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Dumbing Down By: Philip Gardiner

Anonymous Coward
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01/13/2009 10:25 AM
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Dumbing Down By: Philip Gardiner
Dumbing Down By: Philip Gardiner

Dumbing Down

To dumb down is quite simply to treat people as if they were dumb, and this is a big issue in the world today. Let me give you an example. On a breakfast show on TV recently there was a story run about James Bond in-order to promote the latest film. A competition was announced to win holidays in some far off exotic location. This was an obvious advertisement for the holiday company promoting its Bond-style holidays and also for the film itself. Everybody jumps on the band-wagon when something big like this happens and so the normal chat-room style element of the breakfast show was used to get at the people at home on a cold winters morning in the UK who were all about to trudge off to work. The idea of a Bond (and hence attachment of the self to this concept) and the warm sunny climes was an obvious diversionary tactic to pull upon the inner desires of people. Now of course this isn't dumb, it's very clever on the part of the marketing man and the networking and gelling of the various media and organisations to enable this feat of mental manipulation.

In fact the dumb element and in my opinion the insulting part came when they gave the question: What is the code of James Bond? Well, if you had been on Mars for the past 50 years I could understand you not knowing the number immediately, but to help all the aliens along they gave us three options:

Was it A) 007 B) 006 or C) 005? Well, do you know the answer? Well if you do then you could call a phone number in your excitement and spend £1 (about $2 then) making the call, leaving your name, address and email with a machine which then takes that information and uses it by selling it to other marketing companies for mail-shots and all-manner of things. Of course the truth of this is that it is a wonderfully ingenious money-making scheme. The holiday costs around £3000 and yet sells for around £10000 and so we appear to win a holiday worth £10000! Hundreds of thousands of people jump up off their couches and dial (if indeed the phone isn't a wireless version that rests permanently beside them along with their mobile phone, DVD remote, TV remote, VHS remote and of course the cable remote.) Each call sells at £1, making hundreds of thousands of pounds. The holiday company gets free advertising, Bond gets free advertising, the marketing companies sell on the data and the TV station makes a huge profit.
The question is purposefully simple, so that people rush around making calls, spending huge amounts of money. This happens every single day of the year, several times a day. Imagine how much money is being made from stupidly simple competitions like this. Imagine what we could do with such money - like help to save dying species for instance. Instead we hand over our brains and our money to this lowest of rubbish and feed further the machine that dreamt it up.

This little tale is a prime example of what is occurring in the world of the media. It is not just within the realms of television, this occurs too on radio, in magazines, on the internet and in direct sales efforts such as telesales and direct mail. We are all constantly bombarded with this inept nonsense. We no longer have to think too hard, because all the work is being done for us. The answers to quizzes are easy, the traps set and the gullible beguiled. It seems everybody and everything in the public gaze is now succumbing to these methods. Even our politicians speak to the masses as if they are stupid and we only have ourselves to blame. You see there is a reason for all this and it may be driven by greed, but it is used because of one thing.

The Lowest Common Denominator

Because all these simple systems work on the majority of people, from young to old, then the rest of us have to put up with it. This is the lowest common denominator. For instance we all have to put up with the government that democracy says via votes is the popular choice. The votes are being cast by the same people who rush to their phones and spend millions in the example above. Is this an intellectual decision? Are we truly getting the government that is best for us? Or are we getting the government that has proven to be the best at spinning a dumbed down message to the masses? I know I am being very naughty here and I will leave that political thought to the reader, suffice to say democracy may be something that we have not really experienced yet.

The fact is that whatever the masses are fed upon will be the result of what the masses produce. If we feed animals rubbish all the time then they will eventually lose strength, energy, die younger and have reduced brain power. We are doing exactly this to ourselves and I say we only have ourselves to blame because we begin the cycle ourselves by watching the programmes, reading the magazines and listening to the radio stations. Once trapped into the cycle we will find it difficult to get out again, because we more than often do not even realise we are in it. Because this banal nonsense works on the masses we all have no choice but to switch off or join in. There are precious few outlets left for those who know themselves and think for themselves. We are already losing strength and energy and the masses certainly are experiencing reduced brain power, as governments reduce school targets and the media lower their standards daily to accommodate the power of the mass buy.

