1984 1984 discussion


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The Government is not the only threat. There's religion too.

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message 1: by Aditya (last edited May 23, 2012 01:40PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Aditya Mandalemula Ever since I read Orwell's 1984, the one thing I have in mind is, most people are missing the point. Concentrating on one target and ignoring the other big threat - Concept of God, Religion. Religion has the full capacity to bring about Orwell's nightmare into reality. Probably it already has. All double talk. Discouragement of free thinking. Encouragement of blind belief. And religion promoters everywhere in the world constantly brainwashing us about how big losers we are going to be if we stop believing in God. Threatening. Ridiculing. In rare circumstances - Condemning, Outcasting. And in the case of revolutionaries - First trying to make them feel guilty, and then eventual murder. The problem can be solved if the 85% of the people (general citizens) start looking for the real truth and revolt against the biggest delusion of the human race (even bigger than Geocentrism), but as Orwell rightfully predicted, general people just won't care to revolt, in fact, they would be terrified to. And if somebody revolts, he'll be forced to believe just how wrong he is and feel enormously guilty about his revolt and then some more. Well, Orwell's 1984 is a true work of Genius.

(Please state your opinions below, and before you do, I request you to read four to five of the comments I've written below so that you avoid misunderstanding my intent. I'm not against religion. I'm against 'not questioning important things' and how bad it can turn out to be if we stop asking questions.)


message 2: by [deleted user] (new)

Oh boy. Goodreads is a terrible place to discuss religion.


Denise DeSio I totally agree!

Denise DeSio - Author of Rose's Will (where 2 of the characters are non-believers).


Horrorshow Banks are a bigger threat than the Church. "Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws."


message 5: by John (last edited May 23, 2012 12:04PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

John macgregor wrote: "Oh boy. Goodreads is a terrible place to discuss religion."

I would say that doesn't apply to Aditya, as his description fits the atmosphere of a politically correct university far better than religion.

There is a great deal of anger and allegations to his comment, but no facts and one statistic ("85% of the people", what if you could only convince 84%, would that not be good enough?) which appears to have been made up completely.

I would say that either Aditya is so angry he's become incoherent, or more likely, he's a troll looking to start a fight.


C.C. macgregor wrote: "Oh boy. Goodreads is a terrible place to discuss religion."

I disagree in theory. This should be a great place to discuss religion. However, in practice no one ever discusses religion; everyone just tells anyone who disagrees with them how wrong and stupid they are. So in the end, you are right.


Aditya Mandalemula No, no, no. I'm not a troll. I'm not looking to start a fight. Yes, I'm angry, and frustrated by how people, over the centuries, have descended religion into doubletalk and doublethink and self delusion.


message 8: by [deleted user] (new)

It seems unfair to reduce religion to one thing when it is many things to many people, and does not exist outside of time. It is disingenuous to claim that religion fosters blind belief when even looking to Catholicism, we see a wealth of self-analysis and introspection.

If you say you're not looking to start a fight, you can't say that religion brainwashes people. That's provocative and frankly ignorant.


John Aditya wrote: "No, no, no. I'm not a troll. I'm not looking to start a fight. Yes, I'm angry, and frustrated by how people, over the centuries, have descended religion into doubletalk and doublethink and self del..."

Sorry, but if you are looking to discuss something, you'll need to be a bit more specific. First off, speaking about "religion" is pretty much meaningless. Which religion? Every major religion I know of makes particular claims to truth which are incompatible with each other.

Once you've establish who your beef is with, we can start to try and determine what your beef is. You mention doubletalk and doublethink. Could you expand on that?


message 10: by Aditya (last edited May 23, 2012 12:32PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Aditya Mandalemula Ok, I'm making myself clear. I'm not suggesting to abandon 'Religion'. Just like Orwell didn't suggest to abandon government. Orwell was asking us to keep an eye on the government. Don't let Government take a complete control over you. Well, may be in my frustrated, angry post, I didn't make myself clear, but just like Orwell said about Government, I was only trying to suggest that we shouldn't accept everything that belongs to religion as unquestionably valid. Don't lose common sense. Unfortunately many people are becoming too emotional and too sensitive when it comes to 'questioning' religion. That is definitely not good. Keep religion pure. Even if that means you have to cleanse and clarify the very roots of religion.


message 11: by John (new) - rated it 4 stars

John Aditya wrote: "Ok, I'm making myself clear. I'm not suggesting to abandon 'Religion'. Just like Orwell didn't suggest to abandon government. Orwell was asking us to keep an eye on the government. Don't let Govern..."

