RUN FOR YOUR LIVES!
THE CULTS ARE COMING!
And tons of cosmic dust fall to the earth each day, but who is looking? The sky may not quite be falling, but the cults are already here.
A Tucson paper recently ran a story about the “sect” that has moved into the Tumacacori area. I keep an interest in cults and alleged cults because I was once a member of one. I lived in a predominately Christian based community, working full time for nothing, nothing but the intentional and reflective lifestyle that such communities provide. Some alleged cults are similar and others very different to the extreme. Others still, are only effectively cults for those inside the organization.
I mentioned to someone in the Tumacacori area that I was once in a cult, and she asked if it was a good one or a bad one. There are these relative to experience distinctions.
In the early mid eighties I milked cows 12 hours apart for years. In-between, I chain sawed wood during the day, split wood all day for days on end. Other times I plowed fields, planted and tended to acres of flowers and squash, mowed acres of lawn on foot, weeded, and helped build buildings. I also became a member of the Service Team, at times holding services and speaking extemporaneously on topics such as truth and heartfelt living for the better part of an hour. You probably never heard of the church I was in, but it is on several continents and its leaders converse with spiritual and world leaders around the world.
The group was a good cult in a way, my life certainly grew. They also worked on the premise that all your choices were your own responsibility, giving the appearance that the group itself asked nothing particular of you, but for you to be who you really are. Unfortunately, the reality of self perpetuating human behavior patterns and organizational status hierarchies made it obvious that privilege continued to work its inherent inequalities, yet questions, essentially, could not be asked, any problems were of your own doing.
Yet a cult is a cult for one overriding issue; its ability to damage your life. When you are in one you do not know or believe that you are, you know it by the exiting. At a service I brought up the hypocrisies and contradictions I saw in and around me in the leadership, and that was that.
You may leave after all your efforts, with the shirt on your back and no further contacts from the organization. They retain the physical benefits of all that you did, and for some ex members, their choice and decision making abilities may be crippled. Manipulative metaphysical or other ideologies that promote perpetual fear can stalk their lives. They might live with the pain and regret of leaving family members behind in the cult who now disown them. Those who leave can be seen by their ex friends as some sort of failure that should not be welcomed in to pollute your well-being–being that you are securely under the cults controls.
Years after, I attended cult awareness meetings in Tucson. There I learned of the horrible physical abuse and intimidation or spiritual damnation some are subjected to. It was notable that some of the most admittedly damaged people were from certain now quite mainstream churches.
I have heard since that time (early 90’s) the national cult awareness group was taken over by a self proclaimed religion who has vast wealth and tons of lawyers in its ranks. They are known for attacking any who suggest they are a cult. When inside such a group you are a fortunate chosen one, a true believer and resent the arrogance and nerve of others insinuating there is something amiss in your beliefs or free will workings. How can this divine perfection be faulty?
THE APPEAL OF THE FOUND
Those who wish to control your will for their interest know well of human alienation and how a technique called ”love bombing” can seduce an individuals inner yearning for expanded connection. Suddenly a leader or group shows you their undivided attention. Like expert salespersons, they are interested in all that you do, seem to agree with your every question and doubt, but most importantly, treat you as you wish you were treated; with full attention, compassion and apparent respect. A favorite come-on is; “I was just like you!” Then they describe their “awakening”.
Slowly or quickly you fall into line, cripple your ability to question such perfectly well meaning people who seem to have all your interests at heart. They appear loving, earnest and sure, a position you yourself might yearn for. If not initially, eventually you will be indoctrinated into the “otherness” of the non followers. They are to be enticed, ignored or occasionally attacked by inference from the podium. And suspicion that their ways may come to corrupt you is always kept near your own front burner.
Are you ever a perfect enough believer or follower? Aren’t you hiding some sense of failure about your own behavior or thoughts and the belief abstractions you now say you completely submit to? There is an inner battle going on between your beliefs and behavioral urges that you may try to keep hidden.
Scapegoats can become an outer target for your own inner torment. You might attempt to persecute or damn those in the world that you are certain have those internal enemy flags flying high. You are psychologically set up to go after those outsiders to seem as if you are making progress in your own inner battle. Once inherent goodness is conserved to your group identity, you can be sure of the bad running rampant in that outside world.
