We, as human beings, seem to have an innate desire to create groups with those who have similar interests as us. Sometimes the need is strategic (like politics), sometimes it is psychological (like friendships), sometimes it is physical (like sexual partners), sometimes it is spiritual (like churches). Sometimes it is not a need as in lacking something, but a desire to create a better future.
We can accomplish this need or desire in basically two ways: we either create our own groups (regardless of how small or big) or we join other existing groups. If we start a new group, we can decide how we want that group to be like. If we join an existing group, we have to integrate ourselves according to its structure, which will determine what we can and cannot do. If we want to join a group, we have to first accept its limitations, at least in the beginning. Within any group, there will always be things we like and things we don’t like or wish to improve or change. It is important to choose the groups we join in such a way that their strengths align with our strengths and their weaknesses do not bother us too much.
Some of the general aspects that all groups of people share would be:
– the number of members (it could vary from a few to hundreds or thousands, in which case the group is actually organized as having multiple sub-groups)
– the age differences (it could include people with same age, like in schools, or it could be open to anyone, from teenagers to old people)
– the requirements for joining (it could be free for anyone, or it could have a very strict criteria)
– the expected participation (it could be that members are expected to come to different meetings or to get involved in specific ways, or simply socialize online)
– the purpose of the group (in the end, the group must fulfill its purpose, even though its purpose might change with time)
When we want to join a group, we must ask ourselves what is that we need or want to accomplish and what kind of group would fit our own personality. Sometimes we might find out that the group we wanted to join is not a good fit for us, which is perfectly fine, we cannot join every group, nor should we do that. The groups we are part of should give us way more benefits than the requirements they impose on us, otherwise we should invest our energy in different places that are better suited for us.
No one can live without relationship. You may withdraw into the mountains, become a monk, a sannyasi, wander off into the desert by yourself, but you are related. You cannot escape from that absolute fact. You cannot exist in isolation.
— Jiddu Krishnamurti