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Food #33: Experiments in Human Nature: What Would You Do?

Karmic Tests Under Real Life Conditions

Blind Obedience [Stanley Milgram]: How did an entire nature become its leader's willing executioners? The answer is inborn blind obedience and abdication of responsibility.

Prison Experiment [Philip Zimbardo]: How did military police sworn to uphold justice torture prisoners? The power of the situation can turn good people into animals.

Discrimination Labeling [Jane Elliott]: How do labels of discrimination effect us? A school teacher's test show that labels do more damage that would be readily believed.

Interpretation Paradox [Various]: How do we interpret what others are trying to tell us? How we interpret our environment can literally save or destroy our life.

Group Think [Solomon Asch]: Do we all go along to get along? Groups can pressure us so much that we can start disbelieving our own eyes as this experiment demonstrates!

Cognitive Dissonance [Leon Festinger]: How "as you do" can change "as you believe".

Monkey Pay-Per-View [Mike Platt]: What are we all hard wired to pay close attention to? What monkeys will pay to see (and not to see) holds the key!

Halo Effect [Edward Thorndike]: Are we influenced by an individual's outer appearance to judge them more favorably than they deserve? It is the Halo Effect.

Inner/Outer Violence [Albert Bandura]: Does exposure to media violence cause violent behavior or does it give a safe outlet for it? Studies finally reveal the answer.

Sports Imagery [LV Clark]: How do we improve in any area of life? This famous "basketball experiment" proves that mental conditioning is just as important as physical practice!

Foot-in-the-Door [Various]: How others can turn favors into obligations against your will.

Being Instrument [WWYD]: What would you do? What we think we would do can only be known under actual real life conditions. Would you help out someone in real need?

Minority Report [Various]: How one person can and always has made the difference in the world.


Blind Obedience [Stanley Milgram]

"Resistance to tyranny is obedience to God." (Quaker Proverb) Throughout history, blind obedience to evil causes has been the cause of most of the worst karma in the world like wars, terrorism, and suicide bombing. Unfortunately, blind obedience seems to be inborn.

* Tenth Level: In 1975, there was a TV movie, "The Tenth Level", starring William Shatner, Ossie Davis, and John Travolta. If you have ever seen it, it is the kind you would never forget... and one that is relevant in the post-9/11 world.

* Milgram Experiment: "The Tenth Level" was the dramatization of experiments first conducted by Stanley Milgram, a Yale University psychologist. He performed a "Behavioral Study of Obedience" to better understand "blind" obedience.

* Explaining the Holocaust: Milgram really wanted to know: "How had the Holocaust happened? Could it be that Eichmann and all the accomplices in the Holocaust were just following Hitler's orders? Could we call them all accomplices?" So Milgram designed a series of experiments to answer those questions. Although there were many variations, there was one basic process.

* How the Experiment Seemed: The subject (S) is asked to participate in an experiment to determine if pain can be used to improve memory. So an official looking experimenter (E) orders the subject (S) to push levers that are supposed to deliver painful electric shocks to another person who is actually an actor (A).

* How the Experiment Worked: The real experiment is to see if the subject (S) will continue to push levers that will inflict pain on the actor (A). In reality, there were no electric shocks. The actor (A) went into a booth separate from the subject (S). As the subject (S) pushed the levers, they were actually triggering a tape recorder, which played pre-recorded screams keyed for each shock level.

* How the Experiment Turned: When the actor (A) saw the shock indicator cross into the lethal level, they started to bang on the wall separating them from the subject (S). When it became lethal, the actor (A) abruptly stopped screaming for help. Even though the subject (S) hears the actor (A) cry out for mercy, many of them will continue to give shocks despite actor's (A) pleas for mercy as long as the experimenter (E) tells them that it is "their job to continue" with the experiment.

* The Results: Nearly 70% of the subjects (S) were willing to shock the actor (A) to their death as long as the experimenter (E) was willing to accept all the responsibility. That is how blind obedience works to create the worst karma.

