Most people who are in power or influence position support society’s dictates in regards to individual’s worth. After all, that’s the best way for those people to justify their own worth, and in the process make certain others do not matter or do not matter as much (as they are). So, social classes, social status are norms set by society to ensure a de facto gauge for individuals to interact with one another.
We’re all under the spell of such norms; if we’re not “The Jones”, we strive to become like The Jones, we act like The Jones. In a sense, we give complete legitimacy to society’s definition of an individual’s worth, to our own detriment. The most likely good that can come from adopting society’s dictate of someone’s worth is a gauge for one’s own social advancement; it’s something no one seems to be able to escape, at least as long as one belongs to a society of sort. Beyond that, society’s dictate is more an impediment than a tool that can help understand and explain worth.
Recall that everyone matters unless one decides otherwise? Why would anyone decide not to matter? No one would, but society forces the issue. Most of us cope with that graciously, others not so well. Some would take their own lives (commit suicide), would become self-destructive or behave devilishly towards everyone including their own families. Of course, society is always quick to distance itself from and labels those types of behavior as abnormal; but society always falls short of pointing the fingers at the roots of the problems, society itself.
Today, we have numerous such examples of individuals who have SUDDENLY started to act erratically (act out we say). Out of nowhere, nobody saw it coming but Joe – now the disturbed individual – has been bullied, pushed around, avoided, ignored and teased; Joe started feeling worthless. Maybe Joe got to the point where he felt he no longer matters, so nothing else mattered either. In a sense, society pays the price of its own doing.
On the next Reflection, we’ll explore whether there is some good that can come out of society’s dictate regarding individual’s worth. In the meantime, if you’re still unsure whether you matter, drop us a line; we’ll shed more light into the topic.