Archive | October 18, 2013

Deleting Religious Thinking: A Governmental Agenda*

Deleting Religious Thinking: A Governmental Agenda*

This will come as no surprise to many, but what will is the intensity of the agenda. Psychotherapist Carl Jung warned of this a long time ago when he said:

{Revile not ye those whom they call upon besides God, lest they out of spite revile God in their ignorance. Thus have we made alluring to each people their own doings. In the end they will return to their Lord } (An-Anam 6: 108)“Just as man, as a social being, cannot in the long run exist without a tie to the community, so the individual will never find the real justification for his existence, and his own spiritual and moral autonomy, anywhere except in an extramundane principle capable of relativizing the overpowering influence of external factors. The individual who is not anchored in God can offer no resistance on his own resources to the physical and moral blandishments of the world. For this he needs the evidence of inner, transcendent experience which alone can protect him from the otherwise inevitable submersion in the mass. Merely intellectual or even moral insight into the stultification and moral irresponsibility of the mass man is a negative recognition only and amounts to much more than a wavering on the road to the atomization of the individual. . .

“The State has taken the place of God; that is why, seen from this angle, the socialist dictatorships are religions and State slavery is a form of worship” – Carl Jung

Loud and clear in the Common Core Curriculum practiced in 46 U.S. states, and exported to countries like Egypt through subjects like English, and Social Science, the momentum picks up speed in the name of fundamentalism.

By Ben Swann

Is the U.S. Government working on a program to…well…program the way  you view religion?

A whistleblower who has worked on that program says yes and he wants  you to know exactly what has been going on.

The first step towards truth is to be informed.

If I told you that the Defense Department was using taxpayer dollars  to learn how to influence people with religious beliefs in order to control  those beliefs, would it really surprise you?

Would you think that I am a tin foil hat wearing conspiracy  theorist?

Would you care if I told you that the program was aimed at  controlling fundamentalist Muslims?

How about fundamentalist Christians?

Here’s the backstory. In 2012, Arizona State Universityʼs Center for  Strategic Communication or CSC was awarded a $6.1 million dollar research grant by DARPA or the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.

The goal of the project according to ASUʼs website is to “study the  neurobiology of narrative comprehension, validate narrative theories and explore  the connection between narrative and persuasion.”

A lot of technical talk there, so lets dig into the details.

The CSC program is actually about creating narratives. Using effective communication, largely video, to control the thought process of groups of people, and ultimately to be able to trigger narratives through magnetic stimulation.  At its core, the program is focused on how to win the narrative  against Muslim extremism. It’s a fairly interesting concept.

According to documents leaked to us, this project integrates insights from three mutually-informing theoretical terrains.
In short, the goal of the program is to combat and change religious narratives because of their role in “extremist behavior.” The whistleblower who revealed this program to us, worked for several years on the program. They asked not to be identified.

Ben: What were you told about the proposal as you began working through it?

Whistleblower: Yeah, I thought that it was benign. They told me it was about trying to figure out what parts of the brain are affected by narrative persuasion.  Just to figure it out just for academic reasons. So we looked at narrative transportation which is basically how an individual is transported  into a narrative, how they understand it…kind of like when you read a good book  you get really enthralled with it.

At its core, the program attempts to map the brain to determine which portions of the brain allow you to accept a narrative presented to you.  It’s called narrative theory.

Mapping this network will lead to a fuller understanding of the  influence narrative has on memory, emotion, theory of mind, identity and  persuasion, which in turn influence the decision to engage in political violence  or join violent groups or support groups ideologically or financially.

You see, the project is focused on the belief that the reason  Muslims in the Middle East are swayed to religious violence is not because of  the reality of what is going on around them per se, but because they are  believing a local or a regional narrative.

Ben: The local and regional narrative then is that the brain automatically assumes things because of a narrative we’ve been taught since our  childhood, is that it?

Whistleblower: Right yeah that’s true. We call those master narratives. So in America we have this “rags to riches” master narrative where if you work really hard you can become successful and make a ton of money. So in the Middle East, they always use the example of the Pharaoh. That’s the master narrative that’s in the Qur’an, where there’s this corrupt leader that, you  know, is really bad for society. And they use the example of Sadat who was  assassinated.

When the assassin killed him, he said, “I have killed the Pharaoh, I have killed the Pharaoh.” So they assume that he was relying upon this Islamic master narrative to fuel his actions.

So how does the program change this? Again a lot of technical speak here so stay with me. But it’s broken into three phases.