Prison Experiment [Philip Zimbardo]

"Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." (John Dalberg-Acton)

When power is absolute, only the most karmically evolved can resist the power to abuse it.

* How the Experiment Worked: In 1971, Stanford University behaviorist Philip Zimbardo recruited college students to participate in an experiment. In this "game", students were randomly assigned to be "prisoners" and "guards" and they were to play out these roles for two weeks within a simulated prison on the campus.

* How the Experiment Turned: This experiment took an unexpected turn when those playing "guards" became vicious and sadistic while those playing "prisoners" became passive and extremely stressed from the "guards" abusive treatment. This experiment was depicted in the movie "The Experiment" starring Forest Whitaker (chief guard) and Adrien Brody (chief prisoner) as in the picture above.

* Power of the Situation: The experiment had to be called off after six days because the violence between the groups had escalated out of control. The students in these groups were "ordinary people" chosen specifically because they were physically and psychologically healthy and so considered safe.

* Warped Behavior: Yet the power of the situation in the guard-prisoner dynamic came to warp their "normal" constructive behavior into "abnormal" destructive behavior. The power of this situation was played out in real life in 2004 when US military police committed ongoing and "unthinkable" human rights violations against prisoners held in the Abu Ghraib prison facility.

* The Results: What "The Experiment" teaches about the human condition is that those who are less mature as Soul will let their egos run wild. As Thomas Hobbes wrote, "the life of man in the state of nature is solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short" because the ego will drive one person to take advantage of another. Unfortunately, "The Experiment" shows that Hobbes was right and how quickly a civilized person can turn into a brute in the absence of civilization.

* Existence of Karma: This is why karma exists. Without causes having effects, the universe would devolve into mass chaos. That is where reincarnation comes in: those who have hurt another in one life will reborn into another life where they will experience that hurt in exact and precise degree. Yet, when you act as if God is always watching and you always do what God expects, that is when you can become free of the ill effects of the power of the situation.

Discrimination Labeling [Jane Elliott]

"Oh, Great Spirit, keep me from ever judging a man until I have walked a mile in his moccasins." (Proverb) Karma teaches by experience for most people only learn from what they live through and live with. Labels which create discrimination are one way this happens.

* Discrimination Kills: Shortly after Martin Luther King was murdered on April 1968, elementary school teacher, Jane Elliott of Riceville, Iowa, conducted a now famous experiment in labeling. Her goal was to teach her students what it was really like to suffer from discrimination by having them experience it for themselves.

* Black Like Me: Elliot was inspired by John Howard Griffin's book, "Black Like Me". This was the story of a white man who dyed his skin brown and suffered discrimination while posing as a black man in the South during the '50s.

* How the Experiment Worked: In Elliot's own words: "Suppose we divided the class into blue-eyed and brown-eyed people. Suppose that for the rest of today the blue-eyed people became the inferior group. Then, tomorrow, we will reverse it so that the brown-eyed children were inferior. Wouldn't that give us a better understanding of what discrimination means?"

* How the Experiment Turned: Although the children knew what was coming, that it was an experiment, and that eye color did not matter, they ALL were effected by being LABELED and, as a result, discriminated against.

* Day One: On the first day, Elliot spent some time berating the blue-eyed and explaining WHY the blue-eyed were inferior and the brown-eyed were superior. Then Elliot gave everyone a test: the blue-eyes all scored below the brown-eyes. Significantly, blue-eyes who were usually good students scored below normal while brown-eyes who were usually poor students scored above normal.

* Day Two: On the second day, Elliot spent some time berating the brown-eyed and explaining WHY the brown-eyed were inferior and the blue-eyed were superior. Then Elliot gave everyone a test: the brown-eyes all scored below the blue-eyes. Significantly, brown-eyes who were usually good students scored below normal while blue-eyes who were usually poor students scored above normal.

* The Results: The LABELS we give ourselves and the discrimination that flows from it have a profound influence on our lives. If we give ourselves positive, empowering LABELS, we can outperform our personal best. If we accept negative, disempowering LABELS, we will under perform. Pure and simple!

