Literacy is a great invention for getting everyone to follow instructions. Jesus is illiterate and so were his/her disciples. Literacy and numeracy are Roman traits. Numerals were introduced by the Romans to numb us and dumb us and measure us.
I am doing less and less reading and writing and numbering, and I find myself feeling clearer headed, my mind is more stilled, and I feel closer to finding peace.
All modern day children must be trained in words and numbers, spelling and grammar and numbing, from young. Countries without education programmes must have them installed to help them develop. It is a well ingrained belief system in the Western world that reading and writing and numeracy is good for you and good for everyone. It’s GOD for you and GOD everyone.
The printing press was introduced to spread the word of GOD, via the Bible. It is a great way to program many people at once from one single source. It is a big improvement on a vicar preaching once a week in a church service. It’s progress. It’s development. It’s advance. It’s an upgrade.
But now there is an even bigger improvement than the printing press. The internet is an upgrade to a much faster more efficient way to program far larger numbers of people far more quickly, with identical information.
Information technology. You go on the internet to be in formed, don’t you ? The internet is a sort of Universal Church. Not just on Sundays, it’s all day every day, all religions and non religions too. Good for you. God for you. Keeps you informed and in touch with the world. One big world with a single power source.
The printing press sounds like Prince and Empress. The Royals and the Empire. Or maybe print and impress. Print and make an impression on minds, preferably young impressionable minds. Carve a set of instructions into many minds.
If you can read, you can follow instructions. Identical instructions to ones that everyone else is following all over the world. “Follow my instructions” says the teacher to the class of 4 year olds. And you can see that this is another one-to-many relationship between the one teacher and many pupils, which can spread the word so much more efficiently.
Children wear uniform to show that they are being made uniform. They are being made uniform by following the same set of instructions, and receiving the same set of information. They are being formed, printed and impressed. They keep their minds open ready to receive instructions.
In the beginning was the Word, the Word of God. I think his very first word was BEGIN. It’s the start of the GOD program.
A computer program starts with the word BEGIN. A computer program is a set of instructions, written in a language. The computer follows the instructions of the program. Just like a child follows the instructions of the teacher. If we follow instructions, then we are behaving like a computer.
If people want to know how to do something these days, they turn to books or the internet to find instructions. You just look it up. Which is like looking up. Looking up to the teacher or to the vicar, or to God. Look up to get your instructions.
Recipe books are a great example. They are just like computer programs. You start with a set of ingredients, or DATA, and then you follow the instructions that turn the ingredients, or data, into something else.
But there are plenty of other examples too… instructions on how to change your energy supplier, how to get the best deal on your holiday, what to do on saturday, how to cure cancer by following the instructions to Donate. How to make yourself happy. Follow the instructions of your SatNav to get from A to B. Maybe this blog post is a set of instructions on how to find peace of mind.
A computer language has a grammar like a human language. Pro grammar, see ? But really it is to programmar us with proper gander and proper grammar. Learn your grammar properly so you can follow the instructions.
If you read a page of writing, your eyes scan the page, left to right, return, left to right, return, over and over. We can do that at quite high speed. A computer does the same thing except faster, it scans the instructions and the data, and then follows the instructions. All us human computers are scanning in the data and instructions and loading up our minds with more and more instructions, telling us what to do.
The more you read the same thing, the more it stays impressed and printed into your memory. Similarly if you write the same thing over and over. That is why kids write lines at school as a punishment for not following instructions… “I must follow instructions I must follow instructions I must follow instructions”. The Romans like lines, straight lines.
It’s not just our minds, I found myself dizzy one day after too much high speed reading. I noticed that my eyes were scanning over and over again from left to right at high speed, even though I was not reading anything any more ! My eyes had gone into some sort of automatic behaviour. It gave the effect of spinning the room, and so I could not stand upright. I now stop reading well before that stage.
Have you noticed people’s rapid eye movements when sitting on a train looking out the window ? It gives me a headache to keep using my eyes in that left to right scanning sort of way.
An author is a writer who acts like God, with a God like AUTHORity. God is a higher authority that we look up to. The author is right, the authorities are right. If it is written then it is write and right. It has an air of authority. The author has a one-to-many relationship with the readers, like a teacher to a pupil, like a vicar to his flock, like God to the entire human race. And like a blogger to her followers (one of the reasons why I am weaning myself off blogging).