A misguided trust and its loyalty then become a kind of inner firewall, you cannot fully question, for then it would throw your whole cosmology into chaos. Loyalty instead of truth becomes ones guide, conservatives of all ideologies (even some on the left) depend on this convolution of cause. As a nation we have been witness to a seemingly endless line of conservatives being found out to be practicing the very behaviors they damn in others.
There is a connection to the personal insides of those who persecute others for their lack of perfection, thus building heart firewalls. Manipulators know how to use this phenomenon of projection, or self deception and denial to their advantage in controlling their followers, and targeting their enemies. It becomes a reliable automatic pilot of reaction.
There is a relaxing surrender that occurs under your own domination. Others tell you how to think directly or by suggestion, what to think about, and what to do essentially, all while you may be trusting that all is well, and that you are doing the good and right thing unquestionably by your choices. You are part of one positive force, what is there to question? It is comfortable to know most in your own group think, well, almost exactly like you. Many cult members have this very peaceful conformity surrender; all is taken care of, nothing much to worry about, unless of course, they wake up.
Can it happen to you? In the 70’s I was sitting on a college student union steps in California. A thirty something black woman with a teenage white boy began talking to me. They were very nice. It was intriguing to wonder about their connection. I had a tee shirt on and the temperature had fallen into the fifties. The boy offered me his jacket to keep. They were from the Peoples Temple, concerned how cold I was and mentioned that he would not need the jacket in British Guyana where their group was soon moving.
I have assumed that they died at the murder-suicide scene at Jonestown. Alone, I was a probable target for conversion. Luckily, at that time I was not planning on joining anything and had a suspicion about those who approach you with the answer to your needs–no strings attached, at least not visible until it is to late. Curiously, now we have those who seemingly wish to be part of hastening a cataclysmic “Armageddon”, and presumably feel divinely empowered, good and righteous in fulfilling “prophesy” in doing so.
On the individuals imaginary fair playing field of idea, it is hard to imagine how ill prepared one can be. When cults approach you, you do not know that they are prepared. They are well armed with the arguments tested on perhaps thousands of doubters. You, the target, may be naive or at least not at all prepared for the contrapuntal circular logic barrage and ad-hominem emotional barbed wire they have laid out for your arguments. Some work in teams, so that your wagons are circled, and they do not intend on giving up. But they will if you have what it takes to stand up for your own life–a healthy critical mind.
Being intelligently skeptical is not about approaching life as a cynic. It is about having your critical thinking abilities intact and being committed to factual truth as you are able to receive it. Whether of religion, business or the political left or the right, a kind of predator stalks the landscape. They seek to dominate individual minds. Just as I am doing here, they attempt to have you only see things their way, but unlike me, they try to continually control your access to information, and so perpetually guide perceptual assumption.
They may, like some individuals, religions and corporations, continuously try to program into you what life is all about. Then they create a poisoning of the well as to contrary assumptions to their ideology. They are about commandeering your will, stealthily getting you to perceive and act as they want, while thinking the desire is your own. Regardless of the apparent ills of the individual, family, workplace, community or world one constant remains; status and power accumulate under many a spiritual, economic and political leaders wings. It is working for them, it being your catatonic submission to their opportunity of advantage.
Arguments that depend on deception; false assumption, incomplete analysis, cherry picked facts, false analogy and erroneous emotional associations have long been known to greatly influence the unprepared. The mind control techniques employed by most power elite’s throughout the ages are hard wired into many cultures and belief systems because they deliver the goods to the dominator or elite in the easiest way possible; get the subjects to accept and even demand their own submission–by subverting their own given critical thinking abilities that seek survival via the real, honest to goodness fact filled truth.
The liberalism that has, (more recently in historical terms,) allowed the individual to attempt to think for themselves was achieved at great pain and sacrifice in overthrowing the stranglehold of power elite’s. Inherently unfair economic advantages, now accentuated in the postindustrial world, that lead to mass hidden media propaganda strategies are allowing the manipulative arts and sciences of persuasion to empower those same kinds of forces to take those freedoms right out of our hands.
To hold such abstractions as freedom, democracy and liberty as a people, it is necessary for the respect of those abstractions to apply universally, not only available to certain privaleged people. Even from the inception of this nation the blindfolds were on to the indigenous, the poor as well as women and minorities. We can think we believe or are something solid in our imaginations and be quite mistaken in our assumptions.
