The Influence of Modernity On Traditional Communities

The Influence of Modernity On Traditional Communities

Updated: Apr 17

The grand grip and dominance modern day has on us is obvious and unquestionable. It is obvious that the people before the various technological revolutions have lived completely different lives from what many of us are living as of today. However, some remnants of the pre-industrial, pre-media of the human civilization, still exist today to some portion of extant. It is not only about communities of tribesman in remote areas that still live as if it's the stone age; it is also discussed about more traditional societies that have managed to maintain at least some of their "purity" before the westernization and the globalization of the world. Unfortunately, as the technology and science of today continue to develop, the duration of these said communities are put in jeopardy. The exposure to what the world has to offer may threaten those who wish to preserve their ancient, traditional way of life, but their passion to keep preserving their and their communities' lifestyle may not be able to succeed to prevent themselves the impact of modern-day technology that shall only progress towards new discoveries and inventions. Here are some of the aspects the technology and science of the "western hegemony" did, have and could stop the preservation of the old ways of esoteric communities:


The common beliefs in deities and in supernatural and mystical forces are the glue which allowed entire communities to cooperate with each other and to prosper as collectives, both in just and unjust ways, for thousands of years. Even though much of the world's population are religious in some way, scientific methods of inquiry and experimentation have proved some religious principles to be false. Examples are the existence of souls and reincarnation, the world as a product that took 7 days, the world as only few thousand years old, and that organisms are always as they are as long as they exist (because it is claimed by religions that organisms created by a flawless system of design – which as also proved wrong because there are components in organisms which are severely flawed). These discoveries made by scientific research with the help of technological development, have converted many from creationism to atheism or to agnostic (the lack of decidedness whether deities exist or not). With the rise of people becoming at least more secular, many traditional communities which base their unity on religiousness, are jeopardized. The Jewish Haredim for example, a heavily religious collection of sects, attempt to preserve their unity and identity by limiting exposure to information, technology and media, due to the fear that the new info that exists beyond their circle will tear apart the zealotry of their religions (let alone that many of them forcibly seclude each other from the world since the world's teachings are "impure").


With the demand of more advance education and professionalism in existent and new fields of knowledge and expertise, traditional communities may need to give up on their old ways just to keep earning a living. Old professions quickly become irrelevant as greater professions in the same fields replace them and require more education. This is why in general it is important to remain educated – to keep up with the world and not be left behind, because these who are left behind may find it more difficult to survive and thrive in an always-changing, globalized world. In general, due to many traditional communities generally being more isolated or at least more remote from globalized civilizations, these communities are usually poorer and have less opportunities in their current environment, forcing them to move from the locations of their communities to cities and to expose themselves to the ways of the world. This of course threatens the preservation of traditional communities because advancements require change and adjustment. The earliest examples for this was at the time of the industrial revolution in the end of the 19th century, where many men required to leave their communities to the big cities to sustain the needs of their families back at the villages/towns for elementary needs such as food and shelter.


Even if their ways are respected by general society, usually traditional communities have a lower socio-economic status than that of the major population, and also suffer from higher rates of death, disease, poorer education and crime, making life for them to be more problematic and harder in comparison to the rest of the population that usually has the exact opposite of what they have – more education, more access to technology, more security and more money. These significant differences may encourage members of these esoteric communities (especially the young ones) to disassociate themselves with the ways of their ancestors and to go with the flow of the rest of society to keep up the pace and allow themselves a better life and a better future from that of the older generations. An example for that are the aboriginals, also known as the Indigenous Australians, which are the natives of Australia before it got colonized by Europeans. The aboriginals fulfill all of what is written in this section of the article – poorer education, poorer life expectancy and so forth. To allow themselves a better wellbeing and a better socio-economic status, aboriginals ought to become more urbanized and leave their traditional ways that lasted from the dawn of their culture in the rural areas of Australia.


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© 2019 Tomasio A. Rubinshtein, Philosopher