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posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 04:36 PM
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Welcome to Planet Salem





“Peace. It is a providence, and no great change; we are only what we always were, but naked now.”

-Arthur Miller, The Crucible


Frank Waters, the author of The Book of The Hopi, lived with the Hopi as a young man and noted their pronouncedly demure, people-pleasing and subservient nature. In his book, Frank let's us know that the Hopi act that way, in his studied opinion, because it has been inculcated in to them by the sheer terror of witchcraft. Anyone could be a witch, and they likely were, if you were Hopi back in the 30s and 40s when Waters hung out with them. So the strategy was to be as nice as possible to everyone, so as not to end up killed somehow by a witch.

Some folks may think that's silly, and that the Hopi were and are primitive. Some might think that witchcraft is all in one's mind; I don't, and I never have. Even if witchcraft has only ever had power within the human mind, and across that unknowable substance which networks all of us together, it has been fully exteriorized now, as the actual computer networks we are all now nodes on and the software like Prism that is hoovering those networks for our our personal information. Welcome to Planet Salem.

We live in a society where we prefer secrecy and hiding over being who we say we are and having nothing to hide. We then want to be able to turn around and leverage the fact that we know that others are hiding something, so that we have the option of digging up dirt on them so that we can turn it in to actionable information that can be used to 'get' them. In the science of anthropology, that is commonly referred to as witchcraft, and that is what our creation, The Internet has realized for us all in a way that far exceeds our wildest dreams.

All these issues have arisen from the fact that the vast majority of people have two lives, a public life, and a hidden, secret existence that is only known to themselves. Deleting an incriminating Facebook post before your significant other can see it, wiping your browser history so when your mom searches “thai food” she doesn't get a nasty shock when autofill volunteers “thai milfs”; have you ever been on the wrong end of a divorce settlement because your spouse thumbed through your text messages?

All that fingerbiting and ulceration and hiding- and you haven’t even done anything illegal. And if you have, and must hide it? Take that anxiety and treble it. Think about the power that flows from the threat of exposure, and where it derives from: every last one of us is ashamed to be seen doing what we all do in hiding. It’s a lever that could shift supreme court decisions, foreign policy, high finance.

We have forgotten the true meaning of Witchcraft. Witchcraft is about fear and control. It's about a very, very personalized assault on someone's being, using the most personal articles and information attainable from and about that person. That's how witchcraft works. From the first moment that one human gave another the stink eye, witchcraft has been our constant companion.




ATS members, how can this be fixed?

www.abovetopsecret.com...



We are in this place right now because we put ourselves here. We have never as a nation been able to escape from, or resolve the very same issues that we did not deal with at Salem. We have insisted that it be this way. Everyone knows, without being told, that a great deal of hardware and software development comes from the demand of people wanting to not be 'seen' while they are indulging in vice. And to a great extent, this has become the basis for what most people experience as the World Wide Web.

We want to keep it that way because we are not willing to give up what we perceive to be the "ace-up-our-sleeves". We insist on this secret space so that our secret selves have a place from which to operate, and to perpetrate on others a digital version of what we have perpetrated on one another for millenia. Only we can stop what we have created. There is only one real answer, and I am not terribly hopeful that people are going to be able to handle what it means now, when we haven't been able to deal with it for 325 years.

What made Salem so treacherously tragic, was that when many years had passed, and historians were able to properly reconstruct the events called the 'Salem Witch Trials', they were found to have had everything to do with everything but burning candles, and owning a cat. What they found was a community of people connected (networked) by, adultery, greed, embezzlement and every other sort of rotten behaviour that people can be found to perpetrate on one another. No one has ever perpetrated on us the horrors that we perpetrate on others and ourselves every day. A death by a million cuts is still death.

Salem was a #e-slinging contest. Everyone knew each other, they all had 'dirt' on each other, and they hated each other's guts. In Arthur Miller's The Crucible, Abigail Williams has John Proctor by the gonads because of information she has on him. Salem was witchcraft at its best: Information Warfare par excellence. John had to learn how to get out of his bind the hard way, but he did it, and it came at considerable 'cost' to 'himself'.

If you have ever seen the Movie adaptation of Miller's, The Crucible, you can watch as Miller's characterization of J. Proctor has his secret self literally broken down and dissolved by the process he endures. All that is left is John Proctor. Unfortunately, the real John Proctor cannot escape the powerful trajectory of his secret-self, and the best that the real John gets in the end is a noble death.

