What is Individuality? Individuality is the capacity to express one's true, unique nature in deed and thought. It is the expression of what one deems to be truth, regardless of what others believe.
How does Individuality develop? How can it be fostered? It is fostered by knowing our true selves; of a longing for the truth of things, not merely the commonly accepted; by rigorous introspection of one's attachments and attitudes, as opposed to the truth of a matter; of an outflowing of creative capacity unfettered by common standards, approval, or social convention.
What is the relationship between Individuality and-
· Creativity? Individuality expresses as ultimate creativity because it reflects a unique slant on things; the capacity to create something fresh and new in the world.
· Original thinking? Individuality compels original thinking, as we are willing to explore that which has not been done before. It opens us up to infinite possibility.
· Leadership? Individuality creates fresh leadership. During the Cuban Missile, Crisis Kennedy asked his advisors to think of a fresh approach in solving the problem, which they did, and thereby at the last minute resolved a potential global catastrophe.
· Genius? If we are truly individual, we will explore that which has not been explored before. Our insights in that new field will tend to be fully original, compelling others to consider us to be genius in that area.
· Entrepreneurship? Individuality will compel us to take up new types of undertakings that have never existed before. This creates vast opportunities for us, as we are there first. Steve Jobs and Apple, from its earliest days onward, is an obvious example.
· Freedom & democracy? Individuality is freedom in the true sense. What good is it to be free if we just act like the herd? The term "liberty" expresses this freedom to be a true, unique individual. It is a step beyond "freedom." Society that fosters liberty in this sense advances individuality.
· Education? True individuality would compel a young person to seek knowledge in areas he or she is truly interested in. That knowledge would in effect reinforce and expand the individuality, leading to great creative results in life. Individuality would focus on the needs of the individual child, person not the mass of education. It would look into the soul needs of each person.
· Culture? Culture would be enriched and expanded through greater individuality. We would see new forms of culture, new ways of relating to society and life. Life would become fuller, more interesting, more dynamic, with new ways of looking at things, and sharing of them in individual and collective experience.
· Romantic love? More types of love would open up aside from the forms we have known so far. There would be more gradations and shadings of types of love than what we know now; just as romantic love, a new shading that only blossomed in the last 750 years, particularly the last 200, emerged. Romantic relationships would thus become even more dynamic.
· Spirituality? Individuality would take us far beyond the teachings of religion to an essential spirituality, as we would explore all dimensions of existence, of reality, of the spiritual dimension, unfettered by the social imperative. Individuality would also lead to unique, direct experiences of the spiritual dimension of life.
What is the relationship between the development of Individuality and the development of Society? Society would become more dynamic, more enriched, more open minded. Society would thus be energized to no end.
Is humanity becoming more individualistic? If so, why? What is the significance? Yes, of course. Just look at the Internet. With that knowledge, any person can become anything he or she wishes to be. There is also an opposite movement to conformity, but then true individuality would see through it, compelling one to act based on one's conscience, one's unique perspective, and creative capacity.
Can Individuality be distinguished from and develop without increasing egocentrism and selfishness? Individuality is not the same as egotism, rebelliousness, and other destructive forms. Real individuality comes from Self, which is in touch with higher things in life. The rebel expresses his faux-individuality by being truculent for its own sake. Even if that which he rebels against is resolved, he will still rebel because rebellion is all that he knows. Ego is not individuality; it is separateness that does not want to know the full truth of things, and thereby be unique.
Is it possible to develop individuality in a manner compatible with the maximum progress for society as a whole? Yes, there is a balance between individuality and social cooperation. When we become truly individual, we also perceive the need for harmony with other things and individuals. As we make progress through our individuality, so does society. As society allows for maximum individuality, we thrive as individuals.