Sheeple: Why You Should Feel Sorry For Them

Pic: Luxamart (CC)

Pic: Luxamart (CC)

Brandon Smith writes at Alt-Market.com:

To live a life of endless acceptance is to live a life of meaningless obscurity. When one arrives at his deathbed, does he want to reflect on all of his regrets or all of his accomplishments? Most of us would rather find joy than sadness when looking back over our past. For sheeple, though, this will not be possible — for what have they ever done besides conform? What will they have left behind except a world worse off than when they were born? What will they have accomplished, but more pain and struggle for future generations? In the end, what have their lives really been worth?

I cannot imagine a torture more vicious and terrifying than to realize in the face of one’s final days that one wasted his entire life trying to please the plethora of idiots around him, instead of educating them and himself and molding tomorrow for the better. I cannot imagine a punishment more severe than to spend the majority of one’s years as a slave without even knowing it. I cannot imagine an existence more deserving of pity and remorse than that of the sheeple.

Read more here.

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  • BuzzCoastin

    sheeple are so consummed by programming
    they’ll never know what they missed

    • Andrew

      There is no enlightenment without compassion.

      • BuzzCoastin

        sea above or below
        the post had another way to go

      • Calypso_1

        I disagree.

        • Andrew

          Please elucidate upon such “enlightenment.”

          • mannyfurious

            Well if you can be enlightened without compassion, you get the best of both worlds, now, don’t you? You get the reward without the struggle. It’s a nice idea for some people.

          • Rhoid Rager

            Compassion isn’t compassion if it’s a struggle. It simply is.

          • Andrew

            Wrong. Compassion without struggle–feeling the pain of others (emotion) and/or working for justice (reason)–is not compassion.

          • Rhoid Rager

            That was uncharacteristically curt of you, Andrew. ;)
            I believe it’s quite a struggle to not feel compassion–it requires constant distraction, stifling of intuition, second-guessing, considerable efforts to distance one’s self from others in every sense of the word ‘distance’, and the most consuming of activities–self-deception.

          • Cortacespedes

            All the key attributes of “civilization”, it would seem.

          • American Cannibal

            One of the most difficult tasks in life is learning how to have empathy for oneself, and for most it’s a lifelong endeavor if it’s begun at all. That is the struggle for compassion. Once a person attains compassion for their own nature, they simply have compassion for all others. At least, that has been my experience.

            There is no hope for enlightenment without compassion. And I do believe enlightenment is merely a hope, but not a terribly bad hope to have.

          • Calypso_1

            I do not see enlightenment as solely an experience of relationship between sentient beings necessitating compassion. One can experience enlightenment with a rock or sunbeam.

          • Rhoid Rager

            Many of the personal traits we value are simply reflections of how other similarly flawed individuals want us to behave. Many schools of philosophy are absolutely hinged on the pre-existence of a socializing mind.

      • Rhoid Rager

        There is no enlightenment.

  • BuzzCoastin

    it’s a fact not a judgement
    sometimes a whack on the head
    can be enlightening

    all life is sorrowful
    but very entertaining

    • Andrew

      I agree that a whack on the head can be most enlightening. But those who see themselves fit to administer such whacks are usually those most in need of them.

      • Cortacespedes

        But then you wind up in the land of the “never ending loop of whacks.” Not unlike that New Order video of yore.

        • Andrew

          Especially if you administer whacks to yourself.

          There’s a reason they call whacking off “self abuse.”

      • BuzzCoastin

        if stating a fact is a wack
        then it’s not the stater fault

        • echar

          It is is the person wants to be a victim. Which may provide a payoff.

          Example:

          How dare you call me out as a victim.

          Translation:
          I am out of my comfort zone.

          • Andrew

            I think you mean playing the victim, not actually being a victim.

          • echar

            I think you may have misunderstood what Buzz had to say.

          • Andrew

            I think I still do.

            Not the first time, not the last. :/

          • echar

            Maybe I am misunderstaning. It’s not that important.

        • Andrew

          > fact

          • BuzzCoastin

            good one walter

  • American Cannibal

    Can’t Obama see this? They use Sheeple… the military-industrial-complex is made out of SHEEPLE!!! AHHH!!

  • InfvoCuernos

    Just tell me where to line up for my free shit.

  • ÿ

    Intriguing postulate…

    But survey says no.

  • HCE

    This article reeks of arrogance and ego. I used to feel the way the author did, but the constant judgement, arrogance and smug superiority (perceived) only made me sick and angry. I still am aware of the credulous, but I don’t care to judge or criticize. Rather I quietly go about my life and let them do what they choose.

