- From the very beginning, we have worked very hard at tricking each other. That is really all that you can do to somebody who is in a godlike state.

In the early period, this was done mostly for fun or for the sake of a game. Later it became more serious, with trickery being used to entrap and enslave.

It was not one sided. We all did this and had it done to us and watched others tricking others as well.

This is not an easy area to handle because we have gotten very good at it. It is not always easy to distinguish truth from falsehood or see through the illusions. Even telepaths can fool each other with fake surface layers that hide their real intentions.

But don't forget that sometimes we enjoyed being tricked. A magic show is based on desired and enjoyable trickery. The magician fools and distracts us, hiding what is really happening and we are generally pleased if he does a good job at it.


23.1 Trickery

This one is a recall process.

a) Recall a time when you were tricked into fighting

b) Recall a time when you tricked another into fighting

c) Recall a time when another tricked others into fighting


23.2 Distraction

If you really knew what was going on, whether by perception or study, you would not be fooled. So a magician will shift his audience's attention so that they will look at what he wants them to instead of noticing what else he is doing. We often handle children by sifting their attention away from something that we don't want them to have.

Of course there are many other reasons for shifting attention. The idea here is simply to improve your awareness of it.

a) Recall a time that another shifted your attention

b) Recall a time that you intentionally shifted another's attention

c) Recall a time that another shifted other's attention


23.3 Confusion

A person who is confused will be hungry for some stable piece of data to focus on that will bring order to the confusion and resolve it. If the need is great enough, he will accept and cling to an incorrect idea without reviewing it adequately as long as it reduces the confusion.

Therefore, introducing false data into a confusion becomes a key method of manipulating people. And a sharp manipulator will create a confusion if one does not exist already.

Let's begin with looking at confusion itself.

a) Recall a time that you confused others

b) Recall a time that another or others confused you

c) Recall a time that another confused others


23.4 Pushing Ideas Into Confusions

 Let's say that a society is in a big confusion. There is a lot of social unrest, maybe a big economic depression and talk of revolution or whatever. Now comes the idea that the society is under attack. The confusion resolves. Everybody lines up to repel this attack.

The attack may be real, in which case it is a true datum, or the attack may be false, simply invented as a means of manipulating people, in which case it is a false datum.

Because of the confusion, people will act like suckers and swallow the resolving idea without reviewing it adequately. A good example is Hitler manipulating the German people prior to World War 2. He picked a non-existent enemy (the Jews) and jammed it into an existing confusion (the depression) and got people to swallow it.

Now let's just look at ideas resolving or reducing confusions. The ideas could have been right or wrong, but they probably were accepted without adequate review, so lets look at them again.

a) Recall a confusion

b) What idea reduced or handled that confusion


23.5 Encouraging Conflicts

People often work to encourage conflicts between others. They do this to gain some profit or eliminate an opponent or even for fun and entertainment. Usually the instigator tries to stay out of sight and all you see are the opponents in conflict.

One clue is to examine who might be profiting by the conflict. In practice this requires a great deal of judgment since people also take advantage of things after the fact, but you certainly should be aware of it and consider it as one of the possibilities.

This process is simply aimed at raising perception and awareness rather than providing answers. Spotting who is making a profit is only a first step rather than a final one in trying to trace back the source of a conflict.

The conflicts can be anything from heated arguments between people to wars and riots.

a) Recall a conflict

b) Who might have profited by that


23.6 Shifting Blame

People work hard at trying to shift blame to others rather than getting caught themselves. This is a great source of false information.

a) Recall trying to shift blame to another

b) Recall another trying to shift blame to you

c) Recall another trying to shift blame to others


23.7 Misleading Time

One common way of altering or obscuring the truth is to shift or obscure the time when something occurred. Joe hits Bill and then Bill hits him back and then Joe says that Bill hit him first.

Another common alteration of time is to say that something happened long ago instead of recently so as to downplay its importance.

This makes it hard to catch the lie because it is only the time that is altered rather than the events themselves.

People do this often enough that it is a common contributing factor in poor memory. Once a person shifts the time of too many incidents around, he begins to mis-remember them himself.

a) Recall misleading somebody about the time when something occurred.

b) Recall somebody misleading you about the time when something occurred.

c) Recall somebody misleading others about the time when

something occurred.