Got it. You're a troll. I asked two specific questions, which you did not answer. In fact, I wonder if there's a way to run a Turing test on all your posts...


Aditya Mandalemula The question 'Which religion' definitely does not matter. Whatever religion it is - Keep an eye on it. Don't do whatever it says. I've seen many people following their religion rules blindly (again, doesn't matter which religion). Well, the extremity is the terrorists believing that they'll be received by the God dearly if they committed suicide in the act of killing many people (I'm not against Islam in particular. I'm specifying again, doesn't matter which religion). We can see pastors taking cruel advantage over the devotees. We can see Brahmins taking advantage over other caste members (it's in Hindu religion, but still, again I say, doesn't matter which religion).

Whatever the religion you follow - Keep a check on it. Ask questions. Don't back off when they say - "This is God's work and you shouldn't be poking your nose here." Ask questions and try to get clear answers about what you are asked to do. Don't take the religious rules as granted. Check how correct they are. Doesn't matter which religion. Whatever religion it is, check how practically correct the things are. Don't back off.

Ask questions. And if anybody says, "This is religion, so you should better give some respect." Answer back, "I respect it, and that is I want to know more about it. Please tell me what that is." If you think there are necessary changes to make, then suggest them. But before you do, please check and recheck if you are correct. Use your imagination. Well, there's a big list.

The point I want to make is - Religion (whatever the religion it is) has become so spoiled, it is seriously encouraging us to not question. Most of the people who follow religion are almost paranoidly afraid of deep questions as if they are subconsciously sure that they are guarding a lie.

Even if they are so, don't back off. Ask questions. Probe deep. If you are interested to know about something in religion, even if people say, "No, don't you ask such questions." Don't you back off. Ask questions.

This is exactly what I wanted to say through that post. But, of course, yes, I didn't make myself clear there. All I said there is that religion has turned into a thing that is very similar to the government we see ruling in Orwell's '1984'.


message 13: by [deleted user] (new)

Let me finish off this thread for you so that we don't have to discuss this asinine topic any longer....

I'll do this by summing up your (and Orwell's argument) in a pithy aphoristic way:

Keep a healthy distrust of authority.


Okay? Now we can end this thread.


Aditya Mandalemula @ macgregor - Ha! You got me.

And John, I'm not a troll. Just because this is considered a taboo topic, I'm not gonna be indifferent to it. I gave you good enough reply.

And yes, as long as people maintain a healthy respect and distrust towards authority, I'm fine by it. And when I said authority, that includes religion.


message 15: by John (new) - rated it 4 stars

John Ah, but Aditya, I disagree (I know, you're shocked). It absolutely matters which religion you are talking about, because there is only one question about a religion which really matters. Is it true? And as I pointed out before, they can't all be because they make mutually exclusive claims.

As to the examples you site, terrorists, pastors taking advantage of their flocks and the caste system, I happen to agree. All are wrong, that is none of those things are compatible with the truth.

It is interesting to note that of those examples, the caste system and martyrdom are aspects of Hinduism and Islam (granting that the belief in access to heaven through martyrdom is disputed by some Muslims), while the hypothetical pastor you mention is violating the tenants of Christianity.


message 16: by Ana (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ana Moreira I totally agree with you. Religion it's the real disease of all societies around the world. And I speak of ALL religions without exception...
With regard to the book, I think Orwell's 1984 is an metaphor for all that restricts the freedom of human being in all ways. It can be religion, government and all institutions of power.


Aditya Mandalemula Here's a funny thing (that is also rather threatening). I made comments on Great Gatsby (I have mentioned the reasons), on Bridges of Madison county, and many other Novels. But once I talk something against religion, people start calling me troll. And John even suggests that all my posts should be duly Turing tested. He waited for just one reply from me before he came to that conclusion.