Interpretation Paradox [Various]

"We don't see things the way they are, we see things the way we are." (Talmud)

When there is not enough information to make a decision, how do we do it anyway?

* No Kill I: Star Trek fans will be familiar with this "Interpretation Paradox!" Are these words - "No Kill I" - a plea asking another not to kill them? Are these words a promise saying they will not kill another? Or could it be they are both? So how did Kirk and Spock figure out what to make of them? A Vulcan mind meld, of course! For those lacking in this ability, they must fill in the missing blanks with their experience and their judgment: the Interpretation Paradox!

* Pig! Cow!: A man in a hot sports car is driving along a country road. A woman in a run-of-the-mill car emerges from a blind curve in the opposite direction. Her car careens wildly from side to side as she screams "Pig! Pig!" The man, thinking she has made a nasty comment about him, shouts "Cow!" back at her. Then he rounds that blind curve and smashes his car into a pig blocking his lane. He realizes too late that she was trying to warn him of a danger she had already faced. Had he interpreted her words as being helpful, he could have saved his car and minor injuries. Instead, his negative interpretation cost him both.

* How the Experiment Turned: In the Star Trek example, Kirk and Spock, being diplomats (sort of) wanted to bridge the gap between two warring parties. Their training and experience taught them to see the big picture and to find ways to come to a peaceful solution. Since they were looking through a positive lens, they could create a positive result. Compare this to sports car man. No doubt others has teased him about his macho car and his experience taught him that such comments were negative… and that is how he interpreted them.

* The Results: In the Positive Interpretation (Star Trek example), Kirk and Spock ignored the angry mob who had already judged their opponent as guilty. They reserved judgment until they investigated matters further. Compare this to the Negative Interpretation (sports car example). He made an instant, snap judgment of the situation based on his limited experience.

This is the core of the "Interpretation Paradox": some external pressure (time more often than not) forces an individual to fill in the blanks of a certain situation. They fill it in with their memory and mentality. If that is positive, good decisions are the usual result. If that is negative, tragedy is almost inevitable.

Group Think [Solomon Asch]

"Policies are constraints on behavior. Constraints create patterns of activity. Patterns can then be noticed." (Robert Hanssen, the worst spy in American history) Group Think is a passion of mind behind some of the worst karma in human history.

* How the Experiment Seemed: Needing money in college, I participated in Solomon Asch's experiment in "Group Cognition" for $50. The test was simple: were two pictures more like or more unlike one another? Everyone who took the written test got a perfect score, myself included. Then there was a verbal test about the same series of pictures. It should have been a no-brainer. Right? Wrong! This test quickly degenerated into an episode of "The Twilight Zone"...

* How the Experiment Worked: Imagine if you will... me sitting at in the last place in a row among a group of students. Each person gave their opinion of "Same/Different" picture verbally: I was last to speak. At first, everyone agreed on the right answer. Then 20% of people gave the wrong answer, then 30%, 40%, 50%, 60%, 70%, 80%, and 90% were wrong. It never got to 100% because I kept on giving the correct answer. Finally, everyone gave the wrong answer... except me. Just when the "Weird Factor" was off the scale, all the students (except me) got on their feet and started clapping. This made it worse for me!

* How the Experiment Turned: Apparently, I was the only one tested who did not knuckle under to the "Group Think" pressure. Around the 50% mark, most experimental subjects started following the group by giving the wrong answer. No one, except me, had ever passed the 80% mark. The point of the experiment was to understand the "Group Think" process in an attempt to understand how ordinary German citizens could become transformed into "Hitler's Willing Executioners".

* The Awful Truth: When asked why I did not follow the group, I replied, "I thought I would not get the $50 if I answered incorrectly." When asked what I thought about other students giving wrong answers, I said that, "the drug problem at this school was worse than I thought..." Fortunately, the other students chose to laugh rather than be insulted (and I did apologize for my insensitive remark).

