Originally Posted by Rick336
But many people have been programmed so "rottenly" for so long that it is nearly impossible to change. Their free will is severely limited because their brains have been programmed one way for their entire lives.
Think about Fred Phelps.
Oh yes, true. Believe me, I know more than I would like to know about rotten programming.
But very few people have been pushed into that kind of extreme. It is exceedingly rare.
The problem seems to be, rather, that many people are programmed so subtly and with so little of the extreme surface insanity such as Phelps demonstrates, that they are less likely to have occasion to even OBSERVE their conditioning. They may not even know it's there.
And if they do, they do not perceive it as obstructing their life in any way. They funnel it away as part of the overall meaning of the world, or a philosophy or ideology which they believe determines reality. Or even IF they do perceive it as an impediment in their own life, they perceive the effort involved in re-programming their conditioning to be too much work.
The problems are as follows:
1. to recognize one has been programmed (which probably includes recognizing how it occurred, and learning to understand why)
2. to discover that one's conditioned responses can be changed
3. to determine that one wants to invest in the work to change conditioning.
4. to learn how to go about producing such a change and then implement it in step-wise (but not linear) ways over a long period of time.
Probably, most people are content to live with their discontents.
For those of us who have noticed this, that we are living in little Hells in our own minds, we can choose to re-pattern our own thoughts and emotions, piece by piece. We can create new emotional patterns that will be healthier for us, and which are ultimately healthier for those we come into contact with.
We can choose to take ourselves down a new road.
I say this for our own benefit, not for Fred's. We can make new choices. Every day, we can make new choices that will re-route our thoughts and emotions to places where we would rather be.