Emotional Intelligence | Stevehein.com
Peru, Singapore, Education, Efficiency, Brainwashing etc. (part 1)
Note I wrote this in 2004. Now it is 2006 and I feel less resentful in general. But for now I will leave this unedited version up to remind me how much I hated what was happening in Peru. I am in Argentina now and I am trying to work with some educational institutions. They do a better job here than in Peru, so I feel more encouraged and cooperative. I am trying to make a positive contribution instead of just criticizing things so much.
Dec 14, 2006
Today I took a few pictures of university-age people dressed up in uniforms. The first person was studying to be a teacher. I stopped her on the street and asked her what her uniform was for. She proudly told me it was for her "institute" where she was studying to be a teacher. I thought "it figures."
These "institutes" in South America, or at least in Ecuador and Peru are sort of like private universities where you go after you have been brainwashed in pre-school, primary school, highschool etc. So all the students are "adults." Supposedly they are also "free" now since they are all over the magic age of 18. Ah, yes, 18 years of brainwashing in whichever brainwashing system you happen to have been born into. But that is not enough. Now you need more specialized training so you can learn to be a master brainwasher yourself. In other words, you learn to be a "teacher."
So anyhow she walked me to the place where she is being brainwashed. When we got there I saw a lot of females in other types of uniforms walking into the same "institute." She explained that there are three "institutes" in the same building. One is for office workers and the other is for something else which I forget now. Maybe I was too busy looking at the females in their short skirts! I won't show you the pictures now, because it might distract you from the important message I am going to write about, it especially might distract you if you are a sex-starved or emotionally starved heterosexual man. But I will show you the picture later, so you don't have to worry that you will never know what you are missing.
Anyhow, later when I started to think about these uniforms I remembered that in Singapore they would make "adults" in these same kind of, let's say vocational schools, wear uniforms too. Then I remembered the tight clothes the male adults who control the system make the high school females in Thailand wear. Then I remembered the grocery store in Piura, Peru where they were giving away free samples and how they did the same thing in Singapore. Then I remembered that Peru recently had a president named Fujimori or something and someone told me there are a lot of Asians in Peru. Then I remembered that people told me that in Indonesia the Chinese are only 10 percent of the population but they have 90 percent of the wealth, or slt (something like that).
Then I started thinking about China and obedience and what is important in that culture. Is freedom important? Is efficiency important? Then I thought about what is important in a factory? Freedom? Or efficiency? And what about in a brainwashing factory? For example if you wanted to brainwash someone, how much freedom would you give them?
And what about conformity? Would that be important if you wanted to brainwash people? What would be the highest values in brainwashing system? In other words, what would be most important? Would obedience be important? What about allowing or encouraging people to follow their own feelings? What about respecting feelings in general? Would you want to ask people how they felt and really want honest answers? Or would you want to manipulate their feelings, to try to get them to feel in ways that would support and produce the behavior and the beliefs you wanted from them?
What about the values of competitiveness and cooperation? Would you want them to feel cooperative or competitive? Or would it depend on what you wanted? For example, if you wanted them to be more solid as a group maybe you would want them to feel competitive against some outside group. And yet to be solid as a group -- so the group would be more efficient in doing whatever you wanted them to -- maybe you would want them to feel cooperative with each other. But only each other, not with anyone who is not part of the group that you are trying to control with your mind control techniques.
These are just a few thoughts which popped up in my mind tonight.
Later I added this....
By the way, in case you are wondering what the connection is between all of this and emotional intelligence, there actually is one, or at least I think there is. One of these connections is the connections between values, beliefs and feelings. For example, our values reflect our beliefs. And vice versa. If we believe clothes are important, or obedience is important or efficiency or competitiveness, then these become our values. And our values and beliefs influence our feelings. For example, if we believe obedience is important, or if it is more than a belief, if it is a requirement in our schools or homes or offices or factories, then we will feel frustrated or out of control or threatened or insecure if someone doesn't obey us or. And if we believe conformity is important we will probably feel uncomfortable or threatened or judgmental if someone doesn't wear the clothes we expect or demand that they wear.
And all of this is more directly related to emotional intelligence because our instinctive emotions have the potential to guide us to what really is important for survival. As I recall, Mayer and Salovey said something like our emotions tell us what is important to think about, though I can't find the exact quote right now.
But if we consistently order children and teenagers to obey authorities rather than listen to their own feelings, eventually the majority of them will adopt a value system which is not based on nature, but on a corrupted, distorted set of values created by what I would call emotionally needy adults. We then find that those who are defining and measuring emotional intelligence are doing so within the framework of a distorted, corrupted, unnatural and unhealthy value system.
Here are the pictures....
University student in her uniform studying to be a teacher. Her scarf has the name of the school on it.
