Re: Changing people (was: Re: look out! long-haired gun loon!)

Holger Wagner (
Fri, 19 Dec 1997 20:20:04 +0100

Michael Butler wrote:
> On Thu, 18 Dec 1997, Wings of the Morning wrote:
> > do with guns. I think if we could change the way people think, there would be
> > a lot less reasons for guns to be produced anyways.
> I absolutely agree.
> But *how* to change the way people think?

A dream: take over all the media and any educational institution and
flood "society" with good information that makes them more critical.
More realistic: talk to as many people as you can. Doing that you can
1) make a few (very few) actually change the way the think
2) get better in achieving 1)
3) make up your own mind about the things you talk about
another possibility is writing articles, books, etc. (or creating
computer games) that contain certain messages. Let the critical
characters win, while the others fail.

I've been thinking about this a lot (unfortunately, I didn't get to read
a lot about it, yet). I believe that there are different "levels" to
reach people:
With some people, you can actually start a "philosophic" discussion.
Unfortunately, some people - even if they understand the concept - won't
change because they think that philosophy has nothing to do with real
life. Others simply aren't interested in that kind of conversation, so
either you tell them stories with a message (I recently found out that
most communication among friends is about their experiences, things that
happened to them recently - simply stress the "extropic aspects" in such
conversation), or you "live as a good example". It makes a great
difference, whether you tell people something, or if people ask you, why
you are successful and happy and such a nice person ;-)

Obviously, with these steps, you only reach a few people - but that's
way better than reaching no one at all. If we are lucky, some people
will have the idea of also spreading "good memes" which may result in a
snowball effect.

> To scare them? To lie to them? To tell them guns have demons in them that
> make you kill people when you're pissed off in traffic?

That's what (so-called) governments have been trying for millenia. It
does work for some people, but I rather live among critical people who
know why they're doing what (fear and misinformation are pretty unstable

> Or to tell the whole truth, and get people "evolved" (bad word:
> "post-evolved" might be better) to a point where violent acts aren't their
> first resort during a bad-hair day?
> I favor the latter. That means getting everyone rich and calm, AND not
> trying to screw each other. Including not lying to each other.

So far, I see the major problem in the addiction of some people to
maintain power, while others prefer being ruled to being
self-responsible. Those "power-addicts" would do anything just to keep
their power (including the use of violence), while some of those who are
ruled maybe develop aggression.

Obviously, those in power ("governments", media, enterprises) usually
won't try to get across messages who may result in self-responsible
people who are critical about everything because that would destroy any
centralized power. The only thing I believe I can do about this is
become rich and powerful myself and "do a part of the job" (and I would
never expect anybody else to do anything about it - if someone does, I'd
appreciate it).


| "That's the funny thing about memories, isn't it? We are not  |
| what we remember of ourselves, we are what people say we are. |
| They project upon us their convictions  -  we are nothing but |
| blank screens."      +$+      Trevor Goodchild in "Aeon Flux" | 
  "Best do it so"  -?-   \ |
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