Oh, my God (whoever he is, doesn't matter)! Religion is one thing with a huge potential to influence human beings to either good or bad, and we need to keep it pure. And to talk about it is, almost seems like a crime. "You're a troll, you'll be banished if you talk about it." Clearly suggests 1984 kind of a rule to me. I mean nothing against Religion in general, but everything against how it turned out to be in particular.

As C.C mentioned, because of many cheap fights on the this topic, an argument about this topic has acquired a very bad name. Such a bad name, many people have become paranoid and too stubborn to any change suggested through a discussion on this topic. Definitely unhealthy. I'm not saying Religion is bad. I'm only saying it's definitely spoiled. And I fear it's really as spoiled as the government in '1984'. George Orwell indicated through that Novel that we should stop such a government from coming into rule because once it came into existence, it's almost impossible to turn it back. I'm afraid, with all this disagreement to discussion on this topic, religion has already developed into such a thing.


Kristen Hill Why are people always attacking religion? As long as a government is not forcing you to practice any particular religion or keeping you from practicing your religion what is the big deal. It is very important to some people to have belief in God as long as they are not hurting anyone else why should you care? Also just because a religious person does something wrong such as pastors scamming people or being involved in abuse scandals that doesn't mean that all religious people are wrong. The same way that if a non-religious person does something wrong that does not mean that all non-religious people are wrong.


Aditya Mandalemula @ John - I'm sure you are beyond reform. I say one thing, you say another thing. You are in a mood to disagree. :)


message 20: by John (new) - rated it 4 stars

John Aditya,

I suggested you were a troll and that you take a Turing test because your posts are heavy on invective and light on specific points.

Further, when I have replied to your messages with specific questions, which you haven't actually answered. You choose instead to simply restate your initial inflammatory comments.


message 21: by Aditya (last edited May 23, 2012 01:31PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Aditya Mandalemula @ Kristen - I'm not attacking religion Kristen. I'm mainly attacking the extreme authority religion is trying to show on many people. Orwell, didn't attack government either. He was attacking the extreme authority government might exercise over people. I'm trying to encourage people to fearlessly 'Question' and 'Probe Deep'.


Aditya Mandalemula Horrorshow wrote: "Banks are a bigger threat than the Church. "Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws.""

Good point Horrorshow. Never thought about that. Will try to learn more on that subject. Or, can you please tell a little more about why you say banks are a big threat?


Aditya Mandalemula C.C. wrote: "However, in practice no one ever discusses religion; everyone just tells anyone who disagrees with them how wrong and stupid they are. So in the end, you are right"

Very well put C.C.


message 24: by Mia (new) - rated it 3 stars

Mia But who "keeps an eye" on religion? Who has that authority, and how do you prevent them from abusing that authority? And what do you consider a "religion"? Some people consider Buddhism a religion, others consider it simply a philosophy. So is philosophy also supervised by some "authority" then? Some people consider yoga spiritual, others consider it just an exercise. Should an authority "keep an eye" on yoga?

Where is the line drawn, and who (or what organization) creates this line?

Ironically, your suggestion is just another form of "Big Brother" lol

I was not raised in a religion, but I feel as long as a religion doesn't violate human rights, a person is FREE to worship whomever or whatever they want.

1984 was such a deep book. One of my favorites.


Moriah Swanson Aditya wrote: "Ever since I read Orwell's 1984, the one thing I have in mind is, most people are missing the point. Concentrating on one target and ignoring the other big threat - Concept of God, Religion. Religi..."
It seems to me that someone feels guilty already.


Aditya Mandalemula @ Moriah - Not guilty. Fear. It's downright fear. Fear about being suppressed by authority. I've already experienced how many passionate theists like to insult and demoralize and suppress the rational inquirer. It's fear. But of course, I won't let that fear completely stop me. I just tread carefully. ;)


message 27: by Redd (new) - rated it 4 stars

Redd Kaiman You know that part in the book where they said kings and democracies failed but the Catholic Church kept on?

Yeah...Orwell knew.

How To Get Fans In Other Countries: http://reddkaiman.blogspot.com/2012/0...


message 28: by Aditya (last edited May 24, 2012 12:35AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Aditya Mandalemula @ Mia - You understood that I suggested to keep an eye on religion just like we should keep an eye on government. But you most probably read the sentence this way, 'an authority should keep an eye on religion'. I didn't mention anything about any authority or a system to keep an eye on religion. It's general people. It's everybody, that should keep an eye on things that strongly influence us. Not some system or something.

