Just when I was climbing my way back out of the pit that is human foolishness, almost having re-established the hope that there may actually be intelligent life on this planet that walks erect, I came across this:
Of course, this story could be a complete fiction, but we have to consider that there are people who buy this kind of nonsense in print and believe it simply because it is in print.
Years ago I lived next door to a woman who had read in one of the supermarket tabloids that the ghost of Elvis Presley was in the habit of visiting women at night and making love to them. Not too long after reading that, Elvis became her undercover lover – a fact she revealed to her family and the neighborhood. While there is much we could explore about these stories, the most spiritually significant aspect of them is that our perceptions and beliefs actually do determine our reality. If we believe something is real, then it is real to us unless and until a more credible source contradicts our belief. Even then, our ego may keep us from surrendering our former belief – especially if we have a lot invested in it emotionally.
If my false believe has become a big part of my reality, then I likely won’t surrender it no matter how much evidence piles up to the contrary. Having announced to the neighborhood and my family that I am doing the mattress mambo with the ghost of Elvis on a regular basis, it may actually be less embarrassing to maintain my foolish assertions than to admit I am a fool.
I believe a big part of the problem is that we have a large number of folks attempting quite a bit of critical thinking without having ever learned how to go about the task. In all our concern about turning out students who can compete in the marketplace we have shifted our emphasis so much that we are, quite accidentally, turning out “competitors” who can be fooled by some of the oldest tricks in the book. Of course, this makes them poor competitors despite our best efforts. Anyone who works with the public on a regular basis needs to be aware of the problem and consider ways to actually reach people who may be carrying quite a few distortions of reality as Gospel truth!