Most Of What You Believe Is Not True
"The majority of men prefer delusion to truth. It soothes. It is easy to grasp. Above all, it fits more snugly than the truth into a universe of false appearances—of complex and irrational phenomena, defectively grasped." [H.L. Mencken, The Anti-Christ]|
"The average man never really thinks from end to end of his life. The mental activity of such people is only a mouthing of cliches. What they mistake for thought is simply a repetition of what they have heard. My guess is that well over 80 percent of the human race goes through life without having a single original thought." [H.L. Mencken, Minority Report]NOTE: 1
What Mencken does not say, though it is true, is that those who do think for themselves are distrusted or hated by the vast majority of people who go through life believing whatever they've been taught, without ever once asking themselves, "how do I know this is true?" They do not ask that question, and dislike anyone else who does, because it disturbs their comfortable delusions.
So, the vast majority of people will hate this article. Most will not even consider it, because they do not know why what they believe is true, (because it usually isn't), and are terrified that they will discover most of what they have come to accept as true is false and baseless.
I do not mean everything people believe is not true. Much of what people believe is true, else they would not be able to survive. Some of the untrue things people believe are not serious, but most are, and some are deadly. Those that do not end up killing them will waste their time and energy, driving them to pursue the impossible or unprofitableNOTE: 2, preventing them from becoming all they possibly can be, and ultimately filling them with endless troubles, disappointments, worries, and fears without ever knowing why.
My objective is not, however, to change anyone's beliefs. It is impossible to do that, in any case, and I'm actually not interested in what others believe. Not everyone, however, is gullible, ignorant, and stupid enough to be taken in by these lies and are bewildered by those who are. If that is your case, than I am writing for you. The world of the ignorant will try to convince you there is something wrong with you, because you do not believe what everyone else believes. Well you are not wrong, it is the world of idiots you are not a part of that is wrong.
The following is a list of things most people believe that are not true. The list includes concepts or ideas for which there is no basis (they 'name' things which are not real or just do not exist) as well as concepts that are always misinterpreted. Some of these concepts are true but almost everything most people believe about them is untrueNOTE: 3.
The list is presented without comment. Following the list are some very brief comments to explain why the items are included. A detailed discussion of what is wrong with all these untrue things people believe will follow in separate articlesNOTE: 4. By that time all those who have no interest in, or more likely are afraid of, the truth should have been weeded out.
Some Brief Notes
Untrue Things Most People Believe
- Natural Law
- Penal Law
- Environmentalism (ecology)
- Patents, Copyrights ("intellectual property")
- Social Solutions
- Political Activism
- Endless Terrors
Rights is one of those concepts that actually identifies nothing. It is the belief that one has a claim on anything other than what they have achieved or accomplished by their own effort. The concept of rights is not a view of reality, but a view of how one would like reality to be.
Justice has a true meaning. It is the identification of the consequences one experiences as the result of their actions. Reality punishes all wrong acts and rewards all correct ones. All attempts to interfere in the justice of reality are unjust. It is what all governments do.
Duty and Honor are related, and there is a correct meaning for both, which is almost never recognized. The popular idea of both is wrong. The wrong idea of duty is some obligation one is born with. The wrong idea of honor is fulfilling that unearned obligation—like being a sacrificial lamb for one's country.
Patriotism is an evil concept put over as honorable. It is the belief that one's country is in some way good just because it is one's own country, and that one must honor it or even die for it.
Laws refers to all man-made laws. Principles, sometimes called laws, are discovered and are true because they correctly describe aspects of reality. All man-made laws are human inventions which contradict and frequently defy the principles of reality.
Natural Law is the mistaken concept that man-made laws are based on the principles of reality or nature. They are not. They are simply made up by men who wish to make people behave in ways they would like and have the power to enforce their laws.
Penal Law is all the aspects of man-made law that are based on the false beliefs that human beings can be made to behave in certain ways by threats of punishment and that doing something bad to someone who does something bad is justice; the latter is variously called retribution, retaliation, or revenge. Both are examples of the belief that two wrongs make a right.
Government is an agency with the exclusive "legal" right to initiate force in a given geographical area. All government is evil and all actions of government are harmful, but government, like death, is inevitable. All attempts to make government better, or to eliminate it, are both futile and harmful.
Organizations are fictional entities consisting of two or more individuals with some supposed purpose or goal to which the personal purposes and goals of the individuals are subordinated. Anything individuals choose to cooperate on or work together on they can always do better without having to join something.