Whether Buddhism is considered a religion or philosophy, doesn't matter. Keep an eye on it too. Learn why you should do what you should do. Plato and Socrates kept many eyes on Philosophy. ;) They really did.

And yes, keep an eye on Yoga too. Just saying - Keeping an eye means inquiring and understanding the things about a particular thing, and if you find something wrong in it, make a healthy discussion with an influential person (can be the president of America or a Yoga guru or a fellow Yoga member) and change the bad thing. If you are proven wrong in your judgement, change your own judgement and accept the right thing.

Keep an eye on everything. If somebody says this is great authority with thousands of years of history and you shouldn't question such a thing, do not back off. Whether it's God or Philosophy or something you consider spiritual or sports or Art, keep an eye on it. Trying to understand is good. Trying to cooperate is very good. But not when you are doubtful you are cooperating for destruction. Well, at the same time, do not act too quick. Sit back and think, because you might be wrong. Ask questions. Make a healthy discussion.

Because if you do not, we can very well continue to see the '1984' kind of authority over us. I very much believe that particularly religion has developed such an authority over us. Which is why I made this note mainly regarding religion.


Aditya Mandalemula Redd wrote: "You know that part in the book where they said kings and democracies failed but the Catholic Church kept on?

Yeah...Orwell knew.

How To Get Fans In Other Countries: http://reddkaiman.blogspot.c..."


Orwell is a genius Redd. He's a very good man and a genius. The book he wrote, is one of the most important books ever to come out in literature.


message 30: by [deleted user] (last edited May 24, 2012 05:27AM) (new)

Aditya wrote: "@ Mia - You understood that I suggested to keep an eye on religion just like we should keep an eye on government. But you most probably read the sentence this way, 'an authority should keep an eye ..."

So again, your argument sums up into "question everything; trust nothing". I fail to see how this is world-shaking. There are many skeptics groups out there, Aditya, and many famous skeptics. There are many who share your worldview, but have received education in formal logic and critical thinking.

Without any malice, I strongly recommend you take some formal logic courses or any introduction to critical thinking. I think you'll find it quite enjoyable.

http://skeptico.blogs.com/skeptico/ is a very well-written and entertaining skeptic blog you might find illuminating.


message 31: by Matt (last edited May 24, 2012 06:26AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Matt Aditya, don't listen to one or two of these people trolling you. Everyone SHOULD keep an eye on the powerful and influential.


message 32: by Mia (new) - rated it 3 stars

Mia I don't know, Aditya. It still sounds like your system is pretty close to "Big Brother is watching." The government in the US has a system of checks and balances, and there are international organizations that do keep and eye on human rights violations and political corruption. In the US people can also notify the FBI for suspicions of certain crimes (checkout Eliot Spitzer "client 9"). They are notifying a governmental organization, not going vigilante. And the police and FBI do keep a surveillance on religious organizations that are deemed suspicious (checkout out the current controversy with the NYPD). So there are several kinds of "authorities" over the government (Supreme court, FBI, recall elections, the Geneva Conventions, etc...).

If the people in general, like you say, are the ones to "watch" religion, or their perception of religion, who do they report to? If someone witnesses something they don't like do they become a vigilante and handle it themselves? Or do they report to someone with authority, or an organization that was formed to handle these perceived infractions?

It still sounds like your asking people not only to play vigilante, but also "Big Brother" and then this would lead to the question "Who watches the Watchmen?" You might want to look up McCarthyism too.

Can you imagine someone getting busted for practicing yoga? lol Or if someone was put on a watch list for ordering a vegetarian meal (I mean, they could've ordered it meat-free for religious reasons).

1984 was such a powerful read.

Interesting discussion here.


Aditya Mandalemula @ Matthew - Thank you Matthew. Your comment gave me some confidence. Really I didn't want to necessarily show religion as a bad thing. I only wanted to say that it can become a bad thing if we consider it as an almighty and nod to everything people say under it's name. Your comment gave me some respite. :)


Moriah Swanson Matthew wrote: "Aditya, don't listen to one or two of these people trolling you. Everyone SHOULD keep an eye on the powerful and influential."

