Sunday, April 16, 2006

Propaganda, Pride, and Direct Experience

“You know what propaganda is, don't you? It is to propagate, to sow or constantly repeat an idea. That is how the propa- gandist, the politician, the religious leader imprints on your mind what he wants you to believe. There is a listening involved in this process also. Such people constantly repeat what you should do, what books you should read, whom you should follow, which ideas are right and which are wrong; and this constant repetition leaves a mark on your mind. Even if you do not consciously listen, it is making an imprint, and that is the purpose of propaganda. But you see, propaganda is merely vested interest, it does not bring that truth which you immediately understand when you are really listening, when you are paying attention without effort.

Have you ever considered what it is to be successful as a writer, as a poet, as a painter, as a business man or politician? To feel that you have inwardly achieved a certain control over yourself which others do not have, or that you have succeeded where others have failed; to feel that you are better than somebody else, that you have become a successful man, that you are respected, looked up to by others as an example - what does all this indicate? Naturally, when you have this feeling, there is pride: I have done something, I am important. The feeling of `I' is in its very nature a sense of pride. So pride grows with success; one is proud of being very important compared with other people. This comparison of yourself with another exists also in your pursuit of the example, the ideal, and it gives you hope, it gives you strength, purpose, drive, which only strengthens the `I', the pleasurable feeling that you are much more important than anybody else; and that feeling, that sense of pleasure, is the beginning of pride.

Pride brings a great deal of vanity, an egotistic inflation. You can observe this in the older people and in yourself. When you pass an examination and feel that you are a little cleverer than another, a sense of pleasure comes in. It is the same when you outdo somebody in an argument, or when you feel that you are physically much stronger or more beautiful - immediately there is a sense of your own importance. This feeling of the importance of the `me' inevitably brings conflict, struggle, pain, because you have to maintain your importance all the time.

It is obviously essential to have knowledge at certain levels, but it is even more important to see how knowledge is used egotistically, for selfish purposes. Observe yourself and you will see how experience is employed by the mind as a means of self-expansion, as a means of power and prestige. Watch the grown-ups and you will see how they hanker after position and cling to their success. They want to build a nest of safety for themselves, they want power, prestige, authority - and most of us, in various ways, are after the same thing. We don't want to be ourselves, whatever we are; we want to be somebodies. There is a difference, surely between being and wanting to be. The desire to be or to become is continued and strengthened through knowledge, which is used for self-aggrandizement.

It is important for all of us, as we are maturing, to go into these problems and understand them, so that we do not respect a person merely because he has a title or a high position, or is supposed to have a great deal of knowledge. Actually, we know very little. We may have read many books, but very few have direct experience of anything. It is the direct experiencing of reality, of God, that is of vital importance; and for that, there must be love. “

Life Ahead


At April 17, 2006 8:05 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

The major cause of inflation is fear -- which unfortunately, is the major product of the mainstream press and the demagogues they can rely on to provide an endless stream for them.

At April 19, 2006 11:32 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

Most people’s defense against the incursions of propaganda and other people’s delusions of grandeur is to avoid the popular media altogether -- which has always been a very effective solution. Because of marketing, lobbying and political campaigning, one doesn’t seem to miss much avoiding such influences. Increasingly, those older forms that are still around today -- like the newspapers and network television, give way to the new consciousness of unmanipulated information -- since that is now an option.

Of course, there are many who think the new technologies simply provide more opportunities to give the little guy the chance to do what the big guys have been doing for years -- which is doing the thinking for everybody else and then forcing them to their will, as the supreme attainment in society. So even while the new revolution is going on, such people are merely retrenching themselves in the old ways -- and so their one hope is the revitalization and resurrection of the past and the old, so they can be on top again in the world of the past, that they will live in until the day they die.

All their lives and activities are these self-enclosing and self-isolating activities to prove that they are more deserving than anyone else -- of all the spoils of society, and the rest would willingly forfeit their share to support these self-appointed few to the lives of privilege and luxury they have become accustomed to thinking is their due. Usually, it is because they assert their claims to intellectual and moral superiority louder than everybody else does. Foremost in that parade, are the media “superstars”, the educational administrators and the university professors -- all certifiably more qualified and entitled to the good life.

It is they alone, who are qualified to determine what is “politically, socially and morally correct” because they “certifiably” know better what is best for everyone else. They are invariably lifetime members of the Demagogic Party.

At April 19, 2006 7:42 PM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

The Dems need to give up on controlling the cost of gasoline and focus their efforts on controlling the cost of governement -- and the out-of-control expansion of jobs for doing the same amount of work.

At April 19, 2006 7:47 PM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

Is there no end to the diversionary tactics to keep them from entertaining any meaningful discussion on returning the tax surplus to the citizens?

Or do they all plan to run for the U.S. Senate seat and do nothing for the rest of their lives -- as a public service?

At April 19, 2006 7:58 PM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

Or is this what they've been working on all session?

Ethics commission to hold hearing against Sen. Kanno
Pacific Business News (Honolulu) - 5:05 PM HAST Wednesday

The Hawaii State Ethics Commission filed a public notice on Wednesday for a contested-case hearing on charges against Sen. Brian Kanno, D-Kapolei-Waikele, regarding his efforts to try to regain employment for Leon Rouse at Norwegian Cruise Line or restitution for his termination.

The hearing is on June 7.

Kanno, as chairman of the Senate Labor Committee, tried to get Rouse, an employee who was fired for sexual harassment, rehired at the cruise line. When that failed, he wrote a letter on his official letter head asking NCL to pay for Rouse's traveling expenses and restitution. The letter was cosigned by several Senate democrats.

During the 2005 session, he also sought passage of resolutions in both chambers of the Legislature that would ask Norwegian Cruise Line to explain its workplace policy when it fires employees on harassment charges. As a punitive measure, the resolution also asked the Hawaii Department of Taxation to look into whether the cruise line would have to pay taxes because it operates as a "floating hotel."

That was not all. Rouse was employed by Rep. Rida Cabanilla as an office manager based on Kanno's recommendation.

Five Republicans in the Legislature called the Hawaii State Ethics Commission to investigate the issue. As a result, the commission filed its hearing notice.

Typically, the commission settles most cases before heading to a hearing but in this case that wasn't possible, said Dan Mollway, the commission's executive director and general counsel.

The last hearing the agency held was in 1995. The hearing is similar to a court trial with the five ethics commissioners sitting on the bench. During the trial, which can drag on a for a few months, the bench will hear witnesses from both sides.

At April 20, 2006 8:41 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

How much are the newspapers charging to get a letter to the editor published these days?

It seems like the only letters and commentaries being published anymore are by the lobbyists for the various self-serving interest groups. Maybe that explains why they no longer have any credibility.

At April 20, 2006 9:41 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

"Inflation, you know. Hawaii has the highest cost of living; we have to eat you know."

That's the liquor inspectors' excuse, patting their ample bellies.


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