A supposed government program to control the minds of its citizens is a conspiracy theory recently growing in popularity due to the advancement of hi-tech gadgets. Almost every individual on earth is now a proud possessor of a smart-phone. The evident advantages of the use of a touch-screen phone are many. It is an amalgamation of diverse data, starting from a calendar to official notices in one little handheld electronic gadget.
My concern today is not regarding the uses and misuses of the smart-phone. Its advantages supersede the misuse and therefore no one can be discouraged from using it in our times.
I am rather tickled by the curious phenomenon of conspiracy theories related to medicine, politics and warfare. Recently, I came across a view that a ‘microchip’ can be implanted in your body when you go for a test or vaccination. This microchip would then function as a tracker, a surveillance device that robs you of your independence. This made me study the phenomenon in relative detail.
Conspiracy theories are nothing new for the human world. Although races have considerably combined and spread over the entire earth, the beginning of human civilization is seen as small clusters of settlements. Each cluster is therefore a clan. Anthropologically speaking, we are all descendants of one tribal leader each at one corner of the earth respectively. Now we call ourselves belonging to a particular race. Therefore, conflicts between clans/races are almost like the clashes between two prides of lions, routs of wolves or knots of snakes. So, credit goes to the humans for disengaging themselves from such territorial disputes after learning that we share almost the entire length and breadth of the earth as one piece of land.
Death and disappearances are probably the most common subjects of conspiracy theories. I wonder why. Probably, the human mind is incapable of accepting natural disasters for the good individuals. At least there is room for doubting if the most well known public figure had so defencelessly succumbed to a natural accident. Publicly acclaimed individuals are raised to a larger than life size portraiture invested with super powers therefore any trivial form of death for them is unbelievable. It is more because ordinary life is so full of struggle and strife that it is hard to believe how an individual can rise above the personal constraints and work for a public unless one were bestowed with super powers. In the same vein, it is also easy to assume that jealous people would want to trap and dislocate the public figure. Hence, the theory of death by conspiracy acts as a soothing balm for such shocks.
Genocidal denials and historical revisioning are also part of conspiracy theories. The aim of historians is to get to the facts of history, find out and compile an accurate narration of incidents in human history. But there are groups, politically or socially inclined, who do not want people to remember how wicked their forefathers have been towards another clan. This leads to an attempt at the erasure of histories. Many scholars have written about these theories. I feel that much of the hatred that is spread on earth is due to the increase in academic learning. All the ‘awareness’ campaigns lead to rage. More than smothering the spark of distrust, awareness ignites the fire of revenge. It is immaterial how after imparting a huge data on injustices first, speeches tend to conclude with an appeal to forget and forgive.
Mind flies and if the aeroplane and rocket have not satisfied us, we have found refuge in imaginary alien flying ships. It is a dream fulfillment. We dream of wandering off to other planets. Those who claim to have seen one such thing have vehemently accused governments for suppressing the news, a theory of conspiracy to hide the evidences. It is true that since we have almost exhaustively explored the earth we want to explore other planets. The idea of a UFO coming to explore our land and also perhaps posing a danger here is a psychological projection. It is perhaps even a kind of metaphysics when the mind, fed with scientific data, is unable to accept the presence of an all mighty god.
Some people claim that the warnings of global warming are a hoax. Can you believe that? To them it is a ploy used by scientists to claim funding for their research. To many others it is a fear and hysteria caused among people so that the governing party can be blamed for neglect of the environment. This can pave way for the other contesting parties to win in elections. Calling the alarm raised by scientists a hoax also helps in avoiding the incessant demand for a world government.
It is not at all funny to read about conspiracy theories. They can draw out the fiend in you. They can make you rebel against governments. They can dissuade you from adopting common welfare measures. These conspiracy theories aim to devalue the hard earned reputation of explorers, scientists, businessmen, technologists and leaders and in the process cause much harm in the society.