All through history we can find examples of the two types of people I’m going to talk about. For the purposes of this article, there are two types of people, those who bury their head in the sand and those who keep their head on a swivel. In my eyes, it is very tragic that so many choose to stay ignorant. Some people are simply ignorant due to lack of information perhaps because of their living situation. However, I find that people in this situation are not the kind of people I’m trying to refer to here. Ignorance is not bliss to these people, it just so happens that they have not been exposed to certain information. The types of people I’m talking about are those who have been exposed to information, yet, choose to live in a fantasy world. Like in Plato’s Allegory of The Cave, out of the four prisoners, only one escaped and was willing to leave the cave and the puppet show behind. The others willingly stayed behind and chose to live as a slave and in the fantasy world.
I’m not sure if there is a precise enough word for individuals who live as if they are invulnerable to new information, but there is a popular slang term being used a lot, “sheeple”. I don’t want to delve into ad hominem or name calling, so while it would be easier to just label these kinds of people, I feel it’s more responsible and educational to fully describe them rather than relying on a single blanket word like “sheeple”. In order to do so, I’ll share personal situations from my life to help define these kinds of people without a blanket label. In my life, I have attempted to wake several people up and in doing so have lost friends, family, and relationships along the way. It is frightening to me that some people cannot handle the truth. It reminds me of the story 1984, 2+2=5. People want 2+2 to equal 5 because the delusion is apparently easier to deal with. I have had people literally melt down and cry simply because I challenged their politics, people have literally screamed at me for suggesting they were mistaken, and worst of all have shunned me from their life for pointing out what I believe in. I always make sure to tell these people, that when or if they decide we don’t have to be enemies over a disagreement, to come talk to me again. So far, not one person has stepped back into my life. I just hope they realize it was they who chose not to be around me anymore, that I miss them greatly, and I am deeply concerned for their well-being after choosing to live the lie. Some people cannot be helped because they do not want to be helped. Keep in mind, this is the majority of people around me. Also, just as a reminder, this has little to do with personal politics. I am not attempting to claim superiority over anyone but I am suggesting that some people need to open up their hearts and minds.
In contrast there are also people who simply cannot stand not knowing. I like to count myself in with this crowd, but it’s not so easy to crowd these kinds of people in either. So again, I’m going to avoid using single terms like “awake” or “enlightened” because of what comes with the seeking of knowledge and new information. This means my truth may contradict another persons truth. This leads to conversation, debate, and argument which gives further definition and substance to ideas. This will also lead to experimentation, which is probably the most important aspect to all of this. Guesses are a start, but no matter how smart, good-looking, or social someone is, a guess is inferior to experimentation. These kinds of people are not afraid of being wrong. To me, it seems like those who are truly seeking knowledge and understanding are happy to learn when they are wrong and enjoy having been corrected. This shows me a great deal more maturity in contrast to those who choose to remain ignorant to the world around them. This doesn’t mean these types of people are superior or better than anyone else, what it does mean though is that they are more willing to broaden their hearts and minds to encompass something greater than themselves.
I feel the need to consistently reiterate the point about one not being “better” than the other. As I have grown and learned more about myself and the world around me, I have come to find that sometimes people are very awake and aware but it will not seem like it at first until you really get to know them. This goes back to being open-minded, patient, compassionate, and kind to others around you. I believe there is a very specific reason why some people keep their head down, yet, have a tremendous amount of knowledge and wisdom. The reason I am referring to is bullying.
Bullying is a large part, in my view, of why people keep their head down and stay out of the conversation. It causes people to avoid confrontation and to fear rejection of their ideas. While I believe there is help for these folks, have a bit of tough love for them. What kind of excuse is that? If that’s what your excuse is I can’t help but imagine that you are less interested in learning and more interested in pushing a certain agenda. While I may be wrong in saying that, there is an old saying, “You can’t help others until you’re able to help yourself.” This, in my opinion, is exactly right, especially in this article. If you have an idea about reality and you share it with others who might have some constructive criticism and you react negatively to it, you are a perfect example of someone who would rather stay ignorant. The point here is keeping your mind open. Perhaps your ideas are sound and beneficial, however, closing off to everyone around you just because they see it a little differently is not helping you or anyone. In fact, this kind of attitude only serves to discredit your ideas if you are unwilling to even listen to a different angle. The danger in behaving this way is that you may begin to feel you are just superior to others, that you know something they do not, therefore, should be able to tell them how to think and feel. The danger here is you becoming authoritarian in your social life. Or perhaps you completely seclude yourself from everyone around you. Either way, this is no way to live in my opinion. I wish I could help you see another way.
I don’t know of any one solution to this dilemma, perhaps some suggestions from my heart will help. You will never convince someone through force or coercion so step number one is to forget about treating people this way. Many many people have experienced being bullied and we’ve all seen the effects of this so straight away, just forget about being a bully. I realize the temptation, however, know the results are not genuine. People will say a lot when under pressure just to fit in. I want real understanding not a belief brought about by some sort of abuse or brainwashing. I think one of the keys to do this is patients. If you have information about something and have experimented with it and know in your heart and mind that it’s true, then you need to stand strong with those ideas. People who disagree with you may or may not have valid points to make, so instead of reacting negatively to this, keep your ears open. You have to set the example in order to convince others, so take it upon yourself to become a very good listener. This avoids bullying in two ways, firstly, by listening to someone else’s ideas, you yourself are less likely to be a bully and in turn, you’re negating reasons for the other person to bully you. If confronted with a bully, do not cower in fear of them, but also, do not react aggressively or violently towards them. Instead, see it for the opportunity it is to improve yourself and perhaps improve them along with you. Results are what you put into any given situation or dilemma. Ignoring reality and blaming others isn’t going to do one solitary bit of good for you or anyone else around you. This is merely a suggestion to everyone to learn how to put aside petty disagreements and work a lot harder towards real solutions that work in the real world.
In closing this article, I just want to point out that I believe humanity is wonderful. I have a very optimistic outlook when I think about the future and it’s because so many wonderful people have taken it upon themselves to live and be who they are. These people inspire me to grow and learn and become a better human being. I have a girlfriend, who for the life of me, would not be with me if I hadn’t chosen the life I’ve chosen to live. She’s not into all of these things like I am, but that does not make her the type of person with her head down, lights out, and door locked. I sometimes try to see the world through her eyes and I have to tell you, it’s amazing to ponder. In the end, it’s not about whether or not she agree’s with me on everything or listens to the same information I listen to. It doesn’t matter if she can’t stand some of the music I love or some of the things I say every day. What matters is, she is who she is and she lives that way every single day. She communicates what she see’s and feel’s with me and it helps me grow into a better person. I only hope I provide the same kind of experience for her in turn because to me, she’s worth every drop of blood I have. She keeps her head on a swivel and learns something new every single day, things I could really care less about, until she shows me how important it really is. This is what I’m talking about, people from vastly different perspectives can learn, grown, and achieve with one another simply by being open to new ideas and suggestions. That to me, is vastly superior to purposefully living a lie. Not that those people are evil, but they sure are missing out and I for one wish to do something about it.
Thank you for reading! I am more than open to suggestions, criticism, and new ideas. Please comment below and let me know what you think!Scott D. Vogler