Tv Addiction & De-sensiti
zing to Violence
In previous entries we have explored the process of awakening and the un-learning of the false ideas we were indoctrinated with. Pursuing the path of awakening is highly personal, and there is no one path that will work for you. I will share with you some insight into my journey without casting judgement on those who haven’t kicked the same habits that I was inspired to kick. Addictions are hard to let go of, especially when one is not consciously aware of the grip it has on them. As the addict walks down the degenerative path, they become de-sensitized to their routine. The addict may be unaware of this de-sensitizing and confuse their addiction with objective reality. Today I explore an addiction that destroys one’s ability to focus, replaces their creative urge with complacency, and implants subversive messages into their sub-conscious mind that unconsciously influence their decision-making ability- this is of course the addiction to television.
I was raised in a tv-in-every-bedroom environment. I remember when we put a tv in the dining room so that we could watch tv rather than talk to each other at dinner. At the time it made perfect sense, and we generally enjoyed watching tv programs together. Indoctrination works well in group settings. Nearly all furniture arrangements in any house I went to had all the seating facing the tv, and at 90 degree angles from one another. The tv was the center of attention- we quoted what the tv said, and we memorized the jingles from commercials. I remember visiting homes with an extra living room that had furniture but no tv and wondering what in the hell they did in that room. At that time I thought you either had the tv on, or you were terribly bored. I thought tv was great because you could watch whichever shows you liked, you could talk with people who watched the same shows as you, and it was a nice way to relax after a long day. You can see in the memories I retain that there is a certain lack of honesty. I was exposed to endless hours of hypnotic commercials, excessive violence and head-splattering, and the news broadcasts that discuss rape and homicide in a calloused matter-of-fact tone. Somehow I had tuned out the relentless bombardment of violent sounds and imagery while retaining only the fond memories of the shows I enjoyed. My addiction was just like my peers at the time and I didn’t think anything of it.
I understand there are some tv shows worth watching and I relate to the urge to smoke a bowl and relax on the couch, but once I gave up regular tv consumption I felt a re-sensitizing happening. Slowly and surely I could listen more patiently to others and I could focus on projects more intently. I now have extreme difficulty having a conversation with someone who is simultaneously watching tv. This predicament is difficult because the tv addict will become uncomfortable or instantly bored with giving you their full attention. When I hear the violence described by the nightly news I find it shocking that they choose to focus their attention on this material. Anyone who puts on the nightly ‘noose’ gets what they are after. Once you stop watching the tv regularly, you will see politics for the sideshow farce that it is. Our president is a tv actor, and the election cycle might as well be American Idol. Turn off that bullshit. Focus on your own projects. It is never too late to turn off the tv and start your own adventure.