The Propensity to Believe

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We are Magical Beings in a scientific age.  Notwithstanding all the remarkable achievements of our species n terms of understanding and harnessing nature, we are born to magical thought and not to reason.

James E. Alcock

The real challenge of our age is to liberate ourselves from our own irrational tendencies to believe without questioning.  Belief in itself of course is not a bad thing because it helps us to survive in an uncertain world where it is impossible to have all data readily available to make reasonable decisions.  However, the more data becomes readily available and accessible the greater our responsibility to question the beliefs we hold.

In our age where science has made huge advances it is irresponsible to allow people to impose ideas from an age where superstition and irrational beliefs were science1commonplace. It is easier to understand inquisitors who tortured men and women in an effort to save their souls because all they knew was what they were taught from childhood on about a world-view where there is one supreme ruler who punishes unbelief with eternal damnation.  They were reasonable in their own world-view because they reasoned it is better for a person to be tortured here on earth where death acts as a redeemer given they accept the chance to repent than to have them suffer torment for all eternity in helinquisition1l.  The inquisitors were not evil but well meaning people whose only desire was to spare people from an eternal place where suffering will never stop.  They reasoned that if they let people taste a little bit of hell on earth they might repent and thus be made fit for heaven.

Today we recognise that this well-meaning attitude caused more harm than good and it hardened us in our resolve not to have religion mixed with politics.   In Islam we see a similar well-meaning attitude but with less compassion. The Islamic martyr  is not concerned to save unbelievers from a fiery hell, but rather to kill as many of them as possible  in an effort to rid the world of infidels through making himself a sacrifice whose reward will be unlimited sex with 72 virgins in a blissful paradise.   For a Moslem man the ability to have sex with a woman at any time whenever he wants appears to be the highest and most desirable good he can achieve.

In both worlds their acts are rational and reasonable according to their beliefs but completely irrational in the light of an enlightened world where we have science to explain our world and don’t rely any longer on myth alone.  Our propensity to believe blind-sides us and this is not only true in the context of religion.

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As humans we have an inborn drive to follow a leader and not to question them.  Those of us who do question leadership often are punished or sidelined.  We accept that as humans we’re not equal but always have to submit ourselves to a hierarchy of various authority levels. We tend not to take serious comments made by inferiors and mostly only act on instructions from above.  We call this the ordered way, the way things are.

Problems arise when our leaders don’t have the interest of their subjects at heart but see them only as pawns to be used to create benefits for themselves.  Governments often are themselves subject to forces outside their control like corporations which can dictate conditions to improve their profitability.  Wars are fought not to protect us against attacking enemies but to create revenues by forcing inferior countries to give up assets and allowing the invader to make installations like laying pipelines through their land to transport oil and gas for corporations or building bases for the military.  Thousands, sometimes millions, of lives are lost in the process for no other reason so that a few wealthy people can become even wealthier.

What allows leaders to get away with the rackets they do is by spinning wool over our eyes, by using the media to tell us what they want us to believe because they know that all humans are fundamentally inclined to believe rather than question.  People will always believe the lie if it is repeated often enough from trusted sources in TV, Radio and Newspapers.  Even when our eyes tell us that something is amiss we rather doubt our own eyes than believe that our leaders might deceive us to such a high degree.

The Kennedy assassination is one example where people witnessed multiple shots from different directions which indicated a conspiracy but the media consistently cooperated with the government to quench all questioning and hypnotised the viewers through repeated assurances into believing that there was only one shooter. In 9/11 again we have clear evidence that three buildings came down as a controlled demolition which can be clearly seen by anybody looking at the recorded evidence but because the media consistently repeats the same lies over and over again people begun to believe the official version of events and doubt their own eyes.  

With the Kennedy assassination many years later the verdict was challenged and eventually it was determined that the assassination was most likely a conspiracy.  However, instead of this making headlines it is still mostly ignored in the media.  The same will happen with 9/11.  Eventually the truth will come out but no media will cover it.  The reason for all this is because of a new religion in the making.  Today it’s not Christianity, Hinduism or Islam that will govern a nation but State Religion, the unquestionable belief in the Official Version of events.  All this is made possible because of humans propensity to believe.  

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