“I hope I’m becoming more eccentric. More room in the brain.”
That quote by musician Tom Waits [from Eccentricity page 2] is a witty reminder of one of the values of non-conforming.
Author, artist, and psychotherapist Natalie Rogers, Ph.D. talks about the need for being eccentric “In these times where conformity is being thrust upon us by governments.”
She notes, “We urgently need strong individuals who are able to think and act creatively. Creativity threatens those who demand conformity.
“Dictators squelch self-expression and the creative process. They do not want their citizens to think for themselves or to be spontaneous, imaginative or self-determined. Thus, creativity is subversive to those who demand conformity to a political system.
She notes her father, acclaimed therapist Carl Rogers, “was a very creative individual, himself. He personified the creative person who stays open to options, is flexible, and values individual differences.
“The conformist, on the other hand, is closed, rigid in his/her thinking, and follows the leader without using his/her self-knowledge or ability to discriminate.
“I believe that to maintain and foster democracy in our world we must be creative â€“ that is, be able to play with ideas, see alternative solutions, and be able to listen empathetically to all sides.”
[Quotes from her article Giving Life to Carl Rogers Theory of Creativity. She is author of The Creative Connection: Expressive Arts As Healing.]