    You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make them think.

    • Dingbert

      As Whittaker Chambers said, “From almost any page . . . a voice can be heard, from painful necessity, commanding: ‘To the gas chambers–go!'”
      He was talking about Atlas Shrugged, but it goes for this article, too.

    • Frater Isla

      You’d be arrogant, too, if you knew THE ABSOLUTE TRUTH!!

      You are obviously a sheeple, and anyone labeled “sheeple” can be immediately dismissed, so.. Nanana. I can’t heeeear you.

      • echar

        Only sheeple think like that.

    • James Nimmons

      soo you mean you do nothing..change nothing..good one.. justify being satisfied with the status quo all you want. wont make you right.

  • Dingbert
  • mannyfurious

    Who I really feel sorry for are people who use the term “sheeple” without a hint of irony…..

    • James Nimmons

      why be ironic..there certainly are sheeple out there..there is no need to pretend like there isnt..

  • Virtually Yours

    So the author is a so-called “prepper” and he is pissed about their portrayal in the media. While I disagree with his overall tone, he does make a few interesting points: “the characteristic that absolutely defines a sheeple is not necessarily a lack of knowledge, but an unwillingness to consider or embrace obvious logic or truth in order to protect their egos and biases from harm. A sheeple’s mindset is driven by self centered motives.” Which is kind of funny, because the mindset of the prepper would seem to be (at least on the surface) somewhat self-centered: save yourself, instead of pitching in and using said logic to help fix the communal system which we all rely on to some degree or other. Ideally, though, shouldn’t we be doing both: preparing for the worst as individuals while simultaneously participating in and improving upon the network from which we all benefit?

    This line also struck me: “The destiny of the common sheeple is entirely determined by the outcome of wars and restorations waged by small groups of aware individuals — some of them good, some of them evil.” While I can sympathize to a certain degree with the whole “corrupt system is corrupt and therefore I choose to opt out” mindset, the fact remains: everyone’s destiny is effected by these “small groups of aware individuals” and their actions. There is no logical/plausible way to disconnect yourself from that influence, so the question then becomes: what are you able/willing to do about it? Do you dig a hole and hide in it while waiting for Doom or do you attempt to pitch in and make some form of difference?

    There was a great post here on Disinfo the other day (A Belated Reply to Plato: Is Democracy the Wisest Choice?) which also made me think about this concept of “sheeple”. There is a line from the beginning of that post which reads: “Alas, the average citizen is dumb and vicious. Hence Plato’s conclusion is that democracy is a fundamentally corrupt form of politics; it is the rule of those who neither know nor care about justice.” The authors ultimately come to the following conclusion: “We need democracy in order to be wise. This view does not make any unduly rosy claims concerning the wisdom of democratic decisions, and it is fully consistent with a pessimistic assessment of the wisdom of individual democratic citizens.”

    If the average (sheeple) citizen is “dumb and vicious” then we must ask: why? Is it fear or laziness? Because even if we could eliminate destructive concepts like wealth and power, we’re still left with fear of the unknown and the laziness which has been bred into us by the conveniences of our creature comforts. How uncomfortable will peeps have to get before they finally decide to pitch in and contribute? And for those of us “non-sheeple” who pretend to see some form of writing on the proverbial wall, shouldn’t we also be doing everything within our collective power to raise the level of communal awareness? Who is more to blame: those who are aloof and disconnected or those who sit up, take notice, and do nothing?

    • American Cannibal

      I think we already do do everything within our collective power to raise the level of communal awareness, but when you’re a member of an irrational species like homo sapiens, you got to make do with what nature provided, which, on the average, isn’t much.

      • Juan

        Are you sure this is a “deterministic reality?” Why not a probabilistic reality?

        • American Cannibal

          Ha! No, I’m not certain, but reasonably sure enough for today. So far, everything I have read and thought and weighed against my observations and others hasn’t convinced me that, even if we knew in fact this is a probabilistic universe at the quantum level, we still only experience it in a determined reality.

          • Juan

            Yeah, that’s how it looks for a lot of people, especially many scientists. But according to some ideas that I have been trying to get a grip on from other scientists like Goswaimi, Tom Campbell, and the guys who did the Copenhagen Interpretation/Statement, this is simply a belief with no actual basis in scientific fact.
            It seems that science is slowly moving in the direction that there is no such thing as objective causality and that we are indeed living in a probabilistic universe with it’s own particular rule-set.
            Like you, I am not certain, but to me, it is starting to look like we may indeed be living in a probablistic universe with no objective causality and that we can experience this reality as non-deterministic.

