Free Minds Avoid Movements

Open inquiry and free, fearless thinking can lead to many different questions.

Some of these questions put you in the company of people forming movements. It can be useful to find sources of information and conversation among movements. But if you fully join, your thinking gets less free. The open inquiry that led you there gets stagnant. Too many assumptions are shared. Defensiveness against the outside world or forces the movement seeks to challenge creates mental rigidity, stubbornness, and worst of all, a sense of something to lose, which leads to fear.

Fear is a mind melter and collectivism kills. Movements tend toward both.

Stay free. Don’t join movements. Don’t oppose them either. You needn’t fear or fight a movement any more than you need to join it. Engage the people and ideas that bring you value, ignore those that don’t. Whether or not they group themselves into a movement. Talk to individuals you enjoy, attend events you like. They may label you as one of them or banish you as a heretic. It doesn’t matter either way.

Keep living and thinking freely. Movements want you to need them. That makes their incentives bad for your autonomy and actualization. They may help for parts of your journey, but you’ve got to be bigger than any movement to continue to grow.

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Isaac Morehouse is the founder and CEO of Praxis, an awesome startup apprenticeship program. He is dedicated to the relentless pursuit of freedom. He’s written some books, done some podcasting, and is always experimenting with self-directed living and learning. When he’s not with his wife and kids or building his company, he can be found smoking cigars, playing guitars, singing, reading, writing, getting angry watching sports teams from his home state of Michigan, or enjoying the beach.