Thursday, 14 November 2013

Being Mature, Shame Traps and Being A Mensch

Over at The Rawness, they asked over several parts "What is maturity?" And all of them walked straight into the trap. They accepted that the concept had moral freight that could be shame-dumped on transgressors. I say, faced with any concept that gets used to shame people? Screw it. Stop using it and replace it with solid descriptives instead. Who cares what someone else trying to con you into behaving in such-a-way call "mature"? 

You have respect for your body, and so exercise and eat well; you have respect for your mind, and so read challenging non-fiction, and avoids junk culture; you have respect for your soul and emotions, and so choose your friends and acquaintances well - avoiding users, vampires, dis-respectors and other vexatious and turing people; you pay your fair and due taxes, and you pay your due bills; you work in the private sector or in law enforcement, fire-fighting, the military or medicine; you are considerate to the similarly well-behaved, and co-operate with those who bear you no ill-will. Mostly you don't do stuff for free, though you do "give" if you can. You have strong boundaries, and above all, you do not enter into any contract with high exit costs (cf marriage and almost all large outsourcing contracts). 

You do all that, and you will not care if anybody calls you "immature". 

I would add, but this is optional, that you don't identify yourself with the values, traditions and social and religious practices of your family, friends, employer, society or economy. Sure, go along with it to get done what you need to get done, but belief? I don't hide behind religion, culture or any other of Mommy's conceptual skirts to defend what I do or how I feel.

Do all this and you will come across as polite, considerate and co-operative - to those whose behaviour and attitude qualify them. You won't let others spill your feelings all over you, and you won't trouble others with yours either. You are going to come across as pretty darn self-contained and distant, though among friends you will be just the opposite. You will be the guy who, well, when someone falls sick in front of you, you will call for an ambulance and stay with them until it gets there, and then get on with your day.

If you're that guy, do you care what someone else out to shame you counts as "mature"? Thought so.

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