Wednesday, July 13, 2016
The almost impossible personality of the brave outsider
It seems true that fortune favors the brave, but not always within the lifetime of the brave. That is where the big challenge comes, the brave must often continue in the face of outsiderhood for a lifetime.
For the outsider, belief in self can become nearly megalomaniacal, which presents another challenge of requiring the brave to also be prudent. Not many men or women can do this well. Some become overwhelmed by frustration or anger, some go mad, some become drunks, or obese.
And then actual intelligence or wisdom must also be present, people can have courage and yet be unintelligent. And good health and just plain luck in traits of personality are involved---"normal" genetic traits and upbringing tend to produce normal people and not outsiders, good or bad.
And finally, in this almost impossible personality mix of the outsider, when the outsider also believes in traditional human nature and group-morality he or she will nevertheless have to deal with being judged a radical individual outside the group.
We need to be able to tell the difference between social and anti-social outsiders---there are even psychometric tests that can help with this, because outsiders can be good mimics.
Nevertheless, it does seem true that the courage and prudence of the brave sometimes prevails.
But non-outsiders also need to have some courage and prudence in religion, philosophy, art, and politics, and this helps define the personalities we look for at the present time in politics, and in culture.