‘Tis not too late to seek a newer world. – Tennyson
An iconoclast is a person who attacks cherished beliefs or institutions. In this essay we are going to attack not only cherished beliefs and institutions but also long-held human attitudes and values in the Global Village. Why? Because these “icons” are preventing humanity from creating a sustainable human community on our planet. They gotta go!
There has been a lot of controversy of late in America about removing or relocating statues from prominent public display. Many of these are Civil War heroes and are no longer appropriate due to shifting worldviews in the evolving American community. What has changed? Well, context for one.
In an essay in the New York Times Magazine, author Susan Dominus was describing psychologist Walter Mischel: “Personality was not as static as his predecessors believed; context mattered.” (1) How can we continue to change our context to create a healthier narrative in America and the world?
You guessed it! We will have to bring down outmoded icons. Our personality or identity can be changed just as the story that contains it can be changed. In fact, our story determines our identity. If we remain attached to outmoded institutions and beliefs no profound changes will occur in our current experience. We are stuck in a “Groundhog Day” nightmare.
Now we get to the shocking part of the prescription we must swallow to rid ourselves of the disease that will ultimately destroy all of us on this planet. Religion must go. Look around our planet and note how much of the violence has its origin in conflict among people of differing religions and sects.
Secondly, the belief in nationalism is incompatible with a sustainable human community. Artificial and poisonous national boundaries must be dissolved as we come together in one harmonious global community. To begin that process, a belief in the illusion of the other must be abandoned. If we are a truly rational and conscious species, we will be able to see that every human being is, in all fundamental respects, exactly like every other human being.
If you would like some support in beginning the process of awakening, click on the link below.
Insight # 76: Religion is for people who are afraid of going to hell, and spirituality is for people who have been there. – Martha Beck
- “Paradigm A: A New Reality,” essay found in Where Am I? (2012), by Roy Charles Henry, pages 77-86.
- Dominus, Susan. “Walter Mischel.” The New York Times Magazine. December 30, 2018, page 57.