How many futile thought patterns and attitudes have we learned from literature and entertainment? How much did we glean from watching movies, television, reading books, and listening to music and end up training ourselves through sheer repetition and familiarity painful and toxic thought habits like:
expectations of love relationships?
These few things alone are enough to drive anyone to drink or drug. Remember the old Charles Bronson movie series, Death Wish? Where the main character played by Bronson becomes a vigilante and seeks out and kills those who wronged him? Or what about the age-old tale of the Count of Monte Cristo? Or the 1990’s movie series, Die Hard? What about all the old Clint Eastwood cowboy movies where he exacts vengeance and kills the whole town?
Did all of these and many, many more through suggestion, repetition, and familiarity not teach us to be vengeful? Did these kinds of experiences and conditioning not suggest to us that violence was a viable alternative? How deeply did these messages get programmed into our subconscious?
Then when we suffered injustices, people were surprised at our level of anger and perhaps our threats or violent retaliations?
What about how we reacted when we got our heart broken… and fell into deep self-pity? Were we not just living out what so much popular music programmed into us?
I remember the old Chicago song when I was a kid… “If you leave me now, you’ll take away the biggest part of me”. And I ended up buying into stuff like this when my wife left and ended up a self-pitying disaster. Now surely there would have been pain regardless, but somehow my thinking made it into something far more complex and painful than it actually was.
Or what about the fait de compli of all self-pitying, unrealistic expectation love songs of all time? Michael Bolton’s “How am I supposed to live without you”? Oh please! With expectations like this programmed into our psyche… no wonder we went nuts, drank, drugged, and fell for the self-pity gig to the degree we did. Depression and misery were just waiting for us. And these are only 2 songs! Am sure literally thousands more affected us and set us up for failure.
How did we get here? Well… from what I see…. we programmed a lot of crap into our thinking. “Entertainment” had a lot to do with it.
Glad to say, am programming much of it out and better stuff in. Life is amazing today. I am wiser in my choice of things I let permeate my thinking.