Normally we think of freedom as a concept we cling to for dear life instead of flee from, but Dr. Eric Fromm theorized that people escape from personal freedoms in order to feel secure. Dr. Fromm determined that freedom is a central theme within human nature (Boeree, 2006). Escaping freedom involves three processes that include clinging rigidly to an authoritarianism structural view of society which provides a source of stability and correctness that creates a foundation for determining clear correct decisions. The second process is Self-destructive behaviors that effect everyone connected – Suicide is the most extreme form of destructiveness (Boeree, 2006). The third process of running from freedom is called automaton conformity. Dr. Erich Fromm coined automaton conformity which describes individuals that hide like a chameleon behind their culture in a society of equality.
These behaviors are possibly learned from cultural history which involved conforming to the ruling power – Waiting to be told what to do instead of being proactive and creating innovation. Current society possesses the ability to implement innovation and are encouraged to do so which is in great contrast to the majority of human history. These ideas are presented to increase self-awareness concerning behaviors – Do you ever find yourself running from freedom? Hopefully, this will provide a new perspective for understanding the underlying reasons why people hold on rigidly to old beliefs. We have the ability to break free of the limiting beliefs that have been passed down and create a new awareness that empowers us to be the leaders of our own lives.
Boeree, C. G., (2006) Personality theories
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