Are we really a social beings?
You know when people always say that “we are humans, we are a social beings, we need one another, it is just in our nature to need one another”, all of this kind of statement always make it seems like we have to be a social being, to always rely on one another, whatever we do, we can’t avoid the fact that we need one another, because it is just what life as humans is, because it is just what it is to live as a social beings, to be humans.
But do we really need one another?
All of this philosophical thought that claims we can’t live alone, we always need one another, is to me, not entirely true. What I have just said is very controversial, and people will just assume that I’m a loner or I’m just depressed or anything like that, well let me tell you this, I’m not. I just think that people don’t always need one another, we do to some extent, but not everyone need one another in every day life. Some people like to spend time alone, or could even survive not talking to anyone for days or weeks or months, and nothing is wrong with that, some people just have no time to deal with unnecessary drama that ‘human interactions’ tends to bring. It does not mean that this person, is a freak, it just means that they actually enjoy their own peace, or they feel more peaceful being alone than being with other people.
What about monk?
Monk tends to spend time on its own, they don’t even talk when they meditate, sometimes they spend days or weeks or months just meditate and not talking to anyone. I can only imagine how peaceful it might be. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not an expert or anything, I don’t really know how monk live their life, as far as I’m concerned, I could be entirely wrong. But I just think that if its true, if monk could survive being on its own, to meditate for whatever long it takes, then it challenges the claims that all humans are social beings. Because how can we claim “all humans” are social beings when there are just so many people in the world, I don’t know how many billions that is, but I can only imagine there are so many people, that we can’t just categorized them into one single definition, as ‘social beings’.
There are just so many people in the world that putting everyone in one category as ‘social beings’ might not be accurately true
Let me emphasized here that I’m not an expert on this and I could be entirely wrong, but I just think that it is not in our place to classify everyone as social beings, and I don’t think the claim is justifiable. The claim that ‘we need each other’ has been excessively used in many unnecessary situation. I don’t want to get to deep into it because it would be a very long discussion, but I just want to open the possibility that the claims that we humans are social beings and therefore need one another, could be, to some extent, not entirely true. Some people might feel so much better being on their own and can survive without having human interaction.
In the non-extreme way, at least not every human beings need to have deep interaction with other people
Some people just have normal day to day interaction with other people, like interaction with people at work, or interaction with people in the supermarket, but they don’t need deep interaction with human beings in their everyday life. I think this case happens a lot, especially in the 21st century when people tend to be more individualistic than before. I personally think there is nothing wrong for being individualistic. After all, we only can save other people if we can save ourselves. I think it’s more on our human nature, ‘to survive’, than to be a ‘social beings’, because sometimes, to survive means to sacrifice our needs to be a social beings. If one wins over the other then it means our needs to survive is higher than our needs to interact with other people. In this case, not everyone is social beings.
Again, I want to emphasized that I’m not an expert and I could be entirely wrong, but I just want to express my opinion that saying all human beings are ‘social beings’ seems very debatable to me. Firstly, I think there are so many people in this world that categorizing everyone into one category is just too much. Secondly, there are cases where people don’t interact with each other for certain period of times and still live peacefully. Of course it is just the minority of people that could live peacefully without having to interact with each other. But if there are people that could live peacefully without interaction with other human beings, it undermines the claim that all humans are ‘social beings’. Thirdly, if humans instinct to survive is higher than their needs to interact with other people, then, not everyone is social beings. When people face a situation that related to their survival, whatever it takes, no matter what cost it would be, their survival will come first. If this is true, if this is the case, people could sacrifice their needs to be social being, and shift it to entirely the other way around, by not being a ‘social beings’.
Despite all this …
Eventually, I’m not an expert, and I have no evidence in what I have just written in this blog. I just want to express my opinion and what I think at this moment. I need more research before I can challenge the statement that all human beings are social beings, and I definitely need more understanding on the theory itself. I just think that there is a possibility that the claim is not entirely true. As Karl Popper said, “you have to be open to the idea that your beliefs might be false – because that is the only way that holding onto them can really mean anything”.
“Whenever a theory appears to you as the only possible one, take this as a sign that you have neither understood the theory nor the problem which it was intended to solve.”– Karl Popper –