More students in their uniforms. They are studying to be office workers.
When you look at these pictures, what do they tell you about what is important?
By the way, when I was in a mall in Thailand trying to buy a cell phone one day I noticed that the female workers who dressed in the most "sexy" clothes were the least helpful and friendly. But those in t-shirts and blue jeans were the most helpful and friendly. It was the same kind of thing in Singapore, except there was almost no one in blue jeans and t-shirts. Nearly everyone was dressed in needlessly expensive clothes (or uniforms.)
These pictures above could have been taken on the streets of Singapore, in fact. But they were taken in Peru. This shows how much of the world has adopted the same values. Like Peru and Ecuador, Singapore also puts a very high value on titles, degrees, diplomas. In other words "education." There are private schools and institutes etc. nearly on every corner it seems in downtown Singapore.
So basically what I am saying is that if there is such a thing as emotional intelligence, and I believe there is, then we are annihilating it on a huge scale around the world. And what is left of it we are trying to use in the pursuit of unhealthy and unnatural values. We certainly aren't using much of it in the pursuit of freedom. For example, who has ever asked a child or teenager such a simple question as what would help them feel more free? Their feelings would tell them, but first, we don't ask the question and second, we don't listen when they try to tell us in the only words we give them or with the only behaviors we give allow.
A personal note about how thinking about these things affects me
More thoughts on uniforms (part 2)
These "institutes" I wrote a little about in the first part of this mini-series are businesses. There goal is to make a profit for the owners. They are not concerned with the advancement of humanity or even the advancement of their own community or country. They are concerned with making money for themselves.
So as a business, you need marketing. And what better way to market your product than to have all your customers walking around advertising it. So you require them to wear special clothes, called the "school uniform." Everyone in the community knows that when someone is wearing these clothes, they are going to your school.
This reminds me of some one in Australia. He was a primary school director. I heard the speech he gave the kids when they were graduating. He was giving them pens with the name of the school on them. Then he said something like, "Always be proud of your school. And when someone asks you where you went to primary school you tell them with pride, "I went to South Bathurst Primary school!"
Now this might sound like something a business manager would say if he were trying to market his private school so he could get more students, charge higher prices, etc. But this was a public school. These school authorities are so emotionally starved that they need to use the students to market their schools just to try to fill their own egos, not even to try to make money from them.
And the school directors always feed the kids and teens bullshit about how they need to "wear the school uniform with pride." It is so much fucking bullshit. Or what I call TFB. Total fucking bullshit.
Effectiveness, Competitiveness (part 3)
In the first part of this mini-series, I wrote a little about effectiveness and competitiveness. I was indirectly criticizing the people who are promoting emotional intelligence as a way to be more "effective" and "competitive" in the business world.
One of the people I respect in the field of EI, someone I would even call a friend of mine, has recently co-authored a book on using the concept of EI in the business world. What concerns me is that when I see books like this, written by someone who I believe has a high level of integrity, and I see them talking about effectiveness and competitiveness, I am afraid they have missed the point about emotional intelligence and why it is important to humanity.
I am afraid they don't know what the world really needs right now. I am afraid they think the world needs more effective, efficient business managers. And that their countries, which may already be the most powerful in history, need to be more "competitive". To me, this is like the horse in George Orwell's Animal Farm saying "we need to all work harder!"
In other words, I am afraid that too many of the leaders in the field of EI are coming from the business world, or like Dan Goleman, they have entered it when they saw a chance to make money. In the "business world" there is a certain perspective. People involved in this world think and talk about things like efficiency, effectiveness, productivity, profits and competitiveness. They really, sincerely believe it is important to be efficient and competitive. Most business people will probably quickly say if you are not efficient and competitive, your business will die, the competition will kill you.
But is this what we really want to teach children? That they have to be efficient and competitive or they will be killed?
I laugh because this sounds extreme. It sounds ridiculous. But aren't we really giving them this message, little by little?
And isn't this the message that psychology students will get if they read articles about emotional intelligence written by people in the business world? Or even if they read articles about EI written by people who have been influenced by people in the business world, or by people who spend a lot of time thinking about money? Or even if they use EI tests written by people in the business world? The more I think about EI tests, the less I like them in fact. But I want to write more about this later.
Going back to my visit to Singapore, I can promise you that the message that young children are getting there is that they have to be efficient and competitive, or they will die. It is a country of human machines. It is the most depressing, materialistic place I have ever seen. So let's look at their values. In Singapore, they put a high value on efficiency, effectiveness, competitiveness, not to mention conformity and obedience.
When I was there I spent some time with two human resource consultants. They wanted me to help them with ideas on how to give seminars on emotional intelligence. And they both told me they wanted to leave Singapore. To move to another country. Being somewhat more sensitive and interested in feelings, they realized Singapore was not the place for them.
