View Poll Results: Do you need to belong to a group to feel a sense of identity?

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  • yes

    4 15.38%
  • no

    19 73.08%
  • I am not sure.

    3 11.54%
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Thread: Do you need to belong?

  1. #21
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    Re: Do you need to belong?

    Quote Originally Posted by ecofarm View Post
    Being a committed part of something larger than oneself is a major step in personal development. It goes beyond self awareness and into self actualization and realization.

    For most people the first time this happens is kids, but there are other epiphanies in people's lives that help them "find their niche".
    I mostly agree with the point, but not entirely.

    For example, I tend to view myself primarily as megaprogman (substituted for my real name of course). As megaprogman, I believe x, y, and z are the best thing for humanity, my country, my state, my community, my family, my church, or whatever other social group I happen to belong to. However, my primary self identification is still me. Ultimately, I decide on what is right and wrong for me and how I choose to interact with others and I don't particularly care if others like it or not (with the exception being that I tend to need people to react a certain way to get a job done), because I think its the best thing I have come up with so far and I am the one who has to answer for myself in the end. (This doesn't mean I am an asshole or anything, in fact, I am quite popular with a lot of people and tend to be a natural leader, even though I am an introvert. Primarily because of my kindness and the fact that I care about the people around me, but my kindness is ultimately my choice because it makes me happy to see other people being happy).

    Another person may come along and say I am primarily a Christian, Muslim, Liberal, Conservative, Rotery Club Member, Shriner, LARP gamer, or whatever. Because my primary self identification is with whatever group, I tend to look to them for my views, internal moral constructs, vision, etc.

    I see advantages and disadvantages to either approach and I don't wish to judge which one is better, because each approach has their own merits. However, I am curious where people lie.

    Ultimately, I think the reason I am asking this question is that my son was diagnosed with Aspergers recently and I got to thinking about my own life and I display many of the same traits he does, however, I have studied people long enough to figure out how to interact with them. So I am curious to see how the rest of the world is, I guess to see if I am normal or not. (not that I want to be if I am not, I am quite happy with who I am).
    Last edited by tacomancer; 05-26-11 at 08:59 AM.

  2. #22
    Sage

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    Re: Do you need to belong?

    Quote Originally Posted by megaprogman View Post
    Do you need to belong to a group to feel a sense of identity? Anything from a local church group to being a part of one's country or culture. This has nothing to do with me personally, I am just curious to see the results.





    (in fact, I tend to dislike identity based groups rather strongly because I have yet to find one that I agree with completely)
    Interesting ??
    I think all of us do, to some extent.
    But I am, IMO, too "different" to belong to any particular group, including religious ones.

  3. #23
    global liberation

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    Re: Do you need to belong?

    Quote Originally Posted by megaprogman View Post
    whatever other social group I happen to belong to... my primary self identification is still me... Another person may come along and say I am primarily a Christian, Muslim, Liberal, Conservative, Rotery Club Member, Shriner, LARP gamer, or whatever. Because my primary self identification is with whatever group, I tend to look to them for my views, internal moral constructs, vision, etc... So I am curious to see how the rest of the world is, I guess to see if I am normal or not. (not that I want to be if I am not, I am quite happy with who I am).
    Quote Originally Posted by earthworm View Post
    Interesting ??
    I think all of us do, to some extent.
    But I am, IMO, too "different" to belong to any particular group, including religious ones.
    The beginning letter is as follows:
    Dear Mr. Vernon, we accept the fact that we had to sacrifice a whole Saturday in detention for whatever it was that we did wrong...and what we did was wrong, but we think you're crazy to make us write this essay telling you who we think we are. What do you care? You see us as you want to see us... in the simplest terms and the most convenient definitions. You see us as a brain, an athlete, a basket case, a princess and a criminal. Correct? That's the way we saw each other at seven o'clock this morning. We were brainwashed.

    The end letter is as follows:
    Dear Mr. Vernon, we accept the fact that we had to sacrifice a whole Saturday in detention for whatever it was we did wrong...but we think you're crazy to make us write an essay telling you who we think we are. You see us as you want to see us... In the simplest terms and the most convenient definitions. But what we found out is that each one of us is a brain... Andrew Clark: ...and an athlete... Allison Reynolds: ...and a basket case... Claire Standish: ...a princess... John Bender: ...and a criminal... Brian Johnson: Does that answer your question?
    Sincerely yours, the Breakfast Club.
    The Breakfast Club - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    I'm a warrior philosopher. Sometimes an accidental poet. I dream lucid. I self-realize.
    Last edited by ecofarm; 05-26-11 at 09:16 AM.

