Performing Without a Net

by Miles Patrick Yohnke

What did you learn today? Did you learn to believe? Or did you learn to think?

Corporate companies plan our future from the time we're awake till the time we go to bed, and even while we're sleeping. From the brand of toothpaste we buy, to what erectile dysfunction product we will use.

I think of the elephant. The gentle giant.

When the elephant first arrives at the circus, it must be "broken in" by its trainers. Tethered down by its legs, the poor baby elephant will be subjected to routine beatings and torture in order to break its spirit. This brutal method subdues the will of the elephant to the trainer.

This process may last for a month or longer. The trainer will use electric prods, sticks, and chains to beat the poor elephant into submission. These gentle giants could easily break free of the wire or chains around their leg that is spiked into a concrete floor. But they don't.

We humans are no different, really. We are discouraged early on by economic conditions, disabilities, contrarian parents, peer pressure, teachers, or others. Society in general and the media break our spirits. Over time you see this. Look around you. Most of us are as submissive as that elephant.

Why? Economics. Just about everything in this world is based on economics. All we are doing for the most part is getting jobs, creating new jobs, for material things. Fear is created.

Circus animals spend most of their lives caged in the back of trucks, being transported from show to show. With barely enough room, they sleep, eat and defecate in the same small confined area, day in and day out. With little mental stimulation or physical exercise, these animals often go insane from boredom and confinement. Often they fall sick from the lack of exercise, from being imprisoned in a metal cage.

We humans are similar. In cubicles. Feeling like we, too, are in metal cages. Only the cages are mental. Behind bars. Just longing to get out to go into bars. Or we stay in our own homes, where boredom often sets in. Too tired to exercise, we think. Imprisoned in our own body, we also become sick.

On Friday, June 17th, 1994 the networks aired the first reality television program. The chase of a white bronco truck (O. J. Simpson). People tuned in by the millions. Television executives were quick to respond. And we would be engrossed with the ensuing sagas, the drama played out on the world's stage.

In front of us we watch mindless television programs. The opiate of the masses. Reality shows meant to dumb down the masses, a distraction, really, to keep the attention off the real issues. These shows somehow make us feel a little bit better about ourselves. "Can you believe they behave like that? Look at these fools..." But the reality is, that which we judge outwardly is basically a projection of what we hide about our true selves within.

Often our joy comes in purchasing an item. A quick fix. Advertisers try to make you feel better about yourself by purchasing a certain product, or convince you that other people will like you better if you do. Shortly, after that purchase, the sadness returns, the emptiness. We are trying to fill holes that outwardly, superficial, material things were never meant to fill.

Or we have an evening out doing what that mindless beer commercial is trying to sell us. That "fun" night out on the town. We get to the club all beautiful, and by the night's end, so many of us are far from being beautiful. Loud. Drunk. All our internal problems are now on display for all to see.

Our identity is not our own. It is created by advertisements.

Advertisers sell us an idea. One of the ideas we are fed strongly now is in telecommunications. Communication companies are in many ways the new drug dealers of our youth and our society. What has happened is that through competition, these companies were forced to drive down their long distance costs, causing lost revenue. Text messaging became the new "drug" to replace this downfall. Again, preying on our youth. Self-esteem and communication skills have been negatively impacted by this. These children are our future. They will be our caretakers one day, our future leaders. Something to think about. We become slaves to the advertisers.

Think about this. How much time do you spend with your head buried in your smartphone texting mundane messages? Alarming isn't it? Do we think this little of our personal time? The advertisers win. They beat you down with their ads of happiness.

They teach you how to believe in the great life you will have texting or messaging all day and night. How much time you will save and how much more you can get done. At one time (not long ago) we would talk to people on these phones. We rarely do this now. Why? Partly we have become scared to talk or be engaged with someone in thought and conversation. It's more safe it seems. Less personal. Again, slave like that broken elephant.

Recently the advertisers did a remarkable job getting us buying large televisons. 60 or 70" screens or larger. Now we are supposed to watch on our smartphones? Am I missing something here? Are you? Is society? Now we are supposed to watch a sporting event on our smartphones? I can't see the football, baseball and definitely not the hockey puck.

And we talk of erectile dysfunction products. Sad isn't it? Sad that we see so much time and money spent thinking about men's privates and their functioning or non-functioning. Was there an earth-shattering problem prior to December 1997? Of all the problems and issues going on in this world, here we are being more worried about our dicks. What the hell is happening? Marketing.

Corporate power and advertisers tell us a message. Then they sell it to us at a profit. Create the market. Flood the market. Reap the rewards. Simple, yet powerful concept.

Do you know who also had a message? Adolf Hitler. Sounds crazy, doesn't it? Yet, he too sold a message and people bought it. He preyed on their weaknesses. Hunger. Jobless. Hopeless.

In 1938, USA's Time Magazine named Adolf Hitler "Man of the Year".

Next time you like something, ask yourself why?

Don't you think it's time to take back your own DNA? Reclaim your true self. Living like it's a circus with people telling you what to believe is nonsense. It's time to learn. It's time to think. It's now time for us to not be scared. F.E.A.R- false evidence appearing real. Come out from the veil of illusion. Live life like it is meant to be lived, like a great trapeze artist. At some point, can we perform without a net, and just trust that our own skills and judgement will serve us better than the big corporations?

By Miles Patrick Yohnke
© 2012 All Rights Reserved.


Miles Patrick Yohnke

About the Author
Globally recognized and award-nominated engineer, producer, writer, poet and founder and C.E.O. of 5 Star Productions, Miles Patrick Yohnke brings many years of experience to the music industry; including many awards in sales and marketing. If you are looking at developing your career, Yohnke offers consulting in person, by phone or via email. For more info, please contact him directly at: 306.227.6379 or email at:miles(at)

Read additional offerings from Miles:

Occupy Yourself

Think, Rethink, Challenge Yourself


Olympic Sized Pity Pool


For Those About to Bike (We Salute You)