Fanaticism is an extreme uncritical zeal, particularly for a belief or dogma which most of the time exists in religious or political cause. I said “most of the time” is because most of the time in religious or political, fanaticism can be observed to be obviously most disturbing. While fanaticism is also exist in other cases like sports or consumerism towards particular brand or lifestyle, annoying as it could be, but it never as annoying as when it is into religion and ideology.
I always thought that fanaticism is like believing that “1 + 1 = 2”. A fanatic is just so certain that he is correct and don’t care about different opinions of others. Believe in themselves, that’s good, I always thought.
I was wrong. It was never about “1 + 1 = 2” (well, it kinda was, but never just about that.) It is more about an extreme obsessive behavior to self-confirm or to strengthen a certain belief towards the object of fanaticism. If we bring this to a more complex beliefs than “1 + 1 = 2”, it will shows that is not only about that they are not wrong, but it is more to that they expressed the particular belief in a manner that they could never be wrong about it in general or in the entire beliefs system. They express their belief passed the boundary of social norms. They talk about it all the time, they brag about it, looking for agreements, debating all the time and try to assuring or just showing it off to everybody. Some fanatics are more than the other, they forcing others to believe them and think that whoever not with them are against them. And it doesn’t stop there.
While it is more than just about their beliefs, their behavior towards the belief is like they are obsessively trying to assuring not only other people, but they are also trying to assuring themselves by looking for conformity among others who agrees or following them. Their object of fanaticism, however, more often than not could be quite neutral, like religion and politic.
Nothing is wrong with religions or politics. But when people sharing the object of their fanaticism to others with active-aggressively or passive-aggressively, that neutral object is becoming a not-so-neutral subject.
The sharing (or call it “spreading”, if you may) of faith and political belief, even though phenomenally they are showing practically the same behavior and attitude, I can classified it into two different groups.
The first group, they are trying to gather members and making other people as object or target to bring into their belief. Since other people is a ‘target’, the motivation (and what they could do if they don’t get their ‘target’) that lies under this kind of spreading is questionable.
The second group, they are doing the very same thing, but this one, they make other people as a subject. They share their belief not for themselves. They are acting more like a news people who is reading the news every morning and evening, they want us to listen but they know, if we don’t watch them, it’s our lost.
I guess things are never as easy as neither “1 + 1 = 2” nor as obvious as it seems.
A fanatic is one who can’t change his mind and won’t change the subject