The Media Trap

Perhaps one of the best things I have listened to recently is a Joe Rogan Experience interview with Tristan Harris who spent three years as a google Ethicist developing a framework for how technology should “ethically” steer the thoughts and actions of billions of people from screens. (Hint, its still a big problem.)

The Media Trap

It is a trap and most are caught in it. The consolidation of the media is such that now there are six corporations owning about 90% of all media. They own Radio, Television, Cable, Social Media, Movie Studios and the production of content for the internet. No doubt I have left something out but you get the picture. All of these media share a particular power of persuasion, they all induce a light trance, a changing of brainwaves into Alpha -- a light trance. The problem with a trance that is induced by these media is that there is a subconscious doorway opened in trance for content to reach your subconscious mind. There are many ways to embed content that you will never notice. When video went digital years ago it opened the door to embeding subliminal content. This is content that your conscious mind most likely would not agree with. After twenty-five years of study and working as a hypnotherapist I do not make such claims lightly. Here is my Hypnotherapy website.

You are getting very sleepy. How media puts you into a trance and programs you.

Five years ago I came across this article about television (and video games etc.).

This is more important now than ever as we are being exposed to massive fear porn and manipulation by the six companies that own most of the media.

The article was written fifteen years ago and the link I provide to it at the bottom of this article is no longer functioning and the website is no more. The author was Wes Moore. Here is his article.

“Alright junkies, I know you don’t like staring at long strands of motionless text, and I know it’s a struggle for you to analyze and comprehend the meaning of complex sequences of words. But if you give me just a few minutes, I will let you in on a little secret that marketers and governments have been relying on for decades. That television you watch every day, your secret best friend, is an addictive opiate, and not only that, it’s one of the most potent mind control devices ever produced. And I’m not just basing this on intuition. I have the neurological evidence to prove it.

Although the definitions are vague and somewhat misleading, the word “addiction” usually refers to a psychological or physical dependence on a particular experience that must be repeated in order for a person to be comfortable. Usually, we think about this in terms of chemical addiction, which occurs when the addict’s chemical of choice reorganizes the nervous system so that it requires the presence of that chemical to operate smoothly.

Of course, not all addictions are chemical. Any behavior that leads to a pleasurable experience will be repeated , especially if that behavior requires little work. Psychologists call this pattern “positive reinforcement” . This is what we mean, technically speaking, by addiction. In this sense, television certainly fits into the category of an addictive agent.

When you watch TV, brain activity switches from the left to the right hemisphere. In fact, experiments conducted by researcher Herbert Krugman showed that while viewers are watching television, the right hemisphere is twice as active as the left, a neurological anomaly. The crossover from left to right releases a surge of the body’s natural opiates: endorphins, which include beta-endorphins and enkephalins. Endorphins are structurally identical to opium and its derivatives (morphine, codeine, heroin, etc.). Activities that release endorphins (also called opioid peptides) are usually habit-forming (we rarely call them addictive). These include cracking knuckles, strenuous exercise, and orgasm. External opiates act on the same receptor sites (opioid receptors) as endorphins, so there is little difference between the two.

In fact, strenuous exercise, which produces the nominal “runner’s high”- a release of endorphins that flood the system, can be highly addictive, to the point where “addicts” who abruptly stop exercising experience opiate-withdrawal symptoms, namely migraine headaches. These migraines are caused by a dysfunction in opioid receptors, which are accustomed to the steady influx of endorphins.

Indeed, even casual television viewers experience such opiate-withdrawal symptoms if they stop watching TV for a prolonged period of time. An article from South Africa’s Eastern Province Herald (October 1975) described two experiments in which people from various socio-economic milieus were asked to stop watching television. In one experiment, several families volunteered to turn off their TV’s for just one month. The poorest family gave in after one week, and the others suffered from depression, saying they felt as though they had “lost a friend.” In the other experiment, 182 West Germans agreed to kick their television viewing habit for a year, with the added bonus of payment. None could resist the urge longer than six months, and over time all of the participants showed the symptoms of opiate-withdrawal: increased anxiety, frustration, and depression.

The signs of addiction are all around us. The average American watches over four hours of television every day, and 49% of those continue to watch despite admitting to doing it excessively. These are the classic indicators of an addict in denial: addicts know they’re doing harm to themselves, but continue to use the drug regardless.

Recent studies on laboratory rats show that opioid-receptor stimulants induce addictive behaviors. The evidence is conclusive: all opioids are addictive! Even the ones your body produces naturally. The television set works as a high-tech drug delivery system, and we all feel its effects. The question is, can an addiction to television be destructive? The answer we receive from modern science is a resounding “Yes!”

