As recently as 2008, a professor of Jurisprudence at King’s College London, Timothy Macklem, described the phrase in this fashion:
“Independence of Mind [explores] the ways in which the fundamental freedoms help us to achieve something even more profound, by enabling us to arrive at beliefs, convictions and voices of our own, so that we truly come to think, believe, and speak for ourselves in the rich and various ways that the freedoms then protect. Privacy grants us the distance and refuge from others necessary to develop views of our own; freedom of speech calls on us to imagine ways of expressing ourselves that are both true to the views we have developed and innovative in their own right; freedom of conscience enables each of us to create a distinctive rational personality in which to embed the convictions that we wish to treat as non-negotiable…”
If the professor taught at one of many American “liberal colleges” today, a mere nine years after he wrote that description, he would be pilloried and subjected to prolonged attacks from students and even other faculty.
That’s the pace of change these days.
I started NoMoreFakeNews.com in 2001. Independence of mind was a given for me. As the years passed, I saw the need for promoting it and defending it. I still do. More than ever.
What drives the human spirit isn’t sameness from individual to individual. It’s difference. It’s uniqueness. The people who know that and embody it are the lights that burn and keep burning. They’re inextinguishable.
The betrayal of independence of mind is fantastical in the culture. It raises a stink to the heavens. It oozes fanaticism.
Many of the little academic intellects who support that betrayal and play its tunes are Marxists in disguise, who seek revenge on humanity for their own failures and shortcomings, by putting populations under the totalitarian gun of political correctness. This is “progressivism.”
Without knowing it, I grew up on the legacy of Emerson and Thoreau and Walt Whitman. These giants of literature and philosophy had breathed the air of independence and knew what it meant in their blood and brains and souls and minds. They heralded an age that came and then went, buried in a growing landfill of collectivism.
The myth that the onrushing political Left was composed of millions of awake and aware individuals was eventually exposed as a gigantic lie.
There is a choice: the glory of the individual or the glory of the mob?
Whoever takes his own independent ideas and prizes them has something the mob can never fathom.
What does censorship mean to a person who has nothing that could be censored? Why would he be concerned about shutting up other people, since he has nothing of his own to express that might be censored?
What does “having an idea” mean to a person who has never considered making a distinction between what he thinks and what others, to whom he attaches himself, think?
In the description of independence of mind I quoted above, what would the following phrase mean to a person who is always surrounded with allies who mimic each other’s thoughts: “Privacy grants us the distance and refuge from others necessary to develop views of our own.”
Privacy? What is that? What is it for? Who needs it? Why would anyone seek it?
Therefore, what harm could come from spying on others?
Who stands up for something on his own when he has nothing to stand up for on his own?
In the delirium of the collective, it is always overcast and dim, and the occasional joys come from acts of destruction against the vague “other.”
The first sacrifice by the true believer is the sacrifice of self. From that, everything else follows with dead certainty.
No matter what the state of the culture, independence of mind is a virtue of the highest order.
It is there for anyone who wants to achieve it.
August 22, 2017
By Jon Rappoport
The author of three explosive collections, THE MATRIX REVEALED, EXIT FROM THE MATRIX, and POWER OUTSIDE THE MATRIX, Jon was a candidate for a US Congressional seat in the 29th District of California. He maintains a consulting practice for private clients, the purpose of which is the expansion of personal creative power. Nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, he has worked as an investigative reporter for 30 years, writing articles on politics, medicine, and health for CBS Healthwatch, LA Weekly, Spin Magazine, Stern, and other newspapers and magazines in the US and Europe. Jon has delivered lectures and seminars on global politics, health, logic, and creative power to audiences around the world. You can sign up for his free NoMoreFakeNews emails here or his free OutsideTheRealityMachine emails here.