|Freaky little midget with many psychological complexes. Right now, just finishing up a re-read of Eric Fromm's "Escape from Freedom," which is about the psychology of Nazism. It was written in 1941 (GASP! An old book!!!)|
So, I was just reading the chapter last night that deals with how Hitler specifically manipulated the masses. He apparently was totally unashamed of it and wrote about his plans to conquer the German psyche in Mein Kampf.
(I read Mein Kampf - or at least long excerpts from it - when I was in junior high. A friend who had become enthralled by neo-Nazism had some pretty f###ed up notions of what Nazism was actually about.
She said I had been fed propaganda, so I read Mein Kampf. She was particularly taken aback that, contrary to the information her far-older-than-her boyfriend had been giving her, Nazism did not include a "new feminism," and women were basically supposed to be submissive broodmares for the state.
Anywho... that's little spiel on my personal reading of Mein Kampf.)
So, the line that struck me the most last night was this:
"It seems that in the morning and even during the day men's will power revolts with highest energy against an attempt at being forced under another's will and another's opinion. In the evening, however, they succumb more easily to the dominating force of a stronger will... The superior oratorical talent of a domineering apostolic nature will now succeed more easily in winning for The New Will people who themselves have in turn experienced a weaking of their force of resistance in the most natural way..."
- Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf, quoted by Fromm, Escape from Freedom
Now, in many ways Hitler was an idiot. And in thousands and thousands of ways both big and small, Hitler was an asshole.
But one thing Hitler was just totally juggernaut at was convincing people that his nutty ideas made sense. That he was juggernaut at.
And I thought of all the people who use such broken logic... and the "news" they passively consume for hours each night...
On a somewhat connected note - well, connected by virtue of the fact that we're still talking about authoritarian personalities - I... stopped attending my little Catholic church up here.
See, they started handing out pamphlets that asked us to pray for things for the Church. Which I'm okay with, generally.
But one of the things we were supposed to pray for is "upholding traditional marriage." And my brain just glitched.
In my mind, when you join a church, if they tell you something is wrong or there is a right way to do things - say, that we should all eat our bread with the butter side down - that's okay with me. Even if it's totally ridiculous.
Why? Because I choose to be a member of a church. I think it's a good thing to have guidance way, way beyond the guidance of just "this is okay because it doesn't hurt people and this is not okay because it does."
I don't visualize myself as a robot where we only have a problem if you literally take a hammer to my circuits.
Human social life is complicated. It's full of games of domination and submission, cooperation and expression. I think religion is there partially to give us rules and guidelines for how to deal with those problems.
But... what right do we have to tell people outside the church what to do? None, imho. Not a single bit.
See, my life isn't so spectacularly awesome where I think I have the definitive answer to all of life's problems.
Maybe... gay is better for some things. We do have a global overpopulation problem, a large segment not breeding could help with that. (Just giving an example.)
On the other hand, 5,000 years of human history have said there's something not right there. Maybe there's a reason for why that is. I'm just not confident enough to say that I know the answer to these questions.
Because... I don't know. I think that's pretty obvious because I'm not ruler of the world yet. If I knew how to answer all of life's problems, people would make me king pretty fast, right? (I think so.)
So, instead of my Catholic church this week I attended Northern Lights Chapel on base. And it was a big "ahhh..." Because the pastor wore short sleeves and played a guitar. We sung nice songs about Jesus. And honestly, that's kinda what I'm looking for in a church: guidance, community, opportunities for service and sing-a-longs about Jesus.
The last thing I'm going to say is "Facebook stinks." I could write a huge rant on it, but I think most people agree at least a little with the first 100 points of my anti-Facebook manifesto.
So, that's it for today. This was pretty much all my aching sinuses and sneezes could handle. :-)