WHEN VIRUSES HIJACK HEALTH
Unequal advantages are known to tempt believers into believing they are something fair-minded when their behaviors prove they are not, however since abstractions are detached concepts, we can move them around in our mental perceptions–our own inner shell game. We can claim to be for free enterprise while we seek to undo our competitors. We can claim to be for peace or the Prince of Peace, and in the next breath talk of finishing off our enemies. We can claim to be for a healthy environment since we know life itself depends on it, yet love those profits our polluting stock portfolios (or lifestyles!) are pumping into the air, or dumping into the not bottomless pit called earth. It is no hollow theory to suggest many of us will look the other way when it is to our subjective situational advantage to do so. To be a responsible person, it is necessary, then, to challenge myself to be truthful, that takes some courage, courage I will not summon if I have been thoroughly seduced by my advantages.
Unfortunately for the present and for history, we have good evidence that advantage and its intrinsic irresponsibility’s have acquired much pretense to nobility. Leaders of many types, and those who benefit from association with them, take thorough advantage of their position, even when those advantages run counter to basic belief identities.
A culture is created that is saturated with the shell games of perceptual diversion, abstract “branding” appearing as the frame of the individuals identity. Inner heart firewalls are created. The big take advantage of the small, or you grab while in effect someone else is not looking. You must get ahead, or you are doing this or that for your families interest or even the nations, as if that can truly be abstracted away from the interest of all life, as if I am a molecule deciding I no longer am confined by gravity because it has something inherent to do with the commons. I can claim that and feel as if it is true for me, yet be solidly delusional. Most conservative impulses seek to deny something life is showing as a reality, and putting up firewalls of shame, ostracism, or total exclusion to pretend reality can be fixed by coating it with abstractions detached by denial from reality. Conservatism is about mechanically manufacturing identities on assembly lines.
This is not to say the conservative impulse is invalid. It is pointing to something fundamentally important, however its defensiveness betrays its flaw, that it seeks to deny rather than be open to understanding. Separation seeks to validate its severance from the fulness of being. To use that molecule metaphor; a water molecule decides it is carbon instead, and will do what carbon does, then goes on to interpret perception as if it were actually doing so. To an outside observer, the carbon ideology looks absurd, how can water think that way? Cant it see how mistaken it is? No! Not if it does not have the means or desire to detect truth from belief or faith. Not if there is not some mechanism with integrity to compare all the facts to see if they meet up with the reality of the abstract idea. We cannot know the truth if we do not allow ourselves full access to its living revelation. That is the vaccine; to be able and willing to question.
THE FOURTH ESTATE IS THE ULTIMATE HEALTH CARE PROVIDER
At great peril to us, the institutional safeguard of the “fourth estate”, has itself been compromised to corporate bottom lines, its integrity erased in that case. We are left as if in a cult, with controlled information and debate, while what is left calls itself the free press. (It’s what people want to read!”) What honestly can we make of what we hear from the failed state of our most common information conduits?
It is not about condemning persuasion, to determine what is true we need to compare our notes. That requires freedom and liberty to do so. It is about rejecting the poisoning of objective powered perception, opinion is not equal to what is actually true. There are many fold attempts to close your naturally inquisitive mind, to make you weak and soft enough to surrender your abilities to be objective for your own good. If we are to look at society and the worlds dysfunctioning, it is wrought with embedded manipulative deceptions masquerading as cultural imperatives.
We have just seen the attempt to institute a one party system in the United States. On many fronts, one party is seeking to completely undo the other. Just think of that implication; political competition is equated with corporate monopoly status. It’s the us or them takeover mentality, nothing fair about it. Most of the public is reduced to bystander status. Whatever happened to democracy? It’s very assumption rest on fairness! We are being rendered subjects to manipulative conservative elite’s for a reason; the toxin has been being infused into fact, opinion and debate itself. Whether it is the subconscious collusion that advantage wreaks upon individual consciousness, or outright dominator bids to control our thoughts and desires, the result is the same. Ignorance breeds darkness, an essential ingredient for the conservative mind set of separation, superiority and entitlement.
