Our fixation with classification: The root of most social injustice?


Have you ever thought about the human race’s obsession with classification? We tend to classify every possible and impossible concept: race, sex, social status, sexual orientation, mental state, physical state, financial state, spiritual state and the list goes on and on and on.

Most of the time we pit these dualities as binaries. Binaries seen as one against the other. One is thus right and the other wrong. Why do we feel the need to hold on to these classifications?

Believer versus non-believer       sane versus insane     male versus female

heterosexuality versus homosexuality                 rich versus poor

I have come to believe that these binaries allow for injustices to breed, as we exclude or include with it by default. Who decides which of these so called “states” should be the norm? Why is it that we still use  heteronormative and often patriarchal measuring sticks? I believe that when we prescribe to a specific group and then tell each other how right we are, we are busy with a mass masturbation session! It is not about honoring other people or the appreciations of others, but about making ourselves feel secure and justified. Our way become the “right” way and those who understand or believe differently, becomes the “other”, the wrong and the enemy!

I believe that the only way how we can address this is, to move beyond classifications. Let us see a PERSON instead of a black or a white, man or a woman, a gay or a straight, a poor or a rich! We are at all times firstly a person when then happens to be male or female, gay or straight, rich or poor, church goer or non-church goer or whatever other classification might spring to mind. The classification should not define personhood but rather the fact that we share one commonality, namely we are human beings – we are all firstly a PERSON!

Emotionally whole


Have you ever thought about the term ’emotionally whole’. Whenever I hear this term it reminds me of the absent, but implicit. If I am not emotionally whole, it implies that I must be broken or only partly developed. What does it look like and who decides if someone is emotionally whole or broken? It just does not sit very well with me!

Somehow this term always reminds me of a broken vase. I struggle with this metaphor and find it even somewhat disrespectful to refer to any person in these terms. What is emotional wholeness and how do we achieve this? Often people use this term as a generic statement, but are we as people ever whole or un-whole? If one understands the metaphor of wholeness in terms of the absence of brokenness, it implies that an un-whole person’s emotions needs to be fixed. Does the hurt, disappointment and struggles brake us, or does it change our ‘reality’ and cause new ways of being, even if these might be negative?