Culture, Cultural Beliefs, and Cultural Belief Systems

Imagine waking up one morning, and, looking out through your eyes you find you are now Chinese and looking out at a Chinese village in Hownong province, or a Yanomami on the upper Amazon watching the river flow past. Not only would what you see be different than what you are used to, but if you were somehow transformed into a Chinese person or a Yano Mami how you comprehend what you see, and the way you understand it, would be vastly different as well. And of course it would be a totally accepted reality to you as to how things are. This is because most of us here on the planet are entrained with the culture we were born into. Some, very few, are not as they have evolved past their personal cultural trance state. This cultural view that is entrained into the subconscious minds of most of us acts as a filter on the lens of perception that shapes what we see into literally how we feel about what we see, and then, based on those feelings, how we react to it.

Wikipedia says “Culture is a word for people’s ‘way of life’, meaning the way we do things. Different groups of people on the planet have evolved to manifest quite different cultures. A culture’s way of life is passed on to the next generation by the cultural environment and cultural entrainment. There are some genetic traits passed on by heredity and the environment that create physical similarities. This further binds various groups to recognizing themselves as related. Culture is seen in people’s writing, religion, music, clothes, cooking, and in what they do.”

The concept of culture is very complicated, and the word has many meanings. The word ‘culture’ at least in ‘western’ analogy is most commonly used in three senses:
*Excellence of taste in the fine arts and humanities, also known as high culture.
*An integrated pattern of human knowledge, belief, and behaviour.
*The outlook, attitudes, values, goals, and customs shared by a society.

Most broadly, ‘culture’ includes all human phenomena which are not purely results of human genetics. The discipline which investigates cultures is called anthropology, though many other disciplines play a part. And anthropology is itself affected by its own brand of culture.

Humans are currently evolving into a time of recognition of themselves as another species among what amounts to innumerable other fellow species here on the planet. We are realizing we are an intrinsic part of what is aptly called ‘the web of life’. Worldwide there are large numbers of us that are starting to look behind the culturally impaired lenses of perception. The way we as individuals can do this is by utilizing our self reflective conscious minds to focus on the ‘seer’ behind the lens. Our conscious ‘thinking’ forebrains have the ability to flip our thoughts to a subjective level. We can think about why we think about things. It is from this place in the mind, in what resembles a kind of infinite space that this thought process happens and is key to a deeper fuller understanding of life, and possibly, the universe and, well, everything.

Compassion is a word used to describe a deeper understanding manifesting in many humans. Persons that can look through their personal lenses at culture as a ‘symptom’ of the human evolutionary process and not as a hard ‘reality’.

All cultures appear to have certain beliefs enshrined collectively in its members. Religious beliefs, racial beliefs, political beliefs and hundreds of others. These cultural belief systems are like little programs that function as the filters subconsciously imbedded in the mind’s lens that we humans observe our personal worlds through. We all have them and once aware of them we can begin to sense and ‘feel’ their influence. The key is to observe these ‘feelings’ but not react emotionally or physically. As they are not actually ever based on what can be considered true reality, for most people they soon dissipate. The beliefs are often referred to as ‘memes’ which are culturally accepted beliefs that often spread like viruses through a particular culture. When these programs are most rigidly woven or set into the cultural it is called a cultural priority and to break it is a taboo. Care must be taken and it is difficult to break any cultural taboos without incurring the wrath of the particular culture one is in. The reaction from that particular culture could be fatal.

Currently we tend to be living in the age of a ‘Global Village’ thanks to the power of internet communications. There is a globally connected planet wide culture that is growing steadily. These globally connected humans observe life with much more understanding and a more encompassing view than was present a decade or two ago. Most of the world leaders and the super wealthy still display dysfunctional world views based on older programming but those of us that understand that these individuals and groups are simply victims of their personal cultural belief systems are able to replace anger about their ignorance with a degree of compassion. “They know not what they do” or “Their ignorance is their bliss.”

On a cellular level view a single cell is widely accepted as the most basic level of life itself. There are only three ways that cells react when encountering another single living cell. One cell bounces into the other kind of attacking it. This is like a war state. One cell eats or encompasses the other. This is like winning the war. Finally in the third possible scenario both cells join forces together and cooperate for the common good. They grow and organize for their collective common good. This is the basis of life itself. A simple and obvious fact. Most humans on the planet wealthy or poor have not yet evolved to feel internally secure enough to live by a code of cooperation and mutual understanding or with empathy and compassion and remain trapped by their culture and its beliefs.

