The Cult of Persuasion


statue depicting a sad woman in recoleta cemetery, buenos aires - argentina

We would all like to believe that we are independent free thinkers that can formulate original ideas and assess the validity of the opinions’ of others but I have found much of this to be an illusion and contrarily this foretold claim is not present in most people I’ve encountered.  Do you know someone that belongs to a cult?   The answer may surprise you!

If you shut down debate by emotionalizing an argument, or if you appeal to the many ways of false ad hominem arguments, then you are effectively letting your bias interfere with your critical thinking.  These techniques are numerous in social media and conversation today.

 See various common forms of fallacious arguments:(https://thundergodblog.com/2014/01/20/logical-fallacies-and-false-syllogisms/)

 

Mirriam Webster

Definition of cult

  1. 1 :  formal religious veneration :  worship

  2. 2 :  a system of religious beliefs and ritual; also :  its body of adherents

  3. 3 :  a religion regarded as unorthodox or spurious; also :  its body of adherents

  4. 4 :  a system for the cure of disease based on dogma set forth by its promulgator <health cults>

  5. 5 a :  great devotion to a person, idea, object, movement, or work (as a film or book); especially :  such devotion regarded as a literary or intellectual fad b :  the object of such devotion c :  a usually small group of people characterized by such devotion

The overlap of cults and culture

Cult, which shares an origin with culture and cultivate, comes from the Latin cultus, a noun with meanings ranging from “tilling, cultivation” to “training or education” to “adoration.” In English, cult has evolved a number of meanings following a fairly logical path. The earliest known uses of the word, recorded in the 17th century, broadly denoted “worship.” From here cult came to refer to a specific branch of a religion or the rites and practices of that branch, as in “the cult of Dionysus.” By the early 18th century, cult could refer to a non-religious admiration or devotion, such as to a person, idea, or fad (“the cult of success”). Finally, by the 19th century, the word came to be used of “a religion regarded as unorthodox or spurious.”

In my observance of everyday conversation in social media I have noticed trends in the structure of assertions others make in their communications.  Because of my own educational background, I have found problematic logical anomalies in these common assertions that seem to sway the beliefs of the unsuspecting participants.  This is unfortunate because after studying these exchanges of dialog, it is clear some people fall into the trappings of these logical fallacies that persuade many others despite the flawed reasoning.
The “hive” mind is observed in a conversation that often resorts to using misrepresented data points to further an argument.  If you vet the source of the statistical inferences, carefully look at the data, then it is possible to clear the argument of bias and strip it down without convolution of the premise.  Much of what we find today is loaded with misleading false narratives that are designed to sway you by lacing the argument with an emotional bias and sophistry.

One can easily recall the advertising industry to see countless and baseless examples of using fallacious and emotionalized narratives to sell their products.  Actually you can find many examples in how our own government agencies use language and semantics to further a cause.  Look at money and our current financial economic policies.  Banking regulations, fiat currencies, and legal jargon prevent many people from understanding its design and is used against them all the time.  It was written not for the people, but rather is written to benefit the private bankers, financiers who authored these systems.  Simply look to the federal reserve; a private bank in control of deflating and inflating our currency backed by nothing, (fiat currency) which has usurped the constitution altogether.

When we bring in the debt of printing this fraudulent currency waged against the people, we invent a non-ratified, unappropriated tax on our labor to help pay for this unconstitutional agency called the Federal Reserve which controls the Internal Revenue Service.  Since we have been duped into believing that we have to pay this tax, (amendment) people usually do or risk of having house and home taken away.  Our culture is full of this kind of bureaucracy that has poisoned the wells of the intellectually free minded citizens.  Scores of educational controversy has taken root in our school systems.  The subversive takeover of our children’s minds has historical precedence in many countries around the world.  In the country we have dealt with “no child left behind”, and “common core” among earlier infusions of propagandizing the “red scare” to our school children.

Persuasion itself is not under attack in this piece.  Rather, the logical fallacies that are used to persuade people is!  Debate is something I believe to be a healthy productive activity, but when you are diminished by being called a fascist, racist, or some other explicative; under false premises, than I think we have a problem.  The trend for foggy thinking is unprecedented in current times.  (Simply look at the 2016 presidential election).  This is clear especially when other people do not like what you stand for if it does not agree with their world view.  They will simply refute without paying attention to what you are saying if it is contrary to their beliefs.  People without a healthy cognitive grip use the narratives that only support their world view.  They tend not to use critical thinking skills to uncover the dust of confusion and propaganda that was designed to hinder their thinking in the first place.