I agree with Matthew, always be wary of anyone who has the power.


Kristen Hill Aditya I guess that I understand what you are saying now that you have explained it more. People should be careful what they do in the name of religion and not use religion for their own selfish ends or to gain power over others. You should believe in God or whatever you believe in to help your self and to help others and not to harm. Is that more of what you are saying? A healthy skepticism of people in authority even religious authority? Because I know that religion can be misused by people who are not careful or who are power hungry.


Aditya Mandalemula @ Kristen - You got me exactly right Kristen. :) If you don't think I'm exaggerating, those words you wrote sounded like a song to me. :) Exactly what I'm trying to say.


message 37: by Matthew (last edited May 24, 2012 01:51PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Matthew Williams Really it's any sense of ideological purity that's a threat. The danger in 1984 wasn't so much government, it was the fact that it was based on the idea of "socialist perfection" as preached by men like Stalin. Within the Nazi camp, it was the idea of National loyalty and racial purity. In the kind of society we see emerging with neo-cons and other far right parties, its what can be termed "corporate feudalism". It's all bad!


message 38: by [deleted user] (new)

Matthew wrote: "Really it's any sense of ideological purity that's a threat. The danger in 1984 wasn't so much government, it was the fact that it was based on the idea of "socialist perfection" as preached by men..."

I think your rhetorical mistake here is to think that some things aren't mediated by one's ideology. Socialism on one end of the spectrum versus fascism on the other, it doesn't matter. Everything we do and think is mediated by ideology or state apparatus.

Corporate feudalism is one colloquial term for it, but most call it either neoliberalism or late capitalism.


message 39: by Matthew (last edited May 30, 2012 11:01AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Matthew Williams macgregor wrote: "Matthew wrote: "Really it's any sense of ideological purity that's a threat. The danger in 1984 wasn't so much government, it was the fact that it was based on the idea of "socialist perfection" as..."

I think that's a gross generalization. If everything we did was mediated, there would be no basis for change or challenge. And while some people are entirely mediated by their ideology, there are many people who simply try to find their way and aren't ideologically consistent at all.

In fact, I'd say this applies to most people. It's just people who subscribe to the extremes whose lives are consistent with one ideology or another. And it's part of what makes them dangerous and/or insufferable.


Dan's Obsessions John wrote: "Ah, but Aditya, I disagree (I know, you're shocked). It absolutely matters which religion you are talking about, because there is only one question about a religion which really matters. Is it tr..."
Religions are not "borne" into this world as seperate doctrines, they have universal ideas ( that would allow their "followers of the cloth" to co-exist) and most certainly co-operate in matters of faith. In the end making their doctrine more clear, accessible and
universal in it's meaning.
Still there is a large gap to overcome. Each church-"religion sect" maintains strict belief and obedience of their flock though elaborate rituals, which strengthen solidarity and scare off potential mischief. However ( strictly speaking in terms of Western type of Religion) we see a --- of openeness when they are trying to embrace-assimilate new ethnic groups (with diverse cultures/ religious beliefs) in the end they succeed by establishing a new dogma completely different to what pre-existed there before. [ that is the majority of the case on Catholic priest preaching the word of their faith in those savages] not unlike what happened in ctrl Europe and later the Northern parts up to the whole region of former Russia by byzantinum, but I surely don't want to get into such details.
What I would like to let U know, is that ones Faith, belief is not a sacred pillar of wisdom by which one should carry all the way to the four ends of this earth unshaken by the truth of his convictions.
But let's try to see it more clearly, from another point of view. Most people have been taught to believe in a higher entity, others choose to disregard this belief in later -points of their lives. Still according to psychological experiments done in close premises all of their attendants chose to "get a grip" of a faith-affirming symbol/icon ( many times I recall it as a cross) on life threatening situations. By that paradigm ( that I could show U links if U like) we can see how Religious people have an affinity with subjugates on dictatorship countries ( There the symbol is most usually a flag or a new invented one, like the swastika for instance, or the hand bearing arrows in Franko's Spain and so on)
Where I leave in they used a Phoenix borne of its asses. Come to think of it they always try to "dig deep into" the past for subconsciously induced symbols that would undeniably get a grip on ppl.
Another parallel is the mass-conjugations ( Litanies= lithurgies called some times-- Masses in LAtin to denote the mass attendance or importance of such an event ) I won't go to lengths trying to impress U with similar "masse's" done in other countries by dictatorships.