That is our only hope, and always has been, that we become exactly who we say we are and refuse to perpetrate on one another from beyond the veil of the secret world we are all networked in to. We have to stop trying to find some external influence that is the source of all this info-horror and cop to the fact that we are all doing this to each other and then stop doing it.

That's the answer: we flush this stupid idea of 'anonymity'. There never has been any such thing. It's a game of cat and mouse that we have been playing forever, the only answer is to stop it. Just as with a mathematical function, wherein each first component can only correspond to exactly one second component, so we cannot serve two masters. The only way out of this is to kill the secret self.

I'm totally not up for that; how about you?

edit on 4-7-2013 by Bybyots because: .




posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 04:48 PM
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reply to post by Bybyots
 


First, let me begin by saying thank you for the interesting and articulate post. Very refreshing. I also cracked up at this part:


o when your mom searches “thai food” she doesn't get a nasty shock when autofill volunteers “thai milfs”


Further to your analysis, I would like to share a opinion. You seem solely concerned with our own personal definition of anonymity and how we wish to preserve this separate and private self.

I would argue that we are not concerned primarily for personal/internal and self serving reasons, but to avoid external manipulation and the accumulation of data that can be used to influence and pressure the people around us to ends not of our own volition..



posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 04:55 PM
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reply to post by MDDoxs
 





I would argue that we are not concerned primarily for personal/internal and self serving reasons, but to avoid external manipulation and the accumulation of data that can be used to influence and pressure the people around us to ends not of our own volition..


Are you meaning that one would not want the manipulation and the accumulation of the data that was generated by their secret-selves to have a negative influence on those close to them?

Thanks for posting,



+21 more 
posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 05:06 PM
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reply to post by Bybyots
 


Wow, what a good post.

There was a movie (not safe for the family) by Bobcat Goldthwait, wherein a woman committed a nasty dirty act in her past, and wants to disclose it with her new soul mate so they can be totally open. The act of disclosing the act messes up her once perfect relationship totally. In the end of the movie, we get to the point, which is that we tell lies to make ourselves better people. We present ourselves to others not as we are, but as we wish we were, that we may become that. So in other words, not disclosing past acts, letting sleeping dogs lie, is a way we redefine our identities and grow.

However, in the context of everything we ever have done being recorded, that growth must stop, we can't release the past, we can't become new people, because we are forever tied to our past. So instead of the natural format, where human identity is fluid and ever changing, the idea that there is this vast surveillance apparatus out there ties us forever to a single point in our development, a past identity which we can never escape, and we end up living the same day over and over again. This underlines what a brutal thing blackmail is to people, it stops their ability to move beyond something they regret and become different people.

The whole Paula Deen n-word affair underlines this so well. Deen admitted to using the n-word decades prior, and apologized profusely. But her career is toast. Our society can't allow her to GROW beyond a racist view from her youth, she has to be tied forever to what she said. To me the message that broadcasts is "ever had a racist thought? Well don't try to move beyond that, you can never can overcome racism, you never can move beyond it." What a toxic message for the world.



posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 05:15 PM
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reply to post by Bybyots
 


Starred and flagged after the first paragraph. i'm gonna love reading what's left.

BRAVO !




We live in a society where we prefer secrecy and hiding over being who we say we are and having nothing to hide. We then want to be able to turn around and leverage the fact that we know that others are hiding something, so that we have the option of digging up dirt on them so that we can turn it in to actionable information that can be used to 'get' them. In the science of anthropology, that is commonly referred to as witchcraft, and that is what our creation, The Internet has realized for us all in a way that far exceeds our wildest dreams.


And thru witchcraft we all worship an image.
edit on 4-7-2013 by randyvs because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 05:57 PM
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reply to post by Bybyots
 


An interesting opening statement, i think you try to make a point too hastily though and the ending is unsatisfactory to me, perhaps you had that other notorious aspect of the internet age in mind, the diminishing attention span.


It's always interested me that Himmler collected as many transcripts of witch trials as possible for his own personal study, i wonder if Germany was ahead of the game in that regard, as they were at the time in so many fields, and that the methodology of modern witchcraft is employed by the state.



posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 05:59 PM
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reply to post by tridentblue
 


Great post, yourself; you really know how to cut to the bone.

Your post made me realize the profound ability to forgive that we would all have to develop in order for people to step out of their secret lives.