* The Results: Yet the learning from this experiment was an important one: that only the slightest pressure from a group is needed for an individual to detach from their truth. Unfortunately, going along to get along can become deadly.

Cognitive Dissonance [Leon Festinger]

"As you believe, so shall you do." (Star Trek, "And the Children Shall Lead")

Do you do as you believe? If you do not, you will experience Cognitive Dissonance.

* Cognitive Dissonance Defined: This is a concept from social psychology: cognitive is the thinking of the mind while dissonance is inconsistency or conflict. Cognitive dissonance is a psychological conflict which comes from an individual holding two or more incompatible beliefs simultaneously.

For example, an individual who smokes but is committed to being healthy experiences mental discomfort with each cigarette that drives a nail into their coffin and destroys the very health they value.
* Cognitive Dissonance Study: In 1951, Leon Festinger, devised a set of theories about communication's social influences, which is known as "Cognitive Dissonance". This was based on extensive studies of human behavior and found that individuals are generally purposeful decision makers who consciously strive for balance in their belief systems relative to their actions.

* How the Experiment Turned: If an individual is presented with information that is very inconsistent with their core beliefs, they will use "Dissonance Reduction Strategies" to regain their internal equilibrium. This theory states that dissonance is psychologically uncomfortable enough to motivate individuals to change their beliefs or actions to achieve internal consonance/congruence. It also states that, in a state of cognitive dissonance, individuals will avoid and/or manipulate information and situations that might increase their internal state of dissonance.

* The Results - Example: Take the case of an individual who refuses to use a seat belt even though the law requires it and even if they know it has saved lives of people they know. They can reduce their cognitive dissonance either by 1) altering their behavior (using a seat belt) or 2) by seeking information that is consonant with their behavior (air bags are safer than seat belts and so seat belts are not needed).

* The Results - Applications: Cognitive Dissonance theory is mainly used to by researchers to understand attitude formation and change inside settings of decision-making and problem-solving. They study how people can be manipulated into adopting external behaviors so that they will change their own internal attitudes.

Monkey Pay-Per-View [Mike Platt]:

"..if they (fans) love you that much without knowing you, they can also hate you." (Marilyn Monroe)

Are we hard wired to admire celebrities? According to the "Monkey Pay-Per-View" study, we are!

* Monkey Study: Duke University neurobiologist Mike Platt conducted a study of the pictures that monkeys would "pay" to watch. The monkeys got fruit juice as a reward for looking at images. The monkeys would accept less juice when it was an image they wanted to see. Similarly, the monkeys would have to get more juice to view images that they were uninterested in seeing. This "pay per view" pattern gives insight into how animals are hard wired.

* Hard Wiring - Part 1: The researchers found that monkeys would give up a significant amount of juice ("paying") to see the hindquarters of female monkeys. This was expected because the sex drive is an instinctive part of animal behavior.

* Hard Wiring - Part 2: They also found that monkeys would also pay to see the faces of superior/dominant individuals (the "alpha males") in the group. This was also expected as an individual's survival was dependent on their harmonious relationship to the group's leader. Confirming this was that monkeys had to be "paid" to look at the faces of those considered to be subordinates/submissives and so were not important to their survival inside the group.

* The Results - Celebrity Attention: What "Monkey Pay-Per-View" teaches about the human condition is that we all make judgments about how to spend our attention. The more important we perceive the individual to be in our life (and to our well being), the more we will pay attention to them.

For example, the student may consider the school principal more worthy of their attention than a classmate (because of his/her authority). Since celebrities are considered to be among the most important individuals in a society, we are all "hard wired" to pay more attention to them… than to "regular" people.
* The Results - Celebrity Worship: This is why people end up worshipping celebrities. Today's mass communication brings a handful of famous people to the attention of multitudes of "ordinary" people. Since the famous are considered to be important and since the ordinary can see and hear them on a regular basis, the result is that unreal relationships are formed between them.
This is why an "ordinary" person can become convinced that the "famous" person (who has never even met them) has a real connection to them… when that connection can only exist inside their mind.