First of all, when you’re watching television the higher brain regions (like the midbrain and the neo-cortex) are shut down, and most activity shifts to the lower brain regions (like the limbic system). The neurological processes that take place in these regions cannot accurately be called “cognitive.” The lower or reptile brain simply stands poised to react to the environment using deeply embedded “fight or flight” response programs. Moreover, these lower brain regions cannot distinguish reality from fabricated images (a job performed by the neo-cortex), so they react to television content as though it were real, releasing appropriate hormones and so on. Studies have proven that, in the long run, too much activity in the lower brain leads to atrophy in the higher brain regions.

It is interesting to note that the lower/reptile/limbic brain correlates to the bio-survival circuit of the Leary /Wilson 8 Circuit Model of Consciousness. This is our primal circuit, the base “presence” that we normally associate with consciousness. This is the circuit where we receive our first neurological imprint (the oral imprint), which conditions us to advance toward anything warm, pleasurable and/or protective in the environment. The bio-survival circuit is our most infantile, our most primal way of dealing with reality.

A person obsessed with the pursuit of physical pleasure is probably fixated on this circuit; in fact the Freudians believed an opium addiction was an attempt to return to the womb. We could logically deduce that such addictions occur when higher brain functions are anesthetized and the newly dominant lower brain seeks out pleasure at any cost. Taking this into account, television is like a double edged sword: not only does it cause the endocrine system to release the body’s natural opiates (endorphins), but it also concentrates neurological activity in the lower brain regions where we are motivated by nothing but the pursuit of pleasure. Television produces highly functional, mobile “bio-survival robots.”

Herbert Krugman’s research proved that watching television numbs the left brain and leaves the right brain to perform all cognitive duties. This has some harrowing implications for the effects of television on brain development and health. For one, the left hemisphere is the critical region for organizing, analyzing, and judging incoming data. The right brain treats incoming data uncritically, and it does not decode or divide information into its component parts.

The right brain processes information in wholes, leading to emotional rather than intelligent responses. We cannot rationally attend to the content presented on television because that part of our brain is not in operation. It is therefore unsurprising that people rarely comprehend what they see on television, as was shown by a study conducted by researcher Jacob Jacoby. Jacoby found that, out of 2,700 people tested, 90% misunderstood what they watched on television only minutes before. As yet there is no explanation as to why we switch to the right brain while viewing television, but we do know this phenomenon is immune to content.

For a brain to comprehend and communicate complex meaning, it must be in a state of “chaotic disequilibrium.” This means that there must be a dynamic flow of communication between all of the regions of the brain, which facilitates the comprehension of higher levels of order (breaking conceptual thresholds), and leads to the formation of complex ideas. High levels of chaotic brain activity are present during challenging tasks like reading, writing, and working mathematical equations in your head. They are not present while watching TV.

Levels of brain activity are measured by an electroencenograph (EEG) machine. While watching television, the brain appears to slow to a halt, registering low alpha wave readings on the EEG. This is caused by the radiant light produced by cathode ray technology within the television set. Even if you’re reading text on a television screen the brain registers low levels of activity. Once again, regardless of the content being presented, television essentially turns off your nervous system.

In addition to its devastating neurological effects, television can be harmful to your sense of self-worth, your perception of your environment , and your physical health. Recent surveys have shown that 75% of American women think they are overweight, likely the result of watching chronically thin actresses and models four hours a day.

Television has also spawned a “culture of fear” in the U.S. and beyond, with its focus on the limbic brain-friendly sensationalism of violent programming. Studies have shown that people of all generations greatly overestimate the threat of violence in real life. This is no shock because their brains cannot discern reality from fiction while watching TV.

Ricks Note: Television has gotten much worse in terms of violence, propaganda, and utter banality and stupidity.

Television is bad for your body as well. Obesity, sleep deprivation, and stunted sensory development are all common among television addicts.

So I hope we’ve firmly established that television is an addictive drug, one that is no better than opium, heroin, or any other opiate. Television is just as (and possibly even more) harmful to the body-brain as every other drug. But there’s one big difference. All other drugs apparently pose a threat to the established social order. Television, however, is a drug that is actually essential to maintaining the social infrastructure. Why? Because it brainwashes consumers to throw money at the gaping void of their meaningless, terror-filled lives. And by brainwashed, I mean they’ve been hypnotized using very subtle and established techniques which, when coupled with television’s natural effects on brain waves, make for the most ambitious psychological engineering ruse ever concocted.

Psychophysiologist Thomas Mulholland found that after just 30 seconds of watching television the brain begins to produce alpha waves , which indicates torpid (almost comatose) rates of activity. Alpha brain waves are associated with unfocused, overly receptive states of consciousness. A high frequency alpha waves does not occur normally when the eyes are open. In fact, Mulholland’s research implies that watching television is neurologically analogous to staring at a blank wall.

