In my previous post, I was writing about Finnish food, so let’s just continue with my recent observations of Finnish culture. When I have checked keyword analysis of my blog, I have noticed that somebody visited my page due to the word finish individualism. Thus, I am offering one of the possible approaches to the subject; however, please be aware that Finnish individualism has many faces, and this is just one among many. The post might feel a bit black-and-white as I am just writing from my angry part of self. Of course there are always some nice exceptions – but do they only prove the rule?
The beginning of my interaction with Finnish individualism reaches about four years into the past. Even then I had some feelings the society might be very self-orientated. However, when I have started to live with Finns and when I have started to deal with Finnish society more active, my experiences have grown. What bothers me, and sometimes also hurts me a lot is the fact that what an outsider would perhaps see as individualism might actually be egocentrism. The I-only-care-for-myself-and-my-own-good attitude. Egocentrism surely is a part of human nature after all; my friend M. would even say that altruism does not exist.
Blame it all on the developed capitalism.
Lately, I have been reading some forums where the Finns themselves were complaining over their Finnish flatmates; and no wonder some magazine was writing how to behave towards those that live with you. In this society, everything feels like a competition. I was here first, I don’t care about you. This is mine, I don’t care about you. If one is too soft and too kind, one gets hurt; the developed and welfare world is cruel. No, I guess young Finns are not so introverted – they can be just so very ignorant. And that ignorance produces social coldness here up North; the frost among people which might also appear as daring individualism.