–          Phase I

is to map the Narrative Comprehension Network using a set of  stimuli designed from the point of view of two different religious cultures.

–          Phase II

will test hypotheses generated in Phase I, adding two  additional manipulations of narrative validity and narrative transportation.

–          Phase III

 it investigates possibilities for literally disrupting  the activity of the NCN through Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation.

Ben: Phase III is fairly interesting. I noticed in the documentation it says let’s not talk too much about this because who knows if  we’ll ever get there. But when you do read what Phase III is it is a little surprising, it’s called Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation. This is not something that’s science fiction, it’s not something they’ve cooked up. This is a real  technique that’s already been used in the past, correct?

Whistleblower: Yes, it started out in the psychiatry field when people were depressed and when you’re depressed certain parts of your brain are  not functioning correctly. So they created this technology, which is basically a big magnet, and you put it on their brain and it turns off that part of the brain that’s bad or wrong and it would help them with their depression for  several weeks to a month and they’d go back and do it again. So this technology has been around for ten or fifteen years.

Ben: So it’s very high tech propaganda, what we’re talking about.

Whistleblower: High tech and validated propaganda, yes. So if they’re able to turn off a part of the brain and get rid of that master  narrative that will make you not believe in a particular statement, they would  have validated this propaganda. So if they turn off portion X, they know that the propaganda is going to work and the individual is going to believe whatever  is being told to them.

So why do all this? Because the project is based on the idea that despite the good work of the U.S. in the Middle East, the message of the work is not being received.

“The frequent rejection of US messaging by local populations in the Middle East, despite US insistence on the objective truth of the US message,  illustrates the narrative paradigm at work. The well documented ‘say-do gap’ between US messages and US actions is seen by some as contributing to a lack of  narrative validity in stories produced by the US. Similarly, stories of US aid do not ring true in a culture wherein Christian foreigners, since the 11th  Century, have been invaders and sought to destroy and rule.”

So how to fix this?

Ben: How do you move someone from simply watching a video or seeing  a video all the way down that line to behavior? It’s a pretty powerful tool if you’re able to do that.

Whistleblower: Right, so they think that maybe an extremist statements or a video like Al Qaeda puts out will lead to some individuals doing  a suicide bombing, for example. So they’re trying to look at this video or the statements and take away a part of your brain that will think that it fits in  with your culture or master narrative and that will hopefully lead you to not do  these extremist, violent acts.

So what you need to know is that this program boils down to one central idea. If people aren’t reaching the conclusions the U.S. government would like them to reach, there must be a way to force them to accept these narratives.

Remember that the claim is that the U.S. despite giving aid is viewed in the Middle East as invaders. That, according to the program research is the product of embedded narrative, not a result of action.

So the view of the U.S. as invaders in countries where we have standing armies, dozens of military bases, the U.S. paying off drug lords in  Afghanistan or regional warlords in Iraq or where we consistently bomb via drone  strike in Yemen, Pakistan and Somalia or where we fund dictators until those  dictators are overthrown and then attempt to fund the rebels, who end up  becoming dictators.

All of that has nothing to do with the U.S. view of Muslims in the Middle East because clearly they are missing the fact that the U.S. gives  aid.

The next step, control the narrative and if necessary, use magnetic stimulation to force people to accept the view of the U.S. that we desire them  to have.

After all, aren’t extremist Muslims dangerous? Extremist Christians? See the problem with the question is who gets to define extremistWho decides if religious beliefs are inherently dangerous?

And if we believe that government should have the power to control how the extremist thinks… wouldn’t they have the authority to decide how and  what we all think?

Note: I contacted Arizona State University’s CSC Department  requesting an interview about this program.  A spokesperson told me that the University would not comment on the program. That all inquires should be sent to DARPA.

Source*

Related Topics:

War on Faith and Family Continues

Family that Homeschooled their Children Harassed from Germany to France, the US and Back Again*

Obama’s Manipulating the Brain Project

Silencing the Expression of Faith

Madonna Studying the Qur’an!

The Government Not You Makes Decisions about You!*

Egypt Court Rules against Banning Porn Websites*

Egyptian Christians Against General Sisi*

Egypt Closes 1,000 Mosques

The Paedophilia Past of Eurozone’s Chancellor Merkel’s Coalition Party*

Islam Next Stage in NWO Common Core Curriculum*

Parent Arrested for Questioning the Common Core Curriculum*

The Secret History of Western Education Behind the Common Core Curriculum

Single-Sexed Schools vs. Civil Liberties*

The Last Illusion

It’s About Shutting YOU Down!

