“Lie down, then, on the soft couch which the analyst provides, and try to think up something different. The analyst has endless time and patience; every minute you detain him means money in his pocket. He is like God, in a sense — the God of your own creation. Whether you whine, howl, beg, weep, implore, cajole, pray or curse — he listens. He is just a big ear minus a sympathetic nervous system. He is impervious to anything but truth. If you think it pays to fool him then fool him. Who will be the loser? If you think he can help you, and not yourself, then stick to him until you rot. He has nothing to lose.” From: Henry Miller, Sexus.
Imagine the following scenario. You are told to believe some statement x which you know for certain is false. (For now, don’t question how exactly you know statement x is false.) This is not an easy task to do. Firstly, why should you believe this, if you know it is false? Secondly, you might question the motives behind the person who asked you to believe this false statement. Thirdly, you might question his or her own belief in this statement, does he or she know that it is false? If so, our second question, what is the motives in promoting this false belief? Fourthly, what is the implications for me and others if I accept this statement which I know for certain is false? Fifthly, and lastly, would someone from the outside be able to judge my believing this false statement as being what it is, namely, me knowingly believing a false statement?
Imagine the following similar situation. You are told to believe some statement x which you then believe without questioning it. You do not know truth or false worthiness of the statement. You also do not do anything in confirming or negating the statements truthfulness or falsity.
Compare the two cases. In the first case there is extra information that you know that statement x is false. Included are some questions and implications. In the second case there are none of these. There is a kind of indifference to the statement and its truth or false worthiness. In which case would there be a blameworthiness if statement x is believed? One would think in the second case, because there you did not “do your part” in inquiring if statement x is true or false.
Now think of a third case, somewhere in the middle of the first two scenarios. You are told to believe statement x but for some reason you believe it even though one might make the valid claim that you know it cannot be “right”. Note I am not making questioning the truth or false worthiness of the statement in this scenario, merely that one might know “intuitively” it might not be “right”. Might we add the title of this post here: you are told the biggest lie you’ve been told, and you believed it without any questions.
Tell Them Lies to Keep Them Stupid
The title of this section might be strongly worded, but for a moment think of the following scenario. If you keep someone, or a whole population, from educating him/herself, one can tell them anything and they might believe it without questioning it. (Some people have made this claim in relation to the ongoing poor education in rural areas in, for example, Africa.) One question one can ask is what is the implication of you or the population believing this lie? In a poor country one might say that the implication (or the desired outcome) would be that the people are easily manipulated for their votes or support.
Think of a different implication: financial. I started with a rather controversial quote. The mental health industry is constantly in the clutches of the “big pharma” problem, or in other words, people (read: doctors and psychologist) can easily fall victim to the lures of financial gain due to the prescription of medication.
Think of the following scenario. Tell the biggest lie ever, let the people believe it, and gain financially from it. Let me add some more “meat” to the scenario. Create an illness that only certain people can diagnose. The symptoms vary, but in essence anything can be seen as a symptom. This illness can only be cured via medication p which is only sold by company xyz. If someone questions the validity of this reasoning, declare it as a symptom of the illness and prescribe the medication. (Note: this is not a claim against the mental health industry, but the big pharmaceutical companies who push medication for patients who do not need it.)
Now imagine most of the people believing this lie.
Concluding the Lie
There are financial implications (read: gains) when everyone is told they need to buy something in order to be healthy. When no one questions this there are no end to this lie. One might think of this lie permeating most of our current (Western) civilization. One is often told you need this and that food on a daily basis to be healthy; one is often told to buy this and that product daily to be clean; one is often told to drink this medication on a daily basis to be healthy and sane of mind. But no one questions this way of thinking. Those who are, are sometimes silenced.
Now imagine the first scenario. You know statement x is false, but you are still told to believe it. Will you believe statement x? (Read: will you believe big pharmaceutical companies that you need their medication in order to be healthy and sane? Will you believe the big food industries that you need their mass-produced products to be healthy? Will you believe this way of thinking?)