          • American Cannibal

            Objective reality is done. That’s what the Copenhagen interpretation of the evidence is all about and supported by most physicists. So we have accepted for awhile that subjective reality is it. There is no objective reality. So we now determinism vs probabilistic nature of the universe. My thoughts are that even with an agreement that Yes, this is a probabilistic universe, the deterministic argument has not been addressed, since the observer influences the subjective reality by observing, so must the observer be influenced by the same forces. We the observer create the reality, but we don’t have conscious control over how reality creates us. If this is a probabilistic universe and there was a way to hack into its fabric to experience this reality in-deterministically I highly doubt we have enough time or resources to prove it as the model, and later, learn how to use it on a material level. This gets into the metaphysical, which is always interesting, and there is evidence that the mind can change cells, nurture can switch genes on or off, experience can pass on memories, maybe help in healing and the like. We may very well live in that world, and some of these models may reveal it to us someday. That’d be cool.

          • Juan

            Maybe I am missing the nuisance here, but if we are, as science has shown, in a probabilistic reality, how does that fact alone not answere the question of determinism? It looks to me, that it indicates we are not determined.
            This does, very much, get into the metaphysical. I am currently in the process of trying a few things out to see what kind of results I can get.

          • American Cannibal

            Do tell. What are you trying out?

          • Juan

            Simply mediation and remote viewing exercises, per Tom Campbell’s instructions. Have only just started with that. But, I suppose the work I’ve done with ayahuasca also counts. Been on that path a few years now.

          • American Cannibal

            I have noticed a remarkable benefit from daily meditation, especially on my metaphysical contemplations, elevated sense of well being and focus, real tight focus. I found the act of stilling one’s mind broadens under its own power after only a short time of mindful practice.
            Tx for the ayahuasca tip, haven’t heard of it before, but I’ll check it out.

          • gustave courbet

            Very interesting conversation guys

          • American Cannibal

            Thanks, Gustave. I find this interesting too.

          • Rhoid Rager

            That’s why I come here.

          • Juan

            Thanks, glad you are finding it interesting.

          • Virtually Yours

            I have experimented with several different entheogens, but have yet to experience ayahuasca. I’ve read about it quite a bit and am equal parts curious/apprehensive. I have only had one bad trip to date (while on shrooms) but it was disturbing enough that I have not since felt the need to dabble. I read about a place in Peru that does guided ayahuasca sessions with a shaman…they put you on a specific diet and and you participate in guided meditations for a few days before your first trip. Think I might be down for something like that…

          • Juan

            Ayahuasca is most definitely not for everyone. It can be extremely difficult and challenging, both physically spiritually. It can also be incredibly transformative, sublime and loving.
            It is a really good idea to do as much research as you can ahead of time to make sure it is something you want to try. Also, it is extremely important that if you are going to do it, you do it with good, competent people who haven been recommended to you by people you trust. Very dangerous just jumping into this willy-nilly, for all kindsa reasons.
            It has been my experience, that shrooms are a walk in the park on a sunny day with your girlfriend; ayahuasca, not so much. Not to be trifled with.

          • Virtually Yours

            “Not to be trifled with” Absolutely! As a former (or perhaps temporarily retired) psychonaut, my general feeling on this matter is that entheogens should not be abused recreationally.

            “It can be extremely difficult and challenging” I have a similar respect for salvia, which can also be quite freaky and intense. They never went so far as being bad trips, per se, but the images that would manifest were frequently unsettling. I have read that Salvinorin-A (the active chemical in salvia) is technically stronger than DMT, though obviously it’s not a contest…they are both powerful substances which require r-e-s-p-e-c-t by those who choose to ingest them.

            Thankfully salvia does not last very long, but as a result of my experiences with it, I pause when considering the duration of a DMT/ayahuasca trip…

          • American Cannibal

            Sorry that I wasn’t clear. I’ll attempt to sum up my thoughts here:

            It’s one thing to say we are in a probabilistic universe, which is far from conclusive, though, clearly, we have evidence available to support this position, and it may very well turn out to be the correct model in the end. But for us, on the practical level of existence, where we experience this universe in our subjective minds along with all the influences that determine our every action and thought, we will always experience this place under deterministic conditions.

