Loyalty & Conformity: Friends vs. Ideas – Part I

–Note: Keep in mind that this is the recollection of personally experienced things about friends and much of it is just that: personal.

That is to say that it includes seemingly minor things i.e. friend-drama, which are major when experienced by the person experiencing them or anyone else who has had similar experiences, but might seem menial to anyone else.

What’s interesting about this kind of blog entry though I think, is that one can see philosophical principles in action, and as they might apply to their own life or anybody’s for that matter, but in a practical, everyday-philosophy sort of way.–

Friends are tricky, and point of view between friends is even trickier.

This is in spite of everything but one rule a person can go by to cross-reference through all the different angles. This rule is called ‘a convergence of evidence.’

The COE (convergence of evidence) depends on two rules in itself:

1) It must be from as many sources as possible, and those sources must be relatively independent of each other.

2) Any observation which remains provisionally true (as close as possible to the most likelihood) must run nearly across the board as a repeatable common denominator to those instances.

Such is the basis of all inductive thought.

In seeing yet another friend plunge into the depths subjectivism*, revealing that yet again, unspoken social rules trump loyalty to objective ideas–I have written yet another friend off. That is, I wrote him an email disbanding our relationship, overnight.

(*Subjectivism is a moral philosophy which claims that man can gain no ultimate knowledge of the reality in which he lives. It is crucial to point out that in contemporary living, this is applied to just about everything more abstractly philosophical.)

This ‘ostracizing’ of one former friend or another may seem a bit ‘extreme’ to most, especially these days, but I have to assure myself of its purpose, which I will disclose in a moment…

First off though, why is it that moral condemnation should be practiced? Does it work?

The question: ‘does it work?’ I should add, I is context sensitive:

That is, it doesn’t really hold up in ‘actuality’ since, moral condemnation on actual terms doesn’t necessarily do much good, especially within the socio-moral context we live in which it pretty much guarantees the repetition of the same behavior.

So, if some friend is doing something you don’t like, that is, clashes highly with one’s moral principles, what is one to do?

I have such situations arise all the time since my philosophy conflicts so highly with that of any given person from just about any given society on Earth today, it seems.

Recently a friend of mine phoned in to tell another friend of mine, that he was ‘disappointed in him’ due to his ‘drunkenness’ and ‘deriding to females’ type of behavior at HIS (the accuser’s) party.’

I know for a fact that this friend has gotten a bit carried away at get togethers, but never have I heard anything resembling being ‘out of hand.’ I remember him being passed out in about every instance I can think of that I have witnessed first hand, and multiple people confirm nothing that contradicts that.

Continued Tomorrow in Part II…


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4 thoughts on “Loyalty & Conformity: Friends vs. Ideas – Part I

  1. I’ve never much understood why it is people are so fearful of burning bridges—in fact, I think it is one of the solutions that has the possibility of being clean cut rather than an absolute mess (depending on the situation of course).

    As far as I’m concerned however, morality has little to do with it; I consider it to be hypocritical to even pretend that there is such a thing, on ANY level. Even my own personal beliefs rarely are ever the cause of the severing of friendship. And I’ve severed quite a few.

    I think that we limit ourselves, even by simply judging others on the basis of what we personally believe is right and just. Everyone has their reasons, and as separate people we can’t always know them. I think that often that leads people to make the wrong conclusions and consequently the wrong choices (not that I’m saying you made the wrong decision, as I’m not there and I don’t know the situation to begin with…).

    But then again I’m on the verge of being a complete nihilist as far as life is concerned. What would I know.

  2. Well, I think , on one hand you are right in pointing out that it DOES serve a purpose to burn bridges and I applaud that since the politically correct is the new conformist culture.

    However, since morality is a code of concepts to guide one’s actions, on what criteria would you burn a bridge or sever a tie? You had a criteria, and that my friend, IS a morality.

  3. Most reasons would be unconsciously influenced by whatever morality I believe in. Even mental pain would be, as we each are sesitive to certain things (and they would be things that went against what we believed was right for one human being to do to another), and what might hurt one person may not even phase another or prove enough to end a friendship.

    Everything we do is biased, and if you wanted to get technical, then the reasons I am no longer friends with people are also clearly biased, however, they have nothing to do with my morality. I do not think the people “wronged” me. I was not ending the frienships to pay them back or to do anything really. I simply…got bored.

    I think you’re being a bit too general with morality, though I might just be misinterpreting what you wrote—keep that in mind. It’s only morality if you in a sense, are imposing your ideas on someone else, i.e. ending a friendship because of your own standards of what is “acceptable” of other people. Meaning they are doing something that offends your ideas of right and wrong. Nobody offended me, and they never went “against my morals”. I just decided at the time that friendships in general were not something I was interested in pursuing any longer.

  4. I agree with lucinlachance on one statement. One can get rid of a friend having nothing to do with moral reasons. Like they become annoying, boring, strange, inconvenient, lack of humor, humor of a different persuasion, etc. However, to agree with the author, most people give up relationships for moral reasons, which is perfectly rational. Author, you are not alone in thinking that philosophy conflicts so highly with that of any given person. Most humans feel that way. AND-want to feel that way. It makes us feel special, unique, smart, etc. We all want to feel as though we are “going somewhere” contributing to oneself, etc. Although you think that you are in the minority, luckily there are many who think like you, relate to you, and practice your beliefs. (not to say that I know how you think specifically but that we are limited as people as to the extent are brains are different from each other, although there are some exceptions like the mentally ill.)Otherwise, many in the past have “thought” like you and will “think” like you in the future. It is a good thing too, because one does not want to feel completely alone in their journey to discovery, although, trashing a friend, now and then, is quite good! Good luck, sounds like you are on the right track.

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