Sunday, March 13, 2011

The End of Doublethink

I recently felt compelled to reread George Orwell's powerful novel 1984. Though it was a rather dark exercise, I was amazed at just how prophetic many parts of this 1949 novel have proven profoundly to be, particularly for the Old Earth, that fear-based, power-hungry world which is no longer sustainable.

Of course, Orwell didn't envision a happy ending, and I had forgotten the novel's raw brutality, not the sort of reading material I typically choose these days. I may speak of other themes in future blog entries, but what I want to focus most upon today is the concept of doublethink, described by Orwell as:

"The power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one's mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them"


Doublethink is not at all new, but it is alive and well in our modern world. And today I find myself reflecting upon the concept as I ponder the impact and "spin" of the growing nuclear emergency in Japan.

In so many parts of the world, people have been quelled into believing that nuclear power is somehow "safe", yet I believe we can assuredly say that never has this actually been the case. The problem with nuclear power, as is being so vividly demonstrated in Japan, is that it may appear to work well when it's working, but when it spectacularly fails, the effects are so very catastrophic that it becomes abundantly clear why playing with fire is precisely that: playing with fire ~ even when the fire is contained 99% of the time.

"Safe" and nuclear power as we know it are ultimately mutually exclusive terms, and we can only begin to speculate regarding what the effects of this emergency will be. The pundits on TV have many different tales to tell, from alarmist to obediently dismissive.

Corporate beneficiaries apparently fear what a setback this will be for the entire industry, particularly in the skittish U.S. (and rightfully so, many of us more and more strongly believe). So-called "cleaner" forms of energy aren't so clean if their failure carries catastrophic contamination.

I well recall multiple nuclear facilities I observed during my time in the Midwest, and one wonders if they could withstand an F5 tornado, every bit as possible in some parts of the country as a tsunami or earthquake in others.

Clever spin control is unconvincing if you do your homework. As I heard on one network earlier today, telling us that a CT scan contains more radiation than what has been released so far isn't exactly comforting if you have followed the latest news regarding CT scans, a procedure used much too frequently, putting people (and especially children) far more at risk than they realize. Indeed as a recent MSNBC story described, "getting two or three CT scans of the abdomen expose you to the same amount of radiation as people who lived near the atomic blast that ravaged Hiroshima in 1945 but survived".

Even in this very moment as I speak, CNN in the background is reporting a blast and "white smoke rising" from yet another reactor in Japan.

So how are we to respond? Is fear the answer? Or is it a catalyst?

Many of us in the spiritual community have known for quite some time that to awaken, one must often be jarred from sleep. We have experienced this intensely on a personal level. And perhaps now it's finally time for the worldwide slumber to dramatically come to a global end.

Our slumber is coming to an end when we realize unethical, profit-focused corporate interests (not to be confused with the growing contingent of enlightened business leaders) have been taking the utmost advantage of doublethink to introduce any number of wonderful "advances", while paternalistically downplaying the health effects on the general populace or the Earth.

Indeed this includes the medical community's cavalier use of CT scans, repeated mammograms and extraneous expensive tests and surgeries, designer pharmaceuticals with risks far exceeding benefits, and countless products and food items with risks we would blissfully prefer not to know.

Doublethink kept almost everyone asleep as those consumed with greed in our financial sector robbed us blind, even now strategizing loopholes and finding other ways to keep the profits rolling in at the expense of consumers.

And the very term "jobless recovery" is the epitome of doublethink in two words combined, but we would prefer not to know the implications of worldwide economic woes, rising food and fuel prices and growing income disparities in the U.S., beginning to resemble more of a third world Banana Republic than the Land of the American Dream. We would rather not hear that our infrastructure is crumbling and our educational system failing.

Doublethink leads us to ignore the countless deaths due to lack of health coverage and the countless deaths due to over-aggressive, greedy or negligent treatment, quite a contradictory quandary we would prefer not to ponder at all.

We drink doublethink when we daily ingest polluted drinking water, whether from the tap or the bottle, and blithely ingest chemical-laden and addictive food in contaminated containers.

Doublethink has diverted our attention from the lingering contamination and illness in the Gulf (reminding us that other forms of energy production have their perils too).

We have been trained every bit as effectively as H.G. Wells' blissfully ignorant Eloi, dutifully serving our masters every day, not even aware of the slaughter among us, with stunningly increasing cancer rates, not to mention other diseases, telling the tale.

Doublethink has been used by many religions for centuries, somehow making the concept of a loving, yet unspeakably violent God palatable to those who can't see through the contradiction. And the most horrifying type of doublethink was no doubt in play when witches were burned, slaves were kept or ethnic cleansing was speciously justified so many times in the darker parts of our history.

Doublethink keeps us inevitably at war, just like in 1984, mistakenly thinking the often vengeful killing of others will lead to safety and security, with huge corporate war machines financed by doublethink itself, bleeding the very foundations of society into utter oblivion.

Doublethink helps us justify the ever more intrusive security procedures claiming to preserve the very way of life they inevitably destroy.

Doublethink keeps the people disempowered, when in fact the power of the individual is grand beyond measure.

Doublethink is comfortable in a highly contradictory way, indeed invoking doublethink itself to justify the conveniences of our modern world, with selective amnesia whenever it suits us or our overseers. Is doublethink really worth the price?

The darkness of doublethink is coming to an end. That's what happens when the world is jolted awake from its slumber.

There are those who will say that I am engaging in doublethink when I say I happen to have faith that a New Earth is dawning, when I happen to see the signs all around us that the old familiar world is passing away, signs foretold time and time again and becoming more obvious by the day. Faith is another form of doublethink altogether.

There is only one course for us now. A Quantum Leap in Evolution. As the symbolism and eerie reality of 2012 draw ever closer, this is about to become abundantly clear on the planet. Our only path is an expansion in Consciousness so profound that we transcend the old, broken ways forever.

Call this yet another form of doublethink if you like, but more and more of us are in the process of making it happen, no more doublethink than Dawn contradicts the darkness of the night.