- The following news article caught my eye since it deals with some of the issues raised in this entry: The bully wears heels
I concluded part 3 of this series by quoting from the movie: Morpheus: The Matrix is a System, Neo.
In part 4 of this series I will analyze THE SYSTEM, the ideology that supports this system that is antithetical to the spiritual, mental, and even physical health of people. Yet the very masses that are enslaved by the system fight tooth and nail to defend it. Why? The answer is that they are truly imprisoned in their minds, by an invisible power that cloaks their minds; the nature of this cloak as embodied in The System will be detailed in the next segment.
WHAT IS THE ‘SYSTEM’?
One of the definitions of the word ‘System’ is as follows:
1. The prevailing social order; the establishment.
In essence the SYSTEM is an unwritten code of conduct to which people adhere to voluntarily in society. It is not the same as the laws of the land. The ‘System’ places mental boundaries, like an invisible dog fence, around a person’s mind beyond which they dare not step. Even though there may be no legal compulsion or even religious requirement to conduct their lives in a certain manner, it is evident that most people in society ‘go with the flow’, they are much more comfortable following the beaten path rather than being pioneers and blazing their own trail. Fear is the dominant emotion of mankind motivating almost all their actions, the conduct of the majority is ruled by fear. The ‘System’ is based on fear, and it is through fear that people get enslaved in their minds without even realizing it or questioning it. And thus they become willing cogs in the machinery that is called the ‘System’. The ‘System’ has been symbolically represented by some as a ‘Beast’ and this is not too far from the truth. In the movie, Morpheus correctly identified the Matrix as a system, in this segment of the series I will present a Biblical viewpoint of what the ‘System’ is, and how it keeps people in bondage by making them constantly fearful. The ‘System’ has two main components, one physical and one mental that work in conjunction to keep people fearful, falsely believing in a purpose of their existence that has no basis in reality. These two components may be defined as:
1. ECONOMIC (the need to make a living, and therefore to compete)
2. SOCIAL (the need to keep up with the Joneses, peer pressure)
Their economic condition defines the purpose of life for most of mankind. This fact has been addressed in previous articles such as the recent one I wrote titled Money Money Money... Since the majority of people on the planet believe that Life means the Body, their entire lifetime becomes a rat race devoted to the accumulation of money that they spend to acquire goods such as houses, cars, clothes, and other things that are useful only for the body and provide no benefit to the soul or the spirit. It is fear that drives people to expend all the days of their life in pursuit of material things that may benefit the body but at the expense of ‘peace of mind’, their days are filled with anxiety, first of all thinking about how to make money, and when they have made it, how to hang on to it. The fear that drives them is that lack of money means lack of life. Therefore they do all that they can to ‘Get Ahead’! But what does it mean to ‘Get Ahead’? To get ahead simply means to leave someone else behind, by definition getting ahead means that you are in a race, and that race is the rat race where a person is always looking at who is ahead of them, and in the rear view mirror to see who is behind them. Such a vision leaves no room for introspection, for pondering one’s existence, for seeking value in life rather than seeking life in things. Constantly looking at others breeds jealousy and envy, makes one mean – spirited, narrow – minded, selfish and egotistical.
ECONOMICS 101: The cult of Hyper – Competition
People do not become this way by accident but are programmed and conditioned to be thus from a very early age. The cult of Hyper – Competition, of measuring yourself against others, to show yourself better by putting someone else down, is bred into children from a very early age. The following examples of competition among children as young as three years old illustrates the point that a belief system, an ideology is created for them in their formative years that will dictate their personality for the rest of their lives, at least in the majority of cases. As these news articles prove, kids are pushed to prove themselves better than others from ages as young as two and three. Some kids are pushed beyond their limits leading them to take their own lives. And for what purpose? Just so that they will be qualified to earn more money than their neighbour, just so that they can have a meaningless title, be looked upon in society as someone of importance! The following articles report on competition faced by Pre – School children in India and elsewhere, children as young as three years old. Some articles also report on the epidemic of student suicides in India, China and other countries because of perceived failure in meeting the expectations of parents and teachers.
Pre- school competition: News article from The Hindu newspaper / “The reason for interaction with Principals is because many feel that the present system of admissions is traumatic for children. It becomes impossible for children of three years to seek admission to school. There are incidents of children stammering due to stress. When a child witnesses the competitive environment in school he/she is traumatised,” he added. Not only is it unjust to the child but parents also go through a great deal of stress and pressure.”
My question here would be why are parents so stressed out and feel pressured if their three year old does not get into the right school? Is it not because they value their own child only in terms of material gain? The excuse is that parents only want what’s best for the child. I do not believe putting a three year old through the pressure cooker of competition is best for the child. I would go further and say that the child is being abused rather than loved by the parents, that the child will be scarred for life even though he may turn out to be very successful according to worldly standards.
Washington Times article on Pre School competition: “The demand for better education created a free-for-all among private schools, which began soliciting hefty contributions — or outright bribes — from applicants, rejecting parents based on their professions and even interviewing prospective 3-year-old students to see if they were worthy of a coveted space.”