Halo Effect [Edward Thorndike]:

"This would be an excellent match: for he was rich, and she was handsome." (Jane Austen)

Does it really matter how you good looking and how successful you are? Human seem to think so.

* Halo Effect: In 1920, Edward Thorndike coined the phrase "halo effect" to describe how some people get treated better than others because they possessed superior physical, mental, or emotional attributes. He found that people generally see those who are good looking, wealthy, intelligent, and/or successful, etc as being superior in their other attributes as well. Whether or not it is true, we tend to put a halo around them by believing they are also good in the ways that matter most (that they are loving, kind, honest, ethical, moral, and trustworthy).

* Halo Payoff: This is why those who want to influence our opinions pay big money to celebrities to endorse their viewpoint and/or products. They know that people think if [celebrity with halo] thinks that [whatever] is [great, good, or worthy], then it must be so, resulting in sales and profits… whether it is true or not.

* Halo Risk: The problem is that those who have halos are not always angels. Bad karma results when some of them, while their halo is burning brightly, choose cash in on that fame knowing that they will be cheating others. Of course, what goes around will come around and karma will ensure that the scales are balanced between those cheaters with halos and those who they have cheated, defrauded, or have otherwise harmed because of the Halo Effect.

* The Results - Halo Purpose: The whole karmic point of the halos is to teach us all to look beyond them. There is not a saint without a past or a sinner without a future… and all are equal in the eyes of God. Fame does not make someone better, it only makes them more well known. Only the ego believes that the pretty face, the big bank account, the razor sharp intelligence are all that matters. What really matters is the constant evolution and perfection of Soul... and not a temporary halo.

* Beating the Halo Effect: Visualizing an individual doing normal, everyday things (and yes, all the rich and famous do their share of these things) helps to reduce the Halo Effect. Seeing that you are the equal of all those who you admire for their special qualities will tell you that the Halo Effect is gone.

Inner/Outer Violence [Albert Bandura]:

"An eye for an eye will only make the whole world blind." (Gandhi)

Does exposure to media violence cause violent behavior or does it give a safe outlet for it?

* Cause of Aggression: In 1961, Albert Bandura conducted his "Bobo Doll Experiment" to better understand how social learning works. One goal was to determine if violence was inherent inside the individual (via genetics) or if it was learned (via the environment). Another was to determine if aggressive behavior could be learned by children simply by them viewing violent images and behavior (like those that have become much more common in the media).

* Bobo Experiment: Boys and girls from the Stanford University Nursery School aged between 3 to 6 years old were its subjects. They watched a male or a female model behaving aggressively towards a toy called a 'Bobo doll'. The adults attacked the Bobo doll in a distinctive manner. In some cases, the role models used a hammer while in others they threw the doll in the air and shouted "Pow! Boom!".

* The Results: After viewing adult role models behaving badly, the children were left alone in a room filled with toys, including the doll. Just after seeing their bad behavior many of the children imitated the behavior of the adult role models by behaving violently toward the doll. Some children shouted "Pow! Boom!" while others used the hammer on the doll in the same way that the adults had done.

* Replicated Studies: Since Bandura's study, other behavioral researchers have confirmed his findings. The evidence is mounting that adults (who were heavy viewers of violent programs as children) are more likely to be aggressive against others when offended and to commit domestic violence and other crimes.

* Karmic Learning: While we are young and inexperienced as Soul, we learn as children by copying the behavior of the adult role models who are a constant presence in our lives. When we are more mature as Soul, our role models have little or no influence over us, whether we are children or adults. Learning from good and bad role models is how we learn what it and is not like love… so that we can progress in our karmic learning and evolution.

Sports Imagery [LV Clark]

"Edmund Hillary, the first person to climb the highest mountain in the world, Mount Everest, said it felt exactly the same way it had felt during each of his previous summits. Hillary explained that he had already successfully scaled Everest many times in his mind."

