“One who controls the past controls the future, and who controls the present, controls the past”
I was reading George Orwell’s 1984, and his world surprisingly sounded familiar. One should have been startled reading it but no, I am not. I am thinking the way I am supposed to be. We live in a manufactured reality without inquiring about its very nature. Governments and the “deep state” as Noam Chomsky described, are practicing that “Reality Control” for decades.
A World where “thought” is an offense…
There is something exceptional about George Orwell. The way he prophecized the future is remarkable. While you wander in his dark realm of vicious subjugation, you feel that chill through your spine. In his dystopian world ideas like reality control, censorship, and extreme intolerance loom. Even the ability to think or feel has perished. Humans are merely machines working on what they are programmed to achieve. You are not even entitled to think, otherwise, you’d be spied on (by your children for instance) and someday be handed over to Thought Police. You’ll be accused of thought crime and vaporized eventually.
Let’s come back to the title of the post. It says If the present is in your control, nobody can do anything. You control the time. You control the information, alternatively the truth(distortion of reality). People under such dominion are bound, rather helpless to discern what’s happening around them. This ambiguity prevails making public a herd of sheep at the mercy of rather a merciless shepherd. Once in full power, they show past a glorious history and future as an emerging nation of great heroes with a booming economy. The deal is straightforward i.e; you just have to hold sway upon the present. And what’s the best way to achieve this goal with the nuance of the devil’s mind other than media( whether it’s social media or mass or entertainment media)? The media is arguably the single best agency to control over existing reality.
Are we “Human” enough?
With the birth of social media for example, as some may argue we have “liberty” to share or criticize an opinion. But for the players in government, which is a group of very powerful and influential people, social media is a godly weapon. Why there are so many intellectuals out there constantly warning about the menace of social media and mass media? What actually happens to the brain in case of excessive use of social media and how it exploits “dopamine loop” , the reward system of brain?if To reach an explicit retort we need to mull over a fundamental query that is very “human” in nature. The question is, what makes us human?
It is a Choice, plain and simple… Yes, this ability to choose, in fact, from the simplest of matters to very complex ones requiring a higher level of cognition, makes us human beings. Having “choice” in affairs of life is a practical illustration of that “liberty” for which people have fought battles and given their life. The courage to choose right over wrong has no significance if you don’t have a choice in the first place. I am not saying that life is rigid or black and white. Rather there are shades of the truth, tint that morality composes, and facades that evil charter.
This new god has the might to enslave the masses, to the level that it is the most worshiped on Earth. Average screen time in the latest statistics is found alarmingly around 6 and half hours. To maintain the hegemony of few over many, chatting applications and other entertainment platforms have historically usurped(in a way) the humanity of its very basic rights. Choices are being influenced institutionally and privacy is a myth manufactured with subtlety(e.g Edward Snowden).
Increasing manipulation via social media…
This dirty game of governing the mindset of a major bulk of society for a longer period with specific ulterior agenda gives rise to a breed of brainwashed population. A population making choices based on supposedly given “ Facts” hence, thought control. A population, as fierce as a grizzly bear, still twirls with the gesture of a fingertip. Your ideas aren’t yours, your emotions are ready to burst with some spicy headline on the TV. The sacred pen, which use to demonstrate eccentric tales of freedom and its mere presence would have given sleepless nights to tyrants, is already been auctioned somewhere. How easy nowadays to trigger and extract an extremely volatile animal out of anyone. You sell the truth, carefully measured, trimmed with sophistication, and when it’s in the best of your interests.
Political and religious polarisation (populism is the more appropriate term, in this context) in the world is at the pinnacle. People believe that Trump lost due to rigging elections even without any evidence but consider global warming propaganda. We live in a world where facts are easily distorted or fictionalized.
This is an age of information explosion and so many naive don’t know what to do with that information. Truth is being altered very systematically public opinion is influenced to have the desired outcome. People working on changing the very definition of right and wrong. Morals are being old-schooled while modernity is being sold under the umbrella of “freedom ”. Responsibilities are blown into thin air like junkies smoke off weed. Humans have fought battles to get their “right to choose” back. That is indeed freedom. But here comes a million-dollar question. If morals are renounced, responsibilities are nominated as chains holding us back and fact or fiction can’t be differentiated, then what is called Freedom in modern society?
Freedom I demand …
Freedom is something sublime yet awkwardly ambiguous concept. Aristocrats and military Generals won their dictatorship through enchanting slogans to snatch “ freedom” from then-called “corrupt politicians”, yet they enslaved and plundered humanity of its rights, riches, and free will. History is full of stories about quests people has accomplished in the past to win their freedom. This struggle looks like perpetuating itself. It’s like every time Hercules swings his sword and decapitates a hydra, a new head emerges.
Why fight if cannot win…
In human history, there are only a few instants when the battle for human freedom and justice is drawn to victory in the end. On most occasions, such uprisings appeared to be lost cause and such people(or freedom fighters) met their “death with honor” at last. But somehow this battle confronted the oppression in its own way. It never lets “Big Brother” breathe without anguish. Somehow this constant outrage( regardless of its magnitude) maintains ultimately the balance between yin and yang.
Choose to stand against the blizzard …
We choose to fight rather being complicit. That’s what freedom is meant to be. We have to battle at this front till the last man stands. Tyrants come and go so do the freedom fighters. This is like untangling human society out of its fallacies, generation by generation. I won’t spoil the tale that unfolds in 1984, in the world of George Orwell(you have to read it for that). But one thing is clear, we have to retrace the course we have taken. We started this journey to find “human” and to rescue human from humans. This journey or sacred and trusted pilgrimage continues even if we are ripped off our lives on the way. Even we were many when we started and reduced to a few.
To the future or past, to the freedom …
History stands witness that many times few truthful stood up against many. To carry on this road we have to find ourselves first. On this expedition, one has to traverse through oneself. Every battle for freedom begins with resuscitating the consciousness( the human inside you). Remember lads, question the nature of your reality. You’ll finally get to the center of the maze as described in Westworld.
This blabbering of my weary mind began with the mention of George Orwell’s 1984, hear him out one more time. It’s the melody of an unbound soul, yet imprisoned somewhere in time.
“To the future or to the past, to a time when thought is free, when men are different from one another and do not live alone—to a time when truth exists and what is done cannot be undone: From the age of uniformity, from the age of solitude, from the age of Big Brother, from the age of doublethink—greetings!”
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