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The Stainless Steel Rat's LiveJournal

The Rat who is made of Stainless Steel

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BB Piano
Perhaps the problem with LiveJournal, and more so secured posts, is that it's too easy to whinge and be maudlin. I have to be in a particularly bad mood to go over to Twitter, or more so Facebook and do the same thing. There I feel I have to maintain a public face, with a large group of unfiltered friends.

This connects to something that I discussed with novemberbug over at Twitter, that is the issue of changes to society. Jon Ronson had tweeted that the reason we're all so stressed, much more than ever before, is due to the anxiety inducing society we live in (technically I believe he was quoting a friend of his). I'm not so sure this is the reason. Surely life only a hundred years ago must have been much more stressful for the majority of people.

I suspect the reason is our lack of tribal culture, at least in the First World and a lot of other countries (which I'll just subsume into the term "First World", for simplicity). I believe it's a basic human need to be loved and supported by other people, as much as I think some of us try and deny it. Not just a partner and parents, but the extended family and friends as well.

In the inherently closely knitted structure of a tribal system you would get that love and support. The reverse has happened though in the First World. Now we have a much more fragmented society, that is not very tribal. Conversely though you see people forming tribes of a fashion, with friends and family members, of which they can often be very protective of others joining, a clique in a way. Yet I suspect for a lot of people they don't have that, hence the anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues.

So could it be that forming these huge or even medium sized population centres, where the individual or more so the tribe is lost, is the central issue with First World society?

Or maybe I just woke up too early. Or maybe sociologists came to this conclusion decades ago. Or maybe the point was that the greater society has us living in fear over our perceived inadequacies, more so than ever before. Either way I think I'll post a badly worded poll about it.