Editor’s note: this article may seem off topic. It may challenge some of your beliefs. It may even offend you. But, I urge you to read it with an open mind because it’s very relevant to my other writings on persuasion. Plus it’s always good to stretch your mind a bit, right? 😉
Let’s spend a few minutes talking about reality.
What’s really real?
There’s two ways to think about this.
What’s inherently real and what’s real for us.
Question: What’s inherently real in our “universe?”
Not a thing.
In reality, things don’t exist.
Things don’t exist.
Things, by definition, are creations of man. They don’t exist without our definition.
Would a tree be a tree if we couldn’t name it? Would a rock be a rock? Would the universe be the universe?
No. They would just be collections of un-defined energy.
The universe only exists as the universe because we are here to define it.
The only “thing” that is inherently real is “That Which Cannot be Named.” You might call it “universal consciousness” or God. You might be able to point at it, but you can’t define it. This reality exists in and of itself and without our definition. The minute you define it, it becomes a creation in your mind.
A little history:
The earliest humans, cro-magnons, date back about 35,000 to 40,000 BC. Way back then they behaved similar to most pack animals. They acted as a group and their behavior was determined by stimulus-response and by following the dominant leader. There was no individual thought because there was no language to create that thought. They behaved literally like a pack of animals.
Skip forward a few tens of thousands of years to the beginning of language.
Language began primarily with grunts and sounds. Tone inflection and emotion conveyed most of the information these primitive humans would transmit between them.
It was only with the ability to write down their language and thoughts that civilization started accelerating.
The most ancient languages are documented to have started around 3,000 BC beginning with Egyptian Hieroglyphics.
Other languages sprang up around this time as well.
Most of these civilizations weren’t what we think of today as civilizations. They had kings and “peasants” or mostly “slaves.” They weren’t slaves in the sense we think of them today – people forced to do work. Slaves then were mostly un-conscious humanoids still acting on stimulus response. Following the actions of the others around them.
Most of these humans believed that the voices in their heads or the thoughts that propelled their actions came from the gods or the kings that ruled them.
Keep in mind that this wasn’t that long ago. All the stuff you see in movies like in the movie “The Ten Commandments” didn’t happen that way. They didn’t speak english back then or even anything close to it.
They attributed their world and their actions to the gods they created based on what they observed around them.
People only truly became conscious of themselves as individuals (you, me, different people with names, etc), around 1000 to 2000 BC.
Relatively recently in the timeline of human existence.
Humans only really became conscious when they started writing. They could then begin defining, creating and documenting knowledge. And keep in mind, this was language at its most primitive. Language didn’t start becoming more sophisticated until 300-400 BC, when Plato and Aristotle began writing about rhetoric.
Many parts of the old testament were written between 1000 – 2000 BC, around the same time we had just become conscious. This was just a sliver of time more recent than ancient Egypt.
Really makes you think, huh?
Language during this time was still very, very primitive. The book of Amos in the old testament was supposed to have been written in ~900 BC. Compare the writing in the book of Amos to the books of the new testament and you’ll see that the writing is significantly different. Could it be that the old testament was just the written thoughts of people who thought their thoughts were coming from the gods, schizophrenia style?
These books are the written documents that began our civilization. The beginning of humans defining the world around them. And these origins of man were written by still very primitive humans with the very beginning of our language and communication. A lot of these people believed the thoughts in their head were the gods speaking to them.
Think about the story of Abraham and Issac, when Abraham thinks God commands him to kill his son Issac. Who is really talking to Abraham? Is it God? It kinda sounds like schizophrenia to me.
Julian Jaynes posits this very claim in his phenomenal, thought provoking book “The Origins of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind.”
Jaynes claims that primitive man experienced auditory hallucinations when under stress and believed these voices were commands from the gods. The same phenomenon occurs today with schizophrenics, and includes activity in the same part of the brain – Broca’s area in the right hemisphere.
All the current awareness we have of ourselves and our universe started with the first written tomes. They are the basis and foundation for what we have today. And back when they were written most people had very primitive consciousness. Perhaps they were just experiencing auditory hallucinations. Kind of a weird thought and it sorta makes you question what you believe.
Many people still aren’t conscious. People might think they are conscious yet they use little to no critical or conscious thought in their day to day lives.
They are raised in bubbles, exist in echo-chambers, and don’t know how to think critically. They hold certain beliefs and seek out information that confirms their biases so they stay comfy in their ignorance.
It’s only with language that we create our reality. And we all create it for ourselves based on the lineage of our family and what they believe, the traditions that have been passed down to us, and our state run educational system.
The only thing you might consider “objective” reality is truth as we see it based on facts in the framework of the reality we’ve created. And, it’s different for everybody.
And even this reality isn’t really real.
- We know that facts are different to everyone.
- Memory biases cause all of us to misremember and misinterpret what we’ve seen.
- Facts and interpretations from scientific studies aren’t always reliable.
So, you can ultimately say that there is no real objective reality as we know or define it. There is only subjective reality which differs from person to person. We all have a different reality based on how we were raised, what we were raised believing, who we listen to, etc.
Therefore you can say that reality is based on thoughts and words. Thoughts and words can be used to influence reality, which means reality is malleable for everybody. Nothing is set in stone. You can change peoples’ minds for them. People always look to authority for the answers. My next article will be about the history of education and how people are trained to listen to authority.
For now just know that YOU are the authority. And since you now know that you have the ability to change peoples’ minds, you’ll have an easier time doing it to help push people towards what you know to be true regarding their health and chiropractic.