There is a world, and we are born into it. It was there before we arrived. We don’t know anything about this world. It is a blank map filled with mysterious places we haven’t been to yet. We don’t know it.
Parents tell us about it, and what it means. Teachers do the same, but for different reasons. Others appear, and muscle in with their own agendas. Views, opinions, judgements flood in, from day one, like a relentless tide, vying with our own experiences and conclusions, for dominance.
If you form an opinion that is unknown to others, your opinion is labeled ‘wrong’. If you try to explain why you don’t think your opinion is wrong, you get labeled stupid. If you try to explain why your opinion is not stupid, you get labeled arrogant. Resist surrendering your opinion, and you are labeled egotistical.
Over time, you may realize that your opinion is not an opinion at all. That it is, in fact, observation, that is neither for, nor against. Not an argument, nor a defense. Not an assertion, nor an excuse. And it is the others who have opinons, based upon biases, that have very little to do with observing the world, and more to do with persuasion and control.
The hermit in the woods is unconcerned with socialization. To him, it is meaningless. He interacts with the world, not just a single fragment of it. He discovers things, and the nature of those things. Most of all, he discovers himself. While not being acutely aware that it is himself he is discovering. He fits his environment, or he dies. Things work, or don’t work. Persuasion has nothing to do with anything.
Such a man may learn things, directly, in his one-on-one interaction with the world, that are unknown to the social masses. Upon returning to that social world, he may speak of what he knows. But the things he speaks of, and the way in which he speaks of them, will not be social things, or his delivery geared to social norms. For he is not social, even though he might like to be. And the socializers are nothing like him.
The newly-social hermit soon discovers he is being misunderstood. He shares himself with others, and speaks of what he knows. While others interpret what he says, and the way in which he says it, as an attempt to appear to be trying to seem like something he is not.
The hermit knows not what to make of this. Though he speaks the same language, and uses the same words, somehow something is just not happening, and he is unsure what that something is. He stretches himself, in unaccustomed directions, to accomodate the others. While the others demand more and more accomodation, and that he be as they are.
He can not do this, beyond a certain point, for he is not as they are, and so he trys a new tack. He reduces his flowing narrative to the simplest terms, and speaks in ways that resist misinterpretation. Yet all his words, even in their sparseness, are misunderstood.
He had begun by feeling joy at the chance to share with others. But now his joy slowly turns to dismay at the results of his sharing. The others whisper among themselves, and become angry, and he has no idea why. They attack him. He turns aside their attacks, thinking that they would not be attacking him if they could only understand him. So he perserveres, hoping to be understood…
Finally, though, he comes to realize that there is nothing he can do. He is hated.
He does not know why he is hated, but is painfully aware that he is. He offered what he had, simply to share it with the others. Because he was aware that they did not have what he had. And somehow this act of sharing was taken to be an attack on the others. As if to say that he was telling, implying, indicating, insinuating, that they were somehow less than he, and who did he think he was, to pose as seemingly superior, at their expense.
He started out as who he was, and knowing who he was. As what he was, and knowing what he was. Only to inexplicably find himself attacked from all sides for seeming to appear to want to make it look like he was thinking he was something he obviously wasn’t in order to give the impression of superiority for the purpose of lording it over everybody else who were all the things he thought he was, but wasn’t, while they were.
He sadly got on his bike, pedaled off, and that was the last anybody ever heard of him.
Socialization. The big reward you get for wiping out the other 99.99999% of life.