“If you fake it ‘til you make it,’ then what you make will be fake.” — Robin Wheeler
What kind of person are you creating? What kind of happiness are you cultivating?
The Downside To Fake Happiness
Our culture wants us to be counterfeit copies. The idea is to present the impression that we are happy achieving the goals the culture sets for us. It’s a consumer-driven philosophy. It creates a need or problem and then offers the solution for an attractive price.
Advertising is just the latest installment of this strategy. It leads to purchase everything from toothpaste to ideologies. Advertising takes many forms, from selling toothpaste to religious dogmas. It’s the reason many people conclude that our culture is a carefully crafted fraud made to sell things we don’t need.
Be mindful of where you focus your energy. Your intent needs to be authentic. If you pretend you are something you are not, you will not find fulfillment in your efforts. By your contrived phony intentions, you will create empty and counterfeit returns. So don’t follow the crowd. Don’t be a fake person.
Being authentic in a plastic world has advantages and disadvantages. When you are genuine and authentic to yourself, whatever you do and create will be original and without strings. It will make you stand out. The disadvantage is you will stick out because you are not following the crowd. But in a world of fakes, it isn’t easy to be authentic. You can do it, but it takes some effort.
So, more and more people are finding their way back to a more authentic form of spirituality. That’s because religion and authentic faith don’t always go hand-in-hand. Not all religions provide a pathway to genuine faith. Many forms of Paganism have the fewest constraints over freethinking. With these systems, you are free to explore and develop your path. With these, you create your authentic faith.
By Pretending You Will Create Unhappiness
When you try to build anything on a fabrication, you become part of the falsehood. There are so many false information sources, from false news to fake personalities. We are emersed in a wave of falseness, so we cannot see the origins of contamination. The basis of popular culture is pretending.
“All my friends thought I was a very happy human being. Because that’s how I acted- like a really happy human being. But all that pretending made me tired. If I acted the way I felt, then I doubt my friends would have really hung out with me. So the pretending wasn’t all bad. The pretending made me less lonely. But in another was, it made me more lonely because I felt like a fraud. I’ve always felt like a fake human being.” ― Benjamin Alire Saenz,
Religion Teaches Us To Pretend
Western Organized Religion (1) perfected the processes of brainwashing eons ago. These social platforms use self-hypnosis, and group hypnosis makes them the wealthiest entities on the planet. These are the Abrahamic Religions of Semitic origin, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. But these systems aren’t new. These religions are the re-branding of Assyrian, Egyptian, Persian, and Babylonian mystery religions.
These religions teach us through indoctrination to pretend in several things. They teach us to pretend there’s a heaven. Then we learn that we need to belong to their institutions to get there. If we do, we can pretend that we are unique, chosen by an imaginary being.
They use this to justify acts of violence and discrimination and have a clear conscience about it. They forgive themselves regardless of the greed and evil they inflict on others and the planet. Their imaginary friends may even reward them if we are especially cruel to those who disagree with their brand of beliefs. Ask yourself, would someone who uses common sense believe this? Would an authentic person need to pretend about this to be secure in their life?
“Your religion assumes that people are children and need a boogeyman so they’ll behave. You want people to believe in God so they’ll obey the law. That’s the only means that occurs to you: a strict secular police force, and the threat of punishment by an all-seeing God for whatever the police overlook. You sell human beings short.” ― Carl Sagan
Don’t be a fake person just to fit in. Your innate desire to seek spiritual things cannot be quenched by following dogma and doctrine. If you follow a religion, you will create an addiction. It’s a substitute for a genuine spiritual quest.
Corporate Culture Teaches Us to Pretend
Today everyone learns to pretend they are happy. People “learn to project” the illusion they are successful. But by what definition of success?
Pretending enables us to fit into the crowd. If you ascribe to corporate slavery, you receive the rewards to the extent you provide a greater return on their investment. You must fit the mold and become what the corporate culture wants.