I think that is what must make this idea so terrifying in such a primal way. In Miller's dramatization, John Proctor could have pulled the plug on the whole 'trial' on day one simply by stating the truth. What we see is his struggle, all the way until the bitter end, to overcome the fear of knowing that what his secret self had done was about to ruin more lives than just his own.

Knowing that, Proctor must also deal with his fear being compounded by the fear that he is unforgivable, and that he will not be forgiven. Sadly, it is often the case that we cannot see a way to forgive others if we ourselves feel unforgivable or have never been forgiven.

This is precisely what I meant to express in the OP when I voiced my doubts about us being able to pull this off. It seems to me that it would stretch the present abilities of human loving-kindness to the snapping point.

Thank you very much for coming by to post.




posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 06:03 PM
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reply to post by Madrusa
 


Well, this is a thread, where an opening post can be supplemented by additional posts to back up claims and/or opinions put forth by the opening salvo. I think the opener was just long enough to "put it out there".


As for this idea, I like it. It links Black magic, with Blackmail.
Having something "personal" on another, is quite a way to cast a spell, literally stop them in their tracks.



posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 06:10 PM
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reply to post by Madrusa
 





An interesting opening statement, i think you try to make a point too hastily though and the ending is unsatisfactory to me, perhaps you had that other notorious aspect of the internet age in mind, the diminishing attention span.


I am not complaining, because I am grateful for what I have learned having tried, but it is has been very difficult to articulate what is in the OP. It has taken more minds than my own to develop the idea over a fairly long period of time. I had an editor.

I know it is long in terms of the sort of thing that is posted these days, but I am confident that the message is worth gleaning from the text.

Thanks for coming by to add to the thread,




posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 06:15 PM
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reply to post by spacedoubt
 





Having something "personal" on another, is quite a way to cast a spell, literally stop them in their tracks.


Yes, and the power of a "Network-Witch" is only limited by their knowledge and ability to cast 'scripts' (spells). The Internet and "security tools" have allowed us to bring the "witchcraft" like no culture before us. Same witchcraft: realized.

Thanks for being here.




posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 06:24 PM
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reply to post by Bybyots
 



It's just me i'm never satisfied, but like i said very thought provoking, and there are a lot of inter related areas worth further consideration.

The secretive inner self aspect of the psyche has of course been around long before the invention of the interwebs, and seems to me to reside in ultimate darkness like some great black hole, were all aspects of life rotate around it's periphery, are drawn in and reduced through gravitas and self immersion..but again that's probably just me.



posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 08:20 PM
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I believe you are most correct in your statements regarding the power of 'witchcraft' and where that power appears to come from. This is a very good reason for secret societies to use the sorts of rituals that they are alleged to commit, and I shan't name names (skullnbones) . But...

Maybe...maybe we can use this power for our betterment as well. Witchcraft need not be about fear and control. Perhaps in a group effort, by exposing our selves to each other, and allowing ourselves to grow out of our past, we can enrich our future. Is this, perhaps, what the "witches" of the Hopi did? Were they nice to each other out of 'fear' or were they nice to each other because they knew of the powerful effect it would have on them were they not nice - not fear, but I think we would all agree that if we were in this sort of sacred contract, where-in we had to act lovingly to each other, and in turn speak well of each other and think well of each other and we could reach our desired futures while shedding our undesirable past, we would uphold that contract, for ourselves and hope too that others would uphold that contract as well. I am aware that there is some element of fear in this situation, but it's not really a negative sort of fear, or at least not as I consider it.



posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 11:47 PM
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reply to post by 3OGRE3
 




I believe you are most correct in your statements regarding the power of 'witchcraft' and where that power appears to come from. This is a very good reason for secret societies to use the sorts of rituals that they are alleged to commit, and I shan't name names (skullnbones) . But...


As far as the cumulative small injuries that we inflict upon one another in secret that I refer to as 'death from a million cuts': While I agree that ritualized behavior does have much to do with the world in which our secret selves operate, and that it brings a certain kind of focus, I would not necessarily agree that it is something that people always set about to do, at least consciously, with an intention towards ritualization.

In terms of grown adults running around in robes, at night, in large groups, they are out there, but I'd like to hear more from the membership before I post much on that. As I mentioned, the OP was only able to be put together in a way that would be palatable to others after much thought, so you can imagine that I have quite a bit to say about quite a bit of it.



Maybe...maybe we can use this power for our betterment as well.


No, we must eschew it (the seeming power); we are much more powerful as human beings, just plain-old humans. The thing to do is to recognize it for what it is so that it has no power over us.



