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  The Ishmael Community: Questions and Answers

The Question (ID Number 674)...

    I'm a loner. I have some friends, but I don't belong to any groups, besides my family. All I want to do right now is travel, and wander through the world. Yet you seem to think that tribes are the only time-tested, or best way for people to live, right? And tribes are usually groups. So where do people like me fit in? I know I'm not alone. What do you see for wandering loners like me? How did tribes treat them?

    ...and the response:

    Although I never used these words, I'll accept your version, that "tribes are the only time-tested, or best way for people to live." In this context, I was speaking of people in general, not of each and every individual. Tribes are not "usually" groups, they are BY DEFINITION groups. When you say that you're a loner but that you're not alone, I assume you mean that you're not the only loner in the world, which is obviously true. You ask where you "fit in." It sounds like you fit in with all the thousands of other "wandering loners" who are out there, making their way the best they can. How did aboriginal tribes treat loners? If you mean these loners preferred to live apart from the tribe, I assume their tribes just wished them well and waved goodbye. Maybe you have the impression I'm saying that belonging to a tribe is an obligation. It's not an obligation, it's just the easiest way people have ever found to make a living (which we all must do, one way or another).

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