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View Poll Results: How do you feel about tradition and custom?

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  • I follow customs and traditions as I want to please others

    4 11.76%
  • I follow traditions and customs because they're there to be observed

    0 0%
  • I just do whatever I feel like; if I do it I do it, if I don't I don't

    13 38.24%
  • I follow traditions and customs only if they make sense to me

    17 50.00%
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  1. #11
    Senior Member INTJMom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NoahFence View Post
    ...
    "How are you?"
    "Fine."

    Grrrr...translation:

    "I acknowledge your presence."
    "I acknowledge yours as well."
    tee-hee

  2. #12
    Senior Member substitute's Avatar
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    Uh-oh, now you've done it. You've forced me to use Si!!

    I had to fight all my life for the right to exist as the person I am, against social forces that wanted to obliterate me. Therefore, I cannot bear to think of things being obliterated. I've always had flaws, but so has everyone - I had good points too, and I had to fight for the right and the opportunity to prove and show those good points to the world, and to contribute positively to society as myself.

    This experience has given me a fairly special view of traditions and customs. Sometimes, though they make no sense to me, so long as they don't actually hurt anyone, I'll respect them and even observe them, simply to save them from obliteration. Sometimes, things get lost in the mists of time, meanings of things get lost but their external manifestations remain in these traditions. If those traditions are kept and observed even through the time when they don't make sense, it could be that a discovery will be made, perhaps some archaeologist will dig something up that will shed new light on those traditions and make them mean something again, and the full richness of their meaning and use can be enjoyed once again by a new generation of people.

    But if everyone had stopped observing them when they no longer made sense, they would've been obliterated and when the archaeologist dug the thing up, they'd have just had some piece of text or a picture or a pot or something that they wouldn't be able to know the full significance of, not being able to put it together with the 'actions'.

    Imagine if the actions of the Hokey Cokey became lost due to songs with actions going out of fashion for a few generations. You'd just be left with a lame song that was no fun. But if everyone still kept passing it down to their kids, at some point someone might find a book that had all the actions described in it, people would rediscover them and all the fun you can have 'performing' the song with a group. The whole thing would come together again.

    Imagine now that it wasn't the Hokey Cokey, but something more philosophical, something really deep and mystical.

    But even without the true origin or meaning being known, participating in customs, rituals or traditions that you know go back a long way in your community can help people feel connected to their ancestors, give a sense of continuity and meaning in that way. So they're still not useless.

    To tie it all in with my experience, I guess I'm saying that if something has encoded in it some property or function that can be beneficial or enjoyable or meaningful, I think it should be allowed to continue to exist even if at the present time, most people are unable to see its true worth.

    Phew... that's enough for me. I mean I know I've worked on my Si a lot but even so, that'll do!
    Ils se d�merdent, les mecs: trop bon, trop con..................................MY BLOG!

    "When it all comes down to dust
    I will kill you if I must
    I will help you if I can" - Leonard Cohen

  3. #13
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    This reminds me of an experience I had in Zambia once. Just let me tell it and I'll leave y'all alone to carry on without my rambling - it's relevant, I promise.

    In the village where I was staying there was a pole with a bell on the top, and at midday every day a boy would go out and ring it, three times - pause - three times - pause - three times - pause - nine times. Some people might recognize what it was already, but this boy didn't and nobody in the village did. This was a remote village in the region of Kitwe. Nobody could remember why they rang the bell like that, but they all just said that it had 'always' been done. An old man told me his great grandmother had told him the bell was always rung for as long as she could remember.

    Now of course this was the Angelus. Many years ago, Anglican missionaries had gone out there and taught them the Angelus and established its observation at midday every day. But after the colonial period ended and most of the English speaking priests left and the ones still there had different jobs to do, the memory faded and nobody was taught to say the prayer when the bell rang - all anyone remembered was that this bell had to ring in this way at this time every day.

    So I told the boy what it was, and taught him the prayer and taught him what it meant. He ran and told his mom and she brought her other children and her husband to me and asked me to teach them. All the rest of that day and the following morning people were coming up to me and asking me to teach them about the bell, and when I went to the bell the next day I saw a crowd of people standing there and saying the Angelus. By the fourth day, they were singing it in traditional African harmony, clapping their hands and really enjoying themselves.

    If people hadn't kept ringing the bell 'for no reason' for all those years, I wouldn't have had that wonderful way to bond with the people in that village, and they might never have learned the Angelus again.
    Ils se d�merdent, les mecs: trop bon, trop con..................................MY BLOG!

    "When it all comes down to dust
    I will kill you if I must
    I will help you if I can" - Leonard Cohen

  4. #14
    `~~Philosoflying~~` SillySapienne's Avatar
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    I don't mind traditions and customs, and from an observational point of view find them to often be quite interesting.

  5. #15

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    I don't mind traditions and customs, even if they don't serve a particular function anymore. I think some of them are silly, like insisting on turkey for dinner every Thanksgiving, and I'll rebel against them. But largely I feel that they serve to bring people together and foster a sense of history. I tend to think that people who dislike tradition or even feel vitriol toward it are trying to take the humanity out of humans. We are social animals, and not ruthless computers, and we aren't going to make the most "logical" decision all the time.

  6. #16
    Luctor et emergo Ezra's Avatar
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    Right, the reason I did this poll was to see the proportional representation of Keirsey's temperaments on this forum.

    I can derive that there are plenty of NTs (not surprised) and SPs, a few NFs, and no SJs. These results could be down to the way I phrased the options, but I tried to phrase each one to roughly apply to the mentality of the different temperaments (you should be able to work out which ones are which). Any feedback about the options and how I might rephrase them would help me in future, because I could make a better poll accurately representing the temperament population.

    OTR, I thought the NF one was a bit shit. I'm surprised anyone voted for that actually. That could easily have been an SJ one.

  7. #17
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ezra View Post
    Right, the reason I did this poll was to see the proportional representation of Keirsey's temperaments on this forum.

    I can derive that there are plenty of NTs (not surprised) and SPs, a few NFs, and no SJs. These results could be down to the way I phrased the options, but I tried to phrase each one to roughly apply to the mentality of the different temperaments (you should be able to work out which ones are which). Any feedback about the options and how I might rephrase them would help me in future, because I could make a better poll accurately representing the temperament population.

    OTR, I thought the NF one was a bit shit. I'm surprised anyone voted for that actually. That could easily have been an SJ one.
    Well, actually, most members didn't vote.

    For NF, I think "I follow traditions when they are beneficial to people" might have been better. Because I would never follow a tradition that didn't make anyone feel better. So I never follow traditions when I'm on my own, but I do follow them when others expect me to, and it doesn't hurt anyone. I would resist a tradition if I felt it could be harmful in the long run, though.

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