With the industrial revolution, industry owners found that
factory workers would work only as many days of the week as they
Bosses were unhappy
about this because they needed a reliable workforce to meet
their targets. The industry owners came up with
the idea of schooling.
This made sure that
the workforce had the necessary skills to work, such as literacy
and numeracy, but more importantly, it trained people to conform
to a full working week.
At school, students
were taught to learn the rules and study what their betters told
them was true.
They were taught not
to question or have any new or creative ideas of their own. Most
importantly, for the business owners, they were taught to turn
up on time every day.
six days a week became a sign of 'being normal.'
Religions have also played
their part in brainwashing us.
Notions such as
the protestant work ethic, made people feel that they must
work hard to be guaranteed a place in heaven.
Most of us don't
actually believe this anymore, but it's an idea that lingers in
our mindset nonetheless. This is why we sometimes feel 'guilty'
if we take time off to rest or enjoy ourselves.
We have been
pressured to be busy and productive at all times in order to fit
the idea of 'being normal.'
Where religion is losing its influence,
the media and advertising
industries have been quick to step in to fill the gap.
Have you ever
wondered why so many media stories are negative? It's to keep us
living in fear... People who are frightened, of losing
their jobs, or homes, or being attacked by others, are more
likely to stick to the rules.
plays on our fears and creates unrealistic images of how we
should look, and what we should do with our lives to
keep us spending money.
Even science has manipulated our thinking, guiding us to believe
that we live in a material world with no numinosity or spirit.
We have been taught that the universe is like a machine
or a clockwork model that runs according to certain laws.
scientists understand that
the universe does not resemble
a clockwork model at all, but more of an evolving organism,
again this idea has stuck.
We feel disconnected
from spirit and from the earth.
Admitting to a belief
in anything more than the materialistic world can make us seem
Society then rewards this kind of behavior with money
We have become like
trained monkeys doing tricks for rewards and fearing
punishment for breaking the rules. Living this way is seen as a
sign of success.
However, for those
who have different ideas, who are sensitive, creative,
imaginative and not driven by material rewards, this society
does not work so well.
This can lead to
depression and self-doubt, even self-loathing and suicide. All
because the people in charge want to ensure the money
keeps flowing into their big businesses and bank accounts.
So how can we break free of this idea of 'being normal' and live
a life that is more conducive to our happiness as individual,
creative, compassionate human beings?
We begin to break free of these bonds of conditioning the minute
we begin to understand them.
If, after watching a
commercial for hair care products or anti-aging cream, we notice
that we begin to worry about how we look, we can learn to think
We can turn away from
the fear of not being attractive enough or young
enough and begin to look for stories that tell a better truth
We can begin to honor
the wisdom of the older people in our society or begin to look
more deeply at who benefits from our fears and
this can help us to break free.
We can seek healing
voices rather than those of hatred and despair.
Self-belief begins when we value our own opinions.
We can stop
looking at news stories to tell us how to think and
begin to trust our instincts.
Then, we can
learn what makes us happy and fulfilled rather than what
society says should make us feel good.
We can build
on our creative skills, start a side project or pick up
remember what we used to love when we were children
before our conditioning got too strong.
We can begin
to value ourselves for more than the financial
contribution we make to society.
And we can
be proud of our efforts to help others, be
compassionate and creative or help to safeguard our
By finding a tribe of like-minded people, we will find
support in strengthening our understanding and self-belief.
There are plenty of
people out there who feel like they don't fit in. There are
entrepreneurs who care about people and the planet, homesteaders
who want to live a more natural life, artists, and healers who
have the drive to make the world a better place.
We can find these
people in the real world or online. We can choose to join a
choir or a green project or have lessons in pottery or carpentry
When we follow
our instincts and desires they lead us to our purpose,
but they also lead us to the people we need to be around to be
healthy and happy.
We must be aware of those who are close to us that fear for us
When our loved ones
try to guide us back to conforming and fitting the mold, they
may do so with our best interests at heart or they may do so
because our changes are making them confront their own lives and
they are not ready to do that yet.
Either way, we have
to continue to follow our path.
'There is nothing
enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel
insecure around you.'