This problem is not limited to India but is a global one especially in Asian countries where ‘Status’ is everything and this includes things such as which school their child attends. In China, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, and in other countries children are pushed beyond their limits to make them competitive. This website outlines the story in Japan. More than just a mental cost, thousands of children pay with their lives not being able to handle the extreme pressure of academic performance placed upon them by sociopath parents who should be charged with murder in such cases. Here’s a quote from It’s India Time newspaper of March 17, 2008: “Almost 6000 Indian students killed themselves in 2006. That’s almost a 35% jump from 2 years before. Board exams, various entrance tests, professional school tests, even high school monthly exams are creating a spate of suicides in India’s student population, an age group that one would normally associate with potential and promise. Wave of suicide sweeps China’s graduate class is the headline from The Telegraph UK newspaper of July 25, 2009.
What’s wrong with our society, the whole world, not just any one nation that the leading cause of death among young people under 25 is suicide? What drives them to such despair that they take their own lives? Is that high paying job or the title of ‘Doctor’ or ‘Lawyer’ really worth their lives? So are they going to be any less human if their occupation is a bus – driver or a garbage collector? Since when did one’s worth as a human being become connected to the job that they do to earn some money? Tragically that is the way it has been for many thousands of years now, people have been conditioned to value life in terms of money not to value just the miracle of being alive. As the above stories prove children are programmed almost from birth to COMPETE, to get ahead, to become #1, be better than the kid next door, and therefore kids learn to value themselves only in comparison to others, not by looking within their own selves. Children are taught to compete from age three onwards, to prove themselves better than the next child; such children can only become adults that value themselves in comparison to others. They are taught to develop the “Killer Instinct”, to go for the jugular, to do whatever it takes to get ahead. And this is exactly what they do as adults to get ahead, to climb up the corporate ladder; they trample everyone else beneath them, and try their best to pull down those above them.
Thus they find themselves competing all their lives, against their own siblings, against their friends, and against their co – workers. This competition is not an official one like the Super Bowl but rather it is a psychological one, a mental one played out only in the minds of the person who has been thus conditioned, he is always in a competition even when there are no other competitors in the field. Unlike an official competition like Wimbledon, there is no end to this competition; if his friends gets a Mercedes, he has to get a bigger Mercedes, if his brother buys a 4 bedroom house, he has to have a 5 bedroom house, if his sister sends her children to a private school, his kids have to go to private school and on and on it goes like a recurring nightmare from which one never wakes up.
Such competition is not limited to the academic or work fields only; it is very much a part of sports. From a very early age, children in organized sports like hockey, baseball, and football are taught that winning is everything. Parents push their children harder than in an army boot camp so that they can be ‘winners’. For every winner there has to be a loser, so the winner feels himself to be superior because someone has been made to feel inferior. I have seen parents go ballistic on their children setting unrealistic standards of performance for them and in the view of many critics scarring them for life. Here’s a quote from an article on this problem that is big enough to have qualified as a cover story for Time magazine in an article title ‘Inside the crazy culture of Kids Sports’,: “More common is the low-voltage ugliness of parents who just don't know when to let up, or shut up... Military police were called in to stop a parents' brawl at a "tinymite" football game in Repton, Ala., last October... parents from the opposing team who were overheard telling their kids, "If you're going to get a penalty, really hurt someone." “Infected by the crass world of pro sports and by out-of-control adults, youth sports had become a "hotbed of chaos, violence, and mean-spiritedness," announced the National Summit on Revising Community Standards in Children's Sports in 2002.”
Kids have to compete to get into Pre – School, then the right Elementary School, the right Middle School, the right High School, the right College, the right University. Then they compete to get the right job, to get the promotion, to get the perks etc. etc. etc. And what is the reward for winning all these competitions – MONEY! Show me one place where people are competing to help others with little or no pay, not just some volunteering so it looks good on a résumé but because they choose that way of living out of love for their fellow man. Even so – called ‘Charitable’ organizations exist more to provide a lavish lifestyle for the few administrators rather than the billions of poor people that they are supposedly helping. The recent Haiti earthquake has raised more than $2 billion dollars but all that money ain’t going to the Haitians, it would be a safe bet most of it won’t get to the Haitians. The Haitians themselves understand the hypocrisy of raising money on their behalf that they doubt will benefit them much, if at all as reported in this story: “In the past few days, someone scrawled graffiti declaring "Down with NGO thieves" along the cracked walls that line the road between Port-au-Prince's international airport, the temporary government headquarters, and a U.N. base.” Given the fact that human beings are trained from birth to look out for themselves, it should not surprise anyone that they will take whenever they can, from whomever they can.