Hey one last thing to let U consider the similarities of both as opressive institutions...
You do know of the story of one young painter forgotten in between years of his country's economic recession and defeat by the allied forces ( I am sure U can d-load Max the movie and take a peek) Well I am talking of course for no other but Hitler, a revolutionary man by some , a detestable figure by others. Now U may want to ask what does he have anything to do with our talk...say in Catholic teaching. Let me shift yr mind to the ways ranks are organised there, SS troops of the elite, were organised in the same way as priests on the inner circle were {That's in accordance to a view my friend has I cannot ade_uately support this good enough here.. for the moment} But consider this Rings were given to all the graduates along with their insignia and their little decorative scythes... All with the same symbol upon them. ( I can draw this talk at lengths at this point but nvmind) The runic symbol of power ( from a Runic carving) along with the totenkomfh -the infamous death's head- resurfacing again after being used by Elisabethian Rogue-navy to bring fear on the Hispanic trading fleet.
And to close my argument what do all of those beliefs/ structured authoritative penal states have in common. An affirmation of their own --uni_ue identity-- ( that particular one is for good laughs) in Church it's the belief of Guidance by the devine to spread the world of God around the world. But somehow when they get a look around the rest of the world, they are terrified to see that this uni_ue view of the world is not shared by others. So they go on to spread this "truth" by any means at their disposable. ( At this point I'll consider U to closely - match the insignia many armies have in their banners or carved.painted in the sides of buildings/vehicles) But I am over-stretching again. Let me end this argument with one last paradigm, an occurence that happened in the occupation of my country at the last few days before liberation. (actually I have the depiction of that scene carved in my mind deeply since the format closely resembled a comic, one page included a painting the other a short text with dialogue)
A nazi officer approaches a co-patriot down in the cells he is being held up for interogation, slaps him once without a word, then a moment of silence.
( at an earlier time his soldiers informed him of the continuing bombarment of their vessel ships in the port of Pireaus by the allies of course)
Officer: - "How could U continue to bomb us, we are of the same faith, abide to the one heavenly father."
The victim lays motionless, in denial ,unable to grasp the significance of his words, from my point of view the same stands true for that officer.


message 41: by John (new) - rated it 4 stars

John Dan,

Sorry, but Matthew beat you to the Godwin's Law entry by almost a week...


Dan's Obsessions Kristen wrote: "Why are people always attacking religion? As long as a government is not forcing you to practice any particular religion or keeping you from practicing your religion what is the big deal. It is ver..."
Kristen try to read my latest thread I think it will clear some clouds on yr minds perception on how religion+state works as a cohesive force. And why they are allowed to co-exist in harmony not as competitive Forces.
Of course I was trying to put some log in the fire to elevate this "debate" cause when such forces are at work are not to be tread upon lightly.


Dan's Obsessions Dan's wrote: "John wrote: "Ah, but Aditya, I disagree (I know, you're shocked). It absolutely matters which religion you are talking about, because there is only one question about a religion which really matte..."
Yah, perhaps U are right there. I am a freshman here. I didn't see the start of this thread. Thnks for bringing it to my attenion I'll check it out later on.
but what I would really like to know is..all ppl here ( not supporting Religion) find these comments or arguments of mine to hold absolute validity?
<< I am still trying to come in terms with a few of those myself>>
Also the beggining of the thread reads May 223rd right? well maybe .. I got a lot to go through


Matthew Williams John wrote: "Dan,

Sorry, but Matthew beat you to the Godwin's Law entry by almost a week..."


Well it is kind of necessary given the fact that we are talking about 1984. Stalinism, Nazism, it was kinda central, you know.


Dan's Obsessions "I hope someday every citizen of the world know how to think for themselves and live by their own civilized moral guidelines."


Seems like a worthy ideal or guideluine for the up-comming generation
provided this current one won't fall of cliff in the near future..