Witchcraft need not be about fear and control. Perhaps in a group effort, by exposing our selves to each other, and allowing ourselves to grow out of our past, we can enrich our future. Is this, perhaps, what the "witches" of the Hopi did? Were they nice to each other out of 'fear' or were they nice to each other because they knew of the powerful effect it would have on them were they not nice...


No. Waters was implicit about where he perceived the influence to have come from. The Hopi had been subjugated by the Spanish, and then the Americans, Waters saw that they had fallen on one another due to the stress. Their culture was in a great state of decay when Waters lived with them, which is why the Hopi were probably so generous with the cultural gems that they entrusted to Frank. No, they were for sure scared #less of each other.



- not fear, but I think we would all agree that if we were in this sort of sacred contract, where-in we had to act lovingly to each other, and in turn speak well of each other and think well of each other and we could reach our desired futures while shedding our undesirable past, we would uphold that contract, for ourselves and hope too that others would uphold that contract as well. I am aware that there is some element of fear in this situation, but it's not really a negative sort of fear, or at least not as I consider it.


I love you, man. That's really beautiful. If we could accomplish what is suggested in the OP by something like the means that you are suggesting, then yes, the fear will have not been for nought and will have provided the propellent for a positive outcome.

Thanks 3OGRE3,

edit on 4-7-2013 by Bybyots because: .



posted on Jul, 5 2013 @ 01:13 AM
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Well from personal experience, that's the ONLY way to live happily is to be who you truly are and not deceive yourself and others with a false misrepresentation of who you are. That being said, an individual should have the right to decide what level of information they are comfortable with sharing online, as it's not deceptive to want privacy for yourself or out of consideration for others involved.

It shouldn't have to come to the extreme of 'the world knows everything about you', nothing private or personal to move forward. What it takes is losing the shame and lack of self respect that comes from purposely manipulating, deceiving and denying who you truly are to pacify or please others. There is no need for a witch hunt when you are proud of who you are and aren't caught up in an indoctrinated soup of unworthiness and guilt that leads you to point a finger at others to lift yourself up from the self inflicted low of not being true to yourself.



posted on Jul, 5 2013 @ 01:20 AM
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Originally posted by tridentblue
reply to post by Bybyots
 


Wow, what a good post.

There was a movie (not safe for the family) by Bobcat Goldthwait, wherein a woman committed a nasty dirty act in her past, and wants to disclose it with her new soul mate so they can be totally open. The act of disclosing the act messes up her once perfect relationship totally. In the end of the movie, we get to the point, which is that we tell lies to make ourselves better people. We present ourselves to others not as we are, but as we wish we were, that we may become that. So in other words, not disclosing past acts, letting sleeping dogs lie, is a way we redefine our identities and grow.

However, in the context of everything we ever have done being recorded, that growth must stop, we can't release the past, we can't become new people, because we are forever tied to our past. So instead of the natural format, where human identity is fluid and ever changing, the idea that there is this vast surveillance apparatus out there ties us forever to a single point in our development, a past identity which we can never escape, and we end up living the same day over and over again. This underlines what a brutal thing blackmail is to people, it stops their ability to move beyond something they regret and become different people.

The whole Paula Deen n-word affair underlines this so well. Deen admitted to using the n-word decades prior, and apologized profusely. But her career is toast. Our society can't allow her to GROW beyond a racist view from her youth, she has to be tied forever to what she said. To me the message that broadcasts is "ever had a racist thought? Well don't try to move beyond that, you can never can overcome racism, you never can move beyond it." What a toxic message for the world.



I think that part of the problem is that some people think they are perfect. The fact is every saint was once a sinner. To hold the past over someone, especially someone who was young and immature is to fore go the act of forgiveness. If you believe in reincarnation it is quite easy to speculate that at sometime just about everyone could have been some sort of monster or something approaching sainthood. Every human being without exception is capable of the most horrendous or beautiful deeds. If everybody realized this then the world would be a very different place. Every human is the same, we are all one, one encapsulates the whole. To cast the first stone in certain situation's is to cause injury to one's self. Judge not lest you be judged.



posted on Jul, 5 2013 @ 01:31 AM
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I don't have a problem sharing with the world all the drugs I do and all the sex I have and whatever other secrets I may or may not have... It's all "you" who are gonna have a problem with it and try to tell me how wrong I am or try to throw me in jail over it. Not that I'm a criminal, but yeah I've broken laws before.

