My blood test reports have come, and I was summoned to see the doctor. Many test results were out of range. Hemoglobin should be 13, but mine’s only 11. The doctor smirked and asked me not to bother about these ‘out of range’ results, and these ranges are only for reference.
We have an appraisal system at work. The performances of the associates are measured and normalised to be fit in a bell curve with the major area of the curve (peak) representing count of ‘Average’ performing associates. This also indicates that the organization expects majority of the population to perform average. The associates on either side of the normalised distribution curve are either appreciated or admonished based on what side of the curve they belonged to.
In an attempt to explain the standard normal distribution, our statistics lecturer gave us an example of heights of males in India. The average height of Indian male is 5.5 ft. So the major male population would fit in this height range between 5.3 and 5.7 ft. It doesn’t mean that the other minority representing lesser than 5.3 feet and greater than 5.7 feet do not belong to the society. They pretty much do, except that our minds are trained to see them with a difference.
What’s common to all the above said examples is the ‘range of values’ that we humans are measured against. It is wise to be in the reference ranges so as to not be questioned against.
Now, draw a bell curve among people across colour, creed, religion, ethnicity, practices and hobbies of the people. Think about those that do not belong to averages.
Life is created out of averages. There is a sublime democratic process through which we have trained and chosen our lives. We have to live life in a certain way – go to school, get a job, get married, bear kids, buy houses, create a socio-economic status, work hard towards material betterment of lives, and die peacefully. This gives a sense of settlement in lives, and we feel physically secured. Any minor aberration causes great discomfort, because we belong to the majority herd.
Now, let us further extrapolate this normalization to our emotions. Our emotions are automated too – we live to appease society, we are pleased when praised, we are angered easily, we fear for discomforts, we hate every other thing, and holler at every single disturbance in life.
We are the best hypocrites that the society can produce.
We know our emotions are momentary but we dwell a bit too much in them. We know worry doesn’t solve a problem but we worry much. We know that life is too short to stress, but we stress much in a day to day living. We know that ‘unconditional’ happiness is the best cure for many problems, but we seldom put that to use. We know that expectation is root cause of all misery, but we expect a lot. We know from the bottom of our hearts there is only God, but we create a divide. The only reason is that the society taught us to be in that way.
We have conquered earth and other planets, but can’t control our own mind and emotions. This assures me to believe that we are using our minds incorrectly. Just like we trace back a screwed-up stomach to some bad food eaten, the screwed up mind can be traced back to bad training imparted for centuries.
Somewhere in the normalization process, we seem to have forgotten the basics of human life and have created too many ‘unwarranted’ needs. We live in perspectives created by our society. Our minds are conditioned with these perspectives for centuries, decades and years. Any deviation will be seen blasphemous.
Much said in this context, let me call it a day. I am already stressed out and have to get a good night sleep for a respite from my flawed life.