            Or, to be blunt, and please don’t take this as being dismissive but, Why should it really matter to most people that this is a probabilistic universe? We don’t experience it that way. Existence is ruled by mechanisms outside of our awareness, and even if we could become aware of this basic code in the program, and even if we percieve that we could control it, in the end, we still need to get to a point in our science where we can manipulate, use the code, in a practical way. Again, I’d love to see this happen, but I doubt humans will lucky enough to get there.

            Looping this back around to Virtually Yours original post above, since determinism is how we live on the practical level, we shouldn’t be placing blame on people for the way things are. The other sciences support this deterministic view of every day life.

          • Juan

            Ok, I’ll have a go at this. As I have alluded to in some of my comments, I have lately been trying to understand these ideas. This dialogue has been very helpful in that regard; so thanks:) I will do my best to respond to the question of determinism vs probability based mostly on what I know so far about Tom Campbell’s Theory of Everything. I should mention I am no expert on this stuff, nor am I a scientist, so you know . . . just another dude trying to figure out wtf is really going on to the best of my ability.
            This question of determinism came up in a series of videos that I watched a few times called the Holographic Universe. In one of those installments they had a bit where they showed through the use of an MRI machine and a simple experiment that a person monitoring the brain of a subject inside the machine could tell what decision that person would make a full 6 seconds before the person themselves new. This they said “proves” that we do not have “free will” and that we are indeed living in a deterministic reality.
            I will not go into too much detail about Campbell’s theory, I guess for right now, it’s enough to say that based on his interpretation of the data from the various double slit experiments, and the Copenhagen interpretation, we are living in a virtual reality simulation, not unlike The Sims or World of Warcraft, only much more evolved and sophisticated. I know it sounds totally nuts and is more than a little counterintuitive, but after I listened to what he had to say and read the first of his three books, I am tending to agree with him that his theory fits the data better than the Newtonian causal reality model.
            Campbell answered this question of determinism by suggesting that unlike consciousness that is instantaneous in its responses, our bodies are not, and they take time to get moving, so our “virtual reality system” anticipates this lag and gets the body moving ahead of time, in anticipation of what the action will be. Campbell made the analogy of video-lag in a multi-player on line video game, in which you are sending instructions to your player but it will not move because it takes time for the signal to travel through the network and to the player. Unlike that virtual reality, our virtual reality, Campbell suggests, is instantaneous because we are “inside the server,” therefore there is no lag time. But the signals leading up to whatever action will be taken can be seen ahead of time, as in the experiment with the MRI machine and others. It is still us making the decision.
            Another interesting aspect about this is that time and space are functions of our beliefs and perceptions and that they do not exist “out there” somewhere in space because there is no “out there.”
            As I said, I am still processing and trying to come to terms with this stuff.

          • Virtually Yours

            “a person monitoring the brain of a subject inside the machine could tell what decision that person would make a full 6 seconds before the person themselves new” Can you send me a link or point me in the direction of this video? I am (admittedly) skeptical of this claim, but am curious to know more…

            “Tom Campbell’s Theory of Everything” Oh, wow…you are the second person withing a day (of my reading it) to mention this. While reviewing the slit experiment, I stumbled across the Dr. Quantum animated sequence on Youtube, and someone by the name of “nielss4″ attributes the following comment to Campbell’s theory:

            “Compare it to a multiplayer video game, until you ‘log’ in with your character, the world doesn’t exist, except in ‘code’. When you log in, the world get’s instantly created from this code. Same thing with the real world. Observing is basically the same as ‘logging in’ with your consciousness. Quantum particles have this same codetranslated world duality. The ‘code’ here is the ‘wave form’, while the ‘physical translation’ of it is the ‘particle’…Yet it does mean that consciousness is not an outcome of the physical world. It’s actually the opposite, the physical world is an outcome of consciousness because it doesn’t manifest when there’s no consciousness available. HOWEVER, I want to stress this once more, this does not mean that we can change the world with nothing but our minds, like the positive thinking/spiritual crowd believes. Our minds just tell it to manifest, like switching the ‘OFF’ switch to ‘ON’.”