As long as there is still a pretense to democracy, (democracy is rendered superficial when economic or other interest are allowed special access, which they are by their privilege of holdings) politicians need to entice enough voters to win. I often call this seduce because the game is to get that score in their column so they can then go on to do what they wish for who is really their benefactor. I present this cynically because with so many corruption cases revealed about conservative manipulations of democratic institutions, the entire group seems to benefit from its often collective looking the other way from responsibility.
Ignorance has remained the conservatives best friend. Not knowing why you think your candidate thinks like you because they give you all the words and signs, yet your basic life pressures continue to mount. Not knowing why the world has problems with US corporatist influence peddling. Not even knowing that exist. Not knowing politicians, police, priest and preacher are not guaranteed integrity by their status quo position. Ignorance of why other belief systems have validity to those who follow them. All this ignorance that might even allow ones own life to stand above the worlds, simply because of so much hidden deception that vacuums up energy from around the globe.
Not knowing, can be an opportunist best friend, for they can do what they do while resenting being held responsible let alone accountable for the consequence of their belief and action. Those who seduce roll out the same issues near election times; abortion, flag burning, now illegal immigration, and on and on. Some of the so called more liberal party are just as manipulative. I trust you can see that manipulators actually do not intend on ending these problems, because they work time and time again to seduce enough to win.
We have fundamental problems of information access, democracy, institutional justice, civil rights, environmental damage, corporate responsibilities, health care, etc., that the conservative forces particularly, wish never to be straightforwardly addressed. We are endlessly diverted from attention and polluted by supposition because of the power elite’s position to do so. This leaves our “free will” a ball to be tossed around by dominator manipulation strategies.
Ex cult members can become particularly sensitized to will manipulation, suddenly perceiving how they themselves, or parents, friends, employers, schools, bureaucracies, states, religion, politicians and advertisers, etc., count on steering the individuals self perception by articulating the very definition of what it is to be who you are. (Ever work for someone who treated you like a second class citizen?) But you and you alone are the caretaker of your authentic being, and how sure am I that I am that one, the intended me, and not some other subconscious committees hijacked creation? Only self questioning can answer that. That, ultimately, is what freedom and responsibility are about.
EXPOSING THE MEDIUMS THAT GROW DECEPTION
Cult like principles of manipulation are used by some mainstream groups to solidify their hold on their own members. One of our political parties is quite notable for its cult like loyalty organization and more recently much more cult like behavior. (The damage is being done to the nation, the world.) They thrive on the us against them mentality, a mindset that creates those outside others who come to embody an allegedly evil force. Point this out to them and they might conclude it is you who are being just that! Supporting the evil force by your very criticism of them. They give us the evidence of the snapped circular mind-traps they are in. They are not open to substantiative outside questioning.
The world is now enduring the face-off of these kinds of conservative leaders and followers, where critical thinking abilities and the search for objective truth are thrown to the wayside to promote the insecure based group-think fight for domination and control. Fear provides the groundwork for the endless rationalizations. Mystification and domination often go hand in hand. Whether “wedge issues” that promote local enemies, or other beliefs made assuredly into outer enemies, loathing is guaranteed, love and humanity suppressed.
Look into the world and see how much of it is filled with notions and ideas that are always comparing you to being a have or have not; you do or don’t have the right religion, the right career, the right car, the right computer, on and on, most often implying, are you an us or a them. Just as in smaller cults, the cultures or followers of separation/alienation belief systems do not know how they are being manipulated, nor how their life and the worlds is being damaged while delusional designs for an allegedly “perfect world” without those others is pursued as if it were the best, the only thing.
My opinion is that this will end, if it makes it that far, at the one world corporation. Competition will be vanquished so that the united companies can manage the worlds riches to their advantage. The illusion of diversity can be the varieties of brand names (state, religion, to product implications) that will manage the individuals condoned illusions of uniqueness and free choice. A new version of the dictatorship of the proletariat will be in effect, where, thanks to mind control and always needing the latest technology, they will keep the populations addicted to the status quo. The public at large is the destined base of a new Pharaohs pyramid scheme.