So on an individual level it’s on with the job of cleaning our subconscious lenses and evoking change on our personal views. The cleaner the lens the deeper and vaster are our perceptions. The patterns of life itself start to be seen as Blake said, “…through the glass darkly.” When a person’s mind is enjoying existing in a state of freedom from cultural beliefs and cultural belief systems all forms of life soften around them and the cultural patterns become very understandable and apparent. Indeed this understanding and clarity becomes meme like and spreads to others. This is basic truth leading to a quickening of humanity’s path towards developing a deeper intrinsic compassionate understanding and a integrated appreciation of life the universe and everything. This indeed would be truly enjoyable for all of us humans to experience.

White Brain Grey Brain

A Simple Model of Human Mental Functionality

by Harold Aune

“If our brains were simple enough for us to understand them we’d be so simple we couldn’t” – Ian Stewart, mathematician

“If you can’t explain something simply then you don’t understand it well enough.” – Albert Einstein

It is an accepted concept at this point in time that the brain is the main control centre for the human body, conscious thinking and subconscious awareness. Our brains filter and process input from all of the senses and are the most complex living cellular structures known so far in the entire universe. The brain has been studied and tested to the point where all its various parts and how they function are extremely well known. Our brains evolution from a single cell all the way to the multi trillion-celled current edition has been thoroughly traced, mapped, and documented through fossil records, dissection, vivisection and all modern scientific methodologies. From the cerebellum to the frontal lobe there are hundreds of well known parts, pathways and places each well designated and analyzed.

On the other hand most humans on the planet do not posses a simple mental model of how their brains, their main control centre, operates, and one could easily say that they haven’t needed one by simply making do with various cultural belief systems such as customs and religions. However at the present time having a simple way to model and help understand the brains processes and its relationship to individual and worldwide human activity is essential to the positive evolutionary development of both the individual and the entire human species. We need to come together on a new level of global awareness, acceptance and understanding of our potential. We as a species also desperately need have a clear concept of why we still have drives that are destructive to ourselves and our environment and utilize this understanding to rapidly evolve past these self destructive negative urges.

In a simple conceptualization that models how the human brains thought processes work most of the human brain itself can be simply called the “Grey” part. This refers to all the older parts of the brain, often called the ‘Limbic Brain’ the “Reptilian” or the “Animal” brain that we developed over millions of years as we slowly evolved into the human species of mammal that we are now. If you consider the timeline of evolution right through from single living cells all the way to our present form then it’s actually billions of years of evolutionary development.

The grey brain really runs the show, like some kind of cosmic autopilot that looks after all our body’s bio functional needs, those thousands of actions that it learned or was trained to do such as walking, talking, driving our car or playing a response type game plus quickly taking over in real-time emergencies that require quick response. Because we do not “think” with the grey brain it can be considered the “subconscious” part of one’s mind. It does not have or generate what are considered conscious analytical thoughts. Historically, in a fight or flight situation where response time is the main survival factor the human who wastes time analyzing their situation may not be the survivor of that situation.

The ‘grey’ brain operates in the “now” and it’s hundreds, perhaps millions of times faster and more powerful than the thinking rationalizing newer part of the brain, the forebrain, which in this mental model can be called the “white” part. Conscious thoughts, rationalizations, and thinking in a language or mathematically occurs in the newer white forebrain and does not take place in the much older ‘grey’ brain.

The grey brain has it’s inherent instinctual abilities but mostly is “programmed” by it’s environment from conception on through life. Most cultural programming takes place between birth and adolescence along with learning the normal automatic responses such as eating, walking, talking, playing, reading, etc. The grey brains ability to process and respond to signals, patterns, information, pretty much everything, is unsurpassed by any computer yet made.

With it’s incredible computer-like but much greater parallel processing power the grey brain handles more “volume” than any electronic processor yet invented. According to quantum physicists of today such as Dr. Micheo Kaku in his book, “Physics of the Future”, the processing power of the brain is not likely to be replicated by a electronic processor for a long time yet, maybe not for a hundred years or more.

The white brain, is where “conscious” thought happens. Not only can we think about pretty much anything, we can think about why we think about it. We possess a self reflective consciousness that for better or for worse appears to be unique to the human species. At this time in our development having a simple mental concept modelled on the relationship between the ‘grey’ brain and the ‘white’ brain can really help improve our development as a as we now dominate the planet as a species and are capable of creating and are actually in the process of orchestrating our species and many other species elimination and destruction.

As we develop as individual humans our subconscious grey brains soaks up and stores all the input that’s available to it. However this ‘cosmic processor’ is subject to the influences of it’s prior input or programming whether negative or positive, fiction or fact. In the book “Virus of the Mind ” Richard Brody jokingly refers to the three main historic evolutionary influences of the subconscious mind as the three “F”s , which he calls Food, Fornication and Fear. Food is an easily understood subconscious need as we ‘feel’ hunger when hungry. Underlying that is the core belief that without required nutritional input our bodies will quite quickly die.

