Conformity or Freedom?

Originally Posted September 19 2016

Which is better? Conformity or Freedom? Such has been the debate for millennia. We see a few decades of Conformity due to fear of anarchy, until we switch to a few decades of freedom in fear of loss of identity and big brother is watching you.

I think the main problem is however, that there is no answer to the question of which is better, for the question itself is too shallow to have an answer in the first place.

Imagine if you were painting a picture. You had all your colours around you but you decided to simply cover your canvas in a coat of each. Each coat would be painted the same way, the same depth, completely uniform….. What would you end up with? Most likely a canvas coated in some hideous form of brown.

Each colour is unique and beautiful…. but if each colour is doing the same thing, as a mass it becomes gross and hideous. The very things that made these colours stand out, now draws attention away from them.

Now let’s imagine you and 10 other painters each did whatever they wanted in one colour each. There was no collaboration, and you were actually completely blind to what the other painters were doing. One might be writing a story in fuchsia, one may be drawing lime green bunnies, one may be writing obscenities in blood red, or just covering the board in blue scribbles. This is hard to imagine, as true chaos goes so against our nature, that even in experimental art, the chaos is subconsciously chosen to compliment the others. The result would be a complicated mess similar to your walls if your kids get a hold of crayons for too long.

So what is the answer then? Well let’s think of a picture you do like.

It may be Davinci, it may be Michael Angelo, Yeesh, it might even be Deviant Art, Anime, or Disney! Just think of any and every picture you have really felt has taken your breath away….

In these pictures, there are often many colours going many directions. Some may seem thicker, some may seem thinner, some may seem to contradict others, some may seem to work together…. but amidst this chaos, each and every colour works together to create a larger picture. Even if the picture is too large for them to fully see yet.

Each colour on their own, (no matter how much of the picture is that colour) needs all the other colours to truly be impactful. Take even the tiny black lines out of a cartoon, and while you may still understand the basic gist of the picture, it will seem so lackluster compared to the full thing.

But at the same time, each colour may be doing its own thing, but they all work towards the same goal! If the colour of the sky decided it wanted to also be the grass, What would happen? The whole communication would be lost!

To sum up, what does this have to do with life?

There are many different people in this world. There may be some who seem to flourish, there may be some who seem to barely get by. Realize you were made the way you were for a purpose! Realize your purpose is important and as unique as you are! No one else can be you! So do your best to be the best you you can be!

But at the same time, this world is not without rules and guidelines. We cannot simply go through life doing what seems right in our own eyes, for our perspective is far too small to see the whole picture. We are responsible for our lives, and that is a big enough job as it is. We are not to control the world as well. That is meant for the artist who is far larger than us.

Be you! You were always meant to be you, and that is not necessarily a bad thing. But take guidance as well, for your purpose and value will shine all the more, and the painting made will be truly beautiful


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