If you awaken, you may not want to work 60 to 80 hours a week to prove your allegiance to a corporation. But be careful not to be too outspoken. You’ll find yourself out of a job and no way to provide for yourself. You’ll find a bad reputation will make you unemployable.
“I’m for the individual as opposed to the corporation. The way it is the individual is the underdog, and with all the things a corporation has going for them the individual comes out banged on her head. The artist is nothing. It’s really tragic”. ― Marilyn Monroe
Popular Culture Teaches Us to Pretend
Overall, the modern cultural narrative programs us to live inauthentic lives. We fake happiness from an early age. We learn to look, dress and live the illusion of success. The mantra is “to fake it, even if we don’t feel like it,” and if you don’t make it, keep faking it! You can buy your way into a happy life. Wrong.
This type of mindset isn’t just optimism. It’s denial. Some resort to drugs to keep up the fake appearances of success and happiness, then at some point, we crash. We have breakdowns. We need rehab. Okay, then it all starts over again. Living in this type of constant denial is harmful to our health and wellbeing. Don’t fake it. Learn to resist commercialism.
Life expectancy from birth is a method most often used to measure overall health. The USA ranks 43 out of the top 50 for longevity (2)… Let that sink in—the world’s most modern health care system with the most food available only number 43? What is getting in the way of these resources?
“Only fake happiness comes with the compulsion to flaunt it.” ― Mokokoma Mokhonoana
Flaunting the phony attitude and illusion of success is necessary to distract ourselves from the truth. If we were to face the facts, we would see through commercialism. Shattering this illusion would be bad for big business. It depends upon our predictable and unsatiable buying habits. The reason this is important is that the critical measurement of commercialism is growth. It does not care if what it is selling is needed, only to sell more and more.
The Cost of Fake Happiness
Realize there’s a heavy price to pay for not joining in the collective beliefs and values. There’s no room for thinking outside the box. To belong, you must ascribe to the beliefs and values of our cultural folklore.
As we maintain this false persona and drive ourselves into debt, we simultaneously create a plethora of health issues. Trying to cover up unhappiness means we must be untruthful with ourselves. You can’t live this way and expect not for it to have consequences.
“Fake happiness is the worst kind of sadness”. ― Dominic Riccitello
So, can you be awake and still ‘look like you are faking it with the rest of them? Is it possible to live a double life? Yes, anything is possible. However, the price to pay for joining in the cultural narrative is heavy. It will cost you the authentic life you were born to live. The only way to awaken people hoarding and controlling resources is to make it unacceptable. Fake happiness is the worst kind of unhappiness.
Learn to question the cultural narrative. Learn to use your mind to determine fact from fiction. To do this, you must learn to think using common sense and logic. But, it’s not surprising that our dominant cultural narrative doesn’t want you to do this. That means you must take some time to study on your own.
We suggest using the full complement of analytical tools. Start with an understanding of logical reasoning. Then add the truth-seekers axioms; these will help you recognize the common sales ploys used to sell ideologies. And, lastly the toolbox for “spotting logical fallacy.”
Don’t Be a Fake Person
Take the opposite approach and be authentic. In this way, you need not pretend at all. You won’t have to pretend you are happy. And you won’t need to join with others who have imaginary friends.
It’s important to realize you will create yourself every day. If you walk with authenticity, people will notice. You find that your happiness does not come from buying things or belonging to a group of pretenders. So be true to yourself. Be authentic. Don’t be a fake person.
Are you interested in spiritual exploration? Check out the blended learning process at the core of our teaching process. We offer this curriculum through our individually tailored virtual learning academy and our traditional face-to-face sessions. It reflects what Joseph Campbell called the Hero’s Journey (3). Our learning options include both face-to-face and virtual learning sessions.
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(1) Abrahamic Religions, Wikipedia
(3) Joseph Campbell & Joseph Campbell’s book The Hero’s Journey, Wikipedia