            I will have to read more about Campbell’s TOE…suffice it to say that I am intreagued and will try to keep an open mind. Perhaps we can convince Matt and Disinfo to host a panel discussion about “fringe” notions concerning the ongoing search for a unifying Theory of Everything. Cambell and Sheldrake seem like natural choices to participate, though if I could choose a third panelist and/or moderator, I would not hesitate to nominate Greg Egan! He wrote a novel (Distress) about a TOE conference which literally shakes the universe all the way down to its quantum core and back again, and he is filled to the brim with crazy and thought-provoking ideas. His hard science-fiction could cut diamonds and make Viagra blush :-)

          • Virtually Yours

            “But for us, on the practical level of existence…we will always experience this place under deterministic conditions” I concur: the quantum wave-function in its “pure” state appears to be random/probabilistic and then the act of consciousness/observation somehow collapses the said wave into deterministic protons, thus allowing us to experience the world as such. (In Quarantine – a fantastic novel by Greg Egan – users can download an app that allows them to suspend the collapse of the wave-function until they have viewed all of their options, and they can then select which outcome looks the most desirable. Needless to say, calamity ensues :-)

            Alright, so we collapse the wavefront by the simple (HA!) act of observation…fine. The question remains: once collapsed, why is this reality the one which is determined? Why these particular physical laws? According to the principle of plenitude (aka: everything is) this universe – and every other possible universe – are inevitable, which means that there are an infinite number of branching universes with alternate laws, and it just so happens that we are (for the time being, at least) stuck in this one. According to a TED Talk given by Jürgen Schmidhuber, only ten lines of computer code are necessary in order to simulate ALL of the alternate universe, including our own! So if these codes exist, where should we look for them? And assuming that we find them, inquiring minds wanna know: can they be hacked?

            James Gates has discovered what looks like error correcting code, embedded within the math of String Theory. So we can then speculate that the other codes may also be hidden within mathematical equations that are fourth-dimensional and/or higher. (I have been attempting to write a short story along these lines…eek!) If no other codes are discovered, then perhaps the error correcting code is nothing more than a numerical fluke/coincidence…or perhaps the other codes are hidden somewhere else. But it seems like a good lead, and one that I hope is being pursued/explored…

            Or perhaps there is no simulation and we are the result of a single quantum fluctuation within the original wave-function which caused an unstoppable chain reaction. It might not even be an uncommon occurrence…there could be numerous fluctuations and resultant multiverses, eviscerating the void with frantic spiraling fractals (one can only imagine what might happen should such strands ever bump into each other…a cross-pollination of cosmic proportions!) Some of these ideas are discussed during the 2013 Asimov Debate on “The Existence of Nothing” which I found to be both entertaining and thought-provoking…wish we all could have been there for the Q&A at the end!

            “we shouldn’t be placing blame on people for the way things are” There are definitely times when I feel like I am not doing nearly enough, so perhaps I am blaming myself and projecting that onto others…

            PS: “I’m not as skillful a writer as I’d like to be” We are our own harshest critics, but for what’s it worth: I think you’re doing a great job, and want to thank both you and Juan for taking this thread in such a delightfully unexpected direction :-)

      • Virtually Yours

        “We already do do everything within our collective power to raise the level of communal awareness…So why waste energy blaming anyone” Sometimes I feel like I am not doing everything I could or should…so perhaps I am ultimately blaming myself. If that is the case, then I apologize for projecting my own self-induced guilt onto others.

        Whether this is a deterministic or probabilistic universe, I am just trying to seek balance within it. My avatar is a picture of Jhonn Balance. He was talented and tortured, though his demons ultimately got the best of him…he literally “lost his balance” (while plastered) and fell over a banister to his death. His memory serves as both a reminder and a warning…

  • marvin nubwaxer

    sheeple is a remarkably dismissive and spiteful word most likely used by baggers and conspiracy theory wackos to defame everyone else not part of their cult.

  • Ted Heistman

    When people are dying they think about their loved ones, not ideological bullshit.

  • Richard Johnson

    well, someone has to get up in the morning, go to the fertilizer plant, put in their ten hours a day bagging fertilizer, go home and go to bed, day after day, in order that the philosophers might be fed.

    • 1captainhooker1

      Took the words right out of my mouth. Or close, at least. I was going to post simply, “Hey…you gotta eat.”

  • 1captainhooker1

    ….hold on…

    “Mooooom. We’re out of hot pockets!”

    ….as I was saying, these sheeple will one day wake up and realize conformity has all been a waste of time.

    • American Cannibal

      I feed my kids McDonalds.

  • lilbear68

    I don’t feel sorry for them, they are one of the reasons we have the nitwits in congress now and continue to be re-elected by them. boner, Pelosi, boxer and Feinstein just to name a few. fortunately cantor is gone now.
    yeah we all have our places, the homeless are there to scare the crap out of the blue collar workers and keep them going to work every day

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