Let us consider the problematic and presently relevant subject of the direct correlation betwixt imposed isolation and judgment and opinion.
Individuals are naturally extraordinarily bad judges. The basis of any successful legal system is that the weight of evidentiary evidence must not only prove the matter to be true or false but also eliminate the preconceptions of those in judgment. A human being’s capacity for changing their mind is naturally biased. Genetically we were inclined to make quick decisions based on instinct and then mold those decisions into full conclusions over a period of time. Changing a conclusion, obtaining the volume of evidence and argument required, often seems wholly disproportional with the degree of realignment and we demur. Much mental labor and anxiety for little apparent purpose.
Conclusions that we make should consistently be debated in our own heads as well as within the circle of information constantly available, both educational and anecdotal. However, we are inclined to more easily accept those pieces of information that align with preconceived conclusions, we do like the universe to agree with our own interpretation of reality. Isolation from counterpoint, from cross-examination is bound to exacerbate this natural and self-survivalist instinctual trait.
We are inclined by natural selection to focus our attention upon things that stimulate our appetite, for subjects we acknowledge to be appetizing. Simply we study what we like, we like what we have forthright and positive feelings about, meaning the concept of intellectual independence is unfortunately an illusion. We know what we know, we do not know what we do not know. As soon as we know, we will gain an opinion, as soon as we have an opinion, we have bias.
It occurs to me that individuals who have sought ultimate freedom eventually found themselves to be in isolation, a state that singularity provides the last bastion of true independence and freedom that only exists beyond the security of the tribe. Homo sapiens once having relearned the trick of survival is quite capable of enduring, even relishing an isolated existence both singularly and in elite company, always remembering that at the point of separation any evolution effectively ceases and negates any further chance of forward momentum. Progress has and always will depend on cooperation, interaction, even simple gossip.
Without a link to the general species there is no chance of forward momentum or improvement, any changes will simply be dips into mankind’s collective memory. Following the dilution and consumption of the individual or groups baggage train the pilgrims will become reliant upon items that can be replaced from nature or like the hermits and mountain man in the past by be obliged to visit the far reaches of civilization at minimum once a year to replenish items just not otherwise available, particularly industrial goods.
Humans need company for a myriad of reasons and without interactivity are inclined to dissolve into self-doubt, paranoia, obsession, protectionism, guilt, effectivity devolving from advanced intellectually responsive beings to mere reactionaries, directed by fear and self-preservation. Consider the self-isolated individual or grouping as prisoners, reliant on big brother for all they see and hear, totally encapsulated within the enclave with which they interact. Consider big brother as being politicians, authorities, media, television, cable company, the internet. Soon a ‘prisoner’ will believe truth or falsehood upon a whim, or more correctly whichever agrees with their instinctive gut feeling. Fact becomes what shouts the most and the loudest, however fictional. Isolation is the mother of madness and conspiracy.