* Sports Imagery: Combining physical training, mental imagery, and emotional control can significantly improve an individual's progress in any sport! This has been proven: the following "Basketball Experiment" has been repeated in many countries by various researchers in different sports: all with the same results!

* How the Experiment Seemed: L. V. Clark of Wayne State University was the first to conduct an experiment to test the power of imagery in sports. [For those who want to look it up: Clark LV. "Effect of mental practice on the development of a certain motor skill." Research Quarterly, v31 n4 (Dec 1960):560-569]

* How the Experiment Worked: Clark studied three groups of high school basketball players over a two week period. The first group did nothing extra to improve their skills (only following their usual routine). The second group put in extra practice time by shooting many more free-throws than in their usual routine. The third group put in extra practice time but only by imagining (visualizing) making perfect free-throw shots but not by actually doing "extra, real" physical practice.

* How the Experiment Turned: As expected, the first group (the "do-nothings") performed at the same level as they had done at the start of the experiment. As expected, the second group (the "physical practicers") improved their free-throw skills by a full 24% because the extra practice time made the difference. What was completely unexpected was that the third group (the "mental practicers") improved their free-throw skills by a full 23%! In the years following Clark's 1960 original experiment, similar results were produced by other research studies/teams.

* About the Results: The bottom line is that if we want to improve our outer physical skills, we must also improve our mental/emotional visions. Those who consistently improved their skills the most were those who successfully combined physical with mental and emotional practice. Here is how they did it!

Success with "Sports Imagery" is a three part formula.

One, athletes must put in the time physically practicing their sport so that the body can automatically respond to the mind's commands.
Two, athletes must put in the time mentally practicing their sport so that the mind can get the maximum possible results out of the body.
Three, athletes must put in the time emotionally practicing their sport by cultivating inner calmness so that the body and mind can realize their greatest potential by efficiently focusing all energy on winning.
"If you are only doing PHYSICAL practice, then you are only doing ONE-THIRD of the work needed to succeed. For how to do the the MENTAL and EMOTIONAL work to raise your game to the next level, click here.

Foot-in-the-Door [Various]

"Those who think of themselves as an outcome engineers are manipulators." (Anonymous)

Have you been pressured into doing what you do not want to do? It may be the Foot-in-the-Door.

* Thin End of the Wedge: Have you ever asked you to sign a petition for a worthy cause? And if you did, were you later asked to donate money to the cause? And if you donated, were you then asked then asked to volunteer? If so, especially if you are uncomfortable, you have experienced the "Foot-in-the-Door" technique.

* Trading Down: Have you ever refused to do a large favor and later agreed to a lesser one out of guilt? For example, if you were asked for a big donation, refused, felt bad, and later felt guilty enough to make a smaller donation. If so, especially if you are uncomfortable, you have experienced the "Foot-in-the-Door" technique.

* Creeping Commitment: If you have received "just one little favor" from someone else, it is likely the "Foot-in-the-Door" technique was present. This is a favorite tactic of marketers and sales-people. In theory, when a person gets a small favor, like a free but valuable item, they feel some commitment to the person giving it and that often ultimately results in a financial transaction. It is like the free item is paid for not with money now… but with money later.

* The Results - Creating Obligation: If you have experienced the "Foot-in-the-Door" technique in any of these forms, you will notice the one thing they all have in common. This is an unfair creation of obligation where none exists. The person, who pushes you with the "thin end of the wedge", gets you to "trade down", or draws you into a "creeping commitment", is trying to manipulate you into doing something you really do not want to do in the first place.

* Fighting Manipulation: The key to fighting manipulation created by the "Foot-in-the-Door" technique… is to pay attention to how you are feeling. If you are feeling uncomfortable, guilty, ashamed, or other negative emotions, then this is your inner guidance warning you that you are being manipulated against your will.

* Just Say No: So many people fall victim to this technique because they have difficulty with saying "No" and refusing others. Saying "No" slams the door on the "Foot-in-the-Door" technique. Favors, donations, and the like should be done with a cheerful heart and a clear mind… instead of with feet caught in the door.