As if to prove the point of the effect upon the brain I recently did an experiment. I had flown back to the UK from a gruelling trip to California, where I had spoken on hundreds of radio stations, TV shows and lectures. My mind was weary with all the effort and I was exhausted with repeating the same thing over and over. I needed a small break and so I took a trip into the countryside to recharge my batteries. We, as a family had a lovely time and whilst away I had space to contemplate. The routine of the past few days, the travelling, the rushing around, all faded away and I was again balanced out with nature (the force). My mind was perfectly energised and I sat for hours reading a good book. But then the thought struck me that I ought to now try a polarity experiment and so when I returned from the break, and having no promotional activities to do for over a week, I decided to rot in front of the television and watch the utter rubbish that makes up 90% of the viewing timetable. I purposefully did not read or spend my time communicating with the people that I normally did. I had reasons for this that I shall soon come to.

The effect of this week-long experiment was that my usually energetic mind slowed down to almost a full stop. I lost all will to get up and move. I fell in with the patterns of the sit-com, which at the start all seemed to be the same, following the same patterns and making the same jokes again and again. These patterns engulfed my mind and I allowed it to happen for the experiment. Thoughts of the esoteric world, of books, of secrets and history were a far-off land to me now. I was alone on an island supported by the morals and choices of thousands of actors, presenters and script writers. Whatever they said I mopped up like a sponge. They were, after-all, my only input for days. I am embarrassed to say that I even started to like a couple of the inane shows.

By the end of the week, the old me had almost disappeared and yet there was sufficient left to know that this was the end of the experiment and that I needed to jump back into the water and swim back to my reality. In fact, this was easier said than done. On the first day it was such a bind having to pick up a book and read and yet I knew I must, for I had a number of radio interviews planned and needed to regain my (sometimes) lucid mind. And so my drive and determination won out and I pushed myself to read and read. There was a book in every room and I almost desperately lunged myself into intellectual conversation with friends and family, who were all baffled by my strange nature. Eventually and almost right up to the first radio interview I came around and re-started my grey matter.

But what did this experiment reveal? And how does this work? Understanding the mechanics behind this perfectly natural issue will help us to understand our own mind and how we can stop ourselves becoming the lowest common denominator.


The brain is a complicated thing and yet it is what makes us who we are. I can lose a leg or an arm and still be me. But I cannot lose my head and remain Philip Gardiner. But this experiment revealed that I can in fact lose my head without visiting the guillotine. I can lose myself in the world of others, in the world of the lowest common denominator and I can become a sheep, preyed upon by wolves. There must be a physical reason behind this loss of self and indeed there is.

When we read, we have to interpret the letters into words and the words into imagery or some other form we can comprehend - we have to turn the code into our own language. These words and letters are based upon symbols from ancient times and so they affect our deeper psyche also - pulling upon the archetypes within. These same archetypes made the symbols thousands of years ago when ancient man carved or painted them into rock. Now we see these symbols across time in the form of letters. S for instance was based upon the serpent or snake and in fact so too were a great many letters. These are archetypes our subconscious and even unconscious mind recognises. This takes brain power to convert that which we see. When we use energy in the form of electromagnetism via our biological and chemical brain we open up pathways and reconnect older ones. We remember things we have learned and join the dots in our circuitry - keeping alive the mind and making it stronger and more efficient. Everybody's brains are roughly the same size and yet we are not all of equal intelligence. The reason for this is because some open and keep open the neural pathways in their brain by usage. We also keep open our connection to the ancient archetypes within our minds. These are the things, symbols and images, ideas and concepts that we all share genetically via evolution. An archetype is an image from which a thing is made - it is the form inside of us that is manifested in the physical world as symbol, text, building, art or even music. It is the connection to the natural world and we therefore, by reading myths, fables and stories from times past, keep this connection open, because we unconsciously recognise this within ourselves. And so, by working our brain with the right things, such as reading, we remain alive and lucid. These connections are also aided by music, the right food and influences. These come with knowledge too, knowledge that we should read the right thing, listen to music that touches our archetypes and eat the correct food.

