Apophenia

We often to see and hear things that don’t exist. Not always, and we usually catch such mistakes before they hurt us. But, WAY too often.

This ‘ability’ comes from the way God created us. And, we need this capacity to see patterns in the midst of chaos. Learning to speak, avoiding traffic accidents and reading body language are all a part of this God-given skill.

Unfortunately, when we want a certain thing to be true badly enough, we’ll distort our ability to see patterns into something closer to mental illness. It’s what our society is doing, and we call it apophenia.

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Apophenia

Apophenia is the human tendency to perceive meaningful patterns within random or unrelated information. If you see a face in the clouds or a giraffe on your wallpaper, that’s apophenia. It’s natural and even fun. But, it stops being benign when you can’t stop doing it.

In fact, if it goes too far, you might become schizophrenic or discover the theory of evolution.

Unfortunately, our society is pushing us right past apophenia and into schizoid delusion. Social media and search engines put us in bubbles that reinforce patterns of belief. Our work and education environments reward ‘good thoughts’ and punish ‘bad thoughts’. And, the mainstream media tell us what we want to hear. And, all of that is part of why our world has become so bizarre.

Take CNN as an example. The Project Veritas expose of that foul organization demonstrated that they actually believe the garbage that they’ve been spouting. When James O’Keefe recorded their daily meetings, it became clear that they were all ‘true believers’. They really believe in Climate Change, Orange Hitler, the Fine People Hoax and the Armed Insurrection.

Everyone at CNN is suffering a bad case of apophenia

(or, you can’t work there)

If you watch CNN long enough, you’ll get apophenia, too. In fact, if you consume enough of ANY badly biased source of information, you will go down the road towards apophenia. I’ve been there.

I remember how I thought about the Arab-Israeli conflict, when I moved to Jerusalem in 1992. I thought that I knew what it was all about and how to fix it, that is… until I was dumped into the middle of it. It didn’t take very long to realize that my ‘understanding’ was really a delusion.

That ‘epiphany’ helped reinforce the need to always ask this question:

How do you know, that what you know, is true?

We are constantly being bombarded with information, and a lot of it is a carefully packaged lie. And, some of the worst liars are those who claim to be Christian, while they lie to you.

For those of you who need a reminder:

There are no Nazis under the South Pole

The Earth isn’t flat

Essential oils do not cure cancer

The theory of evolution is delusional fantasy

I could go on, but I’ll stop there. Otherwise, we’d be here all day. But, there is one other thing that I should add:

You must love the truth.

Without it, you will be caught by the lies that bombard you every day. And, this love of the truth starts with the love of God and a dedication to what He says in the Bible.

Oh, and if you want another look at this word, apophenia, read an excellent post by Edward Snowden:

Apophenia
How the Internet Transforms the Individual into a Conspiracy of One
https://edwardsnowden.substack.com/p/conspiracy-pt2

Snowden knows a thing or two about the price of truth.

 

I truly hope that you’ll be ready for this

A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished.Proverbs 22:3

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If you find a flaw in my reasoning, have a question, or wish to add your own viewpoint, leave a comment on the website. Your input is truly welcome.

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13 thoughts on “Apophenia”

  1. Thank you for this post.
    So true and so relevant.
    It seems there is so much information these days that none of it imparts anything of any use to us. It just all becomes ‘noise’.
    Not helpful in these times of collective madness…..
    The truth community are as bad as the mainstream right now.
    I used to be a part of the New age deception. Not any more. Thank The Lord Jesus Christ.
    I am praying for your health and wellbeing, and for your wife’s.
    May God bless you both

    Reply
  2. I’d be interested in your thoughts about the “strong delusion” referred to in 1 Thessalonians 2:11. What might that be? While evolution, Marxism, and Freudian psychology shape much of what is the modern secular-humanist mindset, they don’t seem to “fit the bill.”

    Reply
  3. John,

    Yes those NAZI’S under the ice and such rabbit holes and conspiracy theories I wasted a good chunk of my life and reputation on.

    As a matter of fact, I just met a Millennial flat earther the other day. A very smart Christian one at that. I briefly looked into it years ago and just don’t understand it myself.

    On another note, have you looked up this patent search # w02020060606? Here’s what all the nonsense we’ve been experiencing is all about. And guess who is behind it?

    Reply
    • Yeah, me too. It’s so easy to get caught. And, I think that a lot of Flat Earthers are caught by the Book of Enoch. It’s a delicious delusion because it means that EVERYTHING is a conspiracy. And, it’s just. so. stupid. And yeah, that patent number. Are they yanking our chain? Keep up the good work, Dan. – JL

      Reply
  4. An observation from Ann Barnhardt: https://www.barnhardt.biz/2021/08/08/you-gotta-be-kidding-me-mailbag-revelation-1823-for-thy-merchants-were-the-great-men-of-the-earth-for-by-thy-pharmaceuticals-were-all-nations-deceived-edition/

    The verse is interesting no matter which translation; the general meaning comes across. Back BC (before cvd), I was aware of the pharm/drug/sorcery/magic connotation; back when that was written they did not understand opiates the way we do now and they may well have thought a concoction of poppy juice had magical powers. I have also heard historians say that at the time of the renaissance, poisoning was a fine art and they probably knew more about poison than we do now, at least in terms of practical application.

