The assumption of the simple is that humanity tends ever towards non-mysticism. That is wrong. Whether cursory or deep, every study of the human psyche reveals that humanity is well-adapted to mystical and religious beliefs.
Even in the Far East, where people are largely non-mystical in their conduct, there is still a tendency to check their daily horoscopes. Even where religion is actively discouraged, there is a tendency in ordinary people to seek out spiritual meaning, even if they look in the wrong places.
We must not assume that the ruling class of the western world is unaware that this tendency exists. In fact, their knowledge of the human psyche is so well-advanced, that they’re aware of what information they need to present to people in order to override their better judgement, either to suggest an idea to them while causing them to believe that it is their own, or to exploit a tendency towards synchronicity to influence towards a behavior.
While this seems new, it’s simply another manifestation of an old religious deception. Through nearly the entirety of human history, kings have made the claim to be divinely-appointed, or to be gods among men. What we are seeing today is a mere adaptation of an ancient idea, implemented through current technology. While the tools are different, the base tendencies of the common population are no different from what they’ve always been, and the same is true of the ruling class.
Marketers have been using subtle hypnotic tricks for decades. With the extensive psychological profiles that social media have built about every person they could, they have a new vehicle with which to hypnotize the masses. It would be too generous to suggest that they failed to resist the temptation presented by all that power.
They didn’t even try.
The atheist who convinces himself that he is immune by reason of his own non-mysticism is fooling himself in his conceit. When they are influenced into atheism, it’s because the influencers are aware of how the atheistic can be exploited.
Considering all this, there are a few questions to ask: Are your ideas your own? Are you aware who may have been presenting them to you? Is a person who would engage in such underhanded methods worthy of your respect? What can you do to protect your mind from malign influence, even as the influencers are on some of society’s highest levels? What reasonable measures can be taken to reduce their enrichment?
The fact is, everyone serves someone, whether they intend to or not. The American founders didn’t view freedom in the sense of doing whatever they pleased, but as serving one who is worth serving. The Biblical idea of freedom is similar. It’s because of this that this question is so important: How worthy is the one you serve?