Every one of us has a huge number of different ideas and concepts, and all of them combined represent our reality. In that reality, we praise some things and disapprove of others. We value some things and dislike others, and that is also part of our reality. Each person can have a different reality, and almost always it is much different from what the true (real, objective) nature of reality is.
Our personal reality is often influenced by social reality, dictated by trends, the group of people we belong to, our religion, knowledge, nationality, and many other things.
In your mind, every single idea and perception of that idea is just a concept. Usually we attach certain properties to that concept. For instance, land, houses, diamonds, and cars are all concepts. For one person, they can mean many things—prestige, wealth, instruments, tools, emotional attachment, expressions of beauty or art, and many other things—but for other people, they may mean nothing of sort.
Ideas are like soldiers—they talk with one another, they hang out, and they cooperate. Also, they are very much like selfish genes ;*1 they like to multiply and spread into other minds, and not so rarely they engage in fight with each other in order to establish dominance.*2 Being like soldiers, they can even create armies of similar ideas in order to wage war against other groups of ideas. Throughout history, it has been recorded that some groups’ ideas were winning and some others losing these wars.
Ideas will chatter with other ideas about the things they like or don’t like. They will argue, and sometimes when they run out of arguments and realize they are “losing,” they will start mini wars inside your head. But they are social “beings” as well; they love to interact with other worlds (subjects) and other “sources” of ideas (heads). When they interact, sometimes they get reshaped and modified, and sometimes they get stronger and other times weaker, but sometimes regardless of the interaction they stay unchanged. Being rigid and incapable of taking any other shape, they start wars.
The battlefield for these wars is sometimes only your mind, but it can also be the space between two beings—the interaction channel between two “brains.”
There is something quite astonishing and very interesting about the war between ideas, and that is the point when one idea decides to take on a very different approach in order to fight opposing ideas. It is a point in which ideas decide to take a fight from the imaginary realm into the physical realm. It is the time when one idea realizes that it cannot win the war with supporting arguments, so it changes its strategy into goal of destroying the source of the opposing idea.
Imagine that you have two sides. Both sides have ideas about something, and these ideas are opposite. Let’s imagine that one side likes diamonds and thinks that diamonds are very valuable; therefore, it wants to obtain as many of them as possible. Now the other side has lots of these precious rocks under their burial grounds. The other side does not have any special opinion about diamonds, but it regards the burial ground as holy.
The side that wants diamonds approaches the other to negotiate—this is a time when ideas are exchanged in a friendly, conversational manner for mutual benefit. But soon after finding that they do not have common grounds, ideas will start arguing and throwing arguments at each other about why something is important or not , soon after this, exchange may escalate into threats from both sides. Now imagine this—if they do not find common ground, ideas will reach for one specific strategy, called “destroying the source of the opposing idea” in order to obtain object of one’s desire.
At this point, whoever has greater physical power will win the argument. Yes, I know—WTF!?
But it’s been like that throughout the centuries—kings and queens won their crowns not because they were the most righteous, divine, or kindest people in the land, but because they had more physical power in the physical world.
This strategy is not limited to humans; it is quite common among all sentient beings—any of them can go to war because of opposite ideas. Two dogs can fight to the death about the same bone, because they both have the idea that that particular bone should belong to them only. Although we do not know the language they speak, we can still observe these ideas fighting.
The unusual thing about this is that intelligent-sentient beings do this—and when they do, we honestly have to question how intelligent they really are.
Every single real war in our physical reality had some kind of idea behind it—the idea that led to that war.
One interesting fact is that the United States of America was involved in more than 20 wars after WWII.*3 It seems that our great American nation has allowed itself to be some kind of world bully. And while we’re on the topic of bullies, one more interesting fact, initially, the word “bully” meant “sweetheart” or “fine fellow” but deteriorated in the 17th century into “harasser of the weak.”*4 So, it seems we still think we are “sweethearts,” but everyone else according to the world public opinion polls think we are “harassers of the weak.” *5
Please ask yourself—how did we allow this to happen?
Instead of following the ideas of the great John F. Kennedy by being a nation with dreams, a nation pointing to infinite horizons of the universe, we as a nation became a dark reflection of what we could have become. How!?
The issue is with ideas, or rather the lack of them. The warmonger, animalistic (reptilian)*6 side of our brain often takes over and chooses war as the first and best approach.
What do you need? Tell me. Is it diamonds that you seek?
There is a diamond the size of the fricking planet out there in the universe—just go there and take it!*7
Or, you have an option of making perfect diamonds dirt-cheap with the proper technology. *8
In most of the cases, there is no need for war. We just have to think outside the box!
But no! We have convinced people that diamonds are expensive. We have to play that old silly game of Monopoly. Since I am already using them as an example, another fact—do you know why diamonds are really expensive? Maybe diamonds are expensive because they are rare? I thought the same thing, but they are not so rare after all; they are quite common in nature. It is just marketing. Someone in the ‘50s convinced the public that diamonds are a woman’s best friend and that they mean love, and by that they created a “niche” market where there was none.*9 People thought of diamonds as a symbol of love, and so the act of giving diamonds represents love.
Only love means love. There is nothing that can replace love—not even mountains of chocolate or serotonin injections, not any kind of rock or precious metal, nor any other gadget or object. And if you need love, you will first need to learn how to give love.
So many ideas about politics, governments, laws, wealth, and happiness … have been with us for so long that we rely on them without question. Maybe your parents told you that this is how our world works, as they learned it from their parents, and their parents learned from their parents and so on for an immense number of generations.
Try to think now—what are the things you firmly believe you have to do in your life?
Maybe we believe that wars are necessary in order to have peace in the world.
Or that we have to work hard in order to have a decent life.
Or that we have to pay taxes.
Or that we have to die.
What are the ideas you’re firmly attached to, that you're unwilling to let go of, even though you know they’re destroying your life?
There is always an alternative solution in the world of ideas—one that does not involve the strategy of destroying the source of the opposing idea.
Regardless of what type person you are and what kind of reality you have created in your mind, you have power over all of your ideas. You have the power to switch them on or off, in any given moment, in a split second. Regardless of how many properties you have attached to these ideas, you can nullify them instantly. While you are reading this, if you wanted, you could (you have the power to), for instance, decide that diamonds are not worth anything and that they have the same value as any other rock.
Isn’t that fantastic? Isn’t that fantastic to have that kind of power?
There is no “but”!
If you want, you could completely change the way you look at things in less than a second.
All these things you think are important may not be, and all these things you don’t notice and take for granted—maybe they are.
“Being happy or not is a matter of choice.” *10
Notes & References:
1. Selfish Genehttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Selfish_Gene
2. Gene and memehttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meme
3. List of wars involving the United Stateshttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_wars_involving_the_United_States
4. The Online Etymology Dictionary – Origin of the word “bully”http://etymonline.com/index.php?term=bully
5. America's Image in the Worldhttp://www.worldpublicopinion.org/pipa/articles/views_on_countriesregions_bt/326.php
6. Reptilian brainhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triune_brain
7. Diamond size of the Earthhttp://phenomena.nationalgeographic.com/2014/06/24/diamond-the-size-of-earth/
8. How to make a diamond from scratchhttp://www.bbc.com/future/story/20141106-the-man-who-makes-diamonds