The other side of this peculiar coin are the moments when we stop working the brain. For instance by watching the television what actually happens? Well, we are fed everything we need to know (or not) and so we do not have to concentrate too much. There are no words to read and convert, as all of the conversion has been done for us. The words are spoken to us and we are entertained often with a musical background. The images we would use our brain - and thereby imagination - to create from the written word, are now images already created for us on the screen. We are using another person's mind to do our work. Whole armies of people have come together to create a series of images and sounds so that we don't have to. No longer do we read Lord of the Rings and imagine the little Hobbits and the beautiful Elves, instead we simply relax back let the world pass us by and let somebody else do all the work. This is not always a bad thing of course, but like most things in life, we humans overdo it. Even our modern news channels dumb down the news into short accessible bites that we can deal with more easily on a simple level. These short bites are sugar coated with images, graphs and pretty pictures to further assist our brain, so we don't have to think too deeply.

In today's world there are millions of battles fought daily between marketing men and advertisers, producers and directors, radio hosts and designers, all scrambling around finding the latest and most advanced method of producing an "experience" for the people - to grab their attention, keep their interest and form desires leading to actions. Alas the actions required are now more often than not to spend our money or move us to vote one way or another. They are manipulations of a brain that is not thinking for itself and therefore will do as it is told. This is why images, sound and feel are all created for us by the corporate giants - so that we don't have chance to think for ourselves and therefore follow like lemmings, however subtly this may be.
Of course there is nothing new or different here to what has been happening for an awfully long time. Every Sunday the masses would be crammed like sardines into Church where the priest would read to them. The masses were not allowed to read or learn Latin - this was the role of the elite. Instead the people had to believe what they were being told. More than that though, the bored or inattentive would find it easier to stare at the stained glass windows where depictions and images of the stories were relayed in simple form for the ordinary man to comprehend. Songs were created using repetition and alliteration ramming the message home and we repeated these "catchy" tunes in our minds, thus distracting us yet again from thinking for ourselves. Man did not have to think for himself and so followed blindly.

There is nothing different happening today. Instead of filing into Church on Sunday morning the people wake to the annoyance of the alarm clock which tells them what to do. They then pour a coffee full of caffeine - the daily fix. Over breakfast, instead of conversing and sharing with their family they sit like zombies and watch the television where they are fed yet more rubbish. They are fully prepared for the daily cycle of earn and spend, before they then try to wind down with alcohol and fall asleep watching yet more rubbish, whilst eating junk food.

Escape is so easy and yet so difficult. It is easy to say and yet harder to do. The first dilemma is how do we even become aware that we are in fact caught in a trap? There are a great many who know all about the trap, and yet are happy within it. This is no different to the film the Matrix, whereby Neo has to decide whether to take the pill that will free him from this dream world state once and for all. People are simply happy not to have to work the brain, especially when everything is done for them. Others, like Neo, see that the reality of freedom is much more liberating for the mind. Think about a rabbit. Let us assume that we have two rabbits in a cage. They seem perfectly happy. They eat the food we place before them and play with the toys. They happily watch the world go by. Now let us take one of these rabbits and set it free into the world of nature. Suddenly the rabbit realises that it can run free and explore. It can interact with other rabbits and become excited at the new opportunities that this whole new world has placed before him. The rabbit that remains in the cage knows no different and so is not unhappy. Now let us go back into the wild and catch the freed rabbit. We place it back in its cage and what do we find? We find a rabbit who now gnaws at the wire, eager and desperate to escape once again. We may also find that this rabbit will influence the caged one and lead to revolution. Similar cycles have been found in the human world at large when freedom is tasted by the few and spread to the many, causing revolutions on a grand scale.

I am of the opinion that if the world of dumbing down becomes too oppressive for the human nature then we will have revolution upon our hands. My reason for stating this is simple. Firstly that it has happened again and again in the past. Most, if not all, revolutions of mankind's history have been caused by one man or a few men finding freedom and then passing it on to others. They suddenly see, as if in a flash of light, that they have been oppressed by their leaders. Often in the light of our modern minds these historical oppressions seem obvious to us now, but at the time it was not so, because the people were living in the cage and not outside of it. Once the rabbit is out of the cage the freedom sighted spreads like wildfire and all the rabbits start gnawing.

