Social Identity

Topic: Social Identity,

Richard: This social identity, which is otherwise known as a conscience (a moral/ethical and principled entity, with inculcated societal knowledge of ‘right’ and ‘wrong’), is overlaid upon the instinctual identity itself … and its associated personae consist of (for example):

1. A vocational identity as ‘employee’/‘employer’, ‘worker’/‘pensioner’, ‘junior/‘senior’ and so on.
2. A national identity as ‘English’, ‘American’, ‘Australian’ and etcetera.
3. A racial identity as ‘white’, ‘black’, ‘brown’ or whatever.
4. A religious/spiritual identity as a ‘Hindu’, a ‘Muslim’, a ‘Christian’, a ‘Buddhist’ ad infinitum.
5. A ideological identity as a ‘Capitalist’, a ‘Communist’, a ‘Monarchist’, a ‘Fascist’ and etcetera.
6. A political identity as a ‘Democrat’, a ‘Tory’, a ‘Republican’, a ‘Liberal’ and all the rest.
7. A family identity as ‘son’/‘daughter’, ‘brother’/‘sister’, ‘father’/‘mother’ and the whole raft of relatives.
8. A gender identity as ‘boy’/‘girl’, ‘man’/‘woman’.


Richard: A social identity is a psychological creation manufactured by society to act as a guardian over the wayward rudimentary self one was born with. All sentient beings are born with a biologically coded instinctive drive for physical survival which, when one is operating and functioning with a group of people, is potentially a danger to the survival of other group members. Hence the need for principles and morals and ethics to regulate the conduct of each person … with appropriate rewards and punishments to ensure compliance.

In a well-meant but ultimately short-sighted effort to prevent gaols from being filled to over-flowing, a social identity – a psychological guardian – is fabricated in an earnest endeavour to prevent the offences from happening in the first place. This ‘guardian’ is programmed with a set of values and charged with the role of acting as a conscience over the wayward self. A conscience is made up of a sure knowledge of what is Right or Wrong and Good or Bad … as determined by each society. By and large this enterprise has proved to be effective – only a small minority of citizens fail to behave in a socially acceptable manner.

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  • Your own best friend

    With no social identity to maintain and no social ladder to climb I am now free to set my own pace as to how I like to spend my time – except for the time that I sell for a living, in which case the pace is set by those who employ me.

  • Security

    [..] To defend the belief that this life is forever fatally flawed – defend to the point of idiocy – is actually a cowardly attempt to stay hidden inside ‘humanity’. To skulk behind a sick social contract is a desperate ploy to remain ‘human’. If one takes one’s intellectual ability back from the decrees of the cultured sophisticates – to which one has surrendered – one has taken a courageous step. One has cast oneself out of the biggest group there is … humanity. If one stays within the group, for its perceived safety and security, one is selling out to the system because of a pusillanimous character.

  • Naive Optimism

    [Richard]: ‘In 1980, ‘I’, the persona that I was, looked at the natural world and just knew that this enormous construct called the world – and the universe itself – was not ‘set up’ for us humans to be forever forlorn in with only scant moments of reprieve. ‘I’ realised there and then that it was not and could not ever be some ‘sick cosmic joke’ that humans all had to endure and ‘make the best of’. ‘I’ felt foolish that ‘I’ had believed for thirty two years that the ‘wisdom’ of the world ‘I’ had inherited – the real world that ‘I’ was born into – was set in stone. This foolish feeling allowed ‘me’ to get in touch with ‘my’ dormant naiveté, which is the closest thing one has that resembles actual innocence, and activate it with a naive enthusiasm to undo all the conditioning and brainwashing that ‘I’ had been subject to. Then when ‘I’ looked into myself and at all the people around and saw the sorrow of humankind ‘I’ could not stop. ‘I’ knew that ‘I’ had just devoted myself to the task of setting ‘myself’ and ‘humanity’ free … ‘I’ willingly dedicated my life to this most worthy cause. It is so exquisite to devote oneself to something whole-heartedly … the ‘boots and all’ approach ‘I’ called it then!’

  • Meaning of Life

    PETER: If ‘I’ seek meaning for ‘my’ life then narcissism can be the only result – and the long history of the famed spiritual search attests to this fact. If ‘I’ simply reject the traditional meanings of life then meaninglessness aka nihilism can be the only result and this seems to be where U.G. Krishnamurti has ended up.

  • Instinctual Treadmill
  • Genetic Identity
    Social Identity, which is overlaid on top of ‘being’
  • Basic Resentment

    But then again that’s the challenge intrinsic to the process of actualism – to do something radically different to what everyone else has been biologically programmed to do and socially conditioned to think and feel, to be sensible in that one obeys the laws and conforms to societal protocols yet be a rebel in that one devotes one’s life to not only breaking free from the crowd but to become actually free of the human condition itself.

  • Autonomy

    The two common human reactions can be crudely summarized as fight or flight – assertiveness, standing up for ‘my’ rights, making ‘my’ point, demanding justice, etc. are in the fight ⚔️ category and being humble, surrendering ‘my’ will, being grateful, turning the other cheek, being a pacifist, etc. are reactions in the flight 🏃 category. These typical reactions are prevalent both in the spiritual world and the real world and are socially instilled and/or instinctually programmed.

    The way of becoming actually free is both simple and practical. One starts by dismantling the shadowy social identity which has been overlaid, from birth onward, on top of the innate self until one is virtually free from all the social mores and psittacisms (those mechanical repetitions of previously received ideas or images, reflecting neither apperception nor autonomous reasoning). One can be virtually free from all the beliefs, ideas, values, theories, truths, customs, traditions, ideals, superstitions and all the other schemes and dreams. One can become aware of all the socialisation, of all the conditioning, of all the programming, of all the methods and techniques which were used to produce what one feels and thus thinks oneself to be: a wayward identity careering around in confusion and illusion. A ‘mature adult’ is actually a lost, lonely, frightened and very cunning entity. However, it is never too late to start in on uncovering and discovering what one actually is.

  • Actualism Method

    RESPONDENT: Can someone please list the laws contained within the method that enable one to minimise the social identity and the instinctual passions?