    And I have always been fascinated by the verses in Daniel talking about a leader that was not what we would call elected, openly chosen, but comes to his position by means of intrigue — NIV:

    23 “In the latter part of their reign, when rebels have become completely wicked, a fierce-looking king, a master of intrigue, will arise. 24 He will become very strong, but not by his own power. He will cause astounding devastation and will succeed in whatever he does. He will destroy those who are mighty, the holy people. 25 He will cause deceit to prosper, and he will consider himself superior. When they feel secure, he will destroy many and take his stand against the Prince of princes. Yet he will be destroyed, but not by human power.”

    NIV is not perfect, I’m sure, but the general meaning comes across and I find it very interesting at this time. ‘when rebels have become completely wicked’ – that sure describes things now; ‘master of intrigue’ – yup; strong but not by his own power – yup; astounding devastation – yup; causing deceit to prosper – yup; consider himself superior – yup. I don’t think any of the elite players today look particularly fierce, but since some leaders were represented as animals in Daniel’s visions, perhaps the fierce appearance is illustrating the evil and destructive spirit in which he acts.

    Reply
    • Hi DRG,

      There is a many-headed monstrosity that has been operating underneath the surface for about a century – if not longer. The dimensions of this ‘thing’ is hard to determine exactly, but where it gets some of its money isn’t hard to find. And, I have met at least one person who was a part of it, and maybe others.

      No one talks about the Heroin trade, and I find that little fact to be very, very interesting. You’ll have big busts for fentanyl, meth and cocaine, but never heroin. And, it’s not just the heroin trade, but since 93% of all heroin comes from Afghanistan, it’s the easiest to track. And, pretty much every intelligence agency is in on it. At least the major ones. At a minimum, the ‘Five Eyes’.

      But, also the FBI, the US State Department…

      …and, the Jesuits.

      I can’t prove Jesuit involvement, but I do know of their professional reputation as the best intelligence organization on the planet.

      And, it seems to have all started – at least in modern times – with the FBI and their deep connection to the organized crime families of the 1920s. It’s a really tangled web of lies and corruption.

      At the moment, I don’t know that we can claim that this vaccine is a part of the Pharmakeia described in Revelation. It would not surprise me if it turns out to be so, but I would need more information before I agree to that assertion.

      Great comment, DRG. Thank you.

      Yours in Christ,

      John Little
      omegashock.com

      Reply
  5. Hi John,
    I hope you are in good health, our prayers are constantly with you!
    You are probably aware of the rapid developments in the Graveyard of Empires. A “Saigon moment” is looming in Kabul. And, it is a very rare occurrence to see how history repeats after 32 years. This is the moment I was watching as a teenager, let me illustrate it with a song by a band of Russian military veterans from Afgan (as the Russians shortly call Afghanistan). Here is a version with subtitles (a nice song btw, read the words, kind of ominous):
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Wv4Pe13CK0
    But my point is not historical – today I see another version of those events – an English/American one. And I remember that the events you see in this video preceded immediate collapse and disintegration of the empire called Soviet Union. I would not place my bet on how much the history may repeat itself. But I watch the events, and we know that entire world is watching. Conclusions are drawn. New policies are implemented.
    Yours in Christ
    Chris

    Reply
    • Hi Chris,

      I remember the stories about how much Soviet troops suffered in Afghanistan. It was terrible. As much as I detested the Soviet Communist Party, the thought of such needless suffering was worse.

      Now, it’s America’s turn, and she left behind tens of thousands of people who supported America, who trusted in her promises. And now… they die.

      What bothers me, is that this let’s China and Iran know that they can do what they want. The massacre of millions upon millions of Taiwanese, Indians, South Koreans and Israelis means nothing to the creatures leading Amerika.

      Worse, the sheer incompetence on display is staggering. The Soviet Union had an excuse for their failures, but the US? Like this?

      To the morons at the US State Department:

      If you are going to cause the massacre of millions upon millions of men, women and children, at least have the decency to be intelligent about it. Don’t insult those who suffer and die by being incompetent buffoons.

      Thanks for that comment and video, Chris. The future will not be a pleasant place to live.

      Yours in Christ,

      John Little
      omegashock.com

      Reply
      • Sadly, the US three-letter agency’s, et al, know not “decency”. They are of the darkness of this world. No light is in them. #WeKnow #GodWins

        Reply
  6. Hebrews 3:7-8  Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says: “TODAY, IF YOU WILL HEAR HIS VOICE,  8  DO NOT HARDEN YOUR HEARTS AS IN THE REBELLION, IN THE DAY OF TRIAL IN THE WILDERNESS,
    Hebrews 3:13  but exhort one another daily, while it is called “TODAY,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.

    You article came during some ministry we received which touched upon the above two verses. I was thinking about these to verses in relation to the effects of Apophenia. It spring from a hard heart and then is ushered into the deceitfulness of sin. It is like a person who divorces their spouse, they think that was not the one. Not realizing the whole time it is the hardness of heart, they convince themselves about things (the other persons fault), and then over time they ushered into the presence of the deceitfulness of sin. They are under the enemy’s influence and the thoughts just get darker from there. Only the light can bring anyone out of that. I have been posting the gospel on a number of discussion threads to articles. I keep telling people there is no solution that will come from man to solve the problem we are in. It won’t come from an audit of the votes. IT is a spiritual battle and the solution can only come from one place. The one who is the Way the Truth and the Life.

    Long time reader and appreciate your service, your articles have been helpful.

    FYI: I was the unsaved guy at the Tea Party in Chicago all those years back with my young son it resulted in a CNN reporter not getting her contract renewed. But the Lord saved me from all that.

    Reply

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