Until recently, I never realized the full power of any communications medium. Usually, I take things like TV for granted. In my life, it has always been there. Except for a brief period of about a year in 1990, I have always watched it.
TV would have been first popular in the early 1950’s so it would not be until about then that the first pure TV consumers would have been born.
Before that, it was radio. Before that, it was newspapers. Before that, books? And before that, word of mouth?
The latest form is the Internet. Even though the Internet has existed since the late 60s, it was not until around 1993 that it met widespread adoption with the introduction of the first web browsers. The true Internet generation (born in the early 90’s) has not fully matured yet. This unique group of people are going to use the Internet in ways that cannot be easily imagined now.
The power of information is also the power of who controls it. Thoughts are formed centrally and dispersed for consumption by the masses. It is all so easy. All you need to do is watch.
It hit me recently that even the most casual TV watching can be damaging to independent thought. I experienced this in full during 1990 and the initial Gulf war. People at work would tell me about the video game like nature of bombs being dropped. Some people would feed off this stuff until late at night. It was new to reveal so much about the videos of the fighter/bombers. Somehow it became okay to show destruction through the cameras from afar.
Anyways, at the time, it seemed fairly obvious that the media was selling a military story. The price of admission was following the story.
Being isolated from TV at the time, I started to think differently. I wasn’t exposed to the thoughts directly and it made a big difference to how I looked at the situation. I would never have expected that this would make such a change.
The drive to sell a story for the sake of revenue creates a need for “thought leadership”. What this really means is that someone wants to do the thinking for you. The power comes from lack of resistance and the willingness to spend time and money on continuing the story forward.
It comes out that most people are happy to be sheep as long as everyone else is sheep as well. Leaders, who sometimes act as wolves, hide in the flock and consume what they want.
Secrets are largely the weapon of choice for information segregation. These secrets are seen as the defense against independent thinking. Secrets are really invested in for the sake of intelligence. Follow any agency around in earnest and find yourself the target of an agency that will do anything to protect its secrets.
This makes it sound like some kind of conspiracy theory. So untrue. It is just the realization that independent people are just independent thinkers. Either they are leaders themselves (with potentially no audience) or they have just disconnected from the world at large.
Everyone likes someone else to take the first step. Taking the risk of taking the first step wrong can often stop most people. What is little known is that these steps into the unknown are often taken with the same trepidation as the other people that don’t take any steps first. The only people that can take steps on their path without fear are the ones that don’t need leaders and don’t even care if anyone follows.
Personally, it all kind of makes me feel sick. It’s like the whole human earth is contaminated by the mirror neuron thinking which gives but also takes. Sickness runs deep within humanity and the pursuit to purify the soul only leads to more sickness. It gives cause to understanding that all desire only leads to more desire.
The hardest thing to do is to stop following.
The leader in front of you is not you.
The leader in you is the one you need to pay attention to.
Follow your own leader.