The mission of a small “elite” group to control the masses is nothing new, in fiction or real life.
Dean Koontz uses mind control in his book Night Chills. By using a single phrase the antagonist can force innocent people into a hypnotic state to do whatever he wants. Even scarier is that this technique was created through an experimental government program.
And the very real CIA’s MK-Ultra mind control program from 1953 to 1964 was a government program that conducted a series of covert experiments carried out on unwitting subjects with the aim of producing mind-control techniques. In 1973 the then director of the CIA destroyed nearly all of the MK-Ultra’s records. Perhaps most disturbing of all was the fact that the extent of experimentation on human subjects was unknown.
What if this happened to you, an “unwitting subject”? Would you just wake up missing time with no recollection of what you did during that missing time? Have you ever had missing time that you couldn’t account for? I have. Once I lost two hours of time. I was in my car to go shopping and when I looked two hours had passed and I had missed an appointment. I often wonder where did that time go? Did aliens kidnap me for an experiment? Was a government experiment conducted on me without my consent? Silly to think, but is it really?
In my paranormal suspense novel, A Hidden Element, mind control is used by the Elyon cult community to get what they want – and its power can be taken away through punishment. Yet, even while the Elyon community uses mind control to commit theft and murder they have strict rules about it being used on their own people. They know that uncontrolled use of it will lead to the very destruction of their community and the breakdown of rules.
In 1978 I was just nine years old and simultaneously horrified and fascinated by the story of Jim Jones in the news that shocked the world. Jones was best known for the mass suicide of over 900 of his cult’s members in Jonestown, Guyana, by cyanide poisoning and the murder of five individuals at a nearby airstrip, including Congressman Leo Ryan.
As a child and now as an adult, I still can’t comprehend how so many could follow one man to their death. Yet, none of us are immune to mind control techniques. Peer pressure, hypnosis, sleep deprivation, fear, financial commitment, guilt, and isolation are just some ways we can be controlled to become people we never thought we might be. Here’s a post on mind control basics that details just how easy it can be.
Sadly, I know there will be more Jim Jones stories to come along. For as long as humans pursue power over the masses, mind control will be conducted by those who study human behavior in order to bend large populations to the will of a small “elite” group.
In writing about mind control in A Hidden Element, I tried to find my own way to explain how this could lead someone to do the unthinkable when presented with the choices before them.
Do you believe in mind control? And would you control others if you could do it?