The second reason for stating that we may one day have revolution is simple - nature. I am not talking about nature in the form of countryside, instead I am talking about force. It is the strongest force in the universe because it is the universe. It will, as a force, find balance. Let's look at an example in-order to understand what I mean.

In the beginning scientists tell us that there was a big bang (although disputed by some). There was an initial period of chaos and then ordered gases and solids began to emerge. Eventually out of this new order arose life. Nature, the force of the universe, found order and then life, it is the life-force. This same life-force or nature is within each and every living being, plant, animal, mineral, fluid - well in fact there is nowhere it cannot be. We are part of it. If that is the case then we follow it, because we have precious little choice. However bastardised we have made this force in the human conscious realm with our conscious dabbling, it is still the result of a natural drive. The drive to be alpha dominant for instance. But examples in nature show us that what is not good for the evolution of the species is eventually driven out or adapted. I am of the opinion that the dumbing down of the human species on such a wide and mass scale is not good for the evolution of the humans, which have, after all developed consciousness and free-thinking as a result of the forces of nature.

Today billions of humans exist on this planet of ours and it is growing by the day. We are storing up and creating a human bomb that will one day explode inwardly or outwardly as a result of the oppressive nature of our media and capitalist lead system. This is no different to why Russia exploded with the red revolution or why the French rose up against the oppressive Royalty. Islam uses this scenario as a tool to beat the West and would only replace it with another form of oppression in the form of the written word - the Koran.

It seems that no matter which period of modern history we wish to look at, the same forms of oppression and dumbing down have been utilised to great extent, whether by government, religion or Royalty.

But what can we do to escape this living Matrix? The first thing to know, is thy self. This self is trapped in the unconscious world, forced downwards by the conscious world of mankind. It's like this: close your eyes now and imagine you are walking down a country lane with your dog. You watch as he runs off barking at the birds. Now open your senses and hear the other noises, the sound of the wind in the trees, the distant cars, the autumn leaves crumbling beneath your feet. Do this whilst still concentrating on the dog. Now, whilst doing both of these processes, be conscious of everything within your vision. The trees, the branches, every single leaf; the bugs, the blue sky dotted with wispy white clouds, the gravel underfoot, the soil, the fallen trees. Can you possibly hold all this information in your conscious mind all at once? I can't.

Our brain has a function that closes down unnecessary perceptions. We may be subconsciously aware of these things, but only to send messages to the unconscious world and often for defence. For instance we may always be listening out for threats. But the unconscious world is aware of all this, works with it, is driven itself by the forces of nature. The conscious world cannot cope and closes down perceptions. This is why dumbing down human's works so well, because we all have so much to think about and do. There are just too many things for us all to concentrate on and so we entrap ourselves in the less sensory world, alleviating our minds of the pressure. But this is a false answer to the conundrum, because by allowing our minds to close off even more we in fact are able to deal with less and less, until eventually we are no better than caged rabbits. The conscious mind needs expansion by feeding it good food that teaches it to cope with the expansion and allows it to be one with the unconscious world - in tune with nature and the force of nature.

We need to break out of the cage and run around in the wild like a fluffy tailed bunny rabbit in world of freedom - for believe me, there are plenty of carrots for the picking.
Once we have understood this we can begin to find ourselves under the conscious realm. We need to sit calmly and open our perceptions to the person we are and not who we are told to be or try to be. I am not the many people I revere and adore, I am me and I am part of the natural force. I do not need another man to imagine my world for me or draw pictures in place of the written world. I have my own imagination and powerful thoughts that can discover the links to archetypes within my unconscious realm. Give me the real and full story, don't patronise me; give me something useful and fulfilling, not how to become a supermodel or racing car driver. Let us be part of nature once again and stop fighting it with our silly ways. You never know, we may in fact find that we enjoy the freedom.
The Professor
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01/13/2009 10:46 AM
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Re: Dumbing Down By: Philip Gardiner
Five stars for a fantastic post!!
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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01/13/2009 02:51 PM
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Re: Dumbing Down By: Philip Gardiner
Thank you