Thursday 31 October 2013

A withdrawal management, detox programme for mass media addiction and indoctrination


Actually, there is really no need for anything complex in this endeavor; since withdrawal from the mass media is more like going 'cold turkey' from heroin (feels very bad, but won't kill you) than it is like suddenly stopping alcohol consumption (very dangerous, often fatal).


Breaking-out from mass media addiction and the accompanying indoctrination, (manipulation into evil) is for many people the vital first step in recovering from the nihilistic psychosis of modern life.

But the good news is that the process is simple and the healing is spontaneous; because it is only the continuous high volume consumption of mass media that is keeping us ill.

So, at root, the detox progam is merely a matter of Just. Say. No.


1. Do not seek out mass media.
2. Develop mental 'blinkers' so as not to notice or be distracted by mass media.
3. Turn away (physically and or mentally) when you do notice and are distracted by mass media.


Positive treatment entails

1. Filling-up your mind with good things
2. Living in the present moment (self remembering Me! Here! Now!), take notice of experience as it happens.
3. Ensuring unstructured, undistracted solitary time - walking, travelling, sitting etc.


A new evaluation system:

1. Attitudes - treat the mass media as you would a conference of con-men; people you know are out to exploit you: somehow, anyhow.

2. Knowledge - Recognise that the Mass Media is so dishonest that you know nothing from it: there is biased reporting, gross selection within reports, and there are made-up lies and falsehoods seeded throughout.

Thus the Mass media is misleading in its general trend, its specific framing, and in its fine detail. Nothing about it can be assumed correct. And it is in practice very seldom possible to detect discount all of the ongoing dishonestys: the most dangerous delusion is that you personally can filter the mass media, decode and see through its biases, selections and lies to discern the truth of the situation.


So there is no programme for quitting the mass media, no 'antidote' is required; rather the de-programming begins to happen as soon as you begin significantly to cut yourself off from the mass media.

Of course you will still be wrong about many things - probably about most things - but you will no longer be believing or spouting utterly incoherent nonsense.

This is not about trying to be right about everything but about trying to avoid the common state of being crazily and incurably wrong about all the most important things of life.

Only after you have escaped from the toils of the mass media can you, will you, begin again to thinks-straight - to see what is going-on in yourself, your life and the world around you.

For many. mass media withdrawal is a necessary first step in pursuit of anything better. Because so long as someone is addicted to the mass media, all potential gains are swept-away by unrelenting distraction; by recurrent episodes of amnesia or intoxication.



Samson J. said...

So how to keep abreast of news and politics, then?

Bruce Charlton said...

@SJ - Don't. Obviously!

Wm Jas said...

"Who is Elizabeth Taylor?" asked C. S. Lewis. He and I were talking about the difference between "prettiness" and "beauty", and I suggested that Miss Taylor was a great beauty. "If you read newspapers," I said to Lewis, "you would know who she is." "Ah-h-h-h!" said Lewis playfully, "but that is how I keep myself 'unspotted from the world'." He recommended that if I absolutely "must" read newspapers I have a frequent "mouthwash" with The Lord of the Rings or some other great book.

(from Walter Hooper's introduction to Present Concerns)

Samson J. said...

Yes, obviously. But that seems irresponsible towards our children and their future.

Greg said...

Samson, what do you mean by that comment? Are you suggesting that keeping abreast of news and politics will somehow change the circumstances in which your children live?

heaviside said...

Any concerted action to disenfranchise the media will by extension disenfranchise a certain designated victim group.

Though, I realize BGC is not really advocating political action.

Bruce Charlton said...

@h - You are right. This has to be at a level of individuals plus (if appropriate) religious/ ideological groups.

You have to get used-to incredulity at your ignorance from people who keep-up with 'the news' - and try to avoid trying to create any impression that you are au fait. But I suppose that is just a further training in honesty.

One step in the right direction might be to stop using objective language about mass media communications, and instead use the language of opinions and hearsay (which is, of course, the actual operating system of the mass media).

So when discussing something - say discussing what is happening in Syria - you could say "What is your opinion about what people say is happening?" (rather than saying supposedly objective things like: "what is happening?" or: "is it right or wrong?").

Or about a person (especially a media hate figure) "what did you hear that he was supposed to have said?" (and not the objective: "what did he say?")

Anonymous said...

I am trying to think of a situation in which "knowledge" of current events is necessary for being a good parent, and I am drawing a blank.