The Tiny Man Thus Spake - 2 : The Multitude

I had always prided myself on being an Individualist. Society, for me, had always been a waste of time, energy and faculties. And the good thing about my childhood was that my parents allowed me complete freedom to lead my life however I wished. I had and still have very few friends – and that too after having fully validated their intellectual pedigree and only after being satisfied that our mental frequencies match. I rarely leave my house except for going to my regular pub or for buying my stock of cigarettes. I have hardly ever been to any places of worship or tourist spots. Give me a choice between a crowd and the serenity of my home, I would always choose seclusion to the multitude. I prefer books to people, I prefer DVD to a Multiplex, I prefer listening to a good song or Churchill’s speeches rather than listen to the ramblings of societal elements.

But I am a liberal at heart, a tolerant fellow and although I have an utter disdain towards the motions of society, I accept their existence whole-heartedly. Unlike many communities out here, I am a firm believer in Democracy. I am a subscriber to what is commonly known as an individualistic worldview.

Yet surprise, surprise.

When I recently took a test of determining my level of “Individualism” vis-à-vis “Collectivism”, more than 80% of my answers were “Collectivist”. Surprising, isn’t it?

More surprising was the fact that several gregarious people, the typical societal elements, the herd – fell in the Individualistic category.

Was there something wrong with the test, or was there something wrong with me or was there something wrong with the Masses?

I realized later, the fallacy was in the topic itself.

The topic “I am” is an incorrect question for determining the degree of “Individualism” vis-à-vis “Collectivism”. And why should that be the case, one may very well ask.

The answer to “I” is always relative or as an attribute of the individual. But the individual per se cannot be defined. I am either the son of so and so, or a follower of so and so brotherhood, or a fan of so and so club or have an attribute called name whose property is Subhodeep, and so and so forth. I have tried to illustrate the point below.



So?

So essentially, I remain a 99% Individualist and the Masses remain the Collectivist. I have and shall continue to second the Bard in his disdain for the multitude.

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