The whole and its parts

The whole & its parts

Polarization and extremes

While the last years may still have been the most peaceful in decades, there have also been so many disastrous killings creating unprecedented feelings of insecurity. The attacks happening within spaces we expect to be peaceful transform the felt sense of security.

They happen in what seems to be unexpected.

Today ease of connectivity allows us all to stay up to date on the information we seek. May it be for our hobbies, our profession or anything else. With so much information being available, there are also spaces available for those feeling uncomfortable or neither seen nor heard.

At the same time, the growing polarization leads to extremist ideas gaining in accessibility and popularity. Which in turn leads to more polarization.

Fear acts both ways.

Someone in fear, uncomfortable for whatever reason with society as is, will search for a way to deal with it. For some, the easiest way to deal with it is to channel that fear into extremist ideas. Finding others like them, they will receive support and encouragement for their extremist acts.

It has always been like this. What’s changed is the access to extremism which has become easy. And it’s unleashing forces we didn’t expect.

It’s becoming urgent to deal with it. But it can’t work by fighting them in a quest to make them disappear. That only creates more resistance and strength. Disapproving such forces is an invitation for them to perceive the fight as an acknowledgment and confirmation of their cause.

What’s important now is to switch from a mode of being against something and thus still in a polarization, to a mode of standing for something. It’s about becoming clear where we position ourselves as a society. We’ve got to review what we want.

There is no difference between a large organization like a state or country and a small organization like a team.


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