Why People Become Relationship Terrorists

First of all, I dislike using labels such as “terrorist.” Labels such as these tend to dehumanize the person we’re talking about and help perpetuate a culture of “enemy images.” And “enemy images” are the driving force that perpetuates terrorism.

But to unwrap this label, let’s agree that terrorism means: “the systematic use of fear, especially as a means of coercion.” The question that comes to my mind is: How could anyone come to believe that using fear to influence someone else to do what we want is the best strategy? (Just look at the history of the Middle East if you want to see how ineffective this strategy is at truly resolving issues.)

Well, the best answer I’ve found to this question has to do with how we unwittingly adopt our culture’s beliefs and then unquestioningly act on them. I haven’t seen anyone who explains this more succinctly than this talk given by …

Dan Dennett: On ants, terrorism, and the awesome power of meme


Here’s one of those talks that can change your view of the world forever. Starting with the deceptively simple story of an ant, Dan Dennett unleashes a dazzling sequence of ideas, making a powerful case for the existence of “memes” — a term coined by Richard Dawkins for mental concepts that are literally alive and capable of spreading from brain to brain. On the way, look out for:
+ a powerful one-sentence secret of happiness
+ a compelling insight into terrorists’ motivation
+ a chilling view of Islam
And just when you think you know where the talk’s heading, it dramatically shifts direction and questions some of western culture’s fundamental assumptions.
This Is Unmissable.

After viewing this talk, it’s not hard to understand how a dangerous set of relationship memes has hijacked most of the brains in today’s culture, and why people end up acting the way they do on “dating” and Survivor type reality shows.

Fascinating stuff! What do you think?

Committed to Your Success,
Neill Gibson

Neill’s Musings on Our Introductory Blog Post

Tag: Personal GrowthNeill Gibson

To expand on my introduction in our first post a little bit…

As long as I can remember I’ve been a “seeker of truth.” I’ve explored many different ideas, philosophies and religions on my journey down this path. And, while I am no by no means a scholar of world religions, I’ve dipped my toe into the waters of most far Eastern, Middle Eastern and Western religions, as well as a number of the esoteric and mystical traditions.

At one point in my past I was quite involved in the Full-Gospel / Charismatic / Fundamental Christian religion, even holding the post of Chairman of the Deacons. But at this point I would probably describe myself as another “spiritual but not religious” type (to help further overuse that now almost trite “personal profile” description.)Buddha

On my journey I’ve practiced what we quoted Buddha as saying: “Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it…” Though, I first heard it articulated in Paul’s First Letter to the Thessalonians, where he tells us to: “Test all things, and hold firmly that which is good.”

Exploring the definition of “good” hastened my departure from the “religious” practice of Christianity as it is exercised today. My exodus came about primarily as a result of the religious reliance on moralistic dogmatism as a way to control the flock, rather than teaching people to depend on that “indwelling spirit” which is able to practice the discrimination that both Buddha and Paul talk about.

So, my journey in large part has been about developing my personal ability to discern the difference between what I’ve been taught and what I can discern as true from myself. And to be able to hear the still, small voice inside that knows this difference, in spite of the roar of those who claim authority.

This has been my quest to discover and hold fast to what I can know as true.

So how does all of this “abstract analysis of the global picture” relate to a New Age Self-Help blog?

I am immensely grateful for what I’ve discovered along this path, and the amazing differences these things have made in my life. My desire to contribute these insights and understandings to others is what leads me to express them in ways that can help others develop the practical skills they need to create lasting transformation in their lives.

I’ve come to believe that this quality of transformation in a person’s life requires a fundamental shift in thinking from the moralistic dogmatism that is in the “air” which most people breathe in and out every day. This kind of “right/wrong”, “good/bad” thinking is the foundation that supports our culture’s belief in scarcity, domination and its practice of “survival of the fittest.” It is the cause of most of what’s least fun for people in the world today.

I think it will be the dawning of a New Age when people learn to throw off the mental shackles of our cultural heritage by learning to think for themselves, as Buddha and Paul suggest. It seems to me that this is an “inside job.” No one else can make a person do the “observation and analysis” necessary to “test all things.” This is a Self-Help journey.Your path to personal growth and spiritual development

My commitment is to support your success in moving father down your path, wherever your still, small voice may lead you. This New Age Self-Help blog is the latest addition to the tools we’ve created to help you do that. I hope this effort supports your success and I hope to hear your suggestions about the ways it could do that, the ways that it does, and the ways it doesn’t.

Committed to Your Success,

Neill Gibson