Teams are organizations of individuals wrongly thought to be better at accomplishing things than individuals. The idea is based on the false belief that the brain-power of ten idiots is ten times better than any of the individual idiots, when in fact ten idiots are ten times as idiotic as any single idiot.
Unions are organizations that supposedly help workers have more success as employees. In fact unions only "help" employees who cannot (or will not) improve themselves and their position by their own effort while harming the truly competent and ambitious. Unions are essentially gangs that achieve whatever they achieve by intimidation and threats.
Corporations are special organizations made possible by government force. Corporations are fake entities that are treated as if they were actual beings. The purpose of corporations is to relieve the real people who are the corporation from responsibility for their choices and actions.
Contracts are based on the belief that writing something down compels those who sign it to do what the contract says. No piece of paper has ever made anyone do anything they chose not to do.
Constitutions are contracts written and signed by some men, that are then considered binding on all men, even though they never signed it. A constitution is essentially a sham.
Psychology is the pseudo-science that pretends to explain how human consciousness works. Much of psychology actually denies consciousness, the very thing it claims to explain. If there were no consciousness, psychology would be the study of nothing, which mostly it is.
Emotions are feelings, including desires, whims, sentiments, and passions. With regard to what is right, good, or important, the emotions do not matter at all. Almost all human errors in judgement and wrong behavior are the result of allowing the emotions to determine one's choices, always in conflict with one's best reason.
Repression is an idea invented by the pseudo-science, psychology. Whenever one is self-disciplined enough to not let some emotion or desire determine a wrong and potentially dangerous choice, it is called repression.
Environmentalism (ecology), is a pseudo-science that regards the physical earth as having a value of its own, independent of any human value, and holds that human values must be subordinated to the values of the physical earth. Of course, if there were no human beings, the earth would have no value at all. It is only to human beings that anything has a value.
Evolution is the pseudo-science that purports to know how life came to be and how all different forms of life came to be. It doesn't know either.
Sociology is the pseudo-science that claims to seek solutions to human problems by studying the behavior of societies while ignoring individual human nature, as though individual human problems could be solved by directly manipulating societies.
Anthropology is the pseudo-science that believes the way to know how people ought to live is to study all the failed ways people live.
Science is the objective study of the nature of physical existence. Only about one tenth of one percent of what is called science is actually science. (The figure is admittedly a guess and probably a little high.)
Altruism is the collectivist substitute for ethics. Ethical principles are absolute and apply to every individual. Altruism is a substitute for true ethics, is relative, and regards all individuals as subordinate to all other individuals or some collective, like 'society'.
Patents, Copyrights ("intellectual property") are, like corporations, fictional concepts. Only the tangible can be property.
Programs as designed by teachers, politicians, doctors, sociologists, psychologists, environmentalists, academics, and all other self-appointed experts and authorities are essentially methods of controlling the behavior of others. They never work.
Social Solutions are supposed methods of solving what are called "social problems." There are no such things as, "social problems." Only individuals have problems. When all individuals solve their own problems, there will be nothing that can be called social problems.
Politics is what never has to be taken seriously.
Political Activism never has to be taken seriously, because politics never has to be taken seriously. Political activism is always an exercise in futility. Nothing positive is ever accomplished by political activism. "Political activism," is often a euphemism for the behavior of certain thugs and mobsters.
Policy is a ruse used by both government and corporations to excuse wrong actions as necessary or impossible to avoid, "because they are policy." Policies are just made up, and can always be changed, or ignored, but are treated as though they were written with the finger of God.
Religion is any of the 4,200 varieties of superstitious beliefs currently embraced by most of the world's human inhabitants, or any of the multiple thousands of such superstitions embraced throughout history. Here is a simple observation: if any religion is correct, all the others are not, and all the other believers are deceived. It is what any religious adherent believes about all other religions.
Celebrity is the popular evaluation of a person determined by how many people regard the individual as important. Since most people are idiots, the more prestigious (popular) the celebrity, the more likely they are worthless.
Sports fans are infatuated with the least important of human attributes, their physical abilities. "They are fascinated with those who accomplish mindless physical feats, spectacles of muscle in which almost any other creature is superior, yet they worship them as heroes. Their minds and emotions are taken over by these spectacles of mindless physical achievement." [From "The Wisdom of Tathagatagarbha."]