Imagine the leverage over the individuals will the dominators will have to threaten the behavior and so survival of those vested in the company with removal of stock fortune. In recent US elections, the conservatives have set up offices to show their desire to punish companies who aided the more liberal party. We can be quite certain that they are learning from their mistakes. With the absence of effective corporate consolidation opposition, and big money being able to buy out access to democracy, business practicalities do and will trump individual rights, yet another top down society. Conformity will be the norm. For hierarchies to guarantee security, whether of religion, the left or the right, they pretty much all end up at the same place. The followers are the well managed suckers.
The continuing attempt by market theocrats to dominate the conservative party shows no real signs of letting up. It has been revealed how any who disagree with the insider trading group on American civil rights and democracy are shown the door. What does the free press do? Well, they will wait until someone brings the issue up, then existentially relativize it as if we were all an umbilical tube watching helpless bystander to the makers and shakers of destiny. Stunning to here some analyst say regarding the turning of the back on American rights and freedoms; ‘Things have never gone this far in that direction.’ Then come the endless gossip and sports scores.
We have recently witnessed how 70% of the population can be easily misled into untruths, steered blindly by “fear bombing”, the other side of the coin of “love bombing”. Allegedly in 2007, 50% still believe the dead Iraqi leader had something specific to do with 9-11, even though the overwhelming evidence is that he did not.
It is necessary to comprehend how such a huge misleading distortion can be perpetrated across such a broad spectrum of society, even in the face of the honest truth. It would necessitate the compromise of essential institutions on which freedom and democracy have heretofore depended for survival. The aforementioned erroneous ideas have led to the deaths of many tens of thousands. If it is just OK with us to sacrifice the historical legacy that has brought us what we have, the poison laced punch loyalty test may not be that far away.
It is no accident that the world is turning out the way it is when so many of its citizens have betrayed or have removed their own inner guidance system, and instead submitted to the will of others who use them as a raw resource to manipulate for domination.
A QUESTION OF REVIEW
When we do not think for ourselves, because we are unprepared to question our own assumptions. When we do not question authority because we have surrender our identity of will to the “experts”. When we do not listen to the hurts of others, do not listen to the needs of one another and the planet. When we do not stand up for our greater home that is home to Life, we have abandoned who we really are. We have fallen for the blind narrowness of conservatism or alienation. Fallen for thinking we already know, so life has nothing new. Then someone else’s plans are paved right over you.
In that case we have betrayed our most intimate and important commission; to stand up honestly for Life as it is. We have betrayed what Life has for us to do forthrightly in what is a living and changing place. We in effect say; “I am equally satisfied in serving a lie as if it were the truth.”, unable to know the difference for we are unable to critically hold our ideas to task.
Those beliefs must prove to be true convincingly in my own life, and even then I may know them, I cannot force feed that awareness to someone else. Those concepts do not honestly stand as truth by assumption no matter how much faith I have that that is the case. It is the difference between being rightly free and responsible, or surrendering to a kind of Stockholm Syndrome; where the interest, trials and tribulations of those who dominate you are taken in as your own. Then those who claim to have the power by position to know, falsely stand in for your own free will, a pervasive, invasive fear driving that self defeats insecurity bonded lifeblood of non-responsibility.
Now that the corporate controlled media has essentially surrendered its journalistic integrity to its economic bottom line, we as a nation are left to our own devises to discover the real truth behind the facts. That, or continue with our implicit self-deceptive subservience. For most of us now, church, corporate or governmental individuals and policies are effectively censoring the parameters of both information access and debate itself. We are handed what to think about and how to perceive the issues. That is how it is possible to deceive a country and world on such a monumental scale.
Tens of millions of Americans a day get their how not to think straight instructions in ad-hominem logic from right wing radio and TV personalities. Right wing tellevangelist instruct their followers how not to be liberal like Jesus Christ was. An alleged liberal media’s bias is continually attacked as if that were a bad thing. The news media should be liberal! It should present diverse opinion and news stories that we all do not necessarily approve of or want to hear. That is what a free and responsible press and society is.
It is not surprising that the elite’s find a true freedom of “We the People” highly objectionable. Fundamental rights such as Habeus Corpus are removed as if they were tricks in a shell game. Your “right to vote” is merely a privilege that can be taken away. How is that for spreading freedom and democracy to the world? The executive branch decides it has dictatorial power if it feels like it. The very spirit of America is being overthrown while we are told over and over what Paris Hilton is doing. Imagine that choice being made somewhere to follow dysfunctional individuals instead of major dysfunctional policies, when one actually affects our lives and the other does not, except by its negative presence.
