These last few weeks I’ve pointed out the increasing prevalence of “forwards” based on fiction. At the same time, there seems to be a lack of active skepticism in our society. All of this is being undermined by one incredible force; the momentum of entertainment.
In the beginning, there were gods. Many gods. Gods existed in the wind, the fire, the tree, and the sun. We have gotten smarter and more sophisticated since then, and today we have fewer gods. Some religions claim to only have one, but that’s a topic for another day.
Yet, in all practical terms, our society worships many gods. These are the gods that appear on the altar we call TV. They are beyond beautiful. They are beyond reach. Their words are music to our ears. And we believe everything they say.
In reality, these are entertainers. They are chosen from the ranks of many beautiful people based on their ability to talk, to look attractive, and to mesmerize us with any words it takes to make us feel better about ourselves. If you’re a “bleeding heart liberal” then you’ll want to listen to someone who makes you feel better about your taxes helping families in need, or children getting vaccinations. If you’re a “freedom loving gun-toting conservative” you’re going to want to hear about the evil socialist president and his equally evil sidekick, Hillary, and how the military is being decimated.
The point is that we believe their words, all their words, without digging deeply into what are facts and fiction. It’s very possible one family is being helped by our taxes, but is it the best way? How many families are there, and are we indeed teaching them skills and values necessary for them to become self-sustaining? It’s also likely that the military is being decimated, but is this a surprise? Our two-war military has been on a buildup schedule for many years, and Pentagon planners have known a draw-down is inevitable. Is it a bad thing? Our military spends a lot on very dubious programs. Are they the first to go, or is it a form of corporate welfare meets pork barrel?
If you bow to the TV on a regular basis, and believe the words of your idol, then that is your god. As a serious student of behavior, step out of your body and watch yourself. Is that entertainer the god you want to follow? Or would you rather follow your own conscience?
So take a bow. To yourself.