Art, as in "fine arts" and as popularly understood, is the creation of beauty as physical objects, literature, music, or performance. In reality most so-called art is a scam sold to the ignorant who are afraid to admit their ignorance or believe their possession of art in some way augments their own prestige. Most art is not beautiful at all, but ugly and repulsive.
Diets are one of the most popular of an endless stream of fads and scams that promise better health, success, or happiness, which they cannot possibly deliver.
Fitness is another fad. While physical health and fitness are important objectives, the much more important objective of keeping one's mind healthy and fit is always neglected by fitness fans. This is the reason for the prevalence of so many dumb brutes.
Authorities, especially politicians, academics, news commentators, as well as, religious leaders, psychologists and sociologists are always meddlers. There is only one legitimate authority, the authority of every individual's mind. All other so-called authorities are usurpers.
Animals are regarded by many as having virtues and values. Only beings capable of choosing ends and purposes have values and only beings that must consciously choose what they do have virtues; that is, only human beings have values or virtues. It is also questionable if any beast incapable of using indoor plumbing and eating with proper utensils ought to be allowed to live in a civilized household. Most people understand this about most animals; the pigs and chickens are kept outside; and there is no logical reason for the exceptions made for the others.
Endless Terrors is a description of how most view life. Modern politicians have it easy. Mencken said, "the whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by an endless series of hobgoblins, most of them imaginary." Since the whole world has become paranoid, politicians no longer need to make up things for the people to fear, they are already afraid of everything—almost always needlessly.
Sexuality is a term made up by psychologists to obfuscate the true nature of sex. When a man and woman have intercourse it is not an, "expression of their sexuality," it is an example of normal human sex. Everything else is abnormal and the term "sexuality" was invented to cover the host of variations those abnormalities take and lend to them a false air of legitimacy.
Force may only be used morally by an individual in defense of himself or his own against the use of force by another. In most cases, other, less costly, means of defense are possible and would be better. The moral individual will always use the least costly and most effective method of defense. The idea that force can only be defended against by force is just a lie, or perhaps ignorance.
War is pure unmitigated evil. It is glorified and promoted by those who are insulated from its horrors and profit from it. There is no justification for war, ever.
If You Want To Know The Truth
If you want to know the truth, if you are not afraid of it as most people are, if you can bear to have your most cherished and comforting beliefs questioned, consider each of the ideas listed above. The descriptions I've added to those items are not arguments, by the way, only descriptions. About each one, simply ask the following questions: How do I know what I believe about this is true? Do I have any other evidence for it being true beyond what I've always believed and have become comfortable with, what I have always been taught, and the fact it is what everyone else believes? If this is not true, how could I have been convinced for so long that it was; is it because it is what I would like to be true? If I have doubts about the truthfulness of any of these things what should I do?
You do not, of course have to ask yourself any of those questions, or consider any of these possibilities at all. If you choose to ignore the questions and go on believing all that you do, it will do me no harm, and will certainly not offend me in any way. If that is what you choose, I strongly recommend you ignore this and all subsequent articles that will be written on these subjects. Please do not be offended just because I do not agree with you; go in peace. You do, at least, have the advantage of knowing what you believe is pretty much what everyone else believes, keeping you safe from harsh criticisms and constantly being misunderstood.
I quote Mencken, not as an authority, but because he said so many true things so well. Mencken was not a philosopher, he was a journalist, but nevertheless had some of the keenest philosophical insights which he expressed beautifully. Mencken actually had a disdain for formal philosophy, no doubt because he was familiar with it as that which is put over as philosophy in the universities.]
[NOTE 2: Many people spend their lives pursuing things which do not exist or are impossible to achieve because what they believe exists or is possible is simply not true. Others spend their lives defending themselves against non-existent evils and harmless "dangers" because they believe what they have been taught.]
[NOTE 3: Most of the things I've identified as those which most people believe but are not true I discovered myself. The discoveries were made by doing the very thing Mencken said most people do not do, thinking for myself, always asking the question, "is this true and if it is how do I know it?" Some of the items in my list I was alerted to by others. (Some of those others were H.L. Mencken, Ayn Rand, and G.B. Shaw. People miss so much by not reading.) I believe I would have discovered all the items myself, eventually, but having others discover them before me saved me a lot of time and effort.]
[NOTE 4: To see all the separate articles addressing the untrue things people believe, please see the Index]