Brody goes on to point out how when we no longer have worries or concerns about having enough food to survive and live that our subconscious programming still influences us. This influence is demonstrated by how we tend to treat our food in special ways, by decorating it, describing it, presenting it, and so on. In our developed western culture food is industrialized, marketed and capitalized on. The “food” industry is a major part of the economies of all nation states on the planet.

Fornication or sexual reproductive drives are programmed deeply into our grey brains by nature as well as culture. All living things appear to have reproductive instincts built in to their mental processes. Humans culturally induced subconscious sexual drives are also very well developed. All over the world cultures have taken sexuality to extraordinary levels including fashion, status, and as a means of marketing items and products of all types.

Fear is all about survival on all levels, particularly the fear of physical death but also what our subconscious perceives as our “identity”, often called our egos. Fear is the subconscious program that threatens us the most as a species. Most humans lack the ability to tell a real danger from a learned or culturally acquired subconscious dysfunctional program. Fears are programmed into the subconscious mind, the gray brain, in any number of ways. Parental training, school, education, media and conversations all can be a source of fear programming. Any experience gone through by a human that involves trauma, mental or physical pain will imprint the subconscious mind with that pattern.

Whenever a prior acquired fear program is next encountered or sensed there is an instantaneous automatic subconscious recognition of this pattern felt in the body as a physical sensation. Both a physical and a mental reaction will follow. Because the grey brain constantly filters input from all of the senses a pre-programmed recognitions of fear can come from any of them; sight, sound, smell, touch or taste.

When the grey brain senses an IMMEDIATE danger it simply takes over the required physical reactions such as ducking something that’s about to hit you or avoiding having a fall by quickly regaining balance or hitting the brakes while driving your car. A perception of immediate danger produces an immediate physical response in nanoseconds.

If the sensed danger is NOT perceived as immediate the subconscious grey brain produces a signal that is perceived as a “feeling” in the body and the white brain. The white brain will either label the fear or ignore it. This is happening all the time, subconsciously. Fear pattern recognition is a priority for the brain. An example “Don’t talk to strangers” drilled into a child can easily produce an adult with a fear of strangers.

Of course in reality the entire brain and body are all parts of the same system anyway, inextricably linked Entire books have been written about the biochemical processes involved with the brain and body and this piece is intended to be a very simplified description intended to provide a model of the conscious and subconscious mental processes involved around the human brain.

As human development progressed over thousands of years on into present times the more actual and real fears of our ancestors have lessened greatly, particularly recently here in the western ‘developed’ world. Plagues, religious dogma and war are, relatively speaking, no longer priorities or perceived to be such a major threat. Survival in general is reasonably assured. However at a subconscious ‘grey brain’ level these old dysfunctional fears as well any newer personal ones are deeply and subtly in place holding our thinking and actions captive to their subconscious influences. All addictive behavior is sourced in the subconscious realm of the grey brain.

Fear perceptions lodged in the subconscious, programmed in through evolutionary and individual human experience can be deprogrammed or deactivated. There are many techniques, abilities and counter- patterns that can enable humans to evolve past dysfunctional processed thinking and the destructive actions resulting from it. It is subconscious fear that drives both the ultra rich to hoarding, greed, power and control and also drives the poverty stricken masses to a state of being unable create comfort and harmony in their lives. Dysfunctional thinking does not discriminate between wealth or poverty.

A simple description of the relationship between the grey brain and the white brain is to imagine that the grey brain is like an elephant and the white brain is the mahout. All is well with the mahout ‘driving’ or controlling the powerful elephant until the elephant decides to ignore the mahouts directions. “I want a cigarette!” says the elephant-like grey brain and off goes the body to get one while the white brain looks on helplessly, or makes excuses. Maybe nicotine is a poor example as it has a bio active component but power mongering in all it’s forms is another example of a highly addict behavior reflecting dysfunction in the grey brains processing filters of many so-called world leaders and political people.

The ability to control addictions, worry or other stressors is a huge benefit to all humans. Clarity of mind and happiness are only possible when the grey brain’s dysfunctional influences are removed or at least recognized. There are many specialized techniques and methods that can be utilized to do this but generally over the planet it is yet to be appreciated as a necessity or even as a possibility. Most humans simply carry on with their lives as best as they can while suffering from a plethora of dysfunctional subconscious influences and lack the benefit of enjoying harmony and peace in their lives. Furthermore humanity is still largely subject to control by other negative cultural influences and is highly subject to falling prey to media based subconscious fear activation. Once humanity is aware of their subconscious dysfunctional programming, recognizes it as illusory, and has the ability to correct it, rapid positive change will take place on the planet.

