Imperial Illusion

If you recognized that each of these statements is false, congratulations. Your consciousness has been liberated from the the cultural trance of Empire. You are probably highly immune to manipulation by demagogues and advertisers.

If you identified all five statements as false, you may already be aware that each is an important theme of the Empire stories that we are taught in school and hear continuously repeated by corporate media. Each is widely accepted as conventional wisdom within mainstream culture. Each serves to align the life energy of believers with the interests of Empire. Each falls in the category of imperial fiction.

If you identified most of them as false, but marked one or two as true, take heart in the fact that you have a good start on a liberated consciousness.

If you answered true to all five you are in a deep cultural trance, along with a good many successful politicians, corporate CEOs, and not a few university professors. You do however, have serious work to do. The fact that you found your way here and are still reading suggests that you are ready to take a deeper look at the conventional wisdom of our dominant culture. 

Earth Community Reality

Each imperial illusion corresponds to an Earth Community reality. These are the Earth Community realities that correspond to each of the Imperial illusions listed on the previous page

  1. Civilization. According to Cultural history Riane Eisler, “One of the best-kept historical secrets is that practically all the material and social technologies fundamental to civlization were developed before the imposition of a dominator society.” These include the domestication of plants and animals, food production and storage, building construction, and clothing production, the institutions of law, government and religion and the arts of dance, pottery, basket making, textile weaving, leather crafting, metalurgy, ritual drama, architecture, town planning, boat building, highway construction, and oral literature.
  2. Technological Innovation, Creativity is integral to our human nature and is its own reward. This is evident from observing the behavior of young children whose creativity has not been suppressed and of truly creative scientists and artists who create because that is who they are. War does motivate technological advances and these often eventurally produce civilian benefits. Most of all, however, its advances kill, maim and destry creative potential on a massive scale and divert the creative energy of the species from life-serving innovation to life-destructive innovation.
  3. U.S. Democracy. The United States was founded as a plutocracy with a Constitution designed to secure the rights and power of a land-owning aristocracy. The Constitution even explicitly sanctioned the institution of slavery and made no provision for the rights or political participation of women and people of color. Progress toward securing the rights and political participation of all people has come only through long hard struggle and much remains to be done. To this day, the Supreme Court gives nine appointed members of the plutocracy the ability to veto challenges the the special rights and privileges of corporations and the owners of property–even though it may enjoy the overwhelming support of the majority of voters.  
  4. Money. Money is an illusion of no value or meaning outside the human mind that is created out of nothing by a system designed to allocate it to those who already have it, thus growing the inequality that is a major source of social tension and breakdown. Far from being a reward for creating real value for society, most big fortunes are the product of speculation, the exercise of monopoly power, government handouts to rich corporations, or financial fraud and manipulation. 
  5. Market Regulation. It is well established in market theory, in contrast to the ideology of market fundamentalism, that markets must have clear and enforceable rules to allocate efficiently in the community interest. An unregulated market concentrates wealth and externalizes costs to create exactly the kind of socially and environmentally destructive global suicide economy we presently have.

You will find further discussion of the contrasting stories of Empire and Earth Community in The Great Turning: From Empire to Earth Community and in other materials on this website. In particular see The Competing Story Matrix.

Once you learn to recognize Empire stories you will note that they are pervasive in the mainstream culture. Largely accepted as conventional wisdom, they are repeated with such regularity that most people accept them as reality and conform to what Empire asks of them.