Perhaps the most nefarious feature of a Domination System is that it seduces us into losing ourselves in a jumble of thoughts and judgments. More specifically, since a Domination System is bad for everyone, it can only function by misrepresenting itself to all or most of its victims. The victims of a given Domination System must believe in certain false propositions, even when ample evidence to the contrary happens to be right under their noses. In fact, the truth is always already within us, which means that our inability to recognize truth is not built into our minds but is something we acquire from our culture. This is possible only through a powerful process of forgetting what we naturally know to be true, a process that happens gradually through many years of education and socialization. By the time we become adult members of civilized society, we are already in deep sleep. A given Domination System can only thrive on false consciousness, on its capacity to make people less conscious than they are meant to be.
The most important truth that we are made to forget is the truth about who we are. This is so because all Domination Systems function by dividing, classifying, and labelling people both horizontally and vertically. If we were to learn the truth about who we are in reality, all of the existing divisions among humankind will become instantly relativized. The absolute solidity of such divisions as gender, race, ethnicity, class, religion, and political affiliation will disintegrate; the distinctions will remain, but they will lose their tremendous capacity to determine our identity and our actions. We will be able to see through them and rise above them. This, obviously, is very difficult to achieve; for a Domination System works incessantly to ensure that we will always identify ourselves with this or that group and that most of us will never find out the truth of who we really are.
Another truth that we are made to forget is the truth about our freedom of choice. This is so because all Domination Systems require that the vast majority of people behave in predictable ways. A Domination System cannot deal with human actions that are spontaneous and authentic, for such actions cannot be controlled and regimented in the service of the system. Consequently, we are educated and socialized into believing that we act in certain ways not because we choose to but because we have to, or because other people or events make us act in those ways. The more we forget our inherent freedom to choose, the less we are able to use it. We lose our freedom merely by believing it does not exist. Very soon, we also forget that we are responsible for our choices. Domination Systems love people who lack freedom as well as responsibility. Such people can be made to feel anything; they can also be made to do anything.
A third truth that we are made to forget is that it is possible for all people to meet their needs. This is so because all Domination Systems thrive on constant, never-ending competition; they are nourished by the win/lose mentality. Consequently, we are made to believe that there is a permanent scarcity of resources, that it is impossible to have winners without creating losers, that it is a jungle out there, that wants and needs are the same, and that happiness is just around the corner (usually sitting in a shelf in the supermarket). Once we accept the proposition that only some people will be able to get the desirable goods and everyone else will suffer deprivation, we know that the purpose of our life is to become (and remain) part of the first group. This also teaches us to constantly compare ourselves with everyone else, for we must determine at each moment whether we are among the winners or the losers; we also wish to know our relative status among the winners, whether we are getting ahead of others or falling behind in the “human race.” All of this ensures that we are never satisfied, that we are always looking for more, and that we won’t help anyone else.
A successful Domination System is able to hide all these truths in plain sight. It does so by employing a very clever trick. Since truth is always already accessible to us, the only way to make it “disappear,” as it were, is by diverting our attention, which is accomplished through the age-old magical trick called distraction. This is where the jumble of thoughts and judgments comes in. We lose touch with reality, and with the truth that reality is willing to offer us each moment, when we learn to give greater attention to thoughts and judgments instead of our actual experiences. The raw experience is our direct portal into reality and truth; this portal is often blocked by a jumble of thoughts and judgments. No Domination System can interfere with our raw experience; it can only divert our attention away from our experience and into the artificial world of thoughts and judgments, a realm that is much more susceptible to manipulations.
Insofar as a Domination System is successful, the overwhelming majority of people living under its influence tend to lose their humanity. But there is hope. Every now and then, some start to wake up from their artificial slumber. They gradually rediscover the forgotten truths and begin to reclaim their humanity. No Domination System is fond of people like these, for they are trouble-makers of the worst kind. Such people are the only hope of humanity.
Waking up, however, involves considerable suffering; it’s definitely not as easy as taking the red pill rather than the blue one.