The modern definition of indifference is passive, indifferent, devoid of any interest relevant to the environment. There are many sayings and Proverbs that condemn this feeling or, more precisely, its absence. Anton Chekhov once called the indifference is paralysis of soul. Writer Bruno Jasieński's novel "conspiracy of the indifferent" wrote the following: "do Not be afraid of friends – at worst they can betray you, do not be afraid of enemies – at worst they can kill you, be afraid indifferent – only with their silent connivance on the Ground of betrayal and murder."
There is even an opinion that indifference is inherited, like a bad disease in which a man is unable to live a full life and enjoy the emotions. Indifferent people can not compassion, they are callous, cowardly and even despicable, they are alien to all human. Call them immature, believing that they are at a lower stage of evolution.
Indifference as a defense mechanism
The conditions of modern life is complex and contradictory. Perhaps to justify indifference is not appropriate, but to understand why light the human soul becomes callous and indifferent, perhaps, is.
Human life in the 21st century is full of stress and worries. Economic crises and unemployment, destroying the environment and lots of diseases, the crazy pace and risk to meet someone who is not burdened with its weight problems, is almost impossible. As says old Russian proverb, his own shirt closer to the body. Quite difficult to truly empathize with another, often a perfect stranger, floundering up to his neck in his own troubles.
All the media, as one, surrounded on all sides by human information on infant deaths, robberies, disasters, wars, accidents and natural disasters taking place every moment all over the world. Unlikely after this amount of negativity, empathizing with everyone, someone will be able to maintain mental health. We must recognize that in such conditions people just have to use a defense mechanism – to be indifferent to what is happening.
Humanity is not hopeless. Free psychological assistance, social services, public and volunteer organizations – most of them are caring people ready to help. But the first thing they learn is continuously dealing with disasters – the humility and peace of mind, the same "evenness of spirit", which is meant by the indifference of our ancestors, otherwise all these helpful people just went crazy. Society tends to think of categorical concepts: the indifference is bad, compassion is good. But most likely the truth, as always, somewhere in the middle.