It has been a little while since I posted to The Critical Thinker, however in light of this Kate Middleton mess I could not help but to write a post. Critical thinkers it has taken me a while to put this post together because I really could not decide what approach to take because there were so many different angles and approaches swirling in my head. So many things came to mind such as the notions of being star struck with celebrities, the ridiculousness of most (if not all) “reality” TV shows, how we continuously feed into and give power to the “paparazzi” by purchasing the magazines and newspapers who publish their intrusive photos to why are we so interested in bad news and what goes on in other people’s lives? All of the concepts swirled for a few days.
I even gave some serious thought in terms of what this post would be titled and because most of what I've described above in my opinion is mental and spiritual trash, I came up with the title Too Many of Us Have Become Mental and Spiritual Garbage Trucks. Now I'm sure for many of you critical thinkers reading this, the thought of being compared with a garbage truck is not a flattering thought, however, upon doing the research for this post I came across a YouTube video that is actually titled Types of “Garbage Truck” and in that video it shows various types of garbage trucks such as the Automatic Side Loader (ASL), Container Delivery (CD) and Front Loader (FL). After viewing this clip, it dawned on me that too many of us have allowed ourselves to become mental garbage trucks. In my opinion, being star struck with celebrities, reality TV shows and the power given to the paparazzi by us fall into the category of mental garbage. Trash is always placed into something whether it is a can, a truck, or a dump; trash is always put into something hence the simile of us being mental garbage trucks. Why does a magazine publisher feel the need to publish photos of Kate Middleton’s breasts? Why do we care? Why are we even caught up with breasts to begin with? Yet, every day we load mental trash like this into our minds, bodies, and spirits like our sanitation workers load trash into a garbage truck. If we would stop supporting the magazines and newspapers that purchase pictures from the paparazzi, the paparazzi would cease to exist. The same holds true for the constant bombardment of bad/negative news in newspapers and on television; good/positive news would be reported if that is what we as a world truly wanted reported. Noted author Marianne Williamson says “Today's newspaper is just a reflection of yesterday's thoughts.” In other words we keep getting what we are getting because that is what we collectively think about…. bad news. Blogger Joel Gascoigne in a recent post titled The Power of Ignoring Mainstream News hits upon this same point when he states:
“Around 2 years ago I stopped reading and watching mainstream news. I don’t read a single newspaper, offline or online, and I don’t watch any TV at all. I recently mentioned this on and and it created a lot of discussion, so I wanted to expand on my thoughts and experiences. When I first started ignoring news, I felt that I was simply making an excuse, that if I had more time I read the news. Today, however, it is a very deliberate choice and I feel consistently happier every single day due to ignoring the mainstream news. It just so happens that the last 2 years have also been the most enjoyable and productive of my entire life, and have contained some of my greatest achievements.”
Why are we constantly looking for something negative to read about, hear about, or say about someone else? It is beyond me why we are so determined to focus on what is going wrong in someone else's life compared with being focused on what is happening in our own lives. Maybe that's the problem. Too many of us feel the need to have someone else's life be crappier than ours in order to make us feel good about ourselves. First we fawn all over them [celebrities], “Oh I can’t believe he/she shook my hand,” “ he/she gave me an autograph,” “ he/she took a picture with me,” or “I’ll never wash this hand again,” and then we look to read all of the dirt (trash) about them that we can find. Newsflash!! Celebrities are human beings just like the rest of us, and yes, Kate Middleton has breasts just like any other woman and in the European countries women sunbathe topless. When is the madness going to end? Speaking of madness; this whole notion of “reality" TV (which I also consider garbage) mystifies me. Is there anyone on the planet who does not have enough reality of their own? Yet, the website Reality TV World lists over one thousand reality TV shows in alphabetical order on its site http://www.realitytvworld.com/realitytvworld/allshows.shtml. Again, I guess we have to escape our own reality and be lost in someone else's. Ridiculous.
There is an old saying “Garbage In – Garbage Out.” In other words what you put in is what you get out. Could that be the reason that we are constantly besieged by all of the negative things that we are constantly besieged with during our newscasts and in our newspapers? Could all of the negativity be a result or manifestation of us allowing too much garbage into our minds, bodies and spirits thereby causing this same garbage to come back out? Think about the garbage we take in on a collective basis and how much garbage that must be going out on that same collective basis. Maybe author Marianne Williamson is onto to something when she said “Today’s newspaper is just a reflection of yesterday’s thoughts.” Something to critically think about…….. As always, I welcome your response in the commentary section of this blog and feel free to follow me on Twitter @thinkcritical01.