"But we aren't perfect. All it takes is a crazy person to lead and a band of empty souls to form a powerful group
Reality is, struggle of such kind goes on for as long as there is civilization"

Quite a beast we've managed to raise ourselves there, but I have to disagree on the fact that despite the hard times the human race encountered in the past-- lost and found many privileges ,bettered our way of life in certain aspects, thus we can do more than sit back and watch it all go down the drain. We got tools in use and ways to better them for our means. It's by far a consentious liberal society we leave in, but the degrees of freedom far exceeds the means an authoritative regime has on it's disposal to contain us.

Still I get this feeling of apathy , reigning supreme over most of it's citizens. Maybe I should bring forth a more recent example from my own point of view, to the city I leave in, maybe it can shade some light.


Dan's Obsessions All it takes is a crazy person to lead and a band of empty souls to form a powerful group

Less than a week ago I was on my way downtown through the tubes, on a usual excersion to the city, with no worries at all. The hour was near lunch-break, if I am correct and the crouding was medium, I had no trouble to go through the pages of my beloved treatise on Existentialism, and since there was no fuss I was having no triouble to immerse into the books meanings...
Everything seems nice so far till the unthinkable happened on the back-wagon some fuss could be heard and the train kept on hold for more than usual. Then some sec-guard came escorting a man with a black vest and similar attire on my wagon. Furious the guy protested and hurled ridiculus* insults on him for no apparent reason ( I was to discover later on why he was moved-- most probably he attacked 2 immigrants a few minutes ago). Then a 2nd guard came with a walkie talkie in one hand trying to pursuade him again to "accept" his displacement in the other cart.

Both men were beeing "extremely polite" to him and spoke only a few words, by the time the train finally got on its tracks, the guy was like a gorrila on a cage, verbally attacking anyone in sight on the wagon. two paces past me were 2 by-standers talking to each other, one had a mohawke and excited him. He started cracking jokes to this fella (carefull not to over do it) he didn;t give him a quarter back at him , but that was of no significance, he went on speaking for his Party's strength ** regardless of his own frantic state ( that was clearly portraying hisparty was a case of lunatics). I won't go to further details on what went in there, since on the next stop I went over to the next one, to find some piece and quite. But I could still here the s.o.b. ranting all the way back.
Still I believe I did show a moment of weakness since I could "b**t in" and slow him down on his tracks, but I didn't do a thing (leaving to my dads golden rule, don't raise a fuss if U don't have to)
--recent news: the day b4 yesterday this guys tried to hit back with more of his gang helping along..
--Yesterday: attacking ( in broad daulight) 2 more immigrants inside the wagon , stabbing lightly 2 of them
Result: the trrain attendants, did they best to segregate them on another wagon, for 2 stops, then "detain them if possible" till the police comes to make an arrest. This did not make the Nat. news but I did overheard one of the guys working there goin on the airways to mention thier inadequacy on such situations with diminshed force), not that it would matter anyways. they were too much scared of their own lives in case those vigilantes came back on one of their shifts, looking for them.
Under my own set of rules, I couldn't sit and watch as a pair of thugs murder or violently hit unarmed kiddo's but still I couldn't bear myself to get involved the first time, how could I possibly try anything on that bloody occasion.

>> My conclusion: We are bred to behave like sheep, even in the worst of situations we're strongly conditioned to behave "normal", we have inbred insticts that advice us against direct action. Cause inside a dark whole of our mind we're adjusted better toslavery ( Slavery is Freedom )
More privileged people, although they abuse authority, are meant to know better how it is to be abused by their superiors, and unless they had a higher authority they would crack just like a tree branch.
Only by accepting who U are, are U meant to surprass that, and.. realise yr current potential in ... oouh I am too sleepy can't go on with such a serious argument.
I 'll make sure to check any post before I go over to meet my buddy d-town later today. And by that I mean that I am more than likely to bump into those same animals these thugs again. I won't stand for such intimidation, but I am aware that most ppl would perceive me as an equal threat if I was to start up any fuss against them. If I leave throught it I'll tell U all what occured later tnt (GMT +2hr here)


* he told him he was an un-shaved c**t, looking like a drifter, when oh boy U should have seen his own mug...
** Shouting 7% 22 sits in parliament, now we got U by the b**ls



Dan's Obsessions My answers are commin up way too slow, I like yr reply on this one, will try to comment when possible

But just to let U know yr example there: "and it is a matter of deciding if you're ready to give up life in modern society (cars, wealth and internet, etc.) in exchange for a life you can live for yourself (say on an island)."