The Heart*

Alchemy of the Heart

Beyond Mass Control

The New Pope!

Why I Will Never, Ever, Go Back to the United States

Why I Will Never, Ever, Go Back to the United States

Niels Gerson Lohman

After a year of traveling, I had planned a last, short trip. I was going to take the train from Montreal to New Orleans. The travels I had been undertaking earlier this year had brought me to places that were meant to form the background of my second novel.

This trip, however, was for my dad. He, a trumpet player, loved New Orleans and had died a year ago. It felt like the first sensible trip I undertook this year. I had been searching for ways to forget about the last hours at his deathbed. He had been ill for 15 years and his body just would not give up. It was a violent sight. I had decided the trip to New Orleans would put an end to those memories.

Usually, I barely plan my trips in advance. But this time I had booked everything: my train tickets, hotels and my flight back to Montreal, from which I would depart back to Amsterdam. In total the trip was supposed to take three weeks. The confirmations and tickets I had printed and tucked away in a brown envelope I had bought especially for the trip. I like things to be neatly arranged. At home, in Amsterdam, my house enjoys a slight version of OCD.

The first part of the trip, from Montreal to New York, is known to be one of the world’s prettiest train routes. When we had just passed the sign ‘Welcome to the State of New York,’ the train pulled over for a border check. I put the brown envelope on my lap. On top of the envelope I filled in my migration form with utmost dedication. I love border crossings. Forms don’t lie.

The customs officer walked by and asked everybody on the train a few questions. Where they were from, where they were heading. The usual stuff. Everybody who was not a U.S. or Canadian citizen was to head for the dining car to fill in an additional green form.

In the dining car sat a cheerful looking family from the Middle East and a German man with a mouth in which a small frisbee could easily be inserted. I took the seat across the German, who had already filled in his green paper, and started on my own, dedicated, hoping to impress him. He was not throwing me friendly looks. The customs officer took the German’s papers and welcomed him to America. They switched seats. He put his hands on the table and looked at me. We must have been of similar ages. He had a goatee and slid my passport towards him like it was a small gift.

I had not finished my novel yet, but my passport was complete. It was filled with pretty stamps. He did not like the stamps.

First, he saw my Sri Lankan stamp. The customs officer raised his eyebrows.

“Sri Lanka, what were you doing over there?”

“Surfing. Traveling. My best friend lives there. He is an architect.”

The officer flipped on, seemingly satisfied. Secondly, he found my stamps from Singapore and Malaysia.

“What were you doing over there? Singapore and Malaysia? Aren’t those countries Islamic?”

Looking over my shoulder, his eyes searched for his colleague’s confirmation.

“Malaysia, I think so, yeah. But not Singapore. It’s a melting pot. A very futuristic city. Airconditioned to the ceiling. To Singapore I went mostly for the food, to be honest.”

“Sure.”

“I’m sorry?”

“Nothing. And how about Malaysia?”

I explained flights departing from Malaysia were cheaper compared to Singapore.
That I only went there for a few days, but also, a little bit, for the food. The customs officer went through some more pages. Then he found my Yemeni visa. He put my passport down and stared at me.

“What the hell were you doing in Yemen?”

“I went to the island Socotra, it’s not on mainland Yemen. It’s a small island closer to Somalia. A very special place, some call it ‘Galapagos of the Middle East.’ I think 85 percent of the plants and animals there, are indigenous.”

“Weren’t you scared?”

“Yeah. I was scared. When I was at the airport in mainland Yemen. That entire area is now taken by al Qaeda, I believe.”

The customs officer was looking at my passport no longer. If he would have leafed through, he would have found Sharjah, Dubai and Abu Dhabi stamps.

That was the first time I had to open my suitcase. Six customs officers went through my two phones, iPad, laptop and camera. In my wallet they found an SD card I had totally forgotten about. They did not like that. By now I was the only one left in the dining car and the center of attention. I had put a raincoat in my suitcase, because I’d heard New Orleans tends to get hit by thunderstorms in the late summer. An officer held up the coat and barked:

“Who takes a coat to the U.S. in the summer?”

I answered it would keep me dry, in case the New Orleans levees would break again. The officer remained silent. He dropped my coat like a dishcloth.

The raincoat seemed to be the last straw. The customs officers exchanged looks.

“We’d like to ask you some more questions. But the train has to continue, so we’re going to take you off here.”

I looked out of the window. We weren’t at a proper station. Along the tracks were piles of old pallets.

“Will you put me on another train, afterwards?”

“This is the only train. But in case we decide to let you in, we’ll put you on a bus. Don’t worry.”

