity in diversity, just as in the natural ecosystem, there is such a vast diversity of plants and animals living and co-existing in a natural state of balance or equilibrium. Similarly, every part of the body is equal and no one part is more important than the other – every part is necessary for the optimal functioning of the body.
Like what Ralph Smart says in his video, the system of the society is dying and it is futile for those who try to hold on to the system. They may try to conform and be accepted in the eyes of the society, but they are only making themselves a slave of the system. Probably the only hope is for them to be honest with themselves and come to terms in dealing with their own shadow self.
In view of this, it is good for us to stand up for ourselves and not allow ourselves to be squeezed into other people’s mold.
“For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?” (Mark 8:36)