Thursday, 17 July 2008

Don't follow the crowd

(picture courtesy of google)
The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself. Friedrich Nietzsche

Usually I am easy going. Don't make much fuss about a lot of things. One of them is that as long as the house is clean that's fine. I don't care when books are lying around or when the place looks untidy. I am aware that others find this basically important so I do back them up when possible. I find it however difficult to compromise on living a relaxed live. Some people can nag continuesly about small things. Leaving a cloud of stress behind. It's not worth it. When I have the possibility to learn something interesting, give some kids a good time and teach them something or have a walk and talk with a friend. These things are much more important. I like having people around but I realise that I am not the easiest. Yes most of the time I am easy and fun loving, but......

I make up my own mind about everything. It is also a part of being Dutch. They have an opinion about everything and love to share it. They simply call it discussing something. When I was young there were nights when we would "argue" as friends till the morning about something and I enjoyed that. It keeps your mind fresh. You had to come up with good arguments and sometimes you had to admit that the others arguments were relevant and made your view invalid and so you changed your mind.

I often heard that people find that the Dutch are being confrontational and sometimes oppositional. When I sense that I can't speak my mind, mostly in a different culture than I just keep my mouth shut. Except when I see that the things I believe in are violated or when I want to improve something than I become a rebel. Which means I will be called stubborn and Difficult. This difficult woman doesn't care and hold no grouches against anyone who says I am.

Most people are other people, Their thoughts are someone else's opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation. Oscar Wilde, De profundis, 1905

Do not believe in anything (simply) because you have heard it. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations.
Do not believe in anything because it is spoken and rumoured by many. Do not believe in anything (simply) because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders.
But after observation and analyses when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conductive to the good and benefit of one all then accept it and live up to it.
The Buddha


  1. I tend to say my opinion. yet I don't like confrontation. It's great to have friends that accept and know who we are...not easy to find really.

  2. Good one Marja! I think I have changed over the years as I grew younger :P ... gone many phases, ups and downs many times too. Finally, I am glad I find my own footing, think my own thoughts and say what I want. It may seem easy or natural to you, maybe not to everyone. In Asian culture, we were trained not to object from young, even submissive at times..but I definitely dont see it now because my children are anything but submissive. I find it suffocating to follow the norm (used too back then)...I think I am a fairly easy person to get along, I dont know if I am making sense now hehehe..have a blessed weekend to come :)

  3. Hi Majra
    Thanks for making me remember those quotes of Buddha.It will be relevant till the world lasts.
    @deepak- dont worry Majra there will be a new contest tomorrow

  4. when I saw the pic I reminded on: Don't follow me, I'm lost too :)

  5. That is a wonderful Post! I really enjoyed it!

  6. hehe
    My hubby and I lived in a predominately dutch neighbourhood for 4 years awhile back, his bosses were dutch, our landlord was dutch, the green houses the boys would run around in were owned by the dutch, the restaurant we ate....well you get the idea. My boys and hubby looked dutch but I don't...LOL
    Anyway, I absolutely LOVED it!! We all did. Everyone was fair. I don't know how to explain it but if they were outspoken, it was because something needed to be made fair. I didn't mind that at all. I didn't mind debates, or the little discussions we would have about the world or whatever...they were all super nice and helped us through a really difficult time of Hubby having to stop working at that job by dr's orders and we couldn't pay the rent. They gave us food, clothes, and helped us find a cheaper place to live. They were wonderful. So you can take your dutch outspokenness over to my blog any time you want!! I miss that house and those people, it was years ago. Good are good too!!
    ah, you made me reminisce of good

  7. Marja, these are wonderful thoughts. You're such a compassionate person. You remind me of a person who would literally give their shirt off their back if they thought it was needed more by someone else.

    I am glad I found my way to your blog.


  8. KristenThanks for your comment. And no I don't like confrontation either but if you do it with respect than it is a lot better than saying nothing while there is someting wrong If you know what I mean.

    You make completely sense to me. I think we are very simular dear m.kate. Despite my culture I was very shy when I was young and therefore also submissive sometimes. I've learned.

    Thanks Deepak Ah great Another change on a flower?

    Patricija Good one. Love it.

    Thanks for the people

    Thank you Jen for your touching comments about the Dutch. Yes it has a good site too but not everybody likes it. But whats great You like it.

    Thanks Missy ......(marja quiet)....but eh yeh what shall I say....I do love my shirt

  9. Kia ora Marja,
    As usual you give me much to think about. I feel somewhat kindred to you in many ways. I hope you and Bob catch up and I wish I could be there. It would be fun! By the way, I have been enjoying your posts, but when I have been trying to comment from my computer at home it has been failing for some reason. Will sort it out, and I am writing this from work! Have an absolutely lovely day Marja.

  10. Thanks! I love how you put it and the picture is awesome - I'm going to see if I can print it and post it for my students :).

    Thanks too for stopping by my blog - good luck with your pen!!

  11. Great post Marja! I can relate....perhaps i have a little Dutch in me too! :) I live in a different part of Canada that I grew up in. The Maritimes is far more laid back and indirect than where i grew up, in Ontario. Maritimes consider anyone from Ontario as an "Upper Canadian..." which is based on the history of how this country originally was named....Upper and Lower Canada.

    If I get too opinionated or too direct, I will be labelled "Upper Canadian.." funny, eh?

    Your post also made me laugh. My brother in law who is Dutch and I had a similar conversation last week when we were in Ontario visiting.....he shows the same characteristics.....he and I can get right into a heated debate and we're both fine with it, but i've seen how powerful his opinions can be shared and how others take it personally and get defensive.

  12. Wise words here. I will stand up for myself, & swim against the tide of public opinion! Good for you!

  13. And thanks for being a rebel and standing for what you believe (when it really counts)... the world needs more people like you (and me...hehehe)... there is no way humans are going to be different if there aren't any people who can do things differently as the world perceives.

  14. Ha-ha ... A true Dutch woman speaks her mind.

    I must admit though, having lived in England for such a long time, when I go back and listen to the Dutch I do find them rather opinionated

  15. great message, Marja!!!

    yes, I had a lot of energy! it's easy, when you're truly passionate about what you do you have that kind of energy. I don't anymore! :(

    big kiss!!! :)

  16. Great post,Marja!Wise words!

  17. It's always very stimulating to have a healthy debate over an issue as long as both parties stay respectful and it doesn't get nasty. So many people just refuse to listen with an open mind and you'll never get anywhere with people like that. These days I choose my battles wisely.


Thank you for your comment