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Saturday, 13 June 2015

When We Are Individuals

Americans tend to be conformists. One sees this in fashion, architecture, entertainment, clubbing, sports, and beliefs. Why Americans seem to be more conforming than other cultures has to do with the old vision of Manifest Destiny and the American dream.

Both ideals have been killed by a growing multiculturalism which is a good if incorporated into the main culture properly.

But, the main reason why Americans are conformists is that the culture is still in an adolescent stage of development. How odd that the decay of American democracy and culture happen in this adolescent state. America has never had the chance to grow up and be truly responsible in the world. It is fading away quickly as a world power, this happening on purpose, and soon will be part of a globalization of government-the NWO.

But, conformity has its roots in another dangerous ideology-that of the security of group think.

As long as people think alike and conform in that thinking, everything will be OK.

Not OK.

A society is as healthy as each individual. We are created each unique. We each have a specific role to play in society. We meet God individually now and especially after we die, in our own particular judgment.

Americans are afraid to be seen as individuals. Now, it should be no surprise to blog readers that I have never been a conformist. I am a relator, one who builds relationships even for a large community, but I have never been a conformist. All my siblings are non-conformists. Maybe this attitude is genetic. but I think it has something to do with being raised Catholic.

We were raised first to be Catholics, and, second, to be Americans. Loyalties were clear. Church first, State second.

God first, group second.

Those who put society or the group first have difficulty being individuals. I remember long ago teaching two works by St. Augustine, Confessions, and City of God. Some of these ideas I have put on this blog. But, in these courses, what became clear to the students, was the importance of the individual will.

Free will must be freely individual. One must think as an individual and then decide to be part of a larger group. One decides to get married and have a family-that is a group. One decides to be a member of a parish, or a particular Mass group, like the TLM Mass groupings. One decides to homeschool, and be part of a larger support group, and so on.

Conformists cannot think outside the ordinary boxes of society. Sadly, some choose bad company and end up great sinners by following the crowd. We sometimes see teens do this, and good parents intervene.

Conformity cannot be a substitute for individual spiritual responsibility. Some people think being a Sunday Catholic is sufficient for salvation, which this is not. The Sunday Mass goer, who forgets his Faith during the week,  perceives that being part of the group is what will save him.

To be in the "right crowd" does not guarantee salvation.

Perhaps, as the culture, the society of America slides into complete decadence, individuality will emerge again as a value. One will have to stand up to the group, the crowd, the laws of a pagan nation as an individual.

We honor individuals in the Catholic Church--they are called saints. Some are martyrs, who chose their own individual conscience, rightly formed to put on the Mind of Christ, and died for standing up against the crowd.

We are individuals when we choose freely to follow Christ and His Church. Matthew shares Christ's words about being an individual.

Matthew 10:34-40Douay-Rheims 

34 Do not think that I came to send peace upon earth: I came not to send peace, but the sword.
35 For I came to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.
36 And a man's enemies shall be they of his own household.
37 He that loveth father or mother more than me, is not worthy of me; and he that loveth son or daughter more than me, is not worthy of me.
38 And he that taketh not up his cross, and followeth me, is not worthy of me.
39 He that findeth his life, shall lose it: and he that shall lose his life for me, shall find it.
40 He that receiveth you, receiveth me: and he that receiveth me, receiveth him that sent me.