Psychological Pluralism- Why Everyone Is A Hypocrite.

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“The road to power is paved with hypocrisy”
 – Frank Underwood

The one human trait I used to hate most profoundly was hypocrisy. Notice how I mention ‘used to’? It is because one random day, out of nowhere, I had an epiphany. How can I justify the term hypocrisy, when I myself do not possess a singular string of thought? Do you? When we sit and gather all our ideas to decide on something, are we not faced by contradictions, fallacies and comparisons? This in turn makes me think, do all the quotes about being ‘you’ even matter. Because I can’t possibly believe that I am contained of a singular self. No. Both you and I possess an internal pluralism. For every particular thought in your mind is not derived from a single source or even based on a single ideology. Within you, there are, for the lack of a better word, multiple ‘yous’. There is no singular identity we possess. Instead it is a congregation of multiple identities that regularly clash with each other. This is what gives rise to the term ‘Hypocrisy’- the practice of claiming to have higher standards or more noble beliefs than is the case. In layman terms, when you criticize your friend for checking in at Facebook, and then go ahead and do the same the very next day, you theoretically become a hypocrite. But what I believe is that in each of the two cases, a different identity from your multiple identities rose above the others. Most of us fail to realize this because of the basic human attribute of only acknowledging the winner or of only accepting the results. At a particular time, we only confirm the identity that won, every other voice fades into the background. And it is not just two voices- the good and the bad, the pros and the cons, the positive and the negative. Blacks and Whites do not exist; it’s multiple non-uniform shades of grey. One overpowers the others, and becomes you. At different times, you are different versions of yourself. If all of your psychological identities start to agree with each other, you become too much of an idealist, and as the term itself suggests, no man can really be a perfect idealist. We can try, and in fact I persist that we should. For as we strive for singularity in thought, we tend to detach ourselves from all our psychological identities and observe them from a distance. This allows us to acknowledge not just the winner, but hand out a participation certificate to every identity. As we move further and further away from this boardroom-meeting between our identities, our view becomes more and more eternal. And with this eagle vision, we can explore each and every nook and cranny, and extract any hidden/suppressed identities of ourselves. Who knows how this might change our principles and beliefs. With every step that we take into this direction, our thinking becomes more logical and more consistent, and we eliminate or at least reduce everyday hypocrisy.

As I read what I have written, I realize one might question how simple I’m making it look. With so many thoughts/media/content being thrown at you every second, how can you comprehend each and every one of them and align them across a single straight line? This is a question for learned men and women, and unfortunately I don’t happen to be one. However, I need you to know that a voice within me fights the other on the toughness of this path of ‘singularity in thought’. But the very fact that I can at least acknowledge two aspects of this argument, somehow gives me comfort. There are still multiple aspects to be found, analysed and channelled into a singular self. In every thought, I struggle with the multiple psychological identities that exist within me, and maybe so do you. Each day I strive towards singularity, and so should you. I might overcome this pluralism one day, but as of today I am a hypocrite. But then again, I am pretty sure, so are you!

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5 thoughts on “Psychological Pluralism- Why Everyone Is A Hypocrite.

  1. Brilliant.
    I believe that every person is shaped by their experiences. To believe you are, as a human, a single entity is a farce! As you said, we can aspire for a singular thread of thought, but very few exist who can actually boast of it. Till the time we all can, all hail hypocrisy.
    PS: I have an article along the same lines in the works!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. This is excellent, Tushant!
    I specially like how you didn’t stress on how people (excluding yourself) are all hypocrites and how bad that is and how it should be changed, and didn’t indulge in self pity and how everyone (including yourself) is a hypocrite and how it can never be changed. Those two blacks and whites are all people talk about. I really like the part where you described a person being different versions or himself/herself at different times.
    And, I absolutely love how you ended it. Acknowledging where we are, knowing where to reach and the difficulty that the journey entails, and striving towards it nonetheless… that’s the best we can do.
    Flawlessly structured piece, this!

    Liked by 2 people

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