That was my motto for many decades when teaching magicians and mentalists about secret influence.
However in daily life, it turns out that some people have quite a different agenda. They want to use illusion to create truth far different from objective reality.
Today, this twisting reality not for entertainment, but to distract, disturb, and disrupt, is becoming a norm.
Decades ago my verbal influence work known as Wonder Words was released. At that time movie and television companies, politicians and attorneys, bought Wonder Words. I was pleased by this, as I knew my work was making the rounds in important places. I understood that entertainment could be used to shape public thought in positive, productive ways.
I also knew powerful influence tools made easy and accessible had the capacity to be misused by some. This is why I directly stated in Wonder Words that these tools were not intended to be used to trick fellow human beings. I made it plain that I was against all such deception and negative influence.
Every day now I see how influence principles are being used against people to believe in ideas that harm themselves. I see how special wording is applied to get people to accept things that would be plainly against their own well being, if it were not for the use of secret verbal influence.
So now, from time to time, I will point out a few tactics on this blog. I am sure various political, social, media or religious organizations will think I am directing these exposures at them specifically. That is not the case. I will be pointing out common language deceptions and secret influence I see taking place that turn people away from reason, and get people to agree to harm themselves and others. I am flatly against that, no matter what “side” you happen to feel that you are on. That is all.
One of the easiest tools in the world to abuse comes under the heading of questions.
Among the easiest question tricks is that of implied meaning. This tactic is when you want to make accusations, even if they are completely unfounded in reality, and get people to believe them. To do this is quite simple. All you need do is make your accusatory statement or state your idea, no matter how bizarre, then turn this statement into a question. For instance:
“The media is spying on you” is phrased “Is the media secretly spying on you?”
Now headlines and breaking news graphics all over the country will start “reporting” (or rather repeating) this idea.
Breaking News: Is the media secretly spying on you?
Of course, surely the media “reporting” this is not spying on you! But those other media outlets, that have a different point of view, surely they must be spying on you!
Let’s look at another example. As a toy manufacturer you want customers in your country to buy only from you. But many customers are buying toys from other countries. You want to directly suggest to people that buying toys from other places is a threat.
“Are toys made in other countries killing you?”
Well, of course they are, we think, while seeing this news on our mobile phones made in another country.
At the same time we as a toy manufacturer do not like that our government forces us to make our toys safer for customers. We would make even greater profits if our own toys didn’t have to be safe. So we want to stop the government from making us sell safe toys. What can we do? Easy! We want to get people to believe that we shouldn’t have to abide by safety measures the government makes us have to sell safe toys. We turn our statement into a question:
“Should the government be in the toy business? Is that where you want your hard earned tax money to go, in toys?”
Just like that, we get to argue against unsafe toys, while insisting we should get to make our own toys less safe.
If you were a tyrant and did not want to be questioned at all, you would not have to create a law to stop subjects from questioning you. All you would need to say is:
“Are those who question my rule trying to keep you from all the good I want to give to my people?”
Before you know it, many people are arguing for the tyrant to go unquestioned. He is not to be challenged in any way, shape or form.
This is why you must learn about such sneaky deceptions. It is easy to get caught up emotionally in these statements when they are made in covertly influential ways. It is easy to be persuaded against good sense and your own best interests.
Sneaky tools applied to the performance of a magic trick, or mentalism effect, is one thing. Using these tools to trick your fellow human beings into falling for whatever you want them to think and feel is something else entirely.
Perhaps one of the greatest deceptions is this one:
“Do you think those who swear to tell you the truth are secretly joining together to lie to you?”
If you can get people to doubt that the majority of truth-telling is fake, and that made-up arguments are the only true reality, then there is no stopping you, now is there? You can say whatever you want, make people believe whatever you want them to believe, and force them to ignore all reports to the contrary.
That is an extreme example, and in time, people eventually do see that the Emperor has no clothes. But historically, many people allow themselves to be harmed, or to harm others, believe in nonsensical ideas, fight, die, or starve to death, to help their leader unquestionably, due to deceptively influential phrasing.
We do not need to unquestionably believe statements made in the form of a question.
Doing so can be dangerous to your health, the health of nations, institutions, and humanity as a whole.
Now, do you think others will feel the need to attack me for exposing such influence tricks?
Do you think you might be better off considering whether or not the Question Deception is being used on you instead?
I remind you, these statements are not about one belief against another, one system over another, one country, part, religion or race, against another. My point is to make you aware of possible deceptive influence. This is just a start, but a little piece at a time can bring little peace at a time, if we are willing to look more deeply into surface appearances.