People, as a general rule, are drawn to those things which are most popular. They listen to the most popular music. They follow the football team which is most popular. They watch the film which is most popular.

This goes right back to one’s schooldays. Everyone wants to date the most popular boy or girl in class.

Of course, advertisers use this technique to great effect: such and such is the most popular newspaper, dog food, holiday destination. Buy it, and you too can be popular …

But if it is all about being popular, perhaps we should all indulge more in joyless sex, drugs and violence? Because these remain far and away the most popular activities that human beings engage in, and no one needs to advertise the fact.

It seems that people have trouble distinguishing between that which is popular and that which is valuable. Stuffing your face with burgers is most certainly popular, but if your heart is bleeding, how valuable is that?


And, if you say, “No. I hate anything that’s popular,” it’s only because the most popular boy or girl in class spurned your advances, and humiliated you in the most horrible manner they could. It is a complete reaction. Doing anything to avoid popularity is being trapped in this whole popularity mindset, just the same.


You are fully human when, given the choice between truth and popularity, you choose truth.

© Phillip A. Klein March 2008

Published in: on March 17, 2008 at 2:11 am  Leave a Comment