The Choice We Face

Our being psychologically worn down by the constant pressures of reasons and existential concerns results either in the need to rest and rejuvenate amidst such concerns OR to give in to the ones who assert unjust scapegoats, i.e. both pressures coming from mass society. That is the choice we face in a mass culture with no actual rest.

Mr. Trump (as an agent of the unjust) and Dr. Fauci (a representative of reason and existential concern) are good models. Both of these forces are relentless and wear down our individual psychological resources for dealing with our human conditions. But our circle of intimates, our friends and family, our churches and our communities, need to do their part too. Being “in” those communities should be an experience of rest and rejuvenation that allow us to be more resilient; often they aren’t.

This exhibits that if mass society is experienced as a force that wears us down as individuals, then our belonging to community should build us up. And the more we misplace our “building up” in mass society (by shopping or reading the news) the more worn down we will feel; the more we will be subject to totalitarian (far right) or bureaucratic (far left) control.In other words, the choice isn’t between right and left, it is a choice between constituting our private lives in community or in mass society.

Choosing to build up our communal constitution allows us to take on the arduous task of facing existential concerns with reason and hope without being worn down. Choosing mass society chooses the erosion of who we are.

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