Taboo Awareness – going deeper …
This is an edited version of the video on this page.
One of the main patterns related to this one is “Full-Spectrum Information”. Basically taboo makes it hard for us to get the full picture. A taboo says: You’re not allowed to talk about this topic, ideally you wouldn’t even think about it. Other taboos say you can’t do this thing or be this way. Taboo usually has some bad consequences associated with it. If you do talk about it or do it you will be shunned. In some contexts you could be put in prison or killed. God will look down on you or punish you if you do this taboo act or think this taboo thought, if you talk about this taboo subject or say these taboo words, etc.
Making certain thoughts or topics taboo excludes them from due consideration. Making certain human identities or behaviors taboo can result in the associated people not being part of relevant conversations. Either way, we are probably limiting our ability to take into account what needs to be taken into account for broad long-term benefit.
Now if you are a small isolated culture, you will inevitably evolve certain taboos that help you collectively survive in your situation, in your ecological niche. In this case, taboos are a sort of collective instinct; they’re not necessarily rational but they work, they help you survive as a culture. However, once you become a multicultural, polycultural, pluralistic society, particularly if you have ambitions of being wise and not wiping yourselves out as you develop, you need to be able to get as much full-spectrum information and perspective as you can, and you can’t arbitrarily say that a particular topic cannot be talked about or a certain type of person cannot be included. You need the diversity that arises from open communication.