Being Instrument [WWYD]

"Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love; Where there is injury, pardon; Where there is doubt, faith; Where there is despair, hope; Where there is darkness, light; Where there is sadness, joy. O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console, not so much to be understood, as to understand; not so much to be loved, as to love; for it is in giving that we receive, it is in pardoning that we are pardoned, it is in dying that we awake to eternal life." (Francis of Assisi)

* Being Instrument: If you are wondering if you should do something, you may have been placed there at that time because you need to do just that.

* How the Experiment Seemed: A major television network conducted an experiment. Would anyone come to the aid of a woman who was being verbally abused by what appeared to be her romantic partner? To answer this question, they hired actors to simulate having an argument (that stopped just short of physical violence) in a public park. To the surprise of the actors and the TV crew, only a few people stopped to view the argument and even fewer made an attempt to help the woman. Yet there were those who did risk themselves to offer assistance.

* How the Experiment Worked: What would you do [WWYD] in this situation? I know what I would do because I did it... in real life. Two people were arguing. The man was beating the woman with his fists. I took my book-bag and threw it against the attacker. Once that man hit the ground, I got my book-bag and grabbed the woman who had been attacked. We ran away. Fortunately, I knew the area better than the man did so we got away from her "boyfriend"/attacker.

* How the Experiment Turned: Later, I was asked by the woman I had helped why I had done so. She explained that plenty of adults had passed them by without lifting a finger... and she was stunned that "a child" (teenager) would intervene to help her. I just looked at her and I did not know what to say. Only later did I realize I was put in that situation because I was meant to help the poor woman get away from her abusive boyfriend before he seriously injured her.

* The Results: Helping others when you can offer assistance is what it means to be an instrument of God. When you are put into a situation where you know that you can help and you decide to help, you are being used as an instrument of God to bring more of whatever is needed at that time and place. When you choose to act as that "being instrument", know that God will always protect you.

Minority Report [Various]

"One can begin to reshape the landscape with a single flower." (Star Trek, Spock)

Can one person make a difference in a sinkhole of evil? Yes, the world has been changed by individuals.

* Majority Does Not Always Win: These studies of human behavior seem to show that human beings tend to go along with the crowd. Yet other studies have shown that the minority can influence the majority, especially when the minority consistently holds "fair" and moderate viewpoints. Often this "minority report" will inspire others to question, and perhaps even challenge, the majority viewpoint.

* Minority Report: In the "Milgram Obedience" study, when one participant refused to progress with the shocks, the others also refused to cooperate. In the "Asch Group Think" study, when just one person ate disagreed with the majority's wrong judgment, it helped the others to resist the "group think" effect.

* Moral Authority: Why the "Minority Report" works… is that it appeals to moral authority, usually it is religious. Christians will be swayed when an appeal is made to the need to "love thy neighbor as thyself". Buddhists will be swayed when the appeal is made to the need for loving kindness. Confucianists will be swayed when the appeal is made to the need for right thinking and correct behavior.

* Personal Authority: Why the "Minority Report" works… is that it appeals to personal authority of one who is revered by others. Although this is usually religious (as in "What would Jesus Do?), this kind of authority is normally associated with celebrity. When movie stars, athletes, businessman, law enforcement and other famous people support a particular cause, when it is not endorsed by the majority, they can be highly effective in promoting it.

* Action Authority: Why the "Minority Report" works… is that ideas put into action can inspire others. Those who open help facilities in depressed areas bring not only physical assistance (food, clothes, shelter, medicine, and so on)… they bring hope. When people see others changing things for the better, they shift their thinking. Today what is majority thinking was once the "minority report" in the past… that is how civilization moves forward.

Credits: from channeled information.


 

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Copyright © 2000-2017, Ellen A Mogensen, Past & Now Forward Holistic Counseling,
532 Old Marlton Pike, Fun Life 248, Marlton, NJ 08053 (856) 988-0197
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