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Ask yourself this question.  How many people do you know on your social media feeds that spend a great deal of time posting about political memes and articles that intend to further a cause?  They don’t post much about their own family, yet they consume much of their time commenting on politically charged articles that beg to engender some kind of sympathy towards their post.  I see these posts all the time and I am distressed by their diminished capacity for critical thinking when reading these pieces.  All political parties take part and no one social group is excluded.

Social control in a society is a very difficult venture.  The more control the state has, the less the people can do other than a revolution.

Image result for democratic party cult memes

My problem with many of my associations is that I look at the argument from a philosophical viewpoint.  I look at the structure of the argument before I usually make a judgement on the meaning and beliefs about the argument.  I use my filters before I render a decision.   Maybe this is why I see so many abuses of language, semantics, logic, and thinking in others who wish to tell me their opinions that it makes me a bit saddened.  I am disheartened  after reading many of these posts from even my own family members.

I must admit the most atrocious posts tend to rely on the ignorance of those believing in them.  If we look at the current political climate, I tend to find that the Democratic party (USA) is the most tenacious and ruthless group of people bent on the domination and oppression of people.  I’m sure one can find many examples of both parties corruptible attributions in their expression, but if I were to focus on one, than the Democratic party and the mainstream media in the United States is by far the worst I have ever seen.

If you look at the social posts of today, and with a corruptible mass media that is telling the lie over and over again, (i.e. climate change, dividing us group by group by calling us racist, ad infinitum), than maybe we are falling for this political paradigm that is misleading us away from the constitution?

There are countless memes used to shut debate.  The assumptions made in many of these memes are fallacious and ridiculous, but on the other hand many simple-minded people tend to fall for them.  I hope not to offend any readers.  I myself am peeved by the outrageous claims that others do not share my belief system, yet we are exposed to the same set of data points and arguments made to us by educators, family and friends or business associates.  Heck, the internet alone if used properly can be a useful tool if you know the pitfalls, along with fully researching the information.

In conclusion I claim that the cult like activities seen in protest rallies around the USA in 2016 are full of propaganda.  The George Soros funded events around the globe were designed to plunder the outcomes of those that globalists oppose to gain credibility in these false scenarios.  If you read the Wikileaks emails, if you “think for yourself” and not allow others to think for you, you have half of the problem solved in the critical analysis of information that is highly politicized in this day and age.  I happen to believe that the democratic party (and much of our government), has sold us out, and does not believe in the constitution.  The democratic party demonstrates it’s policy in communicating like a cult!  Look at the voting record through-out history and see how the democratic party traditionally voted.  If you look it up on the voting record the party voted against civil rights legislation, they are the party that supported slavery, they are now against the 2nd amendment, and against the 4th amendment in the previous Obama administration.  They are against the 13th amendment, among many others that they have spun to impune their opposition and suggest the other party are the ones that are against the people.  I am completely open to agree if there are truths about these claims, yet I find little evidence to support them despite some differences in modern-day political party corruption cases.  Yes it does happen in both parties.  Yes, I try not to be partisan, but I find many cases used as examples of my thesis in this claim that are overwhelming and complicit in the evidence mentioned.

If you would like more examples, just pay attention to your local social media feed, or turn on the television and watch the news.

The historical accounts of propaganda are definitely home grown.  Before Hitler and others, there was Edward Bernays, nephew of Sigmund Freud, can be considered the father of public relations and propaganda. Bernays literally wrote the book on propaganda, public relations, and manipulating public opinion.  Yes, Bernays was born in Vienna, and later moved to America becoming an American publicist.  His notorious book written in 1929 was Propaganda.

Reception and Impact
Despite the relative significance of Propaganda to twentieth century media history and modern public relations, surprisingly little critique of the work exists. Public relations scholar Curt Olsen argues that the public largely accepted Bernays’ “sunny” view of propaganda, an acceptance eroded by fascism in the World War II era.[12] Olsen also argues that Bernays’s skill with language allowed terms such as “education” to subtly replace darker concepts such as “indoctrination.”[13] Finally, Olsen criticizes Bernays for advocating “psychic ease” for the average person to have no burden to answer for his or her own actions in the face of powerful messages.[14] On the other hand, writers such as Marvin Olasky justify Bernays as killing democracy in order to save it.[15] In this way, the presence of an elite, faceless persuasion constituted the only plausible way to prevent authoritarian control.[16] Concepts outlined in Bernays’ Propaganda and other works enabled the development of the first “two-way model” of public relations, using elements of social science in order to better formulate public opinion.[17] Bernays justified public relations as a profession by clearly emphasizing that no individual or group had a monopoly on the true understanding of the world.[18] According to public relations expert Stuart Ewen, “What Lippman set out in grand, overview terms, Bernays is running through in how-to-do-it-terms.”[19] His techniques are now staples for public image creation and political campaigns.[20]

