finding courage through community and seeing people as whole
In their Adlerian psychology book “The Courage to Be Disliked” Ichiro Kishimi and Fumitake Koga review the principles of finding courage through community, not recognition, and embracing holism by seeing people as whole, indivisible beings.
For the principle of finding courage through community rather than recognition, the author argues that one should seek to feel a sense of belonging within broader communities rather than craving recognition from others. This requires shifting one’s perspective away from an ego-centric view where one’s worth is determined by how others perceive and praise them.
Instead, one should feel a sense of purpose and contribution by focusing on the goals of self-reliance and cooperation within society. This involves disregarding how one may be judged by others and living according to one’s own values and conscience. Rather than feeling inferior for lacking recognition, one can develop confidence through actively participating in communal pursuits.
Practically, this involves engaging in meaningful work, hobbies, volunteering or political causes that aim to better one’s communities. It means deriving purpose and self-worth from meaningful roles within relationships and society instead of passively seeking validation from others.
Regarding embracing holism by seeing people as whole indivisible beings, the author argues against splitting human nature into dichotomous parts like mind vs body, reason vs emotion, or conscious vs unconscious. This means recognizing that people act with unified motives rather than being driven by isolated mental faculties.
In practice, this involves focusing on people’s goals and intentions rather than simplistically attributing actions to discrete causes. It means engaging others as fellow complex beings seeking understanding rather than separately judging their various characteristics. It requires seeing interpersonal conflicts in terms of unified wholes in conflict instead of antagonistically targeting separate attributes in others. Overall, this holistic view fosters more empathy and cooperation in relationships.