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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Cult of Positive Thinking

 Imagine getting word that your grandmother just died. Or during your annual medical check up your doctor giving you the dreadful news that you have cancer. After confiding in a colleague you're told to just brush it aside,cheer up and think positive. This is an all too common scenario and it's highly insulting too. In the past few decades the positive thinking movement has grown quite significantly and it's become almost taboo to question it's "validity".

For some people it's seen as sacrilegious to feel (much less express) feelings of despair,sadness,loneliness,anger,disdain,or any other emotion deemed "negative". While it might seem a bit nonsensical to the skeptics; it's viewed as the gospel to the admiring fans of  such books as "The Secret" and other "touchy feely" favorites like "The Power of Positive Thinking" and " Don't Sweat The Small Stuff", and etc .


As people have increasingly bought into this craze it seems I'm confronted by such Tom Foolery everywhere I go. It's a bit unnerving and nauseating.


I'm not advocating we dwell on our misfortunes but some people have a hard time accepting that happiness (as with any emotion) is fleeting. A person's feelings vary from moment to moment and day to day. Ignorance might be bliss but I'd rather lack such "joy" if it's not based on anything substantial or real. 

I highly recommend people read "Bright - Sided" by Barbara Enrenreich. It's an eye opener.

It's not uncommon to hear such trite statements as "let it go" or "just get over it". Other than a serious brain injury; I'm not convinced it's possible. It's better to learn how to cope with your feelings instead of being ruled by them. That's why I recommend such great reads as "The Power of Now" by Ekhart Tolle  and  Louise L. Hay's " You Can Heal Your Life". These two books take a different approach and aren't what I'd call typical. "positive" thinking material. So, with that said; I've had enough with the fake smiles. It's okay to admit we don't have it all figured out and that we might be angry or sad. It's not a sign of weakness or a lack of being "spiritual" - whatever that means.

As our retrograde society fairs worse - more people are seeking escapism in drugs,alcohol,and the positive thinking movement. The belief that we're supposed to be happy all the time is nothing more than psychobabble and has no basis in reality. People who feel they're in a constant need of "improvement" are delusional. They just can't face life on it's own terms. They're a pitiful bunch.

To make matters worse - the "positive thinking" gibberish is now promoted in the work place, the media, the education system,and throughout society in general. Those displaying natural feelings of discontent are all-too-often viewed with suspicion to say the least. It's a form of mind control which denies us the full human experience and the right to express it freely. There's a method to the madness; no doubt. Nothing happens by mere coincidence. Now that's something to be sad about.
 


3 comments:

The Rickster said...

It's all rainbows and unicorns with some people. I can't stand these shiny happy people. They put on their rose tinted glasses and pretend like everything is okay when it's not. Putting on a happy face to mask your true feelings only works for so long. Eventually reality will kick in and denial will fall by the wayside.

Ben said...

Thanks Ricky! It's nice knowing I'm not the only one who thinks this way. It's way too cult-ish for me. It's against our nature and we're expected to take at as the gospel or something. It's complete lunacy.

Rachelle Pierre said...

Sometimes I just wanna punch one of these Joel Osteen types that come through my lime. They're such tools. Yeah, I work at book store. lol