 

resources:

http://www.bibliotecapleyades.net/sociopolitica/esp_sociopol_mindcon27.htm

http://www.cultwatch.com/howcultswork.html

http://www.mindcontrolandcults.com/in-cult

Cult Behaviour: An Analysis

http://rense.com/general80/fon.htm

http://nypost.com/2015/03/08/the-cult-of-hillary-dems-stumble-unquestioningly-into-2016/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_amendments_to_the_United_States_Constitution

http://russp.us/racism.htm

https://skeptic78240.wordpress.com/2013/11/17/quick-history-lesson/

 

 

The Specious Habits of Perception


When you don’t share the same reality of experience with another person, you can become lost in the haze and fog of perception.  Perception is a precursor to the reality you see.  The way you see the world is dependent on your beliefs, and your beliefs are dependent on your perceptions.  So how is it that we ever manage to share a reality that we can together identify and discuss intelligently if our perceptions of the world are completely different?

One of the hardest things for me to deal with as a person is when you are in a disagreement with another person, (especially a family member), and it is almost impossible to come to any sort of cooperative resolution, because the reality of what was experienced is widely different, and thus only non-significant minor affirmations are the only remnants to agree upon.  When there is no shared reality of the events which are in question, then a distortion of our perceptions of what has taken place is convoluted and smeared with prejudice; and this can be frustrating and defeating in attempts to establish any mutual starting points.

I have struggled with such matters very close to my heart due to the estranged relationships I have experienced in my life.  When one loses any presence or continuity in a relationship, when one looses confidence, trust or credibility in another’s eyes, then it is an uphill battle to regain a reconciliation.  Why many relationships that have reached this point are so easily dismissed by those that do not think otherwise due to the disintegration of the emotional connections is self-evident.

The most hurtful is when a distortion of perception takes another away from what was once a shared experience, but with time, changes in age, and opposing influence outside of your control, other perceptions will also shape the beliefs of a person, and thus shape their reality of the world around them.  There are so many messages from the media that try to shape our perceptions about what we should buy, drink, eat, consume, wear, ad infinitum.  This technique is also very common in our schools and what our teachers instruct to our children.  A lesson to learn is that one should never take for granted the shared experience, because it can vanish before your eyes.  Those who do not study history, are susceptible to failing to learn from past accounts and this begets frequent examples of such lessons not learned; namely those who denied the Holocaust, going to war because of the threat of weapons of mass destruction, believing in global warming due to human interaction with the environment, or even nine out of ten dentists prefer a certain toothpaste, etc.

I ask the readers to ponder about such circumstances, what have you experienced?  What was your resolution?  I have spent my share of time thinking on such matters and have felt an immense amount of disheartenment.  The details of these matters are very personal and astonishingly painful.  I do not speak of delusional ego defenses, or patterns of poor judgements that have held me beholden to a servitude of denial.  The pain comes from the understanding that life can be a pernicious series of episodes that may never see their karmic end, and may continue to further echo a perception of the world that does not agree with my core vision.  If judgements are rendered before the trial has even begun allowing for all evidence to be examined, then the likelihood of justice served is next to nonexistent.  “Judge not that ye be not judged” (Mathew 7:1-3 KJV) might be the mantra spoken here.

When Mother Teresa was asked if she needed help with money or fundraising in a town she was visiting to see the opening of a shelter, she replied, no thanks, that there was nothing anyone could do for her since her cause was not about money, or publicity. When asked again if they could somehow do something to help, she replied….“If you really want to do something, wake up at 4am and go out on the streets and find someone living there that believes they are alone, and convince them they are not!

So the question now becomes how to make reparations despite the circumstances.  I believe it has something to do with manifestation.  Manifesting is not about getting things that are not here.  It is about attracting what is already here and is a part of you.  The deck may be stacked against you, but it is precisely on how you play that hand, that will determine the vibe and vibrato of the energy you posit into the world despite the past inequities of the world that you have experienced.  I refer the readers to the works by Dr. Wayne Dyer.

