Traditions

The word ‘tradition’ comes from the Latin word ‘traditionem’ which means “handing over, passing on”. However just because something is traditional is no reason to do it.

Tradition becomes our security, and when the mind is secure it is in decay. Free yourself from the rigid conduct of tradition and open yourself to new forms of probability.

The plea to preserve “tradition” can appeal only to those who have given up or to those who never intended to achieve anything in life. It is a plea that appeals to the worst elements in men and rejects the best: it appeals to fear, sloth, cowardice, conformity, self-doubt—and rejects creativeness, originality, courage, independence, self-reliance. It is an outrageous plea to address to human beings anywhere.
The argument that we must respect “tradition” as such, respect it merely because it is a “tradition,” means that we must accept the values other men have chosen, merely because other men have chosen them—with the necessary implication of who are we to change them? The affront to a man’s self-esteem, in such an argument, and the profound contempt for man’s nature are obvious.

After all the modernity of yesterday is the tradition of today, and the modernity of today will be tradition tomorrow.

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