Our remarkable self-reflective consciousness can, by utilizing any technique that brings the grey brain/subconscious mind back into the present moment, stop the patterned physical responses and mental repetition. A couple examples of these automatic dysfunctional responses are such things as worrying or stressing over a series of yet to happen scenarios or indulging in various habitual or addictive behaviors. Corrective techniques serve to reconnect us to our true source in nature, time and space and will produce what is best described as a joyful state.

Dysfunctional subconscious programming also has many labels. David R. Hawkins MD, PhD in his book ‘Power vs. Force – The Hidden Determinants of Human Behavior, lists some of these as shame, guilt, apathy, grief, fear, desire, anger, and pride. Moving beyond these labels and not have them color our brains processing ability is to move into to the levels of what is actually true perception, true power and a state of happiness and contentment.

In the ground breaking book ‘The Instinct to Heal’ by David Servan-Schreiber, MD, PhD the author presents many approaches used for curing depression, anxiety and stress. A key component to his recommended healing techniques involves achieving what he calls coherence. Conscious deep breathing, positive thoughts and visualizations are used to calm the grey brains dysfunctional reactions. Calming and slowing the heart rate to an even coherent rate is integral to releasing the dysfunctional programming by returning the grey brain to a in-the-present moment negative-emotion-free state of being. The optimal state for a human to be living in is to have the white brain, the grey brain and the body aligned in a state of coherence which allows our massive cosmic processor and the entire brain-body, to achieve a state of optimal functionality.

Meditation is a learned technique that helps reduce and turn off the mental chatter that goes on in the white brain of almost all human minds. This chatter is usually comprised of a few dozen topics repetitiously cycled over and over. This chatter prevents the white brain from discerning any specific signals from the grey brain that have been distorted by dysfunctional programming. In a meditative state the self reflective white brain watches its own patterns of thinking and helps reduce repetitive thoughts by recognizing them and ‘detaching’ from them, although this description is far too simple. Feelings or emotions generated from the grey brain play into the process as well, but anything that moves the mind to know itself better is a positive direction.

Physical exercise helps greatly by involving the grey brain in what it does best which is physical activity plus oxygenating the system and maintaining strength and dexterity. Exercise produces a feedback loop that benefits the entire human system.

There are several healing modalities that can benefit the grey brains functionality by deprogramming negative dysfunctional filters quite directly and bring back it’s high end abilities as a cosmic information processor that no longer outputs negative feelings to the white brain and to the entire human organism.

Kinesiology, a type of muscle testing, is an easily learned technique utilizing feed back data from the body itself to specifically identify blocks and negative programs in the grey brain. Because our grey brains are inextricably linked to to our environment there is an innate knowing of what is negative or positive for us as individuals. In other words we can tap into our subconscious programming using our body’s energy as a feedback loop back to our conscious mind to identify subconscious dysfunctional and negative programming. Once these programs are identified one can take the necessary steps eliminate or cancel the dysfunctional subconscious program itself. Google “muscle testing” or “kinesiology”.

Tapas is a healing technique that involves a type of self hypnosis that can be utilized to effect change on the subconscious level and is quite easy and relatively fast to learn and put into practice. By literally tapping on various meridian points and reciting key phrases relating to the programming one wishes to change, the dysfunctional subconscious programs and filters can be altered changed or deprogrammed. Over time coherency and a harmonious state will be achieved. Google “tapas” or “tapping”

Shin Jyutsu or JSJ is an effective energy balancing healing art. Through the knowledge of specific areas on the energy meridian pathways of the body and using the methods of JSJ, deep and profound change can occur. It is practiced by students of the art who also teach self help to anyone who is interested. Google “Jin Shin Jyutsu”

We can all recognize our personal individuality as our unique representation of the all-encompassing consciousness that our species actually represents. We humans are both individually and collectively natures way of knowing itself. When we see a beautiful sunset or a flower we are the sunsets or a flower’s way of subtly knowing itself and appreciating itself. Once we as humans are finally aligned and coherent with being in the now anything we perceive will be recognized as part of our collective consciousness.

A flock of starlings wheeling in perfect formation through the sky well demonstrates the innate connectedness that is inherent in every species. The human species shares this same innate connectedness along with vast perceptions that are cosmic in nature. This interconnectedness is not some kind of all encompassing species wide belief system, but a way of being and feeling alive and in the moment with vast clear perceptions about life itself. This is our heritage once we as a species move forward and clean the dust of dysfunction off of our individual and collective subconscious lenses.