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A scandalous thought for the last post of the month. Turning off the TV forever.
I have just finished Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television by Jerry Mander which presents this radical idea, and I gotta tell you, it's one of the greatest books I have read in a long time. I have long believed that television is one of the key culprits in the demise of humanity and this book confirmed these beliefs and then some. Television distorts reality, screws around with your brain and can quite easily become a means of thought control. Scary stuff.
Here's a brief but very interesting synopsis of the conclusions found here. The link will take you to the Orthodox Christian Information Center, but the book itself is non-religious and written by a man born into the Jewish faith.
In my own personal musings I often wondered if people's unhappiness and general discontent with their daily lives was based on their comparisons on what television would have them believe a "happy" life really is. Real life is mundane, television life is not. It cannot be or you wouldn't watch. The sole job of advertisers is to sell you products, to make you believe that what you don't possess is the real reason you are unhappy. And, for whatever reason, we believe it. We have created a nightmare of a society based on consumerism and the constant arousal of a flickering television that jumps from one scene to the next creating what Mander calls "Artificial Unusualness". It's madness! Sheer absurdity! It is impossible to emulate the life advertisers and television programmers present to us as reality. I personally know of marriages that have fallen apart because either one or both spouses lived in this fantasy world and held insane expectations of what their lives "should be" which was never based on reality. Like I said, life is mundane, it does not move at the speed of television. We go through long periods of routine, something that television will not portray. I believe that routine is not bad, but actually ideal. If I am not focusing on material acquisitions or whether or not "my needs" are being met at every waking moment I can focus on other people, which surprise, surprise, is one of the primary messages of the Gospel of Christ. Sounds like television may be a type of Antichrist. Food for thought for sure.
So, as we are rapidly approaching Great Lent in the Orthodox Christian Church (one week from today to be exact!), maybe a 7 week kibosh on television watching is in order. Do you think you could do it? Or at least cut back? I know I will. I think I may have mentioned it before in another post, but I would rather live in reality than delusion. It should be obvious that television is a source of delusion that implants false ideas that we passively accept whether we realize it or not.
Read the book. Do it for yourself, your children, for the sake of the human race.
Wow, that was one hell of a rant...see you in March!