RETURNING SELF CONTROL TO THE RIGHTFUL OWNER
What do I not get about unfair influence and what implications that has to an honest life? I might not know that while watching the news, the network has a policy equipping 2 conservative talking heads for every liberal one and that the appearance of consensus is being skewed. Since I cannot afford to hire my own think tank to make my interest seem much more palatable to the public, I might not know that conservative institutes have seeded the “talking head” experts supermarket of ideas to be filled with mostly their products. I might mistakenly construe that I actually did have inalienable rights, or that the rule of law was something solid to count on. I might be actually that naive. I might not comprehend how my own and societies interest are being kept in a coral, as if we were all cows to be milked and ground up when our efforts are over.
Free will and a free press are equally able to be misguided and self deceptive while denying any lack of freedom or honesty. Manipulators know this juxtaposition/self delusion can be fundamental in tricking self perception. Concept control and repetition as an illusion of fact are routinely used while depending on your inability to detect the distortions being imposed on your free will assessments. The essential question of cults is the question of ownership of ones own will. My will seems to be my own obviously, but why I do what I do or believe in what I do is open to question, if and only if I want to know what my life is truly about. What do I expect in life? What are my ambitions and goals? Do they truly fit into the big picture that is the community of Life?
Life is one grand codependency no matter how “individualistic” I think I am. Ideas and actions follow some connection to reality, and reality is ultimately a matrix of one process, no matter how tenuously, well or ill understood. Consciousness has consequences and so does consensus, that extend well beyond my own wills superficial individualistic holdings.
Conservatives in our culture like to speak of individual merit and responsibility, yet they essentially truncate those concepts to their most superficial surfaces. Mostly conservatives point at someone else to claim they have no merit, or exhibit insufficient responsibility, thus deserving exclusion from something. They are essentially shame based, relying on that primitive fear of ostracism that leaves you really socially alone and vulnerable. They do not mind making claims on the things of creation for themselves; property, divinity, freedom and even rights, but have no interest in broadening those definitions to truly represent the connections those individualistic definitions impact.
We have witnessed how conservative representatives squirm to deny global warming is real or has any connection to their actions. Why? They despise being held accountable themselves! They do well by the lifestyle status quo propping them up. Conservatism is about being certain by concept belief, arrogant, comfortable in certitude of goodness and self righteousness and dismissive of those who think differently, hostile towards those who think opposite. Most importantly; all beyond fundamental questioning. That is how status and deception work to institute such hierarchies that coral perception by self deception. To rise yourself up as a separate success you need to stand on someone else’s back, no matter how much blanketing over redefinition’s of back one rationalizes to actually mean something positive and nobel about your spikes.
As appealing as cults and conservatism are to rationalize a right to assumed status, as much as conservatism caters to a security blanket of abstractions for dysfunction and laziness of mind and heart, it is self defeat, it is surrender. It is tempting to separate oneself away from others or life, make them out to be alien or irrelevant. That state of mind lets one relax into their ideology or doctrine.
In there, life seems certain and there is little left to understand. Conservatism is often stifled in doctrine, essentially afraid to think live for oneself. Frequent repetition of group merit, and the lack thereof in others, is the group-think matrices many operate their perspective on reality from. It is with that reversal of responsibility that they hold everyone else up to standards of behavior embodied by the abstractions but quite possible not their own true actions. Yet in conservatism’s bubble of denial, verifying actual truth is way off limits.
Conservatism has the disadvantage of being delusional compared to liberalism, not that liberalism implies correct interpretation of reality or honor to its adherents. Some certainly use liberalism to hide their challenges. While conservatism conserves its notions of value and honor as coming with the group conceptual identity, liberalism should not be certain. Liberalism in some respects has no there there.
Conservative critics can look at its apparent relaxation of judgment and assume liberalism actually supports the dysfuntions it does not spend all of its time not pointing its fingers at. Political and some right wing Christian based discourse is frequently alluding to the notion that liberals are “for” the sins or dysfuntions most find revolting. By inference then the right wing side is the right side, because on their separated out surface, their ideology does not claim to encourage dysfunction as they know it. In fact it most often makes much of its rightness in the notion that it punishes dysfunction and is then doing something about it as opposed to liberals.