I did hear an interview from the supposed culpit of the anonymous "leader" of a small sub-group and what amased me was that this guy... behind wind glasses and a bandane hiding msot of his fearutes, was stating the rather obvious... " to go through and make an impact on the world, I had to leave behind all my past life, most of my friends ( who he still gets back throught i-net) and set up in another place amongst friends out of this country"
this simple fact gives a new direction of action to positive thinkers, who want to do some change, but at the same time scares the s**t out of me. To make a change U do have to get out of a country, with long history of supporting liberal ideas, and so on, simply to attain some remote sence of security {Meaning they don't break into yr own housse in the middle of the night}} Anyway what did u mean by those words there:

"Maybe one, in the name of arts ((<<--), for instance.

Do shade some light."

If U mean if I should bury myself in a tropical island, enjoying the fruits of my art-craft, well I've thought of that already, and maybe I could make do for some time.
But deep down I am a coward who enjoys the fruits of a decadent civilisation regardless of the chains that bind,
and fc I am trying to shed (Shade--like it's done alrady?) some light starting from yr place is the island U leave in any better-- do U fee lless opressed anyhow, feel some solidarity with yr fellow man?


message 48: by [deleted user] (new)

Somebody in this thread - not naming names - is bordering on incoherent. Hopefully this person learns to articulate themselves a bit better so when I try to read their posts, I don't get a headache.

Matthew wrote: "If everything we did was mediated, there would be no basis for change or challenge."

I don't follow the logic of this sentence. Can you unpack it for me?

"And while some people are entirely mediated by their ideology, there are many people who simply try to find their way and aren't ideologically consistent at all."

Whether or not someone is ideologically inconsistent doesn't preclude their mediation through incompatible ideologies. In fact, there's a psychological term for this: cognitive dissonance.

"In fact, I'd say this applies to most people. It's just people who subscribe to the extremes whose lives are consistent with one ideology or another. And it's part of what makes them dangerous and/or insufferable. "

I commend you for bringing this subtopic back to the main thread. But again, my point still stands. There is nothing that we do that isn't mediated through an ideology. Whether that be a personal or political one (and those consistently overlap). It is inescapable.


Dan's Obsessions Well MacGregor I did read yr prof on about-me and to tell U the truth I don't fell the least thraetened, though this simply can'texplain why this thread is going dead all of a sudden.

Secondly I do wish to apologise for my hastely done previous responces, the 1st one was actually done to a borrowed i-mac ( hate those machines) that was missing some keyes, still I did my best
as to yr previous mentioned post's I searched earlier today to identify them on this threrad ,couldn't be found. Anyway I blv Matthew has left this thread for dead.
Are U ready to carry on this debate?


message 50: by Matthew (last edited Jun 01, 2012 10:58AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Matthew Williams macgregor wrote: "If everything we did was mediated, there would be no basis for change or challenge.

I don't follow the logic of this sentence. Can you unpack it for me?"


Yes of course. The argument that everything we do is consistent with ideology or some kind of controlling apparatus assumes that we are essentially just acting out our roles and not really free at all. If that were true, challenge and change would be impossible. There would be no escaping the dominant ideology of society.

"Whether or not someone is ideologically inconsistent doesn't preclude their mediation through incompatible ideologies. In fact, there's a psychological term for this: cognitive dissonance."

Once again, you are assuming that people are simply slaved to ideology. Why can't it be said that a person chooses their stances based on what is appealing to them based on their inherent personality traits or experience? Why does it have to be boiled down to a question of ideology?

And my understanding of cognitive dissonance was that this is the term used to describe a person's reaction when they come into contact with something that challenges their worldview, characterized by disorientation, retrenchment, and defensiveness. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

"...my point still stands. There is nothing that we do that isn't mediated through an ideology. Whether that be a personal or political one (and those consistently overlap). It is inescapable."

Funny you should say this, considering how idiosyncratic your arguments here are. This may be your opinion but that doesn't make it fact or unassailable. And if it's true, then your basic stance here is merely an extension of your own ideology, the product of what you were taught.


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