23.8 Altering Importance

Another common trick is to alter the importance of something, either downplaying something important or taking something minor and putting tremendous significance on it.

a) Recall exaggerating the importance of something

b) Recall downplaying the importance of something

c) Recall another exaggerating the importance of something

d) Recall another downplaying the importance of something


23.9 Invalidation [Revised: See Chapter 14A - Invalidation: 14A.2 Recall]

When someone is about to be caught in a lie, they often invalidate the other person in an attempt to make them doubt their own reality.

This is not the only reason for invalidation, so you can't depend on it as a firm indication, but you do need to be able to shrug off invalidation and not be thrown off base by it so that you can see what is really going on.

a) recall invalidating another

b) recall being invalidated

c) recall another invalidating another or others

d) recall invalidating yourself


23.10 Shame and Embarrassment

Making someone feel ashamed or embarrassed can be surprisingly manipulative. People often use it to control or distract each other.

It holds out a tantalizing promise of ARC while prodding at the person to change.

a) Recall being made to feel embarrassed

b) Recall making another feel embarrassed

c) Recall another making another or others feel embarrassed.

d) Recall making yourself feel embarrassed


23.11 False Accusations

This one shows up in a number of different ways.

People who have been tricked and now are excessively worried about being tricked again will often launch false accusations.

People who are tricking others will also launch false accusations in an effort to bring down their opponents. And they mislead others into issuing false accusations.

Here we are looking for either intentional or unintentional false accusations.

a) Recall being falsely accused of something

b) Recall falsely accusing another

c) Recall another falsely accusing others


23.12 More on Encouraging Conflicts

Again we need judgment. Efforts to manipulate are not the only reason you were told somebody or something was bad, but it is a very common occurrence. So you need to look them over.

a) Spot being told that someone or something was bad

b) Who told you that

c) Did they have a vested interest


23.13 Truth and Falsehood

Now check over your experience.

a) Spot something you were told that you found to be true

b) Spot something you were told that you found to be false


23.14 Being Mislead

a) How have you mislead another

b) How has another mislead you

c) How has another mislead others


23.15 Manipulation

a) How have you manipulated another

b) How have you been manipulated

c) How has another manipulated others


23.16 Evaluation

Here we are not concerned with simple evaluation where the meaning or importance of something is examined or discussed. All education is evaluative in this sense.

But evaluations which are jammed in by force are a different matter. In this case one is not allowed to think and it tends to make one both dumb and pedantic.

And if something is pushed down one's throat by force instead of being presented for free and open consideration, one should be suspicious of the data that is being presented and the motives of the presenter.

Sometimes it is simply a poor teacher who was himself educated in a forceful and unthinking manner. Sometimes it is simply self righteousness or fanaticism.

But sometimes there is something wrong with the data itself or there is an intention to control and dominate.

a) has an evaluation been enforced on you

b) have you enforced an evaluation on another

c) has another enforced an evaluation on others


23.17 Judgment

It all basically comes down to judgment, seeing what makes sense and what smells fishy. You have to judge things based on evaluating many factors rather using a single black and white rule.

Think of something that you were told which you have been uncertain of. Make two lists, one of things which seem to indicate that it was true and another of things which seem to indicate that it was false. Work over and keep adding to the lists without prejudice until you feel that you have all the relevant factors on each side of the fence. Do this without trying to decide on the truth or falsehood while you are putting things on the list. Then look these lists over and evaluate which side has the strongest indication.

If you have gotten a lot of factors and the indications are overwhelming on one side or the others, then you've got it.

If, however, the two sides balance, then there are a number of possibilities. One possibility is that you don't have enough data and it may have to remain unresolved. But there are three other things to check before you put the whole matter aside for further investigation.

The two sides may be in balance because someone has been feeding you a great deal of false data on one side or the other. In other words, one side or the other may be false. So check each side over again with an eye towards possible trickery.

You might also be holding the two sides in balance. If, for example, you have a strong desire for the answer to come out a certain way, you might be twisting things out of shape. So check if you have a prejudice in the matter and re-examine the list to see if you put some biased things on it.

But one of the common reasons for this happening is that you have mixed apples and oranges together and the list is serving to sort them out. You may have two disrelated things mixed together. Examine the two lists and see if there is a common delineation which caused them to sort out that way. Then reexamine your original question and see if you can't divide it into two separate factors and run two separate evaluations. Then try and analyze how these two things really relate to each other and how they became enmeshed together. You may want one without the other and maybe there is some way to do that.

Do this exercise with a number of different things, both personal and social. See if you can penetrate at least one illusion or trickery.

Don't go off half cocked on insufficient data. Remember that false accusations are the bane of our existence.

But maybe you can proof yourself up against being mislead and manipulated.

Chapter 22


Chapter 24