Some people have started to half-jokingly refer to my "Escaping the Myth" event as a "deprogramming" session. That term might sound a bit arrogant, because it sounds a little like saying, "You've been duped, but I'll straighten you out." Of course, no one thinks that he is duped--whether he is or not. (By definition, one who has been duped doesn't know he's been duped.) Perhaps a more accurate description of "Escaping the Myth" is that it's a "self help" program for those whose heads are still stuck in the mainstream paradigm regarding "politics." But that might sound a bit condescending, too. Contrary to what you might expect, the event is not about me saying, "You believe A, and you should believe B." As odd as this may sound, my beliefs don't really enter into it. Instead, the event helps people examine their own assumptions regarding "politics," "government," and even society in general, find any inherent contradictions that might be rattling around inside their heads, and resolve them.
Of course, no one thinks he has a self-contradictory view of reality. (I certainly didn't think that, back when I accepted the standard dogma about "government" and "politics.") And that's why I make this deal: if by the end of the day, someone who attends "Escaping the Myth" says he didn't find any inconsistencies in his own beliefs and behaviors--with that person being his own judge and jury--then I give him his money back, without question or argument. But still, why would people want to go, if they don't think their view of the world needs "fixing"? I know the "old me" wouldn't be interested. I already knew what was real (no, I didn't), I already had a clear view of the world (no, I didn't), and my political beliefs were already the right ones (no, they weren't). Why go to the doctor if you feel fine? Why come to "Escaping the Myth," if you think your viewpoint is already the correct one (which everyone thinks)?
Consider this: So far, has your political advocacy (whatever it is) achieved the world you've always dreamed of? No? And do you expect it to some time soon? Or ever? No? Want to know why it isn't working? Or have you just decided that everything is hopeless, and nothing will ever fix the world? Well dang, if that's how you view the future of your own political philosophy, what could you possibly have to lose by attending "Escaping the Myth"? (If it doesn't change how you see the world, you don't even lose your $60.)
"Escaping the Myth" basically takes what I went through over a period of many years, and distills it down to one day's worth of concentrated paradigm smashing--but in a gentle, completely non-confrontational way. Really it's just a matter of digging inside one's own head for contradictions and false assumptions, and repairing them. (Although that sounds simple, it can be a life-changing experience.) And the attendees do the digging, the finding, and the repairing, for themselves. I just stand there holding the tool box, and pointing out helpful places to look. The purpose of the event is not to give people a mind transplant, but to remove a little "malicious software" that has been sneakily installed by some devious hackers. I have no desire to mess with anyone's core values, or anyone's moral code--whether it matches mine or not. I just want to help people be true to their values and morals, because if everyone just did that, most of mankind's problems, and the vast majority of injustice and suffering in the world, would instantly vanish. And if you fit anywhere in the "mainstream" political discussion, I can and will prove to you, in several different ways, that you are betraying your own values and moral code, in a drastic way, on a regular basis--not due to malice, but just due to a misperception of reality. If you don't think this is true of you, I dare you to come to "Escaping the Myth."
As an analogy, imagine if you found an island tribe, and the folk there told you, "We love peace, justice and prosperity, and we throw a virgin into the volcano every month, so the god of the volcano will give us those things." Obviously, their ultimate goal (peace, justice and prosperity) is not the problem, but their means of attempting to achieve that goal is. Not only will their approach fail to achieve the desired results, but it constitutes murder: hardly something conducive to peace or justice. Well, most "modern" people still believe things and do things which are just as irrational, but even more destructive. Again, no thinks his own view of reality is skewed or distorted. (The moment someone thinks that, his view of reality changes.) That's why, if someone who attends "Escaping the Myth" can, at the end of the day, look me in the face and say, "My view of reality was just fine before I came in," he gets his $60 back.(*) If, on the other hand, you learn that you say and do things which go directly against what you really believe in, what you really care about, what you want the world to be--if your good intentions are actually fueling evil--wouldn't it be worth $60 to find that out? If so, here's where you can get tickets:
(* If you're already familiar with my stuff, and have already gone through "statist rehab" in one form or another, you'll still probably get a lot out of "Escaping the Myth," but it won't be as much of a paradigm shift for you. But I'll still keep the deal open, that if it doesn't change how you see things, at least a little, I'll give you your $60 back.)