Uniqueness is sacrificed for achieving uniformity, individuality is drowned in a sea of anonymity, free spirit is crushed and replaced by a monotonous routine, rebellious and inquisitive nature is hammered down to make room for a passive and complliant domeanor and zest for life and art is replaced by an unending materialistic persuit. And the biggest tragedy is that it’s the parents themselves who force these changes upon their children in order to shape their life and make them compliant to the norms of society.
A short summary of an ideal life according the social dogmas is “Study-Work-Earn-Spend-Marry -Die”. Parents pressurised by social constraints, force the lives of their children into imprisonment within a spiritual prison of this six dimensional paradigms. They are not the first parents to do this, they were also indoctrined into this paradigm of reality by their parents. This has been a prevalent parental practice of several generations. Its impossible to estimate that how many great writers, painters, actors, singers, musicians, reformers and other artists were sacrificed because of the rigid norms and dogmas of our society. Parents in their desire to achieve social norms of acceptability for their children, often unconsciously extinguish the very spark of brilliance that made their children extraordinary. This spark could have lead their children to live extraordinary, adventurous and most importantly content lives. Instead they were forced into a materialistic, monotonous, unfulfilling and passive routine called ideal life, in which they spend their entire life moving to and fro between two points. And they are forced to do it because this is what is considered acceptable and ideal by society.
But reality is that parents do not endorse these social norms and dogmas for their own benefits. They do it because our current social structure assures and ascertains them to believe that this is the only logical and viable option. Our current social structure is designed to act as, what I call a mechanism of control. There are several aspects of this mechanism that makes it a very formidable, inescapable and highly efficient system to be defeated by an average member of society with normal means. One of the biggest weapon of this control mechanism is money. In our current social structure, money is a basic necessity for life. Human being needs air, food and water to survive. But its a shocking fact that today a person also needs money to ensure the availability of these three must haves for survival. You need money for putting a roof over your head. You need money for medical care in case of sickness. You need money for clothes. You need money to fulfill needs of your loved ones. You need money for providing a secure and respectable life for your loved ones. So basically you need money for each and every, little to big requirement for life.
And in today’s world your dreams alone can’t earn you money. Your free spirit can’t earn money for you. Your passions and beliefs alone can’t earn money for you. Your unmaterialistic and conscience ideology will only be an obstacle in you struggle to earn money. The majority of jobs out there won’t be compliant of your individualistic, unique and harmonious believes. So it either means you can starve to death waiting for your desired and ideal job or you can abandon all your life long dreams, believes, ethics and ideals for the sake of earning that much needed money. Every day millions of people kill their dreams and believes to earn money which they so desperately require to provide for their loved ones. Its a cruel fact of this world that you have to kill a dream to keep the other one alive. Then is it such a surprise that most prevalent health issue in the world is depression.
Another one of the integral part of this mechanism of control is the ideological segregation within our society. It a sad and tragic fact that despite the presence of logical reasoning, intellectual thinking, intelligent cognitive abilities and diversified personality in our domeanor, we identify ourselves from the perceptions that others have of us. We instinctively desire to be likeable and accommodative to others. And in our persuit of being likeable we often start to identify and value or our worth through eyes of other people.
One of the most common phenomena prevalent in human society is the herd mentality. Herd Mentality means how people are influenced by their peers to adopt certain behaviors, follow trends, like or dislike certain objects. Its can also be termed as unconscious replication of behaviours or psychie influenced by the ideology or behaviours or your peers. It is a basic human nature to isolate and segregate those individuals who show traits that are rare and uncommon in the society. So often people whose ideals, philosophy of life and ideologies are different from that of the majority are discriminated, abused, segregated and alienated by the society. Quite often the members of society who live life according to their individual believes and their aspiration which are contrary to accepted norms of society are termed pariah and persecuted.
We humans by nature crave company of others like us and are extremely social creatures so the fears of isolation, persecution and segregation compels us at the least to hide our true believes and ideals if not abandon them completely. And nobody wants their children to be disliked and hated. That is why parents, elders and teachers try to normalise domeanor and character of children so that they are well liked and accepted in the society. But in process of being likeable to others, we often become something that we ourselves hate. So ultimately its just the matter of which do you value more, being socially acceptable by lying to others or being true to your identity based on your believes, dreams and ideals. Its just a matter of perspective and depends how you look at that.
Our social structure is designed in such a manner that it favours the dull, unimaginative, passive, materialistic, agreeable, unquestioning, compliant and normal individuals who are available a dozen a dime. Society favours these kind of sorry chaps because it doesn’t want its unfair policies and structures to be questioned or challenged by anybody. Society needs members who follow their same old monotonous and boring routine. So in order to assure a steady supply of such robot like workers it has employed several mechanisms of control like money, education infrastructure, social morals and dogma and business models. It’s quite a tragic fact that individuals who believe in certain ideals and morals find themselves in a continous struggle for its free existence. At every step of the way individuals who challenge the unfair and unjust aspects of our society are discouraged and discriminated against just because of their willingness to challenge the norms of the society.
Individuals who possess the brilliance of artistic imagination face an uphill battle for their right to expression of their artistic selves. Rather than being encouraged, they are forced at every step of their life to abandon their unique talent and act like the majority. Nobody tries to understand the extent of tragedy and turmoil that these talented individuals suffer within themselves. It like telling a dolphin to stay on land. Just because a dolphin can breathe out of water doesn’t mean it can survive out of water. Its destiny is to swim through waves and soars out of the sea celebrating its existence. Similarly destiny of an artist is to allow its imagination to create wonderful expressions of art. You might be able to force an artist into a monotonous routine of work but you will eventually kill the artist within in the process.
It’s like you are being suffocated slowly. Each and every single day you feel that your spirit is being suffocated to death slowly. Gradually the artist within you will start to die a bit by bit with each passing day. And one day that artistic entity within you that you identified yourself with will disappear forever, leaving behind a vast ocean of emptiness. Its like you want to cry but you are not able to cry, you want to scream but you are not able to scream. You just become an expressionless person who carries an ocean of sadness within, but is unable to express it. There’s nothing worse that could happen to an artist, than loosing its ability of expression. I just can’t put the pain in words. It can only be felt.
I wonder what this world would have looked like if there had been no artists in it? What would this world have looked like if there had been no Leonardo Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, The Last Supper or Madonna of the rocks to inspire future generations to achieve that kind of perfection? Or if there had been no Michelangelo, Donatello and Raphael to give meaning to renaissance? No ,not the teenage mutant ninja turtles. Although they too have had huge impact on humanity. But I am talking about great renaissance artists of Italy. Imagine what would the music had been like if there had been no Beethoven, Mozart, Wagner, Bach or Puccini there to immortalise sound? What would our literature had been like if there had been no William Shakespeare, Earnest Hemingway, Mark Twain or Charles Dickens to forge a reality inseparable from fiction? What would humanity had been like had there been no philosophers like Aristotle, Plato, Confucious or Chanakya to ponder upon Its meaning?
It’s impossible to measure the impact of all these amazing artists on the developement of humanity. Artists have given a lot to humanity over the ages when humanity was going through the worst times. Today the very spirit of art is struggling in this materialistic world and for once art needs the help of humanity. Give the freedom that expression of art deserves. Give the artist faith he or she deserves. Nurture the artistic buds of today so that they can bloom into miraculous creators of tomorrow.