Individual or Community

 

The logical basis for intolerance is often drawn from the laws and morals of a society.  By setting a framework for what is right and wrong (or not-right), the community creates a framework for which the individual can operate.  This would seem in the best interests of the community and group, a social control meant for the sake of continued harmony.

This comes at a price though.  Those diverse things that do not fit into the mold of right/wrong are often seen as an offense to the natural order.   Diversity becomes a travesty and the different are punished, sometimes harshly.   This often continues until the individual begins to ask “Why is this so different?  Is love not the same?  Is the drive for life not the same?”  After this, the questions spread until the voices of the individual ring louder than those of the community.

Much of life is a paradox of perceptions.  What is good one instant is wrong another.  Placing the burden of this choice blindly into the hands of a system leads rarely to any kind of forward progress for the group.   Some would say that allowing the individual to choose between good and evil leads to a breakdown of society and eventually anarchy.    Where do you find the balance though, the melding of two into a greater whole?

Blind adherence to either system or stance stifles the possibilities of the greatest deeds of society.  A system of courts and laws is tempered by judge and jury having mercy or insight.  The individual is bound together through a network and web of social, communal, and personal interactions  These interaction impose a framework of what is tolerated within the group.

The debate goes are we born with an inherent sense of good/evil, right/wrong or is it a learned response from religious dogma or social practicality?  Inevitably, it is both.  Many see this stance a fence riding without any substantive input into the philosophical question.  I posit that we are individuals working within a group made of individuals.  Action and reaction.   Without one, the other does not achieve the full potential of their growth.

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