I started to worry. I packed my suitcase as quickly as possible and was escorted off the train. There were three officers in front of me, and three behind. My suitcase was too wide for the aisle, it kept getting stuck between the seats. I apologized to the train in general. While I struggled, the officers waited patiently and studied the relation between me and my suitcase.

Outside, we stopped in front of a white van. The officers permitted me to put my suitcase in the back and I was about climb into the van, when then they halted me.

“You are not under arrest. There is no need to be scared. But we would like to search you.”

“I’m not scared. But it’s kind of exciting. It’s like I’m in a movie. You’re just doing your job. I get that.”

To me, that seemed the right attitude. They searched me for the first time then, just like in the movies. Before I climbed into the van, I had to give up my phones. I seemed unable to close my belt by myself, so an officer helped me out. This is when the sweating started.

In a little building made of corrugated tin, I opened my suitcase once more. Behind me, there was a man in tears. An officer was telling him about the prison sentence the man was looking forward to. He had been caught with a trunk full of cocaine. The man kept talking about a woman who seemed to be able to prove his innocence, but he was unable to reach her.

After that they searched me again. Thoroughly.

Just like in the movies.

In the room next to me they tried to take my fingerprints, but my hands were too clammy. It took half an hour. An officer said:

“He’s scared.”

Another officer confirmed:

“Yeah. He’s scared.”

I repeated, another attempt to be disarming:

“This is just like in the movies.”

But border patrol is not easily disarmed.

In the five hours that followed, I was questioned twice more. During the first round I told, amongst others, my life’s story, about my second novel’s plot, gave my publisher’s name, my bank’s name and my real estate agent’s name. Together we went through all the photos on my laptop and messages my phones had been receiving for the past months. They wrote down the names of everybody I had been in touch with. In my pirated software and movies they showed no interest.

During the second round of questioning, we talked about religion. I told them my mother was raised a Catholic, and that my dad had an atheist mother and a Jewish dad.

“We don’t understand. Why would a Jew go to Yemen?”

“But… I’m not Jewish.”

“Yeah, well. We just don’t understand why would a Jew go to Yemen.”

Again, I showed them the photos I took in Yemen and explained how nice the island’s flora and fauna had been. That the dolphins come and hang out, even in the shallow water and how cheap the lobsters were. I showed them the Dragonblood trees and the Bedouin family where I had to eat goat intestines. They did not seem to appreciate it as much as I had.

“You yourself, what do you believe in?”

I thought about it for a second and replied.

“Nothing, really.”

Obviously, I should have said:

“Freedom of speech.”

When I’m supposed to watch my words, I tend to say the wrong ones.

The last hour was spent on phone calls about me. Now and then an officer came and asked me for a password on my equipment. By then, the cocaine trafficker had been brought to a cell where they did have a toilet. I continued my wait. An officer, who I had not seen before, flung the door open and asked if I was on the Greyhound heading to New York. I shrugged hopefully. He closed the door again, as if he had entered the wrong room.

Finally, two officers came rushing into my waiting room.

“You can pack your bag. And make sure you have everything.”

They gave me my phones back. All apps had been opened. I had not used my phones that day, but the batteries were completely drained. Because I was soaked in sweat, I attempted to change shirts while packing my bag. It seemed like I had made it.

“How much time do we have? What time will the bus depart?”

“We don’t know.”

I was unable to find the entrance to my clean shirt. I held it high with two hands, as if it was a white flag.

“So… what’s the verdict?”

“We are under the impression you have more ties with more countries we are not on friendly terms with than your own. We decided to bring you back to the Canadian border.”

They brought me back. In the car, no words were said. It was no use. I was defeated. To the Canadian border they said:

“We got another one. This one is from the Netherlands.”

The Canadian officer looked at me with pity. She asked if there was anything I needed. I said I could use some coffee and a cigarette. She took my passport to a back room and returned within five minutes, carrying an apologetic smile, a freshly stamped passport, coffee, a cigarette, and a ticket to the next bus back to Montreal.

I have been cursed at a Chinese border. In Dubai, my passport was studied by three veiled women for over an hour and my suitcase completely dismembered. In the Philippines I had to bribe someone in order to get my visa extended for a few days. Borders, they can be tough, especially in countries known for corruption.

But never, ever, will I return to the United States of America.

Niels Gerson Lohman is a writer, designer and musician from The Netherlands. His website is: www.nielsgersonlohman.com.

Related Topics:

Why We Left the U.S.

Why We Left the U.S. for Argentina

Why I Left Canada