  4. #24
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    Re: Do you need to belong?

    I think everybody is the sum of more than just one thing. It's the whole "are you a gay man, or a man who happens to be gay?". And you can substitute any group in there. I tend to believe we are all the latter, meaning we are people who happen to be "x". Some people just put more value on a certain aspect of their lives and let it define them like the former part of my example.
    "Loyalty only matters when there's a hundred reasons not to be-" Gen. Mattis

  5. #25
    Dungeon Master
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    Re: Do you need to belong?

    Quote Originally Posted by spud_meister View Post


    *chuckle*

    Yes, my friends are always within arm's reach.

    (ok, this max of 5 images rule is a pain in the ass)
    The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.
    Mahatma Gandhi


  6. #26
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    Re: Do you need to belong?

    Quote Originally Posted by megaprogman View Post
    Do you need to belong to a group to feel a sense of identity? Anything from a local church group to being a part of one's country or culture. This has nothing to do with me personally, I am just curious to see the results.





    (in fact, I tend to dislike identity based groups rather strongly because I have yet to find one that I agree with completely)
    I have a need to belong that is so great I actually looked at the poll results before I voted.


  7. #27
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    Re: Do you need to belong?

    Quote Originally Posted by WI Crippler View Post
    I think everybody is the sum of more than just one thing. It's the whole "are you a gay man, or a man who happens to be gay?". And you can substitute any group in there. I tend to believe we are all the latter, meaning we are people who happen to be "x". Some people just put more value on a certain aspect of their lives and let it define them like the former part of my example.
    I'm just a man who happens.

  8. #28
    free market communist
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    Re: Do you need to belong?

    I wouldn't join any group that would have me for a member.


    I guess that makes me a Marxist.
    "you're better off on Stormfront discussing how evil brown men are taking innocent white flowers." Infinite Chaos

  9. #29
    Dungeon Master
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    Re: Do you need to belong?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tucker Case View Post
    I have a need to belong that is so great I actually looked at the poll results before I voted.

    Well that's a good point. Only two of us actually chose the least popular poll choice, showing that we're more individuals then all y'all. LOL
    The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.
    Mahatma Gandhi


  10. #30
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    Re: Do you need to belong?

    Quote Originally Posted by Befuddled_Stoner View Post
    Everyone builds their identity in relationship to the groups around them, it’s impossible to do otherwise. Nations, states, cities, schools, social cliques, sports teams, groups based around hobbies and interests, etc.…You establish who and what you are by which of those groups you support or oppose (however fanatically or apathetically). You can no more be free of all groups’ influence than you can be free of the gravity of the sun and the moon.

    Not hanging your identity on an association with any particular group (family, religion, political parties, sports teams, academic groups, whatever) let’s your self-esteem fall down the stairs without any hand-holds to catch on the way down. People use their affiliation with groups to draw strength and bolster their self-image. When everything falls apart around you, what are the cornerstones you use to rebuild your life? The values you’ve taken from the groups around you and woven into your identity.

    Yeah, this can be taken to unhealthy extremes, just look at all the self-important hyper-partisans calcified into their views in defiance of logic and fact. But the other end of the spectrum is feeling an apathetic blah towards everything (yourself included!). Wouldn’t want to over-correct when trying to avoid their negative example, now would you?

    Me? I’m ****ed up in the head with an Avoidant Personality Disorder. I avoid people (duh) out of anxiety and shyness, which naturally leads to weakened bonds of affiliation. Yes, I (like any other human) need to belong with others; not belonging is a mark of vulnerability and weakness.
    This is an excellent post. Double thanks. You're absolutely right. The need to associate and identify with others, to form bonds, is in our genes.

    If you know you're ****ed up in the head, Befuddled, you can't be that ****ed up in the head. I'm glad for that.
    The devil whispered in my ear, "You cannot withstand the storm." I whispered back, "I am ​the storm."

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