Kazimierz Dąbrowski talked about Positive Disintegration, or Individuation (Jung), or Personal Development, or Spiritual Evolution. These are all much the same thing. That is why I am going to talk now about the danger of being an individual in relation to Positive Disintegration within human society. While I am using Dabrowski’s terms, one must also recognize the significance in the relationship between personal disintegration and any other type of personal development. When one becomes, or is naturally an individual there may be certain consequences.
Dabrowski felt that society by in large was afflicted with a herd mentality and that there was a type of social sickness of mass delusions that may not offer the best solutions or image of reality. When one is greatly influenced by society they are integrated, or integrated into society. This means that their opinions and values are much the same as the family from which they came or the community in which they were born.
It is when the individual breaks away from the societal expectations of them and starts thinking critically and making judgements based on higher and lower values that they start to Disintegrate, which essentially means becoming a person of higher consciousness and an individual.
These higher values vary based on the individual and may be wildly inappropriate in the eyes of the society in which the individual resides, but nevertheless is held as truth for the individual who disregards widespread opinion or law for their own truth.
Dabrowski was a humble and brilliant man.
These are the exact types of people that have changed history forever and given us the gifts we rely upon today. We easily forget that human life has only existed at this level of comfort for a very short time. Technology and the sciences have offered us many things and while we uncover much of the world around us and inside of us we are able to exist in a much safer way. It was not uncommon in the past to lose multiple children in a lifetime to sickness. This, thankfully is not such a common issue of today. Many people never left the area they were born in and today we can easily jet set around the world.
Because of this incredible technological revolution and the apparent ease of our lives, it is easy to be arrogant and pretend that we have all the answers. The truth is much the same today as it was 500, and even 5000 years ago. Those with unique and innovative thoughts, the very same thoughts that will one day shape the lives of all, are not rewarded. Our communities, we rely on them for our life. In the past, something or someone different could be a massive threat to us. This is easily seen with the indian genocide, there, a little more lack of trust and they may have fared much better. Isn’t it ironic that the most trusting of us must pay so heavily, when those who easily could have been friends would die upon a sword.
Regardless, the idea I stress, which I have somewhat drifted away from, is that these unique individuals who break away from the safety of group think are brave souls. They were burned as witches, and our scientists and philosophers, even Jesus, put to death. Now idolized and revered, in their time they were the brunt of much abuse and cruelty. Our heroes of today who walk the path of Positive Disintegration face much of the same fate. Only now they aren’t yet seen as heroes. They are still the outcast and the joke, both ridiculed, ostracized and even killed.
Now, not everyones disintegration takes them such a divine route but it still must be noted that one of the very first steps, of breaking away from societies expectations can be the very hardest as it is against our very nature of self preservation.
While not written about in his literature, it seems that those who are disintegrated adopt almost near superpowers, become incredibly intuitive, have much larger stores of energy, increased problem solving ability and ability to see things as they really are, need very little sleep and seemingly effortlessly maintain intense enthusiasm. These seem to be the gifts that come with persistent elevated consciousness. These gifts seem to be much needed in order to battle the sheer discrimination one faces when breaking away from the system in which you reside.
The conflicts may exist on a very personal level, such as being banished by your family for picking an unsuitable faith or spouse to something much larger such as being potentially criminalized. In the recent case of Canadian Marc Emery it was being locked in jail in the neighboring country of America for his beliefs regarding consumption of a plant. Instead of admitting defeat he has started on a complete evolution and change of the American prison system from the inside. He was even fired from his prison job for sneaking educational books into the library.
The reality of life for someone on the journey of disintegration is the same story as the poor child who doesn’t fit in by dressing appropriately, getting teased at school. They are on the sidelines, not getting to enjoy what everyone else seems to have right to… but in the case of disintegration this exists on a scale with much higher stakes. If you are rejected in school, your life may be miserable but you will not die. Being socially rejected in today’s society could mean not being chosen for a job, and thus not being able to support your family. It could mean not being able to find the right type of mate, and then failing to breed. There are many implications, and for many the idea of being humiliated or ridiculed is simply too much to bare.
I believe this is why many people exist in a state of neurosis. If you are to agree with Dabrowski in his statement of how pain or trauma is often required for personal growth, it is easy to see where such neurosis would come from. If it is inside of us, for many of us to want to be drastically more than we currently are, this is something that would fight violently with the part of us craving security and acceptance for survival. An internal battle that could, and according to Dabrowski and myself, drive one insane.
It is just as important today, or even more so that we realize the need for individuals to disintegrate and break loose from the pack to change the face of history forever. Unfortunately in the age of technology, those who in the past would have got away with breaking the law for innovation could now easily be caught and traced. Great scientific minds have no access to chemicals and other things to experiment with. Many things are regulated by the state and kept strictly inaccessible, without permits which are only available to corporations and educational institutions. Legislature and corporate greed are choking potential human development.
In the past we had the benefit of cultures completely cut off from each other. Today collective bias moves quickly as technology carries popular opinions and they spread like a highly contagious infection. Fortunately, positive ideas also spread this way but it is unfortunately still a shame that we do not have the sanctity of these small isolated communities to offer variety of mass delusion and opinion. In this way, instead of just the fall of Rome we may bear witness to the fall of the world based on mass delusion of how to behave. With the right delusion we could be leading ourselves into our own graves.
We must always be vigilant to be our best as individual human beings, not to continue to perpetuate outdated or self defeating ideas simply because that is the way it has ought to be done (as it has been done before).
It is with this in mind that I pray brave souls continue to face adversity, neurosis and even death to rise above what it means to be basically human and help us evolve to something more. It is through disintegration, with the actions of brave souls throughout time, who risk everything, that we thrive.