Recently, I noticed several articles about post-Liberalism (eg, Economist, Lawfare). Their interpretation of Liberalism is quite narrow: only stages 2 and 3 below. In my 7 stages of Liberalism (below), I don’t (fore)see any ending of Liberalism – ever. Just ongoing waves. Liberalism is viewed as a fundamental right in any society because Liberalism equals Freedom. Freedom to do whatever you want, whenever you want, and with whomever you want.
Freedom – or Liberalism – has (seen) several phases, stages – or waves:
1. Freedom for people as a philosophical right:
1.a. Freedom for some people, a.k.a. the end of serfdom (600 BC onwards)
1.b. Freedom for all people, a.k.a. the end of slavery (9-12 AD onwards)
2. Freedom of markets (Money), and introduction of capitalism (1600 onwards)
3. Freedom of government, by introducing political voting rights (1800 – 2000)
4. Freedom to love whomever (1900 onwards)
5. Freedom of speech (UN-1948 onwards)
7. Freedom of collective Religion and the return of individual Faith (my 2018 blog).
The italic markings above show a clear overlap with my concept of the 7 Belief systems, being Love, Money, Philosophy, Politics, Religion, Science, and the Truth.
The above connection between Freedom and the 7 Belief systems came as a surprise to me. It’s slowly dawning upon me that Freedom is (viewed as) our right in life, while the 7 Belief systems are our duties or causes in life. Hence, the connection is that they are two sides of the same coin.
These 7 stages of Liberalism are probably relevant to any society, any civilization, over time. Essentially, these 7 stages represent a transformation from population, to group, to individual. This suggests that Individualism might be the root cause for the decline of any civilization over time.
This suggestion makes sense as people are usually only willing to align personal and group interests as long as that alignment is in their favour. Interestingly, many articles on this subject are about How to achieve that alignment (eg, HBR-2009, HR-2010 ISCA-2013).
This suggestion also makes sense as (achieving) Advantage is our core driver. Also see my blogs: Advantage vs Empathy (2017) and Seeking advantage (2018). Seeking advantage – even at the expense of others – is also the core element in stage 2 of Liberalism: capitalism.
Perhaps, even Advantage (rights) and Empathy (duties) are two sides of the same (human) coin. I need to digest on the above as it is suddenly connecting several of my topics. To be continued.
Note: all markings (bold, italic, underlining) by LO unless stated otherwise.