There are so many things that can take place through exposing oneself to the mainstream media. And let’s face it, due to the power and influence that it has, it is more or less impossible to not be affected by it.
For some people, their whole meaning of life, what’s going on in the world and what they should do, is defined by it. And even if one does think that their perception of life is not shaped by it, there is inevitably going to be some area of their life that has been.
We are made to believe that we need things and that these things are vitally important to our happiness and wellbeing. And yet upon closer inspection, these so called ‘needs’ are actually manufactured wants and are creating a sense of lack and that we are missing something.
The Usual Approach
This can range from: an item of clothing, to make up, aftershave and perfume and to the latest gadget. There are also numerous other offerings and items to consume.
And while these things are often fairly neutral and unappealing per se, what create additional impact are the associations that are added. It is then not so much about what is being sold, but all that is being attached to what is being sold and therefore how one will feel through having it.
So this may be done through having people in the advert or promotional material that are society’s version of what is attractive. It could be that the people are happy, relaxed, popular or at peace with who they are.
As the need for approval and acceptance is often so high in people, this is bound to be a vital ingredient when it comes to creating interest in people. And if one is popular through possessing this, then that is often more than enough.
The challenge here is that we are not all the same. But what the media can do is tap into ones vulnerabilities and to areas where one feels insecure. Although we are all unique at a deeper level, on top of that can be all kinds of illusions. And these are typically the ego minds fears and do not relate to ones true self.
These can then cause one to be pulled in by what the media is offering and as so called solutions to their emotional unrest. And while they are offering solutions to these problems, they also have a hand in creating them.
It’s like a cycle that doesn’t end. As soon as one feels a sense of contentment, there is something else that needs to be consumed to maintain it. The idea is that one will feel happy by acquiring what the media is selling.
In the short term, this may well lead to a sense of fulfilment. Sometimes one will be able to have what the media is selling and sometimes they won’t. Perhaps it is due to one not looking a certain way, having a certain body or enough resources and so it will be impossible to feel happy based on the requirements.
Through becoming attached to the Medias views of life, one can then become depended on them. If one is happy or not will then depend on if they posses what the media is selling.
To be happy with one is and to accept oneself, regardless of how one compares to others, will likely be the last thing on one’s mind. This will inevitably work in the Medias favour, as once one feels unhappy and therefore experiences pain, they are then likely to create the cycle once more.
Here one will end up buying what is being offered as a way to regain their sense of happiness. Having people who are happy is not ideal when it comes to making money. Pain has to be created to cause people to spend money, as way to regulate their pain through consumption.
This is not to say that buying things is wrong or that one should go and live in a cave, away from the constant manipulation that is going on. Going from one extreme to another is seldom a success or necessary.
What is does demonstrate is the importance of thinking critically and questioning what is bombarding the senses. As this process has gone on for so long, it is often overlooked and has become normal. And this means that it can then become invisible to the senses.
And when this happens, one then gives up their personal power to something outside of themselves. The media has helped create the illusion that happiness is something that comes from consuming things.
But, if people are already vulnerable on the inside, it won’t take much work to attract them to this idea. So, it is clearly a two way relationship.
Oliver JR Cooper
Author, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.