Posts Tagged ‘mind’

Crystallizing the public mind

Tuesday, December 4th, 2012

It has been said that no word has been so twisted as the word propaganda. The overtones are negative, but it still is practiced massively and at an advanced level in the modern world. It is a potent tool and it works well.

Propaganda is imperceptible, it is anonymous, it is clever, it is continuous, sometimes it is blatant, it has many forms – more than you can imagine, it is common, it is steadfast, if you expose it it changes its form – it is called public relations or publicity or advertising, but it is propaganda and it is directed at you personally in order to make you have certain desired attitudes. It is also directed at everybody else so that in sum it is making you behave like most other people. Propaganda makes you one of the masses, your mind has been crystallized into what the instigator of propaganda has intended.

Propaganda has become somewhat tainted as a concept and the modern words that are used are public relations or even information practices. But whatever the dress, it is wolf all the same so let propaganda be the name.

The definition of propaganda is not precise – it can be many things. It has to do with psychological action, education, public and human relations, but ends up by making you and the masses conform.

Mr. Bernays from the US is one of the fathers of public relations. He talks about crystallizing the public mind so that people think alike, and there is no confusion in society about what to do. Mr. Bernays has also written a book called Propaganda.

Mr. Ellul from France has written extensively on propaganda or the formation of men’s attitudes.

There is no doubt about it: We are all the aim of propaganda. It has been used consciously for centuries. The Germans had a propaganda ministry during WWII . The Turks or Osmans used advanced processes to overtake others including information that they would be taken and continuously playing janissar music until a military victory was achieved. Many governments, companies, organisations, individuals have been and are using propaganda to form opinion, to help us understand better what it is all about, and to do the right things.

Propaganda is probably first and foremost a sociological thing, it is not really about each one of us at all, it is about forming the decisions we collectively take. At the same time the propagandist must not forget the individual. Modern propaganda is therefore a complex powerful force and there is normally not much you can do to resist the impulses created.

If you want to find out what it is about, how you can resist it you must be very alert and determined and work hard. Propaganda is often soft and slippery and will lure your mind.

In a democratic society conscious and intelligent manipulation of what we usually do is done all the time. People we don’t see or have ever heard of are working to govern us, mould our minds, form our tastes, suggest ideas, show us effects. Many people are making a living rom propaganda.

The propagandist say that propaganda is required if society shall function well. The public mind must be focused or things will fall apart they say.

The propagandists see themselves as the key people of society, a small number of people placing themselves above us. These people understand us so well that they can guide us in the direction they want. Force is no use, elegance does it.

The plurality and diversity of society is slowly taken from us as propaganda fosters only one mindset, one way that is desirable, all others are suspect with negative connotations. The big issues are chosen for us and they are high-spotted so there is no doubt. Our minds are continuously targeted on behalf of policies, products and ideas.

Behind it all is competition in all its forms, the few are allowed to win by their competitive strengths which are capital, leadership and aggressiveness.

The results are widespread manipulation, use of huge personal egos and massive activity of all kinds – shows, competitions, advertising, stars, gifts….

Some say propaganda is indeed invisible government. Its technical means are well developed and they will get us all into the mindset of a few but big choices. Ideas are touted persistently and the technological society makes it possible. A common design is made for us, the possibility of global oneness is there with huge winnings made possible. Technologically we are developing fantastically and we are surely moving.

The themes of propaganda are racial, religious, social, political, sex, economical and the advantage of a coordination is obvious. The propagandist want an organized coordination of all things resulting in a group mindset and simplified mass thinking.

Yes you have seen it coming: We are being massively manipulated, and the means used are comprehensive, artful, knowledgeable – the media, the advertising, movies, activities of many kinds.

It is all really about power and domination, social issues, money. We are being used by others and we behave as if we like it. Our lives are shaped by others.

It could be otherwise – your life could be your own, made by you yourself. Don’t think or worry about propaganda, think deeply about yourself, choose and decide it all yourself, move in your own direction, be a creator of diversity.

Are you in control of yourself? Do you want to be?

Monday, November 19th, 2012

Your mind is the key to everything. Your physical and mental activity is ruled by your mind. Your mind is not a stable mechanism, it leads you all over, while at the same time you can exercise various degrees of control – if you put your mind to it. You can choose to use your mind as a tool to create a good life for yourself, or you can just let everything be taken care of for you – be in an automatic mode  and just let yourself be dragged along, almost imperceptibly.

The way to achieve control of your own mind is to eliminate all external influences completely, and at the same time work on understanding yourself, what you do, how you react, what you identify with. This is not easily done, and you must work hard to get close to a situation where you can say you are in control. You must change your life in thoroughgoing ways. You must shed all and don a new mental state where consciousness is king.

When all external influences are controlled you are in a position to wholly decide what to think and do. This also has to do with timing, place, importance. Then nobody can tell you a thing, you are all on your own, you are beginning to see the rudiments of freedom.

We all live under the influence of tremendous forces. The external forces are societal in the form of peer pressure, authority messages, media influences, seasonal variations. Internally your own morals and ethics play a part, your reasoning or logic based on your knowledge and what you think is right. The sum of these forces have a huge impact on you, they make you what you are.

The information explosion is part of this picture as there is a constant stream of  messages aimed at you, wanting to influence you – companies, government agencies, politicians,  media all want you to perform in certain ways. In the old days much of this was called propaganda, now it is part of the ongoing process of crystallizing public opinion, making you behave in certain predetermined ways.

Reading and reacting to advertizing is one bit, incessant negative news is another. Participation in arrangements, activities of many kinds are time thiefs of great importance.

The biggest influence on you is without doubt your work that occupies you maybe 10 hours or more every day all of your life, and fills your head with huge preoccupations, influencing your life immensely, often tying your mind into a knot.

Your family takes a major part of what time you have, severely limiting the time you have available to choose independendently.

The things you own are there too. All your belongings – dwellings, cars, boats, bicycles, clothes, books, tools, ….  - the list is endless – steal your time in all manners  you can think of.

And sure – we must not forget entertainment in many forms – time flies. And drugs and alcohol drowsing you into near unconsciousness.

So all is set up for you and your life flies away, into empty space. It is certainly OK in many ways, but your mind is turned off when you live like this.

Awareness of what you do is clearly lacking, and the result is a stupendous lack of time that you can call your own and none of what you do is chosen by you, you just react to influences all the time. Everything on the agenda is controlled by others and is aided and abetted by your own confusion, your sleeping mind.

Surely the aim must be to have a life of your own, to be able to do what you yourself want to do. This life can be a full life, creative, spiritual, engaged, attentive, included in the big system that the world is, engaged with likeminded people.

The choice is yours: engage your mind, wake up, decide things, do things.

Go be like that – fix your own mind and your life will follow suit. Surely you want that?