Sneaky Subliminal Messages
You Saw What You Didn't See
Subliminal Messages are a means of communicating with others by sending messages that pass below the threshold of our conscious mind. It isn't debatable that we have basically two levels of awareness - conscious and unconscious. Subliminal messages are designed to persuade you to act in some way that benefits another without them really asking your permission. Subliminal messages are planted in the mind without your consent or knowledge. They are invented to make you have favor for something or to persuade you to dislike something.
Subliminal messages have been used in advertising and experimental research (mental training). It has been said that there are only two types of subliminal messages. Auditory and visual. Our sense of smell can also have an impact on how we feel. One researcher experimented with scents of lemon, sweat and a neutral scent while he flashed photographs of different faces. Turns out people don't like stinky people. You will win more friends if you smell like a fruit.
Lemon Verbena Anyone?
Subliminal Weight Loss?
What Do You Think?
The idea of subliminal messages is rooted in Greek history. In Greek Mythology, Athena gives Nausicaa a message in a dream. She tells her to wash her clothing in a stream and this leads to a meeting with Odysseus and her eventual marriage.
In the early the 1900s therapists used a form of whisper therapy. They recorded audio messages that were picked up by the subconscious mind while flying under the radar of the conscious mind. The therapy was thought to improve distressful behavior. There are subliminal weight loss programs and I checked into the reviews and while there were several 5 star reviews (?) there were a dozen reviews that thought this product was a rip off. One person said she slept better but gained weight.
In the 1920s people were panic stricken when the BBC began to broadcast on the radio for the first time. The mainstream public was certain the devils voice was coming out of that box. People were very suspicious of the intention of the BBC and they feared they were being manipulated.
In 1957, James Vicary gained notoriety and fame when he announced to the world that he had found a way to prompt the patrons of the movie theater he owned to buy popcorn and soda. He insisted his sales increased by 58% when he flashed the message "Drink Coca-Cola and Eat Popcorn" for just 1/2000 - 1/3000 of a second. He admitted later that it was a hoax and he had lied about the entire contention.
Subliminal Messages In Music
Subliminal Messages in Music
Subliminal messages have been embedded in music. It is called 'backmasking' or 'reverse speech'. December 23, 1985 would be the day that would begin the historical trial of James Vance and the family of Raymond Belcamp vs. Judas Priest and CBS. The two boys spent the day drinking beer and smoking pot. They vandalized their own homes and property and then went to a local church playground. They each used the same 12 gauge shotgun to shoot themselves under the chin. Vance survived for three years and slipped into a coma and died.
Prior to his death, Vance gave interviews claiming they had been listening to Judas Priest music which caused them to create a suicide pact. Vance insisted that the song Better By You, Better By Me has a subliminal message that is hidden in the song repeats "do it, do it." when played backward. Vance contends messages in these songs programmed him and his friend to pull the trigger. In 1990, the case was dismissed by Judge Judy Whitehead who ruled there was no conclusive evidence of subliminal messages.
"I saw a subliminal advertising executive, but only for a second." ~Steven Wright
Subliminal Messages In Advertising
While the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) prohibit the use of subliminal messages it is very difficult to prove in a court of law. The evidence is too circumstantial. Advertisers will agree that the power of suggestion will create imaginary visions if you stare at anything for too long.
In 1978, KAKE T.V. in Wichita, Kansas got special permission to air a subliminal message aimed at the BTK Killer to try to persuade him to turn himself in. The hidden message was, "Now Call the Chief". BTK must not have been watching television because it did not work.
In 2000 during the Bush/Gore campaign an advertisement hit the air and while Al Gore was speaking the word bureaucrats was supposed to flash across the screen. The word RATS was buried in there instead. The problem was, whoever embedded that into the film allowed it to run much too long. The ad was noticed, and to date, no one has claimed responsibility.
Right under the nose on your Face....
Subliminal Messages Are Everywhere
Whether subliminal messages are legal or not, they are everywhere. We may not fully understand how the impressions work but the information appears to work by flashing images for fractions of seconds. While it escapes our obvious observation it leaves an imprint in the subconscious mind. This stamp is left there waiting for the moment that it can be employed to control you. No matter how you look at it there is no conscious choice involved.
Still think it isn't real? Consider this - Subliminal Advertising is a multi-million dollar industry each year. Your decision to accept or deny information could be manipulated in a matter of increased shutter speeds, scents or sounds. Your brain absorbs messages and information even when you aren't paying attention. Proof that you are smarter than you think you are!
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Bestselling legal thriller and suspense author John Grisham has always been a favorite writer of mine. It was time for me to let him know with a letter.
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