The Greatest Conspiracy
I’m not going to tell you that Coronavirus is a hoax. That would be too simple. If someone invented this concept in order to take over the world and reduce our freedoms, gradually creating the Orwellian world of 1984, and thousands of experts were in on the cover-up, risking their credibility and careers for some material gains, why would they be reporting such unimpressive numbers that make us question whether this is a big deal or not? If they were risking so much to finally pull the trigger on creating a police state, why wouldn’t they make up a much scarier disease?
I could show you a bunch of video clips of recently silenced critics of the establishment to scare you, saying our freedom of speech is being taken from us right before our eyes. I could juxtapose those clips with airplanes crashing into the world trade center or other devastating images that suggest they are related. But that would be too simple.
The Coronavirus has already changed the world, from the economy to our thinking. And while people go onto social media to fight the good fight for truth, we end up projecting a political dichotomy upon our friends which is not accurate. Our friends have split into many different positions.
Here is a list of the most prevalent factions I’ve seen online:
1. Those who believe Coronavirus is a hoax
2. Those who believe Coronavirus isn’t as dangerous as they say and the News Media is overhyping it for political reasons
3. Those who believe Coronavirus is dangerous but that quarantine is not worth the damage to our economy.
4. Those who believe Coronavirus is dangerous and that quarantine for as long as necessary is the only moral choice.
5. Those who believe Coronavirus is dangerous and that the only hope is a vaccine.
6. Those who believe Coronavirus is dangerous but solvable through alternative medicine and that mainstream medical culture is corrupt.
7. Those who believe Coronavirus is dangerous but being used to take away our freedoms.
8. Those who believe Coronavirus is dangerous but not for young people, so we should only quarantine seniors.
9. Those who believe Coronavirus is dangerous but nothing we do will make any difference in who it kills.
10. Those who believe Coronavirus is dangerous and should be used as the death sentence to Trump’s presidency.
11. Those who believe Coronavirus is dangerous and that we should trust our health officials, and that anyone not taking it seriously is a danger to us all.
One thing that is clear from months of quarantine and opinions flying around is that human beings are not particularly skilled at critical thinking. We think like birds soar in the sky: in formation. When we lose the group and fly solo, we may discover new territory, we may come up with a new idea, but only back in formation do we properly vet those ideas and come up with a cohesive argument to lead the flock in a different direction. And most of the time, we stay in a small sub-flock, parroting whatever has been said as if we know it is the truth.
The simple truth is that reality is complicated, and our minds are generally unequipped to handle it. We rely on unexamined concepts handed down to us from other people to understand how things work. We rely on our community to come up with a consensus as to what is real and what is not. The greatest conspiracy isn’t that we are sheep following the leader — that’s just human nature. The real conspiracy is that there is no leader. We are the blind following the blind.
Most of us have heard of the trilateral commission, the Bilderberg group, the Rockefellers, the Illuminati, secret groups of powerful people controlling the world, planning for a new world order. But if we’ve all heard of them, then they aren’t secrets. How competent are they if they can’t even keep their own secret meetings a secret? We could come up with all sorts of explanations to maintain this narrative that there are evil people manipulating us with puppet strings — it sounds a little bit like a dark God in a religion that believes in predetermination. It’s too simple. It smells of old-world religious brain-washing that we haven’t fully outgrown. No. The real conspiracy is that these organizations meet in plain daylight to discuss the future of the world. Is it a new world order they are planning, some grand power grab? They include a thousand people but no one is revealing their sinister plot for world domination? This doesn’t make sense.
There are many emotionally charged reasons to resent these organizations that didn’t invite us to participate. We could argue that it is because they are evil and don’t want us to know what they are up to, but then why aren’t they more secretive? Another explanation is that politicians, elected officials, bring a combative mentality of fighting for the agendas of the people they represent, like a lawyer. All we need to do is look at our own governments to recognize how ineffective that is at solving problems.
If you were going to start an organization to discuss and coordinate the human navigation of the complex problems of the world today, who would you invite? Perhaps political leaders, perhaps scientists or philosophers, historians, mathematicians… Maybe the wealthy elite who have real power and influence and could enact some changes without government approval? Good luck, but be sure to keep it quiet, because anyone not invited will be suspicious of your intentions.
While the popular narratives don’t hold up to scrutiny, I think our feelings around conspiracy theories are quite valid. We see them projected in our favorite movies like the Matrix. We can feel that we are on a treadmill living out meaningless lives and that real life is out there somewhere. We want the red pill to wake up. This is true. But we project the conspiracy upon people and into stories that don’t make a lot of sense. We blame Trump, or Anthony Fauci, or Bill Gates, or the Clintons, or some other character upon which we can project all the evil in the world. But the truth is never that simple.
Sure Trump is self-interested, lies, and manipulates to get what he wants. Anthony Fauci and Bill Gates may benefit financially from a vaccine. But to assume they are evil masterminds is comic-book thinking. They are human beings steeped in a culture that informs their worldviews. President Trump’s experience tells him that staying in the spotlight and bullying to get his way works, so he continues to do it. He doesn’t know better. How can he be an evil mastermind if he is also stupid? Fauci and Gates are steeped in a medical culture that views vaccines as the great saviors of modern science — they aren’t likely to notice solutions outside of that box.
It isn’t individuals that have betrayed us but the very fabric of our culture. The scaffolding that built our minds is twisted.
The unexamined concepts we hold up as truths have determined the direction of our thinking for our entire lives. Is the world getting better or worse? Is life suffering or joy? Do I belong or am I an outsider? These core ideologies were baked into us as children by our parents or our teachers who knew no better. The religious ideas we have around capitalism, socialism, fairness, and freedom bind and blind us from seeing reality as it is. The assumptions we make, the rapid leap to judgment on things we know little about — these cognitive traps are how we are automated. Waking up from that is the only way to claim freedom.
The real journey then is a spiritual one. Rather than stepping up to the pulpit to preach another theory of fear and deception while we ourselves are deceived, let’s go inside our minds and meditate, being mindful of our thought patterns, plucking up old unexamined ideologies we never consciously agreed to. If God is good, from where does evil originate? Is it evil or is that simply my judgment of nature? What if I chose to be curious, opening these concepts to see the ideas that compose them? Would that destroy my old world and take me into another? Is that not what taking the red pill means? The change you want to see in the world starts within you.