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It baffles me that people think it's so shockingly outlandish that there are people who don't reactionarily buy into the tribalistic pressures around us to simply act like everyone else. Humanity is not homogeneous, yet some notions like these are always projected out to be considered an immutable, inescapable constant. I can only guess that's that same fear of being different shining through.

I presume that on sites like this, there's a higher percentage of people who attempt to be more intentionally decisive about themselves and their lives. We don't necessarily have to toss out everything like Knight did, but looking at life and all the weird social rituals and expectations built up, the dichotomy between those and what seems actually beneficial becomes apparent. That conflict causes a choice, we would seek to do the "better" thing, and that draws many people outside the superficial social norms.

I especially bristle at this quote: "Why don’t we want to be alone? Because the stuff that’s down there is stuff you don’t want to see." Anybody who tries to intentionally better themselves knows what's down there. You have to assess what you are if you're going to change. Sure, you can deny and hide from all that and simply find comfort in floating along with everybody else in social inertia, but that seems to me to be a shameful waste of those conceptual abilities which (apparently) make us uniquely human.




> buy into the tribalistic pressures around us to simply act like everyone else

Does anyone else appreciate the delicious irony that parent is hitting all the right notes for an appeal to the tribe while at the same time criticizing tribalism?

1. Establish an 'us' vs. 'them' distinction ('I presume on sites like this') 2. Subtly denigrating outsiders ('draws many people outside the superficial social norms.') 3. Establishing higher common values ('That conflict causes a choice, we would seek to do the "better" thing')

Trying to be original, individualistic, and nonconformist what everyone is taught in the US from an early age.


Monty Python nailed this sort of thing perfectly in 'The Life of Brian' in the 'You are all individuals' scene near the end.


That's strawmanning my point pretty hard.

There is no "us" and "them" in what I'm saying. There's a bunch of varying individuals, and ad-hoc grouping whereever there's some perceived similarity.

The problem is that that grouping instinct goes overboard, and when nonsense or applicability of what emerges from the grouping pressure isn't questioned at all. This happens in small groups as well as large ones, so it's not even a majority vs minority issue. It's simply one of being swept up in our default reactionary ways, and when that is challenged, projecting an assumption that everybody is swept up in the same way as ourself (as the author does) because of that exact same instinct.


There are very real evolutionary pressure on humans to be social and pliant and buy into the notion that society is a net good, whether it be a tribal one or a more modern version. Just think about it: the outliers get ostracized and more often than not don't pass on their genes to the next generation. Until very recently, we had extremely tribal behavior among human societies as well. So it makes sense that most people still naturally think its kinda outlandish to not want to be a part of society or take part in its rituals.

I can't express how glad I feel though, that I am living in an age and country where not being socially pliant isn't something that would get me killed. Where I can continue to live my life the way that I want to, rather than buy into social norms and regulations, many of which seem rather anachronistic.


Being social and socially pliant are not the same thing. Speaking from personal experience.

I'm almost reflexively rebellious but also crave social interaction. It kind of sucks, actually.


> I am living in an age and country where not being socially pliant isn't something that would get me killed

Not killed, but certainly the victim of gossip, even smear campaigns and gang stalking. You're an ideal patsy to cover up some sociopath's schemes. "You may not be interested in war, but war is interestwd in you."


I mean, it's not exactly an easy life. You seem to give up a lot just to not see people sometimes.


I find that regulating when and how I see people helps.

I can be social, personable, agreeable, all that jazz. But like any given normal introvert, I need the recharge by myself and alone. For how long? Of course that depends. For me, I'll arrive to a party acceptably early [and gladly help out or whatever] or right on time as expected, and leave in classic Dr Who style when very few people notice; "happy to come, happy to go" and don't overstay my welcome.

I feel like I am aware of what I am "missing out on not to see people sometimes". Chitchat, small talk, how's it going, your troubles, my troubles. However, good fences do actually make good neighbors. I've gotten great help from my neighbors and such, with about as much effort put in by either of us as described by Robert Frost, and I couldn't be more grateful.




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