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Extremism and Terrorism

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Emotional, cognitive and behavioral influences have various impacts on an individual’s life. The prevalence of extremism in a society is caused by alarm due to its high probability of translating into the acts of terrorism. An extremist believes that their views are not subject to change due to the influence of other people’s opinion. Although not all extremists are engaged in terrorism, the evidence shows that extremism drives terrorists towards their aggressive and violent acts. On the other hand, people who do not exhibit extremism are less likely to be engaged in terrorism. Extremism could be a result of such factors as a particular individual’s personality, certain nature of information and insecurity. Individuals, who exhibit abnormal levels of fascination with certain ideas, develop some form of attachment to that idea and avoid decision that may interfere with the attachment (White, 2011). They exhibit high levels of inflexibility concerning their position on the idea.

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When a person with extremist tendencies receives training or information from a source, which he holds in high regard, the prospects of that person engaging in terrorism considerably increase. For example, a religious mentor who instills thoughts that only his religion holds true believes, gives his subjects extremist ideologies and triggers the urge to prove such ideologies to the other people (White, 2011). Terrorism arises from a constant urge to act in a manner that serves a person’s internalized ideas, which other people do not seem to acknowledge. An extremist takes the reluctance by other people to appreciate that his own ideologies are more valid as a cause for action on his behalf. While non-extremists accept views from other people, extremists want to impose their opinion on people, and do not accept the possibility of changing their own beliefs. The mentioned scenario creates a sense of isolation for extremists, who then attempt to demonstrate the validity of their ideologies, though unacceptable under the scope of  non-extremists. 

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