On Stigma

Stigma that once held society and family together are subject to much derision today. Where once the means of communal stigma were its very ends, today we are distracted from these once ‘useful constraints’ that brandished an ‘other’ when the individual strayed too far.A divergent other in historic times (and today) was a threat to the order co-opted by religion. Today’s free societies find the very idea of submission to worthy cause a vestige of dying times and oppressive to their modernity.

Freedom means a relinquishing of this necessitation that burdens upon your time, your energies and your goodwill. So we are instead burdened by the mechanisms that guard and hone this new freedom –– the consumption-production dichotomy. We have traded this stigma of ‘freedom’ for the stigma of ‘imposition.’ Older checks and balances offered access to a communal existence devoid of performance anxiety out of a pursuit for the higher, the truer metaphysical.

Newer checks and balances have co-opted the same governing principles to define and then assign value in this consumptive-productive dichotomy.
To be neither is to be subject to this stigma. Don’t consume? You’re ill-prepared in your engagements with the masses that digitally vegetate and identify with their gluttony. Don’t produce either? What are you good for then?In this new ‘freedom’ the world is more polarizing and less ‘free’ from the constraints of this dichotomy.

You only ‘are’ to those around you by having or making –– the only measure of your societal value to a restless and neurotic world. We are enslaved by this unspoken expectancy of ‘freedom’ that flourishes off of this dichotomy. It swallows all opportunity to engage in the procedural and the mindful, the ‘keyed in’ activities which make its means its very ends –– family, community, propositional gathering.

Every engagement addresses a consumptive incentive –– intellectual, appetitive or otherwise. The procedural, unifying end is divergent and foreign to an incentive oriented consumptive, mechanical world.Stigma was useful not because it maintained order, not because it protected group-think and incentive structures but because it was there. There to conform to, central to all dialects of purpose, belonging and meaning in life.

A ‘mark of disgrace’ was a departure from such commitment through a disavowing of your agency to be beholden to the meaningful. Today it is a celebratory landmark to the nihilistic. To them, ‘no meaning’ is meaning enough. Their disavowing an invitation to mass suffering. A world of calamity, nothingness and destitution is their ‘communal home’ –– where everyone finally feels as they have and where their suffering is known. 

Their hope for actualization is a narcissistic eventuality of their surroundings, an externalized projection of their worries; their paranoia and loneliness finally known, felt, appreciated and catered to by everyone’s subjugation and subsequent damnation.