It is fundamentally strange and twisted how a conservatism that claims to be about merit and responsible living, is often on the side of preventing individuals from even having challenges in life. Following like sheep (or laws oof the forbidden) without a will or ability to grow more than hair to be sheared, (within the conservative delusion,) somehow makes one supremely meritorious.
I suppose that without a mind left to work with nuance and ambiguity, let alone question authority, one is in a dead end enough state not to be making known sin. When I quit drinking alcohol more than two decades ago, I wished it had never been there to challenge me in the first place. But I know that that learning experience let my spirit and will grow much above where they had been.
While I was a full fledged member of a “cult” the very associations of belief served as a life mission security blanket. I was totally on the side of good. The groups lens of its reality paradigm cast the world into its formula. Language was altered to have words posses special meanings to the group. “Buzz words” instantly summed up the groups merit in its conceptual identity, while negative ideas covered that outside world in quick summation. Life in that conservative context seemed both clear and meaningful. I was fortunate that that group did not have the warlike defense/offense mentality common to many conservative mindsets and cults.
THE MAKING OF THE FALSE DICHOTOMY
Us vs. them is the essence of conservatism. Many self contradicting proclamations issue logically from conservatives dysfunctional perspective. A xenophobic world view places both fear and “otherness” as interpretive governors of perception. To conservatives, humankind is not united as humanity. All the commonly held human nature experiences are divorced from reality.
To closed off mindsets, we do not have the same needs such as the need for respect, the need to be heard, the need to care and be cared for, the need to be understood, the desire to be loved. Most conservative hierarchal belief systems systematically deny their own people this sort of access to the heart and mind of their fellow beings. As conservatives separate others away into what they believe is a realm of darkness as far as their ideology is concerned, they separate themselves away into a realm of darkness.
How can I not equate liberalism and conservatism equally? We all have some liberal and conservative tendencies. The impulse is valid, because in the animalistic world of might makes right, separation works as does altruism. Once we rise above that law of the jungle, a much broader perspective is possible.
Many religious and philosophical perceptions and experiences, as well as artistic and humanitarian ones, touch into the broad sense of being human and part of it all. Liberalism in its basic form furthers the understanding of the world by the realities on the ground and in our potential. Conservatism is walled off into some form of alienation, never to be reviewed fundamentally again.
It (conservatism) is about denial of true positive value and meaning in difference. It institutes barriers to understanding others and their ways. Most conservatism features cults of personality to adapt ones own to. Even if it is allowed to analyze otherness in a pretense that it is open minded, it contains its irrevocable assumptions of special privilege or dispensation for conformity to hierarchy as the ground it stands on. That much conservative ideology is supported mostly by the location the individual was born in, where the prevailing standards and norms are programed in without regard to their possible inherent subjectivity, is not thought of as a challenge or contradiction at all.
In separation ideologies, apparent surface separation in consciousness is proof of separations validity as well as the alienation assumption. With so much of the rest of the world essentially having its own sets of assumptions, those are most often thought of as being irrelevant or a threat to the culture the individual is in. The likelihood of misunderstanding and misinterpreting others, then, is high of the probability scale. The answer to conflict is likely to be interpreted animalistically/territorially.
The base of most conservatism is force, a foot placed on your mind and heart, and a foot placed on your life if you challenge the bonded in dysfunction group-think dynamic. Conservatism is in that sense, the self punishing itself and the world for its own error of judgment, unable to think integrated, open and free and alive. A self condemned to its own conceptual prison, where its very world view is its own punishment. It is no accident that conservatives in their own right worship punishment as the nearest they get to the proximity of truth, reality, and in some cases the love of God.
For conservative separation based belief systems that thrive on perpetual human alienation, your beliefs do not count if they are not quite alike. Your claims do not count if they are not the same as theirs. Your life does not count equally unless you submit to their hierarchies of status and power, then of course where are you? They are then in denial of reality and followers of institutionalized delusional bias. The slavery is in the mindless conformity backed up by institutional terror tactics. These groups are actively at work in the world to deny universal community, rights and discussion, leaving hearts and minds oblivious to the common purpose of being alive and well.
