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Michael J. Emery Radio Interview on Dresser After Dark
Last night, I had a great conversation with Michael Ray Dresser on his radio show Dresser After Dark. I was fortunate to have a platform to discuss some of the major challenges humanity faces today from my perspective. In more ways than not, we (people worldwide) are becoming an entertainment-seeking population. As a whole, the majority of people seem to be more interested in being entertained than pursuing a life of significance and meaning. The ratings alone on "Reality TV" shows demonstrates that the viewers' personal lives are less interesting that the perceived "reality" lives on a TV show that has been cut and spliced and pushed out into a nice little package perfectly timed for commercials.
And, that's reality? Huh?
Media Manipulation: Fractured Self and Confused Consumer
During the radio interview, I used terminology like the "fractured self" and the "confused consumer". I believe that these represent the persona and identity crisis that has been created by mainly two groups: follower-seeking religions and customer-seeking corporations. For big religion and business their ideal "customer" is someone who is cutoff from his/her personal values, is more interested in what others think than developing his/her own opinions (external locus of control), and completely dependent upon an outside source to follow.
I'm going to go pretty extreme here, but stay with me - and question everything you read! Let's go back in time a few centuries - right to the discovery of the Americas by the Europeans. In just a few decades, a large portion of Central and South America were practically conquered by a small handful of soldiers who believed they had a god-ordained right to convert the native populations, and oh... perhaps more importantly, ship the gold and spoils of victory back to Mother Europe. Back then, the ruling class of Europeans largely operated with a heavy, theocratic hand (right of God). Most Europeans didn't object to the eradication of the natives because after all - the ruling class sanctioned it all... And of course, God, through the voice of the church, endorsed the conversion of the non-believers - even at the cost of their lives... But that was a small, insignificant cost in the name of progress.
Today, the names (well, some if you're oblivious to generational ties, and have not tracked the ancestry of old money and power) and the faces have changed. Even the church is not directly involved. If you haven't noticed, there's a new religion in town...
Media Manipulation Pushes the Triggers So That You Buy More
Consume, consume, consume. Buy, buy, buy! It feels better than confession, and your friends will compliment your ability to spend money! Americans want it quick, convenient, and easy. So we have instant food, microwaves, processed this, refined that, designer this, and limited edition that... And, because it comes easily, it goes easily. Bringing along with it a host of problems that lesser developed countries (this is still the PC term, right?) are just dying to have:
Cancer - environmental causes and lifestyle decisions
Diabetes - lifestyle and nutrition (?) choices
Fear / Scarcity - the largest motivating factor in buying decisions. We consume not because of necessity but because of want to fill an emotional void.
War - As George Orwell wrote, "...the war is not meant to be won." By and large, governments around the world are out of work if the common people get along.
Pharmaceutical Companies - Their livelihood depends upon you being perpetually ill and experiencing painful emotions.
I could go on and on, but I hope you are getting my point. By and large, this is happening all around the "entertained individual". Real life encompasses the full range of emotions because life is a process; a spectrum of time beginning with conception and ending with death. We are all going to die eventually, and I personally believe this reality is the reason why so many people are trying to sedate themselves. Its easier to [try to] avoid it, than to face death and boldly say, "Do your worst! And, I will do mine."
Self Awareness Overrides Media Manipulation
Approximately 25 centuries ago, the Buddha is believed to have gained enlightenment simply by paying attention to the sensations in his body. Fear, guilt, shame, lust, anger, pride, hurt, happiness, love, joy, excitement, pleasure, passion, bliss... They are all just sensations. We assign meanings to each sensation and with the meaning comes attachment or aversion.
When speaking with Michael Dresser, I said that my work involving hypnosis is really de-hypnosis. And, everything is hypnosis! If you don't know much about the subject, then the best way to explain it is any time you remember or imagine something in your mind and have an internal feeling that is good or bad - this is hypnosis.
People are their own best and most reliable hypnotists or hypnotherapists. Every waking moment, each individual has voices in his or her head, pictures in his or her mind, and sensations in his or her body. These experiences either move us toward what we want, or away from what we don't want. And, the predictable nature of human beings is that the aversion to what we don't want is often much strong than the attraction to what we do want. This is the sales psychology used in the sale of most consumer goods today.
"You don't want to miss out..."
"What will your friends say if your breath stinks...?"
"You won't be loved if you don't have..."
Frankly, I'm pretty damn sick and tired of it. The silver-lining in this economic downturn is there might be a chance for us Americans to spend more time reflecting upon what is meaningful in life and going out to make it happen. Sure, there might be some fear, uncertainty, pain, shame, guilt, and old beliefs that insist you can't... But seriously, no one really cares because they are too caught up in their own drama, and incessant pursuit of emotional avoidance.
When you grab your life by the horns and your bodily sensations by the scruff of the neck and say, "Listen Mr./Mrs./Ms. Body-of-Mine, I've had it with you pushing me around telling me your constantly unsatisfied, unhappy, and bored. I'm in control now and together we are going to do significant and meaningful things with the rest of our life. Who knows how much more time we have, so we're starting right now. Dammit!"
And, go out there and discover the resources you need to empower yourself. They are certainly available.
Interview Begins at Minute Mark 2:30:00