Doubt is the beginning of wisdom.
Other terms to refer to Social Conditioning include Social Engineering, Herd Mentality and Cultural Conditioning.
Mob Mentality, while seemingly related, is different in that is refers to behavior of people in large groups brought together for a single event and purpose, such as with protests and demonstrations. It describes how people will do things in a large group that they would never do as an individual.
Think of Social Conditioning as being “domesticated” by the thoughts and beliefs of others.
Read that again and let it sink in. Domesticated – as in sheep and cattle.
For most of us, it has become a habit to have others tell us what to think and how to behave. We don’t think for ourselves — instead, we let others do it for us and take responsibility for our lives. Not surprisingly, we are intellectually weak and have lost control over our actions.
It seems that we allow others to dictate us how to live because we don’t want to take the burden of responsibility on our shoulders — so we throw it on them.
If you want to escape the matrix of social conditioning and reclaim your freedom, you need to stop letting others control you like a mindless automaton and instead start being responsible for your actions. This might be a difficult thing to do, yet it’s the only way to choose your own path in life.
If so, then move on with the collective herd. Let others shape your mind as they see fit. Let them do your thinking. Let them trigger your emotions to react the way they desire. Fit in. Get along. Conform. Follow the herd’s desires. Don’t question. Refuse to think for yourself. Be complacent.
For those of you who are repulsed by this choice, you have another option: Independent Thinking
“To breath comfortably, to feel free, to think better and to find the beauties of the unknown paths leave your herd!” – Mehmet Murat Ildan
Rebel against authority and accept responsibility for your life.
Can’t stress that enough.
By questioning your beliefs, rebelling against the herd and thinking for yourself, you’ll be able to free your mind from the constraints of blind conformity and dogmatic ideology
Seek truth, regardless of how arduous that might be.
A study in the Journal of Consumer Research found that we’re prone to be copycats – not original thinkers. When people didn’t have a strong opinion or knowledge about their choices, they simply mimicked others, regardless of whether the mimicked choices were right or wrong or even made any sense.
We’re programmed to be followers. We’re conditioned to follow the herd and popular opinion. We’re conditioned to be repulsed by and denigrate anything and anyone that’s different or rebels against the “norm.” Our Cognitive Dissonance keeps our minds in line with the accepted mindset of the masses.
As Pink Floyd would say, school conditions children to become “another brick in the wall”.
But the reality is that in most parts of the world school isn’t a place where critical thinking is stimulated — on the contrary, it is suppressed or simply ignored. Naturally, it atrophies and becomes weak, exactly like a muscle does when pressure isn’t exerted upon it.Another reason is that they find it threatening to their worldview.
Utilizing propaganda tactics through the mainstream media, turning us into mindless puppets.
Our social conditioning has turned us into mindless, obedient puppets.
Our self-concept is shaped by a lifetime of conditioning and cultural indoctrination. Everything we look at, think, feel and accept in life are shaped by a lifetime of cultural indoctrination. We don’t even pause to step back and examine our basic assumptions and beliefs in life. We’re not taught to question anything. Why do we believe what we believe? What basis in truth and reality actually support those cultural, indoctrinating beliefs and behaviors?
“You have to understand, most of these people are not ready to be unplugged. And many of them are so inured, so hopelessly dependent on the system, that they will fight to protect it.” – Morpheus, (movie: The Matrix)
Ramifications of Independent Thinking and Breaking From the Herd:
In order to release yourself from the prison of social conditioning, the first and most crucial thing you need to do is question any beliefs that you unconsciously took on from your parents, teachers, and culture. That’s because beliefs can bring all kinds of limitations in life, such us irrational fear and the sense of having to live according to what’s right for someone else but not for you.
No matter how much you might cherish a belief, ask yourself the following questions:
- -“Where did this belief come from?”
- -“Is it limiting myself in any way or is it elevating the quality of my life?”
- -“Is there any logical reason for holding it?”
- – “Did I reach to them using critical thinking, or did I just accept them as truth merely because I was indoctrinated from my early education?”
- -“What is the logical basis for holding these beliefs?”
- – “Are they serving my happiness or are they contributing to my suffering?”
Discard the confirmation biases, the cognitive dissonance, the groupthink, the partisan bullshit
Follow the path of the unsafe, independent thinker. Expose your ideas to the danger of controversy.
Speak your mind and fear less the label of ‘crackpot’ than the stigma of conformity.” Thomas John Watson
Standing alone in the midst of the herd isn’t an easy task. As an independent thinker, depending on how much you share with others, you may find yourself:
- Isolated – the herd will think you different, odd, unpleasant and keep their distance; you’re an outsider
- Pressured – the herd and its supporting tools/structure will continue pressure to conform to mass groupthink
- Labelled– you may be called names or regarded in certain derogatory terms (negative social label & stigma)
“The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.” – Friedrich Nietzsche
You can choose to be argumentative with an intention to change others’ beliefs and life assumptions – being an activist. This is your first reaction as you uncover knowledge and facts not known to others, and you want to shout them from the rooftop.
It took me quite some time to understand that you won’t change others’ minds due to their ingrained herd-mentality biases. They themselves have to truly want to uncover reality and change their beliefs.
Or you could keep your alternative views hidden from your social, work and family groups and not discuss with others at all – only sharing with people of like mind you happen to meet online or in person.
Or you could simply stand proud and confident, and only respond when others inquire, and then in a non-apologetic “teaching” manner. Then, let them react the way they will.
The Gay Science:
Being considered ‘crazy’ by those who are still victims of cultural conditioning is a compliment.” – Jason Hairston