The ultimate goal of all forms of propaganda and misinformation is the same: they should convince you to believe in certain news or information that will directly or gradually lead you to certain behavior or acting. Whether you respond sooner or later, whether the misinformation gradually or instantly affects us, the goal is not changing. It’s always about taking control of you and the way you behave. Propaganda is a developed skill for social programming of mass or separate population groups.
Turning to conspiracy theories, which often operate in the gray zone between the rational and the irrational, it should be noted that cultivating conspiracy theories are one of the most effective ways to create fertile ground for the rapid spread of misinformation. In the magical world of conspiracy everything is possible: the end of the world, major disasters, conflicts, wars, the involvement of dark forces and much more. People who are receptive to conspiracy theories will find it much easier to believe in misinformation when it fits into existing conspiracy theories and occult narratives. Misinformation becomes just a new part or piece of the puzzle they have already cognitively shaped.
The complexity of the human mind has shown that sometimes different means are needed to convince people of misinformation. A series of propaganda techniques have been developed throughout history that exploit human belief in the supernatural, which transcends the mind and our perception. There are many experiences and testimonies from individuals and groups who have developed different cults and movements, to later prove that these groups and movements have been grossly manipulated, often with tragic consequences. Such manipulators usually succeed in misrepresenting themselves. Avatars themselves as mediators or media of higher supernatural powers, who in turn have to reveal to their followers some great truth, such as the coming of the end of the world. In sociological classifications, cults are considered “groups that follow deviant ideas or certain new beliefs. “In reality these deviant or new ideas are difficult to separate from everyday beliefs, so that victims of such manipulations can often become even those who do not consider themselves believers.
The techniques of manipulation and control developed in the cults have been studied extensively, and the skilled military-political propagandists are closely acquainted with the weaknesses of the human mind and its susceptibility to control by the so-called “Techniques of the supernatural”. Unfortunately, these techniques are often used even in everyday communication and daily political propaganda. Information on various miracles, supernatural events, and mysterious forces is usually found in today’s media in marginal sections, such as entertainment, life, style, recreation, and similar sections. Although consuming them seems to be just for fun or time-consuming, they can often have a much more serious effect, that is, framing and changing our view of the world around us, especially when timing is suitable for them.
Our media abounds with content that borders on the occult or the supernatural, and tries to “meet the needs” of superstitious readers. In the article “Prophecy That Freezes the Blood in the Veins: What Grandma Vangјa Predicts for 2020”, for example, we can learn that according to Grandma Vangјa, by 2020, Europe will have a much smaller population, the planet will almost be uninhabited which will be the result of a major world war, and in 2028 people will fly to Venus, where new sources of energy will be found.
In other media we can learn that “environmental activist Greta Thunberg is a time traveler who came to warn us”, and this conclusion has been drawn by numerous social media users from a 120-year-old photograph on which there is a girl who has a physically resembling of Greta Thunberg.
There are numerous examples of such content causing readers to get the chills (or laugh), but for our subject, the misinformation and propaganda are particularly interesting for those who have political-manipulative purposes. A previous article on this service discussed a series of manipulative texts in the context of the Pope’s visit to the state on May 7, 2019.
Nostradamus is probably the top authority in the genre of occult pseudo-journalism and is often found in online articles. His prophecies are always inspiring to relate to the most up-to-date developments, even if they were at some local level in small Macedonia. However, the series of articles that Nostradamus predicted the ” the Roman high priest (Pope) will be killed in a place that is swamped by two rivers a month as roses bloom”, outweighing the effects of the usual supernatural articles on supernatural.
Another popular article from Nostradamus’s prophecies in the Macedonian media was recorded in October 2018. He refers to the alleged prophecy that: “In modern times, Macedonia will soon be ruled by an unprincipled ruler who will try to destroy the name of Macedonia and the Macedonians in general just to just to please other rulers.”
What are the aims and effects of such content? It must be said that they have a potentially strong effect at a given social and political moment, that is, they can have a serious impact on how certain current events are interpreted.
The first news of the Roman high priest’s murder prophecy coincides with narratives that undermine the authority of the Roman Catholic Church and the Vatican as one of the key constituents of Western civilization. These narratives frame the reader’s awareness that “the Pope is a possible target of violence and attempted murder because there are many who do not love him.” And if there are many who do not love him, it means that he and the Roman Catholic Church are neither saintly flawless, implying immediately the anti-Vatican narratives and conspiracy theories that the Vatican controls world politics from behind the scenes.
And Nostradamus’ second (supposedly) prophecy also has a very apt application in the current political moment. It specifically mentions Macedonia and the name change, made by a “ruthless ruler”. Although these articles have virtually no journalistic support, they are without precise sources and references, and conveyed as a dark prophecy and legend, yet they are aimed at the sensibility of readers who seek a trans historical sense or supernatural context for the events they go through. As Roland Barthes explains in his “Mythologies”, such texts derive their meaning “not from denotations but from connotations”, that is, the true meaning of the text is in the symbolism introduced, while “the text’s connotations become new denotations of a new chain of connotations”. In other words, the text and this “information” are intended to mythologize our reality and transmit the consciousness of the reader to a ” with a high prehistoric and supranational dimension “.
Such techniques of persuasion are neither entertaining nor misleading. They have a serious potential for any manipulation by persuading the reader to exclude cognitive senses and critical consciousness and to surrender to the narration and interpretation of the “the mediator of supernatural and prehistoric “. Sometimes it’s Baba Vangјa, sometimes it’s Nostradamus, and sometimes it’s a world or local political leader.
The second critical dimension of such, often purposeful, articles and information is to form the “symbolic vertical” of information, that is, to directly link daily or current events with the higher levels of history, spirituality and supernatural forces that control the real. One who assures others that he can and knows how to connect these levels has a profound influence on how to interpret and control the reality of others.