“Forget that the rich are getting obscenely richer. Forget the troubles in Syria. Forget that infrastructure is crying out for investment. Forget that the arts are struggling. Forget that so many people are lonely. Forget that your community is being strangled by multinational economics. Forget that you work stupidly hard and will have to continue working for longer that people have ever had to do.
Forget all this. Just try to forget it. Just forget that capitalism owns you SO completely that it can suck you dry. Forget that, because you can ‘sext’ someone and the message will disappear after 10 seconds.
People, it’s time to get off the dope. It’s time for rehab. And that’s the distilled message of After Magic: religion, capitalism, techno-entertainmentism… they are all ways of drugging us up. As Marx continues, they are ‘imaginary flowers on our chains,’ put there so that we might think the chains pretty”.
(From “Religion: no longer the dope” by Kester Brewin)
As Kester Brewin said in his insightful post, capitalism owns us to the extent that we forget or neglect the sufferings of humanity in the world, having been drugged by today’s techno-entertainmentism. I think digital media itself works both ways – it can be used for social networking and spreading useful ideas and practices or it can be used for mindless entertainment and so on that distract people from the truly important things in life. One reason digital media is being capitalised by the modern economic world could be because many people who are stressed and busy from working for the capitalistic system to keep up with status quo might end up looking for digital entertainment to relieve stress and boredom, which may become a vicious cycle, unless they decide not to participate in the rat race.
This article kind of reminds me of some reflections I noted down yesterday about the world system, as follows:
Jesus came to bring a sword, not peace, to divide us from the system of the world.
It seems that much of the world system is staged or set up and marketed to produce mimetic desires of envy from the audience, to lure them to buy a particular product or service or lifestyle or image or status or privilege or prestige, whether it is religious or social, etc.
Any motivation to prioritise business transaction over people is ultimately shallow and selling one’s soul to the world system.
When we follow Jesus, we can’t help but come into conflict with the world system and mindset. Hence, Jesus did not come to bring peace but a sword, not to exact violence but to separate us from the self-serving, degrading and enslaving monetary system and power structure that demean, degrade and devalue humanity.