On Conspiracy Theories
Updated: Apr 21
For the honest philosopher, the attainment of power over others isn't the main goal, if at all. The main directive is to discover the potential truths of existence. Other goals could be possible, but not the creation of dogma and using it to make people adore you (and even receive their money or even property).
Ultimately, what cults usually exist for is to deceive people into paying you money for fake stuff. They might even create philosophies just for that very goal. That goal contradicts the path of the moral truth-seeker, whose material gain is but a secondary aim compared to the discovery of insights. Should you ever manipulate your "buddies", you will lose your credibility as a philosopher, whenever the truth about you gets out to the public.
Therefore, you see, there is a monastic element to being a philosopher. Corrupt philosophers, who downgrade their oath to finding the truth, are technically no longer actual philosophers, and it all begins with whether or not you're going to manipulate or deceive your newly acquired buddies. Once the main goal becomes secondary, the motivation for philosopherhood becomes corrupt.
The message of this article is this: don't make a cult out of your work, not only because it will make you a manipulator, but also because it could end up becoming a disaster. Scientology, the People's Temple -- all are examples of philosophies that were integrated into cults, which ended horribly. No honest philosopher would wish to destroy their image and legacy, just due to the temptation for power.
So, if you happen to force people to call you "master", or give away their property, perhaps philosophy is not for you, because philosophy isn't about the ego of the philosopher, but about their contribution towards the truths in their respective fields.
A model democratic citizen, who wishes to be well-invested in politics, should, I believe, consume any content about their country and make the final decision at election day. Regardless of where they are on the political spectrum, people should consume multiple outlets if they want to get closer to the truth. Only by combining contrasts, the truth can be clearer to those who seek it.
Why? Because if you happen to hear only what you'd like to hear, and the thing you're hearing is incorrect, what have you achieved by doing so, other than being pleased? Each outlet out there, is a gamble we make, if we are to only hear what they have to say. Obviously, the media you usually consume might be true, but why not increase the odds, by hearing what the other sides have to say as well?
When discussing about democracy, Osho, If I recall, praised it, but also criticized it, as he believed it is filled with "idiots". While I disagree with him on the "idiots" part, I can understand what he means on a non-literary scale. People in general are easy to persuade as long as you have their trust and as long as they see you as a figure of authority.
Once you put the opposing side/s to shame, when in such position, people will be more reluctant to hear what these shamed sides have to say as well! That, ultimately, leads to bias; the bias some of us call "patriotism" when we justify what content we prefer to consume.
The problem with multiple consuming, however, is the fact that not all of us have the time, nor energy, to watch multiple channels and read multiple newspapers. We have jobs, children and other assignments we must attend to. This problem, I'm afraid, I can't offer much help beyond recommending to try and invest your time in a way that will encourage you to listen to various sources.
When it comes to the niche of philosophy, all of what I mentioned in this article applies as well. Remember that philosophers too can be wrong about things, and I don't pretend to believe that I will always and necessarily be correct about anything I think about, just because of my occupation. That is called having an open-mind, and it's one of the reasons why I am agnostic and not necessarily an atheist.
Even scientists and other truth-seekers can be wrong. It is a better path than exclaiming "I have all the truth you need" while that is not necessarily the case. No one is entitled to be the ultimate truth attainer. Therefore I won't be offended if you might doubt what I have to say. We are both in the same boat in a way that, we both seek and want the truth. I just come up with some of my contemplations and present them to the world.
Conspiracy theorists, on the other hand, believe they are "fighting for a cause", just like Hitler believed he was the good guy in his story, the "hero" sent by God. Even before COVID, people believed that vaccinations could lead to autism. These people surely wanted to help prevent this disability, I assume?
Otherwise, they would not go and make it their agenda, to stop these injections from being used. The same goes for Flat Earthers, who want their beliefs to be shared and become the norm, and many other examples.
What distinguishes philosophers from conspiracy theorists is simple -- philosophers theorize not to force their beliefs on others, or to promote an agenda, but to try and get closer to the truth. Some do it on their own, anonymously. Others gather up in smaller groups and discuss their thoughts within themselves.
Conspiracy theorists, on the other hand, are, in a way, "missionaries", meant to spread their ideology as the truth, and that's why they won't even admit that they are conspiracy theorists, as that name is derogatory to what they believe in. They don't have a mind as open as philosophers and will find it harder to doubt their own beliefs; an act that, essentially, is philosophical.
The name of this site, "Philosocom", is a combination of two words -- "Philosophy" and "Communication". I don't pretend to believe that every philosophical article that I present will necessarily be completely true, because that's what being an open-minded individual is. A good philosopher is one who, ultimately, is prepared for the possibility that he may be wrong to whatever degree.
Democritus, an ancient Greek philosopher, believed in atoms and just happened to be right, after thousands of years, when the atom was discovered. The same goes for anything I present here -- we philosophers are, in the end, in a "competition" to see who is right in whatever field we "compete" in.
Thus, the essential idea of this article is presented: read the material of various philosophers and my own. If your time allows, dig deeply into multiple sources as well. That will be your greatest perk as a philosophy reader.