I haven’t always been anti-mainstream, and I know it isn’t something everyone who’s smart will necessarily come to right away, all at once or sadly even at all! Like anything, it’s a journey, dependant on who we are and where we’ve been. I had quite a journey myself, and continue to do so.
I use to eat the SAD (Standard American Diet), added fluoride and amalgam to my teeth, worked for a large company, went to college to get a typical education, had a typical big wedding, had a baby in a hospital, vaccinated, would have circumcised. . ., as well as was in the largest religion in this country, if not world. I listened to my Doctor, Dentist, the government and my pastor. In each case though, when I actually stopped to consider what I was doing or believing, and why I was following the crowd, I realized that it was like the old story about everyone jumping off of the cliff together. One would think that at least one would look over the cliff and say, “Hmm, I don’t think I’m going to follow the crowd.” It seems like it would be common sense. Maybe it’s because I have always had a large dose of common sense I’ve been told, but starting as a teen, I started to say, “I don’t think I’m going to follow the crowd.”
Most people do very little original research, or they follow the crowd in where they go to research. (i.e. going to government run websites to check out how safe something is that they are putting in your water or a dentist group’s website, or people hired by them, to hear about how safe mercury fillings are.) They usually follow the “authorities” advice, without even thinking or checking both sides of the matter out. They never question whether it is from an unbiased, (no money to gain from proving their point) scientific, and preferably worldwide source. Unfortunately, this lazy method of checking things out has been proven very unreliable in history. “If the blind lead the blind they’ll both fall in the ditch.”
When I see a minority in history, going away from the main thoughts and actions of the culture, I can see that they were often the one’s who were the brilliant, the free thinkers, the heretics, and the first to admit to or see the truth. Though that is often true of new thoughts in philosophy and religion as well as scientific discoveries, the minorities that are stubbornly sticking to old ways nowadays, are not as clear cut. . .and usually not to be pitied for any mocking they may get, as they have brought it on themselves. . .IMHO.
Sometimes for the sake of tradition, laziness or reputation, people feel it’s easier or safer to keep doing what they were taught, or looked into long ago (against all reason and advise now). I think of that old song, “It was good for my Father, it was good for my Mother. . .it’s good enough for me.” They connect it to their personal identity. So when new science comes in to replace their beliefs or practices, they take defense at the changes, and adamantly fight it. We have so much history of this happening in the realms of science and religion it’s nauseating! When something different was taught, (whether in science, practice, medicine or religion) the Authorities on the subject must have felt humiliated and dethroned and fought to personally discredit the individual(s) teaching it. (As if that has any bearing on what they have done or said. . .) Jesus was a perfect example of this in religion. He stood with the “sinners” and was a heretic to the religious leaders of his time, and yet, ironically it is his most sincere followers today that comprise the intolerant religious authority that he fought so hard against in his day. I believe if Jesus were here today, he would fit in better with the heretics of even his own religion, then with the ones in it just toeing the line and thoughtlessly following the self-righteous bullies of the culture.
“It is dangerous to be right in matters on which the established authorities are wrong” Voltaire said.