Personal and Group Formation as a Prerequisite and Consequence of Workplace

Published: 2021-09-14 21:35:08
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Category: Social Issues

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Personal and Group Formation as a Prerequisite and Consequence of Workplace
Social Rituals
The need to categorize the world, personal and group experience, and how
individuals and groups move through life plays an important part of the human condition.
Despite the vast array of cultural differences found throughout the world and through
time, this cognitive capacity for orderly categorization of the environment most
pervasively defines what it means to be human. And a central feature that characterizes
this most basic of human process is the creation of "identity." This is as important at the
level of the individual as it is at the level of humanity in general. The primal
differentiation between the "self" and the "other" provides the basis for navigation in the
social world, and is a prime requisite for any theory of true democracy. With a firm grasp
of what constitutes the "self," this identity may then be used to enter into agreements and
accords, as well as involve the individual in the everyday negotiations through which are
created our conceptions of the world in which we live, and consequently, the actions
available to the individual and the group in the world so conceived.
A further indication of the need for a creation and affirmation of self-identity lies
in the psychological concept of anxiety, or "self annihilation." Psychological definitions
of anxiety describe a process by which the self, an individual's identity and the seat of
rational action, literally disappears - the process of personal development reverses and4
the individual is annihilated, becoming merely an unthinking mass reduced to physical
reactions to external physical stimuli, left only with a choice between "fight" and
"flight." In writing on the pernicious effects of unfounded anxiety, Michael Diamond
writes that "[u]nsettling feelings of powerlessness and helplessness, and a
disconnectedness from reality, further describe this disturbing psychodynamic
phenomenon" (Diamond, 1993: 55 n.4). In short, without a sense of identity as a defense
against anxiety, and as the basis of the individuality of a freely associating being, there
remains no chance for humanity, or for a just and beneficial civilization.
As already mentioned, the process of creating and sustaining an identity also
works on larger scales than that of the individual physical being. We as humans create an

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