Whether in the field of academics or sports, the whole concept of having to prove yourself better than others in order to gauge your value is nothing more than a variation of the law of the jungle, of the survival of the fittest. Because winning is everything, it becomes acceptable to win at all costs, to take as much as possible for yourself even if it means leaving nothing for others. Is that not the reality of our world? Even in everyday conversation, for example between co – workers, more often than not the conversation will be about this person or that and how bad they are, how many uplifting conversations do you hear at home or work? Everyone seems to be busy trying to show someone up, so that they can make themselves look better. ‘Rivalry’ which really means enmity seems to describe the human condition better than any other word. Siblings are rivals, even friends are rivals, sports teams are rivals, cities are rivals, countries are rivals, everyone seems to be at rivalry with someone or the other. The media even promotes concepts such as ‘friendly rivalry’, which is an oxymoron if I ever heard one. Read a newspaper or magazine; watch TV programs or movies or sports or business or politics, and what do you see? You see a jungle filled with beasts devouring and ready to devour each other! The real world is worse than any soap opera, as a matter of fact soap operas are based on real life, truth is stranger than fiction, and in the case of man we can say that truth is far more vicious than fiction.
The law of the jungle operates in the human heart and it is evidenced by the condition of the world we live in; a world of haves and have nots. The ‘System’ ultimately is the system of commerce that rules the lives of people. The ‘System’ is not something tangible such as the need to have a job to provide the necessities of life but rather the BELIEF that the very purpose of life is to make a living even if it kills you. How many people do you know that wake up in the morning with thankful hearts just because they are alive, and they value life regardless of their material worth? I personally can count on one hand the number of such people that I know, and I still have a few fingers leftover. Few people realize that the system of commerce is a carefully crafted Matrix designed to keep people so occupied in meaningless occupations that the days of their lives are over before they know it. Think of a person living two hundred years ago who was thus driven to be successful, to be somebody, to make a lot of money in which he may or may not have succeeded. Does it really matter today how much money he made, did he take any of it with him? Neither will it matter for those who are killing themselves trying to get rich today, a hundred years from now, even their name will be nowhere found except perhaps on their grave.
The lure of Money, for which people live and die, for which nations annihilate each other, who devised this monetary system that breeds such selfishness and self – centeredness that a person’s entire Universe becomes their spouse, two kids and the family dog, and let the rest of humanity be damned? People talk big about all of us being one, that all men are equal and other high sounding philosophies about the brotherhood of man, but sadly they are just empty words. If people truly believed such philosophies, they would work towards devising a new system that would be truly egalitarian, that would ensure an equal distribution of resources between all mankind; hey we are all brothers after all aren’t we? The truth however is that even blood brothers kill each other for money, so it is too much to expect that they would be willing to share with someone in another part of the world that they are not even aware exists! The ‘System’ as embodied in the system of commerce is neither a human invention nor is it administered by human powers. As the Matrix in the movie was a non – human creation, so too is the Money Matrix an other worldly invention.
· Ezekiel 28 v 15: Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee. 16. By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned: therefore I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God: and I will destroy thee, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire.
The above passage from the book of the prophet Ezekiel gives an account of the origin of evil, and of the ‘Mercantile’ system that was the root cause of violence in that world now long gone, and which is presently firmly enshrined in our present day world. The subject of the origins of money, and of evil is beyond the scope of this series but I hope it will become obvious to readers that Money rules life on earth; and the reason people are so easily entranced by its hypnotic power is because there really are hidden powers that hypnotize people with the charm of money. The ‘System’ traps people because they give mental ascent to the idea that they need to make a living, to earn money in order to survive. Once this false belief is embedded in their psyche it becomes near impossible for them to break free from this perception. Then they become willing slaves to the ‘System’, and even fight to defend it. As previously written in this article this state of mind does not arise from within a person, as a matter of fact kids are taught not to look at anything within, only at external things that will benefit them materially, the reason for which they are pushed to ruthlessly compete with each other.
It is this ‘Material World’ mindset that becomes the prison for their minds. Like the song they become ‘material girls’, and ‘material boys’, living just to accumulate meaningless trinkets that they rarely appreciate or enjoy. When people look for meaning in lifeless things such as houses or automobiles or fine wines, they themselves end up becoming lifeless even while their bodies are living and breathing. This belief system, this ideology of the money being the purpose of life has been crafted by the god of this world, Satan, and it is energetically promoted 24/7 by all worldly systems that fall under the umbrella of The Monetary System. These systems include the media, education, business, entertainment, sports, even religion. The indoctrination is never ending and is enforced by one’s own peers. Peer pressure to not be different is a subtle tool of Satan that keeps people voluntarily enslaved, too afraid to do anything different for fear of what people will say! There are spirit energies that are constantly at work trying to prevent you from even thinking outside of the box. It is not within man’s power to break free from these ‘supernatural’ forces that hold his mind in a vice like grip, only God can free a mind and that through faith in His only begotten Son Jesus Christ.
· Morpheus: The Matrix is everywhere. It is all around us. Even now, in this very room. You can see it when you look out your window, or when you turn on your television. You can feel it when you go to work, when you go to church, when you pay your taxes. It is the world that has been pulled over your eyes to blind you from the truth.
In the next segment of this series I will detail the all pervasive nature of this Matrix, of this ideology that shrouds people’s minds anywhere and everywhere, how it originated and why it exists.