Dysfunctional Independence

The other day, I heard a speaker use a term that expressed something I have been telling people for years. It was about an idea that is very popular in our American culture, the belief that being self-made and independent is the ideal.

This idea is not only flawed, but is ridiculous. Part of our becoming fully actualized, efficient, and capable human beings is our ability to open up and receive. Unfortunately, this contradicts our Americans egos, which simply wants to be independent, individualistic self-made persons. We need to understand that the latter idea, of being an individualistic self-made person, is simply an illusion that does not serve us.

There is no one that has made themselves: we have all stood on, and still stand on, the shoulders of others. The idea that we did it ourselves is egoic and truly dysfunctional. There are very few out there growing their own food, or making their own tools, or developing their own phones, or coding their own software, or writing their own legal documents. We receive support in everything from food, to services, to transportation, to information, even to knowledge. There is no way that any one person is doing it all. If you think about it, if we were to compare what we do individually to how much support we receive, we would find that what we do is a small fraction.

If you were never taught by others, and you never learned from anyone, you would be a profoundly dysfunctional person. You would have to learn everything that you currently do and know from scratch, which is simply impossible.

Much love,