I should note that the goal of hypnotists is to induce slow brain wave states. Alpha waves are present during the “light hypnotic” state used by hypno-therapists for suggestion therapy.

When Mulholland’s research was published it greatly impacted the television industry, at least in the marketing and advertising sector. Realizing viewers automatically enter a trance state while watching television, marketers began designing commercials that produce unconscious emotional states or moods within the viewer. The aim of commercials is not to appeal to the rational or conscious mind (which usually dismisses advertisements) but rather to implant moods that the consumer will associate with the product when it is encountered in real life. When we see product displays at a store, for instance, those positive emotions are triggered . Endorsements from beloved athletes and other celebrities evoke the same associations. If you’ve ever doubted the power of television advertising, bear this in mind: commercials work better if you’re not paying attention to them!

An addictive mind control device . . . what more could a government or profit-driven corporation ask for? But the really sad thing about television is that it turns everyone into a zombie, no one is immune. There is no higher order of super-intelligent, nefarious beings behind this. It’s the product of our very human desire to alter our state of consciousness and escape the hardships of reality .

We’re living in a Brave New World , only it’s not so brave, or even that new. In fact, it’s starting to look more and more like the Dark Ages, with the preliterate zombie masses obeying the authority of the new clergy: Regis Philbin and Jerry Springer .”

Television:Opiate Of The Masses By: Wes Moore May 5, 2001


The Problem with Images

There is a big problem with images and their interaction with the subconscious mind. I was just glancing at my wife’s phone this evening and there was a video of a police officer punching a man who was laying on the ground. It was violent. My wife told me it was a man having a seizure and was trying to explain it to the police officer.

That moment of watching reminded me that I have been planning to write about images and the subconscious mind. This is why I have left Facebook and Instagram.

The subconscious mind is kind of like a video camera recording everything that goes on in your life and storing it. Unlike a video camera, it also records and store the emotions you feel. You might say all that you have ever experienced is stored on some cosmic hard drive that is all about you.

Media: television, computers, phones, tablets, internet, social media and printed material; they all function in ways that can be quite unhealthy for you. You might be absent mindedly scrolling through Facebook and you think the images you see and are uninteresting are not affecting you — but they are. They are all messages going to your subconscious mind and the subconscious mind is not like your conscious mind, and whenever your conscious mind and subconscious mind are in conflict, guess which of these minds wins? The winner is the subconscious mind.

So, I have been off social media for a while now and I am finding myself reading more, walking more, contemplating more, and, less interested in television. I can say so many things about television but I would rather you read an article here in my blog about television as it is very detailed. All you really need to know is that when you are watching television you will quickly enter a Alpha brainwave state. Alpha is a light trance state and functions to allow the information on the screen to bypass you conscious reasoning mind. The advertisers know this and have spent billions of dollars to get their images and emotional states into your brain, always implying that you will be so much happier, prettier, more successful, sexier, better liked, more important, and so on. All states of being in lack can be resolved by buying that product. And, oh , if only it would be so.

The mind is like a little pig. What you feed it, it becomes. Give your mind nutritional images attached to good feelings and life gets better. We are in a time where the controllers of the media seem hell bent on stirring up troubling emotions and splitting the country in any manner they can.

Avoid getting your information from the mainstream media and the social networks, they no longer can be trusted. (I checked recently and about every third or fourth Instagram post is an ad and that is about the same with Facebook — images and videos into your subconscious mind) You are the product they harvest and sell. Your likes and your dislikes are just mega data sold to corporations and used by the government to keep tabs on you. It is a powerful form of mind control and only you can disconnect yourself from it.

The most damaging thing about scrolling through your feed is the emotional toll it takes consciously and subconsciously.

Jason Lanier is interviewed about social media and how it ruins your life. He says there are primarily two reasons to leave social media: one is for your own good, and the other is for the good of society. The Interview

Google is an Influence Engine

Time to let Google go and find an alternative. How does Google make billions of dollars? Simple, selling your data to others for their purposes. How does Google make more money? By changing your beliefs and habits on behalf of someone, some company, or a governmental entity. Google is not a search engine, Google is an influence engine, changing the way you thing by "deciding" how you should think by manipulating the outcomes of your search. All of this is aided by an impressive "Artificial Intelligence" that knows you and your type; that is, people like you based on your browsing habits.

I have an article for you and it is long and detailed and I can summarize it by saying that the existence of Google came about in part by a investment from and partnership with the Pentagon. "From inception, in other words, Google was incubated, nurtured and financed by interests that were directly affiliated or closely aligned with the US military intelligence community...." The connections with various goverment agencies will astound you when you read this article.


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