About Social Conformity

02 Jul, 2005
 None    Philosophy

What Other People Say May Change What You See

Conformity A new study led by Dr. Gregory Berns, a psychiatrist and neuroscientist at Emory University in Atlanta, was published June 22 in the online edition of Biological Psychiatry that cast light on a topic that psychologists have puzzled over for more than half a century: social conformity.
In the study, 32 participants were being asked to say what they see in a picture. Many of the studied subjects caved in to group pressure as 41 percent of the time they went along with the group on wrong answers ( the wrong answers were fake answers given by actors for the purpose of the test).

The study's findings show that seeing is believing what the group tells you to believe. Using functional M.R.I. scanners that can peer into the working brain, the researchers found that social conformity showed up in the brain as activity in regions that are entirely devoted to perception while there was no activity in brain areas that make conscious decisions. But independence of judgment - standing up for one's beliefs - showed up as activity in brain areas involved in emotion, suggesting that there is a cost for going against the group.

So the unpleasantness of standing alone can make a majority opinion seem more appealing than sticking to one's own beliefs.
The author added:If other people's views can actually affect how someone perceives
the external world, then truth itself is called into question.

After reading this study, the Prophet Rael made the following comment:
This is one of the most important discoveries of the year. It applies to everything.
From the stupid American enthusiasm to invade or occupy Iraq in reaction to September 11, or to reelect Georges Bush, or to accept torture in Guantanamo, to the way French speaking media and general French speaking public talk about us and religious minorities at large. Not talking about the acceptation of vague and stupid concepts like "god" or evolution ...or both at the same time...

Individually we know that most of the people have sympathy for the Raelians or the Jews , but when they are in groups, they feel that conforming to the groups "anti-raelian" or "anti-Semitic" position will help them being more accepted by the society. In other words "we are better hating with everybody else than loving and being rejected"...We know where that lead in Nazi Germany or anti Christian Roman Empire...not talking about the genocides of Huttus /Tutsis, Serbs/Kosovans, Russians/Chechens etc...

What is important is the official conclusion of this scientific discovery: " But if people are made aware of their vulnerability, they may be able to avoid conforming to social pressure when it is not in their self-interest."
This is precisely where the medias have a huge responsibility: to inform the people, push them not to conform to politically correct hatred, and educate them for more tolerance, respect and love for the minorities.
That's why journalists should be condemned, like the one who was condemned to death penalty in Nuremberg trial just for being responsible for the first German anti-Semitic journalistic campaign. And to a lesser degree too, the pseudo journalists like those of the Journal de Montreal who for 1 week incited hatred against Raelians for no other reasons than the fact that "they were different".

The world needs people who educate the public toward more love and respect for differences and teach people to think by themselves, to never follow the flock of "politically correct " hatred, and question politicians, religious leaders and journalists, when they spread hate messages. It is especially important to question journalists, because they have, without having ever being democratically elected, a huge and incommensurable power to create hatred and generate violence.

The Raelians of French speaking countries are in the best position to understand this, and inform the public. This information may be a positive aspect for the French speaking countries Raelians, who, after the defamation campaign of the Journal de Montreal, can really use it to inform the public using this scientific study and make people think twice
before conforming to "politically correct" judgments against minorities at large and us in particular. From a negative experience can come a very positive result. The Raelians from French speaking countries can enjoy this privilege of acting for the good of humanity by spreading this knowledge being precisely those who suffered from it. In other words we can make our own experience an educational example for the society. And raise the level of love, consciousness and respect.

Isn't this what we, Raelians, love more than anything else?