Silencing the Voice of Reason (Part 1): The Origins and The Mechanism

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

“Don't conceptualize reality as it is!”
In this series of articles, I will talk about people’s avoidance of reality, and about personal and social outrage when encountering a voice of reason. In the first part that is this article, I will explain the origins of a person’s unreasonable reaction to describing reality and the mechanism behind this phenomenon. I will also talk about the social outcomes of openly describing the unpleasant aspects of reality, especially child mistreatment.

All of us have probably been in a situation where we saw something and we’ve tried to describe or address it, but we were quickly shut down or realized it is not allowed to do so. If all of our memories were accessible to our conscious mind, most likely we would see that it started very early.

Children are born rational and smart, in a sense that initially they try to experience and describe reality as it is. Sadly, in childhood and adolescence many of us are not allowed to describe reality correctly. We are taught to “be polite,” to “consider other people’s feelings,” to “play nice.” In other words, if we see something that is disturbing or challenging, we are not allowed to talk about it if it makes somebody—mainly your primary caregivers—uncomfortable. This is a huge problem because a child is invalidated and traumatized in other ways for the sake of emotional comfort of others. To cope with that, a child has to dissociate and develop numerous defense mechanisms and unhealthy tendencies just to stay alive and relatively sane.

As a result, most people grow up into adults who either are too afraid to describe reality as it is or don’t even have the mental capacity to do it properly because their mental faculties are impaired or severely lacking. In the first case, a person’s ancient unprocessed fear of losing their primary caregiver is too strong, hence the fear of rejection and of conflict wins over courage. In the second case, a person was traumatized and malnourished to the degree where they don’t have a capacity to evaluate and conceptualize reality as it is. Here, the emotional reactions to it are too challenging to overcome them.

On the surface, your voice challenges such people’s belief systems. If you dig deeper you will find that behind it there is an enormous amount of fear, rage, and sadness. To routinely shield themselves from the painful aspects of reality, people continue staying in denial and attacking others if their voice challenges those delusions. So when you come along and say, “This is child abuse, and that person is abusing their child,” the person gets triggered and tries to silence you—the same technique that they were raised with as a child. Instead of adjusting their skewed perception of reality, they attack you for talking about reality. In their eyes, the problem is NOT such uncomfortable facts of reality as childhood trauma, war, injustice, corruption, murder, theft, manipulation, etc.; the problem is YOU talking about it.

In the second part, I will talk about the importance of having principles and how one has to stay unprincipled to silence the voice of reason—their own, and, by extension, others’.

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Related articles: 
Why People Deny Childhood Trauma and Its Results
Common Reactions to The Topic of Childhood Trauma
The Cycle of Child Abuse and How to End It
The Difficulties of Recognizing and Reducing Child Abuse
Child Abuse and Its Results in Today's Society

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