Applied to religion and personal character, the entire concept of Being is a difficult one for most people to understand. This is because Being, in an existential sense, is an experience that demands no specific form of action—one does not have to do to be. In a culture consistently emphasizing doing that usually takes the form of having, the experience of being has little value. In fact, when they can no longer continue to do and have, most people report feeling lost and empty.
As an experience, including all the dimensions of human consciousness that have been referred to throughout the text. What our cultural ethos does is restrict the types of experiences that cultivate the belief that it is not necessary to have in order to be. What the market system breeds are a collection of separate and isolated, optimally consuming individuals. In a sense, therefore, schizoid conditions are beneficial to the postmodern market.
Culture is modernism magnified and amplified from a predominantly linear level of interaction to a quantum amalgam. New things begin to happen and emerge, never before experienced, become characteristics of everyday life. New levels of real interaction are constantly created. Novel subsystems, substructures, and parts emerge, and their interaction increases the possibility potential. Events no longer affect a person, community, or nation—they affect an entire planet.
One reason for this exponential distortion is the incredible technological changes that quantum physics has ushered in. In place of recognizing, understanding, and integrating technologically induced postmodern changes, one can simply compartmentalize them and ignore them. The splitting of consciousness and the subsystem of Self into parallel modules enables the organism to efficiently negotiate a rather complex reality. In religion and society, because the Being operates in the rarefied atmosphere of images, abstractions, and language it is an easily manipulated Self. Because the postmodern individual experiences no core being to retreat to, there is no internal anchor, and manipulation becomes easier. In fact, being manipulated can become desirable.
Manipulation by powerful external forces can ameliorate existential dread and provide the illusion of safety and meaning. The human expression of love and all that is connected with it, in a very modern and lingeringly romantic way, is still perceived by many as the ultimate connection—a relationship by which all other alliances are measured.