Saturday, April 12, 2008

"Hippie" -- a label of the past?

First of all, let me say that composing a complex text in English is not always easy for a non-native speaker. A lot of times my texts sound flat and not well written.
But yet, I will give it another try, because I love to be "making a noise in this world"... share my views and thoughts. May they be heard or not, at least I made an effort.

I have found great online sources in my search for the subject on my mind "hippies today". And one of the starting points is defining who the hippies WERE before anyone tries to determine if there are still hippies around. This article contains vast information about where the hippies came from, their beatnik origin and the development of this counter movement.

A Most Merry and Illustrated History of The Hippies

and in a shorter version a wikipedia definition.

There are also great contributers of articles out there which explore the question of how one can be a hippie TODAY.

How to be a hippie

The age of hippies and the term "flower power"

Coming Out Of The Countercultural Closet__Reclaiming and Redefining Hippie

There also exists a forum HipForums
where "old and young hippies" can chat about their life style and anything "hippie".

My own background and how I experienced the counter movement at an early age in the 1960s and later in the 1970s as a teen/young adult is a bit different from the American Hippie culture and can be explored in this wikipedia article German Student Movement ("1968 Generation").

Strangely though I never felt like I had to define myself until I moved to the USA in 2003.

I am this 40s woman, immigrant, left wing voter, liberal thinker, pacifist, college educated (psychology degree) without a strong aspiration to get into the career rat race of corporate America or the traditional Health system, alternative medicine supporter, spiritual but not organized in any church (even though baptized Catholic as infant), non-conformist in many ways, environmentally conscious, modest in living, monogamous loving, hand-crafter, independence-loving and "tree-hugging", not vegetarian, tie-dye and bell-bottom loving, abstinent to mind-altering substances, married to a traditional Native American, and generally laid back and tolerant towards different life styles.

I don't like labels in general, there is no black & white or right and wrong in this world. And I don't fit all the cliches.
But if there has to be a label for me, my wares, and my lifestyle, then "Hippie" fits me just fine.

I have learned that it has a negative connotation in American society depending on who you talk to, but honestly, I don't care. So people may argue if there are still hippies around. And associate them with freaks, heads, laziness or just completely outdated and comical like a vintage cartoon, but I still believe in the beauty of LOVE & PEACE. And HIPPIE is a good word in my book.

And here is an exert from one of the above articles which sums up the answer to the question "Are you hippie or not?" very wisely in a nutshell:
>>>Being a hippie is a decision you have to make based on your beliefs. Nobody can truly tell you how to be a hippie, or whether you truly are one or not. People generally do what they think is right, and if you think the hippies for the most part were/are right then you may just be one :) >>>

(If you made it until the end of this post, kuddos to you, I am happy to find readers like you:)
Have a great weekend!

1 comment:

Allison said...

I have many hippie-esque qualities & I have definitely noticed a bit of backlash against that term by certain people. But ah well, life goes on regardless :]