By no means to I mean to sound emo when I say this, but in order to discuss social conditioning I feel like using the biggest example first will help in understanding what exactly I mean when I use the term: social conditioning.
I studied at the university of sydney, where there was a foot-bridge that went over parammata road, which is a busy 4 lane road.
Often I'd park my car on one side of the foot-bridge and walk over it to get to campus. I was in my first year of philosophy, studying determinism, writing a paper on hard-determinism, and contemplating a lot about morals, and the extend unto which we live in a policed state, - whereby, policing is something we do to ourselves (not necessarily something that is inflicted upon us by higher powers.) So, im walking along the footbridge, and im happy, im really happy but then I look down and thought 'what if i just jumped off this bridge...' now, i know how fucked up this might read, and depression, anxiety and all that kinda thing is stuff ive dealt with BUT this wasnt about any of the above, I thought WHAT is this moral code, this social conditioning , which makes us constantly control ourselves moving through life without being aware of it. Maybe its our sanity that keeps us from walking off bridges, but what I find really interesting is the DIFFERENCE between those who ponder jumping off a bridge (by no means am i suggesting anyone do it,....dah) and those who dont even think about it, because they are happy to not think about anything but the obvious.
So theres this bridge, and im thinking , its so crazy that I walk on this everyday, that im trained to not try anything stupid, not experiment with this structure, but whose to say what i can and cant do? This is when I began thinking wow, im my own policing state, im not free, none of us are, because we all know there are certain impossibilities and we can never overcome them....such as trying to fly, or survive jumping onto a car off a freeway...NOW i know this is extreme, but I just had to give the example to look at something more minor and not so obvious, something subliminal.
I have come to this 'cross-road' in life where i am realising how much I am missing out on because my inner critic, my inner voice that says I cant is stopping me from facing certain truths. I am going to remain ambiguous as to what these truths are, but let me just say, i blame most of this 'fear' i have on facing myself on social conditioning. Like, yes, if i stepped off the footbridge id most likely face my maker but if i step in a new direction than what ive been taught, as far as this 'ambigious' thing im talking about goes i'd probabbly be a lot fuking happier. i dont know? the point it, what stops us humans from just letting go of the social conditions unto which we force ourselves to prescribe to. I am fairly open minded, I accept people for what they are, and can handle most honest conversations about intense and personal issues of people and dont judge, I tell people constantly to focus on accepting people and choices, and just embracing everything but in the end i shy away from really letting go. It makes me think, WHO are the people/the influences that prescribe WHAT i think and the way i act, is it my family, my peers, was it my schooling, my first lover...was it my favourite book...
bla, look this are all thoughts but if you are reading this take a moment tomorrow to think whilst your going about your daily routine about how much you do because someone influenced you to do it, NOT because inside its what you really wanted. ie- why do we automatically drive the same routes everyday, or fight about the same boring issues over and over, why are we soooo unfree...
look, this was a really shit post to be honest, and i think im finding it hard to articulate what i mean, but whatever.
ive now written this, so here it will stay.