October 28, 2004
A personal note about how thinking about these things affect me
On a personal level, I get depressed when I think about what I have seen in the now 37 countries I have visited. What depressed me the most is watching what adults do to children and teenagers. How they systematically destroy their inner beauty. When I think about these things I often start to feel hopeless and discouraged. I often feel suicidal and sometimes I feel violent and destructive. There are days when I think no one is listening to me, no one will ever pay any attention to what I am writing and talking about. No one will ever change the system. Then, sometimes, I remember I was programmed to think in negative ways like this. As Martin Seligman writes about it is learned pessimism and learned helplessness. Then, sometimes, I feel resentful towards those who controlled me and what they called my education. Sometimes this resentment energizes me to try to do something, whatever small part I can, to make people more aware.
Actually I feel good about my little camera that I bought back in Ecuador. It will help me show more clearly what I am talking about. So anyhow, I am trying not to let all of this kill me. It almost has killed me, but I am still alive at least for today. I appreciate the supportive mail I get on a regular basis. But what really hurts is the lack of a female in my life. Without a supportive female in real life, not just my Internet friends, it gets almost too much to take alone. Sometimes I think I will never meet such a person. Or that I have already met them but they were not free to come travel or work with me when they wanted to.
Then sometimes I realize that my beliefs are killing me slowly. If I believe I will never again meet someone else who I can love as much as I have loved before, or who will admire me or love me or support me as much as I have felt loved and admired and supported, then I think to myself I might as well kill myself now and stop suffering so much pain.
So then I try to tell myself I will meet someone else, someone will magically appear in my life, even someone who speaks Spanish who can help me here in this huge task of liberating South America from their Catholic, military style nearly communistic beliefs. Che Guevara is famous around here. You see his picture all over. But the people don't realize they are still not free. They still walk like robots into the churches and they still send their children off to be brainwashed. Of course this is just one part of the world. I guess I am here because I speak Spanish pretty well. And I can wear shorts nearly all the time. This means I don't have to carry long pants in my back pack!
So anyhow, I see how important my beliefs are. If I believe I will meet someone soon, then I want to get up and go outside and start meeting people. But if I think I will never meet someone, then why bother going outside? And if I believe that my writing is important and the work I am doing is important, I will feel motivated to go to the Internet cafe and post this. And today, I do believe it is important. If nothing else, it gives me a sense of doing something worthwhile, even though maybe I am deluding myself. But I really do believe this is important. No one else I know of is doing anything quite like it. And from time to time I meet someone who I respect or am attracted to, or both, who admires what I do even if they are not free to help me with it. So I keep hoping, I guess, that one day I will meet someone who is legally free and who still has the healthy values and feelings of children and teenagers before they are brainwashed. The trouble is that if someone somehow manages to keep these values they are likely to be damaged in some other way because they have had to fight the system for so long. And they have felt so much pain from being intelligent and aware. And they have learned unhealthy "coping skills". For example, maybe they have learned to keep their feelings to themselves, or to be cynical or sarcastic to protect their sensitive natures. Or maybe they have turned to drugs to numb their pain.
Anyhow, I am trying to work on a new set of beliefs and a new philosophy. Instead of trying to stay in one place and make a difference, as I was trying to do in Otalvalo where I ran into too much opposition, for now I will just keep traveling and trying to be a stupid tourist! And take pictures of the things that amuse me or provoke me. Laughing at everything has always been my most "effective" coping mechanism I suppose. Like my friend says, "It is all bullshit" so I just walk around taking pictures and watching how these "aliens" behave. (it helps to think that I am from another planet and just visiting these "aliens" called humans on this little planet they call Earth)
Then I will report what I see and what I think about it from time to time here or on my personal site. Then I will move on before the pain of seeing the reality gets too intense. Next year I plan to go back to Europe where I think there is actually a little freedom. At least I won't have to see kids and teenagers in fucking uniforms everyday! And there won't be so many stupid pictures of "virgins" and the "baby Jesus" and signs about Mr. Miracle Man (El Senor de los Milagros, another expression for "Jesus" which they seem to like to use here in Peru.)
Plus I want to practice my French. So I plan to go to France. Then to India. I still also want to go back to Asia. I kind of like the idea about being the global reporter/cynic. lol. I want to take some pictures in Singapore and Indonesia, because is hard to believe what I am writing about without seeing the pictures.
Anyhow, if you are still reading this and are a female with a passport and would like to come join me in my foolishness, please write me!! Or if you want actually believe it is not foolishness, but instead serious and important work, then there are serious things we can do too, rather than just take pictures and criticize. We can interview suicidal teenagers, we can help them over the Internet. We can write books and articles. There is lots to be done. And I am fun to work with. lol.
Here is my email if you're interested.
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