All of us have within us this amazing capacity to manifest and attract anything we want into our lives,” Dr. Dyer states. “In [the book] ‘The Secret,’ they say you get what you want, what is missing… What has come to me… is that you say, ‘I will attract into my life what I am.’… That’s the difference: You get what you are rather than what you want.”

To do this, Dr. Dyer says that you must be in alignment with your source, with a divine source.  This doesn’t mean simply wishing for something and expecting it to appear. “You can’t go around and ask these divine beings — angels, whatever you want to call them — to ‘help me out,'” Dr. Dyer says. “You have to become like they are.”

Instead, Dr. Dyer encourages people to become “angelic” — to give, to serve, to be completely free of judgment and criticism toward all other beings.

But we’re human, and human emotions fall across a wide spectrum. So, what should you do when the negative thoughts inevitably creep up?

“Even if your senses tell you that you’re depressed… you don’t say, ‘I am depressed,'” Dr. Dyer says. “If you say, ‘I am depressed,’ you connect with depression and the universal source — God or whatever you want to call it — will align in such a way to offer you… more depression.”

Dr. Dyer advises that people take a different approach. “By placing into your imagination what you want and assuming the feeling of that wish as already fulfilled, you go through your life feeling that,” he says. “When enough of us do that, we will transform this planet.”

My own personal encounters with inequity, resistance and strife have sent me on a journey that rarely circumvented my obstacles since they were right in front of me, I choose to acknowledge them on their own terms head on.  I found this not to be a very successful tactic and eventually found other resources to deal with these problematic scenarios.  If you become angry, you live with the energy that anger creates.  This may be necessary and helpful at times, but the end result is that you do not ultimately overcome resistance by fighting it in this way in the long run.  A prime example is Mahatma Gandhi’s use of civil disobedience through nonviolence in that his ethical thinking was heavily influenced by a handful of books, which he repeatedly meditated upon.  They included especially Plato‘s Apology and John Ruskin‘s Unto this Last (1862) (both of which he translated into his native Gujarati); William Salter’s Ethical Religion (1889); Henry David Thoreau‘s On the Duty of Civil Disobedience (1849); and Leo Tolstoy‘s The Kingdom of God Is Within You (1894).  Ruskin inspired his decision to live an austere life on a commune, at first on the Phoenix Farm in Natal and then on the Tolstoy Farm just outside Johannesburg, South Africa.

So embrace the positive, deflect the negative.  Like energies attract like energies.  Again quoting Ghandi, “Be the change you wish to see in the world!”  Attract what you have within you by engaging the world in this way.  This will be a very hard thing to do if you are caught up in the negative aspects of ego-related issues, but being mindful of this will help you break free of these traps.

Rabindranath Tagore

“Most people believe the mind to be a mirror, more or less accurately reflecting the world outside them, not realizing on the contrary that the mind is itself the principal element of creation.”
Rabindranath Tagore

William James “Each of us literally chooses, by his way of attending to things, what sort of universe he shall appear to himself to inhabit.”

William James

“The waking have one world in common; sleepers have each a private world of his own.”
Heraclitus

Mother Teresa

“Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.
Life is beauty, admire it.
Life is a dream, realize it.
Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a duty, complete it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, fulfill it.
Life is sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a struggle, accept it.
Life is a tragedy, confront it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is luck, make it.
Life is too precious, do not destroy it.
Life is life, fight for it.”
Mother Teresa

⚖⚖⚖

You can look at the menu, but you just can’t eat
You can feel the cushion, but you can’t have a seat
You can dip your foot in the pool, but you can’t have a swim
You can feel the punishment, but you can’t commit the sin
And you want her, and she wants you
We want everyone
And you want her and she wants you
No one, no one, no one ever is to blame

You can build a mansion, but you just can’t live in it
You’re the fastest runner but you’re not allowed to win
Some break the rules, and live to count the cost
The insecurity is the thing that won’t get lost
And you want her, and she wants you
We want everyone
And you want her, and she wants you
No one, no one, no one ever is to blame

You can see the summit but you can’t reach it
Its the last piece of the puzzle but you just can’t make it fit
Doctor says you’re cured but you still feel the pain
Aspirations in the clouds but your hopes go down the drain
And you want her, and she wants you
We want everyone
And you want her, and she wants you
No one, no one, no one ever is to blame
No one ever is to blame
No one ever is to blame

No One Is To Blame
–Howard Jones —