THE GREAT DIVIDE
The fact that human beings often place a specific value on individualistic being, allowing some to seem more important than others, institutes a problematic scheme into relationship. Depending on the culture then, birth is a primary determinate in availability and access to the material (sometimes other) things of life. After that, personal merit may make some difference by culture, but mostly association to privilege and its ways furthers that access. If for any other reasons one finds themselves inhibited by birth or association, much access is institutionally denied.
This system is then inherently unjust, allowing human beings to at times capriciously determine the worth of ones being by arbitrarily ascribed value and bias. These represent constant threats to responsible freedom, liberty and that inalienable equality one has of being a living presence on earth with intrinsic potentials, now by systems dynamics suppressed.
Conservatives should know that tax cuts do not escape the Tax. The wealthy may like their place by the sea, or their ability to do or go practically wherever they want, but this only occurs because of their tax on us and everything else. Built in obsolescence and shoddy engineering is a huge tax which gets socialized. Exposing your workers to who knows what then having them cough up their hard earn dollars years later to pay for the damage, is socialized medicine, for the elite. Global damage such as climate change increased by human activities is a tax on all who will come.
Business cost as well as profit gets passed on to the consumer, (a one way street) meaning businesses socialize their expenses and earnings via various pyramid schemes. The wealthy benefit in uncounted ways by their own socialist structures they have taxed the populations with, and yet the no more tax mantra works over and over again on followers who think that benefits them. On top of that, anyone suggesting a fair allocation of basic survival rights is called a socialist, or someone looking for a handout. An amazing diversion of sight, based on perpetual darkness.
It is quite a deal they have when their think tanks find a fissure to wedge the electorates emotions against, to shoot themselves in the foot. Conservatism is strangely enough, a tax on the past, the present and the future that always benefits the predators of others taloned will. It is a perpetual block to the presence of love in the world.
As if finding ourselves trapped inside a cult, to be free of its institutional bias, one must research the truth independently. An honest life is only as possible as the validity of its information and the ability to question. We are all given a mind to seek out true relationships and discern them from the false, and a heart capable of knowing what is just.
Most of us wish for a grand life, perhaps filled with love, friends, comfort and joy. Our grandiose senses lack of apparent manifestation is often catered to by religion and materialist advantage, where some jewel box of ideas or investments will guarantee us a grand time while we live and maybe even especially after we die. Meanwhile process is all ever-present.
Life is already unimaginably grand in its infinite magnitudes, squarely present in and around your life. Your story is part of the Big Story. It all seems to be a question of either being in a sense of imprisonment; constantly pursuing some sense of grandeur while something always threatens personal peaceful security, or reveling in the privilege of being a part of the big picture with authentic self fulfillment.
Do I see myself as some lone individual beset by so many challenges I am kept out of myself, by perceptual bars, perhaps trying to defend my life, family or tribe, or am I capable of being awestruck by the grand fortune it is to be alive and a part of it all? Community is actually universal and in some respect so is the self. When that human thinking water molecule meets the waves momentum it is in intimate connection with the process of what is moving with water life, revealing it always was! If that molecule thinks it is carbon, life will seem unfathomable and chaotic, probably requiring much rationalization and imagination to get back to the illusory steady state notion that it is carbon.
These sorts of comparisons of states of consciousness are currently kept away from consideration by many interest, interested in preserving their own turf status and power over the individual by limiting individual and societal perception. Fear, smoke and mirrors and trinkets still capture attention away from many of the deeper meanings to life, particularly if awareness of life’s incredible meaning is skewed to maintaining a suitable predatory state for power interest. Humankind has tremendous unrealized potential kept under wraps of denial. Dimensions of the power of love remaining unrealized.
The old warlord mentality has morphed into a less obvious domination strategy; where promises, hopes, expectations and desire revolve around the insecure individuals stress drive to achieve some security in systems that seem like treadmills, effectively leaving us as addicts to spiritual and materialistic drug lords. The odds are that much of our lives are under someone else’s control, no matter how independent I think I am. So it is in Hamlet; “To be, or not to be: that is the question:”–William Shakespeare. In this consideration: To be or not be who I am: that is now open to question.
Afraid the cults are coming to a neighborhood near you? Don’t worry. They are already here, and we may be their mindlessly manipulated followers. How can I know who I truly am and what may be in the actual world? It is not enough to question authority, it is necessary to question ourselves.