Once upon a time there used to be a web-site called non-normie.com, which hosted a daily post about the non-normie of the day, many of them politicians or other news-makers. It also included a definition of the term, as well as a test one could take to evaluate one’s level of non-normieness, and resources to help one learn how to deal with the pain involved in being a non-normie. I found the site absolutely fascinating because it provided me a way of understanding my occasional bouts of existential pain, and also some of the dynamics of my own family and upbringing.
In the simplest of terms, a normie (an unofficial Alcoholics Anonymous term for normal people) is a person who learned to grieve losses as a child and move on. A non-normie is a person who for whatever reason failed to learn how to grieve losses as a child, and has since stored up a tremendous amount of pain in what might best be termed a lake of fire.
The choice to become a non-normie appears to occur around the age of 8 to 10, when a child becomes aware of him or herself as a person, and is usually conditioned by the choices and actions of his parents. The website provided a number of anecdotes about well-known non-normies such as Ted Turner as examples of what leads such people to become addicted to one of the five Cs, Crutches (alcohol, drugs, sex, etc.), Crime, Causes, Crises, and the fifth, which I can’t remember anymore. In Mr. Turner’s case, apparently when he was about eight years old, he lost his brother due to an accident. As a consequence of God failing to answer his prayer and save his brother, he turned against God and religion, and has since spent his life in what must be a tremendous amount of pain resulting from his ongoing denial of reality and his place in it.
The movie “God’s Not Dead” shows very clearly the difference between normies and non-normies, with the antagonist professor following the same path as Mr. Turner, and most likely many other rabid atheists. But by no means all non-normies rebel against reality and their places in it to that extent. Many live lives of quiet desperation, looking for something they’re not even able to define. Been there, done that, determined that what I was really looking for was comfort—the assurance that I am exactly whom I am supposed to be, doing exactly what I’m supposed to do at any given moment in time. Sometimes we gain this sense of comfort through positive interactions with other people. Other times we gain it through prayer, or contemplation, or reflection on the nature of reality. I keep a personal log (the idea borrowed from Star Trek, of course), which provides me with a place to record my thoughts and feelings, especially those of frustration, anger, or fear for the future.
If you don’t already keep a personal log or journal, I strongly urge you to start doing so. Keep it to yourself as far as possible, since it’s your place to vent or let off steam so you don’t blast your loved ones in the face with it, let alone co-workers, customers, or even strangers. Somehow just writing down exactly how you feel about something helps you begin to gain perspective, and in time this can help you find ways to deal with the cause of your fury or fear. This is the first step in learning how to grieve your losses and move toward becoming a normie instead of a non-normie.
In a future post, I’ll share my theory of human nature, which may help you understand a little better where you are coming from on those horrible-no-good-really-bad days.