Have you noticed how much paperwork and wordiness is used by the authorities ? They love it. They couldn’t exist without it. Imagine if the authorities had to go round talking to people individually on a one-to-one basis to try and control them, they wouldn’t have the resources would they ? It maybe authoritative and authoritarian, but it is not very personal, is it ? And maybe eventually the lack of personal touch will win through, and people will all start to seek something more human away from authority, and away from screens and instructions.
If someone in authority keeps getting promoted to higher and higher positions of authority, they lose the common touch. They become further and further removed from one-to-one relationships, and more accustomed to one-to-many broadcasting. God is out of touch with the common people. He has been over promoted to a very high position of authority. People in high authority are very lonely, you can see why. Maybe even God would like to come back down to Earth sometimes.
I have noticed that when I am reading a book, by an authoritative author, it is as if I am having a relationship with the book like a companion. I even take it to bed with me. Except that it is not a human being, it is always conveniently there for me, and I can pick it up and put it down when I choose, or take it with me in my bag. I get very involved with what I am reading and it influences how I interpret things for the duration of my relationship with the book. Imagine what power you would have to get everyone reading the same book all at once! The Bible, perhaps. The daily newspapers. Or maybe something a bit more up to date, fit for 21st century purpose, how about the internet ?
It seems a bit sad to me that people have relationships with books and smartphones and screens and words and numbers, rather than with people, animals, plants or the Earth. Me included.
A book at bedtime is a common activity, to comfort yourself with a book. Parents are encouraged to read to their child at bedtime as part of their parenting program instructions. Eventually the child learns to go to sleep with the comfort of an inanimate book instead of the real warmth of a human being. Originally this book would have been the Bible containing God’s instructions. Whatever you read or do before you go to sleep is going to program, impress, print, and inform your night time experiences. The sleep time has the potential for nightmares, or for healing, or for answers.
Reading a book is considered a healthy thing, but it is just the previous version of the internet. When the printing press first came in and people marvelled at it, there must have many dissenters that could see what was happening. There must have been protests when children were taken away from families into compulsory education, with the older folk noticing what was happening to the young, how they were getting wrapped up in their reading and writing and their numbing numbers.
It’s divisive. Nowadays we see people all separated by their attention to screens and the wires stuck in their ears. But reading a book is antisocial too. It’s another sort of barrier. I think we are all being divided by words. Written language is a barrier.
The closest human relationship of all is the relationship of mother and baby, and no grammar or syntax (sin tax) or spell casting is required. It’s the language of touch, love and feeling, in the moment. There are no tense tenses, no declining or conjugating verbs. (Ok, Big Brother is working on splitting mothers and babies apart too, but we can still see glimpses of it at times).
So I find myself wanting to give up reading, writing and numeracy as well as the internet, yet here I still am. It’s surprisingly hard to stop behaving like a computer when you have been trained from birth to live like this. The written word is the domain of the authorities and the law. Yes, there are “alternative” things on the internet, and “alternative” books, but the biggest alternative is to drop out of the authoritarian domain altogether.
If we don’t use the written word, we can’t be put under the spell of spellings, and we would be able to hear the sound of the words much better, rather than envisage the look of the word. (I used to automatically visualise the spelling of a word when I heard it). When you simply hear the sound of words, you can hear the similarities in words that have very different spellings, and the similarities in different languages, and the language barrier starts to fall away. Learning a new language by exposure to its sound is far easier and more natural than the school method of teaching robotic spelling and grammar.
It is the Queen’s English that is taught in British schools. English is the world’s biggest second language. It is the language that computers use. It seems to be sneaking in by the back door as the world’s common language. It is used to program us. It is used to program the world. It is the language of the British Empire to print and impress our minds. Uniformly. Identically. Instantly. Authoritatively. Mass control at the touch of a central button.
It seems to me that the most peaceful peoples of the world, those that have the simplest and closest relationship with Mother Earth, are all illiterate.
The Bible is an authority. Jesus is not an authority, he/she didn’t write anything.
(See also earlier related posts : Do As You Are Told Days, The Dyslexics Are Right, Santa or Jesus, Jesus the Jewess, Eye Shoot, Shut Eye, Scan Gate, Match Made In Heaven, Program Me, Invasion of the Telescreens, Why Don’t You, Square Eyes, Devices, George Engineering, Universe Cities, Carbon Currency, Royal Male, and probably lots more I have forgotten about)
Weapons of Mass Instruction by John Taylor Gatto (about schools) No Logo by Naomi Klein (about our public space being taken over by logos)