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Public Nerdity Is Not A Crime

I admit it: I am allergic to True Believers.

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There's an argument, perhaps merited, that everyone has a religion, even atheists. But I have discovered, I have a bias, perhaps even an allergy, to what I think of as "True Believer" syndrome.

Whether they are people who come a'knockin' to find out whether you are interested in their religion, or people who are devout followers of anything else requiring a zealous passion for the One True Way, I know, now, to slam the door.
It affects all walks of life, especially those which have had to struggle against a hostile surrounding culture. Homebirthing, breastfeeding (especially past infancy), and homeschooling, are particularly vulnerable to zealotry and cultism, because passion is a strength when confronting a hostile majority.
But True Believer Syndrome can overtake personal responsibility, common sense, and everything else, as the Believer, or Acolyte, redefines their life according to the perceived tenets of the belief system, and it's always for the same goal: validation.

People hungry for validation would sell their soul, their timeshares, and their kids, to get social approval from the club whose approval they seek, and because of that, they are dangerous. Crazy-like-a-fox, dangerous. But worse than that, they are annoying. And idiotic. And boorish.

Not that I haven't been guilty of all of the above myself (annoying, idiotic, and boorish). Due to my exceptional memory, my odd moments of anguish in the shower, over stupid crappy shallow impulses I gave into in high school, may haunt me the rest of my days. Things my erstwhile classmates don't even remember, sting my conscience, at nearly 40, and provide motivation never to tolerate in myself, the temptation to take the easier path, when the righteous one is rocky.

But if I can take a deep breath, and forgive my teenaged self her tresspasses, and then smile sweetly and say "no, thanks" to whatever iteration of Devout Believer darkens my door next time, it will be a blessing. Because people who have suspended their own wisdom in favor of strict adherence to whatever system they cling to, are on a learning curve I am no longer on, and whereas I wish them well on their journey (once I'm safely past the primal urge to wish them a plague of bedbugs), I want no part of it anymore.

It's a form of spiritual immaturity, and it's to be loved by those great souls capable of universal love. Until and unless I can join those ranks, though, I just have to say, "We're full up on crazy here. Go peddle it somewhere else."
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  1. crunchynerd's Avatar
    Just realized in reading it, how priggish that sounded. We're all on a learning curve. Belief in something can be a powerful motivator, without which, action falls short.

    I was talking about the form of belief that is akin to addiction or mindless faddishness, where it hardly matters what particular form it is at the moment. When a person seeks to avoid personal responsibility for their decisions, by making the addiction, fad, or belief system, the proxy and focus, personal growth is circumvented. I think that's why addicts and cult members seem to stop growing emotionally during the affected period of their lives.
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