The original flower child movement was made of people who promoted love over hate, wanted to end the war, were very intelligent and politically active, were unsatisfied with today's culture and wished to expand their minds and those of the people around them. They tended to be very liberal democrats, or more commonly, socialists. They were very concerned with the world around them, not just war, but poverty, women's rights, civil rights, youth's rights, and the preservation of the environment.
The term hippy more commonly refers to drugged out dirty teenagers, or later joiners of the movement who just wanted to be cool and did not really care about all the issues. Most 'hippies' will not be offended by the term, because in its originality, it was interchangeable with the term 'flower child'.
There tends to be a very misunderstood association of hippies with drugs. In the original movement, many of the young people were very dissatisfied with their morals and religions being taught at home, and were searching for something new. They turned to nature and ancient natural spiritual beliefs, eastern religions (especially Buddhism), and of course, mind expanding drugs such as Marijuana, LSD, and Mushrooms. It is important to remember that drugs such as LSD were not made illegal until 1965, well after the beatnik and folkie beginning of the flower child movement, and that these drugs were often used in spiritual practices as ways to make it easier to open up the mind and journey within oneself. Did all hippies do drugs? Pretty much. Did a whole lot of them stop: Yes, although marijuana use is still common among modern hippies, the majority have learned from those before them, and stopped the use of these 'heaver' drugs. And don’t make the mistake of inferring that all hippies these days smoke, pot is at least 5 times more potent and often laced with more dangerous drugs, so huge amounts have chosen to stop, or never began.
Another common mistuned standing is the idea that all hippies are 'dirty' and 'smell'. We must remember, most hippies were baby boomers from suburbia in their earlier lives, so yes, they showered. This idea comes from the fact that most hippies believed that all people should be equal, and there for many did not own many outfits and would let them get torn, stained, and patched before buying new ones. Also, music was a way of sending a political and spiritual message to the world, and therefore hippies flocked to concerts. Huge outdoor concerts were common, and there weren't the most appropriate showering facilities at these places. I'm sure there were also some who saw showering more than once a week as a waste of precious of time. Keep in mind, that this is still the amount of times between bathing in many modern European countries.
There are countless famous flower children, but the most famous would have to be John Lennon, and Donovan. John Lennon of course was a member of the Beatles, and ran mass protests throughout the 70's, along with making some of the most famous protest music such as "All We Are Saying is Give Peace a Chance" and "Power to the People". The Term "Flower Power" was first used in an article about Donovan, his roots as a beatnik show the beginning of the movement, and he was a bit of a spiritual leader for the masses.
"Apathy isn't it, and we can do something. Ok, so flower power didn't work, so what? We start again." -John Lennon
they reject the established culture and are a subculture originating in San Francisco in the 1960s who advocated universal love and peace, usually had long hair and used soft drugs, usually listen to acid rock and progressive rock music, reggae music such as that of bob marley.
Your modern day hippie is a white, middle-to-upper-middle class 20-year old college student. He (or she) will drive a hybrid or some other “green” car that they own because their yippie parents bought it for them.
He will live in your local coffee/tea café and go on and on about western or eastern philosophy, depending on his personal bent, until blood shoots out of your ears. When he runs out of pretentious, grandiose questions to pose, he will proceed to make Noam Chomsky look like Rush Limbaugh with his political rhetoric.
He will probably hang out with homeless people to earn “street cred,” not realizing that these same people want nothing more than this hippie to have a seizure from too much LSD so they can make off with a wallet full of cash.
Words such as “word,” “chill,” and “dank” will be used. These three words will most likely even be used in the same sentence to describe Phish to someone. He will treat the police like shit because the police are “the man” and more importantly, “the man who stole my drugs.”
What a shame that all of these free spirits will one day be shackled down with corporate jobs, wearing tailored suits, (and Jerry Garcia ties) telling their uninterested kids how awesome they once were.
Normal Guy: "Okay. Get rid of your North Face jackets."