Black Friday is a term which the media has created. It is ‘a day of bargains on the busiest shopping day of the year.’ Huge sales, massive discounts, hurry, deals, will end monday. All this language has a huge influence on those receiving it. Just check out the news story’s that were delivered yesterday and you will clearly see how people become effected and influenced by the media and consumerism.
George Gurdjieff says that; ‘Man is a machine and is completely controlled by external influences. All the people you see, all the people you know, all the people you may get to know, are machines, actual machines working solely under the power of external influences.’ Any of you who have seen any ‘Black Friday’ footage will be able to verify instantly that those individuals who partook of the retail madness were completely under some external influence, that being the media and the giant corporations who want their money.
The above paragraph may seem cynical and pessimistic but I assure you it’s not. Black Friday is an extreme example, a clear indication of what control the media has over those who allow it. I have spoken before about this and many are trying to help people see whats happening in the world today.
So where do we fit into all this? If you waited for a shop to open because of the huge sales, rushed in to grab something that you don’t really need and assaulted someone who tried to grab your stuff. Then you are under the influence of the media and Black Friday. If you have heard before that individuals are influenced by the world around them, by people, by planets and stars and many other variables then you are aware of the situation.
KNOW THYSELF is one of the simplest pieces of spiritual advice one can receive. If you don’t know that you are under the influence of the world around you then how can you do anything to remedy it. If you watch adverts on T.V and find yourself half dazed walking to the shop and buying something you don’t need, then you will struggle to do anything about it. But if after reading this you observe what happens if you watch a news programme with death and destruction on it. If you pay attention to how you feel after an advert inadvertently telling you that your not good enough because you don’t own their product, you will see what influence these impressions have on you.
One of Gurdjieff’s followers asks a very important questions in regards this subject, and one we can all learn from, especially someone who punched their fellow man for a cheap television:
‘Can a man stop being a machine?’ Gurdjieff’s response sheds a stunning light on our current situation.
‘It is possible to stop being a machine, but for that it is necessary first of all to know the machine. A machine, a real machine, does not know itself and cannot know itself. When a machine knows itself it is then no longer a machine, at least, not so much a machine as it was before. It already begins to be responsible for its actions.’
I would appreciate any comments you might have on this subject. Post them here on WordPress or alternatively on my Facebook page. Even if you disagree with the above or have some criticism I would love to hear your thoughts.