The reason people desire anonymity is because they KNOW they will be judged, even though those doing the judging are guilty of their own transgressions. They will be judged because those doing the judging have done a better job so far of hiding their secrets, and so they feel justified in doing so. If everyone realized "hey wait, I'm not perfect either" then they wouldnt be so quick to judge others. But people seem to think that, since nobody can prove that they are not perfect, then it is appropriate to behave as if they are.

How would the world be if we all instantly knew all of eachother's secrets? Maybe a massive leak will take place and everyone who knows you will be able to type in your name and read through all your emails and texts and see the details of who you've called and when, and all the websites you've visited and basically just everything electonical including the ability to use facial recognition to search for any appearances you've made on any cameras including someone else's cellphone camera, because every picture anyone's ever taken, or video, could be stored somewhere... How would this change society? Every cheating husband or wife could.be caught by whoever decides to search their name. Even if a wife decides not to look, her friends and family might dig up dirt on her husband and throw it in her face. And the information could go all the way to your birth...

I guess the context could be that an alien race gives us this "gift"... the gift of truth.

I only ask because it could force us to stop judging each other, and I think judgementalism is a big part of this problem. It leads to people seeking anonymity... But then the question is, how much are we really willing to accept from each other. Everybody is different and I get that, but I don't think I can ever accept a serial killer, or people who mess around with kids. But are these problems a symptom of our society? Have we somehow pushed them to do such things by judging them at every turn, so they go deeper into their sickness rather than seek help? Or something along those lines??



posted on Jul, 5 2013 @ 02:07 AM
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reply to post by Bybyots
 


I have to tell you, it's been a lot easier living a transparent and open life since I quit drinking.



posted on Jul, 5 2013 @ 02:41 AM
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reply to post by Bybyots
 


I am speechless. What a profoundly insightful thread, you should be a professor at a University somewhere (If you aren't one already that is). I have nothing further to add at the moment, just wanted to express some appreciation.






posted on Jul, 5 2013 @ 03:25 AM
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Originally posted by tridentblue
reply to post by Bybyots
 


Wow, what a good post.

There was a movie (not safe for the family) by Bobcat Goldthwait, wherein a woman committed a nasty dirty act in her past, and wants to disclose it with her new soul mate so they can be totally open. The act of disclosing the act messes up her once perfect relationship totally. In the end of the movie, we get to the point, which is that we tell lies to make ourselves better people. We present ourselves to others not as we are, but as we wish we were, that we may become that. So in other words, not disclosing past acts, letting sleeping dogs lie, is a way we redefine our identities and grow.

However, in the context of everything we ever have done being recorded, that growth must stop, we can't release the past, we can't become new people, because we are forever tied to our past. So instead of the natural format, where human identity is fluid and ever changing, the idea that there is this vast surveillance apparatus out there ties us forever to a single point in our development, a past identity which we can never escape, and we end up living the same day over and over again. This underlines what a brutal thing blackmail is to people, it stops their ability to move beyond something they regret and become different people.

The whole Paula Deen n-word affair underlines this so well. Deen admitted to using the n-word decades prior, and apologized profusely. But her career is toast. Our society can't allow her to GROW beyond a racist view from her youth, she has to be tied forever to what she said. To me the message that broadcasts is "ever had a racist thought? Well don't try to move beyond that, you can never can overcome racism, you never can move beyond it." What a toxic message for the world.



A beautiful and thought provoking post - Thank you.



posted on Jul, 5 2013 @ 03:27 AM
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Originally posted by tridentblue
reply to post by Bybyots
 


Wow, what a good post.

There was a movie (not safe for the family) by Bobcat Goldthwait, wherein a woman committed a nasty dirty act in her past, and wants to disclose it with her new soul mate so they can be totally open. The act of disclosing the act messes up her once perfect relationship totally.


This happened to me for real. The short version with most of the personal detail stripped is that due to a mistake on her part, in her presence I inadvertently became aware of some very personal details of my girlfriends past, things I believe she wanted to be left buried. Things were going great up until that point and I saw no reason to allow her past to ruin our future, so I decided to let the whole thing be.

Apparently, just me knowing these facts was unacceptable to her, and she became distant at first, which over time gave way to increasingly unkind and even cruel behavior. In the end the relationship between two adults dissolved faster than even a typically unstable teenage romance..

I never did get a clear answer from her on why she left me, but I didn't need one, Mind you, this wasn't all clear right away, but it didn't take too long to figure out.





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