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It’s All Theatre

Tabloid press, reality TV, TV talk shows, social networking and, perhaps, increasingly also, modern-day politics have all got something in common – they contain similar ingredients to those found in soap operas. A trademark of soap opera is that the less exemplary elements of human behaviour are exaggerated and dramatised for effect. A hallmark of the tabloid press is the use of emotional and sensational language which draws readers into the drama.

Gossip and the lives of others had always been of interest to people, but tabloids converted sideshows into the main show. This growing preoccupation spread into other mediums, too, and eventually it went well beyond the lives of only the officially rich and famous. Despite, perhaps, a few protestations to the contrary, those designated as celebrities hardly shy away from being in the limelight. As the saying goes: “All publicity is good publicity”, and over time being famous has taken on major significance in modern societies.

By introducing “real-life” elements into the mix, reality TV took the soap opera concept a step further. Selected members of the public could now become famous, too. They would brush shoulders with genuine celebrities and, just like them, have large audiences observe and follow their every move. Taking a cue, perhaps, from soap opera, participants could spice up and dramatise their actions and activities for effect, bringing greater audiences and improved ratings with regard to the shows and themselves.

In these shows, participants were becoming adept at promoting themselves by sometimes being outrageous, controversial or provocative. Audiences were lapping it up and learning from it, too. Reality TV was hugely popular for its novelty value at first but, in due course, the concept influenced and was blended in with various other genres. Some of these shows, at least to a small extent, contain(ed) educational elements such as the celebrity chefs series. A particular type of TV talk show – which came to be known as “Trash TV” – preceded reality TV by a couple of decades already and was based on outrage creation and stirring up animosity amongst participants.

Initially, as with the tabloid genre which slowly spread around the world, not everyone considered the depiction of the lowest common denominator on television as being optimum entertainment. Many viewers actively avoided soap opera, trash TV and reality TV. The majority of professionals preferred to continue reading their broadsheets and magazines. Likewise, discerning television viewers continued to opt for quality TV programmes. On the other hand, more than enough readers and viewers were becoming eager consumers of dramatised and sensationalised entertainment and news media.

That humans have always been intrigued by the weird, the outlandish and the obscure is not in doubt, and an apt analogy would be that the modern-day version of “freak shows” increasingly came to town in some of these shows on a screen and in a newspaper near you. In the press, the tabloid media formula continued to spread and, eventually, even organisations once-known as conservative and well-established news publications adopted the model or blended it in.

Tabloid newspapers had already been using “tabloid headlines” for decades to prompt people to buy the paper. The “tabloid language” used in news content contained special “tabloid vocabulary” (short, emotional and ambiguous key words) to create intrigue which draws readers into the emotional drama. These days, online tabloid-style headlines are referred to as “click-bait”.

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By Jean-Jacques M

Full article is published at gypsycafe.org

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Copyright © 2016 · All Rights Reserved · Gypsy Café


What is Enlightenment?

The Wall

Theatre

Theatre has many objectives. It can entertain or educate or both. It can mesmerise or bring consciousness. It can motivate and inspire. It can provoke or shock. Theatre holds a mirror up to reality and can evoke inner change. Theatre can be evolutionary. It all depends on how we engage with it. By merely passively observing the play in front of us no (positive) transformation can or will take place. When we engage with it we can either do so positively or negatively.

Enlightenment

“Enlightenment doesn’t occur from sitting around visualizing images of light but from integrating the darker aspects of the Self into the conscious personality” – Carl Jung

“Knowing your own darkness is the best method for dealing with the darkness of other people.” – Carl Jung

When an inner situation is not made conscious, it appears outside as fate. You meet your destiny on the road you take to avoid it. – Carl Jung

What is the connection between theatre and enlightenment?

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By Jean-Jacques M.


Building the New World Within (9) -What is Progress?

Thoughts are like traces of Birds in Heaven

Berlin Wall, Germany. Photographed by JJM.

“We are living in what the Greeks called the right time for a ‘metamorphosis of the gods’, i.e. of the fundamental principles and symbols. This peculiarity of our time, which is certainly not of our conscious choosing, is the expression of the unconscious man within us who is changing. Coming generations will have to take account of this momentous transformation if humanity is not to destroy itself through the might of its own technology and science” (Carl Gustav Jung, 1957: The Undiscovered Self, p.110).

Jung was suggesting that we should not get completely carried away with technology and science, to the extent that we lose sight of ourselves (our Selves). Being unconscious and excessively distracted could preclude us from doing just that, because without taking stock of ourselves from time to time, there can be no self-awareness and without self-awareness there can be no self-knowledge. Without self-knowledge, we would not become aware of “the unconscious man within us changing“. This change that Jung was referring to was related to the collective unconscious of humanity entering into a time of transition, the faint beginnings of which he could already sense in 1957.

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[4122 words]

by Jean-Jacques @ Gypsy Café

© 2016. All Rights Reserved. Gypsycafe.org


Building the New World Within (8) – From Circles to Spirals

Berlin Wall, Germany. Photographed by Jean-Jacques M. © 1998 -2015. All Rights Reserved

Berlin Wall, Germany. Photographed by Jean-Jacques M. © 1998 -2015. All Rights Reserved

“Transcending the shadow (Jungian archetype) means neither suppressing it, nor living from it, nor being intrigued or fascinated by it. Once you have travelled through your own shadow you have created the space and time to reflect upon it in order to step out of it and live mostly outside of it and be able to observe it (in order to “keep it in check”). The same goes for the ego.

In that sense we have then become “lighter”, less shadow orientated. This is what enlightenment means in a practically achievable sense. You can live your life (much) freer from your shadow. Completely falling back into it or being enticed and intrigued by it becomes much less common or likely.”

By Jean-Jacques M.

© 2015. All Rights Reserved. Gypsycafe.org

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Building the New World Within (6) – Groundhog Day Revisited

Many small people who in many small places do many small things can change the face of the world-001

In the 1993 film, Groundhog Day by writer Danny Rubin and director Harold Ramis, Bill Murray plays the role of a television weatherman, Phil Connors who gets stuck in a small town due to strange circumstances, a situation which ultimately leads to his individuation and personal transformation.

The underlying theme of individuation is incredibly strong throughout the film, but is dealt with in such a light-hearted manner that elements of it could easily be missed. To illustrate how the individuation process might look like for an individual, on a practical level, let’s revisit some segments from this film.

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Photograph and text by Jean-Jacques @ Gypsy Café

© 2014. All Rights Reserved. Gypsycafe.org


Building The New World Within (5) – Tricksters, Trickery and Transcendence

He who wants the world to remain as it is do not want it to remain at all

…. “The Self” is our authentic self, hidden under the layers and layers of elements making up our personality, built up from childhood through culture, socialisation, belief systems and so on. The ego self is that layered persona which we use as a reflection to the world of who we are, in order to get ahead in life, but also to use as a defence mechanism in order not to show our real self. Many people confuse their ego-self with their real self and think that they are only their egos, due to having suppressed their real selves all their lives. It is important for all humans to have a well developed and healthy ego in order to function normally, but the ego-persona should be secondary to the authentic self. Ideally one would predominantly live from the real self as this would naturally lead to balance and contentment within which would produce authentic happiness. ….

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Gypsy Café has Relocated…

 

Cafe de Cuba

Dear Visitors

We are happy to announce that Gypsy Café has moved to it’s own space:

gypsycafe.org

All Welcome.  See you there!

Jean-Jacques @ Gypsy Café


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