Every individual is born free - with an anus as unclogged and free as can be. nothing up their ass.
no prenotions. no prejudice. no bias. no ideas. no concepts of good or bad, right and wrong. in fact, no concepts at all. in short, no poles up their ass.
and then begins their 'humanization'.
they learn from their parents and surroundings the good and the bad, the to do and the not to do, the beautiful and the ugly, the strong and the meek... and lots and lots of different words to classify the world around them. initially to better understand it. and slowly and steadily, towards differentiating within it.
That, my dear, is the first formation of a little pole up your ass. its not too big. its small, and very allowing. you are still quite free.
Then you grow a little more. and so do your experiences within the cocoons of your immediate society. the cultural concepts around you, the small talk, the 'praised' ideals and concepts begin to nurture that pole up your ass. and without you really knowing it - its growing bigger and bigger everyday.
Now you are idealistic - on ideas that YOU perceive as worthy without knowing that YOU perceive them worthy cause that's the most common notion you have been opened to.
You differentiate good and bad, and beautiful and ugly, and right and wrong, race and religion, sexual and biological, social and anti-social - based not on introspective thought, but on accumulated learnings from other's filters of life.
The pole up you ass, by the time you are through your teens is about 10 foot long!
you think you are above others because of what you believe is greater than what they believe - may it be your ways of life, your choice of food, the people you are sexually available to, the gods you pray to or the education you choose. Your 'concepts' have still not met the real world. the real world, where you realise that textbooks and fables don't teach what's true, but only that whats as entertaining as it is acceptable by the society as a whole.
Now with that 10 foot pole up your ass, you step into the real world. You feel you are TALLER than everyone else. And that is where the pruning begins. Now, i'm not suggesting that the minute you are past your teens and into the working world is a timelined bench mark. some people live with their pole in their cocoon for as far as 30 years - some, even for life. a life of sweet cocooned delusion. but that's a rough estimate.
As you experience the world on your own terms. see the real world as against the one in texts and stories. travel. explore. meet people. experience your own life. read. watch. listen. and feel the world around you as far and wide as possible... you realize that the pole up your ass is getting smaller. it's being pruned by the world. and by your own TRUE experiences.
NOW, the MOST IMPORTANT part.
The thing is, by now, the pole has been up your ass so long, that it has started to become your SPINE.
That pole is now your CHARACTER. or what defines you. if not to the world, at least to your own self. and to your sense of self-identity. The pole keeps growing or reducing with time and age and circumstances.
And it is pretty much up to each individual to decide how much he/she lets the world and their experiences prune their pole.
some people let time and age take their pole away completely, ending up as 'spineless' individuals who've given up to life and are just living with whatever life serves them. some, accept the pole as their spine and live with it symbiotically - creating a balance between what's acceptable to them and what is not. Even if they might change with the time to come.
people who let the pole be completely reduced and decide not to judge anything at all ever and for whatever reason, become spineless. they no longer have a pole up their ass, but they don't have a spine either. they don't stand up for anything - anything at all.
people who refuse to let their pole be pruned at all by their circumstances and experiences, rare as that may be, end up living delusional lives. often cocooned into institutions, cults, escapism and many a times - dead at their own hands. oh you also find a few who nurture the pole further up their ass. i'm sure you'd meet a few in this lifetime.
and then there are people who let their life experiences and circumstances prune the pole up their ass in such a way that enough spine remains up there to be their back. to take a stand. have an opinion. and yet not be too rigid or demeaningly judgmental towards others. (demeaningly judgmental is not the same as judgmental). more importantly, it is often amongst such people that you find people that are not too stuck up, treat everyone with equality and are as humanly flawed and accepting of it as possible.
In my view - that's pretty much the place to be in. Where there's no 'pole' up your ass, but a well adjusted, adequate sized spine. A backbone that you stand on and live your life with.
But hey, that's my view. the pole up your ass may be a different story all together.