Most Powerful of Powers

Influence comes in many forms. In its most basic (and likely historical) form, influence by bulk allows direction and control. The bigger body holds command because its simply bigger. The bigger body is a threat, a potential hazard threatening life. “I’m bigger and can hurt you”, though unspoken, hovers over interactions.

In our need to avoid pain and continue our existence we self-preserve in consolation. Roll over, weak man, the bigger one is near and knows just what he wants. Dare the smaller body refuse to concede, he must utilize a different form of influence.

Where physical power is defeated a power of cognition fogs the interaction. Tasked with challenging a stronger figure, the weaker body’s strength of mind becomes the crucial tool. The weaker one can gain power by manipulating interpretation. Reality is understood by interpretation and any technique that can muddle this procedure gives way to endless forms of control.

To control what one perceives is far simpler than it seems. Can one decide what another sees? Can sound be manipulated or the very tools from which one frames the sense of life? Herein lies the greatest form of influence: the controlling of the mind.

For the skilled operator of rhetoric and reason it is the ability to control interpretation that has greatest power. Well deployed by leaders of all areas of life, this skill provides the user with immense strength. Millions have given their lives for causes and figures whose existence they were unaware of until some introduction. No one is born with a call to action or need to fulfill a destiny. All must be indoctrinated and convinced to act.

The control of the mind is the greatest power. For some, the ability to manipulate the intellect is an in-born skill. Discovered with age, the master manipulators in society spill forth with perhaps the most profound decision granted to an individual: to manipulate or not to manipulate? For those gifted with the ability to influence it is simply a question of application. While some will recognize their gifts and skills as devices from which to create a better good, others will see powers for abuse. How might one utilize the ultimate gift? If power corrupts it does so while providing the simple question of “How?” If you choose to use these skills, it asks, how will you do so? In the end there is no greater strength than this ability to use communication to manipulate. Is our entire history a series of responses by figures given these skills? History is a narrative of these answers.

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